3 Ways Sharing Economy Can Help You Save Big

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Sharing resources among friends, family or neighbors has been a common practice for centuries. Whether you need a cup of sugar or a ride to the airport, most of us have become accustomed to tapping into our networks for a little help. But now, with the rise of what is known as the “sharing economy,” sharing resources isn’t just something we do with our personal network, it’s an actual business model.

This new type of consumption has various benefits for all involved – those running the businesses are able to churn a profit, those sharing their goods or services can earn an income, and consumers are able to save on things they are likely paying for anyways.

Whether you’re looking for a place to stay on vacation, or you need a ride to get from point A to point B, there are plenty of ways to take advantage of the sharing economy. Here are just a few.

Hotels Are Played Out And Vacation Rentals Are In

One of the most substantial costs of taking a vacation, aside from the expense to get to the destination, are the accommodations. Hotels are anything but cheap, and they usually offer no more than a bed and a bathroom.

Sites like Airbnb, Home Away and VRBO have tackled this problem and come up with a solution that’s far more wallet-friendly – room, apartment, or home rentals available anywhere in the world.

When I visited France last year, I rented a two-bedroom apartment with a loft, two bathrooms, a washer and dryer, and a full kitchen in the heart of Montpellier for $200 per night. Since I was traveling with three friends, this equated to $50 per night, per person. Hotel rooms in the same area were at least $150 per night and would only accommodate two people.

With more options and more amenities, this is one aspect of the sharing economy that can completely transform your next vacation.

Vehicles On Demand

In the realm of transportation, it’s undeniable that the sharing economy brought several new options to the table. Instead of hopping in your own car or calling a cab, you can now have a Lyft or Uber driver pick you up in their own vehicle, or you can use a car-sharing service that will allow you to take a vehicle to your destination and only pay for the time used.

Cabs, with fee structures based primarily on use, mileage, and time, are fairly rigid in their pricing. Lyft and Uber have varying prices based on supply and demand which often works in favor of the passenger (unless, of course, you’re going on a long trek in the middle of an epic snowstorm). In addition, with user-friendly apps that allow you to track the location of your driver, receive a fair estimate, and rate your driver once the ride is complete, you, the consumer, can be in charge of your entire experience.

If you’d rather drive yourself to your destination, services like Car2Go and Zipcar will allow you to use a vehicle (you’ve likely seen several in metro areas), drive to your destination, and either park it for someone else to take when needed, or for you to return to later. Either way, you are charged for the time in use – not in day-long increments like car rentals.

With more options, transportation pricing has become competitive – something that generally always bodes well for the consumer.

Try Joining a Community Supported Agriculture for Fresh Produce

If you’ve ever longed for farm fresh produce that doesn’t sit for days under the misters at the grocery store, the sharing economy has a solution for you – joining a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture).

CSA essentially allows you to pre-purchase a share of something a local farmer is producing, and receive a portion of that share on a weekly basis for a pre-determined number of weeks. You can receive a wide variety of items this way: vegetables, fruit, eggs, meat; and some CSAs will even deliver them directly to your door.

The pricing varies, but some will allow you to receive items in exchange for your help in harvesting the crops or completing other volunteer work. Often times, the amount of food received on a weekly basis is significantly cheaper than the same items purchased directly from the grocery store. No middle-man needed here.

Usually, the items you receive are based on the crops produced, so if you’re willing to broaden your tastes and get creative with your cooking, this is the perfect option for you.

Are there other aspects of the sharing economy that have helped you save money?


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3 Money Tasks To Get Your New Year Started Right

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Every New Year, there’s an overabundance of hope that the turning of the calendar will create a significant divide between the old and the new. We like to believe this year will be markedly better than the last, but often times the how of this belief is vague, to say the least.

Come the first of January, we’ll suddenly feel the pressure of all these vague goals: eating healthier, spending less, earning more – the list goes on and on.

That’s a lot of pressure, right?

Instead of strictly looking at your end goal and being seriously overwhelmed as a result, why not start the New Year with specific tasks to get the ball rolling?

If you want your finances to look better January 1st than they have in a while, start with these tasks.

