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Liz Weston. 9 Money Things You Need To Know

To assess your physical health, your doctor needs to know certain numbers, such as weight, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels.

Similarly, you need to know certain numbers to control your own financial health, including:


Your after-tax income is your gross income minus the taxes you pay (federal, state և local income taxes plus Social Security և Medicare taxes). If you receive a stable salary, you can use your last payment button to calculate this figure. Otherwise, check your latest tax return.

Divide your income after your taxes by the number of hours you worked to earn it. It gives you an idea of ​​how much time you spend buying something. For example, if you earn $ 20 an hour after paying taxes, something costs $ 100, you have to work five hours to afford it. Knowing this indicator will help you make a more informed decision about money.

Your income after tax is also the basis of a 50/30/20 budget, expense plan that helps you balance your current expenses, debt payments, and savings. This budget proposes to limit your basic or mandatory expenses – shelter, utilities, transportation, food, insurance, minimum loan payments – childcare needed for work – 50% of after-tax income. Ants’ losses, such as vacation ճաշ eating out, make up 30%. This leaves 20% savings լրացուցիչ for additional debt payments.

Mandatory conditions can help you survive a job loss or other financial setback. You can also use the limits to determine if you can afford a new loan. If the payment pushes your liabilities above 50%, the answer may be no.


You can access your Social Security statement, including your life history, by signing up at socialsecurity.gov/myaccount. Increase your annual income plus any other income you receive, such as gifts, inheritance, investment income, pensions, under-the-table earnings, or government benefits. (Ratings are good).

Now calculate your net worth by deducting what you have (your debts, including loans, credit card debt պարտ mortgages) from your property (your assets such as your home, pension accounts, investments և savings). Compare your net worth with the income of your life to see what you have done with the money you have.

There is no objective evaluation system. Like the annual salary indicator, this exercise is designed to make you more aware of what you are doing with your money. If you think you need to show more for the money you receive, consider trying to save more of your income.

Full retirement age և Socially anticipated benefit

Your full retirement age is the age at which you are entitled to 100% of the social security benefits you earn. If you apply for benefits before that age, your coupons will be reduced forever. If you defer your application until you reach full retirement age, you may be eligible for deferred retirement credits, which increase your benefit by 8% each year until you reach the age of 70, when the maximum benefits are exhausted.

Full retirement age is gradually increasing. For those born between 1943 and 1954, your full retirement age was 66. After that, the full retirement age increases by two months a year. For people born in 1955, it 66 66 և two months. 66 և four months for people born in 1956 և etc. The full retirement age for those born in 1960 և later is 67 years.

To better plan for retirement, you need to have some idea of ​​how much you can expect from Social Security. You will find the estimated benefits in your Social Security statement. (As long as Social Security is in short supply, the system will still raise enough taxes to pay at least 75% of the promised benefits, even if Congress does not work to save its finances.

Pension savings rate

What part of your income do you save for retirement? Can your savings plan allow you to retire whenever you want? (An online pension calculator can give you a globe score). Anything you can do to close this gap can help you have a more comfortable retirement.

Credit points և debt-to-income ratio

You will have a better idea of ​​how lenders view your loan applications if you know your credit score և debt-to-debt ratio. (Good credit can save you money in countless ways, from paying interest to insurance premiums). Monitoring at least one of your points will allow you to see your progress in building credit և warn of issues such as theft.

To calculate your debt-to-income ratio, combine your monthly debt payments with your current rent or mortgage եք compare it to your monthly income. Debt to income ratio of 36% or less is considered good by most lenders. A ratio of more than 50% can make it difficult to get a new loan. If your balance is between the two, paying off some of your debt can help you get the loans you want (և help you sleep better at night).


This column was provided to the Associated Press by NerdWallet, a personal financial website. Liz Weston is a columnist for NerdWallet, a certified financial planner and author of “Your Credit Unit”. Email: lweston@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @lizweston:


My Social Security Account https://www.ssa.gov/myaccount/

NerdWallet Budget Calculator http://bit.ly/nerdwallet-budget-caclulator


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