In order to be successful, you must have resources. To buy that dream home, purchase that new car, save for retirement, start a new business, college fund, requires money. Before I start talking about, 401K, mortgage loans, IRA, Stocks and Bonds, 529 college plans, lets first deal with the basis of financial freedom-saving! Here's 4 tips for your journey toward Financial Freedom:
1.Be honest! "A Journey of a thousand miles begins with one step, but you must know what direction your going in." You may not want to think about the money you've spent and the money you did not save, but acknowledging where you are can help in making wise decision in the future. Know the facts about your credit, spending habits, & debt. Go to www.annualcreditreport.com to get your free credit report. Take inventory of your assets and liability. You can print a downloadable personal financial statement to help inventory your finances at http://www.finance.cch.com/tools/downloads/perfinanstatement.rtf
2. Commit to saving! I live by the 80/10/10 rule; 80% income goes to basic living expenses, 10%tithe, 10% saving. I have money automatically withdrawn from my bank account so I don't even miss it. Online banks like, ING offers free savings account with no fees, no minimum balance, 4% return-www.ingdirect.com. You may not be able to save 10%, but commit today to save at least $30.00 month, $1.00 a day and then gradually increase as you see fit.
3.Build a budget. Sit down and record your income and expenses and manage money accordingly. I recommend www.mint.com which offers a free money management tools to build budget.
4. Cut Frivolous Spending. Make a list of needs vs. wants. Cut back on entertainment, eating out and other extras. Give yourself a weekly allowance.