Category Archives: Finance

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Strange But Creative Personal Finance

I guess most of you are aware about the shrinking global economy unless you have been hiding in Himalayas since last two years or more. Money making, in today’s scenario, is not easy at all. You have to cut down on your groceries, work 15 hours instead of 8, stop partying, and yet you do not save a negligible amount to pay off your credit card bill.

You say “I am trying everything to perk up my financial stability.” I am sure you aren’t. Below are some strange but smart personal finance tips to earn quickly.

1. Medical Research

No, I am not asking you to do a medical research. That will be done by doctors and physicians. You just need to lend your body for research. It isn’t as bloodcurdling as it sounds because all trials and test are conducted under expert supervision and they have to adhere to austere laws. I do not know about rest of the countries, but in US they make sure your body is safe while conducting the tests. Normal trials include drugs dosage testing which has already been scrupulously tested, but not on humans.

It is not necessary to be in good shape to get involved because drugs are not for healthy people. Although some research seek a healthy body, most of them are looking for smokers, or obese, or asthma patients. Those interested, be prepared for diminutive side effects.

2. Trade in blood

Donating your blood is a virtue. But it is an opportunity in recession times. In US, you can earn up to $40 per donation. It is completely safe to give a bottle of blood from your body at any given time. Humans recover the lost blood within a day. That means you can earn $40 per day. However, it’s not advisable to donate on a daily basis.

These strange personal finance tips are quite useful and inexpensive, are not they? Read on.

3. Trade in Hair

People try to earn money by using what’s under their scalp ignoring an indispensable source of income thriving on it. For those still wondering, I am talking about your hair. Instead of dumping it after cutting, sell it and earn up to $ 1,000. However, you can just collect crumbs and sell it off. You hair needs to be at least 25 cm long; say it’s one of the eligibility criteria. It also needs to be uncolored, clean, and healthy. These bunches of hair are used to make wigs which will be used by celebrities. Lucky hair! You can find purchasers online.

4. Trade in sperms

Make money from your manhood is one of the few well paying personal finance tips that your financial consultant wouldn’t inform you. Probably because he might not know it. Selling your sperms once in a week or two is a great opportunity to earn money that women can never enjoy. However, it might be quite bothersome for those men who might think that their numerous off-springs will find them out in 16 years time.

5. Disease in fad:

Any disease can be an earning opportunity for those who think creatively. For instance, many people earned money from the period affected by swine flu. They designed comical swine flu awareness t-shirts which were informative yet stylish. Others introduced branded flu masks for rich and modish people.

Finance Tips

Here are some useful finance tips to get you started on the right path to your financial success.

Knowing how to secure your financial well-being is one of the most important things you’ll ever need in life. You don’t have to be a genius to do it.

You just need to know a few basics, form a plan, and be ready to stick to it. No matter how much or little money you have, the important thing is to educate yourself about your opportunities.

Investments

There is no guarantee that you’ll make money from investments you make. But if you get the facts about saving and investing and follow through with an intelligent plan, you should be able to gain financial security over the years and enjoy the benefits of managing your money.

No one is born knowing how to save or to invest. Every successful investor starts with the basics. A few people may stumble into financial security – a wealthy relative may die, or a business may take off. For most people however, the only way to attain financial security is to save and invest over a long period of time.

Time after time, people of even modest means who begin the journey reach financial security and all that it promises: buying a home, educational opportunities for their children, and a comfortable retirement. If they can do it, so can you.

Your “savings” are usually put into the safest places or products that allow you access to your money at any time such as a savings accounts. But there’s a price to pay for security and ready availability. Your money earns less interest as it works for you.

Most smart investors put enough money in a savings product to cover an emergency, like sudden unemployment. Some make sure they have up to six months of their income in savings so that they know it will absolutely be there for them when they need it.

But how “safe” is a savings account if you leave all your money there for a long time, and the interest it earns doesn’t keep up with inflation? Let’s say you save a pound when it can buy a loaf of bread. But years later when you withdraw that pound plus the interest you earned, it might only be able to buy half a loaf. That is why many people put some of their money in savings, but look to investing so they can earn more over long periods of time, say three years or longer.

