If someone were to ask you if you want to make more money, you would say yes, right? Most people would, regardless of their financial standing. But at what point do you have to accept the fact that you have to earn more money for your financial well-being? Here are five signs that you don’t earn enough, and how you can solve this problem.
1. You Can’t Save Money
Living without savings is a silent killer of your budget. While you probably won’t miss savings during the average week, you will notice their absence when an unexpected expense comes along. You also won’t be able to afford large expenses or experiences, like a vacation.
2. Every Unexpected Expense is an Emergency
Borrowing money in an emergency is necessary sometimes. You might empty out an emergency fund on an urgent auto repair, only to need more cash to cover an unexpected prescription. Short term personal loans are there to help with tough financial situations like this when you something unexpected and essential costs more than you have on hand.
However, if every unexpected expense warrants borrowing money, you might not be saving enough. Short term personal loans are designed for extenuating circumstances when your emergency fund is low — not to replace your emergency fund altogether.
3. Others in Your Role Earn More Money
Let’s move beyond your personal budget for now and consider what others in similar roles earn. Pay transparency laws in the US makes it your right to discuss and disclose your pay with other people at your work. Talk to them about what they’re making to ensure no one is unfairly under-paid for their labor.
If no one else holds a similar role in your department, go online to research the average income of your position. If you are below this, it may be time to schedule a talk with your employer.
4. You Only Pay the Minimums on Credit
Another subtle sign you don’t get paid enough is how you pay off credit cards and lines of credit. If you can’t make more than the minimum payments, increasing your income can help you manage this debt. Until you get a raise or accept a new job, try to use your credit cards and lines of credit sparingly. When possible, only ever charge things you know you can pay off entirely by the due date.
5. You Can’t Keep up with Bills
This last sign is perhaps the biggest red flag of them all. If you can’t cover your essentials each month, there’s a good sign you don’t earn enough money for your lifestyle.
Plenty of people live beyond their means, even if they bring home a six-figure salary. It can happen by keeping up with the Joneses, getting a huge mortgage, and leasing a luxury car. Here, income isn’t the problem; spending habits are. However, if you struggle to keep up with a modest lifestyle while following a tight budget, you need to earn more money.
What to Do if You Need More Money
Once the idea that you don’t earn enough in current roll sinks in, you have two options.
1. Ask for a Raise or Promotion
Prepare for your meeting by researching salary data and listing your accomplishments to prove that you deserve to make more.
2. Look for a Higher-Paying Job
Start the job search by looking at what your current experience and training offers. If these features limit you to lower income brackets, research what you need to do to level up your experience and skills. This might involve taking night courses or volunteering.
Realizing you need to earn more might feel uncomfortable at first, but this is the first step toward financial security. Know your worth and get that money.