But with all the hacks, scams, and fraud we’re seeing as of late, I get a lot of questions around the safety of debit cards. If debit isn’t feeling like a good fit for you, here are some strategies to make your credit card feel more like a debit card. How can we make sure we’re using our credit cards in the most responsible way?
Many people love using a debit card rather than a credit card because it’s clear and simple. At any given time, you can look and know exactly how much money you have available. You don’t have to wait until the end of the payment period, and you can’t spend money you don’t have.
Recently, I’ve been getting more and more questions about whether or not it’s safe to use debit cards with so much fraud, skimming, hacks, and scams going on. What are the risks we take on by using our debit cards and how would we handle the fall out?
Weddings are expensive. In 2018, the average cost of being a bridesmaid was $1,500. When you add up the cost of the travel, gifts, bachelorette party, and dress—and multiply it across multiple friends -that is a huge chunk of change.
These are big expenses that can hit all in one paycheck and make cash flow tight. If you’re feeling the financial hangover from a banging wedding season, we’ve got you covered with seven steps to recover and plan to make the next wedding season go a whole lot more smoothly.
If paying for your child’s college education is one of your financial goals (and even if it’s not), you’ve probably heard you should start saving in a 529 plan. Here’s the lowdown on 529 plans - what they are, their benefits, their potential downsides, and how much you (generally) want to be putting aside for your child’s (or future child’s) education.
We don’t typically associate money with parties but I’m telling you, it’s a worthwhile association to make.
One of the reasons we don’t make the progress we want in our financial lives is because our financial to-do list continues to get put on the back burner. We have busy lives so when we don’t create the time for something (like dealing with our finances), the calendar fills up and we continue to not have time. It’s a vicious cycle.
A great way to end this unfulfilling cycle and improve our relationship with our money is to have a money party. A money party is time we set aside to have a fun date with our finances. Here’s how to have one.
There are expenses in life we can’t plan for and that’s why we have a rainy-day fund. But there are also many expenses that we can plan for and just don’t. The holidays are a perfect example. They come around every year and yet almost half of us get stressed out about money around the holidays.
The good news is, we can start planning for them. The sooner we start planning for them each year, the less pain we’ll feel financially.
Here’s a step by step plan to start saving for the holidays (or any other larger expense).
One of the jargon phrases that often gets thrown around in the personal finance world is net worth. Sometimes it’s not mentioned explicitly but when someone says the word “millionaire” or “billionaire,” they are referring to someone’s net worth.
So how do we calculate our net worth? It’s actually a very simple equation - it’s a total of what we own minus a total of what we owe. I’ve put together a Net Worth Tracker to make it as easy as possible for you to calculate your net worth and keep track of it going forward. You can also create your own spreadsheet or just write it down - whatever is easiest for you.
A rainy day fund provides us with a lot more than cash in case of an emergency. It gives us freedom to make choices, take risks, and have peace of mind, and it leaves space for creativity.
For most of us, a rainy day fund is the first savings goal on our list. It protects us in case something unexpected comes up so we don’t have to put it on a credit card (and pay high interest rates) or borrow from elsewhere.
Despite the practicality of a rainy day fund, so few of us have them. How do I know? The average American has less than $400 saved, at any age. That means the average Amercian has very little to no rainy day fund.
Here’s what you need to know to get started.
How we traditionally set up spending plans doesn’t work because we aren’t accounting for the big infrequent expenses in our lives. Yes, there are things we can’t plan for (and that’s why we have our rainy day fund) but most of these expenses are things we know about or even things that happen every single year.
Why is this a problem? Not only does this way of spending keep us from planning and saving the way we want, it also makes our financial lives much more stressful. If I have to make a big expense in any given month, cash will be really tight and I’ll have to put the expenses on a credit card or pull money from savings. I have to spend the next month recovering (until another expense comes up!).
The good news is, I am excited to share a tried and true system to stop this spending and saving rollercoaster. Once you take the time to set it up, it will do the work for you and take the stress out of these larger more irregular expenses.
We often make things harder than they need to be, especially when it comes to our finances. I’m guilty of this myself! I used to have a million bank accounts with a handful of bills coming out of each. I had a big blob of savings that was used for a variety of things. Very little was automated outside of my 401(k), and that even had some room for improvement.
To make our lives easier and less stressful, we can use automation to our advantage. Here are five ways you can automate your finances to reach your financial goals more quickly and easily.