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There are many ways to improve your financial situation. Most of them require you to make some changes in your lifestyle. Some of them you have to set up in the beginning and closely monitor regularly.
Caring for your financial standing is not being materialistic. When buying stuff and owning them makes you feel better that is when you become materialistic. But when you are simply concerned about your financial condition, that is actually being wise. You want to monitor your finances because it dictates how you will be living your life.
We believe that money is not everything. However, it does contribute to your happiness - as soon as you have enough to pay for your basic needs at least. After that, it does not contribute to your happiness level. The bottom line is, money can provide you comfort. If you want that comfort and happiness, you have to strive to have financial security.
But did you know that apart from financial security, there are two other securities that you need to take care of? If you really want to solidify a good financial standing, you may want to ensure that all three will be closely monitored.
Job security provides consistent cash inflow
The first factor that will help secure your financial standing is your job security. Obviously, to be secure about your finances mean you need a steady source of income.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics revealed that in January 2014, the number of nonfarm employed individuals rose by 113,000. But despite that, the unemployment rate still remained at 6.6%. The highlights of the statistics from the BLS.gov revealed the following:
There are 10.2 million unemployed individuals as of January 2014.
The unemployment rate decreased by 0.6% from October 2013 to January this year.
The unemployment rate experienced a little change for the following: men (6.2%), women (5.9%), teens (20.7%).
The long term unemployed (jobless for more than 26 weeks) is lower by 232,000 and is now at 3.6 million. They comprise 35.8% of the total unemployed.
Overall increase in the civilian labor force is at 499,000.
Total employment based on the household survey is up by 616,000.
Part time employees went down by 514,000.
2.6 million individuals are jobless yet not counted as part of the unemployed - because they have not looked for work 4 weeks before the survey.
837,000 are considered as discouraged workers - jobless individuals that were not looking for work because they think there is no job for them.
These statistics show us that the job market is still not in its best shape. How can you get a job despite a tough job market? And for those who have a job, how can you keep yourself in it?
Here are some suggestions that we have for you.
Concentrate on your strengths. This can be your skill, employment history or your academic background. By playing to your strengths, you will have a higher chance of being qualified for the job that you are applying for.
Look beyond your job responsibilities. Do not make the mistake of focusing only on your job. You have to look at the overall condition of the company. If it is going down, you have to be aware of it. You want to work hard so you can help keep the company afloat.
Be a teamplayer. When you are already employed, you want to make sure that you will get along well with your peers. Someone who is popular in a positive way in the office usually catches the eye of the employer.
Constantly improve your skills. It is always a good idea to invest in yourself. That way, your employer will always look at you as an asset in the company.
Income security supports your finances even if your job failed you
Despite all of these, know that no one is indispensable. Once you have a job and you have worked on your job security, it is time to move on to another factor that will help solidify your financial standing. We are talking about income security. Some people mistakenly think that this is the same as the previous. You may have job security but not income security.
Income security is when you have set up more than one source of income. That way, you have a lot of resources coming in. If one of them fails you will not be left without a monthly cash inflow.
Nowadays, relying on one income is no longer enough - especially for those who have a family to feed. Nothing is certain and relying on the salary you get from your day job usually falls short. It may be able to finance your basic needs but it may not be enough to give you extra for savings. The BLS.gov mentioned how the weekly wage in the first quarter of 2013 averaged at $994. That is only $3,976 a month.
In a separate new release from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median weekly salary of the nation’s employed is at $786 during the fourth quarter of this year. That means it went down from the first quarter. This is based on the compiled data from 104.8 million full time workers. It is still 1.4% higher compared to the previous year though - but it is still low considering the cost of living today.
These statistics tell us that earning from more than one source is no longer an option. It is growing to be a necessity. Here are some of the reasons why this is true.
Unemployment. Based on the data we discussed earlier, we still have a tough job market. The high number of discouraged workers is really alarming. If you end up losing your job, it is hard to assume that you will get a new job immediately.
Increasing cost of medical care. Another reason why you want income security is because of the health care costs. Sickness can strike anytime and you want to be prepared to pay for any treatment that you or your family may need.
Education is expensive. The BLS website also showed the differences of the salaries of non-high school graduates ($468), high school graduates ($648) and degrees holders ($1,219). The salary of college graduates are double that of the high school graduates and below. This statistic should convince you that putting aside money for your kid’s college education is a must.
There are other reasons to work on your income security but the bottom line is to ensure that you can maintain or improve your financial standing. You will live a less stressful life when your income is much higher than your expenses.
Your options to build up this security is to invest your money in stocks and bonds or set up a passive income business. Here is a video from National Debt Relief that has some suggestions about how you can tap into other sources of income.
Financial security defines your overall financial situation
When you have both job and income security, you can now complete the deal by working on your financial security. You may be asking, what else can you do to set up your future right to be financially stable? You have to grow your savings.
Most people think that having a stable job and more than one source of income is enough. It is not. You have to start building up your emergency fund to make sure that you will be prepared for any event. Think about it. If you lose your job and your income sources, your savings will help you cope with that.
Here are some tips to help you work on your financial security.
Set up an emergency fund of 6-9 months worth of monthly expenses.
Put aside money for your retirement and other major life events: parenthood, college, etc.
Keep your debts low. Use your credit card to keep your credit score high and pay it back immediately.
Plan for big expenses - home, new car, vacation, etc. Save up for it - or at least a big portion of it. You are better off skipping on a loan and wasting your money on interest.
Work on these three securities and you will have the best financial standing - not only for today but for the future.