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Do you want to become a financial success? Becoming successful in your finances isn’t easy, but it’s also not so difficult that you can’t get there. While it will take some effort to realize your dream, building wealth doesn’t have to involve drastic changes to your lifestyle. All it takes is a few small, deliberate moves for you to reach your financial goal. Here are five small money moves that can change your financial life for the better.

1. Save your raises

Did you just get a big raise? Congratulations! Now act as if that raise never existed. If you were able to manage before the raise, behaving as if you don’t have the money shouldn’t be too hard. After you get that first fat check, set up automatic transfers so the additional earnings go straight into your savings account. Before you know it, you will have built a healthy savings account that will get you through your next financial storm. Also think about using your raises to beef up retirement savings. However, if you were struggling before the raise, you may be better off working on devising a budget so you can keep a close eye on what is coming into and going out of your household.

2. Make extra debt payments

Debt has a way of creeping up on you. You make one small charge here, and another small charge there. Before you know it, you’ve accumulated thousands in credit card debt and you don’t see a light at the end of the tunnel anytime soon. If you’re trying to dig your way out of a debt mountain, making minimum payments won’t cut it. It will take forever to pay off your debt and you’ll pay a ton of interest in the process. It will be necessary to make an additional payment or pay a little more than the minimum each month if you want to crush your debt. And once you finally pay off your debt, you can use that money to pay off another debt.

3. Boost your financial education

Learning shouldn’t stop once you graduate. There’s a wealth of information out there. One money move that can turbo charge your finances is taking the time to improve your financial knowledge. This could be through personal finance books, workshops, or webinars. Sharpening your financial skills will assist you with making better decisions with your money and help you obtain the knowledge you need to grow your wealth.

When it comes to educating yourself, one thing to remember is that you need to be careful about the source of your advice. Not all financial experts have a certification or license, and some of them may unknowingly give poor advice (even those with certifications could have an off day). Be sure to always check financial information with a trusted financial professional.

4. Adjust your spending habits

Another small way to get in charge of your money is to change the way you spend it. For example, instead of going out and buying the latest phone or this season’s outfit, try waiting until the price is reduced or on sale (few people will notice you’re wearing an outfit from last season, trust us). Exercising a bit of self-control can yield great results. Also make an effort to control your spending by taking a list with you when you go shopping. This will help reduce the urge to buy whatever catches your eye.

5. Give back

While it’s important to save as much as you can, it’s also important to think of others. If you’re able, set aside some of your money to donate to a worthy cause. This will instill a sense of gratitude and hopefully encourage you to become a better steward of your income. However, if you can’t afford to give money, you can also donate your time.

This article was written by Sheiresa Ngo from The Cheat Sheet and was licensed from Newscred, Inc. Santander Bank does not provide financial, tax or legal advice and the information contained in this article does not constitute tax, legal or financial advice. Santander Bank does not make any claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained in this article. Readers should consult their own attorneys or other tax advisors regarding any financial strategies mentioned in this article. These materials are for informational purposes only and do not necessarily reflect the views or endorsement of Santander Bank.

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