Life is full of surprises, both good and bad. Even when you create a budget and financial plan, life has a way of getting in the way. That is why it is so important to have a back-up plan wherever available to help make those moments less impactful.

Even if you are incredibly disciplined with how you spend and save each month, you can still wind up hurting financially without a back-up plan. Here are a few steps for creating a financial back-up plan.

  1. Track your expenses. Always know where your money is going down to the penny. Don’t leave anything unaccounted for. This will help you visualize what you need to save each month to account for income interruptions or emergencies.
  2. Predict future expenses. This can be a little difficult, but children are a great example. Think of education, weddings, cars, and so on. Know what you are going to have to pay for in the future.
  3. Consider the unexpected. Cars break down. Health bills are the norm. Try to plan ahead for things like that.
  4. Get insurance. Insurance may cost you a little now but can benefit you in the future. Have insurance to cover everything – you, your family, your properties, your health, and so on.
  5. Look at your current situation. Having a good back-up plan also means knowing where you stand now. Take an assessment of what you make now, where your money is going, and where you can improve your situation. Planning means taking a good, hard look at all areas of your finances.
  6. Know where your documents are. You wouldn’t believe how much improper filing can impact financial futures. Know where your bank books, property deeds, titles, and insurance policies are. You can talk to a professional if the task is too much.
  7. Good financial habits. Good finances means having good habits. That means saving from each paycheck, living within your means, and tracking expenses. Start with some good habits and you will be surprised to see how your savings grow.