8 Personal Finance Tips from Successful People

1. “If you use a credit card, you don’t want to be rich.” Mark Cuban

Credit card debt wreaks havoc on your cash flow. If you only pay the minimum due, the interest you pay on your credit card balance will trap you in debt potentially for years. You will not be able to meet your savings goals. Use your credit card sparingly.

2. “…I had learned the hard way that you can ruin your credit in one seemingly responsible afternoon, but rebuilding it takes years.” Sophia Amoruso, founder of Nasty Gal and GirlBoss Media

It’s easy to forget about your budget. You’re out shopping, and you see those sales. You think that it makes sense to buy because you’re going to save money. But, if it wasn’t in your budget, then you are using money that was supposed to go somewhere else, like paying off debt or to your emergency savings account. If you buy everything with your credit card and can’t pay off the balance in full when the bill arrives, you risk ruining your credit score.

3. “Always make sure you know how much you have and how much you are in debt.” Jeff Bussgang

Creating a budget and sticking to it is critical to financial health. The first step to getting rid of debt is to organize all your accounts. Once you know how much you owe and to whom, you can create a debt reduction strategy that will succeed.

4. Eliminate small, unnecessary purchases. “I know there are some people out there that say you shouldn’t worry about the $5 latte, but the more I think about it, cutting out the $5 latte was a good place to start.” Chris Reining who retired at age 37.

It’s easy to lose track of all the cash you spend every day for things like lattes, snacks and other takeaways. If you are trying to increase your savings, the first place to begin is to cut out those beverages you buy on the go.

5. “Automate your financial life. When it’s automatic, you can’t fail. That includes automating all your bills, including car payments, mortgage, and credit card bills.” David Bach

Pay yourself first. This is much easier to do when you automate your financial life. If your paycheck goes directly to your bank account, and from there is allocated to bills and savings, you eliminate the temptation to use the money for other things. You stick to your financial plan, meet your objectives, and achieve financial freedom.

6. “Not having a financial plan IS a plan—just a really bad one!” Alexa von Tobel, founder, and CEO of LearnVest.com

Once you establish short-term and long-term financial goals that are based on your life dreams, you can articulate a strategy for how you will achieve them. Living without a financial plan is one sure way never to have money to finance your dreams.

7. “Treat your money like you could lose it all tomorrow.” Kara Goldin, founder, and CEO of Hint Inc

This is particularly sage advice when you come into unexpected money, like a bigger tax refund than you expected, a raise or bonus, or even a cash gift from someone. If you have the mindset that this “windfall” could disappear tomorrow, you will make better decisions about how to use it.

8. “The better you are at delaying gratification and the overall happiness of spending, the better off you’ll be with your long-term financial well-being.” Alexis Ohanian, co-founder Reddit

Billions of us are on social media in these days of COVID-19. But this can be a danger zone too. Brands have made it easy to purchase straight from their social media feeds. Think twice before clicking. Can you afford it? Is it in your budget? Will you still meet your savings goals? And, most importantly—do you need it right now?