Free Newsletter to Keep you Free From Broke!Name: Email: We respect your email privacyPowered by AWeber email marketing

When Does It Make Sense to Automate My Finances and How Do I Get Started?

When does it make sense to automate your finances?

Automating your finances is one way of simplifying your financial life.

When your automate your finances you use your bank, credit card, or service provider’s website to set up automatic transactions on your behalf.  You can automate paying your utility bills, paying your credit card, investing your retirement funds, and many other tasks.

Finance automation is often touted as one of the top ten things you should do to improve your finances.

While having your bills paid on time does help you save time and avoid late fees, completely automating your finances is foolish and nearly impossible to do.

How Automating Your Finances Improves Your Finances

Late fees.  Overdraft fees.  High interest rate penalties.  Missed payments.

All of these items are the result of mismanaging your finances.  Missing one payment can result in your interest rate on your credit card going sky high.  Missing the payment due date on any bill will automatically reward you with a late fee on top of what you already owed.

In short, mismanaged finances end up costing you thousands of dollars with all the fees and higher interest rates you pay.
Continue Reading

7 Reasons We Have Trouble Sticking to Our Budget

Reasons We Can't Stick to Our Budget

Every month, I diligently write out our budget and track how we spend our money. 

Most months we stay close to our target budget.  However, there are some months, especially the winter months when we have a number of expenses due at once, where we struggle to make ends meet.

I’m sure you’ve experienced this as well.

If you struggle with your budget, you’re not alone.  Turns out, there are many reasons why most of us spend more and save less than we should.

Here’s Why We Have So Much Trouble Sticking to Our Budget

Continue Reading

Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard – Review: 40k Bonus Miles, 2x Rewards, and More

air_travel_rewards

When you use a credit card wisely it’s a great tool to have in your pocket.  But it’s even better when you can earn some nice, juicy rewards that can help you travel!

That’s what the Barclaycard Arrival PlusTM World Elite MasterCard® does.

Stick around and I’ll show you why the Arrival Plus World Elite is aching to be part of your credit card tool set.  You’ll also see what’s it’s a great all-around travel rewards card.

The Barclaycard Arrival PlusTM World Elite MasterCard® - Rewards That Are Easy and Keep Coming Back

Continue Reading

Moving to One Income So A Spouse Can Take Care of the Kids – Your Guide

Moving to one income to take care of the kids.

While 60 years ago, one parent staying home to care for the children was the norm, today, having both parents work is the norm. 

According to Pew Research, “Roughly 60% of two-parent households with children under age 18 have two working parents.”  Many families have one parent stay home until all the kids are in school, and then both parents resume working.

Keep reading and we’ll show you if a) living on one income is good for you and b) how to go about preparing for it.

Your Guide to Switching to One Income So One Spouse Can Be a Stay-at-Home Parent

Continue Reading

The Best Online Discount Brokerages for Cheap Trades – Investing Doesn’t Need to Be Expensive

Consider this when opening a brokerage account

Do you recall the days when you needed to call up a stock broker in order to make a stock trade?

And you needed to make the trade in a “round lot” (you had to buy 100 shares)?  Did I just date myself? 

Thanks to the internet that’s no longer the case and it’s easy for anyone to invest in stocks with an online brokerage (like, you can do it on your smartphone easy).  And not only is it easy but it won’t cost you an arm and a leg to get started.

“So which account do I open,” you ask?

There are a number of places to go these days thanks to the rise of online trading and brokerages.  I want to make sure you find one that works well for you.

I’m going to tell you about some great brokerages but I want you to first understand what you should look for before you open up an online brokerage account.

Consider the Following When Opening a Brokerage Account

Continue Reading

Use Google Calendar To Pay Your Bills On Time

Set up Google Calendar for bill pay

Have you ever realized you had a bill sitting around that was due today?

Or worse, yesterday?

If you are lucky you can pay the bill online but that’s not always an option (I’ve found that some companies have a cut-off time).

There was a time when I had a lot of credit card debt.  Digging out of it was tough but what made it harder was paying late fees because I would miss the credit card due date by a few days or so.

There is just about nothing more frustrating than looking through your bills and realizing one was already past due!

I definitely needed a bill/pay calendar system that would work for me!

Keep reading and I’ll tell you about a few systems I’ve used to pay bills on time including how to set up one of my favorites — Google Calendar.

How to Set Up Google Calendar Reminders to Pay Your Bills on Time

Continue Reading

Do This: Save Money With a DIY Self-Reliance Mindset

Save money with a DIY self reliance mindset.

Although I live outside Chicago, our winters  in recent years have been decidedly mild. 

For example, in the 2012-2013 winter, by January 31st, we had only received 3.5 inches of snow TOTAL.  This year, winter was back with a vengeance.  By January 31st, 2014, we had received 48.5 inches total of snow for the winter.

Add in many days of sub-zero temperatures, and well, it’s been a rough winter.

When we had a 50 hour stretch of sub-zero temperatures (one of those days had a high of -16 degrees), I knew that we should let the water drip to avoid having our pipes freeze.  However, when I went to take a shower, the water continued to just drip even though it was turned to full strength.  I called a friend who told me the pipes were likely frozen.  My husband set up space heaters in the basement where the pipes are, and within 5 hours, our water was flowing again.

That night, I saw on the news that we weren’t alone.

Many, many people had burst pipes or pipes like ours.  I was surprised to see that some homeowners paid good money to have someone else come out to their houses and run a heater by their pipes to thaw them.

This situation just illustrates how far we’ve come from the do-it-yourself roots our grandparents and even parents had.  Now, we work hard at our jobs and call someone else to do everything for us.

Develop a Mindset of Self-Reliance and DIY and You Can Save Yourself a Lot of Money

Continue Reading

Free Newsletter to Keep you Free From Broke!Name: Email: We respect your email privacyPowered by AWeber email marketing