#1: Perform A Spending Audit

This might seem like a monumental task if you haven’t already been tracking your spending for the 2018 calendar year, but it’s oh so necessary if you want to really understand where the leaks are and how to repair them for good.

If looking back over the entire year seems way too cumbersome, try looking at the last three months, or a time frame long enough to understand what your fixed and variable expenses are, as well as where your discretionary income is going.

While there are plenty of apps to help with the process of tracking your spending, don’t discount the added mental benefit of going the old school route and tracking/categorizing your spending manually. According to a reporter for The New York Times, taking this approach allowed him to really reflect on his spending habits and how they were serving him.

“Last week, Psychological Science published a study about how well students recall a lecture if they type the notes or write them longhand.The writers could better remember the message because they’d actually processed what it meant.

I think something similar happens when we try to automate our budgeting process…The result is a technically correct reflection of how our spending compares with our budget, but we miss the chance to process what the numbers mean.”

#2: Revamp Your Budget.

What good is doing all that initial legwork if you aren’t actually going to put your findings to good use?

After you’ve clearly outlined where your spending panned out for the year (or whatever time frame you chose), it’s time to figure out where you are leaking funds unnecessarily and how you can rework your 2019 budget to better fit your intended lifestyle, income, and short and long-term financial goals.

Here are a few things to consider:

1) Where did the “blind” spending occur and does this spending fit with your priorities?
If you spent an exorbitant amount on eating out this year but your stated priority was saving for a vacation, you might need to find specific ways to cut back on the former in order to keep your spending in line with your goals.

2) Are you saving consistently?
Saving consistently for short and long term goals is key if you want to find yourself in a better financial situation in the next 12 months and beyond. If you don’t have a consistent savings habit established, where can you cut in order to apply those funds towards your goals?

3) What future expenses can you plan for now?
Financial hiccups occur when future expenses aren’t planned for in advance. Think about your holiday spending, for instance. If this leaves you with a large credit card bill you can’t pay off immediately, add it into your budget now.

#3: Set Specific Financial Goals.

Kick those vague goals to the curb this year. It’s time to get specific with each of the milestones you’re working towards both in the immediate future and in the long-term.

If you haven’t already established goals for yourself, start with 1-2 short term (e.g. paying off one credit card balance in full and saving enough to visit family out of state) and 1-2 long-term (retiring in 15 years, being debt-free in the next five years).

These are all great goals on their own, but they are just the beginning. A well mapped out goal should read more like this:

Pay off entire $10,000 balance on “X” credit card by November 2019. Payments of X amount will be paid monthly in order to reach the goal.

This goal sets a target achievement date and works back from there in order to determine the monthly payment amount. This would also take into consideration the interest rate on the card and the weight the existing budget can bear in terms of increased payment amounts.

With these action-oriented tasks, making 2019 look financially rosier than 2018 will seem like a real possibility instead of just a shot in the dark.

Are you ready to get started?


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What Is The Best Form Of Financial Investment?

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Most people don’t give importance to investing because they consider they need a lot of money.  Although it is human nature to save for the rainy days, yet most people turn as a blind eye when it comes to investment. However, an individual should plan and set some finances aside to meet the financial needs during emergencies.

Importance Of Investment

Future is uncertain, so individuals should be financially prepared to handle the crisis at any point of their lifetime.  But what is exactly an investment?

Investment can be defined in the economic sense. It is a purchase of goods that are not consumed today instead it is secured to be used for future needs. If you need to save $500,000 dollars by the time of your retirement, unless you make a contribution from your income and make the savings, you cannot attain the benchmark number.

If you want to make sure that your extra cash doesn’t disappear, then you need to make the right kind of investment. Planning plays a crucial part in financial investment. Many people often invest just for sake without determining the purpose. However, it is important to know the cause of your investment which makes your investment more pleasure with much ease.

In addition, you need a careful analysis of the different investment option. You must not invest in stocks or shares since your friend is investing in that. Instead, you should have a careful analysis and focused approach on strategies before making your investment. If you are not confident with your approaches or look for aid, you can seek the help of a financial planning manager, who are professionally trained to handle all the financial planning and investment needs. He can suggest you the best plans based on your income stability and your requirements. But, in the end, you must read all the documents carefully to avoid mistakes and enjoy your investments.

