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How to Start Your Financial Future Out on the Right Foot – Part Deux

Financial Future

Last time we talked about starting out your financial future when embarking on adulthood. This is a crucial time in anyone’s life because the decisions that you make during early adulthood can really make or break your future financially. We broke down the two biggies in the last article: cash and credit. In this article, we are going to dive into your credit score and debit cards. So let’s jump in! Benefits of Increasing Your Credit Score If you are putting things on credit and not paying off your monthly balance, then you are directly affecting your credit score NEGATIVELY. This is the opposite of what you want to do because your credit score can impact more than you think it can. On the flip side, if you pay your credit card off every month, you are only INCREASING your credit score. The bonus here is that the higher your credit score, the more you qualify for big purchases in the future. Two of these biggies are cars and houses, with a smaller third possibility at business loans and/or credit cards to start a business. Some employers and rental companies even look at your credit score as an indicator of ...

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How to Start Your Financial Future Out on the Right Foot

Financial Freedom

  So, you’ve graduated high school and are embarking upon your wide open future. Going to college is an exciting time for most. But, it can also be a huge stepping stone with your financial future. College is the time that most people are first on their own financially, at least partially, and get their first credit card. So what is the best way to handle all of this newfound freedom and secure your financial future at the same time? Cash I know that the saying is “Cash is King,” and it still is for the most part. The reason for this saying is because when you are paying for something with cash, it doesn’t affect your credit and therefore your financial future in any way, shape or form. If you pay for things with cash, you don’t have to worry about getting authorization from a bank. You just pull out your wallet and call it a day. Cash is one of those things that is pretty easy for a college student to make because there are plenty of jobs, and side hustles, that pay straight cash. Here are a few examples, some that I personally embarked upon to make ...

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Can You Help People Who Don’t Want to Help Themselves?

Lord knows we’ve made our share of financial mistakes in the past. Once we got sick and tired of being chained to debt, we did something about it. In all honestly, we didn’t have the first clue about what to do or where to start, but by searching, studying, and asking for advice, we learned how to take control of our finances. Being in control gave us our lives back. Now, when I see someone struggle as I once did, my first instinct is to help. Sadly, I’ve found that almost never works. Can you help people who don’t want to help themselves? Change is Scary There are far worse things in life than being in debt, but since this is a financial blog, we’ll put everything in the context of money issues only. Have you ever wondered why people who struggle financially seem to repeat the same mistakes over and over? I think it’s because change is scary. Even if your life is in financial ruin, it might be all you’ve ever known. Sometimes, in it’s own weird way, dysfunction is comforting. As long time readers might  know, we’ve gone to great lengths trying to help family members who ...

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5 Steps to Going from Two Incomes to One

Going from two incomes to one

To some, it may seem impossible to go from living off of two incomes to living off of one, but millions of Americans are living this way of life every single day. There are many reasons why families live off of one income – from someone losing a job to medical reasons to wanting to stay home with young children. Whatever your reason, it can be very advantageous to live off of one income instead of two, including having a better handle on your finances, eliminating items you don’t need (such as cable) and having more freedom in your family unit. If you’re currently living off of two incomes but hoping to go down to one, here are five crucial steps you’ll need to take. Step 1: Evaluate your budget in detail Write down every single fixed and variable expense and take a hard look at what you can reduce or eliminate. After eliminating items such as cable, expensive cell phone plans and weekly trips to the coffee shop, see where you’re at. The harsh reality is that you may need to downsize your home in order to make the dream of living off of one income a reality. By ...

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Chapter 7 Bankruptcy: Are You Eligible?

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

In your journey toward financial clarity, there will come a time when you will need to take an honest look at your debt. If you’re lucky, you might be in a position to pay off your debt and improve your financial picture. However, if your debts are far greater than your income, or if you have had a series of misfortunes that have left you financially bereft, you might have no option but to file Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. What is Chapter 7 Bankruptcy? Before we talk about what Chapter 7 is, we should discuss what it is not: Chapter 7 bankruptcy is not a way for people to shirk their responsibilities or defraud their creditors. It is a way for honest people, who have fallen on hard times financially, to eliminate their debts and start over with a clean slate. Because it is designed to forgive honest debt, there are several criteria you must meet to be eligible to file. Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Criteria Because Chapter 7 is reserved for those who truly cannot pay their bills, there are several criteria that you must meet before you can file. The biggest criterion is the chapter 7 means test. The Means ...

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