Tag: Personal Finance

The Net Worth Budget

You know that you need to budget, save, and pay off debt. Your parents, your teachers, your friend who is a financial advisor, and the morning news show you watch have all told you so. You made a list of bills and expenses and subtracted them from your income, figured out how much you had left, and maybe put some of that into your savings account every month. You’ve been doing that for awhile and don’t seem to be getting anywhere.┬áThe savings always gets spent, or somehow the money never makes it into savings in the first place. Something always comes up. The student loan debt seems like it is never going to go away, and saving up to buy a house is never going to happen. It’s time to look at a new approach to budgeting. Continue reading “The Net Worth Budget”

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Budget Breakers

I have been wanting to put this lesson together for awhile. I created an annuity spreadsheet to calculate the long-term impact of various spending habits. What would your retirement income look like if you brewed your coffee at home instead of going to Starbucks or drove a sedan instead of an SUV? When you replace small spending habits over a 30 year period and earn investment returns on the savings, the difference can be tens and even hundreds of thousands of dollars. Check it out:

Book Review: Save, Spend, Invest, Give

Save Spend Invest GiveIn Save, Spend, Invest, Give, Daniel Pecaut shares his expertise on personal finance as the CEO of an investment firm for over 30 years. Pecaut is a value investor inspired by value gurus like Warren Buffett and John Templeton. However, this is not so much a value investing guide as it is an inspirational personal finance guide. Continue reading “Book Review: Save, Spend, Invest, Give”

How to Start a Retirement Fund with Almost No Money

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Photo by Skitterphoto on Pexels.com

Many people I talk to want to do a better job of saving for retirement but don’t know where to begin. Maybe their employer offers a 401(k), but they don’t feel like it’s enough, or maybe they have no 401(k) at all and desperately need to get something started.

Many people also don’t have much money to get started with. They might want to start investing as little as $20 per month. The fee structures of mutual funds and the transaction fees brokers have for purchasing securities can make investing small amounts of money at a time very impractical, but that aspect of the investment industry is changing, and there are some new opportunities for small-time investing that weren’t there only a few years ago. Continue reading “How to Start a Retirement Fund with Almost No Money”

Book Review: The Total Money Makeover

Total Money MakeoverDave Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover is not a perfect system, nor is this a perfect book, but it is the reality check that tens of thousands of American consumers need. After one filters out the unhelpful testimonials and the plugs for his radio show, this book a lot of good common sense about finances.

Ramsey rightly compares personal finance to personal health. Most of it is common sense, but as he says, it is 20% knowledge and 80% behavior. Ramsey’s system is all about correcting behavior. There are some methods that are more efficient than Ramsey’s but that offer too many temptations that many people can’t handle. While Ramsey encourages you to follow his system strictly, he is forthcoming about the arguments against everything he says. This is an important reason why I recommend this book.

Some people need this system and need to follow it strictly to fix their finances. Some people are already doing okay and can keep doing what they are doing. I would say that this program is not for everyone, but everyone should read it to make sure. It could be the difference between becoming a millionaire and going bankrupt. Even if you don’t use it all, there is plenty of good information and some solid reality checks in here for everyone, even those who already know a lot about finance and are financially successful.

Is Going Back to School Worth the Cost?

people-woman-coffee-meeting.jpgWhether or not to continue one’s education is one of the top questions in personal finance. Even for financial experts, it is not an easy decision. However, there are some great ideas and some great information out there that can help you make the best choice for you. It may be easier than you think. Continue reading “Is Going Back to School Worth the Cost?”