Different Types Of Investment That Can Aid Your Financial Needs

Below are the best low-risk investments which can yield high returns

Savings Accounts

It is more beneficial to keep your money in a savings account than checking because savings accounts yield interest. Perhaps, a savings account is one of the most liquid investment, so they are best suited for individuals looking for investment besides earning a modest interest rate. Although the interest rate is not much appreciable, yet the growth rate is very safe when compared to other investment options where you have a risk of losing your money.

Certificate Of Deposit

This is much similar to a savings account, but the interest rates are much higher with this option. Perhaps a much safest way to grow your money. If the certificate of deposit is not in your radar, you should definitely consider it because of the multitude of benefits it offers.

  1. They have a low to the no-fee structure.
  2. In the volatile financial market where nothing is predictable, the CD has fixed rates for fixed terms.
  3. It is one of the safe places to park your funds that aligns with your financial goals.

Gold And Precious Stones

Although the price of the gold and precious stones are volatile in short time, yet it has maintained its value for a long time. Gold is better verge against a crisis rather against inflation. In fact, it has the potential to create a demand to drive the price when it becomes scarce.

Real Estate

When you are looking for a good long-term investment, then real estate is an ideal option. It is evident that value increases with time. For example, a detached home which was priced 400,000$ in 2008 has increased to 1,000,000$ over a decade.

Fixed Deposits

Most people are unaware that fixed deposits are a highly reliable investment which has the potential to yield high returns in the long term. Most market investments are volatile; however, this is not the case with fixed deposits. It is very secure and grows with time.

Bonds

People often look for decent yields with a lower level of volatility. If this is the case, then bonds are the really good options for those individuals. Bonds are a popular form of investment, who wants to live off their investment income. Perhaps, a great vehicle, when you don’t want to put your money at risk.

Stocks

It is one the best tool for savvy investors who wish to yield high returns, though there is risk associated with it. Having some basic knowledge of stocks and following the economic conditions closely can enable you to earn surplus money through stocks. US stocks have consistently earned more investment for the long term.

Bottom Line

Although your financial advisor can provide potential information for your investment, yet you must not trust them blindly, instead take some effort to read the terms and conditions before you begin with your investment. Put your finances only in the investment that is guaranteed to make you money. In addition, diversifying your investment in various forms that are mentioned above can protect your money from inherent volatility.


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Ways To Achieve Personal Financial Management

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Some people do New Year Resolutions to make more investments and savings, but they would not be so efficient to stick on to those goals or consider revisiting the goals. While some people do not set goals at all. However, when it comes to money management, you cannot attain financial freedom unless you have set financial goals which would certainly guide you to reach the benchmark.

Ways To Effectively Manage Your Finances

Financial freedom is something that most people want to achieve in the future. In order to attain that, they set financial goals and strive hard to stick to that goal irrespective of the tough financial conditions. Perhaps, this is one the ideal strategy to improve good personal finance.

Everyone should have a financial goal to provide financial security throughout your lifetime. Your financial goals can either be short-term, mid-term or long-term goals like building your dream home or starting your own investment firm, hard-core investments for emergencies and many more. Reaching a point of financial security will probably take time, effort and obviously requires few sacrifices. Apparently, the benefits reaped from it are pretty awesome. However, when you make it as a practice, the process becomes easier, and you will not find it hard, perhaps you will start enjoying the habit, and it will be no longer a sacrifice.

What Is Financial Security And How They Can Achieve Through Effective Financial Management?

Financial security is an individuals or a family’s financial outlook with regard to savings, planning, and investments.  Planning for a financially secure future is rather important because, without financial goals, the road to financial security would be a rocky one. For example, an individual should decide that he/she could have earned 500,000 at the time of his retirement instead he/she should say that they should have enough money when they retire. Unless you have a focused goal, you cannot march towards it.

Here Are A Few Ways To Build A Strong Financial Foundation

Whatever be your goals, you must start with a strong and sturdy financial foundation. Let us see what you need to build?

