Personal Finance is More Personal Than Finance

- Hi, I'm Jean Chatzky, and this is your Savvy Money Minute.

- [Narrator] Brought to you by Credit Union of Southern California.

- Buy or rent? Pay off debt or build an emergency fund? The trouble with money questions is that the answer usually is, it depends, why? Money rule number one. Personal finance is more personal than finance. Here are three techniques for making good decisions. First, the what's the worst that could happen test. Paying down debt is good, but what happens if you actually need your emergency fund? Will you be able to get by? Second, the life map test. Only you know your lifelong hopes and plans. Is now the time to take advantage of low mortgage rates? Could be, but how long will you be at your job or living where you do now? Expect to be transferred or want to move? In that case, low mortgage rates don't matter. The answer is no. Finally, the can I sleep test. It sounds simple, but ask yourself, since every investment has a risk, can you stomach it comfortably? If not, keep it in low risk savings. That's always a good rule.

- I'm Jean Chatzky, for Savvy Money.

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