Monthly Archives: January 2018
In every aspect of life, individuals need some sort of help in organization. We need help in organizing our closets, our work schedules, our play schedules – even our children’s hectic programs. That’s especially true when it comes to personal finances. Personal finances are as important as making sure we keep ourselves healthy and strong. It helps to have a history of keeping things in balance, but if not, then the earlier we find out what we do know about our own finances, the better.
Obviously, there are many ways to manage your finances that will not only get you started on the right path, but help you continue its reality. Once there, you can actually see how well it will work for you. Being on the right path implies so much more than just knowing how to balance your check book once a month. It’s being able to secure a good routine that helps grow your finances and keeps you on the straight and narrow; that ‘s important if you plan on having a future without the added burden of money woes.
The way that this can be done include knowing up front what you have to work with; how much money goes for what. Where the money goes and where it needs to go. Once these facts are established, then putting together a good working plan to track your money for the future, will be easier than you thought. Some tips include budgeting and investing wisely. When you budget using a list method, it’s so much more efficient tracking where your funds will go.
When you think about budgeting your money, you think about how that is done with a minimal amount of stress and strain. First, you need to make a list of bills that need to be paid, and how much they require on a monthly basis. Unfortunately, there are unforeseen circumstances that may arise that just can’t be helped; all the more reason for a good budget to be in place, so that some of the downfall will be offset by how well you’ve made the budget work.
Find out if there is any money that can be invested. If so, then check with an investment broker to see if what you have to invest is worth the trip. If it is substantial and it is placed correctly, then perhaps there will be enough to use toward your retirement plan.
Once you get all your ducks in a row, make sure your tax attorney or accountant is aware of your complete financial progress. They can help you better plan for the future by knowing where you are at the present. They can also give you some great advice as to how to proceed in your investments.
The financial demands presented by a new addition to the family can overwhelm new parents. Costs for toys, diapers, clothing and medical expenses mount up quickly. Factor in the cost of college 18 years down the line, and it is no wonder new parents panic. Read on for tips to alleviate the worry and costs all new parents face.
1. Consider whether both parents will work outside the house. If one decides to stay home, use pregnancy time to try living on one income, and put the rest in your savings account.
2. Make up a budget if you do not already have one. Keep track of all your expenditures for one month, and decide where to make changes.
3. Lower your debt. Increase the amount you put toward credit card payments by scaling back on eating out and entertainment expenditures.
4. Create an emergency fund. If you cannot sock away three to six months’ worth of living expenses, set aside what you can.
5. Avoid expensive baby boutiques. A small indulgence now and again is fine, but does a 3-month-old really need rhinestone-encrusted shoes for $100? Before you even set up the nursery, devise a spending plan. Shop at consignment stores and yard sales, and accept hand-me-downs.
6. Make sure you have enough life insurance. Parents should seek at least five times their earnings in addition to the total amount of household debt plus college tuition. Most planners recommend term insurance for new parents. The term should last until dependents are finished college and no longer financially dependent on parents.
7. Contribute at least 10 percent to your retirement savings plan before you save for your child’s college tuition. While your child can borrow money for college, there are no loans or scholarships available for retirement. Focusing only on your child’s college tuition will leave you nothing for retirement, and you may have to rely on your child for support in old age.
8. Set up an automatic contribution for a 529 college savings plan. You can put after-tax money aside in an investment account and allow it to grow tax-deferred. The money is tax-free when you withdraw it for college expenses.
9. Buy a home in an area with a great school district. Not only will your child benefit from attending good schools, your house should appreciate over time.
10. Make a will. You should designate a guardian for your child in the event of the premature death of both parents since you do not want the court to make this decision for you. Even if you intend your child to inherit all your assets, you need to designate someone to handle your finances in the event of your death.
If you are looking to buy a new automobile no doubt you have already started doing your homework. Comparing vehicles and models, accessories and mileage and checking out an abundance of dealerships to see who has the best price for the exact vehicle you want to drive.
You need to do the same thing when it comes to getting financing for your new vehicle. Financing options abound, and everyone has a slightly different rate with slightly different terms. It is up to you, the consumer, to find the deal that is right for you.
