April is Financial Literacy Month. It’s a time where financial planners and wealth managers encourage people to evaluate their day-to-day spending, understand what is coming in and going out, and plan to ensure their financial future is sound.
Jo’Elda Perez with Vista Bank says small changes can help the average family succeed financially.
“We were at home for over a year with not much entertainment [during the pandemic]. A lot of us subscribed to a lot. Netflix and Hulu and even magazines. Maybe now is the time to start thinking about if you still need all of that. Even if it’s just $10, it adds up,” Perez said.
She stressed financial freedom means something different for everyone, but understanding what it means to you is how you can get there.
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“You have to create passive income. That means saving for events and things that you want to do. For instance, if you want to take the family on a vacation this summer, save for that. The best thing you can do is save the cash and not use credit. That way when you get back, you will only have the fun memories and not a mound of credit card debt to pay off,” Perez said.
She also encouraged against impulse buying. Perez suggested waiting two to three weeks to make that big purchase. If you still want it and have the cash on hand to make it happen, then splurge. Otherwise, wait it out.
“Another great thing to do for yourself, unsubscribe to all the retail emails. The second you see the email and the deal; you want to immediately click on it and buy something. Well if you don’t even know the sale is happening, you won’t be inclined to do that,” Perez said. “At the end of the day, we all need a plan. Our goal is to save and have that financial freedom we all want to have, but we have to do it the way that works best for each of us.”