Personal finance is basically the financial management that an individual or a group family performs to plan, save, and invest money over time, considering various economic risks and various life events. It covers a broad area, including investment, retirement, paying bills, insurance, taxes, and saving for retirement. The word “personal” in personal finance generally refers to these three areas. The other terms in the umbrella are sometimes used to refer to one of them (e.g., retirement), or they are used interchangeably. They are all used interchangeably in this article because they have the same meaning when used in this context.
At the most basic level, personal finance revolves around the individual’s or family’s expectations about their future. For example, should they expect to keep earning an income throughout their retirement, or should they want to rely solely on Social Security as their main source of income? Or, if they expect to have children at some point, should they focus their saving and investing activities on college funds, a home, a vehicle, or something else they can use as collateral for borrowing? And, should they set short-term and long-term financial goals?
As you can see, saving and spending are not always the same thing as personal finance. But, the fact that they are different does not mean that they cannot be integrated into the same plan. In fact, having separate plans is usually a good idea for overall financial planning. Otherwise, saving could take the place of spending, resulting in a loss of overall capital value. Conversely, spending on the other hand could result in excessive debt, increasing the risk of financial failure.
To get started with your personal finance planning process, take a look at your expenses. This includes everything from basic household expenses, such as utilities, to those incurred for business ventures. Once you’ve done this, make a list of everything you have that is not absolutely necessary and also everything you have that may become necessary in the future. For example, if you are about to buy a new vehicle, you might want to factor in the cost of auto insurance.
From this list, you will want to determine your personal finances’ major drivers. These drivers include your assets (which we defined above), income, and liabilities. For instance, if you are going to buy a new vehicle, you might want o include the down payment money that you will need. This will allow you to get the vehicle that you want, even if your credit is less than perfect.
Your personal finance education is a great way to ensure that you are setting aside money for your retirement. You will learn how to save for retirement, as well as learn about effective budgeting. The best part about budgets is that they are very easy to understand and to follow. This is why it is a great way to teach valuable financial lessons to children at a young age. If your child is struggling with budgeting, they can go to their personal finance class and learn different budgeting techniques and strategies.