Managing Personal Finances

Bruce HeenManaging personal finances is something many individuals and families struggle with. From lines of credit to loans to filing for taxes, it seems like the stream of information surrounding financial matters is never-ending and often difficult to understand. When it comes to tackling personal finances, it is easy to feel over whelmed. One way to combat this is to think of your overall financial situation in small increments and assess each part individually. Focus in on three financial issues that need to be addressed, for example, student loans, IRAs, and car payments, and figure out a plan of action for each. Breaking down financial planning will help you think more clearly, make better decisions, and benefit you in the long run.

One creeping threat to many young adults is the impending doom of student loans. With college tuition at an all time high, paying for education is definitely a financial issue that should be addressed. While a private, academically superior university may be appealing or even thought of as necessary to get a job, many employers say that where an applicant gets a degree matters very little. Consider looking into less expensive, quality colleges as a first step to avoid debt later in life.

Another thing to think about during financial planning is IRAs. Although paying up front may seem like that best solution because it can protect you from higher rate in the future, it is important to weigh all of your IRA options. Different IRAs will benefit different types of people and choosing the right payment method could saving you a good deal of money in the long run.

A third area of personal finance that should be addressed is the question of buying or leasing when you are shopping for a new car. Recently, leasing cars has become very popular and many auto manufacturers are trying to make leasing more appealing through lower pricing on standard three-year leases. However, there are other long-term factors that should be considered when leasing a car to make sure that you are getting the best deal, including the value of the car you are considering buying or leasing and how long you plan to keep the car.

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