Deal with Your Debt. Few people get far in adulthood without accumulating some form of debt: credit cards, student loans, car loans, and mortgage payments are common. In fact, debt can be a good thing (who has the money to buy a house outright?), but the key is to use them wisely. Credit cards and other forms of debt can be an essential part of your financial toolbox, but you must exercise care when using these tools. Understanding the difference between good debt and bad debt will go a long way in making sure you create and maintain a good credit history.
Step 3: Set your goals. Before you start sifting through the information you’ve tracked, make a list of all the financial goals you want to accomplish in the short_ and long_term. Short_term goals should take no longer than a year to achieve. Long_term goals, such as saving for retirement or your child’s education, may take years to reach. Remember, your goals don’t have to be set in stone, but identifying your priorities before you start planning a budget will help. For example, it may be easier to cut spending if you know your short_term goal is to reduce credit card debt.