Saving Money On The Most Important & Expensive Life Events

Life, if you want to live it well, can be costly. Happily, saving money on the most meaningful life events is possible. In fact, if you do the hard work ahead of time and learn what things cost and to save, you still do all the things that are most important to you.  You can even read our strategic tips on this topic in the post below. 

Getting a place together 

When you find that special someone to share your life with it often feel as if the next natural step is to move in together. Of course, this usually means getting a bigger & more expensive place, especially if you’ve only been renting a single room or living with your parents so far. 

In fact, the amount you can expect to pay for a home can differ wildly depending on the size and location of the property you want. To that end, you must do your research on the areas you want to live in before you start booking viewings. In fact, it’s also vital that you check your merged budgets to see how much you have available to spend on rent as well.

Image here

Although it is worth knowing that you can often negotiate a discount on the monthly cost unless you are in a very popular or expensive area. You can also save money by getting a furnished apartment too. You can even buy preloved furniture pieces or even ask friends and family for donations when you move in. 

You may even be able to save some money by buying a home rather than renting one. After all, they often cost around the same in monthly fees. While buying is also a great way to invest your money, and earn back a decent return over the long term. Something that can help you cover the other costs mentioned below 

Engagement 

Once they have lived together for a while, many couples decide to take the plunge and tie the knot. Of course, that means one person has to propose to the other, something that many people expect to come with an engagement ring. 

Picture source

To that end, whoever proposes should budget for the ring ahead of time. After all, it used to be that an engagement ring was meant to cost at least three months of wages! Although as you will discover in this post on budgeting for the perfect ring, this is no longer necessarily the case. In fact, it’s less about how much you spend now and more focused around the style that the other person wants. 

Luckily, this is something you can talk about well ahead of time. In fact, if the person being proposed to is happy with a vintage option, you may be able to keep the costs down even more.  Also, many couples are now deciding to go and look at rings together, making the entire process a lot easier. Although, when looking at rings, it does help to have a good idea of costs already. 

Marriage

The lifetime commitment that is marriage is often celebrated with a large party, something that can cost a vast amount. In fact, some USA couples spend upwards of $25,000 on their wedding day. The good news here is that there are lots of options that allow you to mark the significance of tying the knot without clearing out your bank accounts. 

One is to hold a smaller wedding because such celebrations are often charged per head. That means the fewer people you have, the less you will have to payout. Another option is to elope rather than get married in your hometown. Couples choosing this usually go alone, or with just a few members of their families, and so the costs involved are significantly reduced. 

That is not the only way you can save money on your wedding though. In fact, many people that want a more traditional big day choose to get crafty and make their own decorations and invites. The latter being something that can cost up to $75 per head, and isn’t even something directly related to the big day itself! 

Having a baby 


Picture

Another one of the most expensive life events is when a couple chooses to grow their family and have a baby. In fact, it’s not just the pregnancy and delivery care that will need to be paid for, but all the baby basics as well. Which often include things such as nappies, food, wipes, strollers, and cribs 

One way of ensuring that having a baby isn’t a life event that breaks the bank is to carefully work out a budget of what you can afford ahead of time. Something that will need to include maternity or parental pay for the person taking care of the child, rather than their full wage. 

Additionally, there are some smart choices you can make to keep the cost of having a baby down as low as possible. Of course, the first is to get medical insurance that covers the cost of pregnancy and labor care, as this can save you thousands of dollars right away. 

Next, don’t forget that breast milk is free. Then once Baby starts on solid food, making your own is much less expensive than buying the individual jars. 

You can even get essential baby accessories such as strollers and cribs preloved for a knockdown price. After all, people only use these for a very short amount of time when their baby is young. Something that means they are often fantastic condition, but cost a fraction of the price they would new. 

Summary 

In summary then, despite some of the most critical events in life being ones that could clearly empty out your bank account, they don’t have to be.

In fact, if you are savvy about planning for them in advance, and educating yourself on the costs involved, you will be in a much better position to find yourself a bargain. 

You can also use strategies such as making things yourself, buying preloved, and even getting donations from friends and family to help you keep the cost down. All why still experiencing the most meaningful events in life to the fullest capacity.

Can You Save Money From A Car Accident?

The screeching of tires, the crumpling of bodywork and the inevitable silence afterwards are the things you hear from a car crash.

They are often sounds you cannot replicate and they stay with you forever. It can be a traumatic experience to be involved in a car crash and so, there are plenty of ways you can receive help afterwards.

car crash

However, is it possible that you can still save money from a bad car crash? That’s what you’re going to be thinking if you’re financially minded because car crash repairs and the subsequent legal issues are very expensive.

A whole lot has to be changed or brought back to how it once was including your car and your health.

