Money

Solved: The Biggest Financial Problems Students Will Face

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When we look back on university, we often remember the challenge to get good grades. We completely forget about the challenges of handling money effectively or the issue of paying for everything we need. In some cases, this will be because our parents paid for most of what we needed. Or, because we were lucky enough to get a scholarship for our chosen course. However, the cases of this are fewer than most people realise. For many, college is not just an academic challenge. It is a continuous financial struggle. That’s why you need to know how to deal with the greatest expenses during college and after you graduate.

Living Expenses

If hall accommodation is included in your college fee, you might want just to stick with that. However, if you need to find your own accommodation after your first year, you may want to think of options that will reduce the cost considerably. First, you can think about moving back home, if it’s not a commute that’s unmanageable. Most college students will hate the idea of living at home when they complete their college degree. We understand it’s a complete turn-off. You want your freedom when you’re at college and your independence. However, you have to decide whether that’s worth the financial debt you’ll face after you finish. Another option to consider is having a few roommates. Living with five or six people is financially easier, as you can share costs.

Recreational Expenses

College isn’t just about learning, and you would be wise not to forget this fact. There are parents out there who would love if their kids focused on classes and avoided going out at college, completely. However, if you do this, you are probably going to burn out pretty fast. Unfortunately going out and other recreational activities are expensive. So what’s the solution here? Well, budgeting is key, and you should watch how much you’re spending each month. Have a fixed amount that you can spend and don’t go over it. You might also want to look into getting an interest-free credit card. This is going to make those costs a lot easier to manage. They can build up on the card, and you won’t need to pay them off for a year or two.

Handling The Loan

Of course, one of the greatest financial hurdles is working out how to pay off the loan at the end of your college life. We recommend you look into a nonprofit service loan forgiveness. With this type of service, part of your loan will be forgiven, and you should find it easier to pay. Remember, there are plenty of repayment plans to consider when managing your student loan. It’s a burden; there’s no doubt about that. But it doesn’t have to be one that’s long lasting.

Low Income

Lastly, many grads will find themselves on lower incomes than they expected once they finish college. Unfortunately, this is just a fact of life. If you get great grades, you might win your dream position. But you’ll probably still need to climb the ranks. Living on a low income is difficult but possible, without going into debt. Again, budgeting is key, and you need to make sure you’re not spending over your level of income.


Laid off? Here’s how you should manage your finances now

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Image via Flickr

It’s easy to let emotions take a toll on you after a lay off. However, it’s not that difficult to bounce back either. How do you control your finances when you are laid off? What exactly should be your plan of action when you can’t see the regular flow of money (that you have been used to seeing for the past few years) coming in? It doesn’t matter whether you are in your 20s, 30s, 40s or 50s, there is every chance of you getting laid off – sometimes even owing to no fault of yours. Here a few tips to manage finances after layoff.

A few tips to get back on the financial track after a layoff

It is extremely important to develop the right attitude towards your situation- instances of emotional upheaval are quite common after a lay off. The trick is not to let these emotions ruin your pragmatic faculties. And, you can actually deal with a lay off more effectively if you develop a more realistic approach to the entire incident. Right at the onset, you should realize that this temporary joblessness is not the end of the road for you. The moment you are able to adopt a positive attitude, it will become easier for you to put things in the right perspective and embark on a fruitful plan.

Plan ahead

Spend money wisely even when you are working. Though the thoughts of a lay off are possibly the last thing on your mind, they should be on your mind, nonetheless. Experts always suggest that you should explore all the avenues of saving and utilize them properly- better if you are saving up for six months, so that you are not required to worry even if your joblessness lasts for that long.

Seek avenues to save

Your budget needs a revision for sure. Cut off all avenues of unnecessary expenses. Talking of unnecessary expenses, the first thing that comes to mind is entertainment. If you were dining every week when you were working, consider bringing it down to a single week a month. It is however not prudent to cut off entertainment completely from your life. You need to be in touch with people and grow your network (and we all understand how important a role networking plays when it comes to bagging a job). It is important to strike a balance between your need for entertainment and your finances.

