Financial Stress Keeping You Up at Night?
What keeps you up at night?
If it's worries about your finances, you're not alone. According to a poll by creditcards.com, approximately 65% of Americans stay up at night worrying about money. So what specifically is causing their nighttime terrors?
Here are three of the most common worries and some proven remedies for putting them to rest.
Worry #1: Managing Debt
For all too many people, debt is a part of life. One of the biggest sources of debt is credit card debt. According to a recent Federal Reserve report, the average person in the United States has more than $4,000 in credit card debt. Compounding the credit card debt problem are recent interest rate increases by the federal government, which have resulted in higher interest fees and monthly payments.
Remedy: Make a concerted effort to pay off your debt. Be sure to pay more than your minimum monthly payment and to pay off higher-interest debt first. If you can, transfer your higher-interest balances to a lower-interest credit card. And of course, use your credit card only when you know you can pay off the balance each month
Worry #2: Living Paycheck to Paycheck
With the high cost of living today, many people find it difficult to build savings, which is critical for managing life's expected and unexpected expenses.
Remedy: Set a budget. Take a careful look at your income and expenses to determine how much net income you have each month. Then, determine ways you can reduce expenses to increase the income you have to save. For example, you may consider bringing a lunch to work instead of buying it. Once you determine how much you can save, arrange to have money automatically transferred to a savings account every pay period or month.
Worry #3: Retirement Savings
Not having enough money to fund retirement is one of the greatest worries for Americans.
Remedy: Remember that it's never too early or too late to save for retirement. If your employer offers a retirement plan, enroll in it and take advantage of any matching contributions. If you aren't able to join an employer's plan, you can open and contribute to an Individual Retirement Account (IRA). The key is to make regular contributions over time. If you don't think you have extra money to save for retirement, take a closer look at your monthly spending. Chances are, you can find ways to reduce your spending and put that extra money to work for your retirement.