Finding Your Financial Legs (Part 2 of 2)

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Finding Your Financial Legs (Part 2 of 2)
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If you read my last post about Pittsburg Steelers running back Rashard Mendenhall and his incredible legs, you’ll recall I posed a question…do you have financial legs?

For many athletes and entertainers, their greatest financial asset is that which they use to perform their craft. For a singer, it’s their voice. For an athlete, such as Mendenhall, it’s his legs.

What about the rest of us? What’s our greatest financial asset? House? Savings? 401K? It may not be what you think…or maybe it is. What if our greatest asset is not the asset itself but our ability to make that asset work for us?

A runner with nice legs is just that…a runner with nice legs. He may pick up a commercial for the local gym or become the MVP of the flag-football team, but without conditioning he will never make it to the Big Leagues and so his legs will have never worked for him!

Finding your financial legs is all about making your money work for you.

Are you training and conditioning them? Are you reading, studying, questioning, implementing?

If your financial legs need a little conditioning, here are a few simple steps to get you started:

  • Make a list. Get a small notebook and write down everything … EVERYTHING!! you spend this week, including date and amount. (morning coffee, chips from the vending machine, kid’s lunch money, cable bill)
  • Add it all up. At the end of the week tally your expenses. Was it what you thought it would be?? Repeat steps 1 and 2 next week.
  • Shop around! Pick one expense you know you are paying too much for and search for a better deal. Cable, internet, phone (cell and home) & insurance are great places to start.

This one really works. We were able to save over $1000 on my dad’s homeowners insurance just by quoting other companies (be sure to check coverage limits, many companies increase your limits (and your price) every year you renew ‘to keep up with inflation’). When comparing quotes, make sure the coverage on the quote is the same as your current policy. This can be changed later.

  • Have a latte free day! Forego one discretionary expense this week (movies, eating out, salon/barber shop) and put that money in a savings account. The trick here is to physically put the money into a separate account. Watching your money grow is a powerful motivator!
  • Ask and ye shall receive! Find your statements (credit card, utilities, cell phone, cable, medical bills). Got a late fee? Finance charge? Call customer service and ask them to remove it. If you usually pay your bill on time (late fee) or in full (finance charge), most companies will remove these fees at least once a year.  Even if your record is not so stellar it never hurts to ask, especially if you:

have a lump sum you can apply to the bill

you’ve lost your job and the interest rate / fees are making it difficult for you to keep up, but reducing them would allow you to make timely payments

Just remember, you have not because you ask not. The worst they can tell you is no…which is what you have anyway if you don’t ask!

So go ahead, find your financial legs and we’ll see you in the Big Leagues!!


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