overspending http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/196/all en-US 3 Mistakes That Make a Bad Credit Situation Worse http://www.wisebread.com/3-mistakes-that-make-a-bad-credit-situation-worse <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/3-mistakes-that-make-a-bad-credit-situation-worse" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/young_couple_in_bad_financial_situation.jpg" alt="Young couple in bad financial situation" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>While bad credit isn't an indictment of a person's character, it can certainly be a struggle in today's economy. Those with bad credit know that financial life becomes more challenging and can be more expensive in general.</p> <p>Your credit is officially bad if you're one of 68 million Americans with a FICO score that hovers near 600 or below. The good news is there are practical steps people can take to improve their credit scores. Paying your bills on time and working diligently to pay off debts are good ways to start.</p> <p>But people with bad credit need to, above all else, be patient. Falling into the lure of quick fixes can lead to the following mistakes and compound your problem of poor credit. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-improve-your-credit-score-fast?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Ways to Improve Your Credit Score Fast</a>)</p> <h2>1. Falling for debt relief or credit repair scams</h2> <p>The Federal Trade Commission released a survey in 2013 showing that of the 25 million people victimized by fraud, an estimated 1.5 million and 1.7 million Americans were scammed by debt relief or credit repair scams, respectively.</p> <p>Often the disreputable agencies behind these scams prey on people in dire financial circumstances by promising overnight fixes and charging large sums of money upfront before any work has been completed &mdash; both of which are illegal.</p> <p>The FTC warns consumers to avoid working with any debt relief or credit repair agency that sets off red flags. Notable warning signs include a company that:</p> <ul> <li> <p>Insists you pay money upfront to do any work on your behalf.</p> </li> <li> <p>Requires that you don't contact the credit reporting companies directly.</p> </li> <li> <p>Suggests you dispute accurate information on your credit report.</p> </li> <li> <p>Tells you to falsify any information on your applications for credit or a loan.</p> </li> <li> <p>Will not explain your legal rights when explaining their services.</p> </li> </ul> <p>Cleaning up your credit will be the result of improved financial habits like paying your monthly bills in a timely manner and making more than the minimum payments. These improved habits will need to be consistent over a period of time. Knowing this will help those with poor credit resist the temptation to seek quick fixes and be taken advantage of by predators. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-spot-a-credit-repair-scam?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Spot a Credit Repair Scam</a>)</p> <h2>2. Not learning how to use credit responsibly</h2> <p>It's understandable that 68 million Americans fall into the poor credit bucket. But, your story doesn't need to stop there. Those with poor credit must take the initiative to educate themselves about the benefits of good credit and to learn what concrete steps are needed to fix their credit.</p> <p>The largest factors that make up your credit score are payment history (35 percent) and how much you owe (30 percent). Again, paying on time and paying down your balances is the best thing you can do to improve your credit score.</p> <p>If you prefer to work with a professional, opt for nonprofit credit counselors. To ensure you are working with a reputable agency:</p> <ul> <li> <p>Locate a local service from associations like the <a href="https://www.nfcc.org/" target="_blank">National Foundation for Credit Counseling</a>.</p> </li> <li> <p>Check with your state's attorney general and the FTC to ensure there are no complaints or pending regulatory action against the agency. While a complaint doesn't necessarily signify a fraudulent agency, do your own research.</p> </li> <li> <p>Make sure you understand what services the counselor performs and know your rights as a consumer before you sign any agreements. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-signs-it-s-time-to-see-a-credit-counselor?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Signs It's Time to See a Credit Counselor</a>)</p> </li> </ul> <h2>3. Avoiding the problem and hoping that things will get better</h2> <p>This by far is the worst action someone with poor credit can take. Problems neglected will only get progressively worse and cost more time and energy to address in the future &mdash; when avoiding them is no longer an option. Whether you face a lawsuit, a wage garnishment, or are eventually forced to file bankruptcy, financial issues that have resulted in poor credit will eventually bubble up to the top of your must-do list.