You would have thought that now we are well and truly in the 21st Century, life would be a whole lot easier, right? After all, there have been so many tech advances that make our lives easier and bring us closer to each other, most everyday problems are now not as big as what they once were. However, that’s not the case with money, especially for families. Tech hasn’t solved some problems and has even brought along some new ones.
So, which financial problems and woes are the big concerns for families in the 21st Century? Here are a few of the main ones and what you can do to ease them for you and your family!
A Shrinking Income
Sometimes, we experience money problems that are a result of factors outside our control. One of these that quite a few families face right now is a shrinking income. Since the economy crashed way back in 2007, markets have slowly picked up. However, some industries still aren’t doing quite as well as they should be and inflation is still quite low. And that has a direct effect on wages. Over the past decade, wages have been rising – but only extremely slowly. Some industries and sectors, especially the public sector, have even had their wages frozen. That means workers have not had a pay rise, and therefore their wages are no longer in line with inflation. If you are a family that has been hit hard by these low wages, you are probably wondering what you can do. Firstly, you might want to see if you can find a second income; something you can do alongside your regular job. For instance, many people now turn to blogs as a regular source of income. Secondly, it’s worth asking for a pay rise. After all, if you don’t ask for something, you won’t get it! If that doesn’t work, you might find that it is worth switching jobs and moving to a better-established company that pays a fairer wage.
Increased Family Expenses
Unfortunately, everyday expenses and outgoings haven’t behaved in the same way as wages over the past ten years. They have been affected in the complete opposite way and have slowly been growing! Because of this, lots of families now complain that they feel a pinch in their budget. They don’t have as much money to spend on things like groceries, car repairs, and energy bills. But these are things that they can’t live without. So, how do people manage to get by? More and more families are resorting to taking out loans to ensure they can survive until payday. If you feel you need to get some extra cash in this way to cover yourself, there are some safer options. For example, it’s not a good idea to take out a payday loan as they often come with very high interest. However, you’ll be fine taking out a specialist loan, such as affordable title loans to help cover car expenses. Just make sure you are totally able to repay this money once repayments start. Otherwise, you could end up in some bother!
If you do have some money left over at the end of the month, you will no doubt want to put it to one side for a rainy day. However, it’s no good just leaving it in your savings account. Interest rates haven’t been too high over the past few years, and the interest on the majority of bank accounts isn’t enough to help your money beat inflation. If you want to make sure your money grows at a steady rate and beats inflation you need to place it in investments. There are various things you can invest in, from property and stocks and shares to gold and funds. These often make much higher returns than the money that is just left in bank accounts. Even high-interest saving accounts are no match to other investments! However, you need to be aware that some investments are a lot riskier than others and every single investment comes with the possibility that you might lose some money. For instance, stocks, shares, and funds will go up and down over time depending on how the economy is doing. But, if you leave your money in for long enough, it should increase. So, you just need to be aware that investing isn’t completely risk-free. But to get the biggest returns, you can’t play it safe with money!
Hopefully, this blog post has given you all the info you need to end these 21st Century money woes!