Managing Your Money: Tools & Tips
When it comes to managing your money, keeping track of what you have, what you need, and what you owe can sometimes mean a lot of sleepless nights. At First Commonwealth, we can help you build greater confidence about managing your money more efficiently check-to-check, month-to-month. So you can budget for the things you want, have enough for the things you need, and sleep a little better. Our money management tools and resources can help you get on your way to more restful nights.
Money Management Tools
A budget is great way to get your money management under control. Whether you want to use paper or software, the envelope system or debit cards only, here are a few things to keep in mind when approaching your budget planning:
- What is your current income? Be sure to include all sources of income — but only the money you’re sure you’ll receive. Don’t forget to subtract taxes and other deductions.
- What are your monthly credit obligations? The amount you owe on credit cards, monthly car payment, student loans and other monthly payments should not exceed 10 to 15 percent of your take-home pay.
- What are your monthly rent or mortgage expenses? If your rent is more than 30 percent of income, it may be hard to afford a down payment on a house. Keeping mortgage payments (and other expenses of owning a home) to under 30 percent is also a good idea.
- What are your monthly credit and mortgage expenses? Total rent or mortgage payments plus your credit obligations should not exceed 35 to 45 percent of monthly income. Keeping these under 30 percent is a good goal, with 20 percent to housing and 10 percent to other credit obligations.
Money Management Resources
- Track your expenses consistently with our Spending Diary and Budgeting Sheet
- Use mobile and online banking to monitor your balances
- Set up alerts to avoid overdrafts within mobile banking, online banking or using the SecurLOCKTM Equip app
- Understand your paycheck so you know what to expect each month
- Forecast your income and expenses by age
- 10 questions to see if your spending is out of control