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Archive for October, 2015

9 Great Money Saving Tips for Young Couples

State Your Goals
You must be having some common or different goals which both of you would like to materialize. Then, be it getting married (if you’re not already), possessing a house, bearing kids, or doing a Master’s degree in any particular field. Share these individual or joint goals with each other, fix a time frame for each goal, and plan accordingly to know how much money you need to save.
Formulate a Budge Plan
Maintain a catalog of your daily expenses and keep track of it for over a month. Then compare your total expenditure with your total income, and verify whether you’re living according to your means. By maintaining an open communication, this strategy will help you to come up with a cost saving plan, by cutting off unnecessary expenses, thus retaining savings for the future.
Stay Clear of Debts
Avoid falling in a debt trap, and if you’re already in it, make sure your topmost priority is to repay the debt(s). It may not be possible always, but it will help in the long run if you save enough cash to buy something expensive, rather than buying it on credit or through a loan.
Plan Ahead for Pension
So what if you’re not old enough! If you want to continue your lifestyle the way it is now, you’re going to have to consider how to pay for it when you retire. A pension plan serves as a medium to fiscal stability after retirement. The earlier you start, the better it is for your retirement.
Save Money on Your Electricity Bills
Use energy efficient light bulbs like CFL or LED. They last for many years and consume less amount of electricity. Unplug your appliances (TV, washing machine) when not in use to avoid vampire power usage. To protect your electronic appliances from a power surge, keep them plugged into a surge protector.
Call for Free Using Smartphone Apps
In this digital age, most of us like to chat. In addition to chatting, smartphone Apps such as WhatsApp, Viber, or Skype allow a cheap or free calling facility, provided the person you want to talk to is also online. This helps in cutting down on those telephone bills. But do mind your Internet data allowance first.
Change Old Equipment Into Cash Using the Internet
A host of websites help in switching your old items, like a mobile, camcorder, or TV for cash. You can sell your old item for a certain price online, which acts as a marketplace for used goods, ranging from furniture to electronic items. This option also assists in releasing the pressure off your mind in cleaning out your closet of old or unused items.
Go on Dates That are Less Expensive
While it may look tempting to go to that fancy restaurant or movie at the mall, they can also pinch your savings. Look for cost affordable options instead, like hiking or picnicking at a nearby scenic location, planning a dinner, movie night, or a game night (cards, Scrabble); the choices are limitless.
Create a Joint Account
A joint account can make finance handling easier and also fortifies trust in a partnership. You can make the most of your money by consolidating expenses. Talk about it at length and make certain that both of you are comfortable with this option.

7 Money Mistakes to Stay Away From in your 20s

Approaching family/friends is easy, but is it a sensible decision?
Relationships are fragile no matter how much effort you invest in them, and when money comes into picture, it does some irreparable damage for sure. You’d rather preserve your friendship and family ties and go in for a bank loan.
“You only live once” is a motto that’s very popular among the young generation. The motto means enjoy every day of your life, even if it demands taking huge risks. However, when it comes to expenditure, be strict with yourself because wrong decisions made during your twenties can ruin everything for you. As you sail from your 20s to your 30s, you want to look back with pride for saving on some money. So what if you have to be foresighted early on and be more conscientious? You’ll realize the benefits of it all only afterwards. So, take our word as we roll out some major money mistakes to avoid in your 20s.
7 Damaging Mistakes to Avoid
College or not?
Many youngsters enter college just because they have to! What’s more, many are already weighed down by massive student loans that have to be carried forward for god knows how long. Sometimes, you may tend to choose the wrong field and waste all the money.

➨ Do this instead: If you are confused over your future educational course of action, may be take the year off by doing a job, and during that time, do the much-needed thinking. You’d rather want to take a decision while making some money for yourself, rather than wasting more money on your college education and classes that you really aren’t even interested in. Also, you could check some options for scholarships or grants rather than being in the burden of the loan.

Existing on credit cards
Well guys, this one’s straight and simple: unnecessary usage of credit cards for all your purchases can soon lead to debts. We understand that there’s this constant urge to spend on clothes, cars, or even partying. But, this is the real test for you, so save it.

➨ Do this instead: Limit yourself to one credit card and make use of its cash rewards. Pay for only what can be afforded at the moment and make timely credit card payments. You can enjoy but put an end to useless spending. Just buy what you need, and not what you want!

Lack of budgeting
Fail to set a monthly budget for your expenses and you soon could be spiraling down, heading towards debt, or maybe living paycheck to paycheck.
➨ Do this instead: Plan a budget so that you know where the money is being shelled out. All you need is a pen and paper for that! List your monthly expenditure and subtract that from your monthly salary. It’s from there that you can figure out on what you should cut down. This cutting back will only help you pay for groceries and other bills with ease, while saving up on some much-needed money.
Buying a car or borrowing money for a car
Just because you are in your twenties you don’t need a fancy car. C’mon! What’s the point in showing off your wealth by driving a car and later being burdened by the car insurance and the interest rate on the car loan? Your happiness of owning a car may just be short-lived.

➨ Do this instead: If you have planned your expenses well, and have saved some money regularly, it’s okay to afford a car. But don’t invest in a lavish one because along with the car comes the maintenance, plus you have the insurance and loan that comes in the whole package. If you think wisely, urban areas are not short of van pools and decent bus services. Use these services until the time is right to buy a new car.

Not saving for your future/retirement
This is the worst mistake you can commit, fellas. Period.

➨ Do this instead: We know, it is pretty early for twenty-somethings to plan for retirement, but eyeing an early investment in the form of Roth IRA is always a wise thing to do. Plus, the money you save, big or small, may later be beneficial when you need it the most. So, curtailing certain expenses can come to your rescue sooner than you know. You could begin with an emergency fund too. It’s simple. Set aside USD 1,000 to begin with every month; this goes into the emergency fund. Do this for 3 to 6 months after which you can raise the bar depending on your expenses/loans. It’ll help you navigate through rough weather.

Marrying too early or arranging for a lavish wedding
Marrying too early when you aren’t even sensible enough to save up on money can set a couple reeling under huge expenses instead of leading a life of harmony. And if you have a child too soon, child-rearing costs are gonna make you spend sleepless nights. Oh, well, another damaging mistake people commit is going in for an expensive wedding.

➨ Do this instead: We know, you may be head over heels and dying to settle down. But hastily making such a decision can lead you into trouble. Don’t let your heart rule over your head. Wait for a bit before you take the plunge. Debt from a wedding is that last thing you have on mind; you’d rather soak in wedded bliss. An expensive wedding is not equivalent to a successful marriage, so you can curtail expenses and still make it a memorable one.

Not insuring yourself
You are a life after all, and moreover, not unshakable, mind you. Not insuring yourself or your property might make you repent for it later on.

➨ Do this instead: You may come across situations that are uncalled-for, such as surgery or any other medical emergency, ambulance fee, replacing personal items following a break-in, etc. We never know what might befall us. Look around for competitive rates, then check your budget, and get yourself and your property insured soon.

The best thing about the 20s is that it gives you a lot of time on hand. You can come out of the mistakes you commit and enjoy your life. Back it up with smart financial decisions although it may seem like tall order. This will only lay the foundation for financial stability in the long term.