Getting your finances in shape can be very similar to trying to get into physical shape. It can be a long journey, and you must stay disciplined to see results. It can be discouraging in the beginning, but once you’re over the initial and most difficult hurdles, it starts to be something you’re excited and motivated to do.
It’s important to have strategies in place to help you stay on track and reach your ultimate goal. Consider these 5 ways to help you get your finances in shape, and if you still need some extra help, consider a personal loan from TLC!
1. Identify your financial goals
Everyone has something they’re always working towards financially. Studies always show you’re more likely to reach that goal if it’s specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-specific. This means determining:
- What you’re specifically trying to accomplish
- How you’re going to accomplish it
- Why you want to accomplish it
- When you’re going to accomplish it by
For example, you want to pay off a credit card debt. You would ask yourself, what is motivating you to pay off the debt? How much are you going to pay off? How do you intend to get the funds to pay this off? And by when are you going to have completed this? It helps to get as specific as possible with your goals and objectives and to have them all written in the same place.
2. Do your research
For many, the topic of money and personal finances can be stressful, which is why it’s widely avoided. Using that method usually does not have the best outcome. Being unaware of the right options for dealing with debt and expenses leaves you at great risk for falling into unfortunate and credit-damaging habits. Be as informed about your own finances, and finances in general as possible. This means routinely checking your credit report, which can be done for free through all three major credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Know your credit score, as well as the baseline credit score required for any loans or credit cards you might want to apply for. For more financial tips and general information, visit our Learning Center!
3. Create a budget and a financial calendar
A budget, and sticking to it, is the key to financial health. To start, track your daily transactions and expenses. An easy way to do this is by making a financial journal. Start with tracking 7 days, but to get the full picture of where your money is going, you’ll want to track spending for a whole month. Once you have an accurate idea of where your money is going, you can create a budget that actually works. Make adjustments to ensure your expenses are kept below income and that enough is left over for saving.
Creating a financial calendar can go hand in hand with a budget. It can be easy to ignore financial tasks until the last minute. There are a variety of ways to set up reminders throughout the month and the year to do things like review insurance policies, get your credit report, or rebalance investments. You should also add personal due dates such as rent, credit card bills, etc.
4. Go automatic
Financial advisors say if you’re not already making saving contributions automatically by now, you’re behind the curve. Putting the money from your paycheck towards savings before you even see it ensures you don’t have the opportunity to spend it on something else. You should also automate your bill paying. This streamlines the process while ensuring all payments are made on time. To avoid surprises, only automate bills that are the same every month, such as rent or insurance. Credit card payments should not be automated, as amounts vary and have the possibility of draining your account.
5. Consider applying for a personal loan
Many are aware that a personal loan is the perfect solution for financial emergencies, but few think that they can be an option for getting your financial well-being back on track. Using a personal loan for things such as paying down debt, has many benefits, especially over putting it on another credit card. These include: much lower rates, quicker payoff, single payments, and the potential to boost credit score. Learn more about paying off debt with a personal loan here.
How to apply for a loan from TLC
Applying for a personal loan couldn’t be easier with TLC. All you need is your:
- Social Security Number
- Address and phone number
- Income and banking information
The approval process should be quick and easy. Once we receive your application, our customer service representatives will contact you to verify your income and employment, you will sign your loan agreement electronically, and be all set to receive your funds. It’s even possible to get next day funds if your application is submitted by 1PM CST. We take pride in providing fast, friendly and compassionate service, so don’t hesitate to apply! All applications will be considered. And never forget, you’re with a reliable company – No extra fees, 24/7 customer support, and full data protection.