While the financial struggle is an everlasting battle for all of us, some seem to cope better than the others. We all have our own secret weapons in this struggle to make ends meet. And yet, as surprising as it sounds, one of the leading causes of insolvency is medical debt. For example, in Australia, millions of people lack good health insurance cover and for this reason, many of them usually end up settling huge medical bills directly from their pockets. Even though the cost of premiums from different health insurance plans is normally expensive, having at least one plan covering you and your loved ones is very important.
No Comments Mich on Jun 17th 2013
Credit card interest.
All of these are fees that no one should pay. They result from being careless, disorganized, impulsive or distracted.
These fees you should definitely never pay and if you do, well there’s a name for those fees. Dave Ramsey coined the term, “stupid tax,” just for those types of fees. Because you may have acted less than intelligently. We’ve all paid the stupid tax once or twice, the goal is, of course, to never pay them again.
Think before you act.
Plan ahead and keep great records.
Do those 3 things and you’ll never pay another stupid tax again. But what about other fees? What about fees that aren’t a result of anything you did? They just seem to exist for the sole purpose of earning the company more money. Here are 5 that you should never, ever pay. Ever.
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19 Comments Jessica Streit on May 27th 2013
Shopping for delicious food is extremely easy given the wide array of choices available to us. Today’s grocery stores are chocked full of tasty treats, snacks, and meals. However, selecting unhealthy options is far too easy, even when we think we are buying health foods. Our full schedules and rushed lives makes it difficult to eat healthy especially when so many pre-packaged, ready-to-be-eaten meals are offered in the stores. Providing healthy food choices for your children and family takes some extra work. Reading labels, selecting only the healthiest of foods to have in your home and avoiding dinning out are some steps you can take, read on to learn even more.
Fresh Fruits and Vegetable Choices
At about 6 months old, babies start enjoying solid foods like fruit or vegetable purées. Introducing their taste buds to the natural flavor of fruits and vegetables is a great start on the road to good health. In vegetable-eating countries like in Thailand, babies are offered fresh vegetables to chew on while they deal with the pain from teething– with close supervision of course. Starting them early means, you won’t have any problems getting them to eat these natural foods as they grow up. As long as you continue to provide fresh fruits and vegetables to your child rather than sugary or salty snacks, he or she will happily snack on the fresh selections without any problems. Choose organic options for your produce as often as you can, but especially when you are consuming the skin – they contain the most pesticides (Find more information on this by searching for The Dirty Dozen.).
10 Comments Jessica Streit on May 16th 2013
With the recent recession and the uncertainty of today’s economy, many people will stick to a job they dislike or will apply for the first job that comes around, even if it is not the most interesting one. While being financially secure is important, being happy is certainly not less important. Here are a few tips to help find a job you truly love.
Know What You Want and Who You Are
While this may sound pretty obvious, it is still the starting point of your career seeking process. And be warned: It is not as easy as it seems! Knowing what you want and who you are is the quest of a lifetime. Let’s start on a smaller scale here, though: Ask yourself what your skills and interests are. A little trick: In order to spot your true skills and interests, just try and remember what you ended up doing in all your previous jobs, regardless of what they were. Did you naturally take on the lead? Did you naturally took care of all the accounting? Were you always in charge of organizing meetings and figure out logistics? If you look carefully at your life – even your life outside work – you’ll see a pattern. This should help you identify your true talents and your natural abilities.
And know that, often, people are not really honest about what they truly love to do, even with themselves. Try and go beyond the standards imposed by society and think outside the box. Read the rest of this entry »
3 Comments Guest on May 6th 2013
Driving your car until its comfortably on “E” and hoping you can get to work just one more time before you have the money to fill up.
Eating stale crackers and a 2 year old can of peas for dinner because you don’t have the money for groceries.
Do any of these situations sound like you? If you find yourself constantly waiting with bated breath for payday only to run out of money a few days later, you are bound to be feeling a great deal of stress and depression. There is hope though, you can avoid living paycheck to paycheck. Here are your best steps to avoid living paycheck to paycheck and to move forward if you are.
27 Comments Jessica Streit on Apr 22nd 2013
Are you sick of your current job? Do you want to move on to something new?
