Managing your finances can be really stressful. There’s so much information to know, mastering all of it seems like an impossible task. Moreover, if you’ve developed some bad financial habits over the years, correcting them may seem extremely daunting.
Luckily, it is possible to improve your financial prowess. With a little effort, you will set yourself up for a better financial future, which can be a real benefit when it comes to starting a business. As you overcome your bad financial habits and instill new, good habits, you’ll learn how to manage not only your personal finances but business finances, too.
If you want to become more successful and get closer to starting your own business, you need to give up the five habits below. Some of them you’ll be able to give up today, while others will take a little bit longer to overcome. There might be some hard work involved to rewrite these five behaviors, but once you do, you’ll find that the work was well worth the outcome.
1) Living paycheck to paycheck
Very often, people have no idea what they’re actually spending all of their money on. Before they know it, their bank account is approaching zero, and they’re simply waiting for their next paycheck to come. The bottom line is this: without paying attention, it’s easy to spend the money you should be saving.
If you’d like to break out of this vicious cycle, the first step is to start tracking your expenses. If you don’t know where all of your money is going, you can’t give it a purpose. So, track every dollar, understand how much is going in and how much is going out. With this information in mind, you can overcome the bad habit of living paycheck to paycheck.
2) Avoiding a budget
Figuring out exactly how much money is coming in and going out is the first step to financial freedom, but it’s not the only step. Once you have a grasp of your monthly income and expenses, you’ll need to create a budget.
Whether you’re managing your personal finances or your new company’s money, you should always have a budget in place. Creating a working plan that outlines how you’ll cover your expenses and save for the future is key to financial well-being.
3) Neglecting your credit score
Knowing your current credit score and how you can improve it is paramount to success. Unfortunately, 30 percent of Americans have a bad habit of not checking and knowing their credit scores. Whether you worry about having bad credit or not, you should check your credit score at least once a year. Even if you are doing everything right, errors on your credit report might cause you to have an inaccurate score that threatens your financial health.
Although neglecting your credit score is number three on this list, its importance shouldn’t be understated. When you start a new business, your credit will likely serve as your company’s credit history. To secure the best funding and financing available for your future company, you need to start managing and improving your personal score today.
4) Failing to review statements and bills
Every month — sometimes several times a month — statements and bills roll in. Many of these documents don’t seem to require immediate attention, so people only view them at the end of the month. However, not opening these documents as soon as they arrive can wreak havoc on your finances.
If you don’t view your statements when they arrive, you might miss out on important information that should inform your budget. Like your credit, it’s also not uncommon for incorrect items to make themselves onto your statements.
Additionally, although you might dread looking at bills, you should catalog and categorize them as soon as they arise. Accidentally neglecting to pay a bill you’ve forgotten about is all too easy, so don’t give yourself the chance. This is a bad habit that doesn’t help your personal finances, and it certainly isn’t something you’ll want to do when you’re running your own company.
5) Thinking you can manage everything
Many people — especially aspiring business owners — have a bad habit of thinking that they can do everything by themselves. There’s only so much you can learn about building, managing and preserving your finances.
Fortunately, you can work with a mentor or a financial advisor that can help you overcome your bad financial habits to achieve financial freedom.
Over the years, mutual funds have come across as a popular and fairly profitable instrument of investment. They have proved to be more hassle free and risk averse as compared to direct stock investments.
Here is an insight on how you can plan your mutual fund investment:
As the name suggests, these investments are made for short periods of time, typically for 12-month duration or even less.
These investments are a boon in emergency situations. Be it a medical emergency or the sudden need of money for down payment of your car, short term mutual funds can bail you out.
What to keep in mind?
Since the investment is for a brief period, it needs to be ensured that your investment is insulated from market volatility. It is important as you would not want to see your investment numbers cut a sorry figure at the time of emergency. So, it is advised to invest in low-risk options -- liquid funds like Commercial Papers (CPs) and T-Bills or debt funds like government bonds, company debentures, fixed income assets etc.
These kind of mutual fund investments are made for a period of 1-3 years
If you are planning to launch a start-up or a business, mid- term investments are your best bet. Experts say that these investments can be helpful in case you are planning to buy property or real estate.
What to keep in mind?
In mid-term investments, your aim should be to have the best of both worlds. That is, you should eye to maximize your capital gains but at the same time you cannot afford to take too much risk as the period of investment in this case, is still not very long. So you can choose to stick with debt funds or maybe opt for Systematic Investment Plan (SIP) or monthly investments. SIP in mutual fund is recommended as a great way for a salaried person to invest in equity markets for long-term basis without understanding the working of equity markets.
Any mutual fund investment for a period of more than three years is termed as a long-term investment.
As it is quite evident from the nature of the investment, long-term investments hold good if you are planning for the future. If you want to sort out your retirement plans, save for old- age health issues or nurture your child's education, you should definitely go for long-term investments.
What to keep in mind?
Since the investment is a long-drawn one, you can take down your guards off to some extent, against market volatility. You won't mind taking a few risks to rake in the maximum possible profits. So you can choose to invest in equity funds i.e. in shares of companies.