Get In Control Of Everyday Finances –

Credit cards are most convenient to make transactions and to make large purchases. However, when you owe more debt than you can afford, it will eventually turn into a financial burden. When debts start to pile, your financial condition will be in turmoil. So, make certain that you are staying within the limit of your expenses

Build Emergency Funds –

One of the most important parts of financial security is to build emergencies stocks. No one can foresee the future; accidents are unavoidable so you should be prepared for the unexpected.

Apparently getting finances in order is not an impossible aspect. Everyone, who want to control their finances went through this, and this would probably bring your financial life in order. Here are a few things that you can start implementing now, so you can achieve your financial goals in the future

Framing A Budget –

You cannot withstand the rainy weathers unless you start preparing for the rainy season. Similarly, when it comes to household expenses, you should have an effective budget to determine how the money is spent. Perhaps, this creates a spending plan for your income. Budgeting helps us see with clarity and full transparency what your financial condition is? In fact, it helps you to manage the money better.

Tracking Your Expenses –

A shocking truth, yet the unfortunate reality is, most people don’t know the number of expenses incurred every month. It is not a complicated deal, and you can very well keep track of the expenses with the bills. Expenses spent on standard expenses like electricity, water, gas, phone bills, wifi, cable, groceries, and expense spent on miscellaneous like the hotel, shopping, parties, gifts, etc., Tracking all the expenses will give you a complete picture of how much expenses are happening around you.

Understanding Your Income –

Based on your expenses, you can determine whether it fits within your income or you are cross-passing the income limit. When your income is more than the expenses, then you will have room to make investments, otherwise when your expenses are more than your income, then it is an ideal time to manage your expenses.

Refinancing –

No one like debts, perhaps, it is one of the dreaded words in the English dictionary. Business studies reveal that the majority of Americans are bounded by debts majorly with credit cards and other types of loans. The foremost thing is to get control over the debts and try to close it off as early as possible

Strip Unnecessary Expenses –

Pay off debts can be made possible only if you can cut down the unnecessary expenses which are generally termed as wants. Most people create a need to buy a product. You need to take preventive measure to keep your finances under control so you can make more contributions towards investment.

Bottom Line

Adopting small finance habits would definitely help you to create a difference in the future.  Habits and practice shape the person to be more organized with their finances.


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3 Ways To Use Credit Cards Without Racking Up Debt

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Credit card debt can be devastating and hold you back from reaching many of your financial goals. However, that doesn’t mean that credit cards themselves are evil. In many cases, credit cards can be a part of your lifestyle, allowing you to take advantage of free travel and other perks. I regularly fly for free or enjoy free nights in a hotel because of my credit card approach.

With the right attitude and planning, it’s possible to use credit cards successfully – without racking up debt and paying thousands of dollars in interest charges.

Here are 3 keys to using credit cards without falling into the debt trap:

1. Stop Digging The Debt Hole

Before you start using credit cards as part of your financial plan, make sure that you are no longer digging the debt hole
. The first step is to get your spending under control so that you aren’t living beyond your means. Realize that debt is a symptom of the problem. Get rid of your credit card debt, make sure you aren’t building any more of it. Go at least six months without borrowing to make ends meet.

This doesn’t mean that you have to have your student loans completely paid off, or your mortgage done with early. However, you shouldn’t have any credit card debt or payday loan debt hanging over you when you start, and you should be in a place where you don’t need debt to meet your obligations each month.

2. Have A Plan For Your Spending


Next, make sure you have a plan for your spending. It even makes sense to have a specific plan for the credit cards you use (and the rewards you are trying to focus on).

I have three main credit cards that I use on a regular basis.

Business card: Even though I’m a freelancer, I still have business expenses. I use my business card to earn cash back when I buy things for my business or go on trips for business. This helps me keep my business finances separate from my personal finances, and I get cash back.SkyMiles card: This is the card I use for everyday purchases and costs. I even pay rent automatically using this card, as well as pay my utilities, Internet and other costs.

It’s also the card I use for groceries and gas. I earn miles quickly, and my son and I usually fly free when we travel. Upromise card: Finally, this is the card that I use for online purchases. It is the card saved at Amazon and other online retailers. When I order things online, the cash back rewards are automatically deposited into my son’s 529. Even though I contribute regularly each month, the credit card earnings add a nice bump and the account as a whole benefit from the compound interest.

