Showing posts with label Personal Finances. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Personal Finances. Show all posts

Thursday, May 30, 2019

4 Steps to Take Now to Protect Your Finances in the Future

It is important to never underestimate the significance of properly maintaining your finances and planning for your future. Many people spend their lives working in order to save up money and to obtain assets, such as a home or cars. 

It can be difficult to know what the future holds for us, and many unexpected circumstances can arise. This is why it is paramount to take a strategic approach when it comes to managing your affairs and to create contingency plans, which will be helpful in the event that something unexpected occurs. 

The following information will provide a closer look at four beneficial steps you may want to take into consideration, which you can start working on now in order to protect your finances in the future:

Open a Savings Account

Setting aside a specific amount of money each month can be very helpful. As previously mentioned, there will likely be many unforeseen circumstances that occur in your future that can negatively impact your financial state. For example, you may unexpectedly lose your job and potentially have to spend several months or longer searching for a new one. 

You may also develop an illness or condition that may leave you unable to work. There are also other things to consider, such as car troubles and necessary home repairs. If you are not properly prepared for these things and have enough money set aside, it can often cause a lot of potential issues.

Create a Budget

Creating an effective and detailed budget is another important step towards safeguarding your financial future. In order to be able to save money each month, you need to understand how much extra money you will have left over after expenses. 

Therefore, you should take the time to deduct your expenses from your monthly income and closely track your spending habits. If you notice you are wasting too much money on unnecessary purchases, it may be time to cut back and make more financially sound decisions.

Purchase the Proper Insurance

Additionally, insurance is another factor you should consider. You might want to look into purchasing homeowner’s insurance from a reputable company, such as Philadelphia Contributionship. Other types of helpful insurance include renter’s insurance, payroll deduction insurance, and long-term care coverage.

Plan for Retirement and Long-Term Care

Retirement can really take you by surprise if you don’t start planning ahead of time. You might want to speak with your employer to see if they offer any 401k benefits, and you should begin setting aside money on your own. 

You will also need to take into consideration the different types of care you need as you age, which can be incredibly costly. Long-term care insurance, as previously mentioned can be helpful and will assist you with some of these costs.

Overall, preparing for your future finances can be quite challenging. There are many factors you will need to take into consideration. One of the most important tools at your disposal is planning ahead. 

When you take the time to do your research and understand all of your options, you will be able to start saving up and managing your money more wisely in order to ensure your future is secure.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

6 Steps to Successfully Managing Your Personal Finances

If you regularly feel frustrated by your financial situation, you are in good company. Across many income levels, people commonly feel as though they do not have enough money to accomplish their goals. At times, they may not even have enough cash on hand to cover their bills. Paying down debts can seem challenging, and it may feel as though you can never get ahead financially.

Regardless of your income level, it is reasonable to live within your means and to achieve financial goals. However, you must approach financial management strategically in order to do so. These are essential steps for successful financial management.

1. Create a Budget

Managing your money properly without a budget is an impossible feat for most people. A budget tells you how your income is allocated each month. It enables you to find areas to cut back on, and it may help you to determine if you can afford to buy an extra pair of shoes or head to the movie theater tonight.

Budgeting may sound simple enough, but many people struggle in this area. Ensure that your budget is based on accurate numbers rather than hopeful numbers. Use your spending history to ensure accuracy. In addition, reconcile actual income and expenses regularly so that you always know where you stand financially.

2. Trim Down Spending

One of the many benefits of living on a strict budget is the ability to identify areas to reduce spending in. Financial stress often occurs when your spending is very close to your income level or if it exceeds your income level. Most expenses can be trimmed with proper effort, so there may be plenty of wiggle room to work with. 

For example, you may be able to refinance your home mortgage or move to a more affordable rental home. You can make energy efficiency improvements around the house, shop for better rates on Internet and smartphone service, prepare more affordable meals at home and more. With effort, you may be able to reduce regular monthly spending by hundreds of dollars or more.

3. Plan for Short-Term and Long-Term Goals

Your budget gives you the ability to allocate regular contributions for savings and investments. By doing so, you may meet your short-term and long-term goals. For example, you can plan a short-term goal of taking a vacation or getting orthodontic braces for your child. A common long-term goal is to save for a comfortable retirement.

