The company I work for froze our pensions a couple of years ago. Now there’s rumor that retirees will soon lose their health benefits (these kind of rumors are almost always right). People here and elsewhere bemoan these developments and heap curses upon our executives for cheating them out of their 401k retirement plan benefits.
I hate to be the one to break this to you…
Pensions and pension benefits are gone and they’re not coming back.
I don’t say this in a snooty ‘I’m saving for retirement, why didn’t you’ tone. You think I like losing money and benefits? Hell, no. I think it’s tragic. But it’s a fact.
I feel particularly bad for people around 50 in situations like this. What’s left of their pension isn’t nearly enough to live on and they probably haven’t been saving in a 401(k). If they have, those savings simply haven’t had much time to compound.
Is there any hope?
For people caught in the gap between ‘enough time to save on their own for retirement’ and ‘we got our pensions,’ there’s sadly little for them to do. Sure, there’s the catch-up provision on IRAs and 401(k)s. But there are still two problems with that – most people don’t contribute enough to get to the regular IRS maximum and even if they did, $5,000 (for a 401k) or $1,000 (IRA) more per year just ain’t that much.
For everybody else, check out this simple way to calculate if you’re saving enough for retirement. If you’re not, there’s still time. The Roth 401(k) is good for saving – use it. Put money away in your IRA. Do what you can, because relying on the promise of a pension is not a plan. We have a lot of articles to help you better manage your money and prepare for retirement.
Don’t let the idea of learning to manage your money scare you. Anyone can do it, and just remember that you’ll be improving your life by doing so. Once you learn the right techniques and get the right tools to help you, you’ll have no trouble managing your money. Think of it as a game, you just need to learn the rules and you’ll be winning in no time.
There are basically nine steps or ideas that you will need to get your money plans in order.
9 Basic Money Management Principles
1. Get ready for a change – Starting basic money management techniques can be hard, but if you accept that your current habits aren’t work, you will be ready to move forward.
2. Surround yourself – Find a community of people in the same situation you are, either through an online message board or even friends in real life.
3. Examine your situation – Take time to see what you’ve been doing in the past, and how you are managing your money currently.
4. Consider the future – You can’t reach a goal if you don’t know where you are headed. Think about what your life will be like once your money is under control.
5. Make plans – Once you know what you want, start making a set plan to get there.
6. Commitment – A plan only works if you stick to it with some dedication.
7. Choices – Consider your plan every single day, and make money choices that reflect your plan. Remember the goals you are trying to reach.
8. Reward – Congratulate yourself each time you reach a milestone, or just make a sound financial decision.
9. Keep going – Once you reach those goals, start the pattern all over again with a new goal in mind. By keeping your financial management broken down in to reasonable steps, you will keep yourself from getting overwhelmed with it all. Each step is easy, so stick to one at a time. There is no rush, so you can focus on just one step each week if you want. Consider it a game, and concentrate on being the winner at the end. Design your financial plan to suit your lifestyle and your needs, not anyone else. Your plan needs to help you solve your problems and get you where you want to go. That’s all that matters.
me to our new website – How To Get Out Of Debt! More than ever before, Americans find themselves in a lot of debt. In fact, Americans have collectively piled up the biggest mountain of debt in the history of world. All of this debt has enabled us to enjoy an extremely high standard of living for decades, but now the day of reckoning has come for many of us. You see, the truth is that it is a lot more fun getting into debt than getting out of it. Now that the U.S. economy is a giant mess, many Americans suddenly find themselves out of work or without enough money to pay the bills. Personal bankruptcies and mortgage defaults are at record highs and they keep climbing. A lot of Americans have gotten into a lot of trouble with debt.
How To Get Out Of Debt Now!
So is there any way out? Well, yes, there is, but it is not always easy.
We are not one of those websites who are going to promise you a “fast” or an “easy” solution.
Yes, you can “consolidate” or “renegotiate” some or all of your debts, but the reality is that sometimes doing that can make your problems even worse in the long run.
But very few people have the discipline to spend less money or to find ways to make more money.
