finances

Make A Resolution To Improve Your Finances This Year

Whether you’ve found yourself in a tricky financial situation or you simply never have enough excess cash to fund those luxuries you’d love to be able to afford, there’s always a way to come back from a dwindling bank account. Fixing your monetary situation starts with smarter planning. If you earn minimum wage (which you should, by law, if you have a job) then you should be able to live a happy and secure life. It’s just about knowing how to safeguard your money and only spend it on the things that matter. Make a resolution to improve your finances this year. Here are some pieces of advice to help you with that.

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Get your financial house in order.

If you want to improve your finances this year then you need to get your monetary house of cards in order. Organization is the key to success in all walks of life and this is particularly true with regards to your personal finances. You should form a budget so as to track your expenses and make sure they don’t exceed your monthly earnings. As suggested over at bettermoneyhabits.bankofamerica.com, you can really make more of your money if you know how much excess income you have available every month or every week. Of course, as mentioned on our site before, you should also stop overspending for the sake of reducing your debt or reducing the risk of accumulating debt in the future. We’ll discuss that further in the next point.

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Learn to deal with debt.

You’re probably thinking that the best way to deal with debt is to avoid it altogether, right? Well, that’s actually not the way to approach this “taboo” word. Debt isn’t inherently bad. At the end of the day, we’re talking about the concept of borrowing money. If you borrow money excessively then you’ll accumulate bad (and easily avoidable) debt. The key is to spend smartly (as suggested in the first point) so that you don’t have to borrow money to make ends meet. But many of us need to borrow money to fund expensive things in life such as down payments on a new property for the family or perhaps even a new car.

When you do need to borrow money, you simply need to take on debt that you can afford to repay, as explained over at thebalance.com. That way, you’ll build up a good credit rating and lenders will trust you enough to give you a respectable loan. You should also check out sites such as best.creditcard to do a little research into the best credit cards on the market. The type of card you use can affect the security of your money too. The message to take away from this point is that you should take debt seriously. Don’t borrow money that you won’t be able to pay off over the course of the following months, essentially.

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Set aside some of your earnings.

If you want to save money then you need to think about the bigger picture, as explained over at briantracy.com. Saving just a small portion of your earnings on a regular basis will help your wealth really accumulate over the years and provide financial sturdiness for your family in the future. If you set up a standing order that automatically transfers money to your savings then you won’t have to worry about blowing all your excess earnings every month. You could easily spend your disposable cash today but you need to think about tomorrow.


Road To Recovery: How To Get Your Finances Back On Track

Few things are more upsetting than getting into financial trouble. It can cause problems in your personal life as well as long-standing emotional trauma. The worst thing for a lot of people about financial difficulty is how hard it is to get out of. For many, money troubles are a black hole that sucks up all of their finances and, no matter how hard they try, they just can’t seem to pull themselves out. This can end up causing problems for an incredibly long time so that many people never really recover from a significant financial blow. But don’t worry, however, bad it seems, there are always things that can be done. Here are a few simple ways to get your finances back on track.

Budget

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Setting a strict budget should always be your first step in getting your finances under control. Many people assume that they’re careful with their money but when they actually look at their statements in the cold light of day they’re pretty shocked. Many of us justify making small purchases throughout the month. Surely they won’t make a dent in your finances? The problem is that those small purchases add up over time. By setting a budget that includes a set amount for spending on luxuries, you’re able to avoid impulse buying and ending up with a nasty surprise at the end of the month. Setting a budget also lets you see exactly where you can cut back. Look at your monthly bills and figure out which one’s are really necessary and which one’s you might be able to get cheaper.

Downsize your home

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It can be tough, but one of the best things to do to help your finances recover is to move to somewhere smaller and cheaper. Rent and mortgages tend to make up the majority of people’s monthly outgoings so reducing it by even a few hundred dollars will make an enormous amount of difference. If you’re currently a homeowner, then consider selling your property and using the equity from the sale to pull yourself out of your financial straits. There are plenty of rental properties available for very reasonable rates. Remember, this doesn’t need to be a permanent solution, just something to help you get yourself back into the black.

