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4 Things you need in your Financial Plan

Whether you're saving for a house, investing for the future, or just hoping to become debt-free, having a financial plan is one of the most important steps to a secure financial future.

A financial plan is the backbone of financial security, and is key to helping you better understand your financial goals, and how to achieve them. Financial planning is more than simply drawing up a budget in an attempt to address short-term finances. Rather, it's about understanding the long-term consequences of investing and various other financial actions you take.

There are four essential components integral to any financial plan. Having a strategy for each of these areas will help ensure you are making the best financial decisions for yourself and your family.

Firstly, it's important to have a comprehensive debt management strategy. If your debt is unmanageable, it can become a major obstacle on the road to financial freedom. It's necessary to address any outstanding debts; whether in form of student loans, credit cards, or other loans. One viable way to tackle this is by consolidating your debt so that the amount to be paid is more manageable.

Secondly, having an emergency fund is important should the need arise. An emergency fund is essentially a reserve of saved money that can be used during unexpected or unfortunate circumstances. Having that additional security can help ease any financial burden, preventing you from turning to credit cards in a time of need.

Thirdly, having an investing strategy is key to making your finances work for you. This can look like anything from setting up automatic investments, to learning more about the stock market and other financial vehicles. It's also wise to set some long and short term goals when it comes to investing. Having goals can help you stay focused and motivated.

Last, of course, comes setting and tracking your financial goals. While it may be easy to set financial goals, actually achieving them is often more difficult. To turn your financial goals into realities, break them into smaller actionable steps and track your progress to keep yourself on track.

Financial planning is a process that can look different for everyone. You may work with a financial advisor, or you may tackle the process



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