Happy New Year everyone! Are you heading down to the gym to get physically fit? We need to lose those pounds we piled on during the holidays, right? But what about your financial fitness? Are you struggling financially month after month? Financial fitness is the new American dream — and it is attainable for everyone. Be sure to print this out and post this column somewhere in your home as a reminder to get financially fit this year. It is about time to put some muscles back in your money.
Out with the old
As we toss out the Christmas trees and put away holiday decorations, we are getting rid of things that do not reflect the spring and other seasons of the year. In 2011, many families got rid of their large, gas-guzzling cars in favor of economically sound cars. Homebuyers are staying away from the supersize houses that will cost too much each month and settling for homes with an affordable price tag.
In reality, we are getting rid of bad investments that are financially draining. In 2012, it is time to get rid of even more bad investments. Is your house payment draining your pocketbook every month, leaving you house poor and broke? Is your house a bad investment? If you have paid too much for your home, it is a bad investment. You are throwing money at a house you will never own. What should you do?
In with the new
Getting financially fit is about money — having money that is. How does having money in the bank sound to you? To have money left over in the bank at the end of the month means we need to stop spending money on bad investments. So, the new American dream is about living a comfortable life within your financial means. Living this way will put the muscles back in your money. Imagine that your money has muscles: It gives you power to invest in your retirement, fund your children’s educations and much more. The road to financial fitness in 2012 starts with getting rid of bad investments.
How do I let go of bad investments?
You know what they are. You know which bills cause the biggest financial strain at the end of every month. For most homeowners, it is their house payments that are causing them to be house poor and broke every month. For some renters, it is their spending habits that are causing them to be poor and without a savings plan. Be honest with yourself and identify these bad investments and habits in your life. Then, picture yourself without them. Picture a clean bill of financial health. Imagine having a savings plan. Imagine having that peace of mind that you can retire and live well without any financial worries.
What is a good investment?
A good investment is one that you buy low and you can sell high for a profit.
The road to financial health starts with a simple decision: Identify the bad investments that will not perform financially for you and make the decision to let go. Bad investments are investments that leave you poor and broke month after month. You don’t need to feel stuck. There are better investments out there. The sooner you let go of the bad investments, the sooner you can start investing in smarter investments.
Financial fitness starts with a decision: You have been thinking about it, now is the time to act on it. The sooner you let go of a bad investment, the sooner you will have room for the good investments.
Next week: Short sale now and buy immediately — no need to rent!
Annie Christian is a real estate broker and owner of The Annie Christian Real Estate Group. She helps with everything from buying and selling to foreclosure and short sale. To submit a question, call 351-5117. Her website is www.anniechristian.com.