What Kind of Money Skills Do I Need In The 21st Century?

Learning new money skills for the 21st century is a matter of learning a few technology skills, but mainly learning the financial systems in place to help you make new sources of income and maximize your savings with the biggest interest rates. This is the information age, so 21st century people need to know how to find the best money information and use it to help them plan for their future. The American dream still exists, but it’s just a more confusing dream than it used to be.

The money skills that are going to help you in the 21st century are more evolutionary than revolutionary. Many of them are just add-ons to the 20th century money skills. For instance, it used to be that 401(k) plans were how you saved for the future, and it still is, if you work for a company. But in an age where more people work for themselves or don’t work for one corporation for their entire career, newer retirement savings accounts like Roth IRA accounts are something you need to know about.

Other money skills are amazingly classic. For instance, the most important money skill you can have remains old-fashioned math skills. Math skills allow you to reason through the value of money easier, while also keeping you from getting confused when you read credit card contracts. Calculators and computers may never replace the ability of a person to look at a page of numbers and figure out what it means for their personal finances. But I don’t include “math skills” on the list, because it seems so basic.

Money-Making Tools For Average People

Instead, we discuss ways to get out of debt, set up new sources of income and save for the future. Finally, we end with a discussion of optimism, pessimism and self-defeating behavior. The upshot is that people of the 21st century have all the money skills they need to get by and prosper, or they can learn those money skills without a long process of study. The power to make more money than you spend is yours, and there are more money-making tools for average people in the 21st century than there ever have been before.

Learn About Investment Accounts

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In this way, the 21st century will be a lot like the late 20th century. Whether it’s the old 401(k) or a Roth IRA account, you need to learn about retirement savings accounts and tax-free savings. In the 21st century, life after retirement is likely to continue to grow, so you’ll need more savings than your parents have. Start saving money for your golden years immediately, no matter how old you are.

Master Basic Household Budgeting

A few high schools are beginning to teach one of the most useful skills, something every citizen needs to learn. Too often, people don’t have personal budget skills, which costs them tens of thousands of dollars over their lifetime and often leads them to crushing debt or bankruptcy. Before you do anything, learn how to balance your check book, set a personal budget and fill out a tax form. These sound like basic money skills, but I’m amazed at how many of my friends don’t know one or more of these.

Mastering basic household budgeting allows you to stop getting into debt, pay off your credit card debts and start saving for the future. Most people don’t have a $0 in their bottom line assets. You are either in debt, or you are saving for the future. Before you start to build a residual income, you have to learn the home budget skills that allow you to calculate your debt, figure out a financial plan to get out of debt and begin paying off your creditors. Once you do that, you’ll be ready to master the 21st century money skills that let you save for the future.

Money Skills Needed In The 21st Century To Understand Credit Institutions

Besides learning skills to save money hwere are some money skills needed in the 21st century to understand credit institutions and to avoid falling prey to them.

Understand Consumer Issues

The 2000’s have shown what happens when average people don’t understand consumer issues properly. The government made it harder to declare bankruptcy, while creditors began offering sub-prime housing loans. People who didn’t understand the credit limits they were begin offered, or didn’t understand the details of their home mortgage, found themselves falling into debt traps. Eventually, those debt traps caught the lending housing and the entire economy has been dragged down. People need to learn the basic of debt and other consumer issues, or else they might find themselves in similar situations in the future.

Learn how to read a credit card statement. Learn the basics of consumer rights and exactly what your options are if you get into debt. Learn about getting your credit report and challenging bad information in your credit history. Learn how to resolve billing disputes. And by all means, learn how to avoid identity theft and credit card theft.

Avoid Identity Theft

As the 21st century unfolds, scam artists and online thieves will only get craftier at the arts of identity theft. You need to learn the basic money skills that will help you avoid identity theft through the theft of your credit card information. Learn way to minimize how many online merchants have your credit card information. Eliminate junk mail from your mail box, because identity thieves can use credit card applications to steal your identity.

What Kind of Money Skills Do I Need In The 21st Century To Build New Sources of Income?

Understanding ways to build new sources of income is another vital money skill you need in the 21st century.

Understand the Internet

I’m not suggesting you become a technophobe, though. Understand how the internet can make you money. Learn the basics of e-commerce and how small investments of time and money allows you to open up money streams. People in the 21st century are going to need multiple money streams. Families understand this, because both spouses typically hold full-time jobs these days. But too much of the time, it doesn’t seem enough. Online marketing is the easiest way for an average person to create new revenue streams.

Read about Google Ad Sense and how to build your own website. Read about affiliate marketing principles and how you can become an affiliate marketer. Learn how to become a vendor on sites like eBay. All of these are ways you can open up new revenue streams that don’t take the time and effort of a full-time job. Find the e-business you can envision you owning and start to make that happen.

Wealthy people have known for a long time that investment is the way to real affluence. An investment makes your money work for you, while a job makes you work for your money. Consider this: when you invest time and money into your own website, that website is making you money while you’re at your other job, when you’re having dinner with your family, or even when you’re asleep at night. That is what I mean when I say “another revenue stream”.

End Self-Defeating Behavior

One of the best money skills you can learn in the 21st century is to avoid defeating yourself. When you start to learn there are ways average people can affect their income, you’ll start to realise how much you’ve been defeating yourself all these years. Don’t have a bad attitude and tell yourself, “I can’t succeed.” You can succeed in this 21st century economy, but you’re going to have to make it happen for yourself.

Perhaps the most important skill you can learn is to avoid pessimism and destructive behavior. Nothing on the list above is beyond you to control. You’re a 21st century person, so you’ve lived in a world that’s prepared you to master the skills above.

But to do that, you have to learn basic technology skills and all the other money tools and money resources that are in place to make your money work for you. Eventually, you’ll get out of whatever debt situation you might find yourself in and begin building up your residual income. Eventually, you’ll be reading articles about figuring your residual income.