The older I get, the more obsessed I am becoming with personal finance hacks and ways to be better with money.
Is it just me or is this a part of the whole adulting thing that we all struggle with?
Personal finance can seem daunting sometimes. There’s money, then there’s debt, there’s responsibility, and then this thing called life.
It all sometimes seems like a very twisted puzzle.
In this article, I’m outlining 20 of the best personal finance hacks you can begin implementing as soon as today.
In our deep dive into the best personal finance hacks, we’ll look at:
- Money saving personal finance hacks
- Money making personal finance hacks
- Income personal finance hacks
- Investing personal finance hacks
- Budgeting personal finance hacks
Money-Saving Personal Finance Hacks
1. Make A Commitment To Save
Easy as it may sound, this is one of the steps we miss the mark on the most.
Make it a habit to stay on top of where the money is going. Keep track of ancillary or miscellaneous expenses that just seem to show up along the way. Movie nights, uber rides, social gatherings, etc
While all of these play a part in your entire the entire make up of who you are, they should be kept in check. They are not part of the frugal life hacks or money hacks that will ultimately fuel your financial goal.
Have constant reminders alerting you of your reason for saving in the first place. Does the family need a new vehicle or are you simply overdue for a vacation?
Saving for something of value, especially for the whole family, keeps your motivation high.
2. Rome Was Not Built In A Day
Be flexible with your saving schedule. Flexible and consistent.
It is sometimes extremely difficult to set aside a fixed amount of money each month towards a particular goal.
Bite off little chunks. Go for the quick wins and celebrate them with your spouse or partner. Let the kids in on the party if they’re old enough to understand. Make an event out of your wins, then scale to the higher ticketed items.
Setting priorities is key when it comes to incredible personal finance hacks. It helps you stay organized when items are laid out in order of priority.
Couples who make the habit of setting and sticking to priorities as finance hacks report the process as having a great impact on overall objectives.
4. Take A Money Saving Challenge
That’s right. Take a money saving challenge – with yourself.
Over a course of say, 90 days – commit to saving “x” amount of money for “y” purpose and keep a journal to record progress. Fellas, don’t get scared or stop reading all because I said “journal.” Spreadsheets work just fine too.
The longer the challenge goes, the more fun you have with it. It’s not quite the Ice Bucket challenge, but it is nonetheless something you can Vlog/Blog on or simply report or share with friends on social media.
Whatever keeps you motivated, incorporate that into your challenge.
Money challenges not only help you save money, but they instill a level of discipline into your core. This new found discipline is something you can now deploy into other personal finance hacks and ideas.
Money Making Personal Finance Hacks
5. Let Your Money-Making Bring You Fulfillment
Change your mindset about making money. Consider pursing something in which you find fulfillment – but also pays you.
For many, that could very well be the job or career you already find yourself in. For some others however, it could mean you have to make a complete change, difficult as it may seem.
If that’s you, my guess is that I’m not telling you anything you didn’t already know.
What’s true for all of us in terms of best personal finance hacks, however, is this…the moment you change your mindset to serving others with your gift, passion, skill set or expertise, it changes from a job or career, to something that fulfills you.
It turns out the more fulfilled you are, the greater the likelihood you’ll make more doing what it is you do.
6. Consider A Side-Hustle
Still one of the best personal finance hacks or money hacks is to simply have more of it.
Sounds easy enough, but how exactly? Consider starting a side-hustle to supplement your current income.
And if you’re one of the techy types, check out Guru.
All of these platforms allow you to showcase your skills and really crush it on the side. You can also check out personal finance hacks on Reddit for even more inspiration on finance and side-hustles.
7. Not Sure What To Launch Into? Start A Blog
Blogging is something I am obviously partial to and biased about. It is also one of the very best personal finance hacks.
It is no wonder I highly recommend starting a blog of your own.
Like mentioned above, a blog can be your first avenue to doing something you’re truly passionate about and that will bring you fulfillment. You get to write about topics that interest you, but also have the power to help countless others.
If you’re in doubt about what personal finance hacks would suit you, really consider starting a blog. It’s one of the things you can do with very little cost involved.
Income Personal Finance Hacks
8. Diversify Your Income
If you’re not doing this today, I urge you to really give it some thought.
There’s so much up-side to diversifying your income and having multiple income streams for you and the family. On the flip side, I cannot imagine the stress of job loss on a single income family, the pain of sickness, or any other unforeseen events.
The benefits of diversifying is that it’s not only a money hack, but also gives you the freedom to live your best life without the fear of losing out on one income stream.
9. Learn To Give
Giving on it’s own may sound counter-intuitive but stay with me on this one.
When you learn to give and realize the joy you bring into the lives of whomever it is you choose to give to, you find out quickly, that the true joy is not theirs, but yours.
There is a welling up inside you when you learn to let go and sow into the lives of the less fortunate with whatever little or much you do have.
As a personal finance hack, giving also teaches you to do more with less.
- Plan out your giving in advance. You have more control over the causes you wish to support. Always have a store-house for those opportunities that present themselves.
- The accountant in me, of course, has to remind you that there are tax benefits to giving.
- Prioritize your giving. When you do, it is a truly generous act and one that brings you inexplicable joy and fulfillment.