Ask for help

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This is something that a lot of people find themselves unable to do for pretty understandable reasons. A lot of people consider financial trouble to be something shameful. But it’s something that just about everyone will face at some point in their life. If you have a support network around you, then there’s absolutely nothing wrong with asking for some help during a tough time. A lot of the time you can treat this as a loan that you will pay back once you’re back on your feet. The useful thing about loans from people in your life is that they often don’t come with the unreasonable interest that many banks will include on their loans.

 


Track Your Credit Score Effortlessly So You Can You Can Borrow Money!

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Too many people are unaware of their own Credit Score and misunderstand fully why we have them. Your credit score can have both vast rewards and exponential pitfalls, which effect an adult in almost every aspect of their lives. Taking an interest in what your Credit Score looks like and what effects it, will make it more likely that you can live the life you want and not just what others say you can!

Your own personal Credit Score, which you can get for free & well as tons of free information about improving your credit score, is produced by a system that calculates how reliable one is with their money and determiners how likely a person is to repay money to a Lender. The reliable likenesses is determines by many factors like your overall debt, types of, and how many, bank accounts you have, number of late payments and how old the current information is from when you are asking to barrow money from a lender. All significant financial history is recorded on a Credit Report and determines your overall Credit Score from 300-about 800. (The higher the number, the better the Credit Score.) Lenders can be individuals or companies that are allowing you to take out a line of credit in either cash or check form. This could be bank, a school, a private or commercial renter of apartments or/and houses. Which can result in all sorts of influences of your lifestyle?

credit-scoreOne in ten Americans are denied a job because of their Credit Score.  There is a source that can help people get cash even with bad credit, online payday loans no credit check, however this doesn’t work for all. Many people with poor credit are unable to get a car, cell phones, or cannot barrow the money required to buy or put a down payment on, a house! Even the amount of interest on the borrowed money that the lender demands you to pay back is a direct result of your credit score!  All of these factors, and so much more, can drastically effect the chances of being able to improve a credit score. Furthermore if you do not even know what your Credit Score is, how do you know if you need to improve it? If you have not looked at what is on your Credit Report you are under informed on how curtail everyday financial decisions are and which decision effect your future finances.

By using online sites and applications to track your Credit Report and Credit Score using free tools, like https://www.creditkarma.com/, https://www.creditsesame.com/free-credit-score/, and https://www.credit.com/free-credit-score/ not only will you know exactly what effects your score, you can also access your real time Credit Score! Not only do these sites track your credit score & give you free bureau reports, but they also offer top rated advice & additional tools to help you make your credit better.  Many advantages like these are accessible online,  and are reliable tools that need to be used to ensure healthy credit.  Learning about your credit, and the best ways to improve it is also imperative to keeping your credit healthy!  Useful alerts from these major credit report companies are able to notify you of any unauthorized information that has been recorded as an added defense to keeping your credit healthy!  With all these major tools at your disposal, not only tracking your credit, but keeping it health is much easier than ever before!


China planning to curb Internet finances

The growing Chinese Internet finance industry has been imposed with strict regulations by the Chinese authorities in line with the alleged fraud in the industry over the recent years. The online peer to peer (P2P) industry in China has over 3800 operators, of which above 1200 such firms are allegedly involved in illicit dealings with customers. Some of these firms have been known to be whisking away with the investors money while many have closed down as per reports by Wangdaizhijia, known to be a source of industry data. The worth of the Chinese Internet finance industry is about 133.1 billion yuan ($21 billion).

Several basic guidelines were issued by the Chinese regulators to the Internet finance industry in what is known to be a 6000 word long document. The guideline specifically seeks to categorize the running models in the Internet finance industry and issuing customized regulations for the models. The industry regulators must take care of this and try to classify several models running in the industry as per the regulations by the Government. In return this will create a clearer picture for the Government and help them get a better hold of the Internet finance firms.