Far too often people without any knowledge of cars will just take the word of anyone and pay out far too much than they needed to, to get the repairs done.

Here are some ways you can limit expenditure and get back to normal with a boost of cash.

It’s all about the body

Bodywork is one of the simplest parts of a car. Essentially, it’s the outer shell of the car that takes a lot of the brunt from a car crash.

The reason why some bodywork is expensive is because of the brand and model.

A more curvy car takes more time to build and the materials used for lightweight and high strength are also higher up on the sheet of expenses. Let’s start off with the more simpler part of the bodywork, the windshield.

  • The windshield is one of the easiest things to replace and also costs the least. A simple chip could be as little as $50, but a total replacement and fitting can be close to $1,000 depending on the car. The average is around $255 but if you buy a lesser quality windshield that is just as strong but less wind resistant, you could cut this price down by as much as 50%.
  • Door panel dents are perhaps the most common sight behind dented bumpers. Door panels shouldn’t cost that much because they are usually just flattened sheet metal. PDR or rather paintless dent repair is a small section of the car repair industry. They simply sheer off the paint and using a suction tool, pull the dent out of the panel. This can cost as little as $150. Don’t go for a door replacement until you have know your local PDR price range.
  • A smashed bumper should be easy to replace right? Well, it’s not just the bumper itself but the curved metal around it. This can be a simple fix by actually replacing the bumper and keeping the metal bodywork if that has not been affected. However where the really expensive bodywork parts are on a car, are the front and rear. This is because of the curves of the car. The general price can be from $300 to $800 for a repair and replacement service.

Call the manufacturer

it’s 2019 and we’re finally seeing the car manufacturers update their repair schemes.

It used to be that when you bought a car if you bought an insurance plan with it that the manufacturer wanted you to have, you would get it cheaper.

The insurance companies and the manufacturer worked out a deal that works for everybody. However, Volvo has just rolled out with something new.

They have just launched a post-accident guidance scheme which they hope will help drivers of their cars, learn what they need to do to get their car fixed.

The Volvo Car Accident Advisor serves as a go-to mobile app which will take the driver step by step through an emergency checklist.

They will be shown a list of repair services they can call up, advised on what to do regarding the safety of their person and go through a procedure to make their car safe.

How could this save money? Well for one they would offer a competitive service for car repair.

They can also check what parts are damaged using the computer chip in the car and sending information to your phone from it.

This will give you an accurate picture of what you need to repair instead of aimlessly wandering around and paying far too much to mechanics.

Although this has just been rolled out, you should check if your car manufacturer has their own smartphone app you can use to know what exactly needs repairing.

Doing a general examination at a local garage can cost up to around $200 or more.

The disappearance of wages

Car accidents are very financially troubling for a multitude of reasons but the two that you can most look out for will be your lost wages and healthcare costs.

If the car is totalled that will also be a very big loss but if you can no longer go to work and you’re losing thousands of dollars every single month for a long time, your bank account will be very sore.

However, if you have a case whereby you know it wasn’t your fault, you know the cameras have picked it all up and on top of that you have witnesses, then call a car accident attorney.

They can make a case for lost income as well as for physical pain. Who knows you might need surgeries, physical therapy and maybe pain relief in the form of medicine.

Emotional trauma is also something the attorney will look as if you’re not physically hurt you might still be suffering from mental health concerns.

The aim will be to get back all that lost income and make sure you’re still able to pay the bills and live your life normally like you would before the accident.

After the dust settles from a car crash, the financially savvy will begin to see where all the holes are and start plugging them. Lost income due to no longer having a functioning car should be a high priority. You can also see if the bodywork you need can be done cheaper by a paintless dent repair service.

When You’re Lucky Enough To Have Holiday Money Left Over

When going on vacation a lot of people tend to acquire more foreign currency than they hope will be necessary. After all, it is always better to have too much money instead of not enough. Or, perhaps you have simply come home with more money than you expected to? There is certainly no better feeling than to touch back on UK soil knowing you have had a fantastic vacation but haven’t had to break the bank.

emergency fund

However, the only concern is deciding what to do with the unused foreign currency when you get back. Do you simply hold on to it in the hope that you’ll visit the destination again? Do you try and convince your friends and family to visit the holiday location in the foreseeable future so they can swap some currency with you? No, there’s actually no need for such hassle.

Instead, you should sell the currency back. This is the best way to make the most of any unused foreign currency, no matter how much or little. Keeping that in mind, keep on reading to discover everything you need to know about selling back foreign currency…

There are lots of companies nowadays that will give you the option of selling back your foreign currency. Nevertheless, you, of course, need to choose one with care to ensure you benefit from good value. If you walk straight into a branch without doing any research you may find yourself in a position where you feel pressured to go for the exchange rate being offered.

personal money hacks

Without doing prior research it’s difficult to know whether you’re getting a good deal or not. You do not want to leave the branch to discover you could have got a better offer elsewhere. Therefore, instead, you should take a look at the Internet and assess your options carefully first. One tip you can use, though, to minimise the money you need to exchange to begin with is to pay online for holiday elements in your own currency beforehand. If you check out these apartments in Jual Rumah Indonesia, you will see how you can pay online in your own currency, and this could save you a lot in the long run.

