Money

Driverless Cars Will Save You Money

You might think that the idea of driverless cars saving you money is a little nonsensical. After all, there’s currently a rather hefty premium on the technology. Going autonomous is estimated to add around $10,000 to the price of a vehicle. But it’s worth considering for a moment what has happened in practically every other area of the economy that has been touched by digital technology. Take the first mobile phones, for instance. To buy a cell phone in the 1980s, you had to be incredibly wealthy (and strong enough to lift them), but today you can pick up a phone for 100 times less money. The same trend will occur in driverless cars. They’ll start off expensive, and then they will get cheaper and cheaper as companies begin mass-producing all the autonomous components.

Driverless Cars

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But there’s an argument to suggest that people will save on more than just the price of a new vehicle by going driverless. In fact, it could help bring the cost of motoring way down and make driving safer, preventing injury and death. Take a look at some of the ways driverless cars could boost your finances.

Your Family Will Only Need One Car

Because humans have to be behind the wheel of today’s cars, families often find themselves forced to pay for multiple vehicles. When one person leaves the home with one car, it denies everybody else access to transport.

However, with autonomous vehicles, it doesn’t have to be like this. The family car could quite easily take one person to work, then taxi the next person to school and then return itself to the family driveway until it is needed again.

This isn’t just a moot point. The effect that driverless cars will have on the number of cars the average family owns has been studied by the University of Michigan transportation division. They estimate that average family car ownership will plummet from 2.1 today to just 1.2 after self-driving cars are fully adopted. That’s bad news for the car industry, but incredibly good news for consumers who want to slash the cost of transport. The University of Michigan also predicts that smart apps will allow the real number of cars owned per family to fall even further. Rather than just having to rely on their own car, it’s more likely that people will rent out cars from a fleet of driverless vehicles on the road designed to serve everybody. Ride hailing may replace ownership altogether for people who aren’t particularly concerned about owning their own car.

You Won’t Get Injured

Today, the chances that you’ll get injured on the road is unacceptably high. At the moment, the best recourse is to find a personal injury lawyer, but what about in the future? Because driverless cars will result in a 90 percent drop in accidents, there will be less chance of injury, especially for people traveling inside autonomous vehicles. Improve safety functionality will mean that society and individuals will no longer have to bear the incredibly high costs of accidents and won’t suffer debilitating illnesses at the same rate.

MetroMile, an insurance company, has estimated that driverless cars could save the average motoring over $1,000 on their car insurance every year. That might sound like bad news for the insurance industry, but what insurers care about isn’t the total amount of money they can charge for car insurance, but the difference between what they get in and what they get out. For driverless cars, insurance premiums will be much lower, but so too will the number of accidents. In other words, if driverless cars really can avoid collisions (which seems entirely feasible given the evidence we have so far) then the cost of insurance will come down too, and motoring expenses will plummet.

You Won’t Have To Pay Out For Tickets

Every year, the authorities grab hundreds of millions of dollars in fines from transgressing motorists. The cover story is that it is about safety, but for the majority of drivers, speeding or sitting in a box junction for too long is a complete accident. We’re all human, after all. However, robots are not human, and unlike their fleshy counterparts, they never get tired or lose their concentration. This means that people who buy driverless vehicles could potentially protect themselves from road violation fines of all varieties because the car is programmed to avoid these hazards. It is likely that the maker of the software will be fined if a car does something it shouldn’t, meaning that companies, not customers, will pay for highway violations.


Saving Money the Tried and Tested Way

Do you think your financial position is hopeless? If you have a large balance of credit card debt and you struggle to pay your bills each month, you may begin to despair. Your daily life will become one of stress and that is even before you start to think beyond the short term and how you can possibly live comfortably in retirement. Doing nothing really isn’t an option but where do you start? There are a number of ways that people have saved money in the past, most of which are not too painful, and you need to ask yourself whether you have the determination and self-discipline to try them. Even a small daily saving adds up over time and the longer you persevere, the better you will feel, and the healthier your savings will look and will help people to reduce their debt problems they are facing because of over borrowing from high-interest lenders.

