Individuals need to consider these four things when evaluating their current financial situations.
Good credit scores are required if someone wants to be approved for a mortgage loan at a favorable interest rate, for example. Credit scores also directly affect people’s ability to obtain credit cards with good reward programs. Therefore, people should understand how credit scores are determined. They need to be aware of factors, such as the credit max and utilization ratio.
People need to understand how much of their paycheck they are keeping every month. Are they making unnecessary purchases? For example, some people subscribe to too many streaming services while not having time to enjoy them all. To cut minor costs like that, sticking to one subscription can help. By having a high savings rate, people can put more money in their bank accounts, and thus can receive more interest payments. They can also allocate more money towards investments.
Being in debt is stressful. It can delay major life milestones, such as buying a house or starting a family. People in debt must come up with a solid plan to pay everything off. For example, they can keep their finances organized by consolidating multiple loans together. They can also get a lower interest rate by refinancing. However, making minimal payments may not be enough. Getting out of debt is impossible if people only make enough to pay off the interest on their loans. Therefore, individuals must think of ways to increase their income so that they can make more payments.
People must analyze the assets in their brokerage account and decide whether they need to rebalance their portfolios. Are they heavily concentrated in a few stocks? If so, then they need to quickly sell some of those stocks and diversify. Also, the overall portfolio might be too risky. This is a major concern for people about to retire. They cannot leave the workforce if their nest egg suddenly drops in value. Older workers should invest in safer assets such as investment-grade bonds.
By thinking about even just these four things, people can improve their financial situations greatly.