5 signs you’ve got bad financial habits – and what to do about them


October marks Stoptober month – when smokers up and down the country are encouraged to quit the habit for good.

But, whether or not you’re a smoker, why not also consider quitting any nasty financial habits you’ve picked up?

“This Stoptober is a great opportunity to stub out your worst financial habits,” says Sarah Coles, a personal finance analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown.

Not sure you even have any? Well, some of those habits might have become so ingrained that you don’t even realise you have them, notes Sarah. So what are the warning signs and how can you quit bad financial habits for good? Here, Sarah shares her advice …

1. The symptom: Casually dipping into debt

You don’t have to go terribly overdrawn for particularly long for this to start making a big dent in your finances.

How you can cure the habit: If you regularly dip into your overdraft, the answer lies in drawing up a household budget, and identifying the regular costs you can cut.

This may mean shopping around on essential bills and groceries, or cutting out those things you don’t get much value from, such as gym membership or expensive media packages.

If you’re a repeat offender, consider setting up text alerts in online banking, which will text you if you’re running the risk of going overdrawn.

2. The symptom: Only paying the minimum amount back on your borrowing

The minimum payment required on your credit card can lull you into a false sense of security.

But by paying it down at a snail’s pace, you could be racking up shocking interest charges.

How you can cure the habit: If you have expensive debts like credit cards, it’s essential to pay them off as quickly as possible.

If you have a significant balance, it may be worth switching to cut interest payments in the interim.

However, if you switch, …read more

Source:: Evening Express – All articles

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