Most people are lazy.
Yes, there are other things you can do to reduce your interest rates and make your payments easier to handle, but if you are not willing to spend less and/or make more money, then in the long run you are not going to make it.
Getting out of debt requires determination.
It requires commitment.
You are going to have to decide that you simply will not give up until it is done.
Are you ready to do that?
If so, then you might be ready for the material on this site.
Financial Freedom LLC has experts have actually know that in these hard moments of financial crisis folks looking for support to deal with financial obligation. As a result, they have built legitimate as well as effective strategies, modified to customer needs, to help them handle their financial issues immediately.
They have not designed these services to produce more debt to their customers, however to relieve the concern made by monthly costs as well as banking company creditors.
The provider collaborates with leading economic institutions as well as makes strategic financial investments to adequately support the financial demands of its consumers.
The financial professionals have started www.ourdebtfreelives.com accordinged to the outcomes of some detailed economic investigation on the international market.
The financial situation has actually enhanced financial institution passion rates as well as secured the financing conditions. Thus, lots of debtors located on their own not able in order to pay payday loans, running the risk of in order to lose their works or homes. Those which require the programs in this company will receive legitimate information as well as the important devices to restore their financial independence.
The business additionally supplies consumers lawful defense via special insurance plans, which deal with functions including personal bankruptcy. This program supplies qualified attorneys that are going to represent you in court versus collectors.
The financial freedom principal programs that www.ourdebtfreelives.com could offer are actually:
Personal debt Negotiation-– that is a monetary management program made in order to lower the debtor’s month-to-month prices.
Provided that the consumer carries on in order to pay his debt monthly, the creditor will certainly not change the costs or even the interest. If the customer discontinues the settlements, the equilibrium will definitely continue to grow due to continuing passion fine.
At this moment, customers might seek the financial institution in order to alter the payday loan terms, may work with a legal professional or a monetary business as www.ourdebtfreelives.com in order to work out on their behalf.
Learner Payday loan Nonpayment– that is actually a restructuring course that consists of changing a timeless education loan with a brand new one, even more convenient to ensure young pupils.
This provider guarantees in order to offer many advantages over various other re-financing brokers, such as faster end results, minimized regular monthly settlements, an one-of-a-kind creditor, adjustable settlement alternatives, a variety of reprieve options and also no minimum or even maximum loan amount.
Tax Responsibility— this program delivers the consumer a well-established payment strategy to rejoin all the condition taxes.
The client may settle all state fees in monthly installments without influencing the loved ones budget as well a lot. The class is a genuine help to ensure consumers experiencing financial troubles and also that carry out not desire to acquire sanctions coming from the tax obligation polices.
Credit maintenance— this service assists in order to strengthen your credit rating or even credit rating past.
How these principals will lead to financial freedom?
www.ourdebtfreelives.com professionals could deliver critical data as well as real answers in order to improve your credit rating score, based upon thorough investigation of the whole private credit rating record. This is key in achieving financial freedom!
This is essential to learn that if you possess credit score past, such as repayment problems, for instance, your rating will definitely be fairly reduced.
Remain your credit score memory card harmony low as well as obtain smaller sized loans you will considerably strengthen your credit report score if you are going to pay your expenses on time.
Www.ourdebtfreelives.com assure to improve your credit rating document via numerous strategies, providing a warranty of $ 10,000 to sustain this declaration.
Okay, all this talk about a budget. You know what a budget is and why you should have one, but how to budget effectively?
In the beginning, a good idea is to keep track of everything you spend money on for 1 month. You can set it up in a notebook with three columns, one for the description of what you bought, the second for your income, and the third for what you spend.
On this form, you must record everything. Even if you just spend a dollar on a soda, record it because in the end, both sides need to balance out. This is a good habit to keep up all the time, but it isn’t necessary.
Next, you need to examine what you’ve bought. Sort through it and decide which expenses are fixed expenses, or expenses that are for the same amount every month. These types of expenses are most often bills like cell phone bill, insurance, etc.
