Recently the weather gave us notice that Nature was about to bring about a season change. Like it or not, ready or not the seasons will change. According to wise King Solomon in Ecclesiastes, everything under heaven has a season.That would include the American and global economies. And importantly, seasons change.
The economy's season is changing. Possible recession, the impact of tariffs on prices, and stagnant wage growth. In the words from HBO's Game of Thrones, "Winter is coming."
Part of financial well-being is "the capacity to absorb a financial shock." The key is your CAPACITY. Here are four strategies to do now to increase your capacity.
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Okay the BK is discharged. Now let's start rebuilding your credit score. This not a quick fix. It also assumes you have effectively dealt with whatever caused you declare bankruptcy whether it be situation, lifestyle, or lack of financial capabilities.
This strategy is front-loaded with a long term payoff because of the BK credit restoration timeline. A BK can be on your credit report for up to 10 years. The good news is that its impact lessens on your credit report the further removed it is from the present. You may be eligible for a mortgage or auto loan in much less time if your other factors are strong.
Here are the six steps to rebuild a perfect credit score:
1.Be wary of credit repair companies.
2. Start now. Be patient.
4. Check your credit reports 90 days after BK and then at least annually thereafter.
Financial capability is the internal capacity to act in one's best financial interest, given socioeconomic environmental conditions. It therefore encompasses the knowledge, attitudes, skills, and behaviors of consumers with regard to managing their resources and understanding, selecting, and making use of financial services that fit their needs.
Consumers can experience financial well-being—or a lack of it—regardless of income. It’s a highly personal state, not fully described by objective financial measures. Instead, well-being is defined as having financial security and financial freedom of choice, in the present and in the future.
If you are paying credit card interest on consumables like gas, food, entertainment or travel, then you are hustling out of the world backwards.
The good memories that linger are often corrupted by payment stress. It is so much better to come back with just the memories and not the bills. Stop paying double digit interest on your contributions to the sewage treatment plant and carbon emissions.
Credit card interest rates are usurious compared to other forms of borrowing. Current rates range between 13.12% and 22.99%. Carrying a balance on a credit card is not is good for your money. You can end credit card debt, if you do the right things based on your circumstances.
You can start by resolving to use ONLY cash for consumables from now on.
Cash limits your spending. It makes your spending more intentional and purpose driven. The key is to not take more cash than you need. Overspending will create budget shortfalls elsewhere.
Cash is any of the cash instruments. That would be debit and gift cards (no overdrafts allowed.) A well managed credit card. That is a credit card that has the statement balance paid in full every month by the due date. And of course, actual dollars and coins.
Going to cash for consumables may require a behavior change. Behavior change can be hard if you don’t frame it in your mind right. Think of it as a benefit and not a sacrifice. It is you not setting yourself up for failure. It also eliminates committing future earnings to service debt for transient purchases.
So go to cash for all consumables going forward. It may be tight for a while. You will use cash to take care of your current fuel, entertainment, and food needs. You will have to service and payoff the current debt, also.
Until then you are going to have to find creative ways for your family to conserve, entertain and eat. Some options include short term use of a food bank. Leaving your vehicle parked. Selling some of your stuff. Finding a paying side hustle. Netflix and chill. What are your strategies?