In today’s world, with the endless commercials on zero interest credit cards, loans, and more credit cards, its sad to know that many Americans know zero about saving, budgeting, or anything even remotely surrounding their finances.
In fact, as recently as 2013, an astounding 75% of Americans do not have enough money in their savings account to cover any financial emergency should anything happen unexpectedly. So with that being said, let’s take a look at some options out there that could better guide you down the path to financial awareness.
Budgeting- The Basics
-the first thing to keep in mind when in comes to successful budgeting is to keep track of every single source of income you have coming in, whether its from wages, trusts, salary, benefits- every dollar coming in should be tracked and recorded. This offers a great starting point to begin your budget
-the next step after recording your income would be to record your expenses, so everything you spend money on- rent, utilities, travel, entertainment, you name it. An important tip is to separate your essentials (rent, utilities, etc) from the non-essentials (entertainment, eating out, etc). You can better see where your money is going this way.
-we all know that things happen unexpectedly and beyond our control financially; the best thing we can do is plan as best possible for anything that may occur. Simply setting aside several dollars every week or two in a separate account that is designated for emergencies will be more than simply doing nothing.
Options for Borrowing in the Short Term
There may come a time when we may need a bit of cash earlier than expected. Fortunately, there are options out there to help us with that, although we have to make sure we are taking advantage of these options in a responsible manner. Check out a few below:
-although many individuals have mixed feelings about payday loans, when use properly, they can come in handy tremendously when you are experienced unexpected financial problems, typically allowing individuals up to 30 days to pay the loan back. Just make sure you read all the fine print before signing on the dotted line.
-even though they aren’t as readily available as they used to be in the past, 0% interest cards are also an option. Typically the deals run for 6 months and borrowers won’t have to pay a dime more than what they spend. If you do decide to go this route make sure you pay off the balance on time to avoid a negative hit to your credit report.
Now, For All The Adventurers Out There
For those who are looking to get some extra cash in a less traditional way, also have the option of checking out online casino games such as, 888 Casino. Options such as these allow for safe and secure casino games for those who are into them. However, as with anything make sure you go into it responsibly!
Getting a handle in your finances, regardless of what way you go about it, can be an easy and simple thing to if done patiently and goals to what you want to accomplish. So break out that bank book and get moving!
If you’re experiencing short term financial problems, borrowing can be an ideal solution. There are various types of loans and options open to you. It’s important to get an understanding of your options before you decide which one is right for your situation. Take a look at these top five short term borrowing options available.
1. Payday loans
Payday loans have quickly become the most popular short term borrowing option. Designed specifically for short term cash flow problems, payday loans are usually provided for a maximum of 30 days. You need to have a bank account in order to receive the money and the payment of the loan will be taken in full, along with added interest on your next pay day. It’s important to choose a responsible lender such as Wonga, as there are a lot of loan sharks out there. You can get the money in your account the same day and there’s even the option to pay it back early.
Temporary overdrafts can often be arranged by your bank. Allowing you to go over your balance, the overdraft will usually come with added interest. It’s worth noting that some overdraft facilities can cost more than getting a payday loan. Therefore it’s important to compare your options before choosing this method.
3. Personal loans
Personal loans were once considered to be the most popular borrowing option available. Allowing you to borrow up to £25,000 unsecured cash, this option is ideal if you need a lot of money quickly. The term of the loan varies and short term options are available. However, before you choose this option you may want to think about re-mortgaging first. The Express has published an article highlighting the benefits of re-mortgaging instead of personal loans.
4. 0% interest credit cards
They aren’t as readily available as they used to be but 0% interest credit cards can be a good option. The 0% interest deals typically run for 6 months and you won’t have to pay a penny more than you spend. If you choose this option be sure to pay off the balance on time to avoid it having a negative impact on your credit report.
5. Borrow from friends and family
It may feel awkward asking friends and family for help, but it can be a much more affordable option. You won’t have to worry about interest and it’s much more relaxed than borrowing from a bank. Just be sure to pay the money back as soon as you can to avoid any potential arguments.
These are just five ways to borrow the money you need in the short term. Make sure you take both the advantages and disadvantages of all options into account before choosing what is right for you. No form of borrowing comes without its disadvantages. If you make the wrong choice it could end up damaging your credit rating and further dent your finances. No matter which avenue you choose to go down, be sure you’re borrowing from a reliable source.