How to budget effectively requires you to list all these expenses. Write down next to them the amount to be spent.
Then look at the things you spent money on that were changing, such as snacks, movie tickets, gas, and gifts. Gas should be made one section. Take how much you spend in one week and multiply it by 4, for one month. If you spend $20 a week, put aside $80 a month for gas.
I have a certain amount of money set aside each month for gifts, whether I have any gifts to buy that month or not. It’s a really good idea. All you have to do is calculate about how much you will spend in a year on gifts and divide it by 12. This will come in really handy at Christmas time. If you have to pay for your own clothes or personal hygiene products, it may be a good idea to do the same with these necessities.
Now, for the remaining categories, you need to use your own discretion. Use a Budget Calculator to Calculate how much you spent on everything else which should include food, the movies, mini golf, books, clothes, and just about anything you chose to spend for fun or your own amusement. Does it seem like an outrageous number?Did you spend $300 dollars in one month on this stuff? I can tell you, as a teenager that is outrageous.
Depending on how old you are, you should make this expense anywhere between $20 and $100.Although, I think $100 is even a little steep. Set this amount aside every month and stick to it. You may even find yourself saving some of it for more exciting months. If you put aside $50 a month and you only spend $35, by the end of the year you’ll have an extra $180 that you can spend on something big to treat yourself.
Knowing how to budget effectively will lead to improving your financial situation
Every month, you should spend your first paychecks on important bills. Set up a little file system and put aside each expense in a slot. Look at all your expenses as a bill including fun money and gifts. Let’s say you get paid weekly and your expenses add up to $200. If your paychecks are for $100, you can set aside all your expense money in the first two weeks and then the checks for the rest of the month can go right to savings.
After you pay for each expense for the month, cross them out so that you know that they have been paid. You don’t want to pay any bill more than once.
Now that you know how to budget your money, learn how to budget your time, and you’ll be on your way to feeling rich!
So Why Should I Budget? You know what a budget is and you still aren’t convinced that this inconvenience will be of any benefit for you. Why should you budget? Why is a budget important?
A budget is important for people of all ages, from teenagers to retirees. It’s critical to budget if you want to get the most out of your money. This can lead to financial freedom!
When you start a budget, in the beginning, it might seem very constricting. You feel like you can’t just go out and buy something on a whim. That’s partly true. You can’t just go out and blow fifty bucks whenever you feel like it, but it isn’t that strict. There are some great budget templates out there.
When allotting yourself a certain amount of fun money, you can spend that whenever you want. You just have to remember that once it’s gone, you’re done for the month. Of course, this doesn’t include emergencies such as car trouble.
It’s important to put this restriction on your finances so that you are able to save. Saving money is the easiest way for teens to make money. Like they say, a penny saved is a penny earned.
So then, why should I budget? You should budget not only to teach yourself self control and learn good habits when you are older, but so that you are able to save money.
Having money saved will keep you out of trouble in case of emergency and will allow you to have money for the big things such as a car, or vacation. But I believe the biggest benefit of a budget, especially today, is the fact that it will help keep you out of debt.
With a budget, you keep yourself in check and will always know what you can afford. Debt is a horrible thing to have because it can affect so many parts of your life, including relationships, and even just your own happiness and stress levels.
You must remember that a budget isn’t magic. Just because you plan out your expenses, it doesn’t mean you will have money to pay for everything of your dreams. Just because you stick something in your budget, it doesn’t mean you’re going to get it. Everything has to be balanced out between what you make and what you spend.
Budgeting is a great way to make money as long as you look at it the right way!
What is a budget exactly? A budget is an estimate of expected income and expense for a give period of time in the future. But what is that really? This means that after you cash your check, you don’t blow half of it on the way home. Instead, you take all of what you make from any job you may have and you plan it all out. Every dime is accounted for.
Instead of just paying bills when they come in and buying whatever you want whenever you want you have to plan it out. Most people are probably used to this, but it could cause a lot of problems. You might forget which bills were paid off for which month. It’s important to be organized when it come to money.