The general process you should follow when selling currency is as follows…

  1.    Find a credible travel money company.
  2.    Begin the process online by entering details, including the type of currency you are selling and the amount of currency you are selling. The company will then present you with their offer. If you are happy, you can move onto step three.
  3.    You will then select the branch you are going to take the currency to and you’ll agree on a date.
  4.    You will likely be asked for a few personal details to complete the process.
  5.    Go to the branch that has been agreed upon and you can sell your currency and complete the deal.

Those are the typical steps that are involved. They may differ slightly depending on the company you use. Nevertheless, all travel money businesses should follow a similar sort of process. It is always worth doing your research to make sure the company in question is credible and that they have a good reputation.

Read reviews that have been left by previous customers to get a good feel regarding the general feeling that surrounds the travel money business you are considering. If they have a bad reputation, this is something you should be able to pick up on with ease. Thus you will know to look elsewhere.

One of the most frustrating scenarios that can arise when selling back your travel money is arriving at the bank to discover you are not going to get the same amount that was quoted online. Unfortunately, this happens quite often. If you locate the small print on a lot of websites for travel money companies you will frequently discover that they don’t guarantee the rates that have been presented on their website.

Instead, you will be subject to whatever the exchange rate is on that given day. In a way, this defeats the purpose of setting up the sale online. Yes, it will be more convenient. However, you could still find yourself on the end of a bad deal. Because of this, it is highly advised to make sure you find a company that gives you the opportunity to secure your rate online. By doing this, you know exactly what deal you are being offered and you can be confident that this will not change once you arrive at the branch several days later.

Aside from this, another factor you need to take into consideration when selling back currency is the commission rate that is charged by the travel money branch. This is where you can potentially lose a substantial amount of cash if you are not careful.

a woman at her desk

Sometimes it can put people off selling their currency altogether, because they feel like they are losing out on such a huge amount. This is where your research skills come into play. You should spend time searching online to find low commission rates. You will even find that some of the better companies don’t charge any commission at all.

So now you know all about the best option you have available to you when you have leftover money from your vacation. We have already touched upon some of the points you should consider when choosing the best travel company to sell your currency to.

Commission rates and the ability to secure rates online are evidently the two most pivotal factors to bear in mind. And, as mentioned, it is always a good idea to read reviews that have been left by others. Nevertheless, there are some other key factors you should consider to make certain that everything runs smoothly.

One thing you will need to do is make sure the travel money company has a branch near you. The last thing you want to do is have to travel all over the country to find a firm to sell your currency to. Aside from this, the currency rate itself is obviously vital to make sure you get good value.

It is a good idea to do a bit of research online to get a good idea regarding the exchange rate for that given day on various websites. You will then get an understanding as to whether the company in question offers value or not. Are you in a rush to sell your currency straight away? If not it may be worth holding out until the exchange rate meets a level that you are happy with. There are some companies that give you the option to benefit from notifications every time the exchange rate gets to an amount you are satisfied with.

fun

All in all, hopefully, you now have a better understanding in regards to the best route to take when you come back from your holiday with excess foreign currency. Whilst there may be several different options at your disposal, the best way to make the most of the money is to sell it back.

Nevertheless, don’t simply sell the currency to the first travel money firm you lay your eyes on. Instead, you will need to follow the tips that have been provided in this article. Make sure that the company has a good reputation and that you can secure rates online. Aside from this, a bit of research regarding commission rates and exchange rates will certainly help. If you do this you are assured to be satisfied with the UK currency you get back in return. It is the perfect way to end a vacation.

Claiming Cash That You Are Owed

There are various situations in life where you will find that others owe you money. Now, many people make the mistake of just assuming that this money will make its way back to them eventually.

But generally speaking, people are reluctant to cough up cash unless they are near enough forced to. This is why it’s important that you actively pursue owed cash.

Here are a few areas that you might want to focus on!

clients

Clients

If you work for yourself, you may find that you are owed money from clients. The best way to get this without damaging professional relations is to send an invoice. If this doesn’t work, you can always follow up with a friendly payment reminder via email.

If time goes on and someone is still avoiding payment, you probably won’t want to work with them again anyway, so could always pursue legal action to receive a payment.

Compensation

There are certain situations in life where someone else will hold authority over your overall health and wellbeing. When you are at work, an employer has responsibility to ensure that you are safe and well while in their commercial property or carrying out tasks for them.

