We're often told to take charge of our money, but first you have to find it. No, we're not talking about digging under the couch cushions for loose change.
"It's so important to get started right now. Not tomorrow, not next week, not next month, today," said financial educator and author Laura Gisborne.
She says you can start by asking your credit card companies and mortgage lender for lower interest rates.
"Nine times out of ten the bank is going to say 'yes' and if they say 'no' and, you say, 'Ok, well, I'm going to go ahead and close my account then.' Then, all of sudden they're like, oh wait, let me get my supervisor," Gisborne said.
Next, check to see if your utility company offers equalizer payments, so you pay the same amount each month, regardless of your usage. That should make budgeting easier.
Other advice? Try to carry cash more than credit so you're aware of how much you're spending.
"It's just too easy to swipe," Gisborne cautioned.
Also, set up an automatic transfer each month from your checking to your savings account.
"So, if you even set aside, $25 a month as a place to start, what ends up happening is it goes to the savings account, but your checking account is still attached, so you start saving money," Gisborne said.
But what do you tell people who don't want to talk about money or don't want to put a budget together?
"Budget's a word that none of us really like to play with," Gisborne said. "But if we keep our heads in the sand, it's really not going to serve us in the long term."
So, by making a little change in your life, you could put some extra change in your pocket.
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