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.… Read the rest
Don’t look now but your budget gap is showing. It’s the difference between what you think you spend and what you really spend. And it’s not a matter if you have one, just how large of one you have.
How do you close your budget gap? By becoming a spending awareness marauder. If you’ve never created a budget, or if you’re tired of your old budgeting system, the easiest way to get started is to create a minimalist money map.
A minimalist money map is a simple way to take your spending temperature and take corrective action when necessary. Here’s how to set one up.… Read the rest
I’ve been noticing something lately. Something that’s really had me thinking. Life seems to hit those who are most unprepared…the hardest. Especially those who are financially unprepared. I work with a guy (a very nice guy) who always seems to be flirting on the edge of financial disaster.
If it’s not car trouble it’s trouble with the college where his two oldest kids attend. If it’s not doctor co-payments, it’s air conditioner problems. Here recently, he bought a near brand new car (because his other car was about to disintegrate). Turns out this nearly “new” car had been in an accident.… Read the rest
If you haven’t already heard of the “Latte Factor”, it was popularized by David Bach in his now bestselling The Automatic Millionaire.
The basic idea is that you find an insignificant, daily expense, in this case your morning latte, and either cut it out completely or cut way back. Of course it could be the morning paper, the everyday lunch date, the salon, etc.
U.S. News recently put this statement to task, stating that “it might be based on faulty math.” Well, a penny saved is a penny earned, right? Not so fast.
… Read the rest
His [Bach’s] so-called “Latte Factor” includes all kinds of expenses, such as manicures, massages, restaurant meals, and premium cable.
I know for myself, starting a budget really wasn’t that hard of a decision. I had lived with one in college. And once I graduated and was headed to my first job, I knew having a budget would be absolutely essential. No, it’s the sticking to the budget that I have a hard time with. But that’s another post for another day.
But what about those of us (you) who can’t fathom the thought of ever putting together a budget? What’s the final straw/accident/catastrophe that finally pushes someone to do the inevitable deed…put numbers to paper?