Archive - Financial Planning RSS Feed

3 Excellent Behaviors you need to Stay on your Budget

When it comes to Budgets most people have few problems making a budget.  The problem comes when it is time to maintain that budget, and that’s where most fail miserably.  Like most things in life a person starts on their budget with great intentions and positive thoughts but, like a diet plan or a gym membership, those plans can sometimes quickly go out the window.

If you don’t want that to happen to you there are three behaviors that you need to possess to stay on track of your budget.  Read below to find out what they are and, if you don’t have them, how to get them.  (You’re on your own with the diet and exercise. Sorry.)

The first is to stay motivated. Like anything in life if there’s no motivation to do it there’s a good chance you’re going to stop.  For example, with a diet your main motivation may be fitting into those size 2 jeans that you’ve had your eye on at the store.  With a budget you can use something similar.  You can, if you like, reward yourself for sticking to the budget by purchasing those jeans or some other new clothing item.

Secondly you need to keep a positive attitude. This can be difficult because you may be sacrificing some of the things that you really love to stay on your budget but, if you let your attitude go south and get all negative, the likelihood of failure increases greatly.  Instead remember why you’re on a budget to begin with, because you want to build wealth and get out of debt, and keep in mind how great it’s going to feel once you have accomplished those goals.

Finally, having realistic expectations is paramount if you want to keep to your budget successfully. When you set your goals too high you will inevitably fail and become disheartened at the whole process. Better to set smaller, shorter, more achievable goals that you can meet and, once you’re able, start setting them higher.

There you have them. 3 behaviors that, if you can get a grip on them, will make staying on budget a lot easier and reaching those goals a lot more possible.  Good luck and stay positive.


Personal Finance Advice That Takes Only Minutes To Read, But Will Help For Years To Come

Do you desire to make life-long financial changes for the better? This is something you can do, but you must invest some research time. There is thankfully a ton of advice to been had here in this article.

Paying off any credit cards that have high interest rates should be your priority as you seek to pay down your debt. While you may personally prefer to pay all your debts at the same rate, zeroing in on those with high interest rates benefits you in the end. This is very important, since credit rates are expected to rise soon.

From every check, take out savings first. Saving the money that is “leftover” will leave you with zero savings. Knowing this money is put aside for savings, it helps you to create a budget and avoids the temptation to spend it.

Young people wanting to build up their savings can go far by understanding and taking advantage of the magic of interest compounding. Get yourself a good savings account and set aside a portion of your earnings.

Being aware of the value of one’s possessions can help prevent financial loss. When you sell a vintage item, you may gain some personal wealth.

Plan for your taxes so you can get on a better track with personal finance. Think about the investments of pre-tax income you can make through your employer. Keep some money away for medical expenses. Sign up for any employer-matching 401K programs offered at work. Wisely using your earned money makes good financial sense.

Give yourself a monetary allowance so that you do not completely deprive yourself while building up your savings account. Use the budget to purchase things that you want. When you hit your budget limit for the month, you should understand that you are done with entertainment purchases until the next month’s budget begins. Your budget will remain in tact, and you’ll still be fairly happy.

You may not know it, but when you pay full price, you are paying too much. Don’t feel like you need to be loyal to specific brands, and concentrate on buying only when you have a coupon handy. As an example, if you usually purchase Tide laundry detergent, but presently have a money-saving coupon for Gain, purchase the Gain and save some money.

If you are barely surviving, it might be a good idea to get overdraft protection. Although you may have to pay a little extra each month, the fee for overdrafting could be as much as $20.

One way to save money is to cut off your cell phone. While this is not the most popular way to save money, cell phones are not a necessity. Actually, your smartphone and PDAs are a matter of convenience more than anything. Look at your plan and see if it is possible for you to cut some of the costs, at least.

In order to get the most out of the property that you own, take steps to control the cash flow in to and out of it. Keep track of your income and how much you spend so that you can see how your property is doing after every billing cycle. Be sure you have a firm property budget established to refer to as a guideline.

