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Managing Your Finances

Learning money management techniques, creating a successful budget, building your savings, and using credit wisely, are all ways to keep your head above water and your finances intact.

Evaluate household spending and prepare a budget

Evaluate the ways your family uses money. Many times people buy things, not because they need the things, but because they want to spend money. Now is the time to tighten the purse strings and eliminate needless spending.

Find ways you can cut corners. To do this, you must know exactly how much money you have coming in and going out each month. Estimate what you spend on food, clothes, school, gifts, and other expenses.

Think about your cash on hand.  You may need to decide whether to withdraw some of your savings or to take out a loan.  What you decide will depend on your individual circumstances.

Prepare a complete household budget worksheet. Use the household budget worksheet as a guide. Separate expenses into critical, such as mortgage, rent, taxes, insurance, loans, installment payments, credit card payments; and noncritical, i.e., magazine subscriptions.  It is wise to cut out all unnecessary expenditures. 

Contact Creditors

Talk to the people you owe money to. Do not ignore bills or you may lose what you already have. Immediately contact your creditors: the finance company, bank, credit union, and department stores.  Make an appointment to explain your situation. You may be able to refinance your loan, or make another contract for smaller payments over a longer period of time.You may consider a consolidation loan.

Try and work out a way to handle your monthly mortgage payments.  If they are too high for you to pay, go to your lender and explain.  Perhaps you can pay only the interest for a certain period of time.  Or, they may permit you to postpone one or two payments until you have pulled yourself out of your financial crisis.  The most important thing is that you talk with your creditors.

You may also want to contact your creditors and try to negotiate a payment plan. 

 

Back to Top Page Last Edited: Tue Oct 4, 2011 9:21:17 AM
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