A little bit of money can go a long way, but we realize that everyone may not have a spare $1,000. So here are a few ideas on what to do with $500. You can definitely make a financial impact. Here’s how:
- Get caught up on utility bills. This year we had a long, cold winter. If you still have a lingering heating, electric or other utility bill or feel like you are playing catch up in this area, pay this bill off now and start fresh.
- Car maintenance/repair. Take your car in and have everything checked out (especially the tires). If there is anything that may cause problems down the road, have it fixed now. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, especially when it comes to keeping your car on the road.
- Take care of any physical maintenance now. Is it almost time for new glasses, contacts or dental work? Go ahead and take care of it. Even if you have insurance, you may need a procedure (especially in the dental area) that is not covered by insurance.
- Get professional financial advice. The services of a financial advisor used to be only for the wealthy set. But now you can make an appointment with an advisor to set up a plan for the future and get your current financial situation accessed, even if you aren’t ready or can’t afford to become a regular client.
For leads, check the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA). These planners are fee only, they don’t accept commissions and pledge to act in their clients best interest at all times.
- Set up travel plans. Waiting to the last minute to book a vacation could cost you a pretty penny. But do it right and you could make a great getaway on $500 or less. Start by visiting websites that offer airfare & hotel packages, also look for all inclusive deals and resorts that may have weekend specials.
- The old tried and true. You can always sock away the extra $500 in your emergency fund and be better prepared for a rainy day.
Jennifer Streaks is a financial columnist, author and commentator. Follow her on twitter @JStreaks and check out her other financial tips on her website at www.JenniferStreaks.com.