Well I’m not here to tell you to quit your job. Sorry. I’m a bit more realistic than that. I’m going to suggest a different idea. I want you to start freelancing on the side. I want you to use your spare time to increase your income and to change your life forever. I spent far too much time chasing passive income and other random strategies.
I never really took the time to actually get down to the work. I would just follow advice on starting a million dollar business through passive income. This never worked out for me. Let’s start off with an important question… Why will freelancing on the side set you free? By testing out business ideas in your spare time you’ll be able to figure out if you have a chance of branching out on your own.
I find it to be absolutely careless advice to suggest to someone that they just quit their job and “follow their passions.” Screw that. You have bills to pay and you don’t want to end up poor. You don’t want to curse some blogger dude because they told you to quit and now you’re homeless (okay, maybe that’s a bit extreme). I have far too many friends that are convinced that you have to go all in to be successful. This is false because you just have too much to lose and you can lose out on valuable time making money and working in your field.
When you freelance on the side you’ll not only get to test out your ideas with comfort, but you’ll also be able to build up your savings/pay down your debt. This is critical because if you have debt (student loans, mortgage, or consumer debt), you still have to cover your payments. You can set yourself free by working your day job and freelancing on the side until you’re debt free and in a position to quit your job. Read the rest of this entry »
24 Comments Martin on Apr 1st 2013
The following is a guest post.
Everyone knows that it is smart to have some money put aside in case the worst happens, but where should it go? And what is the difference between savings and investments?
Traditionally, savings accounts are held with banks and there are many different types of on offer, including those that require notice to access funds and those that allow withdrawals at any time.
A good way to find the right savings account is to use an comparison website where you can compare a full range of accounts instantly to find the best one to suit your requirements.
Savings accounts are very easy to set up and everyone understands how they operate. For most people, a savings account is their automatic choice when deciding to try and save some money for the future.
However, whilst they are undoubtedly a popular choice, savings accounts often do not provide sufficient returns to safeguard the value of the money.
As the rate of inflation often exceeds the amount of net interest being paid, savings accounts have sometimes been referred to as a ‘slow robbery’, as the funds so diligently saved actually drop in value as the years pass.
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2 Comments Guest on Mar 31st 2013
Jacob from Early Retirement Extreme and Mr. Money Mustache from Mr. Money Mustache have recently been talking about the “Internet retirement police”, self-appointed folk who call out bloggers for calling themselves retired, when, according to these people, their lifestyle doesn’t fit into the pre-approved notions of what they consider to be “early retirement”, or just plain ol’ “retirement” in general.
That got me thinking, because we often use the same word to mean different concepts, and “early retirement” means different things to different people. Jacob breaks down “retirement” into the following categories:
“Retired”, as in “put out to pasture”
This is when we’re just too old and tired to do anything productive, so we spend the rest of our days watching TV, playing golf, or whatever else we can muster. This is probably what the reality of “retirement” was for most people in ages past, but it seems like an old-school definition to me and not one that I personally look forward to.
Will this type of retirement still be a reality for people going forward? There are incredible advancements being made in technology and medicine right now, and I firmly believe that, barring a major world war or something of that scale, most younger people today will live to see aging “cured”, and death by senescence will become obsolete. There will still be fatal accidents, crime, and stuff of that sort, but those are different problems, and I believe that we’ll find solutions to those problems as well. There should be no reason that a young person today would find him or herself forced out into the pasture due to plain old age, and by young, I also include people in their 30s, 40s, and heck, maybe even in their 50s. Technology moves fast these days.
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24 Comments Kevin on Mar 11th 2013
In my last post about our aim for financial freedom by age 50, I quickly mentioned my transition to self-employment. It was a bit sudden in the big scheme of things.
Our Jump to Self-Employment
I started my last day job right out of college in June 2005 and expected to work for 30 years or more. We planned to retire on what we could squirrel away in my 401k, two Roth IRA’s, stock investments, and my husband’s pension as a teacher. But my online business took off in 2011 and all our plans changed in less than 4 months.
I was self-employed by the end of July 2011 and my husband joined me at home in January 2012. I would never have dreamed until then that we would put all of our eggs in a self-employment basket, but there it was staring me in the face. Not only did we need to worry about the normal things like making enough to pay our bills, but we did truly have to change our mindsets in order to function well while working from home.
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18 Comments Budgeting in the Fun Stuff on Mar 4th 2013