The industry has been categorized into six factors of operations namely Equity crowd funding, Internet loans, Internet insurance, Internet trust and consumer finance, Internet payment and Internet sale of funds. The operation guidelines have made it clear that separate regulatory institutions must be assigned to different categories which would help the authorities to have a better grip on the operations of the industry. As reports suggest, The Peoples Bank of China has been assigned to keep a tab on the mode of payments done online, while the online selling of funds, equity crowd funding will be supervised by China Securities Regulatory Commission and thus help curb illegal trade. Internet security, self regulation of industry has been taken care of in the regulations while confusion still persists about the role of participants in the Internet finance market. All these can be seen as a welcome change as the industry is known to have been involved in a network of illegal trade and negotiations.


How to Save Buying Household Items

The first time I checked this website I realized it talks about understanding your own money. At least that was its motto. I thought to myself what could that mean. It was not too hard to find an answer. This website is about understanding your money and its buying power and how you can use it to make the most of it whether you buy a new car or you invest in a new bustling company that needs people who believe in its ideas and values.

I also realized that people do not only come to these websites to talk about investments in stock markets and so on (I previously believed it was the only reason). Apparently it regards all financial transactions, as I mentioned before, starting from investing to businesses and ending with buying some appliances below the market price. I will talk about the latter. It is always nice and lovely when you can buy something below the market price. For example, you want to get a brand new laptop, but it just costs too much. What can you do to change that? The answer, my friend, is simple. You need to go to an online store that sells such items and also go online to find coupons that will reduce the price drastically.

aiffcs5wqlh5yozwrgrdIn this case I would recommend using Sears coupon codes because it saves a significant amount of time and also money because it is much easier to find a Sears coupon online that suits your needs than any other store. You can also enjoy good service of this store and ‘shop till you drop’ because it has a lot more to offer than any other online store. To be honest, there is no need to review the items that are available at the store because there are so many. And with new Sears coupons you can save incredibly. Ok, I will give you one example. Let us suppose you are shopping for a new laptop. The one you really want costs 700$, that is 150$ above your budget. You go online and find Sears promo code for electronics, get one which gives you 20% off electronics over 300$ dollars, hence you save around 140$, your laptop now costs 560$. Still a bit too expensive you say? Well, get another Sears coupon code for free shipping no matter your location and you save further 10$. Now you can afford the laptop of your dreams; just imagine how jealous all your co-workers will be on Monday morning when you show up at work with such a beauty.

All in all, when it comes to finances, all of us want to understand our money and its buying power and want to exceed the limits with as little as possible. Whether you want to invest in some stocks at the market or you want to buy something nice that you need online, you always want to save as much as possible. You can always come to this website for advice how to make the most with the money you have, therefore, when you need to shop online, just use Sears coupons, because they will help you realize your money the best.


3 Ways To Spice Up Your Accounts With Spreadsheets

Noting all your accounting and financial information for your business or personal finances can be a pain. Whether it’s for your accountant or financial advisor, or your own tax or financial records, it’s a chore that is difficult and sometime complicated to achieve and can become a real problem at times like accounting and tax-year ends when information needs to be nicely organised.

Which is where spread sheet come in, particular Microsoft Excel which the majority of people use and understand, although others apply similar principles for example Google Spreadsheet or Apple’s version called Numbers. If you’re already familiar with these you will appreciate how you can easily open and add information there and then, or if you’ve never really used them then they appear daunting.

glassesHowever in reality they are just a way of writing things down on your computer, even if you just tap numbers in and press the ‘enter’ button each time to go down to the next line, you can always pass this to an accountant or whoever to then use the basic information.