Don’t invest in major purchases during this period of time

Yes, it stands true even if your television set is not working or for that matter, if your phablet is getting old. However, what exactly do you do if something like your refrigerator starts creating problems? Don’t turn a blind eye to it because there are chances of your stored food turning stale and causing unnecessary waste. Do get it repaired or invest in a new one if, required.
Seek other avenues of saving as well. Are you driving your way to the medicine shop- thereby traversing a distance in car which can well be covered on foot? Are you leaving behind the condiments meant for you in restaurants? We generally don’t think about saving up likewise. But think about the kind of savings we can end up with if we pay attention to these smaller details.


ISAs Explained

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Photo via flickr

We would all like ways to maximise our money with a minimal amount of effort, but surprisingly few of us know of one that already exists: the ISA. Although you may be familiar with the term, the chances are that you’re not sure of exactly what it means or the benefits that it encompasses.

It’s time to change that. With numerous boons for those who take advantage of this financial instrument, it pays to know how you can profit from it, and how you can start investing. Read on to find out…

What is an ISA?

As you might already have guessed, the term ISA is an abbreviation, in this case for an individual savings account. It is, as the name implies, a savings instruments, and one that can be highly beneficial to a lot of people.

Essentially, it allows you to deposit a certain amount, without having to pay tax on any money that you make through interest. As it currently stands, the amount you can put into an ISA for the tax year 2016/2017 is £15,240, although this is set to rise to £20,000 for 2017-2018.

There are two main types of ISA: a cash ISA and a stocks and shares ISA. The former acts as a highly popular savings account; the latter as a tax-free wrapper for investments. You can pay into one of each, provided that the total value of both does not exceed the amount stated above.

Who Can Open an ISA?

Part of the beauty of ISAs lies in their flexibility, and taxpayers from every walk of life can benefit from them. The only bar at all is age, but provided that you’re over 16 you are entitled to open a cash ISA, and once you reach 18, you may also open a stocks and shares account. For those younger than this, a junior ISA alternative is available, which can be useful if you’re planning on starting a savings fund for your child or another minor.

How Much Can You Put into an ISA?

As stated above, every taxpayer can invest up to £15,240 for the 2016/2017 tax year. This can be divided between a cash ISA and a stocks and shares ISA in any way that you like, or else invested fully in one or the other.

Come the start of the next tax year, a new allowance is received, and the amount it is set at may vary from the year previously. Over time, this means that savvy investors can earn a significant sum thanks to their tax-efficient savings.

If you want to do more with your money, why not consider investing in an ISA today?


Technologies you Need to Make your Business Successful

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Image credit: flickr

In the 21st century, technology simply has to be a cornerstone of your business. From ordering stock to making sales to customers, technology has a role to play in every part of the business. In this post, we take a look at three technologies that are vital to the success of your business.

Server Memory

In order for the computers on your business network to function properly, you need to have an adequate amount of server memory. If not, your computers will be inefficient, costing you both time and money.
There’s no need to spend thousands of pounds on new computers, either. You can simply get a new server to build in from somewhere like Pinnacle Data. This way, you keep expenditure low while increasing your capacity and making your business more successful. It’s a win-win.

Contactless Card Payments

The most important aspect of any business is sales. The ability to process sales quickly and accurately is vitally important. The quicker you can get customer through the till, the better as you’ll be able to increase the number of sales you make, and that means more money in the till.

Contactless card payments are the best way of achieving this goal. They allow the customer to spend up to £30 in a single transaction, without having to enter their pin. This means a transaction can be completed in seconds.
If you can’t afford to go contactless as a start-up, you should at least invest in card terminals. This makes the process of paying for more convenient for a customer. If you offer cash only sales, people who only have cards on them may never return, meaning you’re losing out on a sale.
Social Media

If you’re looking to increase your marketing activity without spending hundreds or thousands of pounds, then you should invest your time in social media. Channels such as Facebook and Twitter are free to use, and could help you reach an entirely new audience for no cost.

The only investment you’ll have to make is time. It’s well worth considering a social media strategy, too. This way you’ll know how to deal with any complaints from customers that you receive.

