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Healthy Financial Habits

Good Bad Habits

Healthy Financial Habits by Zacks Investment Research

The simple truth is that financially successful people tend to do things that financially unsuccessful people don't. From attitudes to actual actions, financially successful people develop certain habits when it comes to managing their money, which separates them from the masses of people who often struggle with money issues their whole lives.

Save Part of Your Income

Human beings are creatures of habit. Many people live from one paycheck to the next, because they have a habit of spending everything they earn. But financially successful people develop a habit of paying themselves first. Each time you earn money you should make it a habit of depositing at least 10 percent of it in a bank account that is solely designated for wealth accumulation. As this money begins to pile up, you may be tempted to spend it. Don't. Consistently saving at least 10 percent of your income and resisting the urge to use that money for anything other than sound investments is the most important healthy financial habit to develop. This habit lays the foundation for other healthy financial habits.

Control and Eliminate Debt

Make a habit of listing how much you owe and to whom with a grand total amount. As you make a habit of tracking your debt each and every month, set a goal to eliminate all your debts. The habit of tracking your debts and setting a goal to eventually eliminate all of it one day will cause you to pay closer attention to how much your monthly payments are reducing the loan amount. This habit will make you less inclined to accumulate new debt, and you will be motivated to pay off what you owe sooner than the normal repayment schedule.

Control Your Expenses

Make a habit of budgeting your income. You should have a plan for how you will spend the money you earn before you receive it. Your spending plan would include the money you intend to save automatically and enough to make all your debt payments and cover the household bills. The habit of budgeting your income -- and knowing where every single dollar goes -- will motivate you to cut costs wherever possible in order to increase the amount of discretionary funds you have left after meeting your monthly financial obligations. Proper budgeting also will help you avoid bouncing checks, which can be an expensive mistake.

Set Goals and Deadlines

Set goals and deadlines for achieving the financial success you are striving for. Make a habit of setting short-term and long-term goals for the amount of money you save and the amount of debt you eliminate. Find some way to celebrate your big and small victories.

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