Close your eyes and think back to high school. No matter if those were the best years of your life or if you were more of a wallflower, you were likely told that you needed to get good grades- but why? Was it because you knew that you needed a particular GPA in order to get into a specific school? Maybe, but a lot of high schoolers just know that it’s generally a good idea to get high marks because it’s going to give you more options down the road (not to mention personal development, growth, yada yada). And in the same way that not all students know exactly what college they’re going to attend, not everyone has figured out what their big financial goals are going to be this year. But it’s about moving in the right direction with your finances, getting that momentum started even if the end goal is subject to change. And developing the right financial habits will help you start moving in the right direction, even if you don’t know what your ultimate destination will be. That’s what we’re talking about today- the essential habits for financial success!

  • Insurance – Trusted Choice is a great resource to help you find (relatively) local independent agents who can also shop for the best rates. Added bonus: if they focus on a specific state, they’ll also know all the nuances since insurance requirements vary by state which can help you save and get the best coverage for you!
  • Budgeting – Start a budget, or at the very least begin tracking with YNAB or Mint. Depending on your personality, you may not need to know where every cent goes every month, but it’s good to establish a baseline if you’re just getting started.
    • As we’ve talked about before, here’s a stripped down template of our family’s budget in Excel. It may not make sense for some, but I hope it can get most started down the right path! (once you’re in Google Drive, click: File -> download to get the file on your computer)
  • Debt – While we do want you to have a general aversion to mindless consumption, not all debt is dumb: we recently talked using debt to catapult your finances.
  • Credit Card Tool – Looking for the right credit card for you? Then check out our new credit card tool that’ll help you to easily filter through all the cards based on your preferred airline, whether or not they have an annual fee, or simply by the cash back offer! Just toggle the sliders and you’ll know which card to consider.
  • Newsletter – Don’t forget to sign up for the best personal finance newsletter in all the land! It’s completely free and something we create to help you along your journey to financial freedom. It drops every Tuesday morning and you can always unsubscribe if you don’t dig it!

During this episode we enjoyed a Liquid Hop Magma by Mutation Brewing- a big thanks to Jack and our friends there at the brewery! And please help us to spread the word by letting friends and family know about How to Money! Hit the share button, subscribe if you’re not already a regular listener, and give us a quick review in Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts. Help us to change the conversation around personal finance and get more people doing smart things with their money!

Best friends out!

* Advertiser Disclosure: How to Money has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. How to Money and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers.
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