You must have all your expenses planned out and set up for each month. This way you know exactly what you need to spend each month. When you have all your bills planned out, you don’t have to worry if you remembered to pay them all.
Even if you don’t get formal bills a budget will help you keep track of all your expenses. Maybe you just give your parents money to pay for your cell phone. In fact, this could be easier to mix up if you don’t keep track. You might end up paying twice for one month. I’m sure you don’t want to do that.
In your expenses, you must include everything you could possibly spend money on, including fixed expenses such as gas and insurance, but also variable expenses such as fun money, and money for gifts.If you have a set amount, you won’t go over. You must budget out every dollar you make.
By spending this way, you will always be spending nearly the same amount every month and may just have room to start saving. I’ve been budgeting since I was about 16 and although sometimes I go off of it, it has helped me organize a lot. Also, I’ve gotten my spending under control and I have been able to save for a lot of important things such as a car and college tuition.
When you get your paycheck, is it usually gone a few days later? You probably feel like you don’t get paid enough because you’re always running out of money. That may be the case, but it’s probably not.
Spending money so quickly and frivolously is not good for many reasons:
The obvious reason, you have no more money, so you can’t buy anything until your next payday.
If you’ve already run out of money, most likely, you haven’t saved anything.
You are setting yourself up for a future lifestyle of living paycheck to paycheck.
If this is the case, you probably don’t live by a budget. Most people don’t. A budget is not just for adults, teens should budget, too. A budget is an estimate of expected income and expense for a give period of time in the future. With a budget, you would have a careful plan for every dollar you make and spend.This probably sounds tedious, time consuming, and not worth your time.
But wait! What if I told you that with a budget you would have more money? Yes, now I have your attention. Okay, maybe you won’t actually have more money, but you will save more if done properly and carefully.
In this section, you will learn the importance of budgeting, different ways to budget, and more. Read on if you want to stop worrying about your money and learn how to budget.
How to check my credit score? Does it even matter? The answer is Yes! So where do I start? Well, a totally free credit reports are an ideal technique to protect your credit score and hold tabs in your credit history. Learn about filing for any totally free report and how you are able to transform your credit ratings.
In a failing economy extra individuals are concerned in regards to the future of their credit than something else. Some men and women report improved anxiety levels once they take into consideration their credit, and are usually in the dark about their score. A credit ratings is fundamentally a quantity (0 to 700 or so) that determines how nicely you pay back loans, credit cards, and bills. A greater credit score is good, but a perfect score is not needed and normally discouraged.
How To Check My Credit Score For Free?
You can find a variety of solutions that let you file for a credit report facts. It is actually critical to understand that all credit reports are cost-free if asked for by the customer. As someone with credit history you have the correct to as numerous free reports as you may need. It’s encouraged to routinely verify your credit score for errors and also identity theft signs.
In light of financial struggles, a credit report can assist you visually see what you’ll want to alter. For example, if your report particulars past due balances you’ve got by no means heard of within your life, you must almost certainly file a report for identity theft. If your report only features a couple of debts listed then you can spend them off speedily to enhance your score.
One of the most vital issue to seek out on a credit reports will be the warning indicators. For victims of identity theft, the very first sign is usually a lowered credit ratings and listings that claim the individual owes anything. These debts could be to bank card companies, billing organizations or maybe a quantity of other sources. They may be risky and can drastically ruin your credit score -leaving you in financial ruin. Credit theft can be a main issue, and you should really usually defend your identity. A free report could be the ideal technique to take the required measures to save your credit.
Use Caution When Giving Out Personal Information For Your Credit Score
You should generally be wary of scam organizations that endeavor to get you to buy credit ratings. These are not trusted and must be avoided. A correct credit report company will present 1 absolutely free report annually. There are a few firms that provide this and also you can receive a report from each and every one particular. Checking your credit ratings Does not reduced your score. A credit score is only lowered when a company makes an inquiry for loans or credit cards. Even then the score is not lowered substantially. Having a budget in place can be helpful in reducing debt.
