Easy Ways to Boost Your Savings Account

by Sean Bryant on March 24, 2015

Boost Your Savings Account

Being disciplined and making regular contributions to your savings account can be a challenge at the best of times. But, without a dedicated approach, you can pretty much assure that you’ll spend exactly what you earn and end up living paycheck to paycheck. Fortunately, saving money isn’t rocket science, and there are a number of proven strategies both singles and couples can take to boost their savings account and improve their financial position. If becoming more financially secure is a priority for 2015, read on for some easy ways to boost your savings.

Create a Detailed Budget

If you haven’t already done so, it’s essential to create a budget that accounts for all your monthly income and expenses. Only when you can clearly see where all your money is going can you determine where expenses can be cut and other ways savings can be made. Often, these include monthly bills or subscriptions that may not be necessary or where a better deal could be available. A budget is also useful as it will give you a clearer picture of your spending habits and provide insights on financial behaviors that may need to be changed.

Investigate Additional Revenue Streams

If the idea of reining in your spending seems impossible, the only other solution is to increase your income. It might sound daunting, but there are many ways to achieve this. A second job or working longer hours is the most obvious way to bring in more bacon. Many people, however, are turning their hobbies into sources of revenue. For example, if you are crafty, making jewelry, knitwear, or woodwork can allow you to sell these at a market stall or online. For keen writers, a blog with a loyal following can bring in revenue from online advertising. And for those with an interest in investing, it’s possible to earn money by trading on the foreign exchange market after undertaking a course through a reputable provider such as Learn To Trade. These are all examples of real life ways where people with passions have converted their interests into income.

Set up Direct Deposit and a Term Deposit Account

It’s worth allocating a portion of each pay you receive to be directly deposited into a separate savings account that is not linked to your main account. This will make the money more difficult to access and make you, as the account holder, think twice before making a withdrawal. It is also a good idea to set up a term deposit account that rewards you for making no withdrawals within a set period and also offers more generous interest rates.

Plan Your Meals

Food is one of the biggest areas where people spend more than they need to. Between takeaway breakfasts, takeaway coffee five times a week, work lunches, and dining out with friends, people tend to spend a lot of cash on eating. Many people also waste the food they purchase from the supermarket by not eating it before it expires. Try bringing your own lunch to work and take advantage of your workplace’s free coffee. A weekly meal plan and writing a shopping list will help you buy only what you need and minimize wastage.

While saving can be hard, the good news is that, ultimately, we do have significant control over how much we spend. There are many creative ways to reduce spending, boost revenue, and increase the amount you can contribute to your savings account, so why not try some of the strategies mentioned above? If you have other easy ways to boost your savings account, please leave your tips in a comment below.

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Business with Big Dreams and a Small Budget

by Sean Bryant on March 16, 2015

Business With Big Dreams and a small budget

One of the most difficult parts of being an entrepreneur is the never-ending need for cash. You have your idea locked in place, a solid team put together and the sky seems to be the limit – if only you had the means to pay for it all. You may chose to bootstrap your business, crowdfund it or rely on investors. Sometimes all you need to do is revisit your budget in order to get on the right track. Read on for a few ideas.

Start with the Non-Negotiables

Personal finance expert Dave Ramsey created a series of baby steps that individuals and families can take in order to take control of their money. While his steps are geared toward personal finance, some of the same concepts still apply to business. Make the first part of your budget the things you can’t survive without like food, utilities and shelter. With your small business, do likewise and think of what’s essential for survival first.

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Target REDcard – Save 5% Off Your Target Purchase

by Sean Bryant on March 13, 2015

Target REDcard

My wife and I love to shop at Target.  The prices are great and the quality is even better.  We are always looking for a way to save even more money and that is where the Target REDcard comes into play.

We use the debit card version which works just like a check by drawing the money for your purchases right out of your checking account.  The nice this is that you will save 5% off your entire purchase.  This is on top of any coupons that you might use.  You will also receive free shipping when you shop on Target.com and you will receive an extra 30 days to make returns.

Biggest thing to remember is that there is no annual fee and they do not run a hard inquiry on your credit for the debit card version.

Sign up for a Target REDcard

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Top 10 Retirement Planning Mistakes to Avoid

by Scott Sery on March 11, 2015

Retirement Planning Mistakes

Retirement is the ultimate goal for nearly every person working. However, for many that goal seems so distant and unattainable. The reason is because there are a number of working parts that go into your goals, and most people don’t want to take the time to worry about them. This often leads people to making some retirement planning mistakes; mistakes that cost them thousands of dollars and take years to remedy. Here are the top 10 retirement planning mistakes, and how to avoid them.

#1. Failure to Plan

I debated where to put this, but ultimately it comes first. If you don’t plan for retirement, there is no way to get there other than sheer luck. The good news is that developing a plan is incredibly simple. Most financial advisors will help you build a plan for free. The way they get paid is you buy your insurances and investments through them.

#2. Relying on Social Security

This is not to say Social Security is going away. It’s not even to say that it won’t pay out much. It is to say that Social Security was never meant to be your sole source of retirement income, but rather as a starting point. You need additional investments and savings (like a 401k, IRA, Roth IRA, or non-qualified accounts) to meet your goals.

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3 Ways Broadway Gives Back to the Community

by Sean Bryant on March 6, 2015

broadway

What comes to your mind when you think of Broadway? Shows, musicals, New York City, drama, excitement? Bright lights and showstoppers are commonly associated with Broadway shows, but what you may not think of is the impact Broadway has on the community. Purchasing Broadway tickets and experiencing the performing arts are also philanthropic initiatives. Check out how Broadway gives back to the community in the following three ways.

Classical Action by Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS

This Broadway organization takes advantage of the talent in its community and resources to hold fundraising events and raise money for the battle against HIV/AIDS. Classical Action: Performing Arts Against AIDS (a program of Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS) was founded in 1993 and is one of the largest non-profit AIDS fundraising organizations in the country. The organization’s mission is to serve people who are in need of “life-saving medications, health care, counseling, nutritious meals and emergency financial assistance,” according to its website.

Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS also makes and awards grants to more than 400 nationwide AIDS and family service organizations. Its $35,000 grant helped the Boston-based company Community Servings deliver 9,600 meals a week to terminally-ill people who were confined to their homes. BC/EFA also raised more than 250 million dollars for people with AIDS (and other critical illnesses) who were in need of necessary services.
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8 Things to Know About Refinancing Student Loans

March 4, 2015
Refinancing Student Loans

Ideally, you’ll never need to refinance, but in reality, life happens. If you find yourself struggling to pay back federal or private student loans, refinancing may be an excellent option for you. Much like the research you did before applying for assistance in the beginning; there are several things you need to know before considering […]

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How Do I Forecast Profits for My Business?

March 2, 2015
Forecasting Profits

When planning to forecast your income for the next year, you must skip all the dreams existing in your mind and immerse in clear commercial calculations. It doesn’t matter if you are a beginner or an experienced business owner, forecasting is a must-do. Real entrepreneurs who have already achieved commercial heights never rely on luck […]

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