Common Excuses Not To Start Saving Money

Common Excuses Not To Start Saving Money

Saving money can be difficult, but with the right guidance putting away emergency funds can help deal with an unexpected repair bill you can’t afford. However, one the hardest parts of saving money is to overcome all excuses for not doing so already.

If you want to put away money for a rainy day, experts generally recommend saving roughly three months of your current income. Depending on how much you make, this total can vary significantly. This way, if you encounter a life event, such as job loss, this will be able to take the pressure off of your budget while you figure things out.

Excuse: You Have A Bad History With Saving
You may have tried to save money in the past, but had little success. However, this shouldn’t be your excuse for not trying now, says U.S. News and World Report.

Over the years, your financial situation can change, making it more important to put money away. For example, if you have children or a new car that could need repairs in the future, putting away cash is that much more important.

Additionally, if you have hopped around job positions in recent years, you may be earning more now than you did in the past, which can also make it easier to start saving.

Excuse: You Have Too Much Debt
Debt payments can make it difficult to put money away. This includes financial obligations, such as auto to students loans to credit card debt. However, over time, the more debt you pay off, the more you should be able to save.

As you pay down debt and reduce your balance, the amount of interest you owe is subsequently reduced, resulting in smaller monthly payments. With this money you save, you could put it into your emergency fund to get the ball rolling for additional savings.

Excuse: The Economy Makes It Difficult To Save
This is one of the oldest excuses in the book, but every generation has certain economic trials they must overcome. Although you may spend more money on everyday items as wages remain stagnant, you need to reassess what you’re spending your money on.

If you regularly make small purchases that you can live without, consider cutting these costs from your budget. While these may not seem like very much on their own, they can add up to a considerable amount of money over time.

Excuse: My Spouse Spends Too Much Money
If your primary excuse for not saving money is that your spouse spends too much money, it’s time for a discussion about your finances. It’s much easier to save money if you both you and your spouse are on the same page.

Additionally, if your spouse’s spending is a subject of tension, this could develop into bigger problems later on, so it could be beneficial to address any problems before it ruins your relationship.

Creating A Savings Account Could Be Viable Solution
Once you whip your budget into shape, it’s time to make a place to start accumulating your savings. This could come in the form of a high-yield savings account, which would allow your money to grow and mature by collecting interest.

Make sure you emergency fund has it’s own account separate from your everyday account. This can reduce any temptation you may have to spend you money on unnecessary items.…

Dealing With Contractors To Make Home Repairs

Dealing With Contractors To Make Home Repairs

Dealing With Contractors To Make Home RepairsThe are many different costs associated with homeownership, and unexpected repairs account for some of those expenses. All it takes is a simple electrical short or broken pipe to make your property uninhabitable. If you are ever confronted with a home repair bill you can’t afford, consider a bad credit signature loan to pay for it and keep your financial footing.

Depending on when your home was built, there are a number of different repairs that are common to certain eras. For example, if it was constructed between 1940 and 1960, it may have drafty windows, electrical systems too small to handle you demand and asbestos issues, says AOL Real Estate. Meanwhile, home constructed between 1960 and 1980 commonly have issues with attic and roof ventilation, wiring and the siding.

No matter what the problem is, an unexpected home repair can really ruin your day. But even if you come up with the available funds to pay for repairs, there’s always the off chance the contractor you hire may take you for a ride. This is especially important for homeowners in the Northeast affected by Hurricane Sandy.

“When you have 10,000 houses that need repairs and you have three contractors, there’s going to be some price inflation,” Joseph Hammond told Fox Business. “There’s nothing you can do other than pay what you need to pay to get the work done. With that said, if the price is triple or excessively higher than projected, that should serve as a red flag.”

Check Out Their Experience
In the age of the internet, there are a number of different outlets to find contractors to make home repairs you can’t do yourself. With a few clicks of the mouse, you can instantly have access to reviews and other information from professionals in your area. It’s generally recommended to only hire a contractor with several years of experience.

Meanwhile, if you have any friends or family in the area who recently had work done of their homes, ask them how their experience was and if they would recommended their contractor.

Are They Certified?
In most states, people who work on your home are required to have special certification. This can help ensure they are qualified to do the job and it keeps you safe. However, this doesn’t guarantee that the individual will be great at their job, but it certainly weeds out any amateurs.

Additionally, some areas record grievances and complaints from homeowners about contractors. Once you obtain their certification number, you can likely search it online to find any issues the contractor in question may have had in the past. These problems listed can range from going over budget to doing a shoddy job.

Get A Quote
When shopping around for a contractor, it’s a good idea to get quotes from at least a few professionals. This will make sure you get the best person for the job.

