Handling your own finances is a tricky subject for a lot of people. Although there are a lot of excuses that can be made, the reality is that each person is responsible for themselves and their money. This article will shed some light on things you need to know to handle your money in the best way possible.

Make sure that you are collecting all of the tax credits to which you are entitled. Look out for the following tax credits: Child Care Credit, Child Tax Credit, Lifetime Learning Credit, Earned Income Credit and Hope Scholarship Credit. Visit the IRS’s website for a complete list of tax credits that you may be eligible for.

When working with any personal finance company, watch out for scammers. As a general rule of thumb, if any offer sounds too good to be true then it usually is. Just read all of the fine print in the contracts, and if they do not offer any contract at all completely avoid their deals or promotions.

A good rule of thumb for savings, is to put away 10% of your income each payday into a savings account. Make sure that you don’t have a debit or credit card linked to this account, as it is too tempting to spend it if you find something you can’t seem to live without.

Don’t throw out all of your old tissue boxes – turn them into something useful again. For example, you can keep your old tissue boxes and keep your grocery bags inside. The box makes a useful dispenser, while keeping your grocery bag clutter at bay. Place your grocery bag filled tissue box under the kitchen sink for ease of use.

A major indicator of your financial health is your FICO Score so know your score. Creditors use the FICO Scores to decide how risky it is to give you credit. Each of the three major credit bureaus, Transunion, Equifax, and Experian, assigns a score to your credit record. That score goes up and down depending on your credit usage and payment history over time. A good FICO Score makes a huge difference in the interest rates you can get when buying a home or car. Check out your score before any major purchases to make sure it is a true reflection of your credit history.

Stick to your goals. When you see the money start pouring in, or the money flying away, it can be hard to stay the course and stick with what you originally planned. Before making changes, keep in mind what you really want and what you can really afford; and you’ll save yourself money.

If you are a member of any groups such as the police, military or a car assistance club, ask if a store provides discounts. Many shops offer discounts of 10% or even more, but not all advertise that fact. Prepare to show your card as proof of membership or give your number if you are shopping online.

Not only are older appliances less efficient at performing their job, but they can also be a significant drain on your monthly energy consumption. Newer high-efficiency models are a wise investment that can save you money and ensure that your home is a safe environment in which your family can eat, live, and play. Replace microwaves every decade, washers and dryers every thirteen years, and stoves and ovens every fifteen years.

There are a few things that it is easy to have made it to adulthood without being taught much about. Personal finance is one of those things. If you can use the advice that was written in this article, you will be one step ahead in the game and can take some control over your money.