November is Financial Literacy Month! Now is the perfect opportunity to brush up on your personal finance so you can feel empowered and confident with your financial decisions. If the topic of finance scares you – don’t worry, you are not alone. A recent survey studying the financial literacy of Canadians has found only 43 per cent of men vs. 31 per cent of women say they are financially literate. When you analyze the findings of the survey – it paints a grim picture in terms of how comfortable Canadians are with their financial decisions.
Although Canadians feel a little out of place about their finances, there is always room for some improvement, nothing is written in stone.
“If everyone scored a perfect 10 on every personal finance test, Financial Literacy Month would be a moot point. The reality is we need Financial Literacy Month and now is the perfect opportunity to embrace your finances,” says Jeffrey Schwartz, executive director, Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada.
“The more you know about your personal finance, the better you will be at keeping and maintaining a budget so that you can manage your debt,” says Schwartz.
Instead of being scared of your finances take charge. The best way to take charge of your money is to accept your financial fears for what they are and do your very best to overcome them.
Understand your finances
Seriously ask yourself, “Do I know where my money is going?” If you have no idea where your money is going, now would be a good opportunity to get a budget tool. A budgeting app can show you your spending habits and offer suggestions to help you to save.
Set goals for yourself
Once you have a clear understanding of where your money is going, start to set small attainable goals for yourself. Save a small amount from each paycheque, pay off a small debt, save for a night out. You can start small and once you achieve your goal; make adjustments.
Make a commitment to learn
Get to know what the top personal finance bloggers are blogging about. Read their blogs on a weekly or monthly basis. You will not only get to learn about new topics, you will get loads of free advice too.
Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada would like to help Canadians overcome their challenges with financial literacy. If you live in Toronto or the GTA, for the month of November, ConsolidatedCredit.ca will hold free financial literacy seminars every Thursday from 5 to 6 p.m. at our head office in Toronto. Topics are Identity Theft, Budgeting Made Easy, Holiday and Vacation Budgeting. Spaces are limited and will be awarded on a first come, first served basis. To register email: [email protected].
If you need more guidance about your finances, that’s what we’re here for! Let’s face it; it can be tough to understand all you need to know about personal finance. And if no one taught you the importance of budgeting, you may feel a little overwhelmed with your debt management. It is okay, you are not alone. Believe it or not almost 50 per cent of Canadians are living paycheque to paycheque. And sometimes it can get difficult to manage. If you are tired of shouldering a heavy burden of debt, seek the comforting advice of a trained credit counsellor. You can call one at 1-888-294-3130 or go online to complete a free debt analysis.