Each card has a purpose, and my spending is done with my priorities in mind. While I could probably get a little more benefit out of putting everything but my business – including the online purchases – on the same card, I do like the idea of having these things split so that if my saved online card is compromised, it won’t affect my other card, and vice versa.

3. Pay Off The Card Each Month

The reason planning is so important is due to the fact that you need to be able to pay off your credit cards each month. Each of my cards has a plan and a purpose, and they fit within my overall financial plan. I don’t make extra purchases “just for the rewards” or justify over-spending with the rewards.

In order for this plan to work, you have to pay off your credit cards each month in order to avoid interest charges. My income (what doesn’t go toward retirement contributions and other long-term goals) sits in a money market account, earning interest for the month. When it’s time to pay the bill, I can do so and avoid interest.

If you don’t track your spending, or don’t have a plan for your money so that you live within your means, this won’t work, and you should probably rethink using credit cards.


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How To Select The Best Credit Card?

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Credit cards are tempting, however getting close to it, you can probably get burnt. Nevertheless, without a credit card, it is difficult to build or establish credit with which you can make large purchases. If you choose to live without a credit card and a credit score, you have to jump potentially through a number of hoops. Perhaps, choosing the right credit card can better organize your spendings and credit situation.

Picking The Best Credit Card

Like any other American, you would have probably bombarded with a multitude of credit card offers from a number of banks and retailers. Although there is a number of options and offers, you would finally end up with a credit card that is issued from your home bank. Nevertheless, choosing the right credit card is a combination of art and science.  Shopping the right credit card will save you hundreds and thousands of dollars to your credit wallet in terms of interest and surcharges.

While choosing a credit card, you should know for which reasons you would require a credit card. Your purposes can vary from buying things online or paying your bills or making bigger purchases. Apparently, you should also determine whether you would be able to make the repayment every month for your purchases. Exceeding your limit will put you in hassle, and you would be spiraling in debts. However, when you have the potential to repay your bills in full or stick on to regular payments, you can even take advantage of the interest-free period.

To make a well-informed decision, this article would help you find the best credit card for you with some useful tips

Annual Percentage Rate

The most important loan term is your interest rate stated as a yearly rate, which is the rate, you will be charged for borrowing the money.  Individuals, who are applying the credit card for the very first time will not consider this factor.

So, they usually tend to pay high interest rates.  If you are applying the credit card for the first time, you probably might carry a balance to the following months, so the most important aspect that has to be kept in consideration is the interest rate.  Even carrying a few months of balance will cost you hundreds in interest charges, so lower the interest rate greater would be your credit card experience.

Check Your Credit Scores

Check your credit scores and determine the credit card offers.  A credit score is a three-digit number, typically between 300 and 900 that relates to how likely you are to repay debts. Credit scores are very sensitive to credit report inquiries, so you should avoid applying for random credit cards.

There are online tools that will help you to provide a list of credit cards based on your credit scores.  If you are not aware of your credit score, you can get an estimate of what is your score using the credit score calculator, which will require several pieces of information like payment history, the amount owed, length of history, new credits, types of credit and few others.

Determine Your Minimum Payments

Most credit cards only require you to make a minimum payment every month which is basically 20 – 25 $ based on the interest of your credit card. This payment is required to avoid late payments and damages to the payment history.  There are few methods of calculating the minimum payment

  1. Percentage method – Some lenders calculate the minimum payment as a percentage of the balance. For example, your minimum payment is 3 percent, and you owe 1500 dollars then your minimum payment is calculated as 1500 * 3/100 = 45 $
  2. Percentage and applicable interest + finance charges- The credit card issuer will also take a percentage of what you owe along with applicable interest and finance fees at the end of every billing cycle. For example, when your minimum payment is 2% for 1500$ you owe. If the applicable interest is 10% and there are no fees involved, then your minimum payment is calculated as (1500 *0 .02) + (1500*0.1) = 45$

Choose The Credit Card Which Will Serve Your Purpose

There are plenty of credit cards out there, but the best credit should be the one which would satisfy your needs. For instance, if you are a frequent traveler, you should certainly go for the travel rewards credit card which can save some percentage on interest for every spending. Low-income families, who have potential chances of carrying forwarding their balance should look for low-interest credit cards to avoid paying high interest rates for the balance amounts. However, when you are looking to improve your creditworthiness, you can go for secured credit cards that are backed by collateral. This would probably add more value to your credit scores.

