In the spirit of Halloween, I thought I would talk about FEAR. Financial fears to be exact. We all have them, but they vary from person to person. So this morning I read a great article from Business Insider on common financial fears. But don't worry, you can overcome these fears with the help of your local credit union. To find a credit union near you, click here.
Personally, I struggle with using credit. Not because I am in debt, it's quite the opposite. I was approved for my first credit card about a month ago because I decided I needed to build credit. Have I made any purchases on it yet? No. Why not? Fear. I've heard so many horror stories about people racking up consumer debt like it's their job.
The thing is I know I am more responsible than to spend beyond my means. I restricted myself to a low limit so I cannot spend beyond my means even if I wanted to. I need to face my fear and use my credit card on manageable purchases like groceries or gas. Those types of purchases will be manageable to pay in full when the credit card bill comes every month.
Another thing you can do to minimize your fear of using credit cards is to do research prior to getting one. The University Credit Union is offering a great opportunity for people like me--first time credit cards holders. With no annual fees and rates as low as 7.99% APR I will have peace of mind when I finally start using my credit card!
Just the word budgeting can make people break out into cold sweats. I think many people think a budget will tie them down and cramp their style. But according to the Business Insider, budgeting actually tells you exactly what you have so you can spend (and save) with confidence.
The Business Insider gave a simple yet revolutionary advice for overcoming the fear of budgeting! Instead of a yearly budget or even monthly, try setting a budget for tomorrow. Every day set your budget for the next day, try this for one or two weeks. Then your ready to plan a weekly budget. Budgeting one step at a time will make it feel more manageable and less scary!
Once you've got a grip on budgeting for tomorrow, check out how to Shoebox Budget on the Living Young & Free Field Guide. It's a easy to handle guide to setting a monthly budget even for first timers.
Reviewing Bills & Bank Statements
The fear of facing your bills and statements is a big one. But letting bills pile up and statement go unread can cause bigger problems. I think not knowing your financial situation is scarier than knowing how many bills you're late on!
You can only strive to financial health if you know and understand your situation. Have a trusted friend, accountant, or credit union employee look over your financial documents with you and help you understand them.
Or start with a baby step at understanding your finances by understanding the lingo of the financial world. Check out the Living Young & Free Field Guide for a glossary of financial terms.
It's time to face your fears! Hope this helps!