Contractors generally give you a price estimate for a repair job as a single dollar amount, but if you get these expenses itemized, this will help you stay on top of exactly where all of your money is going. Just remember, while it may be tempting to go with the contractor with the most affordable quote, spending a little extra for better craftsmanship could be a better decision.…

Financing Your Furry Friends: the Real Cost of Pet Ownership

Financing Your Furry Friends: the Real Cost of Pet Ownership

Pets are an integral part of the American household. Some families are willing to spend a significant amount of money on supplies and trips to the vet. Others throw elaborate birthday bashes and even include their dogs and cats in their Christmas shopping plans.

Nearly 90 percent of the 64.1 million dog owners and 63.8 million cat owners consider their pets part of the family, according to Pet Finder. This mindset not only results in increased spending on pets, but may also impact consumers’ major financial decisions.

An estimated 63 percent of dog owners bought a home while keeping their pet in mind. In addition, 37 percent of cat owners have let their pet impact their decision making when they purchased a car.

With the holiday season approaching, 63 percent of dog owners and 58 percent of cat owners plan to purchase gifts for their pets. This equals an estimated $5 billion in holiday spending. A notable share of dog owners also throw a birthday party in honor of their pet every year.

Costs Of A Trip To The Vet

Similar to human medical bills, a trip to the vet can cost a significant amount of money.

According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, the average annual costs of vet care for a cat is $160. Dog owners face average costs closer to $235. Meanwhile, one in six pet owners face vet bills totaling more than $1,000.

Larger bills could be the result of owners not taking their pets to the vet for annual checkups. Failure to do so often allows minor ailments to evolve into more serious conditions. However, this can be difficult, as nearly one-third of Americans claim they can’t afford vet visits.

Whether it’s for an annual visit or during an emergency, there are a number of ways to cope with the cost of the vet. Dipping into your savings, using your credit card or taking advantage of small personal loans are all viable solutions. Examining your budget is the best way to determine which option meets your financial needs.…

Banks have acquired a bad reputation lately and it hasn’t been entirely unwarranted

Banks have acquired a bad reputation lately and it hasn’t been entirely unwarranted

From Bank of America’s attempt to charge $5 monthly for debit cards to Chase’s $20 billion loss on a bad trade, the press surrounding traditional banking has made consumers weary.

Throw overdraft fees, hidden charges and poor customer service into the mix and most are left wishing for the days of stuffing cash in a mattress.

According to the Washington Post, 821,000 households dropped out of the banking system between 2019 and 2021 amidst the recession.

But for many accustomed to the average checking and savings account system, joining the ranks of the 17 million unbanked consumers can be a bit unnerving. Anyone considering a departure from their banks should consider a few of the options available before they choose to go bank-free.
Where do the “unbanked” put their cash?bad banking history calls for a change

The safety and ease of a bank is a leading reason for going the traditional route with cash. Daily Finance reports that a check-cashing store in New York charges $18.60 to cash $1,000 and $93 to cash $5,000 – a nearly two percent fee for depositing. Banks on the other hand usually allow free direct deposit, eliminating the trip to a cash-checking store and the service charge.

On the other hand, Time reported that this year a spike in bank fees swept the nation. Overdraft fees neared $30 and the average cost to use a non-network ATM rose to $3.68. While individually, these fees are less than the cost to cash $5,000 the potential to accumulate multiple charges each month is greater–making it easy to surpass $93.

For many, cashing checks and utilizing traditional accounts is a game of choosing the lesser of two evils. But other options remain.

Prepaid cards have become increasingly popular and companies like Simple are working to provide a bank feel without the unpleasant corporate additions.

Stephen A. Sam, CEO of Tri-Fin Services, weighed the pros and cons of leaving a bank.

“On the one hand, you might be able to find more attractive rates of return on your money,” says Stephen. “However, not having that brick and mortar convenience of going to an ATM and getting less overall security can be a pitfall.”

There are multiple options for those ready to leave the banking system, but it’s important for consumers to understand their own deposit and withdrawal needs and find an alternative that best suits those habits.
Is it the consumers or the institutions?

While banks certainly have a share in the blame for the expense and problems that lurk in the traditional structure, consumers must also take some responsibility. The UK just found that financial illiteracy costs their country £3.4 billion ($5.48 billion) a year. And the US has zero bragging rights over the UK when it comes to financial literacy, as our financial education structure is equal to if not less than that of our neighbors across the pond.

Ultimately, the trouble lies somewhere in the middle according to Michael C. Meyers of Truth in Equity.

“The banks themselves are not the problem; it is what they teach us about managing our personal finances and the relationship they have with our money. It’s how we use banks that is the problem,” says Meyers.

Where to deposit wages and the smartest way to withdraw those funds will always be a struggle because there’s no one perfect way to do it. Backing a choice of banking services with a strong understanding of personal habits and the products that are available is the only way a consumer can find the right fit for their finances.…