You will never reach these goals without saving money regularly. Therefore, you need to adjust your budget to include regular allocations of funds for each of your short-term and long-term goals.

4. Take Advantage of Modern Technology

Many years ago, personal financial management involved manually logging income and expenses through a handwritten ledger. You may have had to wait for a monthly bank statement or call a customer service phone number regularly to reconcile numbers and to ensure that you did not make a mistake.

Technology has thankfully improved. Banking apps can tell you immediately what your balances are, if transactions have posted and more. You can also use Excel to prepare a fixed budget as well as to keep a running budget for income and expenses. Excel is a part of the Office 365 suite and is available to everyone.

5. Save Regularly

Part of your budget should include a small allocation of funds to a savings account on a regular basis. Healthy personal finances include a well-funded emergency fund. This account may be used to pay for unexpected expenses, and it can help you to avoid relying on credit cards in a time of need.

Many people wonder how much money they need in their savings account. There is not a fixed answer that is right for everyone. Depending on your financial situation and life circumstances, you may feel more comfortable if this figure covered three months of your regular income, six months of regular expenses or another amount. 

For example, if you live in a large house and would need to pay an expensive deductible if you file an insurance claim, you may need more money in savings than a renter may need. You may also feel more comfortable having more money on hand if you are concerned about getting laid off soon, if you live very close to your means and would struggle if even a small unexpected event occurs and more.

6. Focus on Debt Reduction

High debt balances can erode financial security. They can also inflate monthly expenses and prevent you from saving and investing more. Reducing and ultimately eliminating debt is essential for smart financial management. The first step to take for effective debt reduction involves living within your means and avoiding taking on any new debts.

After you have accumulated a healthy sum of money in an emergency savings account, you may then contribute additional funds toward debt reduction. Concentrate any additional funds available to a single account, and focus on this account until the balance is paid in full. You can then move on to your next account. Debt elimination may take years in many cases, so avoid feeling discouraged by slow results.

Wrapping Up

Effective financial management can improve your life in countless ways. Each of these tips can have a profound effective on your personal financial health and security in different ways, and their cumulative results may be life-changing in some cases. Begin applying these steps to your financial management efforts today to benefit from their transformative effects.

Jasmine Williams covers the good and the bad of today's business and marketing. When she’s not being all serious and busy, she’s usually hunched over a book or dancing in the kitchen, trying hard to maintain rhythm, and delivering some fine cooking (her family says so). Contact Jasmine @JazzyWilliams88

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Portfolio Progress: What You Should Do to Expand Your Wealth

Whether you’re a young person just starting off in your career or someone older who hasn’t yet become financially independent, wealth building is one of the most important things you can possibly do. 

Building your net worth will help you reach financial independence and give you stability for your retirement years. Here are four of the best ways to build your wealth and improve your personal finances.

Increase Your Income

To build serious wealth, you need to have extra money to put into productive investments. If you’re only breaking even between your income and your expenses, you’ll likely never be able to set aside enough to become truly financially independent. 

The first step in building wealth, therefore, should be trying to increase your income. In some cases, this may mean continuing your education so that you can get a higher-paying job. 

In others, you may be able to seek advancement in your company or consider offers from other firms that may pay you more. Whatever your situation is, you should focus on maximizing your income to give yourself the free capital you’ll need for your wealth-building efforts.

Talk to a Financial Advisor

Building wealth isn’t easy, and you’ll probably need some expert advice along the way. This is where a financial advisor comes in. Financial advisors can help with everything from investment advice to estate planning, depending on exactly where you are in the course of your financial life. 

A good advisor will help you understand the implications and benefits of different financial decisions while guiding you along the path to financial independence.

Stop Renting

Over a long period of time, few things are as needlessly expensive as renting the home in which you live. If at all possible, you should buy a home of your own. Some companies, like UBS – The Burish Group, know how important of a decision this can be. 

Not only will this save you money over the long haul, but it will also allow you to build equity in the property. Once it is paid off, your home is an asset that will retain a considerable amount of value. 

If you’re still renting, on the other hand, you’re just putting money into paying off a similar asset for someone else without building any equity in the process.

Create a Diverse Investment Portfolio

Though increasing your income and buying your home will help create the basic framework you need for financial independence, the activity that will produce the best results in the building of wealth is investment. 

You’ll need to create a diversified portfolio of investments that will produce stable returns over many years. If you need help constructing such a portfolio, talk to your financial advisor, as discussed above.

