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It is strange that, considering the vital nature of the subject, many people lack training in managing their personal finances. Personal finance skills can save money, improve savings and increase one’s effective income. Fortunately, it is never too late to educate yourself on the subject. Here are a few quick personal finance tips that anyone might find useful:

Set up an automatic overdraft payment to your checking account from a savings account or line of credit. Many credit unions and banks do not charge for this service, but even if it costs a little it still beats bouncing a check or having an electronic payment returned if you lose track of your balance.

A great way for you to improve your financial situation is to stick to water when you are consuming beverages. Water is one of the best things that you can put in your body and can do wonders for your budget, as you can get this drink for practically nothing.

Some apartment complexes have age restrictions. Check with the community to be sure you or your family meet the requirements. Some communities only accept people 55 or older and others only accept adult families with no children. Look for a place with no age restriction or where your family meets the requirements.

In today’s economy, with so many people out of work or underpaid, it is possible that you will need to live on a leaner budget than that which you have been accustomed. Doing the hard work of cutting expenses and expectations will pay off in the long run as you make it through this recession without the added debt, but saving instead.

Prioritize your spending. Identify essential spending and the optional things that you want. If you plan your purchases ahead of time, the things you want, won’t cut into the things you really need. Before buying something nonessential, take time to consider it carefully and ask yourself if you want it more than something else you’re saving for.

Do not wager any money on any gambling sites online if you are sleepy and/or drunk. This will lead to you making decisions that may not be in your best interest, and you may end up losing your money. If you are not sober and clearheaded, then play a game that does not require an investment.

Many people are having a hard time financially in our current economy. Some can barely put food on the table or pay the electric bill. If you have a utility bill that is in danger of being shut off, try calling local food banks, churches or the Salvation Army. Many of these places have funds set up to help people avoid losing heat or electricity.

Learning to handle money wisely is a great idea for self-improvement. By taking care of finances, a wise person reaps the same benefits that they would by getting a raise. After all, making dollars stretch further is just as effective as making more dollars. Time spent refining personal finance skills is never time wasted.