</p> <p>It's best to contact your creditors directly if you have trouble paying. Set up a payment arrangement or request a change in the terms of your payment agreement. Changing the due date and requesting an interest rate reduction are simple requests that can often be addressed by customer service representatives. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-negotiate-credit-card-debt?ref=seealso" target="_blank">4 Ways to Negotiate Credit Card Debt</a>)</p> <p>Know that burying your head in the sand will not help and is an unproductive mistake that people with bad credit make. Work with the creditor involved or a reputable credit counselor to arrange a workable solution. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-rebuild-your-credit-in-8-simple-steps?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Rebuild Your Credit in 8 Simple Steps</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F3-mistakes-that-make-a-bad-credit-situation-worse&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F3%2520Mistakes%2520That%2520Make%2520a%2520Bad%2520Credit%2520Situation%2520Worse.jpg&amp;description=3%20Mistakes%20That%20Make%20a%20Bad%20Credit%20Situation%20Worse"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/3%20Mistakes%20That%20Make%20a%20Bad%20Credit%20Situation%20Worse.jpg" alt="3 Mistakes That Make a Bad Credit Situation Worse" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/toni-husbands">Toni Husbands</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-mistakes-that-make-a-bad-credit-situation-worse">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-reasons-youre-bad-at-money-and-how-to-fix-it-asap">8 Reasons You&#039;re Bad at Money — And How to Fix It ASAP</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-types-of-overspenders-which-one-are-you">5 Types of Overspenders — Which One Are You?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-turn-your-buyers-remorse-into-better-financial-habits">How to Turn Your Buyer&#039;s Remorse Into Better Financial Habits</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-real-life-calamities-that-can-drain-your-finances-plus-how-to-defend-against-them">8 Real Life Calamities That Can Drain Your Finances (Plus How to Defend Against Them)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-most-likely-to-give-you-lousy-credit">5 Things Most Likely to Give You Lousy Credit</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance avoiding bad credit bad habits credit mistakes credit repair debt relief overspending scams Tue, 09 Jan 2018 09:00:07 +0000 Toni Husbands 2084279 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Fastest Ways to Recover From Holiday Overspending http://www.wisebread.com/7-fastest-ways-to-recover-from-holiday-overspending <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-fastest-ways-to-recover-from-holiday-overspending" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/busy_santa_woman.jpg" alt="Busy Santa woman" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Consumers said they planned to spend an average $967 during the 2017 holiday season, according to research from the National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights &amp; Analytics.</p> <p>That's a lot of money, and you can bet that plenty of holiday shoppers blew their budgets in the process. But here's some good news: Even if you were overly generous this season, you can take steps to recover financially from all that holiday overspending. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-secrets-to-a-debt-free-holiday-season?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Secrets to a Debt-Free Holiday Season</a>)</p> <h2>1. Return what you don't want</h2> <p>If you were generous with others this holiday season, they might have been equally generous with you. This means you might have plenty of holiday gifts sitting around &mdash; maybe some gifts you don't even want or need.</p> <p>If you have the receipts, by all means, return them. Hopefully, you can get cash in exchange. But even if you can't, you'll probably be able to turn your unwanted gifts into store credit. You can then shop at that store on someone else's dime without dipping into your own wallet.</p> <p>Don't worry about hurting someone's feelings here. The main point is to get back on your feet financially, and every little bit helps. (Besides, you don't have to tell Aunt Julia that you aren't going to wear that sweater.)</p> <h2>2. Use those gift cards</h2> <p>The odds are high that you received gift cards this year. The National Retail Federation estimated that 2017 holiday shoppers each planned to purchase around four gift cards with an average value of $45 per card.</p> <p>Too many people throw them in a drawer or tuck them in a wallet and then forget about them. If you got gift cards, <em>use them</em>. Again, these handy cards will let you purchase clothing, electronics, or restaurant meals without you having to spend your own cash. Then, send the dollars you're saving on those splurges toward paying down credit card or other high-interest debt. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-turn-unwanted-gift-cards-into-cash?