These steps, though seemingly simple, will help you get from where you are now to the realization of your personal financial goals. Remember that time is one of the most important concepts in finance. 

The more time you give yourself, the better off you’ll be. Start the process of building wealth as soon as you can to maximize your personal results.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

5 Simple Ways to Keep Your Business Finances Separate From Your Personal Finances

All to often, entrepreneurs do not differentiate their company and individual income resources. After all, you are your company, nevertheless mixing up the 2 will eventually make a mess for you and your accounting professional at tax time.

Even if you're just beginning, it's necessary to break up these 2 parts of your monetary life. Treat your company, small or large, like a living entity. That begins with tracking your expenses in your company separately from your home funds. While at first it may seem like they are one in the same if you are a one-man entity.

Here are a few ideas to show you how to separate your company from your individual financial resources.

Open a business bank account

Begin with your banking institution. Open a business checking account. If there's ever a concern relating to whether it's a pastime or a business, the IRS wants to see if you have a separate bank account.

If you use Quicken or Quickbooks see to it you have 2 distinct accounts: one for home and one for the business. Having 2 bank accounts is tax-smart and it will likewise help you manage your company better.

At the end of the year, all your revenues and costs will remain in one place, making record keeping and tax filing a lot easier. If you attempt to split up all your documents in March or April, you will not have the capability to appropriately keep in control all the cash movements from the previous income tax year. Maintaining good records all year-long will help be you organized and you will have the ability to stay on top of any problems before they get to be big ones.

Apply for a business credit card

Credit is always needed in any small business. Try to get a credit card for your company as soon as possible. Like a different checking account, a charge card will help your record keeping and provide you with something to show the IRS if you're ever audited.

Your business credit card might offer you an additional tax reduction too. If you need to keep a balance on a business credit card, that's the only charge card interest that's tax deductible as an overhead expense.

Keep it legitimate

Think about establishing a limited liability company (LLC) or an S Corp for your business. Seek expert consultants (we suggest this group contain lawyers, Certified public accountants and insurance representatives) and identify which entity makes the best sense, how this company will affect your taxes, monetary practices and precisely what insurance you need.

These types of legal entities will offer you a better level of liability defense, which will be very helpful to your company if ever litigation is taken against it.

When it's income tax time

Keeping bookkeeping accounts, charge cards and record keeping software programs assigned entirely for your business will provide you exactly what you need to send for your income taxes and to show to the IRS that your company in fact is a business. However there are other factors to think about, too.

If you use an office to run your operations from, you've qualified for a deduction, but only if you do this right. Even then, you maybe in for an audit.

Compensate yourself

This is simple if you are a corporation, but is recommended even when you are a sole proprietorship. Allow yourself a salary. Don't go over that amount by paying for personal expenses. Exceeding it just lures you to skim company funds to pay your ongoing grocery or lease bills.

Be prepared

When income tax time rolls around, each of these 5 methods will make filling out forms simple and headache-free. Your company's accounts will be well-organized, enabling you to have a clear peek of how it is doing, where the weak spots are, and where it is prospering.

We truly hope these suggestions help you separate your company and individual financial resources. If you have any additional ideas or recommendations, please provide them in the comment area listed below or on social media networks.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

7 Ways to Use your Personal Finances for Bettering the Lives of Others

Not everyone out there is wealthy or good with money. Some people come across some hard times in their life. 

Having money is one thing, using the money to make a positive impact towards the lives of other people is another. The latter is the more worthy life goal, yet it's often a more complicated goal to achieve. 

Acts of Service

Sometimes people don’t want charity. They don’t want your money. Most of the time it is because they don’t want to be a burden on anyone else more than they have already been. 

Other times it is because they feel like they can’t ask you for money. Well you don’t have to directly give them money. Sometimes it is better to put your money towards food. You can surprise them with a basket of food to help them through their tough time. It saves them from having to spend what little money they might have grocery shopping. 

If you fear they may not accept food from you, then you can invite them over for dinner every so often or you can leave the basket of food on their doorstep. That way they don’t have to know it is you that is helping them out and they won’t feel guilty about accepting your kind gift. 

You can also do other acts of service around their house such as offering to help clean or do some yard work for them.

Invest on Their Behalf

For parents who are looking to better the lives of their children, open savings and investment accounts under their name. 

