Link

RSS
Follow by Email
Facebook
Facebook
Google+
http://talkinmoney.org/2017/03/23/712/
YouTube
YouTube
PINTEREST
PINTEREST
LinkedIn

Student Loan Debt

Student loan debt is a big issue. It is the most common way of funding your college and graduate school education – but doing so has become a ‘Game of Loans’. And since money is my game, you’ll also note it’s my name…. Frank Money that is!…See what I did there?

Before you start to think that getting a student loan is like an alliance with the House Lannister, understanding what you are getting into is an important first step.

In the U.S., the total outstanding student loan debt is around $1.2 trillion dollars with the average student debt for a grad being around $33.000 (2014 figures).

Come off of graduation day with $33,000 in debt that begins to require monthly payments shortly thereafter can definitely take the wind out of your sails – and prevent you from being able to purchase other things you might want, like a car or home.

Perhaps the biggest question you need to ask yourself is what is the return on my investment for the education you are financing. Will the degree you earned ‘pay off’ in giving you enough income over your working life to afford paying off the loan  it required -and- prove you with enough remaining $$$ to actually live the life you want?

As a general rule – try to avoid student loans as much as possible. Look for other monies, some of which is available for little cost to you in scholarships.

It’s sometimes daunting to understand all the facets of the ‘Game of Loans’ – but taking steps to investigate the rules of the game will prevent you from ending up with the dragons.

April is National Financial Literacy Month, Detective Frank Money’s favorite month! To celebrate the importance of being financially literate, Detective Money is going to post financial literacy tips every day.

RSS
Follow by Email
Facebook
Facebook
Google+
http://talkinmoney.org/2017/04/24/student-loan-debt/
YouTube
YouTube
PINTEREST
PINTEREST
LinkedIn

What To Do About
Excessive Debt

Frank Money here – your very effective money detective….

If you have excessive debt, you should take a deep breath and realize you do have options.

Millennials in general have the lowest credit score and most problems managing their debt, compared to prior generations. But the good news is you have the lowest number of credit cards and lowest debt total compared to other generations.

However, the bad news is that you use credit cards a lot, and make a lot of late payments. Late payments mean lower credit scores.

Additionally, millennials tend to use costly alternative financial services, such as auto title loans, payday loans, pawnshops, rent-to-own loans and tax-refund advances.

Here are some steps you can do to help you get control of excessive debt:


1 – For credit cards, get a lower credit card interest rate as soon as you can – Call up your credit card company and ask for a lower rate.

2 – If you can’t make the minimum payments on time, call your credit card company and work out a payment plan.

3 – Allocate a larger portion of your income to reduce debt. This will be painful, but over time it will work.

4 – Limit your spending. If you don;t have a budget plan in place, now is the time. Limit your spending to only the essentials, and make paying off your debt the number one priority.

5 – Motivate yourself. Reach out to friends or relatives who have been through similar problems. This is a process, and it helps to have support during those low times.

Need more help? Then why not reach out to the NFCC (National  Foundation for Credit Counseling – the nations largest and longest-serving non-profit financial counseling organization.

http://www.nfcc.org/

So don’t fret the debt – instead take some steps to help yourself and sleep easier.

April is National Financial Literacy Month, Detective Frank Money’s favorite month! To celebrate the importance of being financially literate, Detective Money is going to post financial literacy tips every day.

RSS
Follow by Email
Facebook
Facebook
Google+
http://talkinmoney.org/2017/04/23/what-to-do-aboutexcessive-debt/
YouTube
YouTube
PINTEREST
PINTEREST
LinkedIn

Good Consumer Skills

You really should apply good consumer skills to your purchase decisions. How so you say?

Just like my bloodhound ‘Shamus’ would do, it really just takes an analytical, systematic approach to decision making. In fact, you can apply this to lots of things in life.

Well think about it, do you really want to go through life spending more than you have to for things you buy? Or what about paying higher fees for things people get for a lot less, or even for free?

Here’s a step-by-step approach that really helps:

1 – Consider the item, thing or service you want.

2 – Look at several options for each – Let’s say three different ones.

3 – Consider to alternatives and consequences of each option.

4 – Make your decision…go ahead, pick one!

5 – Analyze the results of your choice. Did it turn out the way you wanted? What could your of done differently for a better result?

Congratulations! Now that’s applying good consumer skills. It applies to buying a car, renting a house, purchasing a smart phone, even buying an ice cream cone! In the end, if you think carefully about each purchase, you could save yourself big bucks!

April is National Financial Literacy Month, Detective Frank Money’s favorite month! To celebrate the importance of being financially literate, Detective Money is going to post financial literacy tips every day.

RSS
Follow by Email
Facebook
Facebook
Google+
http://talkinmoney.org/2017/04/22/good-consumer-skills/
YouTube
YouTube
PINTEREST
PINTEREST
LinkedIn

Play Budget Mania!

Frank Money here – I find that Money is never around when you need it…and you never need it when it’s around. Understanding your spending and savings with a budget is the best way to get control of your money!

It’s time for Budget-Mania! Where everyone can learn about keeping a budget for their spending and saving. After all, if you don’t have a plan then good-bye budget and hello chaos!

Click here and download this PDF form to be on your way to your first budget!

As you can see by this form it’s really quite simple, but like everything else in life, you got to stick with it in order to succeed. It’s a game of pluses and minuses. Income, such as your take home pay from your job, is a plus. Your parents give you money for your birthday, plus. As for the minuses, that’s all of your expenses from car repairs to your monthly rent, from paying your health insurance to shopping for groceries.

Add up all of your expenses and subtract it from your income and you are well on your way to winning at Budget-Mania! That’s because you have a plan and that information will help keep you out of spiraling debt.

As my old friend Ben Franklin always said, “An investment in knowledge pays the best interest”.

April is National Financial Literacy Month, Detective Frank Money’s favorite month! To celebrate the importance of being financially literate, Detective Money is going to post financial literacy tips every day.

RSS
Follow by Email
Facebook
Facebook
Google+
http://talkinmoney.org/2017/04/21/play-budget-mania/
YouTube
YouTube
PINTEREST
PINTEREST
LinkedIn

On The Subject Of Credit

All right all you spenders, there’s a subject near and dear to me and that’s on the subject of credit. Now you may be thinking to yourself that poor old Frank Money has no life. That may be true but I’m not poor and I’m not in debt, but thinking about the different kinds of debt can really knock me off my feet.

There are costs and benefits for carrying different types of debt. Some credit accounts are viewed more favorably by lenders than others but all require the ability to repay your debts in a timely manner. For example, there’s non-revolving credit like taking out a mortgage that’s paid in installments. Revolving credit deals with credit cards and fluctuates how much you pay each month.

Believe it or not carrying debt and paying it off monthly can raise your credit scores because it clearly shows how you manage your finances. Just remember the higher your credit score the better you can negotiate lower credit rates.

April is National Financial Literacy Month, Detective Frank Money’s favorite month! To celebrate the importance of being financially literate, Detective Money is going to post financial literacy tips every day.

RSS
Follow by Email
Facebook
Facebook
Google+
http://talkinmoney.org/2017/04/20/on-the-subject-of-credit/
YouTube
YouTube
PINTEREST
PINTEREST
LinkedIn

Fiduciary

Today’s secret word – Fiduciary!

Now as words go, this detective finds that word to be a long…and maybe a little intimidating.

But when it comes to your finances, fiduciary is your friend! The definition of the word is involving TRUST, especially to the relationship of a trustee and a beneficiary.”

In my line of work, trust is a big deal! In the world of money and financing, it establishes how the relationship between you and a financial advisor or institution works.

Here’s a case – Mark wanted to put the money he is saving in his IRA for retirement in a mutual fund. He asked a financial advisor for advice on which fund to purchase. The advisor gave him a couple of choices, but when Mark investigated the funds closer, he discovered that the funds carried high fees. Which would mean, he might make less on his investment over time.

Now there was nothing wrong with the funds the financial advisor recommended, but most likely the reason he recommended them was because the advisor would profit from the sale of the mutual fund to Mark – probably in the form of a commission. Which means that the advisor has some ‘skin in the game’ when it comes to selling something to Mark. The advisor is working in both his own and Mark’s interests – and just so everyone understands, there is nothing illegal about this, in fact, it’s quite common.

But if Mark had an advisor with a FIDUCIARY DUTY on his behalf, that advisor would be required to ONLY act in Mark’s best interests.

A fiduciary is expected to manage the assets FULLY for the benefit of the other person rather than for his or her own profit.

TRUST me, take this detective’s advice – when you are asking for financial advise, also ask whether the advise comes with a FIDUCIARY DUTY,

April is National Financial Literacy Month, Detective Frank Money’s favorite month! To celebrate the importance of being financially literate, Detective Money is going to post financial literacy tips every day.

RSS
Follow by Email
Facebook
Facebook
Google+
http://talkinmoney.org/2017/04/19/fiduciary/
YouTube
YouTube
PINTEREST
PINTEREST
LinkedIn

Bad Credit Will Cost You

Frank Money here, your financial detective trying to save you money. Ok, listen up all you financial hotdogs out there who don’t pay attention to their credit scores. I’m about to give a lesson in world of hard knocks. Let’s cut right to the chase, bad credit will cost you money. If you’re planning to purchase large ticket items like a mortgage, car loan or even another credit card, you’re going to pay a lot more.

Your credit score under FICO ranges from 300 to 850, with the highest being the best score. I’m guessing anything under 620, you’re going to have trouble even being considered with some purchases without paying extra for insurance of payment.

