Financial House Cleaning 101: Where to Begin
Posted by Century Support Services on Mar 18, 2021
With the warmer months of spring approaching, you might be thinking about doing a little “spring-cleaning” around the house—but what about your finances? If you’re like most people, there’s a good chance that your personal finances could use a little organization, too.
So, where should you begin with setting realistic financial goals and “cleaning house,” so to speak? We’ve got some practical yet effective tips to share with you!
Get Serious About Your Budgeting
It all begins with a solid budget. If you already have a household budget in place, that’s great—but if it’s been a year or more since you created your budget, it could probably use some revisiting. If you don’t have a budget in place, now is the time to create one.
Having a budget is the single best way to know where you stand financially. Specifically, a budget helps you see how much money you have coming in versus how much you’re spending. Furthermore, a detailed budget will even break down how much you’re spending on certain categories, such as groceries, entertainment, utilities, and the like.
Not sure where to begin with your budget? Check out our blog post on some of the best budgeting apps out there today!
Streamline Your Expenses
Once you have a budget in place, you should also have a better idea of where you’re spending most of your money. Of course, some of the money you spend on a recurring basis will cover your essential living expenses. This includes things like rent/mortgage, debt repayment, utilities, and other things you need to get by.
However, you may also notice that a large chunk of your expenses are eaten up by non-essential spending. This can include things like shopping, eating out, and entertainment (like those five different streaming services you’re paying for each month).
Streamlining your expenses is all about finding ways to cut down on unnecessary spending. Most of this will come from eliminating sources of non-essential spending. For instance, rather than paying for your monthly Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, and HBO subscriptions, perhaps it’s time to narrow down your streaming services to just one or two that you use most often. Check out the new alliance Century has made with Billcutterz – ‘They do the work for you & save YOU money on your monthly bills’!
You can also look for ways to save on your essential living expenses, such as childcare and utilities. Check with your cable/Internet provider, for example, to see if they can offer you a break on your monthly bill. If you have children in daycare, “shop around” to make sure you’re getting a fair deal. You might be surprised to learn that it’s more affordable to hire an in-home nanny than it is to send your child to a daycare center, though this can vary depending on childcare costs where you live!
Get Help With Your Taxes
Tax season is also right around the corner, so now is a good time to make sure you’re taking advantage of all the resources available to you—especially if you’re facing tax liens, wage garnishments, tax penalties, or interest. To explore your options, check out CommunityTax and see what you may be eligible for based on the amount and type of debt you owe; they offer a wide range of programs, including penalty abatement and Tax Assurance Programs, to assist you.
In addition, you’ll also want to explore tax credits and deductions for which you may qualify. For example, your aforementioned childcare costs are likely tax-deductible, so be sure to keep track of how much you’ve paid to your daycare provider throughout the year so you can report these expenses accurately!
Contact Century to Learn About Debt Settlement
If debt settlement sounds like it might be the right debt reduction strategy for you, contact Century Support Services. Century has helped hundreds of thousands of people settle debts that they otherwise couldn’t pay, and has saved clients a lot of time, aggravation and money in the process. To date, Century has settled more than $1.3 billion in debt and maintains a 94% satisfaction rating.
To get started, you’ll receive our free assessment and our Certified Debt Specialists will create a personalized program plan for you.
To learn more about the debt settlement process or if you have any general questions relating to how long does debt settlement take or how long will it take to recover from debt settlement, we’re happy to answer any questions.
Contact us today!