To conclude, technology is essential to the success of any business. By investing in these forms of technology, your business will take a step ahead of its rivals, increasing the chance of success.

 


Data: 19% of the internet users spent money on online games

Did you know the experts believe that 19% of internet users have paid for online gaming at one point or another? These gamers shell out the big bucks to advance in levels, get powerups, buy special items and lots more. This can come in particularly handy when playing a difficult level, but if you make use of this option too much, it can add up to a tiny fortune.

What if instead you can get paid for playing your favorite games? All this is possible on online sites like All Jackpots casino. Interested in learning more? Keep reading this article for more information on how you can get more bang for your buck while pursuing your favorite online gaming activities.

All Jackpots is one of the best online casinos on the internet. This prestigious site powered by none other than the unparalleled Microgaming software. This alone guarantees gamers both unbeatable security and high quality graphics when playing their favorite online casino games. And it doesn’t stop there, All Jackpots also provides both beginners and existing gamers access to generous bonuses and promotions that are sure to amaze. For example, their exclusive deposit bonus gives new players the chance to get up to $1,600 in extra gaming cash that can be used to play more games and perhaps win more as well.

On this fine site, you can find lots of slot machines where you can play for free. Playing these types of games will show you how often a slot pays out plus what kind of cash prizes you may get a chance to win.

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dollar key

Another way to figure out what the best pants. Machines are is usually by checking out their payount percentages. The best machines tend to have payout percentatages that are in the high 90th percentile.

To find this information, all you have to do is take a look at the payout table for the particular slot that you are interested in and it will tell you all you need to know. It is also important to note that you shouldn’t count out a slot simply because the payouts are low. If payouts are frequent, even small sums can add up to something decent.

If you are looking for a way to make a decent amout of money and you don’t mind paying out a little more to play, you may want to try out progressive jackpot slots. With these particular types of slots, there’s no limit on the amount of money you can win. Since they have no fixed jackpots, this means that it’s possible for you to win millions of dollars with one good spin. Admittedly, these jackpot do cost more to play, but if you win, it can change your life. And we’re not talking about paying off your bills, but paying off your house, moving to a tropical island and never working another day in your life type of money. Just imagine, what would you do if you won all that money?

Furthermore, online slots aren’t the only way you can make money on these sites. Many of them feature other games, like online poker, video poker, sports betting, baccarat, and more for you to try your luck. In this way, even if online slots aren’t your thing, you can still find a fun way to make your gameplay work in your best interests. Instead of shelling out dough to advance to the next level, you will be the lucky one who makes your online gaming money work for you.

What do you think of the tips mentioned above? Do you have any of your own to share? If so, let us know in the comment section below. We look forward to hearing what you have to say.


Bracing up for Another Economic Crisis: What the IMF has to Say

The International Monetary Fund has rung the warning bells once again. It has clearly declared that the political leaders hailing from different parts of the globe should brace themselves for an economic slump as World Economy is heading for big time stagnancy in the days to come. So, what exactly has led IMF to think on these lines? Let us explore.

Are we staring at another financial crisis?

To start off with, let us tell you that the IMF has actually gone on to bring a number of reasons to the fore – contributing to the impending financial crisis we are presently talking about here.

Firstly, the IMF has held the pessimistic growth projection of the UK from 2.2 percent to 1.9 percent responsible for such predictions at the present moment.  There is major uncertainty clouding the EU referendum. imagesSCAESFWEThe decision to cut down on growth projection from 2.2 to 1.9 percent is even more pessimistic than Office for Budget Responsibility’s forecast of 2 percent at the budget. Surprisingly enough, the forecast came in the midst of hopes that UK is poised to grow faster than almost all the countries, excluding Spain and the US. Not to forget, the poor growth forecast has clearly been attributed to a wide number of reasons including China’s financial crisis and the exposure of the world economy to terrorism and migrant crisis.

Maurice Obstfeld, who is the economic counselor of the IMF opined that it has been too long since the global economy has been too slow. As such, it has very easily become vulnerable to negative risks. According to him if the economic growth is below stalling speed with insufficient demand to escape low growth then it only leads to deflationary equilibrium.