You may prefer to invest your money in order to achieve a higher return compared to savings but you should be aware that when you “invest,” you have a greater chance of losing your money than when you “save.” You could lose your “principal,” which is the amount you’ve invested. That’s true even if you purchase your investments through a bank. But when you invest, you also have the opportunity to earn more money than when you save.

Personal Finance Tip

Most personal finance gurus continually stress the importance of budgeting for monitoring and modifying poor spending habits. However, I have noticed that most people who attempt to implement a family budget eventually give up on the activity, mainly because it takes the fun out of spending money. You know what, I agree! An impulse purchase here and there feels good! And as it turns out, an impulse purchase made on occasion won’t necessarily create a big problem for most us. The problems arise when we decide to make them on credit. Here’s an excellent personal finance tip for all you budget-haters out there – pay cash for all non-investment expenditures and eliminate your need to budget.

What is a Non-Investment Expenditure Anyway?

First off, let’s define investment expenditure. By my own definition, an investment expenditure is a transaction that involves the purchase of an asset that appreciates in value. On the flip side, a non-investment expenditure represents all other transactions. One quick check you can make before whipping out your credit card to buy something is to ask yourself, “Is there a high likelihood that I will be able to sell this item in the future for more than I am paying now?” If the answer is “no,” pay cash. If you don’t have the money, you can’t make the purchase. It’s that simple.

Examples of Non-Investment Expenditures

Unfortunately, the vast majority of our everyday spending is classified as non-investment expenditures. Groceries, fuel for the vehicles, dining out, your cell phone bill, a new pair of designer jeans – these are all non-investment expenditures. Some of these items may be extremely important, even life sustaining. But purchasing on credit, even for life sustaining expenditures, encourages excess. Let’s take food, for instance. To purchase enough food for the family to survive really does not cost much money. What costs us a pile of money are the rib-eye steaks, junk food, alcoholic beverages, and sodas we routinely buy. Moreover, these foods are bad for our health! Grocery shopping with cash forces us to reconsider the food choices we make, in terms of both health and money. And that’s a good thing.

What Else is There?

You may be asking yourself, “Would any of my spending be classified as investment expenditures?” For me, two things come to mind – your home and your education. A home is rather obvious because, over time, houses have always increased in value. A college education would also be considered an investment because it provides one the opportunity to earn more money than he would otherwise make. Because these two items are considered investments, taking out a loan to pay for them can be justified. In addition, home mortgages and college loans offer some of the lowest interest rates of any form of credit, making them even more attractive expenditures.

One Caveat to Consider

Although following the above advice can eliminate the need for a budget, one other choice must be made to assure financial success in the future. An automatic investment plan must be initiated to make certain your investment accounts are funded before all the money is spent. If you work for a company that offers a 401k plan, this is done automatically. If you have outside accounts, you will have to notify the firm to initiate automatic transfers from your checking account. With most firms, you can set up the automatic transfers yourself from your online account interface.

Summary

Although a budget is a fantastic tool for monitoring and modifying our spending habits, the cold hard truth is that many of us will never stick to one. Should these folks be doomed to financial hell for the rest of their lives for this so-called lack of discipline? Of course, not! Just follow our simple personal finance tip to pay cash for all non-investment expenditures and you, too, will reach financial success in the future.

Personal Finance Tips

Personal management of finances is not always easy. In fact, many people are having a hard time taking charge over money-matters and some even end up spending more than what they earn despite having a budget plan. What can you do to manage your finances more effectively? The right strategies are essential in order to make things work. Consider the following finance tips from the experts:

Set a definite goal. What would you like to achieve within the next 3 or 6 months or year? Setting a definite goal is important in order to create a suitable plan. For example, if you currently have unpaid debts with multiple creditors, then debt repayment should be your top priority. On the other hand, if you don’t have outstanding debts to pay, perhaps you want to work on building up your savings account. Other goals to consider is saving up money to improve the house, buy a home or car, start a small business, etc. The type of financial plan you need will depend on what you want to achieve.

