Friday, August 3rd: Today is the third day in SIMPLIFY YOUR LIFE WEEK. Today we celebrate by looking at simplifying our finances. On this subject, I can’t claim to use my own life as examples of what to do. For finances, I bow to the wisdom of others. Elaine St. James, in Simplify Your Life, has excellent advice on different ways to simplify your financial life.
- First, and foremost is … Get out of Debt! Less debt means fewer bills to sit down and pay every month. Also, take a look at how much each month is paid in interest charges, annual fees and late fees. This can add up to substantial savings each month.
- Rethink your buying habits: St. James also advises thinking twice about purchases. They designated one day a week for shopping. This may not be feasible for many families, but if you can factor in some ‘think about it time’, you may decide that you don’t need the item you’re considering, or there may be another way to fulfill the need.
- Consolidate accounts. Less accounts to keep track of takes less time, uses less paper and eases some lives.
- Pay off your mortgage. Paying a little extra on your mortgage each month can significantly reduce the term of your mortgage and save many thousands of dollars over the life of your loan.
Here are some excellent books on getting your financial life in order. (in no particular order)
How to Get Out of Debt, Stay Out of Debt, and Live Prosperously: Based on the Proven Principles and Techniques of Debtors Anonymous, Jerrold Mundis
How to Make a Budget: Get Out of Debt and Start Saving More Money, Brian Carr
LIVING FRUGALLY: Tips On Saving Money And Living Within Your Means, Pepper Rosanne
The 1-2-3 Money Plan, Gregory Karp
One Year to an Organized Financial Life, ReginaLeeds
The Money Book for the Young, Fabulous and Broke, Suze Orman
Rich Dad, Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach Their Kids About Money – That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not!, Robert T. Kiyosaki
The Total Money Makeover: A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness by Dave Ramsey
The Richest Man in Babylon, George Clason
The Millionaire Next Door, Thomas J. Stanley
Your Money or Your Life, Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez