The Battle of the Budget Between Spouses

According to an article I recently read on Yahoo!, 4 out of 5 divorcees have attributed finances as one of the reasons for the break-up. To be honest, I had to re-read this stat to fully understand. I mean, I knew that finances were one of the leading causes of divorce, but 80%? That’s definitely larger than I would have expected.

This article caused me to think about the different financial relationships out there. Why is it that so many couples can’t agree on the finances? You may have heard of the different personality types: sanguine, choleric, melancholy, and phlegmatic (these 4 are also described as influential, dominant, conscientious, and steady, respectively). Well, in conjunction with the personalities, I think each of us also hold a financial characteristic – we are either a spender or a saver.

What is your tendency? If you enjoy keeping cash in your wallet, enjoy . . . → Read More: The Battle of the Budget Between Spouses

Under the Radar Millionaires

I once heard a story about great wealth from an unlikely source. A man had passed away and had delegated a substantial amount of money to local charities in the area; it totaled to over a million dollars! This man was not the CEO of a company, nor was he a doctor or lawyer. Actually, he most likely never made more than $50,000 a year! This man was a janitor.

News of this janitor’s great wealth spread rapidly and people wondered, “How could this man possibly have had such great wealth? He must have received a great inheritance.” Not so. This man did not receive an inheritance. He merely put into practice the teaching of many financial planners: Begin investing early, be consistent, and watch your investment grow.

There is another great story I would like to share with you today, and you can read all about it on her . . . → Read More: Under the Radar Millionaires

Buy One, Get One Free; Is it Really a Bargain?

My wife calls me “cheap”, but I’m just a man that loves a good bargain. If there’s a way for me to save money on groceries, I’ll jump at the opportunity. If I spend less on the essentials, that means I can throw some more money at our debts and we can start living our dream lifestyle even sooner than we had originally planned. So, yes, I’ll certainly be cheap in the present so that I can live the dream in our near future.

Lately, I have been intrigued by coupon clipping. I saw a news story about a woman that saves nearly 90% on her groceries. When I witnessed that story, I immediately wanted to begin clipping coupons and saving like the pros. In my first outing, I saved 29%. It wasn’t nearly the savings that I had hoped for, but I was still determined to learn the art . . . → Read More: Buy One, Get One Free; Is it Really a Bargain?

Don’t Waste Your Money

Why is it that there are so many people without a substantial savings account? Most of the time, it’s simply a lack of budgeting. They aren’t bad people, and they aren’t spending their money on the latest gadgets, but yet, those dollars are just slipping from their fingers. Where is it all going?

Take Note of Your Daily Spending

A quarter here, a couple bucks there. It doesn’t seem like a big deal until we look at how little we have left at the end of the month. At this point, a couple might write down all of their expenses to try to figure out where it all went, but without the proper receipts, they are often $300 to $500 short! All the money was going to the little expenses that are never recorded!

What are Those Little Things?

Every morning, what do most of us do? We stop by . . . → Read More: Don’t Waste Your Money

Important Tip For Buying a House; Don’t Become House Poor!

The housing market has taken an amazing journey in the past 15 years or so. In the mid-90s, home prices were reasonable, but they were on the rise. In fact, the value of houses increased over 10% per year in most areas, and showed no indication of slowing down, that is, until the year 2006. Home prices were at an all-time high and investors were still buying in because of the historical rise in value, but suddenly the value began to plummet, leaving many people upside-down in their mortgage (they owed more than the house was worth).

Do you know why this decline happened? Two reasons: The greed of the bank, and the greed of those that were purchasing the homes. The bank was making great money from the loans that they provided, so why not give people more money? And, those that were borrowing either borrowed more than they . . . → Read More: Important Tip For Buying a House; Don’t Become House Poor!

Financial Erosion, Are You Starting to Notice?

Erosion is defined by as ‘the process by which the surface of the earth is worn away by the action of water, glaciers, winds, waves, etc.’ As we all know, erosion occurs every day, but it can take a hundred years before anyone notices it’s happening.

I found a perfect example of erosion online. A large rock jutted out of the water at Nye Beach in Newport, Oregon. They called it, “Jump-off Joe”. If you follow the link, you can see the pictures of good ‘ol “Jump-off Joe”; the first photo was taken in 1890 where the large rock is shown in its full glory. Then, as the pictures continue (in increments of 20 years), the large rock slowly dwindles to a few pebbles scattered on the beach a hundred years later. Erosion is certainly an amazing occurrence. Without reviewing the photos though, I don’t think anyone would have . . . → Read More: Financial Erosion, Are You Starting to Notice?

Get Out of Debt, How To Get Rid of Your Car Loan

There are a lot of people that would love to be debt free in our world today, but rather than visualizing how great it will be once that debt is lifted off their shoulders, they find themselves staring at the bills, unable to see a way out. They don’t know where to take that first step.

Baby Step Out of Debt

You have no savings, no extra cash flow, and there is no sign of a wage increase – you are stuck, and you have no idea how you are going to dig yourself out. I agree that this situation seems hopeless, but you’re going to have to face this situation sooner or later, right? So, let’s face it right now and baby step our way out of debt.

The Major Stumbling Block

Most individuals are willing to have a garage sale in order to get their debt snowball rolling, . . . → Read More: Get Out of Debt, How To Get Rid of Your Car Loan

Watch Out! Here Comes Black Friday!

I don’t know about you, but I love Black Friday! I have great memories of my family finishing up the Thanksgiving dinner and hauling out all the sale papers, looking for the great deals we were going to scope out the next morning. Even if I didn’t buy anything, I still loved the adventure of waking up hours before the sunrise and standing in line outside of the local Target. I know most of you probably hate standing in the cold and can’t wait to get back home so that you can warm up, but I was with my family, so I loved it.

I have since moved away from my hometown and now live in the great state of Florida. Even though the Black Friday experience is still not quite the same as years past, I still love it! I love looking through the sale papers and finding that . . . → Read More: Watch Out! Here Comes Black Friday!

Could a Homeless Man Have a Higher Net Worth Than You?

My wife and I were driving in to work this morning, and we witnessed a scene that has become very familiar. As we were waiting to turn left on N. Military Trail, a scraggly man, approximately 45 years of age, slowly walked the median as he held a water bottle in one hand and a sign that read, “Ice Cold Water, $1.00” in the other. Based on the man’s clothing and cleanliness (or lack thereof), I assumed that he was homeless.

On average, I would say that this man makes $10 an hour with his water bottle sales. He most likely has no home and has very few possessions. Because he has no occupation and lacks many of the toys that we consider essentials, we often feel that we are ‘above’ him, but are we really?

Many of the individuals I work with are completely enamored with stuff. If you’ve . . . → Read More: Could a Homeless Man Have a Higher Net Worth Than You?

Get on the Same Financial Page As Your Spouse

If you are married, you might know this topic all too well, yet you still have no idea how to successfully agree on savings and expenses with your spouse form day to day. Let me be the first to tell you that I do not have all the answers. I’ve been married for a little over a year and my wife and I are just starting to understand how to talk about a budget and not end up on separate ends of the house after we’ve finished! However, through trial and error and an abundance of discussions, I think we may be on to something.

Based on what I’ve witnessed from our friends and ourselves, men and women can both spend frivolously, but they do it in an entirely different manner. My best friend Bill (not his real name) and his wife Melinda (also not her real name) are a . . . → Read More: Get on the Same Financial Page As Your Spouse