Learning to track one’s personal finances is an important process, no matter how much money is involved. If you think you do not make enough money to consider organizing your finances better, think again! Good personal finance skills are perhaps most important when your budgets are tight and you need to get the most out of every penny.

Success starts with managing money well. You need to invest your profits as necessary in order to build your business. If you are planning for growth it’s okay to put profits into capital, but you have to manage the profits wisely. You should always have a standard set for what you plan to keep as profit, and what you will reallocate into capital.

Always consider a used car before buying new. Pay cash when possible, to avoid financing. A car will depreciate the minute you drive it off the lot. Should your financial situation change and you have to sell it, you might find it’s worth less than you owe. This can quickly lead to financial failure if you’re not careful.

Avoid eating out to save money. Creating meals at home can save you hundreds of dollars every month.

File important financial documents where you can find them quickly when needed. This includes loan and mortgage documents, tax returns, insurance policies, and bank statements. It is stressful enough to suddenly need one of these documents without the added anxiety of not knowing where to find it. To be extra safe, keep copies of essential papers in another location, such as a safe deposit box.

Loaning money to friends and family is something that you should not consider. When you loan money to someone that you are close to emotionally, you will be in a tough position when it is time to collect, especially if they do not have the money, due to financial issues.

Staying as responsible as possible, is a key trait in maintaining a solid bank account. When you have a checking account, make sure that you never take more than you have. This can lead to overdraft fees, which can add up over time and have an impact on your overall balance.

Keeping track of your finances is a vital part of knowing where you currently stand. Apply for paperless statements, which will allow you to view all of your debits, credits and miscellaneous transactions online. This is very convenient and can allow you to maximize the organization of all of your accounts.

Eliminate unnecessary credit cards. You do not need to have a multitude of credit cards open on your credit report. This costs you a lot of money in interest fees and drags down your credit score if you have them all above 20% of the available maximum balance. Write the creditors a letter and pay off the balance.

Make your personal finance record-keeping more efficient and easy to read by marking debits and payments in your check registry using a bold, red ink pen. This will make you less likely to overlook withdrawals and debits and will also allow you to quickly verify all expenses as you balance your checkbook.

Consider banking with a credit union. In today’s difficult economy, many banks are eliminating free checking accounts or adding new fees and charges. Credit unions, however, are non-profit, so they usually charge lower fees and may offer lower interest rates on credit cards as well, allowing you to keep more of your money.

These are just a few of the steps you can take to improve your personal finance skills. Trying some of them out will probably save you money – and once you see results, you will want to find out more. Keep researching money management and see just how well you can handle your personal finances.