If you are in public spaces, on the roads, or anywhere else, other relevant authorities will have to cater to your safety and wellbeing. If you do experience an incident, you should contact a relevant lawyer like a personal injury lawyer or a car accident lawyer.

They will be able to draw together a case and claim compensation on your behalf.

good budgeting

Money from Friends and Family

Generally speaking in life, it is best to keep to the policy of “never a borrower nor a lender be”. But every now and then we will lend money to close friends or members of our family.

Now, it can be extremely difficult to claim money back from people who you have a personal relationship with, as you won’t want to jeopardise your relationship for the sake of cash. They will also be able to use excuses with you that simply wouldn’t roll with professional lenders.

They will pull at your heart strings and you will generally let things slide because you have their overall happiness and wellbeing in mind.

However, there are ways to get the money back. Note why you need the money. Tell them how them not paying you back is affecting you.

These are just a few different situations where you may find that people owe you money. Hopefully, the above information will help you to claim back what’s owed to you as quickly as possible!

5 Essential To Consider Before Buying Your Next Vehicle

Anyone that has ever bought a car knows that there is a lot to consider before you make your financial choice. In fact, it can be highly confusing and even a little frustrating, because just as you think you have considered all the factors, you discover another one to think about. Luckily, you can avoid this if you check out the comprehensive guide below.

#1 Cost

downpayment

For most people, the overall cost of the vehicle is something that cannot be ignored. After all, it does not matter how much you love a particular make or model, if you haven’t got the money, or can’t get the credit to cover it you will have to go with something else.

However, it’s also worth noting that the way in which you purchase your vehicle can affect the cost. This is because you can use credit and end up paying more over the time you are paying it off, yet still be able to meet the monthly payments, and so work it into your budget.

#2 Running cost

Closely linked to the cost is the economy of the vehicle that you wish to buy. This may include the monthly payments, but also the cost of fuel, and how much its uses, as well the other fees such as MOTS, servicing, maintenance, road tax, and insurance.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/K0IkO7OSdqk?start=3

Here it’s worth noting that the better fuel economy your vehicle has, the better for you wallet it will be because you will get more miles to the gallon.  

#3 Age

old car

Next, when researching your next vehicle purchase, it’s essential to consider whether to buy new or used car with your hard earned money. There are two extremes here, with some folks only ever going for brand new vehicles that they can drive off of the forecourt, while others will only ever purchase vintage cars.

Although, many people find that the most economical approach is something in between, which usually entails buying a used car that is still in good condition.

#4 Fuel

picture of an oil rig

Closely linked to the model and the economy factors is the fuel type for the car you are going to buy. Traditionally this used to be a choice between petrol and diesel.

However, as all new petrol cars come fitted with a catalytic converter since 1993, the choice has widened. Of course, that doesn’t even account for the additional options of hybrid and fully electric cars that we are now starting to see on the market as well. The latter being something that will have a definite impact on your vehicle choice if you are concerned with the environment and the potential benefits of this sort of vehicle can provide.

#5 Make & model

picture of a mazda cx-f

Lastly, and for some folks most importantly, the make and the model of the car is crucial to their choice. In fact, some people will only invest in Japanese makes like Mazda because they are known for their longevity and reliability. Others prefer cars built in their native country because they feel they are better supporting the home economy.

Then, when it comes to make, the reviews and the status of the latest model all come into play. Something that you can find out more about here and that should help you to make the right decision when buying your next vehicle.

The Secret To Good Budgeting Is Expecting The Unexpected

“It won’t happen to me!” We’ve all thought it. It’s okay to admit it. Whenever we see someone who’s been adversely affected by an accident or an injury. Whenever we’ve seen someone lose their job or seen their business go into administration. Whenever we’ve seen someone adversely affected by completely unforeseen circumstances, we always assume “It won’t happen to me”.

We sympathize with them, sure. We want to do what we can to help them, absolutely, but something in our psyche refuses to accept that it could just as easily happen to us. That reassuring little voice in your head keeps on repeating “it won’t happen to me”.

Our day to day life carries with it a degree of familiarity that can lull us into a false sense of security. We can kid ourselves that the current status quo will go on uninterrupted forever.

But deep down we know that this isn’t the case. The unexpected could strike at any time and shatter out insulated little bubble of complacency.

When that moment comes, having budgeted will make all the difference between being able to weather the storm and being completely caught adrift in an ocean of panic.

Budgeting made really, really easy

financial resources

We all assume that budgeting is hard. It isn’t. We just tell ourselves that it’s hard so that we don’t feel guilty about not doing it. There are lots of things that we should all be budgeting for but probably aren’t. But we’re about to make budgeting really, really easy for you. Just download one of these household budget templates and make sure that you stick to it, month in and month out. If not, any of the following could strike at any moment and plunge your household into potential financial ruin.