Saddening Projections and what we should do

Much to our plight, the institution’s evaluation made for the bleakest projection since 2009. Policy makers as such are required to devise strategies keeping the possible adverse outcomes in view. Maurice Obstfeld, however, didn’t have words of hope to offer in this respect as well. He said that the policy makers don’t have much time in their hands to prepare contingency plans to deal with possible risks in the future.

The need of the hour is to beef up reform efforts. Countries with scope for better finances should cash in on the record reduction of rates of interest and invest in infrastructural ventures and offer tax relief to the private sector research and development.


Energy Saving Tips that Keep Money in Your Pocket

According to many experts, people in the United States are on unhealthy financial paths that will make it difficult for them to retire. In fact, less than a quarter of Americans have enough money saved to live without paychecks for six months. About 50 percent don’t even have savings large enough to support themselves through three months of unemployment. Living paycheck to paycheck may not seem like a big deal until an emergency happens. When a unexpected emergency happens, though, households simply do not have enough money to pay their bills.

There are a lot of things you can do to start saving more money. Lowering your household expenses is one effective option. By lowering the amount of money that you spend on bills, you can put more in your savings account. Simply telling someone to lower their household expenses, however, isn’t very effective. They need to know what steps they can take to start saving.

In this infographic published by Griffith Energy Services, you will learn about several ways to lower your monthly bills. Something as simple as unplugging your electronics can save you up to $100 a year. Getting rid of an extra refrigerator could help you save up to $200 on electricity every year. When it comes to long-term savings, though, you can benefit from getting a an energy audit that will find inefficiencies like leaking ducts and poorly insulated rooms. You will also want to get your HVAC system inspected. It may cost a little bit now, but it will help you save money for years to come.

Note to publisher:

This is an intro text to an infographic post. You can find the infographic post here:

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How to Start a Finance Blog and Earn Money

START A BLOG 🙂

With more money comes more debt”, I thought aloud as I stared at my laptop screen way back in 2011 – skimming through a series of online finance forums. My brief (3 years) stint as the online reputation manager for the company I worked for earlier, taught me interesting nuances of finances (because I was primarily managing the digital marketing campaigns of the finance companies) — “interesting” because (a) it taught me things which I wasn’t aware of at first and (b) it taught me things differently as I had perceived them before. This was the time when I stopped seeing “money” as a staid entity entailing equally uninteresting equations like “more income= more savings” or for that matter, “more money = less debt”. No it didn’t happen that way. Those people clamoring for advice on those finance forums invariably taught me that understanding the dynamics of money is more complex than earning money itself. Back in 2011, I knew that I would be floating my own start-up soon (which I eventually did in 2012). However, thanks to my ex-colleague’s response to my aforementioned exclamation (With more money comes more debt), I thought of addressing a few misconceptions about finance through a blog. So, the birth of Finance Wand is directly attributable to that moment. He refused to believe that more money meant more debt and I started making him understand that there is actually no difference between someone earning $300,000 a year with debts worth $1 million and someone earning $30,000 a year with debts worth $100,000. I knew most of the people out there thought like he did. And, thus I started my first finance blog with the preliminary of focus on dispelling a few money myths – in my own little way.

I sincerely believe that if you start a blog with a meaningful purpose (rather than only looking to earn from it), it becomes easier for you to earn. If you’re about to start a blog anytime soon and are looking forward to earn money from the same, then going through these points will possibly be of help!

Why exactly do you want to start a blog?

Don’t say you want to earn money. Your readers will not really be visiting your blog to help you earn money! They will come here to seek answers to the innumerable finance queries they have, to “listen” to variant finance stories and to treat them as learning tools to step up their own fiscal literacy, to see if there are others having similar financial problems as they are having or not and to seek possible avenues of improving their own financial behavior. You blog, at least, can act as the starting point for them (when it comes to viewing their financial woes as something addressable and not as a dead end). I started my blog because I wanted to address a few common financial myths. I was sure that they would help readers—irrespective of whether they are in deep financial trouble or not. They would help them realign their financial goals. For instance, there were quite a few readers who found it extremely difficult to prioritize their debts. This stands as a common problem despite the availability of so many articles out there. I personally would ask you to pay off as follows:

  • Mortgage
  • Property Taxes
  • Homeowner’s Insurance
  • Secured debts
  • Federal Income Taxes Federal Student Loans
  • Medical Bills
  • Unsecured debts (starting from the highest to lowest interest ones)

Remember you’re not the messiah

Not even money is the messiah! Yes it does provide security to a certain extent but it does not really go on to ensure an eternal blanket of certainty. The more money you have, the more anxious you’re about saving it! We are not really asking you to undermine your speculative skills (when it comes to trends in World Economy) but make sure you are open to learning. Don’t end up sounding like an invincible finance guru ready to blurt out finance tips and tricks in your blogs. The advice is to be more human. I had read an article where this writer had said that a blogger is like someone sitting at the other end of the table chatting with his reader. I will say that this conversation can be about anything but one-sided preaching. Tell your reader that you’re still learning to mend your fiscal ways but would like to share your learning experience with him. Don’t end up sounding “infallible”. Your readers don’t want that.

Can you really earn money with your blogs?

Yes, you can! However, profiting from a blog is an elaborate proposition. In order to attract advertisers you have to attract readers first. Advertisers are very selective with their dollars. They know which blog is driving 2,000 visitors and which one is driving more than 5,000 visitors within the same time frame. Keep the aforementioned points in view in order to bring more readers.

Get Yourself a Reliable Hosting Service

It is important for you to get yourself a hosting service after you have decided your domain name. My personal experience with Bluehost has been quite fulfilling. The easy-to-use interface helps you to do a number of things at the same time:

  • Completion of domain registration and hosting in one single step
  • The facility to add WordPress blog Installation
  • Add easy-to-install forums
  • Secure support from features like FTP, e-mail accounts and automatic backups

Offered below is the step-by-step procedure to complete the entire hosting process with Bluehost.

  • Visit the Bluehost page through the affiliate link at Financewand.com and click on the Blue Button.

    Get Started Now

1-Homepage

  • Bluhost offers you the chance to register with a new domain name or transfer an existing one:

3-Domain Registration

  • Provide with all your account information here:

4-Contact Info

 

  • Scroll down the packages section. The 36 months package makes for the cheapest one. However, you should not really forget that Bluehost charges the entire (36 months) payment upfront. Since you’re prepaying for the hosting services, you will get a lot of advantages including the money-back guarantee.

5-Choose Plan

  • Then comes the billing info part, where you enter the required billing details. Confirm that you are agreeing with the service terms and then click “next”.

6-Billing Info

  • Your Bluehost account has officially been created. Now you should concentrate on creating a password and log in to the “hosting” section. Bluehost greets you with a “welcome” message after you have logged in. And once you’re in the dashboard, you would require installing WordPress:

7-cPanel

  • Once you’re in WordPress click “Install/Start”.

8-WordPress

 

  • Select the domain you want to install.

9-Install WP

  • Carry on by providing these details and click “Install Now”

10-WP Login

11-Installation

  • After the installation of WordPress, you will receive an e-mail from the Mojo Marketplace. Save the e-mail as it contains your website URL, WordPress Login URL, and WordPress Login username

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  • Click Admin URL which will direct you to
  • This particular notification center will help you retrieve your password:
  • Here are your WordPress Account details. Do not forget to save it somewhere

intall

And, you’re home!

Reach me at Jonny @ financewand . com

Click here to get Started.


You can’t fix your friend’s life by lending him money!

Yes that itself should be reason enough for you not to lend your friend money, when he asks for it but we know how difficult it is to say “no” to the friend who is asking for money because he is in debts or is required to buy something on an urgent basis.

There is no dearth of valid reasons why you can refuse him money – (a) you may not necessarily have the money at the first place (b) even if you have the money you won’t possibly want to give birth to a potential pathological borrower by not refusing him the money. Whatever the reasons may be, it is rather difficult not to “help” your friend out during emergencies. Here are a few ways following which you can truly help out your friend asking for money.