Be ready to give up some things. In an effort to cut down your expenses, you should be prepared to give up some things that you may want, but not really need. Self-discipline is always necessary to make a budget plan work. For instance, if you have been used to going out to the movies or partying with your friends every weekends, perhaps you may consider doing it only once or twice a month to save money. Little sacrifices will go a long way and you just have to recognize the more important things from the not so important ones.

Monitor your spending for the next 2 months. Creating a suitable budget plan is a challenge in itself because financial situations and capabilities vary from one person to another. You might need to observe your own spending habits for the next month or two. Be sure to write down all your expenses, from big purchases down to the smallest cents. Making a list of your expenditures is the best way to see where your money goes. You might be surprised to discover later on that many items on your list are not really that important in your life, but eating up a large portion of your earnings. Based on your list, you will be able to make some adjustments and changes where needed.

Collaborate with your family members. If you are living with your family, it’s important to discuss your budgeting plan with everyone, especially with your children, so that everyone can do his/her own share to make the plan a success. Talking money-matters with the family is healthy because the children will be able to see the importance of following a budget plan and the why it’s important to save money.

Eliminate extra fees from your bills. If you can avoid the interest rate charges from your credit cards as well as late penalty fees on all your bills, you will be able to save a significant amount of money in a year. You can eliminate unnecessary fees by paying your monthly credit card balance in full and paying all your creditors on or before your due date. This might sound like an obvious strategy but many consumers are prone to paying late fees and interest rates which is a complete waste of money.

Home Finance Tip

This weeks home finance tip deals with saving. For more than 25% of Americans, a savings account is non-existent in their lives. Although saving for a rainy day isn’t something we like to do, it is one of the most essential financial activities to safeguard our future.

Financial advisors differ on how much money we need in our emergency funds but they seem to agree on a 6 to 10 month range. How do you calculate that? First you have to know how much you spend each month. You will always estimate low so get your bank and credit card statements out and add it all up. Take that number and multiply it by 8 months (or somewhere in that 6 to 10 range) and that’s your goal. Once you’re there, keep it in a savings account. It can’t be tied up in a CD and you can’t risk losing it in the stock market. (By the way, I strongly suggest that you add disability insurance to your monthly expenses. It’s cheap and if you became sick or hurt, the monthly bills will be out of your mind)

Now that we know how much you should save, you brain might be in overdrive thinking about how you will fund your savings account. It’s going to take discipline but here’s a fun way that will put some big money in your savings account over time. You can think of it as my Chick-fil-a method. I love Chick fil a in part because the food is good (hey chick fil a, are you reading?) but also because they give out coupons all the time. I would have gone to Chick Fil a and paid full price without the coupon but with it, I saved $4. That $4 goes in to my savings account. Because I put everything on my credit card and pay it off at the end of the month, I get rewards points. I always buy $50 gift certificates with those points. Guess where that $50 goes? Let’s take it a little further. Rather than going to Chick Fil a and getting a chicken sandwich and waffle fries and a diet coke for $9, I go to the grocery store and pick up a pack of chicken breasts and a couple of potatoes and drink water. First, I’m saving calories but I also saved $5 by not eating out. I ironed my own shirt rather than taking it to the dry cleaner, $2. So let’s see; in this article alone I saved $70 and have a sizeable amount for my savings account.

Keep a 1 week journal and see what you can do to pay yourself. It’s fun, it’s a challenge, and you will feel better about getting closer to your financial goal. We are not in an economy where we can count on having a job tomorrow. Economists predict that 1 out of every 10 working Americans will not be working before this recession is over. Don’t forget about this week’s home finance tip. If you need it, you will be grateful that you have it.

Personal Finance Tips

Credit card debt help and relief programs are the best way to get out of unsecured debt. Thanks to the stimulus money acting as catalyst; for providing you a platform to negotiate with your credit card company. You can now follow any debt relief program and eliminate most part of your debt by smart negotiation with the help of Settlement Company. If the debt management company have a good reputation and track record, they can even fetch you a deal to wipe out to the tune of more than 60 % of the total outstanding amount.