Set up a bank account that automatically takes a few dollars each month and saves it if you want to save quite a bit of money. This is an excellent strategy which helps you to manage your money much better each month. It is also helpful if you are saving for a big event in the future, such as a wedding or a special vacation. 

You should now have a clearer understanding about personal finance. With all the information provided by this article, you now have the necessary knowledge to manage your promising financial future. All that remains up to you is to be determined and strong willed to build a strong financial future for yourself

Personal Finance for Young Professionals

Investing to improve your personal finance can be a particularly tricky situation and there are different roads to achieve this common goal. It is entirely dependent on you to decide how you want to save your money, but we will surely lead you to get the best routes!

Investment market is the best way to save some money as well as discover some returns. Many young professionals think of the present only and fritter away money in chase of happiness now. However, what they forget that the infinite future lays ahead when they would also need to meet other commitments in life. Therefore, it is always wise to plan for your future now and here.

Story of Dave Ramsay

You must plan for your financial stability unusually early in life. In fact, you must think about it as soon as you are out of the hallowed portal of college! You can darned well see the example of Dave Ramsay who became the youngest brokers to enter the Graduate Realtors institute in Tennessee.

Nevertheless, with the Tax reform Act initiated in 1986, Dave’s financial support began to falter. Dealing in notes led him to bankruptcy. He was not left with any finance in hand, but he was not running low in spirits. He analysed his awkward plight and put his book out called Financial Peace to assist young Americans towards financial security. Dave Ramsay has been instrumental in preaching the tit-bits of financial investing via television and radio.

In a dilemma- mutual fund or 401k plan

Most young professionals are in a dilemma as to where and how to achieve financial security. Most people will encourage them for stock and mutual funds, but before that, he must line up his salary and budget. He must organize the budget such that it is not particularly tough but is still not extremely flexible. Employers will also provide you with 401k plan, which cpuld be a compelling choice because your employer will give you the idea that will fit your availability of funds, but yet again, you must know where your money is being invested. Do not use 401K plan in the emergencies, as it would cost you penalty taxes.

Mutual funds are exceptionally strong options for people who want to invest further on. For example, a young professional can invest in small rise with calculated risks or high growth with many risks. There is the multi-sector, short-term corporate and so on investment category.

Use the credit card judiciously

Many young professionals overused the credit cards and quickly caught up themselves in the dire financial situations. Use credit card with a responsible approach and do not be trapped in the marketing gimmicks of shopkeepers.

Attain information about investing

Try to understand the distinctive schemes yourself and keep your eyes and ears open to different financial schemes to save the hefty fees of the financial adviser or broker.

Now I CAN be a Race Car Driver


As if you needed another reason to aim high: Ambition makes you happier, says new research.

People who set themselves ambitious goals tend to be more satisfied than those with lower expectations, says a study published online in the Journal of Consumer Research.


Why Prices Go Up – Inflation Explained

As prices rise slightly year after year, most of us take little notice – it’s not until you look back and remember how much you paid for your milk, your newspaper or even your home, compared to the prices now, that you realize just how much prices have crept up.

This creeping is called inflation and is actually far more orchestrated and deliberate than you may realize since it’s something you don’t notice until long after it has happened. Inflation occurs in every country in the world and understanding how and why it happens can help you find ways to minimize its effects on your life.
Continue Reading…

Teaching Kids the Right Financial Mindset

The following is a guest post from Steven Stanich of Financial Planning Tips

I know that many of the great money management skills I have came from my parents, especially when it comes to saving money. And there are definitely certain things I’ve had to learn on my own, and certainly some things I could improve on.

But what if you could teach your kiddos from early on how to be personal financial planning superstars—such that you’d never have to worry about their financial health?
Continue Reading…

A Daily Plan to Improve Your Finances – and Life

Quality of Life

Like most things worthy of our time, getting our finances in shape doesn’t happen by accident. It happens by making deliberate, good choices every day. Each choice might not seem like much but, on a cumulative basis, will have a lasting impact over the course of our lifetimes.
Continue Reading…

Lessons in Cash Money

Cash Money

Forty bucks. Forty bucks burning the proverbial hole in my pocket. I’ve been a debit card guy my entire working life. But not this week. For the first time in more than 10 years, I have a small wad of cash strapped to my wallet.

