You’ve worked so hard and have finally paid it all off. It’s time to celebrate!! But before you get too carried away, remember that more work can be done to ensure lasting financial freedom.
What have you learned?
Although financial freedom is a huge accomplishment, what mistakes have you made and have you learnt from them? Think of how you got into debt and analyze shortcomings.
Do you have an emergency fund?
If your answer is no, it’s time to create one. An emergency fund is important and can prevent you from falling back into debt. It ideally can cover three to six months of expenses.
How’s your retirement savings?
All that extra cash flow that you do not need now that you’re debt free can go into a retirement savings account. It’s important to start saving for retirement as soon as you can. It can be an employer plan like a 401(k) or IRA, but contributing as much as possible to your retirement savings ensures that you have enough money during retirement. A financial planner can help you crunch some numbers in greater detail.
Look at your budget
After your emergency fund is looking good, and your retirement savings has been accounted for, you’re left with your budget. A close look at your budget lets you evaluate your cash flow. You may be able to plan a vacation, or pay your car off faster. Adjust your budget as necessary to avoid overspending.
Ease your way back into credit
Your credit score probably took an unfavorable turn while you were in debt. Showing that you are responsible with credit can improve your credit score. Start rebuilding your credit by focusing on taking out good debt such as a mortgage when your budget allows. Make sure to pay off your bills in time. You can also use various website to track your credit report.
Finally, don’t forget to take time out to celebrate your new debt free life. This is a huge accomplishment and you should be proud. Moderation is key in staying financially fit.