To make the best of this process, here are some tips that can help you:

  1. Find the top performing debt settlement company to help you with it. Make sure that the settlement company is legitimate and has earned good reviews from its old customers on this ground.
  2. Remember that the credit card providers consider your payment record and it might turn in your favour. If you have failed to repay the bills on time for lost few months, it might help strengthen your case.
  3. You should now plan out your expenses and reduce your expenditures so that you stay accountable for each penny spent.
  4. Once you end up with a handsome bargain, try your best to eliminate the remaining amount in one big shot. This is possible if you take the help of personal finance tips. It is often associated with the settlement companies and you can stop the bankers calling you every day.
  5. To legally eliminate your debt, it is fairly important that you take each and every step after consulting with the advisors for personal finance tips. Make sure that your steps are being guided regularly so that you don’t end up with big loss.
  6. Apart from all these, the personal finance concept allows you to end your loans era and start fresh with a new agreement so that you keep paying the amount with very low rate of interest. Always make sure that you calculate the profit and loss with each negotiation so that you don’t end up in losing side.

Ways to Become Financially Free Even

Being financially free can sound like a far-fetched idea for most single women. The average American today spends more than they earn and can barely keep up financially. Becoming financially free is not impossible, no matter what you might think today! Keep reading to find some personal finance tips that every single woman should know.

Start with a budget. Whether you make a lot of money or a little money, you need a budget to know where you are going. Think of your budget as your financial road map for your future. If you were going some where you have never been, you wouldn’t start out just driving, would you? It’s unlikely. It would be a waste of time and gas to do that. The same goes for your finances. Why would you continue to work week after week without taking some time to plan how you are going to use your money you worked so hard for? Budgeting can help you do just that. Make a budget a priority so you are not wasting time working and the money you earn. Even if you are single and don’t think you make enough money, you need a budget to know where your money is being spent.

Save early and often, even if it seems impossible. Saving money each month is important on so many levels. Not only does it give us something to fall back on when times are tough, it helps us remain disciplined with our money. Think of saving your money sort of like the gas you would put in the car for the trip in example one. Without saving money, how will you have anything for the future? If you have nothing in savings, your first goal should be to have $1,000 in an emergency fund you can fall back on. The emergency fund allows you to rely on your own cash rather than credit cards when something unexpected comes up. Once you get your emergency fund built up, start contributing to your retirement but investing in your company’s 401k plan or start your own fund. It’s never too early or too late to start saving for the future! This is especially important for single women. If you wait until you have a better job, more money or more of something else, you might just never get started.

Debt can be crippling to personal finances. In order to be financially free, debt needs to be eliminated so the income coming in can go towards savings, rather than paying off debt. Begin small by paying off the cards with the smallest balance first. After that card is paid off, start applying that money towards the card with the next smallest balance and so on. If you receive a raise or a tax return, apply this money towards debt instead of spending it. This “snowball” effect is an excellent way to pay off debt quickly. This can be done on just one income! When you see debt being eliminated, it is rewarding and motivating!

The little things can have the biggest impact. While it may not seem like it, the little things can add up the most when it comes to your money. Spending just $5 extra a day can add up to $150 in unplanned expenses for the month. But this can also work in the opposite way. Adding $5 a day to pay off debt can equate to an extra $150 paid off in debt each month!

It can seem next to impossible for a single woman to start to get her personal finances under control. The most important thing to remember is personal finance is nearly always about behavior. If you can change some of the habits you are accustomed too, you can start to see huge a huge impact on your financial situation.

Personal Finance Tips

Traveling around the world is my passion, hobby, pastime, or whatever you want to name it. I just love traveling and I take my family where ever I go. So even they love it, al least that’s what they say. Over a period of time, I have developed a habit of saving enormous amount while we are on a trip. This helps us to save some amount for the next trip. Let me get to the point and help you with few personal finance tips while traveling that can really save some money.