Setting Targets

You need to set yourself some targets but not set them too high so you get discouraged and give up. You need to analyse your existing habits. Likewise, creating a surplus each month by using your credit card more is simply transferring the problem on to your card. There may be short term relief but it is no solution. The secret is to change your habits as painlessly as possible.

‘’Luxuries’’

Why not charge yourself a fee for each ‘’luxury’’ you afford yourself? ‘’Luxury’’ is a broad term. You may not regard a beer as a luxury but if you resolve to set aside a dollar against each beer you drink, then you may build up a small fund, and possibly even have one less than you would have ordinarily. Not a bad thing! If you put those dollars aside every few days, you won’t notice they are gone.

Perhaps you can think of our small and regular purchases instead? The choice is yours and many things can be equally effective.

Out of Sight, Out of Mind

If you set up a system whereby money is always transferred out of your checking account into a savings account that is less accessible, you may even gradually forget that you have any more to spend in the month than the amount after that transfer. Ideally your savings account will not be in your bank so that any spending you make on your debit card cannot be taken from your balance.

At the end of the Day

Take a look in your wallet and pockets at the end of each day. You could put your coins, dollar bills and even $5 bills aside. If you put them in a jar the money will soon accumulate. As it builds, it will be tempting to dip into it so decide on regularly depositing that money into your savings account to remove that temptation.

If you enjoy seeing your money rise like this, you may even start to leave your credit card in your wallet and start to use cash more often so that you have some to set aside. That in itself is a good habit because you are not going to increase your credit card balance as quickly as you otherwise might do.

The Coffee Shop

Do you really need to go to one of these famous coffee shop chains each morning for a fancy drink? You will obviously have coffee in the house so you could take your drink to work. Some of these fancy coffees are not cheap but are you paying for the brand name?

Some Savings a Little Harder to Make?

• If you are taking a coffee from home, you might just as easily take your lunch. You can easily work out how much coffee and lunch is currently costing you. You will find it so much cheaper to take a healthy sandwich with you and by the end of the month, the dollars will add up.

• While this is not practical for everyone, walking to work is both healthier and cheaper. If you currently drive only a short distance, then you save on fuel while if you drive to the station and park up to then commute, get up earlier and walk. You’ll also save on parking charges.

• Apps will help you keep track of your spending, and budget in general. You can start to price check and even get refunds if you have paid too much for an item.

Conclusion

Some things are easier to do than others. However, if your finances are currently in a mess, you have to try at least some of them. No one has an excuse that they can’t make a coffee and their lunch, even if it is only every other day; it is a start. The more success you have, the more encouraged you are likely to be, and as a result, determined to continue. Think of the stress draining out of your body!

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What Can Rich People Teach Us About Managing Money?

It’s no secret that a lot of us are jealous of rich people. We’d kill to have their bank balances, and we find it unfair when others have a lot of money purely because we want it too! But, you shouldn’t be jealous because a lot of rich people got rich because they knew how to manage their money.

Bearing that in mind, here are three things rich people can teach us about looking after our cash:

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Money Makes Money

You’ve probably heard the saying ‘the rich get richer’, and it’s usually used by people moaning that wealthy people are always the ones that get more money. Well, this isn’t a coincidence, it’s because rich people know what to do with their money. More importantly, they know that money makes more money. What this means is that they invest their money into different things that help generate more money. If we’re to learn anything from rich people, it’s that you have to be prepared to spend money to make money. If you have money in your account, that’s just lingering there collecting a poor interest rate, take it out and invest in something that can increase that amount of money over time.

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Plan Ahead

One thing that everyone should do with their money is think about the future. Not just your future, but the future of your children and their children too. Don’t just think about what you want to do with your money now, think about what you want to do with it in the future, and where you want some of it to go. There are many financial advisors like Derrick Kinney who make a good point in saying that everyone’s vision of the future is unique. You may have plans for the future that others don’t. Either way, you need to spend some time creating a financial plan with the future in mind. Consider what you want to do with your money now that will benefit you in the future, as well as thinking about any money you want to put away for family members in the future. A big part of this plan will be writing a will to ensure your future finances go where you want them to when you die. Rich people do this all the time, they’re always on the ball and thinking ahead as well as thinking about the present.