“You” are the one whom you need to convince first

Convince yourself you are right. If refusing the money to fund your needs seems too “selfish” a proposition to start with, then let us tell you that there are several other well-meaning friends/relatives who have already done the same. For some inspiration you can refer to the letter that Ayn Rand had sent to her niece, probably on being asked to fund a dress: http://dangerousminds.net/comments/ayn_rand_worst_aunt. Don’t really be flustered by the headline. Irrespective of what it says, I believe Ayn had actually substantiated her points quite logically.More_money

How to deal with “such” requests

If your friend knows that you have extra money kept aside then make sure that you are telling him or her that you might need the money very soon if not today itself.

Instead, you can help your friend explore other options rather than the immediate option which he has opted for (i.e. asking for money from others). Following are a few

  • You can help him research the affordable debt options that he can avail. You can go on to co-sign the loan as well
  • You can ask him to sell off something which he doesn’t need at this point of time
  • You can gift him the thing he wants (if you can afford to do that) instead of paying the money for the same
  • You can review his finance management skills to find out where he is falling short

In short, you need not feel compelled to help your friend even at the cost of disrupting your own finances. You might as well have been asked by a relative or friend for money yet. However, who knows whether you won’t be asked tomorrow or not? You are the manager of your own finances. And, being proactive remains a significant part of your learning curve (as far as your personal finance management plans are concerned). The more proactive you are with your investments the better adept you are at handling your finances. So learn these tricks in advance. Make sure you are “well-equipped” to handle possible requests with aplomb. The tips offered here, will hopefully offer you the required help. Good luck!

Considering the difficulties already mentioned here, we will never want you to be asked thus. J


Auto Title Loans – 3 Most Popular FAQs of Dummies

Auto_Loan-512Auto title loans are the easiest ways of borrowing money where the lender lends money by using vehicle title as collateral, without even checking credit score of the borrower. Whether you need $100, $1,000, or $10,000 you can get the required cash (to sail through the temporary hard pressed times) in minutes. Car title loans or auto title loans (to say in general terms as these loans can be acquired by putting motorcycle title as collateral as well) are subjected to different regulations in different states of the USA. So, before borrowing such a loan, you must check out all the important information associated with it.

Here are 3 frequently asked questions along with their answers:

FAQ #1: What is a Title Loan basically?

Car or motorcycle title loans are called title loans in short. It is a kind of secured loan where the lender keeps title of the borrower’s vehicle to give loan to the latter. Until and unless the loan amount is repaid in full along with the interest rate, automobile’s vehicle title is temporarily surrendered to the lender. If the borrower fails to repay the loan amount, title loan lender has the right of repossessing the automobile, selling it, and recovering outstanding debt.

Title loans are short term in nature and can be acquired in just minutes. If the loan amount is $100-$500 you can acquire it in minutes. Title loans generally come with high rate of interest, say 35 per cent APR or sometimes even more. The lenders say that the high default risk (because these loans are drawn mainly by people who are already in financial problems) leaves them with no other option but to charge higher interest rates.

FAQ #2: What is the Process involved in Title Loan Lending?

Title loans can be obtained either from store fronts or online. The borrower has to show valid identifications such as driver’s license, income proof, mail proof of residency, lien free car title proof, car registration, car insurance proof, and others. One form involves following of Kelley Blue Book that shows vehicle’s resale value. In many cases, half of car’s resale value is offered by the lender.

Auto title lender doesn’t check credit history or credit score of the borrower. However, he checks vehicle condition and value of the vehicle on which the secured loan is drawn. There are some title loan lenders who also verify whether the borrower has a regular income source or is employed. If there is any financing or lien on the automobile on which you are going to take loan, the lender will not offer you the loan. There is no fixed rate but range anything from 30 per cent to more than 100 per cent APR.

FAQ #3: What are the Auto Title Loan Laws in California?

A very common query among consumers is – how title loans work in San Diego, California? California law doesn’t have many regulations to limit interest charged by lenders in the state. However, auto title loan amount within $2,500 can’t have over 30 per cent interest rate. There is no limit on interest rate charged on loans above $2,500.


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