Firing or redundancy

In a capricious economy and a time of geopolitical uncertainty where entire industries seem to rise and fall almost overnight… how stable is anyone’s job, really? Adequate budgeting can insulate you from the risk of losing your job to firing or redundancy. It can help you to bide your time and look for a new job that you want and that will actually further your career rather than leaping into the first dead end job you’re offered out of financial desperation.

Accident, injury or disability

accident or injury

If you’re injured or have an accident in or outside of work that renders you permanently or temporarily disabled, effective budgeting will also help you to find the finances for hiring a lawyer to help to push your disability insurance claim. Failing to budget can leave your finances decimated by such a misfortune, especially given the lengthy nature of a disability insurance claim. A good lawyer can advise you on how to handle the process quickly and help to ensure that your claim is approved.

Unexpected household expenses

picture of a big house

Finally, we never know when our cars might need a new exhaust gas release valve or our refrigerator may go on the fritz. Proper budgeting can help you attend to these quotidian mishaps without having to resort to credit cards or loans which can mire you in debt.

Eight Things You Should Really Be Budgeting For But Probably Aren’t.

No one hears the word ‘budget’ and gets excited. It’s the total opposite. People hear that they should be budgeting and immediately, they shut down, feeling defensive that they should have to stop spending on things that they want and start being responsible.

Here’s a little secret: no one wants to spend their money on the bills and the serious things, but adulthood includes budgeting and spending money on smart decisions. Of course, there’s always room to spend a little cash on yourself – life wouldn’t be exciting without that little surplus for fun things to buy.

However, if you really want to know why you don’t have as much cash as your calculator says that you should, you’ve got to start creating a budget. You don’t necessarily need one of the very many budgeting apps on the market, but you do need to consider taking out a pen and notepad and writing things down.

There is a catch, though. You could be carefully penning all the regular expenses that you have each month, but there are some things that people just don’t budget for and that can be a problem! There are all the usual things that you should be budgeting for every month and keeping track of, but then there are these eight things that you mustn’t forget to account for:

woman writing

Image Source

Home Improvements. If you’re a homeowner, you are the person in charge of repairs and replacements in your home. If the boiler breaks down, there’s no landlord to call and talk to about a replacement, it’s on you to replace it. The last thing that you need to worry about is not having enough budgeted and put by for it, so you should be putting a piece of your monthly salary to one side to account for repairs. Keeping your house in good order is going to keep your family safe. The water heaters, the boiler and the roof are all important things you should be budgeting for where repairs are concerned.

Life Insurance. Whether you are planning a family, or you already have one, you need to think about life insurance for yourselves. At any time, you could find yourself in a situation where your partner will need to collect yours or vice versa after death. Using companies like Blumenshine Law Group can help you if there are problems. It’s something you should budget for, because then you don’t have to worry about how the rest of your family will manage should something happen to you.

wedding

Wedding. It doesn’t matter whether you are planning your own wedding, or you are about to be a guest of one – or several – you need a budget. If it’s your wedding, you’re going to need to consider the costs overall of your own big day. If you are a guest, you need to think about travel, accommodation, outfits, gifts – it all adds up when you’re attending weddings for a lot of friends or family members. It’s not something to miss out on.

Pet Insurance. Your furry friends that live with you aren’t always easy to live with, particularly when they get themselves into bother or find themselves sick with a cancer. You need to be able to afford the vets bills and pet insurance so that you’re not spending every penny you have on them when the time comes. Always be ready for the regular vaccinations, food and litter expenses; these happen more than once a year.

Clothes. Believe it or not, most people don’t factor in new clothes into their regular budgets. Trends change, and whether you are thinking about work clothes or your regular outfits, they will wear out over time. Even if you hate shopping for clothes, there will be times where you will have to spend out and buy new ones. You will need to have professional clothing for work, so make sure that you are budgeting for repairs – including shoe repairs when you inevitably break a heel.

car

Car Repairs. If you have a vehicle on the road, you’re going to have car insurance, which is easy to factor into your budget. That with fuel are easy things to anticipate. However, you can’t always predict when the brake pads are going to go, or the gearbox is going to start making that crunching noise. When you put repairs into your budget, you are expecting the unexpected. Set aside some of your salary every month to cover repairs, which will help when they do crop up, because then you don’t have to scramble to find the cash.

Personal Care. How often do you realise it’s been six months since your last salon appointment? Yeah, it happens to everyone. Start putting a haircut fund into your budget; it doesn’t have to be much, but it does have to cover your own personal care when you need it. This can be anything from accessories to your hair care regime and beauty regime. Remember to take care of yourself with your own earnings – it’s surprising how many don’t!