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Don’t Depend On Credit

Finally, rich people are really good at using credit wisely. They only use credit cards when it benefits them, and never carry around a credit card balance. If they ever use their credit card, they pay off the balance in full and don’t allow it to carry over into the next month. This is how people end up in debt and start fighting for financial survival. Rich people don’t depend on credit to get by, and they didn’t depend on it when they were working their way up the wealth ladder. The secret is finding out the right way to use credit, so it benefits you rather than causes debt.

Bear these three things in mind, and you will start managing your money just like a rich person!


Essential Money-Management Tips For Any Small Business Owner

Money Management Tips

If you’ve been running a small business for long enough, you’ll know that your success isn’t just down to the number of paying customers you get, but also how you manage your money after it comes into your organization. This is why it’s so important to pay close attention to have a firm handle on all the capital that’s entering and leaving your operation. Here are some essential money management tips for any small business owner…

Save, Save and Save Some More!

Having established a budget that you’ll be able to stick to, one critical habit you need to stick to is saving money. You never know when sales can suddenly slump or other financial problems can arise from factors outside of your control, so cutting down unnecessary expenses is absolutely non-negotiable. This isn’t just about stashing away all the capital that you earn through your business. It’s also about being smart with what you spend. Sure, it would feel pretty great to have a private office with your logo above the entrance, but if you can continue to operate managing remote workers from your home computer, then this is the way to go. Smart decisions like this can save you a huge amount of money, which you can invest in the future of your business, or store away as a financial safety net for the future.

Hire or Promote a CFO

Having a chief financial officer at your business can make managing the financial comings and goings so much easier. While you should still have a direct role in this, you’ll be able to pass a lot of routine money-management tasks onto this professional, and focus more of your attention on pushing on towards the overarching, long-term goals of your business. If you can’t afford to hire an experienced CFO, then an accountant or bookkeeper can also take a lot of the strain off your shoulders. You may also be able to promote a CFO or similar professional from within your organization if there’s anyone who’s particularly good with numbers. You can make sure that they’re up to the task by setting them up on distance-learning courses like this:

http://online.maryville.edu/accounting/bachelors/. Your resources might be pretty stretched right now, but hiring someone to help with your money management is one investment you certainly won’t regret.

Form Strategies to Boost Cash Flow

Good money management obviously goes way past maintaining the current state of the business. You also need to formulate strategies that will boost your cash flow, and protect you against times where business is bad. Just like with saving, there are many different ways you can boost your cash flow, for example offering discounts and incentives to customers who pay their invoices early. You should also be thinking about developing additional products and services that will broaden your market appeal, and allow you to offer things that your competitors can’t. You can read a few more suggestions here: https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/277045. You might be pretty stable for now, but if you don’t try to increase your cash flow, growth is going to slow to a crawl.

 


Picking Yourself Up From A Fall In Income

If you have been in full time employment for a long time you get used to a standard of living. That standard of living can suddenly be cut short if you suffer from a drop in income due to ill health, unemployment or pregnancy.

If you find yourself in a situation of reduced income you need to start making some hard decisions. It is time to pull in your belt. But being frugal isn’t the only way of dealing with a loss of income, there are some practical ways of reducing your outgoings as well which will have a huge impact on your books at the end of each month. Here are some tips on helping you to balance tough times.

