Being an independent woman means taking control of your finances.
It’s something that’s easy to say, but not necessarily to do. How do you go about it? Where do you start? How do you know you’re on the right track?
For Women’s month to answer these and other questions, Marlies Kappers, chief marketing officer at financial services provider, DirectAxis, got together with some expert colleagues and listed six things women can do to get closer to independent financial security.
1. Don’t rely on other people
Educate yourself. There’s plenty of easy-to-understand, free information available online including the DirectAxis website. Once you have read up and decided what works for you, you can check your ideas with financially smart friends, family, someone you respect or a registered financial adviser. Getting some input from people with knowledge and experience is sensible, but remember, this is your plan.
2. Set some financial goals
These could include improving your credit score by paying off loans or other debt on time. There are a lot of online tools that you can use to check your credit score.
3. Spend less than you earn
The first step to being able to achieve this is to draw up a budget. List all your monthly income on one side of a piece of paper and all your expenses on the other. Be as accurate and honest as you can. Then see where you may be able to make some savings – identify unavoidable expenses such as mortgage repayments and avoidable expenses such as your daily cappuccino.
4. Don’t let investing scare you
Slow, consistent investment over time can often deliver better results than an aggressive approach.
5. Don’t spend to make yourself feel good
You’ll ultimately get more satisfaction from being financially secure do focus on than rather than spending money recklessly.
6. If you make a mistake, learn from it.
Do not allow a few mistakes prevent you from pursuing your financial goals. We are all human, and sometimes emergencies put us off track but do not let that make you quit.
And if you need even more inspiration to take the first step, remember what Beyoncé once said, “I truly believe that women should be financially independent from their men. And let’s face it, money gives men the power to run the show.”