Memberships. The gym, the local social club, annual passes; these memberships are great, and you need to consider how much you pay each month or quarter and make sure that you pop the money on your budget. They quickly add up when you put them all together but check what you’re paying for. If there are any in there that you don’t want to pay for anymore, then drop them. Think about taking them off your budget and saving the money instead for other things.

fun

Fun. Lastly, the one thing you really should factor into your budget is some fun. You need to know it’s not all about bills and payments in life. Take some of your budget just for you to go a little silly – it’ll keep you alive.

To Sum Up

Budgeting is for everyone, you just have to find out what works for you and go from there. It’s the best way to keep track of your cash and stay money smart.

 

Invest Yourself to $100,000 in 7 Steps

Who doesn’t want to reach a $100,000 in their investment portfolio.  Me and Alex managed to reach 100K within 2.5 years, although it is still quite far from our goal of retiring early, for which we need $800,000.

Despite that, 100K is still a very good milestone. If you can reach that, you’ll be sure to reach whatever you desire. The hardest part is the beginning. You can start small but remember every dollar and every cent counts towards that achievable first $100,000.

There has always been economic uncertainty which have put our financial security at risk but that should not stop you from getting closer to your financial goals.

You can move forward to your goal through careful planning and budgeting. Keeping your personal financial situation problem free also helps.

We can keep your personal finance in pace with your financial goals by predicting the unpredictable like unwanted price rises or unexpected bills and keeping them under strict control. So that getting towards that first $100,000 becomes easy and the next one easier and the next one easiest.

7 Steps Towards $100,000

1. Have the right attitude

a cup

Now that you have made up your mind set to save $100,000 every small step of financial sacrifice counts. You should achieve that by avoiding excess luxury and taking that hard way home like availing public transport rather than leasing out or out rightly buying that expensive car. You have made up your mind to achieve a long term financial goal, so you should put every effort big and small towards achieving it, for that keeping the right attitude always helps.

2. Stick to your financial goals

paperwork and pc

It is always hard to give up something presently for a distant future. The temptations to break your financial goals towards that first $100,000 will be great. So, you need to stay motivated for the long run. This means you should create small achievable financial goals like weekly savings target to achieve the monthly ones and the yearly ones. That steady savings will add up to quite a good amount. You can also invest in money market deposits or treasury bills for the short term to save up towards that goal of $100,000.

3.Reduce your taxable income

It is very likely that you are employed in some way or the other and in that case you should go for such a scheme that reduces your taxable income. You can sign up for a 401(K) savings plan. Since these are tax free, you reduce your taxable income. You can also sign up for an IRA or an Individual Retirement Account which also reduces your taxable income and saves money.

4.Clear all expensive debts

budgeting

Clearing or reducing your debts is an essential step towards achieving your dream because you are on a long term savings plan. In case of credit card debt, you should try to get rid of it as soon as possible or start reducing your interest rate burden. You should also need to avoid the additional temptations of buying unessential items like a second television or a double door refrigerator.

5.Maintain a budget

You should always maintain a budget, to see where your hard earned money is going. It is also important to do so because you need to create a plan on how much to save daily, weekly, monthly and yearly towards your $100,000 savings goal. You can achieve this by focusing on meeting the essential requirements of everyday life and cutting down on those costly habits like liquor or extra shopping. This does not mean that you cannot enjoy yourself now and then but those occasions should be countable and within your means and budgets. Whatever you do you cannot over spend and not maintain a budget if you like to see that $100,000 in your bank.

6.Increase your streams of income

money

Taking up a second or third job always helps if you are young, healthy and strong. Even if you are not so, you should always look towards finding new sources of generating income. For example if you are a professional accountant by day, you can start teaching accounting to students for a couple of hours during the evening. You can also learn a new skill that will increase your likelihood of a second job. The extra you make will help you get to that goal of saving $100,000 more quickly.

7.Cut down on your expenditures

a woman with shopping bags

You need to cut down your costs and it is achievable if you are motivated and willing to take that hard road. You can always buy your groceries at a cheaper price if you buy in bulk for the whole month. You can cut down on unnecessary costs like gym membership if you can walk or cycle to work back and forth every day. You can save on home expenditure by buying recycled products. You can choose to have home cooked meals rather than visiting expensive places to eat alone or without any occasion.

You should always remember that no matter what you do to cut down expenditure, there always will be some reason in your head or some temptations to miss that weekly savings goal. In that case you should remember that week’s add up to months and months to years. So your every little sacrifice counts towards that goal of saving $100,000.

If you think you will be living a frugal life because of that, you are certainly wrong. What will happen is you will live a more healthy and prosperous life because you will be cutting down on unhealthy habits to save and you will be happy in the long run as you feel better because of your successful decisions.

