This following article is a guest post by Michael Vincent. You can read more about him at the end of this article.
Most people, if asked about their financial goals, would instantly say they want to be rich, or to have the financial freedom of being able to buy or pay for anything their heart desires. Saving money is rarely ever on the top of anyone’s list.
Investor Warren Buffett himself strongly believes in the value of saving, despite having billions of dollars to his name. You might want to pick up a pointer or two from one of the world’s richest men…
There is a popular phrase that is poisoning our minds when it comes to how we think about money.
Are you dooming your finances to fail by using these words?
I’ll cut to the chase, the phrase is:
“I can’t afford it”
It’s usually used as an excuse and it looks like this…
What do you do when somebody comes up to you on the street and asks you for money? How do you respond?
Do you give it to them?
Do you say “sorry, I don’t have any money” (even if you really do)?
Do you hesitate to give, because you feel like giving money to someone on the street, whether they are panhandling, begging or homeless, could be enabling their “habits” and not actually helping them?
Let’s talk about the last one: enabling their bad habits…
When you think about being responsible with your money, a budget may be one of your first thoughts. In my Beginner Series, I tell you, point-blank, that you need a budget.
Can you really live without a budget? The title of this article makes it seem like I was misguiding you when I said that you need a budget, doesn’t it?
The wealthy and the not-so-wealthy obviously have different habits. People come into their wealth different ways, but their habits are similar.
You may already have some of these habits. You could already be using some of them.
It’s also important to note that these are habits you should develop, which indicates that you may already have them, you just need to continue to develop them even more.
So, here are 3 of the habits that you need to take control of your finances…
Technology can be an important part of our lives. After all, this is the information age. It’s important to not go broke when trying to keep up with technology, but it’s also easy to spend a fortune if you’re not careful.
Here are 3 tips to keep you up to date with technology, while keeping your finances in check…
First off, just hold on a second!
These are some little-known and some often forgotten ways to get cheap books and even free books. Reading is one of the most productive ways to pass the time and as they say:
Leaders are readers
Read on for 4 ways to get cheap books and free books!
But wait! Your Book May Already Be Free!
Before you buy a book, make sure it is not already free online. Many books that are in the public domain are available online for free…
So often, in talking to couples who have been married for over 10 years, I hear them mention that some of the funnest dates and the best times spent together were in the early years. Usually in the early years of your marriage, you are trying to make ends meet and learning to live together. So generally you are used to frugal living.
It’s not a secret that most young couples are usually living (or trying to live) a frugal life, but sometimes these years are taken for granted. Going on cheap dates and hitting up the dollar theater is actually a lot of fun. Sometimes getting out of debt can be just as fun!
If you are trying to pay off debt, then you should be trying to cut costs and pay as much towards your debt as possible. Temporary frugal living not only helps you get out of debt, but it can be a blast!
These are great quick date ideas for maximizing fun and frugality. Some are even free! Usually the more cost-effective a date is, the more quality time you spend together. Expensive dates tend to have distractions and attractions that take time away from you and your mate and focus more on the things you are paying for.
Is it really worth it? Sometimes, but often it’s not.
The dates below are great ways to save money and spend time together. Some of them involve using things you already have, like fuel in your car, food in the cabinets or other things at home, but the point is that you should be able to do these dates without coming more than $10 out-of-pocket…
Setting realistic financial goals is what separates the successful from the unsuccessful. Goals are good for every area of life, but setting financial goals specifically is important. The process of setting goals is just as important as having them, so let’s look at what it takes to set realistic and effective financial goals.
Determine Your Goals
Just like with any goal, a realistic financial goal needs to be specific, attainable and written. It will only hurt you to set a goal for an amount or a time period that isn’t realistic. It is very important that you write a specific goal, including all of the numbers involved.
All goals should be written.
You’ve probably heard the popular statistic: only 3% of people write their goals down and that says something about the small amount of people that stick with goals and achieve them. Putting goals in writing holds you accountable to the goal.
Car payments are a beautiful thing, aren’t they?
Of course they are…when you are the one receiving them.
When it comes to car payments, you have 2 options.
You can take out a loan, put yourself in debt and pay interest on your monthly payment to a financial institution or you can opt for the better option…
IRAs are great for retirement accounts, but that’s that all!
There are many little-known uses for an IRA to shelter money from taxes.
Normally when you pull money out before retirement, you are penalized with an additional 10% tax, but here are some ways to avoid that extra fee…
The envelope budget system is an easy budget for people who want/need to physically see where there money is going.
It’s a very simple process; in fact, all you need to get started is a few envelopes.
You will use a different envelope for each category in your budget. When you receive income, you simply put the correct amount in each envelope for that particular category.
It’s a cash system…
Yes, this is an actual budget that you can create for yourself in less than 5 minutes. An actual 5 minute budget.
It begins, as every budget begins, by writing down your income for 1 month, then write down your expenses for 1 month.
Budgets don’t have to be boring, and this one is so quick, it doesn’t have time to get boring.
You can track your expense for a month to get an idea, or just estimate for this budget.
If you are in the group of people who spend more than their income, which many people are, you will have to eliminate the least important things, until your spending is equal to or less than your income.
Now decide what is important to you…