50 ways to improve your finances in 2015 – Pt 4

~Here are 31-40 hope these tips find you well~

From USNews 12/11/14

31. Live with family members.

The vast majority of college graduates now move back in with their parents, at least briefly, upon graduation. Doing so can make it easier to find one’s financial footing, especially while job hunting or starting to make student loan payments.

32. Look for nonfinancial ways to help family members.

Career advice, networking suggestions and home-cooked meals can be just as helpful to new college graduates as cash. Young adults can also help out their parents with household chores or technology lessons, especially if they’re living at home for free.

33. Just say no.

Sometimes you have to look out for your own financial security before helping others. If giving assistance to struggling family members is forcing you to take on debt or tap into savings, consider politely explaining that you can help in other ways, but not by giving cash.

34. Prepare to help aging parents.

Many 20-, 30- and 40-somethings will need to help their parents as they get older; that might mean providing money, sharing homes or helping with money management. Also increasingly common is sharing a roof with multiple generations, which can help both parents and adult children save.

35. Avoid sharing credit accounts.

While family members often co-sign for loans or credit cards to help each other out, doing so can have complicated financial ramifications. If one person runs up debt on the account, the other person’s credit can be ruined as well. That’s why it’s best to avoid sharing credit accounts.

36. Talk about it.

If you’re not sure whether parents, adult children or other family members are expecting assistance from you, consider broaching the topic. An honest discussion about needs, expectations and limits can prevent misunderstandings later.

37. Live more simply.

The last recession brought frugality back into vogue; do-it-yourself crafts, home-cooking and even at-home haircuts are all cool again. Small lifestyle changes, like biking to work instead of driving, can significantly reduce monthly expenditures.

38. Find cheaper hobbies.

Visiting public gardens and museums, attending community events or going on hikes are among the free or inexpensive activities that can replace more costly ones. Meetup.com groups and local blogs and websites make it easy to explore options.

39. Plan weekly meals.

Food is one of those categories that can suddenly balloon with take-out meals or restaurant costs. To avoid that trap, try planning meals a week in advance, which also makes it easier to repurpose ingredients. One night’s roast chicken can turn into the next night’s pizza topping.

40. Set joint money goals.

If you’re married or living with a significant other, financial planning can’t be done in a vacuum. Setting joint spending goals can help minimize conflicts over daily or weekly spending, even if you decide to maintain separate bank accounts.

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