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Turn Unwanted Gift Cards Into Cash</a>)</p> <h2>3. Pay more than the minimum on your credit cards</h2> <p>You might not want to think about credit card debt right after the holidays, but it's important to not ignore it. Whatever you do, don't only make the minimum required payment. If you do, it can take you years, and cost loads of interest, to pay off that debt.</p> <p>Say you owe $7,000 on a credit card with an interest rate of 18 percent. If you make the 4 percent minimum required payment each month, it will take you 147 months &mdash; or more than 12 years &mdash; to pay off that debt. You'll also pay a total of more than $11,000 on the card. And that assumes you don't make any additional purchases with it.</p> <p>Your goal is to pay off <em>more</em> than the minimum every month. Otherwise, you'll be paying off those holiday mittens and scarves for years. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dealing-with-post-holiday-credit-card-debt?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Dealing With Post-Holiday Credit Card Debt</a>)</p> <h2>4. Stop adding to your debt</h2> <p>Of course, you'll struggle to ever pay off your holiday debt if you don't first stop adding to it. Make a resolution to stop using your credit cards to pay for items. Instead, use your debit cards or cash for your purchases.</p> <p>This will require planning, and maybe a bit of sacrifice. You might have to wait to buy that new laptop until you've saved up enough to pay for it in cash. But you'll be thankful as you watch that credit card debt steadily disappear.</p> <h2>5. Start an emergency fund</h2> <p>If you've resolved to pay down your holiday debt, you'll need savings. What if your water heater bursts or your car conks out? If you don't have any money saved up, you'll have to put those repairs on your credit cards, adding more to your debt levels.</p> <p>A better move is to start creating an emergency fund. As the name suggests, an emergency fund is a stash of cash that you stow in a safe place, like a savings account. You withdraw from the fund to cover any unexpected emergencies.</p> <p>You'll eventually want an emergency fund that has from six months' to a year's worth of daily living expenses in it. That may sound intimidating, but you can start slowly. By investing at least $200 a month in an emergency fund, you'll have $2,400 by the time a year passes. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-easy-ways-to-build-an-emergency-fund-from-0?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Easy Ways to Build an Emergency Fund From $0</a>)</p> <h2>6. Make some sacrifices</h2> <p>The more money you have to devote to your holiday debt, the better. Start the new year by cutting back on unnecessary expenses. All those trips to restaurants and the movies add up. If you cut down on your discretionary spending, you might have $200 or more extra each month to put toward reducing your holiday debt.</p> <h2>7. Get in selling mode</h2> <p>Maybe you received plenty of stuff during the holiday season &mdash; you might even have too much stuff. If so, sell some of it off, either online or through a yard sale. The extra money you make by selling a Crock-Pot or tablet that you no longer need can bring in some much-needed extra cash that you can use to pay down that mountain of debt.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F7-fastest-ways-to-recover-from-holiday-overspending&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F7%2520Fastest%2520Ways%2520to%2520Recover%2520From%2520Holiday%2520Overspending.jpg&amp;description=7%20Fastest%20Ways%20to%20Recover%20From%20Holiday%20Overspending"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/7%20Fastest%20Ways%20to%20Recover%20From%20Holiday%20Overspending.jpg" alt="7 Fastest Ways to Recover From Holiday Overspending" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-fastest-ways-to-recover-from-holiday-overspending">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-money-goals-you-should-set-for-the-holidays">10 Money Goals You Should Set for the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-tidy-up-your-finances-before-the-holidays">10 Ways to Tidy Up Your Finances Before the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-bounce-back-from-your-holiday-splurge">How to Bounce Back From Your Holiday Splurge</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-financial-gifts-to-give-yourself-this-holiday-season">13 Financial Gifts to Give Yourself This Holiday Season</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-secrets-to-a-debt-free-holiday-season">8 Secrets to a Debt-Free Holiday Season</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance bouncing back Christmas credit card debt emergency funds gifts Holidays overspending returns shopping Tue, 02 Jan 2018 10:00:06 +0000 Dan Rafter 2070211 at http://www.wisebread.com The U.S. Savings Rate Has Tanked — Here's Why That Matters http://www.wisebread.com/the-us-savings-rate-has-tanked-heres-why-that-matters <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-us-savings-rate-has-tanked-heres-why-that-matters" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/financial_headache.jpg" alt="Financial Headache" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Are you stashing away fewer dollars in your retirement or savings accounts? You're not alone.</p> <p>The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis reported that Americans are saving less money today than they have at anytime since 2007. The bureau reported that the U.S. savings rate fell to 3.1 percent in September 2017. That's the lowest it's been since this rate fell to 3 percent in December of 2007.</p> <p>If you recall, 2007 wasn't a great economic time for the United States. It was the beginning stages of the housing crash and the Great Recession. This prompts the question: Is the low savings rate a warning sign that the national economy might be in line for a slowdown? And why are people saving less?</p> <h2>A lower savings rate could mean a few things</h2> <p>The lower savings rate might mean that consumers are more confident in the economy. Instead of putting their dollars in traditional savings vehicles, people are investing more in the stock market and other assets. That happens when the economy is strong and investors think they can realize stronger returns.</p> <p>At the same time, consumers were spending more. The same report from the Bureau of Economic Analysis found that consumer spending rose 1 percent in September. That jump is the biggest since 2009.</p> <p>Again, this could be an indicator that consumers are more confident in the national economy. But, it could also be a worrisome trend. The drop in the savings rate at the same time that spending is up might be a sign that Americans aren't necessarily earning more, but are spending more at the expense of their savings. This trend is a dangerous one, as it can put more people in financial trouble down the line.</p> <h2>Keeping your savings up to speed</h2> <p>Of course, you can't worry about what people across the country are doing. You can, though, take a look at your <em>own</em> finances to determine if you are saving enough money. Exactly how much should you be saving? That's a complicated question, but a few rules of thumb can guide you in the right direction.</p> <h3>Emergency fund</h3> <p>You should have an emergency fund in a low-risk savings account that you can use to pay for unexpected repairs or financial emergencies. Financial experts recommend that you have at least six to 12 months' worth of daily living expenses saved in an emergency fund. That figure might sound intimidating, but if you start saving just a bit now, your emergency fund can grow quickly. If you save $100 a month, for instance, you'll have $1,200 saved after a year. Boost that figure to $300 a month, and you'll have a financial cushion with $3,600 in it by the end of a year. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-easy-ways-to-build-an-emergency-fund-from-0?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Easy Ways to Build an Emergency Fund From $0</a>)</p> <h3>Retirement savings</h3> <p>How much you need for retirement varies depending on a host of factors; everything from what kind of retirement you want &mdash; one that involves a lot of traveling will cost more than one in which you spend most of your time golfing or fishing &mdash; and how much income you'll be earning each month.</p> <p>As a general rule, financial experts recommend that you save 10 to 15 percent of your income each year for retirement starting in your 20s. If you hit this goal every year, you should be able to build a solid nest egg for your post-work years.</p> <p>The challenge, though, is that this is such a general approach to retirement savings. It doesn't take into account the vagaries of your own financial situation. You might not have to save as much if you have royalty income, you plan to work part-time after leaving your full-time job, or you have inheritance money to rely on.</p> <p>The best advice is to max out contributions to an IRA and/or 401(k) account. Then meet with a certified financial planner who can study your current financial situation to determine if you are on pace to meet your retirement goals. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-signs-you-arent-saving-enough-for-retirement?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Signs You Aren't Saving Enough for Retirement</a>)</p> <p>And about that national savings rate? Just because <em>some </em>Americans are spending more and saving less doesn't mean you have to follow the trend. Stick to your savings goals if you want to enjoy a lower-stress financial life.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fthe-us-savings-rate-has-tanked-heres-why-that-matters&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FThe%2520U.S.%2520Savings%2520Rate%2520Has%2520Tanked%2520%25E2%2580%2594%2520Heres%2520Why%2520That%2520Matters.jpg&amp;description=The%20U.S.%20Savings%20Rate%20Has%20Tanked%20%E2%80%94%20Heres%20Why%20That%20Matters"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/The%20U.S.