So pay off your credit cards and get rid of the ones you don’t need. Don’t be late with any of your loan payments, and don’t be afraid to check your credit report, it does not affect your score. It will take a couple of years to build your credit back up to a decent score but it’ll be worth it and that’s coming straight from Frank Money.

April is National Financial Literacy Month, Detective Frank Money’s favorite month! To celebrate the importance of being financially literate, Detective Money is going to post financial literacy tips every day.

RSS
Follow by Email
Facebook
Facebook
Google+
http://talkinmoney.org/2017/04/18/bad-credit-will-cost-you/
YouTube
YouTube
PINTEREST
PINTEREST
LinkedIn

Tomorrow Is Tax Day

Tax day always seems to be a day of chaos and dread for taxpayers. We’ve all seen traffic jams and long lines at local Post Offices with last minute taxes held tightly in their hands hoping to get their taxes sent out on time. In 2017, tax day is actually tomorrow, April 18th!

Other than having your taxes prepared sooner there are other options than racing to the Post Office. Need more time to prepare your federal tax return? If you are not able to file your federal individual income tax return by the due date, you may be able to get an automatic 6-month extension of time to file. But to do so, you’ll need to not owe anymore income tax for last year. Best to check with the IRS for the proper forms and understand that there’s a nominal fee on the amount that’s being filed.

Also, don’t forget you can e-file your federal taxes right from your computer. It’s quick, easy and gives you immediate confirmation that Uncle Sam has happily gathered in your taxes.

April is National Financial Literacy Month, Detective Frank Money’s favorite month! To celebrate the importance of being financially literate, Detective Money is going to post financial literacy tips every day.

RSS
Follow by Email
Facebook
Facebook
Google+
http://talkinmoney.org/2017/04/17/tomorrow-is-tax-day/
YouTube
YouTube
PINTEREST
PINTEREST
LinkedIn

Mind Blown!

We’ve all heard and read a thousand times how we should save on a regular basis and the younger you start the more we’ll have when getting closer to retirement. But as sure as the sun rises there will always be something that happens in your life that will make it difficult for you to part with your money to put into savings. That’s why every paycheck you should have a set portion of your salary automatically deposited into your savings account.

I’ve done the detective work on this and the later you wait to start saving, even a year or two, could mean the difference of up to $200,000 or more! Remember compounding interest? Over time your money will make more money for you. Mind blown!

In fact, if you want to have what we financial literacy fans call ‘fun’ here’s a link to the government’s Securities and Exchange Commission’s handy, dandy Compounded Interest Calculator. GO ahead, plug some numbers in, step back, and get ready to be surprised!

https://www.investor.gov/tools/calculators/compound-interest-calculator

Good old Benjamin Franklin once said: “An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.” So it’s up to you to be a wise investor with your savings.

April is National Financial Literacy Month, Detective Frank Money’s favorite month! To celebrate the importance of being financially literate, Detective Money is going to post financial literacy tips every day.

RSS
Follow by Email
Facebook
Facebook
Google+
http://talkinmoney.org/2017/04/16/mind-blown/
YouTube
YouTube
PINTEREST
PINTEREST
LinkedIn

April 15th

It’s Tax Day!

Surprise, no it’s not!

This year it’s on Tuesday, April 18th! Thats because of Emancipation Day in Washington D.C. (observed on the weekday closest to April 16), when April 15 falls on a Friday, tax returns are due the following Monday; when April 15 falls on a Saturday or Sunday, tax returns are due the following Tuesday.

If you have filed your taxes and signed on the dotted line, then good for you! If this is your first time, it’s not that far-fetched that you have joined society, contributed to keeping the wheels oiled and turning so our country can keep moving forward. Okay, sometimes I can get carried away.

With your return due next Tuesday, we thought we would share another date with you – Tax Freedom Day – This is the day of the year where everything made up to that date goes to Uncle Sam, and after that date, everything you make is yours. In the United States, it is annually calculated by the Tax Foundation, a Washington, D.C.-based tax research organization. In the U.S., Tax Freedom Day for 2015 was April 24, for a total average effective tax rate of 31 percent of the nation’s income. The latest that Tax Freedom Day has occurred was May 1 in 2000. In 1900, Tax Freedom Day arrived January 22, for an effective average total tax rate of 5.9 percent of the nation’s income.

Tax Freedom Day for 2017 is April 24th! Woo Hoo!

April is National Financial Literacy Month, Detective Frank Money’s favorite month! To celebrate the importance of being financially literate, Detective Money is going to post financial literacy tips every day.

As for the second half of the month of April, each day we’ll be doing the detective work on lots of financial literacy information such as, just what are the taxes taken out of you paycheck, your credit and the benefits of keeping it at a high number, keeping on track using a budget and a lot more.

RSS
Follow by Email
Facebook
Facebook
Google+
http://talkinmoney.org/2017/04/15/april-15th/
YouTube
YouTube
PINTEREST
PINTEREST
LinkedIn