While class action rebates may be a way to earn extra money, it’s important to ensure you are freeing as much extra money as you can with your normal day to day finances so you can ensure you are adequately set up for the future. Some may be common sense, or some you haven’t thought of, but either way it’s better to get a grip on your finances now so you can get ahead and set yourself up to continue to enjoying life’s experiences when you do decide to walk away from work.
Check Your Credit Report
These days you just never know who has your information. From getting your card information stolen at the gas station, leaving it out for too long when paying a bill, or having a store’s information breached, no one is safe, especially when you hear about credit bureau’s getting hacked too. If you can pull your credit report, a free copy is offer at least once a year by the major bureau’s, you can at least ensure that all accounts are accurate and up to date so that your credit score is intact and continuing to be on the rise.
Build an Emergency Fund
Much like your credit information sometimes being out of your control, same goes with life and not know what will get thrown in your lap when it comes to expenses. You can be plugging along with a monthly budget and then all of a sudden you get hit with a massive vet bill, auto repair, or even worse, you lose your job, it’s a good idea to have a cushion. If you can put a few months’ worth of expenses into an account, you can keep on hand so you don’t have to put on a credit report when an unexpected charge does occur and avoid going into debt.
When it comes down to it, in order to really free up expenses you need to not only making sure that the money coming in exceeds going out, but that you can continue to reduce monthly expenses to free up even more money. Sometimes you need to make the sacrifices in order to save money, so if it means avoiding going out to eat and opting for grocery shopping instead, or even making the real tough choices and means cancelling cable to get an extra hundred or to, it may be worth it. Just think about how many channels you actually watch anyways, and maybe you can get by with a $10 streaming service or two.
Increase Retirement Contributions
Even though retirement may be decades away, that doesn’t mean you should put off saving until later. The earlier you can start saving the better, with the more opportunity to grow over time. If you even start out small and can grow a percent every year in order to feel less of a burden, it’s better than nothing. You can also check at work to see if there are any company-matching contributions as well to ensure you’re fully taking advantage of the maximum free money.