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Unnecessary spending; now is the time to review your spending habits and work out what fat could be cut from the monthly household outgoings. Consider home treatments instead of a trip to the salon, running one car instead of two and profiting on the sale of the other, run in the park instead of those expensive gym memberships. There are lots of ways to cut costs so be ruthless and snip away

Don’t be tempted to borrow money; if you are in a financial hole it is all too easy to borrow money to plug it but this will just add to the problem in the long term as you add debt repayment to your monthly outgoings

Consolidating debt; if you have credit cards, loans and other unsecured debts this might be the time to consider consolidation as a way of cutting down the monthly outgoings. This can also help keep your credit score buoyant. Check the options available to you because there are lots of different ways to bring debt into line and not all of them will have favorable rates. The last thing you need is to add more interest to your financial challenges

Ask for help; seeking the help of a professional finance advisor can lighten the load and share the burden. Its nice having someone working on your side and they may see something in your finances that you didn’t that could help you stay afloat until your income gets back on an even keel

Consider your options; as well as looking for ways to reduce your outgoings you should be considering the options for bringing money in. If you are unemployed look for employment, if you’re unwell turn a hobby into something you can be paid for – be creative with your ideas for making money and as long as it is legal it will give you a sense of achievement as you take action to move your financial problems forward

Don’t be too hard on yourself; it is all too easy to blame ourselves when we land in financial difficulty. Take a more positive attitude and look for the opportunities this might present in terms of a potential career change or a chance to reduce spending and adopt better financial habit. If you stay positive then you will see a positive step towards financial freedom


Sources of passive income for retirees – Keep building your financial safe

Passive income is the stream of income which almost everyone dreams of because it lets you generate income either after working at your day job or without working at any job. It often needs enough effort and time to create streams of passive income but once you get to know such sources, they serve you well for many years to come. Passive income is generated by a rental property or by a business which you own but in which you don’t participate actively. If you’re an investor, you may already be investing money and whenever you make good investment choices, you get back the money that you invest. Here are few ways in which retirees can generate passive income.

  • Rent your property if you have more than what you need

Irrespective of whether you purchase a second property or you rent out unused space in your home, transforming into a landlord can definitely be a good way of generating passive income. However, you should also keep in mind that becoming a landlord can definitely be an active endeavor. You may have to put in considerable amount of work when you find out renters and when you got to maintain your rental property.

  • Opt for a side business

When you’re retired and yet you create a side business, this can be a good investment for the years to come, especially when you can successfully start your business with a plan to turn it into a passive income stream. Whichever business you start off with, make sure you have the goal of hiring other people who can later on run your business. Start hiring writers if you have an online website for your business so that they can write professional business content for your website to be seen on the web.

  • Invest in dividend stocks

How about continuing with investment through several decades of retirement? You can keep a close watch on your portfolio in order to ensure that it’s performing well. Dividend stocks offer current income and they also have the potential to make capital gains. Dividends pay you right away and they can definitely be a good and effective way of generating extra income during retirement. When the company doesn’t perform well, the dividend payments can even be reduced and eliminated.

  • Social Security benefits

In case you work in America, then you’re paying into the social security program through your payroll taxes. The SS benefits many include disability income, retirement income, Medicaid and Medicare. Retirement benefit can start off at an early age of 62 and the total amount is dependent on the amount you’ve earned over all the working years.

So, that’s just some of the most common ways of generating passive income even after being a retiree. However the only problem with this is that it takes lot of time and effort to keep the money flowing. Nevertheless, you shouldn’t let boredom come in as that is the biggest obstacles which can keep you from making money.

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How To Use But Not Lose Money

Financial freedom is both a blessing and a curse. Whilst it’s great to be in control of your own life and the things you can buy, we’ve all found ourselves a little too complacent with our finances at some point in our lives and perhaps gone on a spending splurge or simply forgotten to keep track of how much money was going out of our accounts each month. It can be all too easy to lose a massive amount of your hard-earned money if you don’t remain vigilant and put secure and smart procedures in place to look after your earnings.

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Learning how to use rather than lose money is all to do with viewing every purchase you make seriously. It’s okay to buy luxuries after you’ve paid for all your necessities, but everything in moderation is the key to a stable financial future. Perhaps you think you’re already doing everything you can to reduce your living costs but you’re still finding yourself in a tricky financial situation, so here are some helpful tricks and tips to better use your money rather than always losing it.

