Everyone expects to be broke when they are first starting
out, but it can be a devastating source of anxiety trying to pick up the pieces
of one’s finances at middle age. It can be done however. Here are five ways to
reboot your finances at midlife.
1. Make Like A Cucumber
The important thing here is to stay cool as a cucumber.
Hand-wringing and worrying yourself sick will accomplish nothing as far as your
financial future goes. Instead, roll up your sleeves and get to work. Be the captain of your own ship and steer for prosperity. You’ll find that once you
are actually doing something to improve your situation, it gets easier to do
more. And the rewards will give you a tremendous sense of pride and confidence
as you move forward.
2. Dust Off That Talent
It’s time to earn a little extra income. You’ll be surprised just how far a little can go these days. So if you’ve got a secret talent you’ve always wanted to develop, now’s the time. Create and sell greeting cards, plan your neighbors’ gardens, build a friend’s deck. Take a good long look at what you’re good at, and find a way to turn it into extra money. Every bit helps.
3. Take it to the Bank
The bank just might be your best friend when you’re starting over. Sure, it’s hard to imagine any bank being friendly these days, but it’s true in this case. While you’ve still got some money to work with, pay off any small loans or debts you’ve been carrying when times were good. Also, speak to your bank about combining any lines of credit you might have into one lump sum with a manageable interest. Contrary to popular belief, banks want you to be able to pay your debts and will work with you to keep you solvent.
4. Cut it Down to Size
We’re talking about trimming the fat here. You’re at a time when every penny counts, and you’ve got to save everywhere you can. Start making lists of your expenses and determine what’s essential and what is pampering. Cut the non-essentials out of your budget. You’ll live. And you’ll make your money go a lot farther.
5. Letting Go
When trying to start over with your personal finances, you need to identify where you’re money is being spent. A lot of times, cash is being doled out to help a child through college or aging parents, etc. Stepping back from these obligations can be extremely difficult but, facts are facts, if you’re on the brink of ruin, then you simply have to think of yourself for a change. Cut those apron strings, and let your children take up most of (if not all) the financial slack as they start out. And let Mom and Dad know they’ll be on their own for awhile until you get back on your feet. They will understand and support you.
Guest Blogger, Andrew Salmon, an author and freelance writer, writes for the life insurance website LifeCover.ca and is based in Vancouver, BC.