Here are 3 ways to spice-up your spread sheets rather than just lists of boring numbers. Ways to more easily present and actually use all this accounting information at your fingertips, and easily applicable even if spreadsheets are new to you:

1. Rows & Columns – make use of the spread sheets moving both horizontally and vertically and therefore the full 2 dimensions. So instead of listing just one column of figures, use says the rows to match the types of expenditure and income and then columns as different time periods e.g. months of the accounting year. This time/type split is popular, although can be vice versa with time on the rows.

2. Tabs – each spread sheet file has a separate ‘sheet’ or ‘tab’ within it, often accessed from the bottom of the spread sheets. Just click the new tab, and a whole new sheet appears. This is great for including everything in one file rather than having endless files everywhere, for example different types of accounts like profit and loss or balance sheet.

3. Colours – a simple addition that can make a huge difference, particularly for those who are visually focused. Numbers can be made red for when say negative values, sections of important figures or rows/columns of figures made a different colour, and even sections of data different colours, for example certain types of expenditure within one category.

On final advanced tip is the use of charts and graphs. These will appear far too complicated to use when you first start, but once you get the hang of how they are created and what information on your spread sheets to use they can be easily used to produce impressive visual impressions of otherwise streams of raw financial figures.

A final point as well is that spreadsheets can exist online now rather than just on your computer. Traditionally they are software programmes, particularly excel, where you open it on your own computer and everything is stored on your computer. Online spreadsheets are on a website, so everything is saved online – the advantage is that they can be easy to access and use, and able to be shared with others, the downside is that they can have limited features.

Andy Nuttall is from The Website Designer and the BEST range helping source the right local businesses.


Tips for Getting Your Finances in Order

Your FinancesIt’s that time of year again.  When we start analysing our bank statements and credit card bills, as well as reviewing the fixed rate savings, cash ISAs and personal pensions on the market.  Once the festive season has been and gone, the financial season is well and truly upon us. Yes the new financial year and ISA season is a few months down the line, but now’s the time when we vow to sort out our finances and actually stick to the plans we put in place.

Here are a few tips to help you do just that.

Review your budget – or create your first one

You can’t save if you don’t have a budget. First start by documenting all your income – this will include your monthly salary, any benefits you’re entitled to and any interest you earn on your existing savings. Then you need to track all your outgoings. Your necessary expenses such as bills, rent etc are immediately apparent, but it’s the rest of your spending which is much more difficult to keep track of. Keep a diary of your spending habits so you can track everything you spend, such as your weekly fuel costs or what you are outlaying for food, and once you start doing this it will become easy to see where you can cut back, as well as how much you can save.

Develop a strategy to pay off your debt

You need to get rid of those credit card bills and your bank overdraft. Consider transferring your credit card to one which offers incentives for balance transfers so you can start paying off the debt rather than just the interest. Set aside a lump sum each month that covers more than the interest which will mean living within your means but it will be worth it a few months down the line.

See where you can cut your necessary expenses

Car insurance and your energy bills might be necessary expenses, but it doesn’t mean you can’t look to cut down on these costs. When renewing your car insurance don’t automatically renew; if you shop around on comparison sites you may well find a better deal. The same applies to when it comes to your energy bills. If you quote your existing tariff to a new supplier they’ll always try and beat it to secure your custom. Once you do change also elect to pay by direct debit, as energy suppliers offer better rates to customers who agree up front to meet the payment deadlines.

Other ways to improve your finances include reviewing your savings accounts – whether it’s a fixed rate, instant access or a Cash ISA, as well as checking up on your pension options, whilst also reviewing your living situation, will all help.  Getting your finances in order can be a difficult process, but it’s well worth it.


Avoid Bankruptcy with these Helpful Tips

Avoid Bankruptcy with these Helpful Tips

The decision to file for bankruptcy should never be taken lightly and should only ever be considered as a last resort. Dealing with unmanageable debt, before it’s too late, is the key to avoiding bankruptcy. For some great tips on how to regain control of your finances, follow our guide for avoiding bankruptcy below.