Food

If you are on a short vacation, say for a couple of days, remember to pack your snacks. When I am driving out for few days I carry string cheese, apples, and carrots.

A note on apples: To avoid sleep while driving, not is as effective as apples.

If you can manage to pack a lunch that can last a couple of days and lots of snacks, much of your money spent on eating in expensive restaurants can be reduced.

A day before you commence your trip, visit an eatery or a grocery store near your house and buy lots of snacks. Same foodstuffs at a tourist location or a crowded place or even a convenience store near gas pump will cost much more.

If you don’t like eating packed food, or carrying them, get some coupons. These discount coupons are quite inexpensive way to eat while traveling.

Carry lots of water with you. Something that’s freely available at home costs much outside. Lastly, be proactive and not reactive.

Gasoline

If your trip involves lots of driving, carry a cash-back credit card with you. I have also found that better quality of petrol provides better mileage. Probably, this is the only way to save money in this category. You cannot replace gas by anything else like water or beer.

Sometimes, my employer reimburses the amount spent on gas. So I get the whole amount back plus 3% cash back.

Hotels

Living in hotels is very expensive while on a vacation. For me, hotel was a major factor affecting our travel budget. Not any more. I reserve my rooms online well in advance. Several portals like MyPoints or Ebates offer a cash back scheme.

If you are a regular traveler, it’s wise to become a member of holiday clubs, or loyalty clubs that offer discounted stay.

Most of the time when we are traveling, we halt at any hotel on the way. However, since last year I have developed a new strategy that has helped me save a lot. Before going for a tour, I jot down the names and numbers of all the hotels in and around the place we had decided to halt at. I also jot down the details of hotels that are about one hour’s distance from our expected halt. This way, we have started to get the best deal.

Also, while selecting hotel, check weather it includes a free breakfast. When I travel with my family (5 members), it saves a great deal of money.

Additional suggestions

This is not a very frugal suggestion, but I am ready to pay $20 to $30 extra for cleanliness. I wouldn’t opt for a hotel that has creepy cockroaches and long hairs on the bed, just because it’s cheap.

If your family includes a kid or two, do make a note of malls on the way before starting your journey. The play area in a mall is the best refreshment you can offer your kids while traveling.

It’s good to save money while traveling but not at the cost of your life. If you are very sleepy while driving, get yourself a room to sleep, if not for whole night, at least for a couple of hours. Okay, if you want frugality here, get an energy drink and get going.

Personal Finance Tips

To be in loan trouble can be a big cause for anxiety. Your health could deteriorate and in a matter of time you could find yourself snapping at anyone who tries to make simple conversation with you. All his could happen out of sheer frustration in being over your head in debt.

The problem however could be solved easily. In fact it is easier than you think. It is natural to feel the walls are closing in when you are in debt but with if you had been given proper personal finance tips you would have found yourself almost debt-free.

The good news is provided you owe in excess of $10,000 to say a credit card company; you have the option of having to never pay back 70 percent of your unsecured debt.

A good example

In fact a credit card company would be a good example as they do not require collateral when they hand you over that coveted piece of plastic which can go on to make your life miserable. Although personal finance tips can prove to be beneficial, the thing to be remembered is that they are best taken if you happen to have pots of money.

Most credit card companies have made $10,000 the benchmark from which they would be willing to negotiate down interest rates. It is not exactly a hard and fast rule but the figure is generally followed by most card companies. It may sound strange, but the higher the amount you owe, the more willing they would be to bring down your interest rate to a less obscene level.

This is because with the recession, they cannot afford to lose even a cent from their customers so they are more than happy to retrieve anything they can. In fact, they would be quite happy to get back the principal but perhaps for the sake of it, they also insist on some interest as well.

The credit card companies have themselves to blame. They should have realized their abnormally high interest rates would mean many people would default on repayments. With the economy being what it is, the number of defaulters has turned into millions and that adds up to a considerable amount of money. Undoubtedly, this has a serious effect on the company bottom line.

It is doubtful even personal finance tips could have warned you of what lay ahead. Not even the best analysts could really predict this recession for sure.