Budgetgirlife is a blog about a twenty-something-year-old who is living life to the fullest without breaking the bank. But along this journey, I’ve made a couple of mistakes and I want to share with you the good and the bad ones.
BEST FINANCIAL DECISIONS:
- When I was attending college I was lucky enough to have financial aid. We all know students who had financial aid, always had leftover money. Sure, I bought myself a couple of ultra music festival tickets here and there. BUT, I did save some money to buy myself my first car. THANK YOU FINANCIAL AID!
- A tax refund is always the best time of the year am I right? Especially when I was in school and I would receive a big return. Every year when I received the refund I would put away 50%-70% into my savings account.
- Opening up a savings account and treating it like a sacred forbidden space that was not to be touched. I highly recommend to open one up if you don’t have one. If you do have one, treat it as something that you can not touch but you CAN put money into it. If it weren’t for this method of saving I would not have been able to visit Scotland and move out.
- Pay my car out! I was hesitant about paying off my car because I did not want to touch my savings account, but saving $300 a month is definitely worth it! Sometimes we are scared to sacrifice some money because we don’t see a result immediately... but in the long run, it will definitely benefit you.
WORST FINANCIAL DECISIONS:
- Owning credit cards in my early college years. Sure I have a GREAT credit score now but I had a lot of debt in my college years. When I was working at Best Buy I was making crappy money and I wanted to buy myself nice things. Credit cards were my only resort and I fell into debt at a young age. If I could go back I wouldn’t have gotten any credit cards until I was at least 21-22 years old.
- Buying a used car at some sketchy place on 8th street. PLEASE JUST GO TO A REGULAR DEALERSHIP! LOL. Sure you’ll find a cheap car and low payments on 8th street, BUT, your car will need a bunch of maintenance and you end up spending more money than you needed. I suggest to just save up for a used car at a reliable dealership that can provide a carfax report.
- I once applied for a loan at Miami Dade, which I intended to use for a car (this was before I got my car with financial aid money). After applying for the loan I totally forgot about it! SOMEHOW that loan was used to pay for a couple of my semesters (remember, I already qualified for financial aid which was FREE money for school). IDK how this mix up happened but I ended up paying for school with a loan that I didn’t even need! This was a lesson to pay attention to what you get yourself into. READ BETWEEN THE LINES, READ CONTRACTS, PAY ATTENTION TO LOANS.
- Relying on credit cards to purchase things you want and not need. I’ve learned my lesson and now I only use my credit cards when its something I absolutely need. I don’t even carry them on me so I am not tempted to use them. Before I would always have one in my purse and when I went to the mall I would use it without hesitation. SELF CONTROL, put them away lol.
Overall I definitely have gained self-control and I am in a better place than I was 6 years ago. When it comes to making great financial decisions you always need to think about the long run. At the moment you can enjoy a purchase but how about a year from now? It's great to live in the moment but some decisions require a bit more thinking before taking action.
- Bring the credit card usage to a minimum
- Open a savings account
- Put money into your savings account every paycheck
- Do some research before making a BIG purchase
- Put away at least 50% of your tax refund
HOPE YOU ENJOYED THIS! and that it will bring some clarity into your financial situation. Let me know what were some of your best/worst financial decisions!