To acquire a no cost credit report you basically want to fill out the required information and facts to a reliable company. The firm ought to never email you requesting individual facts. Within a couple of weeks you’ll get a detailed letter displaying all the discrepancies together with your score. Then you can take the initiative to contact these providers and learn what you may do to repair your score.
Helping you make better spending decisions is a primary purpose of this blog. Sticking to them is the other. These budgeting tips require little time and effort, but will have a major impact on your savings account.
There are a two ways your brain is hard-wired that make better spending decisions hard.
Adaptation to pleasure
Budgeting Tips – Adaptation to Pleasure
Our brains are hardwired to notice novelty. When an experience is new you get a lot of pleasure from it. As you continue to have the same experience, you get less pleasure from it over time. Pleasure turns to comfort, and disappointment can set in. “I thought this would make me happier. Now I’m disappointed because I’m not as happy with this as I thought I would be.”
The second reason we adapt to pleasure is that our reference point changes. Maybe you get a new job and you’re making $10,000 more a year than you were before. You’re thrilled. Then you find out that you’re making 5% less than the next newest employee. Now you aren’t thrilled – your reference point has changed. Instead of comparing to what you used to make, you are now comparing to what you could be making.
Budgeting Tips – Mispredicting Pleasure
We consistently predict that things will make us happier or more miserable than they actually do.
The extreme example of this is lottery winners vs. accident victims. Several studies in psychology show that the strongest predictor of a person’s level of happiness after their circumstances change is their level of happiness before the change. Of course, this isn’t true immediately after the change, but over time people tend to revert to a sort of happiness “setpoint”.
Of course, accident victims are less happy than they were before – the point is the different is MUCH smaller than anyone would expect.
And this more recent study also confirms that the immediate impact of change in circumstances is much bigger than the long-term effect.
Daniel Kahneman calls this the hedonic treadmill. We seek pleasure, and novel experiences provide it, but then we adapt and the pleasure turns to comfort. We continue to seek pleasure, but now it takes another new thing to produce it, so we are always on the treadmill looking for the next “hit”.
Better Spending Decisions – The 5-Minute Solution
OK, so you’d like to get off the treadmill, but you still want to experience the pleasure, right? This simple practice can help you make better
First, become mindful of your spending AND how much enjoyment it brings you. Just writing down what you spent helps you budget, but it doesn’t help you evaluate how your budget fits into your life.
Personal note: Those “write down everything you spend for 30 days” journal suggestions used to make me crazy! I hate!!! keeping records (you’ll hear me say that often). However, this way is relatively painless and it helps me learn more about what spending decisions are satisfying over the long term and which ones are not.
How to Implement These Budgeting Tips
Ourdebtfreelives’s website has a lot of great articles on creating a budget. Regular bills don’t usually factor into your “joy index” unless you buy a new house or do something else unusual. For example, this week I bought a new cell phone and case, an exercise ball and a poster with exercises on it. I added those items to my spreadsheet, but not the regular monthly bills I paid.
Here are your columns:
was it a need or a want?
Joy index – scale of 1 – 10
1 mo. followup joy index
3 mo. followup joy index (unless 1 month was 0)
6 mo. followup joy index (unless 3 month was 0)
You can track this daily or weekly (I enter any new items daily, but only review once a month). If you wait longer than that it will probably seem like a bigger chore than it is. Over time, as you watch your satisfaction with each item decrease it becomes a little easier to remind yourself before you spend the money that the joy you experience from any given purchase is probably going to be short-lived. Another way to increase savings is by increasing your income. We have a great article on Sideline Business Models to get you that extra income.
Budgeting Tips – Final Thoughts
Give yourself time for this to make a difference in your spending decisions. Some of the research in this area used professors in the field as test subjects and they were no less prone to mis-predict pleasure or to adapt to it than others who were not familiar with the concept. If even the professionals fall for this, you shouldn’t get too down on yourself when it happens to you.
Curious if there is a way to reduce adaptation? Funny you should ask – keep reading to discover two simple practices that can reduce adaptation and get you enjoying your life more.