%20Savings%20Rate%20Has%20Tanked%20%E2%80%94%20Heres%20Why%20That%20Matters.jpg" alt="The U.S. Savings Rate Has Tanked &mdash; Here's Why That Matters" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-us-savings-rate-has-tanked-heres-why-that-matters">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-personal-finance-rules-to-live-by-in-your-40s">6 Personal Finance Rules to Live By in Your 40s</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tariffs-what-they-are-and-how-they-impact-your-finances">Tariffs: What They Are and How They Impact Your Finances</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/when-interest-rates-head-up">When Interest Rates Head Up</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/peak-debt">Peak Debt</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-world-currencies-that-took-a-hit-in-2016">8 World Currencies That Took a Hit in 2016</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Financial News Economy emergency fund overspending retirement savings savings rate Tue, 21 Nov 2017 09:30:10 +0000 Dan Rafter 2057711 at http://www.wisebread.com How a Surprise Credit Limit Increase Can Harm You http://www.wisebread.com/how-a-surprise-credit-limit-increase-can-harm-you <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-a-surprise-credit-limit-increase-can-harm-you" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_credit_card_637329676.jpg" alt="Learning how a surprise credit limit increase can harm you" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The email can catch you by surprise: You get a message from a bank telling you that your credit limit has increased. Banks routinely check the financial health of their credit card customers. When these customers have a good credit score and a history of paying their bills on time, they might decide to raise their credit limit by $5,000, $10,000, or more.</p> <p>You might welcome a surprise boost in your credit limit, but you should also be wary of this: An increase in your credit limit can cause problems if you're not careful.</p> <h2>Don't add to your debt</h2> <p>Do you spend more with your credit cards than you can technically afford? Are you unable to pay off your balance in full each month? If so, an increase in your credit limit has potential to make things worse.</p> <p>Credit card debt is some of the worst debt to carry because it comes with such high interest rates &mdash; sometimes as high as 20 percent or more. If you carry a balance on such cards from month to month, the amount you owe can soar solely because of this interest.</p> <p>Here's an example: Say you are carrying a balance of $8,000 on your credit card at an interest rate of 17 percent. Now, say that your minimum monthly payment is 4 percent of that balance. If you only make this minimum payment each month, it will take you over 12 years to pay off your balance. The total interest you will pay during this time is a bit more than $4,272 &mdash; and that assumes that you won't be using that credit card to make any additional purchases.</p> <p>If a credit limit increase inspires you to spend even further beyond what you can't pay off each month, you'll simply be increasing the time it takes to pay off your credit card debt. The smart move after receiving a limit increase is to set your own personal charging limit. Even if your card's credit limit is $20,000, resolve not to charge more than $500 a month if that's all you can afford to pay off when your card's payment date arrives. Don't add to the mountain of high-interest credit card debt you're already struggling to pay off. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-pay-less-interest-on-your-credit-card-debt?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Pay Less Interest on Your Credit Card Debt</a>)</p> <h2>Monitor your credit utilization ratio</h2> <p>If a higher credit limit encourages you to spend more, you might also be hurting your credit score, even if you pay your credit card bill on time each month. This has to do with your <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-one-ratio-is-the-key-to-a-good-credit-score?ref=internal" target="_blank">credit utilization ratio</a>. Your credit score will fall if you use up too much of the credit available to you. It will rise if you are using less of it.</p> <p>Getting a credit limit increase would seem to help your credit utilization ratio. After all, if you have more credit available to you, you will automatically be using less of it the day that credit limit increase kicks in. But if that credit limit increase inspires to you to go on a charging binge, you could quickly use up your credit increase in new purchases. That, in turn, will hurt your credit utilization ratio and your credit score.</p> <p>Again, the key is to set personal limits and stick to them. Determine a reasonable amount of money you can charge each month and don't charge more than that.</p> <h2>Don't cancel that card</h2> <p>If you're worried that you can't handle a credit limit increase, don't cancel your credit card. This will automatically increase your credit utilization ratio and damage your credit score. Once you close a card, the amount of credit available to you will automatically drop without you even charging another cent.