Secrets to Saving: Financial Planning

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Do you have the money to afford your dream home? Dream car? Dream vacation? Financial planning is key to affording the best.

First, set a few short-term and long-term financial goals to work toward, such as a down payment on a car or home. Include the dollar amount, and a time frame for achieving the goal.

You'll be much more motivated to save when you know what you're saving for. And remember, a goal that isn't written down is only a dream.

What are SMART goals? SMART stands for specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely. These five characteristics are vital for setting goals, and the acronym provides an easy way to remember each one of them.

CLICK HERE to read more about the Secret to Saving Money from About.com, and CLICK HERE for a ton of financial advice from personal finance expert Mellody Hobson.