Devise a Money Plan

The reason why most people become in debt is simply because they are spending more than they are earning. Understanding the incoming and outgoing of your money can help you to determine where you are spending too much and where you could be saving. Create a budget that outlines your expenses for monthly, weekly and daily intervals. Creating the most straightforward approach to understanding your money is the key to success.

Take Steps to understand your Finances

Money calculators and professional advice can help you to better understand your finances. While budgeting is a step in the right direction, for better understanding your finances, taking measures to compare existing loans and investments can help you to save a great deal of money. If you’ve had the same personal loan and credit cards for many years, for instance, you may be surprised by what is now on offer in the market. Finding better value loans and credit cards can save you thousands of dollars each year.

Understand Bankruptcy

While in some cases bankruptcy is unpreventable, it is important to understand the seriousness of filing for bankruptcy. In Hollywood movies, bankruptcy is often glamorised, making it appear to be a win-win situation for people struggling financially. The reality is, however, that bankruptcy comes with many consequences that may affect your life for many years to come. If you do become bankrupt, many of your assets are likely to be sold, such as your house, motor vehicles and any shares you might own, including assets which have been purchased with another person.

As aforementioned, sometimes bankruptcy is unavoidable, but understanding the consequences can help you to see the importance of staying out of debt.

Create a Plan of Action

Plans are basically useless until they are put into action. Creating a budget and analysing various loans is great, but you must take the steps to ensure that changes are being made. Your budget, for example, will only be successful if you stick to it. If you are having trouble maintaining your new budget, make a plan to talk to a debt solution specialist who can assist you in creating a budget that works for you.

Determining your financial goals and planning around these will help you to discover what needs to be done. There are a number of different ways to eliminate existing debt, so be sure to explore every avenue. Debt consolidation lenders can provide invaluable assistance for reducing your debt, while saving you thousands of dollars each year, through decreased interest rates and lower repayments. Once you have devised your plan of action, it is time to set the wheels in motion.

Tara Blair is a personal finance, business and travel writer from Brisbane, Australia. She says that the decision to file for bankruptcy should never be taken lightly and she recommends people consider looking at debt consolidation lenders as a solution to their problems.


Five Tips to Help You Streamline your Finances

Five Tips to Help You Streamline your Finances

Effective financial management has become more and more important for the average household in the current financial climate. Many people have taken steps to try and streamline their finances in a bid to make it easier to manage their finances and there are a number of ways in which you can try and do this. Even small steps to streamline your finances can make a big difference, so it is well worth taking out some time to look at your outgoings and your finances in general. Some of the steps that you can take include:

  • Log down your finances so that you can keep track of them: It can be very difficult to keep track of your finances if you have no written record of what’s coming in and what’s going out. Make sure you log down your income and outgoings so that you see at a glance where your money is going. Being able to track and monitor finances is often a big part of the problem for many people who struggle to stay on course
  • Reduce the fees you pay: Being charged fees for late payments on bills and credit cards can be a big issue and very draining on the finances. To reduce the risks of this happening set up direct debits for all of your bills and credit cards so that the payments go out on time and for the right amounts without you having to take any further action
  • Check your accounts regularly: It is surprising the number of payments some people are making without even realising it, such as magazine or other subscriptions that they had forgotten about. Go through your statements and accounts regularly so you can keep up to date with everything that is going out of your account and make changes where necessary to reduce outgoings
  • Look at your savings accounts: Some of us have a number of different savings accounts with a little bit of money in each – these may be accounts that we have had for years and in which there is only a small balance. If this is the case, amalgamate all of the balances into one account – even though it may not come to much, there is more chance that it will earn interest in one larger sum than a number of little ones
  • Be accurate with your outgoings: Some people tend to us approximate figures when logging down their finances but this can confuse matters as it make it more difficult to see what has gone in and out of your account and what the end balance should be. If you are using your overdraft this could even send you over the limits, as you cannot keep track of your account balance accurately.

Jane spends her time advising people how to manage their finances, covering everything from good investments to where to find a good mortgage. She also blogs for a payday loans UK blog.

