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Updated: Wednesday, 16 Jan 2013, 2:45 PM EST
Published : Wednesday, 16 Jan 2013, 2:45 PM EST
PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) - It’s mid-January and are you finding it hard to stick to those financial resolutions, like saving money and spending smarter? Well, it’s never too late to get on the right financial track.
Rita Earnhardt, Community Involvement Coordinator with BayPort Credit Union had several tips to get you into financial shape this year.
1. Start with being honest with yourself. How motivated am I to really change in a certain are of my finances. Rate the importance on a scale of 1 to 10 on things such as:
So, you’ve accessed yourself, then what?
2. Revisit your resolutions and set some “SMART” financial goals. Use the word “SMART” as an acronym as a reminder of your resolutions.
· “S” – specific: make your goal specific instead of keeping it vague. Instead of saying you want to save money this year, make a plan to save a specific amount. Ex. I’m going to save $100 each pay check that can only be used in an emergency.
· “M” – measurable: Make sure you can see your progress. See the credit card debit decreasing or view on line how your savings account is growing.
· “A” – adjustable: be flexible for changes that may occur throughout the year. You may be out due to illness for a short time period and not able to save $100. Give yourself that flexible, knowing that you are adjusting your plan slightly and will resume the resolution soon.
· “R” – realistic: Be honest about your income and your responsibilities. It might be a desire to save 10% of your income each pay period, but realistically you may only be able to save 3% or even 1%. Just get started and stay committed.
· “T” – time: Set your goal with a time frame in mind. I want to get this credit card paid off in 4 months. Having a time frame set will help you be accountable to the resolution. It will also help you not to be tempted to make additional purchases on the credit card during the time that has been set.
So, by asking these key questions and then customizing a plan that will work for you, those financial resolutions can become a reality and you will find yourself financially fit in 2013.
To learn more about becoming financially fit, stop by any of the 15 BayPort Credit Union locations across Hampton Roads.
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