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11 Smart Money Moves to Make Now

11 Smart Money Moves to Make Now

Heather Hetterick | DivineCaroline

August 09, 2010

Have at least 20 percent down if not more when you buy a home. A bank will approve a home loan for way more than you can actually afford. Just because they’ll give you that much money certainly does not mean you should take it. Life it too short to be stressed out with a mortgage you can barely make. Do not get a second mortgage either. We fell into that trap. If we’d had a little patience and waited another six months to a year, we could have easily made the down payment, avoided a second mortgage and the higher interest rate that went with it.

Read. Educate yourself on money. It’s overwhelming to get married, start your own household, or buy a house. Read everything you can to make the best choices. Magazines, books, and the Internet are all great resources. My husband and I both read the same books and that helped us be on the same page when it came to money. A couple I recommend: Total Money Makeover and The Millionaire Next Door.

Have goals. You can’t get where you’re going if you don’t know where your going! You may have career or personal goals and you should have financial goals too. If you want a different vehicle figure out how much you need to save a month to get there. I’m currently saving to build a new house and have a savings goal in place for a down payment. I have photos of homes I’m interested to keep me on track and motivate me. Each time I’m tempted to divert from savings I look at the photos to keep me on track.

Utilize Coupons. I wish I would have know about couponing ten years ago. Much of our financial success has come from not our income, but controlling our expenses through coupons.> You can drastically reduce your expenses when you get things for free and pay at least 50 percent off the retail price. We’ve found this small time investment has paid us large returns in savings.

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