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Why being a financial pessimist sometimes helps you in making the right decision

Why being a financial pessimist sometimes helps you in making the right decision

No one is going to encourage you to become an out and out pessimist because negative Nellies are not pleasant to be around. However, there can be advantages to pessimism when it comes to handling finances. Pessimists tend to have more money than optimists.

A pessimist is one who perceives a half-filled glass as being half empty, whereas an optimist perceives it as half-full. That may be a rather sophomoric way of describing a pessimist but you can get the gist from this example.

A pessimist tends to have buyer’s remorse before he purchases something, rather than after the fact like most of us, and as a result doesn’t buy it at all, which saves him money.

A pessimist possesses a negative streak a mile wide. He is full of doom and gloom and is certain the sky is falling, which isn’t a very pleasant way to go about life; however, this attitude may keep him from going broke.

It is more pleasing to be around an optimist than a pessimist, although the over cheerful person can get on your nerves and rub you the wrong way at times (Quit smiling!) There doesn’t seem to be much of a benefit to being a pessimist but, in fact, there is.

There are times when pessimism is far more beneficial than optimism. Pessimists tend to be more exact in their assessment than their life-is-grand, isn’t-everything-wonderful counterparts.
Because of this approach to life, pessimists tend to do well in business, and with money, because they are realists and have a strong grip on veracity. The world is never seen through rose colored glasses when you are a pessimist. They call it as they see it, which is sometimes doom and gloom, but they are often right.

When the country is in dire financial straits, the pessimist believes this is a permanent condition while the optimist thinks it is temporary. The pessimist plans accordingly, which means he is probably more frugal than the optimist.

When something good happens, such as a financial windfall, the pessimist is certain this isn’t going to last and, once again, reacts accordingly and takes very good care of that money unlike the optimist who thinks the financial boon is going to last forever and may be a bit more reckless with the cash.

We’ve all known someone who is absolutely certain that the stock market is going to crash, the banks are going to close their doors and another Depression is right around the corner. They’re the ones who keep their savings stuffed in an old athletic sock that is stashed in the back of their closet. This seems a bit histrionic and paranoid but, on the other hand, in the off chance that their pessimistic outlook is right, they will have access to money whereas the rest of us won’t.

Now about that optimist … Optimism is fine but it shouldn’t be taken to the extreme, according to Manju Puri, professor of finance, and David T. Robinson, professor of business administration, both employed at Duke University Fuqua School of Business. These professors are the authors of Optimism and Economic Choice (2007.)

They report that those who are excessive optimists fail to do long-term planning, don’t have much of a savings if any and rarely pay off their credit cards. However, when someone is moderately optimistic they are more likely to save money, pay off their credit card balances, work more hours than the extreme optimist and believe that their income will get bigger in the next five years.

Ironically, extreme pessimists often perform the same way that extreme optimists do but for dissimilar reasons. An extreme pessimist may think that everything is unequivocally going down the tubes and there is virtually nothing that anyone can do about it so why get ready for the future, and this includes saving money, so he doesn’t. Whereas, the extreme optimist is so convinced that things are going to work out that he doesn’t have any need, financially, for a safety net. Different approaches but the same result: No money when they need it.

A pessimist tends to zero in on problems and potential disaster while an optimist only sees what is heartening and does not recognize possible obstacles. In this respect, a pessimist may be smarter when it comes to making investments and in the way he spends his money. He is more cautious.

There is a need for restrained pessimists in the world because they are in tune with reality. A reasonable pessimist is practical and that is a good thing to be, particularly in business and when handling money.

It may be that the person who has found a healthy balance between optimism and pessimism does best when it comes to finances because he is realistic while also being hopeful.

Author Bio: Patrick Del Rosario is part of the team behind Open Colleges. It is one of Australia’s pioneer and leading providers of online TAFE courses and business management courses. When not working, Patrick enjoys blogging about career and business. Patrick is also a photography enthusiast and is currently running a photography studio in the Philippines.

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