Well, the holiday season is over and the Christmas trees are all coming down. The gifts have been unwrapped. The children are back in school. What many of us are left with are New Year’s Resolutions and the hopes that 2017 will be our best year ever. And many of those hopes may involve our finances. As with any goal, financial improvement in 2017 is going to come with a little work, so we’ve put together some of our hottest tips for single moms who are looking to make some changes in the new year.
- Take a look at your credit report. Many of us know that our credit report is important, but did you know it can be used not only for mortgages and car loans, but future employment, credit card rates, and terms on insurance policies? Our credit is important, but often the busyness of life prevents us from keeping up with what our report says. Perhaps you’ve had a set-back with your credit due to some poor decisions or a divorce or medical issue and it is overwhelming to even look at it. Order a free credit report online and begin somewhere. There may be errors on the report that, once rectified, can immediately boost your score. There are also ways to begin the discussions with old creditors on payment arrangements or reduced payoffs.
- Create a budget and stick to it. When we attempt to lose weight, what do we do? We watch what we eat and exercise. It’s pretty simple, right? The problem with many of us is that we get excited for about 32 seconds, then the real work begins! The same is true for your budget. Once you’ve created a budget on what you can spend and what you owe, stick to it in 2017!
- Save. Save. Save. There are hundreds of ways to save. Consider couponing, skipping the local coffee shop, or the daily work lunch out – just to name a few. Even putting a small amount of money away each pay period can bring a huge sense of satisfaction and comfort.
- Plan for Christmas now. Christmas may seem like light years away, but it will be upon us before we know it. And many lose the joy of the Christmas season, because we’ve stressed ourselves out about what we’ll buy and how we’ll pay for it. Let’s begin now with a small Christmas budget that can be used this coming season and alleviate that stress early.
The Life of a Single Mom is a nonprofit organization committed to seeing no single mom walk alone. The organization serves single mothers of all stories and ages with a variety of programs, including support groups, life-mapping, resource referrals, online chats, home improvement projects, and more. For more info, visit www.thelifeofasinglemom.com