Regardless of where a woman is in your life, you must arm yourself with the tools and knowledge you need to manage your own finances with confidence. All women should know the basics of personal finance for women and thus avoid costly consequences.
How to know more about personal finance. In terms of financial education, it has an impact on wealth accumulation, retirement planning and stock market investment.
There are studies that show that women are more likely than men to have a credit card balance, pay only the minimum amount due each month and incur late payment charges.
Here are five fundamental concepts that every woman should know about her personal finances:
1. Your credit report and score matter
Your credit score is taken into account if you qualify for a mortgage or car loan and at what rate, as well as determine credit card limits and interest rates.
Lenders believe that those with higher credit scores are less risky, in case you get better deals.
Each credit agency has its own form of qualification, which may not be the same one your lender uses when applying for a loan. But you can, and should, continue to have a general idea of your credit score and ways to improve it.
Each year, download a free copy of your credit report, or annual credit report, which includes information about open credit card accounts, with timely and late payment information, as well as other debt information.
Check each one to make sure that the information is correct, that no one appears fraudulently in your report and that all accounts listed are really yours, as errors may occur.
2. Calculate the amount of your total debt
You should know about your total household debt, which may include:
- Student loans,
- Car loans
- Credit Card Balances,
Even if they have an automatic payment schedule or if your spouse pays the bills.
It is important to know how much money you owe and to whom. If you are married and have joint accounts, you may be liable for your spouse’s debts, even if they did not authorize or did not know. You will also want to know how you are paying the debt, how long it will take and the interest rate. Understanding these details will allow you to make a better financial plan, possibly paying faster loans with higher interest.
3. Your sources of income.
For many women, their main income is their salary. But there are other sources of income that you must control each year to have a complete picture of the money that goes into your bank account. That could include:
- Investment dividends,
- Loan repayments you made,
- Income for some complementary works,
- Tax refunds
This can help you adjust the amount paid in taxes every year, so you don’t overpay or pay less to the government. But it also helps you understand a complete financial picture for budgetary planning and retirement purposes.
4. Have an overview of your expenses
You must know what is coming; you must also know where your money is going.
Whether it’s to balance your checkbook to the last penny or just to get a broad sense of budget categories, knowing some of the high-priced items can help you understand family or personal finances.
This is especially useful if you are saving money for something big, such as a down payment or a special vacation. In addition, it is useful to know what you are spending to be able to plan your retirement and investment.
Knowing where your money is going means that you can make changes more easily, if necessary, to meet your financial goals and see if there is any useless expense. For more information and advice on your unique financial situation, you can speak with a financial advisor.
5. Access and track all accounts
Access to your accounts is key, whether your accounts are individual or joint.
It’s okay for your spouse to pay the bills and make the investments, as long as you have access to the accounts to stay updated. If your spouse is managing the accounts, get a list of the account login and password information and check them occasionally to make sure you understand what is there. Even for your own accounts, it is important to monitor them for any activity.
Following the above advice can help establish basic financial health for today’s women.