Take Advantage of a Raise

Hey, nothing like a little extra coin to make the sun shine a little brighter.  Instead of succumbing to lifestyle creep, let’s see what to do about getting ahead.

  1. Splurge wisely. If a reward is in order, make sure it’s oriented more toward a onetime event, like dinner out at your favorite restaurant versus getting a new car subject to years of debt payments.
  2. Beware lifestyle creep. You can get stuck in lifestyle creep even if you don’t develop new luxury habits or get a new car or house.  Even going out more often can start to add up.  Getting a new outfit can overflow into lifestyle creep if it goes on to become a whole new wardrobe.
  3. Go for the sure return. Want to make a 100 percent safe return on your money of 18% – 21%?  Pay off your credit card debts.  Hard to believe the interest rates could be that high, but they are.
  4. Develop a safety net. Save up at least one month of expenses as a safety net.  If you’ve already paid off all debt, continue to expand your safety net to six months.
  5. If your employer has an investment plan with an employer match, make sure you’re maxing out that opportunity.  Again, it’s 100 percent certain return on your money.
  6. Invest in real estate. Had to put this one in there, I’m a landlord after all.  Obviously, properly addressing this topic is beyond the scope of this blog entry!
  7. Give Back. Make a charitable donation or help someone out in need.  It’ll make you feel good too.

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