I’ve been frustrated for just as many years with my inability to sock away much of anything. I don’t have a lot of debt but not much in savings either. In fact, if it weren’t for my company’s generous retirement plan, I would have exactly zero saved.
Continue Reading…

Having The Talk with Your Kids

Do you (or did you) dread that day? You know, the day you knew you had to sit down and have “the talk”? Yes, I’m talking about the money talk. This has been a hot topic in my household lately. Our three kids are certainly old enough to be helping around the house.

And so the debate was tossed around the house recently. Do we pay for chores? If so, how much? How many chores should we pay for?

If you’re having trouble getting into the money conversation with your kids, Jean Chatzky, personal finance book author, is spearheading a site just for you.

Her website,, walks parents through the how-tos of a money talk. [The site’s] focus [is] on Chatzky’s sample questions and answers, such as:

If money is tight in our house right now, what do I say? “That money is tight in your house right now. Believe me, your kids already know this. They sense the tension. You can bring down everyone’s blood pressure by talking and empowering your kids to help you save on the family budget.”

How long should a money talk last? “Don’t force yourself to adhere to a timetable. Even a 15-minute conversation over dinner can make an impact . . . and assuming it goes well (which it will), you leave the door open for follow-ups.”

What if I’m asked a question I don’t want to answer? “You mean like, `How much do you earn?’ It’s OK to dodge that one, because you don’t want to be the cause of competitive earning in the neighborhood. Twist it, and say: `Let’s talk about how much it costs us to live as we do.’ ”

I came from a household that was mum on most financial topics. It wasn’t until after I started college that I began to understand the depth of my ignorance. I didn’t know how to write a check much less how to create a plan for my money. Money was one of two things—in my wallet or not in my wallet. And when I had it I usually didn’t for long.

If you have kids or are planning to, check out Money Night Talk.

Read more at the Miami Herald.

When you Walk Away from Your Mortgage

I know I’ve been tempted to walk away from my mortgage. I have renters who are taking care of most of the monthly mortgage (not all though). But I’m having to rent another home as a result. While the net financial result is +$400 per month, there’s still a psychological toll. I don’t like being an absentee landlord. I don’t like not being able to check on my house every few weeks.

But what happens when you make that choice? To abandon your mortgage? According to a recent Miami Herald discussion, walking away from your mortgage isn’t risk free.

Yes, it might take as long as a year before you’re permanently evicted. Yes, it may seem like a boon to live in a rent free home during that same period. Even taking the ding in your credit seems like a small price to pay. Everyone’s taking a ding, right?

The biggest wild card for borrowers is whether banks will go after them for the remainder of the unpaid loan or what’s known in the legal world as a “deficiency judgment.” A foreclosure or even a short sale doesn’t necessarily mean that your debt is forgiven.

What does that mean? It means that if a bank determines you have the means to pay (i.e. you were vacationing on their dime while your payments languished) then it’s worth their time to come after you. Obviously, if you don’t have a job then you probably don’t have the means. But even joblessness isn’t as safe a haven as previously thought.

“It is my belief that banks will begin to sell off the money they are owed to collection companies in the coming years that will, in turn, aggressively pursue collection efforts,” says Matt Englett of Kaufman Englett & Lynd, a law firm that specializes in foreclosure cases. “There will be a whole new cottage industry created as a result of this.”

A lender or collections agency (or worse) coming after you may be the least of your worries. You may also owe back taxes. Declaring bankruptcy won’t help you on the tax side. Remember, taxes are forever.

And of course there’s the credit score issue. A foreclosure remains on your credit report for 7 years. This may have even more of an impact in the current economic environment. Whereas lenders (or landlords or apartment owners) may have been quick to overlook past financial mistakes just a few years ago, your poor credit score may not be worth the risk.

Read more about walking away from a mortage.

Page 3 of 4«1234»