This does not mean you will not face setbacks like missing a savings deadline or incurring unexpected costs but if you can jump right back and make that extra effort to save more, you will be the winner at the end of the day.

To Summarize..

Saving money is always a good habit and the sooner one gets to it is the better in the long term, although you will face new challenges and uncertain economic conditions and personal financial drawbacks. But what is most important is not to lose that motivation towards achieving that goal of $100,000 in savings.

How Much Does it Actually Cost to Own a Car?

Owning a car has become almost a necessity in the modern world. Especially when you live outside of major cities.

Cars have become such a common part of our lives, that families often have more than one per household. In a normal family, one parent may be working, another doing the school run and two cars are necessary.

Whilst the convenience of owning a car is undeniable, the true cost of owning a car might surprise you.

Costs associated with owning a car

in the salon of an audi

The initial cost of purchasing a car is high by itself. Once the car is purchased, the first thing to consider is car insurance. It’s important to get this organised as soon as you purchase the car. Accidents have been known on the way out of the car dealership.

Then there is the cost of taxing your car. This needs to be done quickly too, which means spending a lot of money in a short span of time. Obviously, you need to have a licence, it may sound obvious, but it has to be paid for.

So, you’ve got the car, it’s taxed and insured. Now you need to run it. Petrol or diesel has increased over the last decades, but it’s an essential cost of running a car. The car then needs to be serviced regularly and washed, and all this can add up. Cars get burst tyres and broken windscreen wipers.

All these costs add up and you will need to have your car in a roadworthy condition to stay safe and to ensure you can get an MOT certificate. If you leave problems to escalate, they can end up costing much more in the long-term than if you had fixed them sooner.

If you have multiple cars in your household these costs can escalate. A larger car will be more expensive to run, as in general they consume more fuel. Different brands of cars can be more expensive if they have powerful engines, or the parts are pricey and have to be imported.

How to minimise your expenditure

The initial outlay for a new car can be hefty. One option is to buy a second-hand car, as brand new cars depreciate in value dramatically. However, if you don’t have the capital to purchase a car outright, one option is to use personal finance.

You can take out a loan from a car financing company and pay the car off in instalments. Bear in mind, that although this is a more practical option to owning a car and having it quickly, you will end up paying far more ultimately due to interest charges. So, if you are considering personal finance, do some research and see what the best deal is.

Insurance should also be carefully researched too. Use a car insurance comparison site to find the best deal for your circumstances. If you are a high-risk driver, there are specialist sites that can accommodate those needs.

youngsters in a car

If you need insurance for a younger person who is a high risk according to many insurance firms, shop around, and consider adding them to a family insurance policy as this might reduce total costs.

Many supermarkets offer cheaper fuel, so it is worth shopping around until you find a garage that does the best deals on fuel. This can reduce costs significantly, especially if the car does a lot of mileage.

If you are in an area which is served by public transport, it is worth considering taking some of your trips using public transport. These costs can be significantly less than the cost of owning a car. In other words, if you don’t have to drive, don’t. it will save you money in the long run.

Also, when you are driving, be conscious of how much fuel you are consuming. Rapid acceleration and deceleration uses more fuel. If you can maintain a steady speed and make use of higher gears on a manual model, you can save money on fuel costs. Also, you can wash the car yourself rather than pay to have it cleaned by a valet. Get the children involved, they can earn their pocket money with a weekly car wash.

Other options

traffic

There is also the option of car share or car pool schemes. Many websites exist which put people together who are leaving and ending up in the same place. Take advantage of these schemes if you can, it helps save costs and improve the environment. This can be particularly easy if you have children who live nearby and go to the same school as your children, or if your co-workers live in your area.

If you want to be extra environmentally friendly, you can consider an electric car or a dual fuel car. There are subsidies available in some areas as an incentive to buy these cars. More and more places have recharging points, so it can be a practical way of maintaining a car, and the maintenance costs are much less. As the environment is such a major issue for many people, these cars may become more common as time goes on and there will be more charging points available.

So, there are massive costs associated with the luxury of owning a car. Add into that the cost of parking your car and it really adds up. Hopefully, there won’t be too many parking tickets or fines, but they need to be budgeted for when they arise.

old car

Cars also depreciate in value quite fast unless they are collectors’ items or high-performance cars in good condition. So, don’t bank on being able to sell your car for what you bought it for, or even close to that figure. There are guides, such as the Blue Book which can keep you up to speed with what price you can hope to get for a car of the model and age of your car.

In fact, for the year 2017, it was estimated that if you drove your car for 15,000 it would cost an American $8,469 per year to run a car. That’s over $700 a month. When you see it in black and white like that, the bus and train seem a lot more appealing.