Investing Personal Finance Hacks
Phil Town shares his Personal Finance Hacks in the short video below…
10. Learn To Invest
Investing to some can be quite scary and intimidating. Nine out of 10 millionaires say investing is a major part of their portfolio. I say we take a cue from them.
Start with whatever retirement savings your job makes available. A true personal finance hack, however, would be to max out your retirement savings annually. You get a much higher return when you factor in the tax savings.
A great way to get your investments going is by starting small. A robo-advisor like Betterment lets you open up an account with no minimums and very little fees (free for the first year).
With Betterment, we are able to save for large purchases on auto-pilot since the contributions are automatically deducted from our account. You can set up your deductions on a weekly, monthly, or bi-monthly schedule to fit your particular needs.
Using a robo-advisor is an great way to up your investing game and is one of the best personal finance hacks in itself. You don’t have the pressure of trying to figure things out.
Start small and let the machine algorithms go to work for you based on answers you provide in a questionnaire and your specific investment goals.
11. Understand Your Asset Allocation
This is particularly important if you are doing any type of investing on your own.
In his book “I will Teach You To Be Rich“, Ramit Sethi suggests strongly that your asset allocation and plan takes precedence over your actual investments.
If you make a 50/25/25 decision, i.e., 50% Stocks, 25% Bonds, and 25% diversifiers, this is your plan. Pay attention to the plan and how your plan fits into your overall investment picture.
You will also need to know or understand how to re-balance your portfolio.
Re-balancing is key to sticking with your asset allocation objectives.Again , if you are doing any solo investing, you’ll need to understand these concepts.
12. Hire a Professional CFP®
When you find yourself in a position to afford it, hire a professional.
Certified financial planners are excellent resources to help prepare you for the financial road ahead. Do your due diligence and find the right professional for you.
You’ll want someone who truly plays the long game and puts their clients before their selfish need for quick cash.
Find a professional who is not afraid to tell you what works and what’s best for you… even when you may not want to hear it. These are invested CFP’s with a long term plan to keep you and your family fiancially secure – Andrew Mitchell CFP®
Budgeting Personal Finance Hacks
13. Name Your Expenses
It becomes very difficult to explore best personal finance hacks if you can’t identify your expenses.
Know your expenses by name, and list them out.
- Food and Groceries
- Mortgage or monthly rent
- Auto Loan Notes
- Credit Card Payments
These are true living expenses and must haves. Your list would, therefore, would not include buying a new pet parrot, for instance.
Leave some buffer by slightly over-estimating items with fluctuating numbers each month.
This is good practice and is a great money hack in itself.
14. Create A Budget
Create a feasible budget, and tailor it around your monthly income and expenses.
Creating a budget is not only a personal finance tip, it’s a powerful tool that helps you stay on track with your finances monthly.
No list of 100 personal finance tips will be complete without being headlined with the need to create a budget. Your budget shows you exactly where the money goes, and helps you plug the leaks each month.
15. Set Up An Emergency Fund
This thing called life happens and you ought to be as prepared for it as humanly possible.
There are medical expenses, job losses, bereavement, car and home repairs, unexpected school supplies/expenses, etc.
It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when.
Setting up that emergency fund is a critical step and personal finance hack to help keep from digging into further debt.
Unsure where to begin? A good rule of thumb is to have three to six months of expenses sitting in an emergency fund.
16. Make Tax Projections
Make tax projections and ensure you are tapping into every tax benefit and recourse available.
Speak to a Certified Public Accountant or a Certified Financial Planner and tax strategist to get you benefiting from this personal finance hack.
17. Pay off Higher Interest Loans First
Personal finance guru Dave Ramsey proudly teaches the snowball method. Personally, I prefer the avalanche method.
The numbers simply do not lie. It’s one of the very best personal finance hacks when trying to climb out of debt.
Pay off the higher interest debt first. You’ll find over time, you will potentially save thousand in interest and fees.
If you prefer Dave’s snowball method where you attack the smaller debt first (regardless of interest rate) and go for the bigger fish next, that works too.
Most important thing is to pick a debt payoff plan, and stick to it.
18. Have Set Goals
Just saving for the heck of saving can be gruesome and you fall off the wagon very quickly.
Not all of us are good at saving. It’s really not the easiest thing to do – setting perfectly good money aside.
Having set goals gives your saving a real purpose and fuels you with motivation to keep saving monthly.
Some good savings goals to have included:
- Saving to buy a new home
- Saving to take the family on a vacation
- Putting enough away to start a business or blog (and quit your job)
- Saving to arrive at a set figure – to have in emergency funds, for example
Regardless of what the goal is, have one. Goal-setting helps you track progress and you symbolically can see the light at the end of the tunnel.
Personal Finance Hacks Wrap-Up
When it comes to personal finance tips, you make the rules.
Decide the best personal finance hacks for you and deploy them immediately. There’s so much misinformation available today and unfortunately, folks looking to make a buck off you.
Do your research, talk to a excellent certified finance professional and you’ll be on your way to financial independence. It all begins with that first step.
Dive into the comments below and let me know if you have already, or would be adopting any one of these personal finance hacks.