Even the smallest amount saved today can accrue in interest over a 10- to 20-year time frame, giving your children the financial security they need. 

Give Some Back to Church

Churches use a portion of the money they collect to institute feeding programs and other helpful activities that give back to the community, especially to the needy. 

It doesn't necessarily have to be a church, though. You can give to prayer groups and smaller ministries that are fighting for a worthy cause. 

Participate in Crowdfunding Campaigns

In today's digital age, people are more well-positioned to help others in need. 

Participating in crowdfunding campaigns like Move Your Mountain helps people pay for costly medical bills or cover expensive funeral arrangements. 

Develop Creative Ideas

Product or service ideas that can potentially end world hunger or cure incurable diseases are worth spending a bulk of your personal finances if not all of it. 

Of course, these two goals might seem like unreachable goals from your current point of view, but with enough dedication and financing, you could stumble upon a close enough solution to such key problems. 

Help them with Education

Education is an integral part of progressing in life. Help children get the proper education they need to secure a good future for themselves. 

Sponsoring children not only guarantees their ability to compete professionally in the future but also secures a brighter future for the planet as more people are able to come up with ideas to improve quality of life. 

Make Monthly Donations

Support animal welfare and stop animal abuse by setting automatically deducted monthly donations to your chosen organization. 

PETA, WWF, and other similar organizations are world-recognized for their efforts to help animals in need. Make sure their long-term mission continues by financing their employee's needs.

Having adequate personal finances is not enough to live a spiritually happy life. Redirecting your financial resources towards the right channel multiples your wealth and gives back in other aspects of personal life.

Friday, September 4, 2015

7 Easy Tips for Maintaining your Personal Finances

According to a report released by the Federal Reserve in May of 2015, Americans were carrying more than $11.86 trillion in total debt with over $900 billion of it sitting as outstanding credit card balances. 

As a nation of debtors, it is important for all American to understand how to properly manage their finances in order to maintain financial stability or it will lead to financial strain and suffering.

Managing Personal Finances

Unfortunately, they don't offer classes in high school or college regarding personal finance management techniques. Many people are learning to manage their personal finances via a trial by fire. 

For many, by the time they learn the best techniques for managing their personal finances, they are already well in debt and are struggling financially. It is a shame because simple financial mistakes can end up destroying one's financial security. 

Managing personal finances is the process of finding the appropriate balance between one's income and what they want and need in their lives. Having a budget will let one live with a sense of freedom knowing that they will always be able to afford the things they need and within reason being able to buy the things they want. 

They will also have a good savings in the cases of “rainy days” and other types of emergencies.

Before you over-commit and find yourself fighting off creditors while watching your credit score take a dive, these seven easy tips for maintaining your personal finances might be enough to save the day.

1. Live within Your Means – When that new shiny car or when that new piece of technology comes out, many people jump at the urge to buy it whether they can truly afford it or not. The biggest mistake you can make is renting an apartment or buying a car you can't afford. If you consistently live within your means, financial difficulties will have trouble finding you. When in need of a loan, one can always leverage the equity of their home. It is important to become familiarized with Home Equity Loan Rates.

2. Prepare a Monthly Budget - At the beginning of each month, you should put together a comprehensive cash basis budget that reflects your anticipated income and how you intend to spend it. Having cash on hand is a great way to help you avoid using your credit card excessively.

3. Avoid Using Credit Cards - Credit cards should not be treated as an extension of your buying power and should be reserved for emergencies. The cash in your bank is what you can truly afford. This helps keep your credit card payments low and you out of debt.

4. Track Your Spending - The best way to find out if you are wasting money is to track all expenditures. Over time, it will become clear where cuts need to be made.

5. Use Coupons - Always be on the lookout for coupons online or through the mail. Features like discountrue coupon for can save you a lot of money over a year's time.

6. Purchase Insurance - Buying insurance feels like a waste of money all the way up to the time something happens and you need it. Then it's as good as gold.

7. Avoid Eating Out - On average, eating out costs 200%-300% more than fixing the same meal at home. Surely the time you will spend shopping and cooking is worth the effort considering the savings.

In the long run, it is incumbent on you to know how to manage your finances. The earlier you learn to be responsible with your money, the more likely you are to get to retirement financially secure. That's how you make the golden years special.

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