It is amazing how few people actually plan and stick to a personal budget, however if you are looking to save a little cash or you are worried about debt, then the wisest thing you can do is to work out a budget and stick to it. Read our guide on working out a budget to help you get on top of the budgeting game today!
When working out expenses it is important to be realistic. If you smoke for example, instead of promising to kick the habit right now you should take account of what you spend on cigarettes and record it. Once you have a starting point like this it is much easier to know when you have overspent and when you need to make savings.
A financial emergency will creep up on the best of us at one time or another. The trick is how to cope with these and planning a financial emergency strategy is always a wise idea. You should always work out the cost of the worst case scenario and compare it to one that mitigates the damage. An example is a birthday party. Imagine you are short the balancing payment on a birthday bash you booked? If you cancel the whole thing it could end up costing you your deposit money and wrecking the day itself regardless, while approaching a reputable payday loan company like Wonga ZA for help is one option in an emergency it is far preferable to have your own contingency plans in place for emergencies.
Any budget starting point is the amount of income you have from wages, salary, trusts, rental income, maintenance, benefits or bonuses. You need to identify every single source of income you have and record it. If you are self-employed it may be a little harder to work out a budget, but a good tip is to review the last three month’s of bank statements and then take an average of what has come in over that period. This gives you a good starting point to work from if you find it hard to predict your income. More guidance of effective budgeting can be found here.
Working out your expenses means creating a comprehensive list of everything you spend money on. You can start by identifying essentials like housing costs, travel, food and utility bills. Then you can add in things that are perhaps not as essential like take-aways and entertainment costs. Once you separate these expenses you are in a better position to cut costs if your income is reduced suddenly or unexpectedly. If you have expenses that are quarterly, monthly and weekly, it helps to work out a monthly or a weekly expenses budget so it you pay 200 per quarter on electricity, you will find it beneficial to work out what this costs on a monthly basis. This way your expenses are much more manageable.
Once you have a full list of your expenses and income it is easy to see whether you need to be considering increasing income or decreasing what you spend on. Great ideas for increasing income include renting a room in your house out, or getting a weekend job. You can cut costs by making simple adjustments to your daily routine for example if you always eat out for lunch, you can save money by making a packed lunch and taking to to work every day.
Taking a loan out is an important financial decision that requires you to carefully consider your situation and, to some extent, be able to predict the future. Although no one can comprehensively guide you to the best deal, as ultimately the decision is yours, here are three key points to help you make up your mind when planning to borrow money from a bank or specialist loan company.
It’s important to weigh up interest rates properly and make the right calculations that break down the cost so the deal makes sense to you. It can vary dramatically, but larger loans generally have lower interest rates. In the same vein, you will often pay less interest if the repayment period is shorter. Always check the small print for penalties and focus on the Annual Percentage Rates (APRs) of interest charged rather than monthly interest as these are mainly advertised to trick you into thinking that rates are low. The lender should be happy to answer any questions about whether the APR varies or if it is fixed and if there are any additional fees.
Perhaps the main reason people are wary about taking out a loan is because of the risk it poses if, for some reason or another, the repayments are unable to be met. Loans can be greatly beneficial, not only to acquire what you want but also by improving your credit history if you uphold the contract of agreement. Assess how risky the loan arrangement may be by looking at your income and job stability as well as the terms and conditions of the offer. You can choose a secure or unsecure loan. In a way, an unsecure loan is less risky as it is not tied to your home or possessions. but failing to pay can result in your credit being blacklisted.
Depending on your earnings and how frequently you get paid, it’s important to arrange loan repayments at a frequency that suits you. This is simply to ensure that you can keep up with them. Once agreed, the repayment period is usually fixed and it is often the case that longer repayments will result in higher interest rates. Flexible loans are becoming more popular but the convenience of paying when it is best for you comes at the price of high interest. Just be sure to answer honestly to yourself and to your lender whether you can realistically afford to pay back the monthly amount they offer.
Consider the limitations that taking out a loan will cause you, such as cutting back on luxuries and vacations, as well as whether you will be squeezing the budget far too tight if you take one out. Be sure to speak to your lender immediately if you are running into trouble with paying back the money, as they’ll appreciate your open communication about the matter. At the end of the day it is best to shop around for many quotes and keep a close eye on your financial flow in order to handle your loan cleverly and efficiently.