With the warmer weather upon us, we begin to think about that summer vacation we want to take or maybe making some renovations around the house. One thing most people don’t think about around this time of year is their finances. Already into the second financial quarter time is beginning to get away from us and can quickly put us off our financial track for the year or land in credit debt.
If you haven’t already, commit to a new financial plan for the year 2012. Whether that means simply creating and following a budget, saving more money or getting out of debt, make a plan to change your financial habits now before another year passes you by.
Home renovations; we all need them to some extent, but they can be pricey. Spring is the best time for sales at retail chains. Many products needed for home renovation products can be purchased at the bigger chains for cheaper than a local store. Major renovations that may require the use of financing options should be considered carefully. If the renovation isn’t crucial to maintain the integrity of the home, try waiting to save up half the money before you finance the cost of the project. Also, look for green or energy efficient products, which can be deducted from taxes at the end of the year.
Going on a summer vacation? You still have time to start saving for your trip to pay in cash. Too many people pay for their vacations using credit, often leading to a debt burden that can take a year or more to pay off. A $2000 family vacation can take an average of 15 months to repay and will cost hundreds in interest payments. Look online for hotel and airfare specials now, many tourist spots offer promotions for booking early. Consider driving to your destination or staying local to avoid the costs of airfare or expensive tanks of gas. Many cities offer great family events and activities starting as early as May.