If there’s anything we all learned from 2020, it’s that things can change in a heartbeat and that the unexpected can create real havoc. Though there’s nothing you can do to stop fate’s freight trains from barreling down the tracks, there are steps you can take to minimize the stress you feel in its aftermath. One of those steps is both simple and remarkable in the power of its impact: Start paying your bills ahead of time, before they are due.
At first glance, it may seem like paying bills early won’t change anything. But there are three important ways that it makes a big difference.
Have you ever found yourself unable to log on to your credit card’s payment site on the day that a bill was due? Not only will paying early eliminate that nightmare from your life, but at the same time it will lift your FICO® Score. More than one third of your credit score is based...
The next step in your personal finance 101 journey is to take financial inventory -- what this means is, looking across your portfolio and financial situation and assessing where things stand today.
This inventory will set the groundwork for all subsequent planning: tax planning and management, financial investment planning, tax planning for retirement, and estate planning strategies, among others.
In this video, I show you how to step back and begin taking your financial inventory to solidify the foundation for future planning.
Freelance work and the gig economy have taken the nation by storm. A study commissioned by the Freelancers Union and freelance platform Upwork revealed that the gig economy’s work force reached an eye-popping 57 million Americans in 2019, with increasing numbers likely to join in the future. You can choose freelancing as your sole source of income or you can do it in your spare time for extra money, but whatever path you choose, you need to pay attention to how you’re managing your money — otherwise you’re liable to end up facing costly consequences. Here are seven personal finance tips that can benefit every person working as part of the freelance economy.
Being your own boss is a common dream, but it isn’t easy. When you go out on your own as a freelancer or gig worker, you need to be able to gauge how much income you need in order to make it both worthwhile and feasible. To make that determination, you start with how...
As you begin laying the foundation for your financial planning efforts (personal finance 101, as I like to call it), you need to have a clear starting point. This means you need to know your numbers: things like net income (after-tax income), net worth, your current lifestyle spending.
In this video, you'll learn how to calculate net monthly income, how to calculate your net worth, and how to analyze a balance sheet (your personal balance sheet).
Before you can develop a sound financial plan, you need to know your "why." This means understanding why you're even planning in the first place. What are you goals? What are your dreams? What and how much do you need to first achieve financial security?
Think of this process as personal finance 101.
In this video, we'll get you going on how to achieve financial security and how to start financial planning, by first determining that big question: "why?"
(We re-posted this video from our YouTube channel -- please click this link to subscribe!)
Obviously, the still-ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has been a major challenge for all of us since it kicked into high gear in March of 2020. In the months since, millions of people have found themselves out of a job and the ones that remained were suddenly faced with working remotely for the foreseeable future.
Even though a vaccine is in the process of being rolled out and a proverbial light at the end of the tunnel seems to finally be in sight, there's no denying that the impact of the pandemic will continue to be felt for quite some time. Case in point: according to one recent study conducted by the Mortgage Brokers Association's Research Institute for Housing America, about five million Americans were unable to make their rent or mortgage payments on December of 2020. To put this into context, that number translates to more than 5% of all renters and mortgage holders in the country.
COVID-19 and a Potential Mortgage Crisis: What You Need to Know
In addition to the significant...
Thanks to the significant challenges presented by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, more Americans than ever are struggling financially. With a lot of people out of work due to the staggering number of business closers, many are turning to credit cards to help make ends meet.
According to one recent study, total credit card balances in the United States ballooned to a massive $893 billion as of the first quarter in 2020. People with average or good credit scores ranging from 670 to 739 tend to carry the most debt, with an average of about $9,712 per card.
Thankfully, all hope is not lost. Even if you're currently carrying large balances, there are a number of steps you can take to find the relief that you seek – you just need to keep a few key things in mind along the way.
Getting Out of Credit Card Debt: One Step at a Time
By far, one of the best moves you can make to get out of credit card debt involves using a balance transfer card as strategically as possible....