The process of finding a financing option which is best for you can seem daunting but there are at least a few things you can do to make the process a lot less painful and lot more effective in the long run.
In many cases the dealership will work to help you find an option that you can handle. Remember, they want to sell you a car, so it is in their best interest to help you buy it, but there is only so much they can do. The rest is usually up to you.
Start by comparing financing options available at institutions other than the one your dealer recommends. Don’t be afraid to search online, visit your bank, the neighborhood credit union or anyone who makes new auto loans. Everyone will have different interest rates, terms and options. The more options you have the better the deal you can secure for yourself.
Leasing might be better for you
You might also want to consider a leasing option rather than a straight purchase. With leasing you can often get a much lower monthly payment and also not have to worry about maintaining the car month after month because dealer provided maintenance is part of the agreement. Of course at the end of the least the car belongs to the dealer, not you, so be sure you understand how that will impact you in the long run if you decide to go with that option.
Your credit report
If you do decide to purchase you vehicle there are a few simple steps you can take to make certain you get the financing options that you need.
First, get a copy of your current credit score and credit report and start checking it for errors. It is not uncommon for credit reporting companies to use outdated or completely wrong information. It is up to you as the consumer to make certain the information in your credit report is accurate.
Every lender is going to use your credit report and credit score to determine whether or not to loan you money and what terms to offer you. Making certain this information is correct will go a long was to getting you the deal you need.
Don’t just settle for the financing option offered by the dealer. Start comparing rates of as many lenders as you can. Visit your bank, local credit unions and even internet lending agencies. Collect a list of the top five deals offered then revisit them and start negotiating. Don’t be afraid to haggle for the best possible deal. Lenders, if they want your business, will be willing to fight for it and will adjust the terms of their loan to better suits your needs in order to get you to deal with them.
Don’t be late with your payments
Once you get the loan you want, make your payments on time and pay off the loan in full so you can further improve your credit and get an even better deal the next time you buy a new car.
Keeping your personal finance in order is not something that is an easy task. Personal finance disasters can sneak up on you. Sometimes an emergency expense can mess up your budget so badly that you have to take months to get things back in order.
To help prevent emergency expenses or other unexpected situations from blowing your personal finance out of order you need to develop something called an emergency fund. An emergency fund is basically a savings that is used only in case of emergencies.
Importance of an Emergency Fund
The idea of an emergency fund is basically to help prepare you for extreme situations such as the loss of a job. An emergency fund should ideally be something you could live off of for at least three months if you were to suddenly lose your income.
However, an emergency fund can also be something you can dip into should you have an unexpected expense. The whole point is that you have this extra money there if you should need it for something important that does not fit into the budget.
An emergency fund is not a savings account you can use to make special purchases. It is important to understand and maintain that the emergency account is only for emergency situations.
Make a Budget
To start setting up your emergency fund you need to establish a budget. This will help you to learn about your expenses and be able to set up the amount of the emergency fund.
A budget will also help you when it comes to deciding how much money to put in the fund every month. Be honest with your budget.
Find Out How Much You Need
You will want to consult your budget for how much you will need in an emergency fund. You want to make sure that the fund’s total amount would allow you to live for at least three months.
Of course you can feel free to save above that amount, but shooting for a goal of three month’s living expenses is a good place to start. Always remember, too, that when you take any money out of the account that you need to put that amount back.
When deciding you may want to consider extra expenses and if you want to include those in your emergency fund. If you fall on tough times you may end up deciding to forego extra expenses like cable television or weekly night out. Or you may still want to keep those things. Just make sure you come to an honest amount that you could really off of if you needed to.
Build Your Fund
Once you have decided how much you need in an emergency fund and how much you will add to it each month the only thing left to do is start saving. Make sure you choose an account that will pay you a good amount of interest and be a secure place to keep this money.
You should be able to build up an emergency account rather quickly which will help to ease your mind about what you would do in an emergency situation. You will know that you have that emergency account to help you keep your personal finance safe and stable.