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Saving for a rainy day

It’s tempting to look at the hefty amount of disposable income you have left over after you’ve paid for rent and food as an opportunity to buy all the luxuries you’ve been eyeing up this month, but sometimes it’s smarter to take a deep breath and return to those items a few weeks down the line. You’ll likely always find that the urge to buy them has passed, and they would have only ever been a novelty purchase.

That’s why it’s often a better use of your money to put some of your disposable income aside into a savings account. You could look into some personal finance tips for smarter savings if you’re not sure how else you can safeguard your money for the future. Essentially, you need to weigh up essential and nonessential purchases. We all deserve treats now and again, but certainly not excessive treats of which we’ll be bored shortly after the purchase.

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Budgeting

Most people find the overall figure in their bank accounts slowly reducing because they live beyond their means. If you have slightly more expenditures than income every month, you might not think much of it on a short-term basis, but the downhill spiral will slowly catch up with you. Poor budgeting is the reason that so many people borrow money in a blind panic and find themselves in debt further down the line when they fail to curb their habit of spending money they just don’t have.

This is why you need to put together a financial plan which puts your money to good use each month and ensures you’ll always be spending within your available salary; necessities such as rent, food and utility bills always come first. If you have taken out any loans, however, your disposable income needs to go towards paying off those before you indulge in any more luxury purchases.

 


Understanding The Potential Repercussions Of Letting Friends Borrow Money

In all likelihood, you have a friend or family member that has currently hit rock bottom. This individual is likely desperate for money and they’ve decided to turn to you for assistance. If you’ve got the extra money, you’ll probably feel urge to hand it over. They would do the same for you after all. However, you should seriously consider the consequences before handing your money over to a friend or family member. Anything could go wrong and it could lead to major repercussions. They’ll be explored in greater depth below.

No Security Blanket

When it comes down to it, the mass majority of people will let friends borrow money with no security blanket. In most cases, you will not require your friend to sign a contract before you hand over the cash. Attempting to get your friend to sign such a document could put a major strain on your relationship. So, what is going to happen if your buddy misses on a repayment or refuses to pay at all? You could potentially take them to civil court, but the chance of getting your money back is truly slim to none.

While it might not seem friendly, you should seriously consider forcing the individual to sign a written agreement first.

A Blind Friendship

The mass majority of people feel an obligation to trust their friends. This may never result in any consequences, but putting blind trust into a friend can have severe repercussions. This is definitely true, if you’re lending the individual cash. If you fail to carefully vet the individual in question, you’re seriously putting yourself in a risky situation. There is a possibility that the individual in question could have a horrible credit history. They may have defaulted on loans in the past.

If you’re seriously considering lending a friend money, it is pertinent to make sure you really know that individual. Learn about their credit history and make sure you’re not going to get burned.

A Friendship No Longer

Unfortunately, lending money to a friend can have far wider consequences than you might imagine. Even if you’re only giving the individual a few hundred dollars, your relationship could still easily go sour. There is a possibility that you’ll be forced to deny the request or your friend may request to pay it back. This will immediately deteriorate the relationship you share with the individual in question. As soon as you say no or you friend defaults on loan repayments, a negative opinion will be forced and great strain will be put on the relationship.

In order to avoid this from happening, it is best to never lend money to friends and family members. At the same time, you should never ask these individuals for money, unless it is absolutely necessary to do so.

Overall

Allowing your friends to borrow money can be risky. If you’re going to do this, it is pertinent to make sure you use a written agreement. Also, keep records of each repayment up to the point that the entire loan is repaid. This will protect both parties and help to keep your friendship intact.

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Addressing The (Bank) Balance When You’re Made Unemployed

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Losing your job is a massive strain. Once you were making a comfortable living, and now the rug is taken out from underneath you. It can cause a massive strain on your well-being, your relationships, and, of course, your finances. We can be ill-equipped to deal with the problems it can throw up for us financially, but there are ways around the matter to save yourself some sanity, and all it requires is a little examining of your own spending habits and making some healthy changes.

