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6 Awful Truths About Personal Finance

With the weakening economy, people find they need to pay closer attention to their personal finances. As they begin to tackle their finances to get them in order, they usually come across some truths that they really don't want to accept. The main reason is that these truths mean that the each person must take more responsibility and make hard decisions that they would rather leave to others.

By understanding these inconvenient truths, you place yourself in a position to better deal with your money in a positive way. Here are a few of the most common of those awful truths.

6. You can't have everything you want.

Whine, complain and throw as many tantrums as you want, but the words of your parents when you were a kid still apply now that you're an adult. Even though every commercial you see will tell you that you can have everything you want, the hard truth is that you can't.

In order to stay out of debt, make sure your finances are healthy and reach your financial goals , you will need to make difficult choices about where it's best to spend your money. That means giving up some things you may want. If you don't, you'll end up with maxed-out credit cards and years of slavery to your debt.

It may not make you happy, but the sooner you realize this truth, the better off your finances will be so that you don't end up working while all your friends are retired. This will also help you prioritize your spending on what is really important to you.

5. Financial institutions are not your friends.

Banks, credit card companies and even investment firms are there for only one purpose: to make money off of you. No matter how much they tell you that they have your best interests at heart, they are not your friends and they will charge you with any fee that they think they can get away with. It's common for banks to add "courtesy overdraft protection" to your banking accounts, which can cost you hundreds of dollars and fixed-rate credit cards are only fixed until the credit card issuer decides they want to change the interest rate. (Don't miss " 10 Banking Moves You Should Make Today")

You must always look out for your own interests and make sure that these financial companies are not trying to nickel and dime you., because they have no problem changing the rules in the middle of the game -- especially if they feel they are not getting enough of your money. So next time you listen to their pitches, remember that their primary purpose is their bottom line and not yours. Use their financial services if it is advantageous to you, but never become complacent or you will find a lot of your hard-earned money flowing to their pockets.
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