Closing Thoughts

In addition to these aspects, look for the nuts and bolts to avoid getting trapped to the faulty providers who can ditch you in bankruptcy. Also, don’t forget about the additional benefits and bonuses to have a great experience with credit cards.


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Know Everything Related To Predatory Lending

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When you need credit, choosing the right personal lender is important. He has the potential either to make you or break you. The personal lender helps you to get out of the debt or get dragged you in debt and immerse you in bankruptcy.

What Is A Predatory Lender?

Predatory lenders are unethical lending practices carried out by the lender to entice, induce and assist the borrower in taking a loan that is accompanied by high fees, a high interest rate that the borrower cannot afford.

There are many times in life when you need a loan like purchasing a car, a dream home, emergency requirements, business expansion, educational purpose and many more.  You might also require at times to consolidate debts or pay off long term debts. During such situations, you will be in need a lender through whom you can borrow the desired finance.

Although there is a number of good lenders who genuinely help the borrowers to avail the loans at the best interest rate, they are equally accompanied by predatory lenders, who take advantage of the consumers and impose unfair or abusive loan terms. These lending practices are disadvantageous to the borrowers and most frequently occur with the low-income families and minority borrowers.

Predatory lenders often aim at the creditor’s profits when they are not able to make the payment. They use false advertising and foul sales tactics to make the borrower take loans from them. However, there are few signs from which you can make out these foul plays and stay away from this predatory lending.

Following The Signs Of Predatory Lending

Before signing any loan, do extensive conduct research online and feedbacks from your friends and relatives about the different types of loans. Make a comparative analysis against the interest rates to determine whether the lenders have any complaints against them. Stay away from a loan which requires

No Credit Check

For bank consumers, having a good credit history is important to improve the chances of getting a loan. Perhaps, the credit score is the most vital component to make yourself eligible for the loan. However, with predatory lending, it might be easier to get eligibility for the loan without a good credit history. Apparently, there are higher risks of paying huge interest. Paying higher rents would obviously put you in more financial burden making things even worse. So beware of this sign.

Alarming Interest Rates

One of the biggest signs of predatory lending is the alarming three-digit interest rates. For instance, the average APR rates of payday loans and car title loans are generally 35-37 percentage. Nevertheless, you cannot find these rates with the predator’s lenders instead their APR usually range from 280 to 300%. So, when you are borrowing a loan, ensure that you properly read all the terms and conditions and understand how the loan terms and interest rates are structured because agreement terms predominantly highlight the interest rates.

Needs Cautions When Loan Payment Requires ACH

Automated Clearing House or ACH are electronic payments that send payments directly from the checking account. Although it is easier for making your transactions yet there are plenty of risks behind it. You will not know how much you are paying. In many instances, you would be paying more than you should, and this could eventually drain your account, which ultimately results in missing other payments and rack up the penalties. It also leads to overdrawing your account.

Loan Flipping

People generally go for refinancing to consolidate debts. However, the predatory lenders make use of this opportunity and try to ditch you with the lending practice called loan flipping.

While the transaction can add a few thousand dollars to the homeowner’s account, however, the most amount is eaten by high-interest fees and prepayment penalties. Well-known investors and authentic money lenders are the best sources of flipping loans.

In fact, sometimes flipping turns out to be a criminal activity because some people illegally flip the property at the artificial inflation rate. So, when you find things fishy, it is wise to stay out of it.

How To Avoid Predatory Lending?

When it comes to purchasing an asset or property, predatory lending is something you should try to stay away from.  You must try doing these things

  • Make sufficient research and analysis before you approach a lender
  • When front fees are not convincing, don’t hesitate to question it.
  • Always go for a licensed lender
  • Establish your eligibility to get qualified for the loan
  • Do not sign on documents containing blank spaces
  • Do not let yourself rushed for the loan processes
  • Stay away from loans offered through phone, mail, and solicitations.
  • Do not allow anyone to convince you for the loan amount.