Financial Tips for People That are Broke

This is a guest post by Mike Piper from the Oblivious Investor.  Mike packs a wealth of knowledge so I am sure you’ll enjoy his article. 

Nobody anticipates being financially broke at any point in life. Unfortunately, our financial habits might lead us into this situation without our knowledge. This can be disastrous on many levels: it could lead to serious debt problems, loss of housing, debt collections, and even filing for bankruptcy.

However, running into financial problems is not the end of life. There is room for one to do a lifestyle appraisal and financial audit regarding their expenditure, savings and above all budgeting.

This article is a run-through about the do’s and don’ts of budgeting when you’re in a bad place financially.

Do a lifestyle audit

1. Revisit your entertainment habits

musicians playing

If you are already broke then it means that you can’t continue living the way you used to. It is imperative that you let go some costly habits. Entertainment is one of those.

This may mean cutting back on habitual drinking with buddies, going out for movies, going for ball games, etc. It is utterly impossible to start a budgeting program while financially broke and continue to spend money on entertainment.

You may limit entertainment to those things that don’t cost you anything, for example watching a game with friends or family at home.

2. Cut back on all your expenses

For a successful budgeting journey, you have to get to the point of running through your expenditure habits. Does your budget reflect on things that you really need at the moment? If it doesn’t then strike out the expenditures that you can do without.

3. Seek ways of reducing your utility bills

numbers and a calculator

Monitor your utility bills and seek ways of reducing them. For instance, if you feel that you can cut back on the frequency of doing laundry, please do. If you can be switching off lights when you leave the room, please do.

4. Cut back on travel

Some people who love doing road trips do not realize how much of a toll it puts on gas expenditure. Even if you end up budgeting on travel, most road trips, for example, end up incurring a higher cost on gas than budgeted. Therefore, cut back on road trips or any form of travel you are currently involved in.

5. Pay attention your credit limit

Be honest with your credit habits. Monitor your credit balance and observe payment due dates. In a matter of fact, if you are in the habit of journaling begin to write on the side of a weekly or monthly sheet payment due dates. Improvise ways of getting alert notifications on due dates.

6. Prioritize your life goals

It is of utter importance to learn how to prioritize on life goals. Most big budget allocations are usually directed to where priorities are high. If you prioritize automobile, then most of your budgeting goes to acquiring cars that you don’t need. However, goals such as an education, or anything that might secure you a better job or job promotion should be prioritized by your budget.

7. Eat at home

dinner table with candles

It is understandable that eating outside is convenient, but at the same time it can be costly. To avoid spending more unnecessarily on restaurant food, learn to budget for groceries. Begin to cook and eat at home. It saves money in the long term.

Increase your income

1. Try to work smart not just hard

a woman at her desk

As people like to say, on’t work too hard,’ they are partly right. If you want to help your budgeting habit you work smart not just hard. For example, get a job that pays better to keep up with life’s demands. If one job can’t, then get a second job that is less tiring and leaves you room to rest. That way, you can keep up with important bills and develop a structured budgeting system. Without a stable income, it is hard to sustain a stable budget.

2. Look at your budget in light of income

When penning down a budget, look for ways that you could increase your income to cover for some aspect of the budget. It is no point trying to budget for items that leave you asking yourself, nd how I am going to pay for that?’

3. Track down paydays

Some people receive paychecks bi-weekly while others weekly. Keep track of paydays in a month to enable you to know when to take care of bills. At times when money comes in, it is tempting to spend on items that you hadn’t budgeted on.

Improve Your Credit habits

1. Avoid late fee payments

credit card

Since budgeting does go hand in hand with payment of bills, you cannot afford to make late fee payments. Late fee payments come with a late fee payment penalty. This penalty could range from $25 – $35 charges. These charges will definitely dent your budget significantly. This is because charges are a minus to your budget, they don’t add any value to your finances.

2. Make at least minimum payment per month

Add credit card minimum payment on your budget. It counts! Paying minimum balance on your credit card is better than not making any payment at all. Making that payment helps to reduce the bill each time you do. Let it be reflected on your monthly budget.

3. Make it a goal to clear your credit card bills

Whether financially broke or not, you do not anticipate to live on credit forever. There has to be a time when you will be credit-free! Rather, let your budgeting anticipate a release from credit bills. Pursue financial freedom no matter how long it will take. Eventually you will pay off your credit card bills and open a new page of your financial life.

Conclusions..

If you are going through a financial difficulty and are in low waters, realize that you can still keep a budget. A budget will help you order your life in crises so that you do not crush and sink financially.

Therefore, do a lifestyle audit and minimize on expenditures that you don’t need. Look for ways of increasing your income earnings. Watch your credit habits and project on being debt free someday. Lastly, save if you can, if not, it’s still okay. Be real to yourself!