Yes it is possible to be debt-free. Let us help you see the light at the end of the tunnel. Also be sure to check out our complete guide to getting out of debt.
It’s no secret that most people don’t know how to handle money.
Personal finance is one of the primary categories of blogs on the internet today.
That’s because it’s needed. It’s highly needed. And most people don’t even know where to start.
People don’t understand things like the stock market, mutual funds, index funds or compound interest in general. The average person doesn’t keep a budget, and they overspend on a daily basis.
I know you don’t do that, but you may still be wondering why personal finance isn’t taught in schools, and why most people don’t have a clue when it comes to money.
Here’s some insight…
Here is my recent interview with Life Hacks magazine.
Compound interest. The 8th wonder of the world.
Do you know the power of compound interest in its entirety?
It’s the greatest thing in the world…when it’s working for you.
When it’s working against you, it can be one of the most devastating things in the world. A catastrophe, really.
I’m just going to take a minute or two to show you the amazing power of compound interest. Then I’ll let you decide if you would rather it work for you or against you.
Here it is. Compound interest. The good and the bad…
As a military member myself, I’ll be the first to say that most active duty service members have no idea what they’re doing when it comes to their finances.
It’s true that most people in general don’t have a clue, but it almost seems worse in the military.
That being said, when I do meet someone in the military who shares my love of finances, it’s an automatic friendship.
Enter my friend Eric. A retired Army Lieutenant Colonel and now a financial advisor for First Command.
With 20+ years in the service, Eric knows a thing or two about the military and he also knows about money. That’s a rare combination, which is what makes him so interesting.
Here’s what a retired Colonel taught me about money…
I remember when I didn’t have control of our family’s money. I remember it well…unfortunately. We were $24,000 in consumer debt. We had no emergency fund, no investments and no savings whatsoever. I had used most of my wife’s savings to buy a new drum set (because that’s what responsible husbands do, right?).
My wife had been through Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace course and honestly, she knew quite a bit more than I knew about money, especially managing it (well, and everything else related to money). She gave her input, but why would I listen? I was in my early 20s and I already had everything figured out. I didn’t need her input – I knew what I was doing. Yeah…
I’m not going to drown you in the tears of my past wrongdoings, but I am going to tell you why you need to take control, what happens if you don’t (from personal experience) and how to take control right now. Yes, today is the day that you will take control of your finances. Today is the day that you will change the course of your financial life. Sounds cheesy, right? Well sometimes the truth comes with a little cheese sprinkled on top, but seriously, you can change your financial future if you start today. Let’s do this…
I’ve been there. Over $20,000 in consumer debt with interest rates higher than Cheech and Chong combined.
I remember seeing the offers pouring in to lower my interest rates. This one stuck out:
“0% interest rates on balance transfers for up to 15 months!”
It was a Chase Slate card. 15 months was the longest zero interest offer I could find for a balance transfer at the time. I calculated how much we needed to pay each month to pay it off in 15 months. We applied. We were approved.
It worked for us. We went from paying interest rates of 12%, 15% and even 17% to paying no interest whatsoever. But what would have happened if we would have went over the 15 month mark? Around 23% interest would have happened.
We had to ask ourselves if we were certain we could pay off the account in time, no matter how many unexpected costs popped up, but that’s not all we had to ask. Here are four questions to ask if you’re considering a balance transfer. Two to ask the company and two to ask yourself…
Student loan forgiveness has been a hot headline over the last year. The ever increasing mass of student loan debt continues to weigh on the hearts and minds of our college graduates. Today, 7 in 10 college seniors are graduating with student loan debt! While student loans are a necessary tool for some students, they should be used carefully by borrowers.
You may have seen the late night television ads preaching the benefits of student loan forgiveness. Despite what these television ads say, not everyone is eligible for student loan forgiveness. These ads are often being run by unethical telemarketers looking to take advantage of uneducated student loan borrowers. To qualify for student loan forgiveness you must meet certain eligibility requirements for federal programs. Don’t find yourself victim to a student loan forgiveness scams.
The following U.S. Department of Education programs can actually forgive your student loan debt:
Runaway debt and credit debt is the new normal. It doesn’t necessarily occur because you spend beyond your means, but can happen as a result of your FICO score dropping whenever you apply for a lease on an apartment, a credit card account, or a car loan. The company that reviews your application will pay a fee to check your credit and these checks are not harmless, but can actually create a dent in your credit score.
Without realizing it, you may end up paying higher interest for everything because of your lower FICO score. This may actually force you to run out of money. At this point, it’s easy to fall into some heavy debt as you scramble for survival.
So, it’s a negative cycle: inquiries on your credit card may lower your FICO scores; these then results in paying more for everything because of higher interest rates. This situation, in turn, may then lead to runaway debt.
In order to arrest this negative spiral, you first have to understand how the credit scoring system works…