Look At Your Outgoings

If you take the time to go through your bank statements and look at what your spending habits are, you can to begin to address the balance. Can you see any patterns forming? Is every other card payment for fast food or a takeaway coffee? By identifying the outgoings that are not necessary, you can make big changes to saving more money. If you are only relying on your own income in the short-term, you will need to make some sacrifices in this respect.

Look For Compensation If You Are Owed It

Sometimes the reason you’ve lost your job is due to a workplace accident, and you have been unable to work there. If you feel that you are due some compensation, you can go down the legal route and hire a personal injury lawyer to take your previous employer to court. If an employer has treated you unfairly in this regard, you are well within your rights to pursue this further. Just be sure that before you endeavor down this route that you do your research and make sure that this is something that you want to do.

Reduce Your Bills

You may be paying too much for your utilities in the meantime, so contact your suppliers and see if you are overpaying, or try to switch energy suppliers for the best deals. Many energy suppliers provide fixed tariffs, so at least you won’t have to worry about how much electricity you are using or refusing to turn the heating on during the winter. It doesn’t mean you have to go without the essentials. You may also wish to look at your mobile phone contract and reduce your internet data, especially if you have the internet at home.

Contact Your Creditors

If you have mortgage payments and credit card bills, it may be worth contacting them to freeze your payments before you miss one, or if that is not possible, then to pay a smaller amount every month will give you some breathing space in the meantime. If you are paying a credit card bill, it is possible to negotiate a lower interest rate; and if you are paying a mortgage, it may be possible to make interest-only payment for a while.

It can be difficult to keep positive in the aftermath of losing a job, but in the short term you can make these changes and help to keep yourself ticking over while the search for new work is undertaken.


A Lightbulb Moment: Investing In Sustainability

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Reducing your carbon footprint is the big thing on every modern investor’s mind, it’s just disguised as “how can we save money?” Because the great thing about working towards a sustainable world, whether it is renovation and selling your property on, or by using technology to cut down on the amount of paper waste, it is a smart move to invest in green living to get the green. As new investors that are trying to make their way onto the ladder, there are some approaches you can take.

Purchasing green bonds is a good entry point for brand new investors. As the green industry is increasing each and every day, these bonds are essentially a broad term for “debt instruments.” The proceeds are applied to new and current environmental initiatives, and as they can make a short-term profit as well as a long-term profit in the sense of the global impact on the initiative, it makes financial sense to get involved.   

Sustainability is a buzzword in environmental practices. By switching to sustainable products in your business, and by using renewable resources, this is ensuring a better investment for businesses over time. The initial expense can be deemed sizable, but this is then offset by the increase in revenue in the ensuing years. You can learn more from Oil & Energy Investor on the profitability that sustainability in all its forms has on a business. A lot of companies choose to support sustainability organizations, and as the majority of these organizations are not for profit, they benefit from the revenue of businesses that use renewables. As an investor, you can opt to invest in the stocks of these businesses, which would encourage them greatly.

When choosing to invest, it is always a risky venture. A way around this is to invest in mutual funds, and for the most part, you will enjoy better benefits. Invest in green mutual funds, in the renewable industry, or related to the environment. Also, the alternative energy mutual funds are another route which is a sound and responsible investment. If you did not want to invest, then you could start your own green business. If this is something that you can get behind, it is a great way to show initiative in improving the environment. There are several green businesses that require little money to get off the ground. Or if you would rather operate a business in an ethical way, you could buy or sell green products or spearhead green initiatives, such as planting trees around your office or installing renewable power sources.

Renewable energy is a big industry, and it is always increasing in scope. Investing in this industry will allow you to buy many different types of assets or you can invest into renewable energy projects, such as solar panels, or a wind farm. As the energy sources of the last 100 years are slowly dying out, we are, as a planet, looking to the future and how we can preserve the earth. Renewables and going green are essential pillars of the modern world and an essential aspect of investment.

 


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