Bottom Line

Many states have laws preventing high-interest loans. But still, there are many greedy lenders who take advantage of the minority communities and make them spiral in debts. So, it is important to watch the signs of predatory lending mentioned above and stand firm to all the loan processes without getting pressurized or convinced by someone for a loan.


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Ways of Making the Best Retirement Savings

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People who don’t understand the essence of savings often turns a blind eye towards retirement savings. Most people are unprepared for retirement. A shocking report says that 30% of North Americans have no retirement savings and purely depend on the welfare system or another service to make up their living after retirement.

Importance Of Retirement Savings

Savings for retirement is essential to ensure that your golden years are comfortable and fruitful.  Although there are government aid services that provide Pension plan to the senior citizens, apparently this will not provide the comfortable life you are looking for. Even though you haven’t started the savings yet, it’s never too late to start your retirement savings.  By investing your money for the savings today can reap more benefit for the future. It is not necessary that you need to make a big contribution to retirement savings. A small percentage of your income can make bigger contributions.

There are two components of retirement planning

Personal Planning

Although both are essential components, yet personal planning is more important because it is the determining factor which decides, what kind of lifestyle you wish to live in your future. Whether you want to be taken care of the old age homes or live independent and spend your life the way you want.

Financial Planning

This determines the source of income and expenses based on your budget. You can really enjoy your retirement life when you have structured your income in the early part of your life.

People are often confused when to start their retirement savings?  Apparently, the answer is simple and straight forward. It is very crucial to start your retirement savings as early as possible. The early you start, the more money you can contribute.

With numerous financial responsibilities to juggle and a big chunk of paycheck going towards your monthly expenses, how to save for retirement is a growing concern for many Americans. Most people are wondering and more scared, how they are going to spend their retirement years when they are no longer earning.  However, there are ways to do it!

Easiest Ways To Make Your Retirement Savings

Increase Your Retirement Contribution Size Whenever You Get A Hike

This is one the easiest and ideal way of increasing the retirement savings amount.  For example, if you get a hike of 5% on your basic salary, then it is not essential that you need to contribute all the 5% towards the retirement savings; instead, you can make 2-3% towards retirement contribution.  Although the concept of saving more is difficult and unpleasing, however, the benefits you enjoy out of your savings are abundant.  This approach will definitely guarantee you to save more to lead the happiest retirement life.

Pay Yourself First

Most people often think that the percentage of contribution towards retirement savings should be done after you are met with the other expenses and your family budget. However, it should be on the contrary!

Paying yourself means that you need to allocate funds for the retirement savings first before you think about the other expenses. Though it is a small number, say, for example, you are contributing 50$ per month, and you are doing for a period of 30 years. This will account to around 40,000 dollars by the time of your retirement. In addition, you will have the interest rate added, so your final savings could be around 85,000$, which is really good money to make your retirement life more cherishable.

Set Up An Automated Budget For Your Retirement Savings

Automating the deposits towards retirement savings is one of the simplest and easiest ways to do it efficiently. Once you have determined, how much you can contribute to your retirement savings, you can set automated payment so you will not skip making the contribution. One of the major advantages of automated savings is, the amount you have budgeted for the 401K will directly get deposited towards the account, so you will not have the chance of spending the money out of impulse buying or unnecessary expenses.

Take Advantage Of The Catch-Up Contributions If You Are Already Through Your Retirement Age

Once you turn age 50, you become eligible to make additional catch up contributions to an amount of 6,000 $ towards your retirement plans. By doing so, you can shield up to 24,000 from tax exemptions. Retirement savings have a huge impact on tax savings. This program perhaps provides people with an opportunity to make up for their past savings sin. Benefits are profound with catch up contributions

  • You will have more money for retirement
  • Considerable tax savings
  • Savings are done automatically

Bottom Line

Knowing how much you will need and how much you will spend will not only create a process of savings, rather paves the way for investment.  Unless you set benchmarks, you cannot pursue your retirement goals. So, use all these strategies right now and make your retirement years more peaceful and happy.


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