</p> <p>You can call your credit card issuer to request that your credit limit be reduced, but that might be a risky strategy. Remember, having a higher credit limit is good for your credit score, as long as you don't swallow it up by charging too much. By removing that increase, you won't get the credit score boost that can come with higher credit limit.</p> <p>Instead, stick to that personal charging limit you've set, no matter how much available credit you have. Maxing out your credit cards is a bad financial strategy, no matter how high your credit limits.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-a-surprise-credit-limit-increase-can-harm-you&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520a%2520Surprise%2520Credit%2520Limit%2520Increase%2520Can%2520Harm%2520You.jpg&amp;description=How%20a%20Surprise%20Credit%20Limit%20Increase%20Can%20Harm%20You"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20a%20Surprise%20Credit%20Limit%20Increase%20Can%20Harm%20You.jpg" alt="How a Surprise Credit Limit Increase Can Harm You" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-a-surprise-credit-limit-increase-can-harm-you">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/debunking-8-common-credit-score-myths">Debunking 8 Common Credit Score Myths</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-actions-to-take-when-youre-denied-a-credit-limit-increase">9 Actions to Take When You&#039;re Denied a Credit Limit Increase</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-debt-payoffs-that-boost-your-credit-score-the-most">The 7 Debt Payoffs That Boost Your Credit Score the Most</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-millennials-guide-to-avoiding-credit-card-debt">The Millennials Guide to Avoiding Credit Card Debt</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-build-your-financial-self-esteem">8 Ways to Build Your Financial Self Esteem</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance credit limit credit score credit utilization ratio debt interest rates limit increase overspending Thu, 16 Nov 2017 10:00:06 +0000 Dan Rafter 2055071 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Excuses We Need to Stop Making About Overspending http://www.wisebread.com/5-excuses-we-need-to-stop-making-about-overspending <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-excuses-we-need-to-stop-making-about-overspending" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/out_of_cash_lost money_being_broke_concept.jpg" alt="Out of cash, lost money, being broke concept" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Being able to rationalize something that we know we shouldn't do is one of the things that humans are best at. Specifically, we do a fantastic job of coming up with reasons to explain away or excuse our overspending. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-types-of-overspenders-which-one-are-you?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Types of Overspenders &mdash; Which One Are You?</a>)</p> <p>But no matter how clever you are in coming up with a great reason for maxing out your credit card, emptying your savings account, or otherwise living large on money you don't have, your overspending will catch up with you. That's why it's time to stop relying on these excuses for spending more than you can afford. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-biggest-lies-we-tell-ourselves-about-money?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 10 Biggest Lies We Tell Ourselves About Money</a>)</p> <h2>1. &quot;I deserve it&quot;</h2> <p>After a long day at the office, you decide to swing by your favorite store, telling yourself you deserve a retail pick-me-up after all your hard work &mdash; even though you can't afford it. Or after finishing a major project, you go on a lavish vacation, courtesy of your credit card, because you deserve some time to unwind. Or when your old clunker finally gives out on you, you decide to lease a much more expensive car that will turn heads as you zoom past, because you deserve to have a ride that matches how fabulous you are.</p> <p>Buying something you can't afford may provide a temporary thrill that feels like a reward in the moment. But the debt associated with your splurge will soon begin to feel like a burden. Where's the reward in that?</p> <h3>End the excuse</h3> <p>If you think that you deserve things that you can't afford to buy, you've got it all backward. What you deserve is feeling less stress and more happiness. There are plenty of ways to reward yourself for hard work that don't involve spending money. Take time out from your routine to go for a walk with a friend, indulge in a favorite TV show, or simply count your blessings.</p> <p>Anytime you are struggling with the sense that you deserve something you don't have, take a moment to write a list of things you are grateful that you <em>do </em>have. This can help put the &quot;I deserve it&quot; excuse in context.</p> <h2>2. &quot;It's on sale&quot;</h2> <p>The fact that an item is cheaper than it could be is often an excellent excuse for buying it &mdash; at least according to our irrational brains. Unfortunately, retailers are onto this quirk of our thinking, and so they play any number of shenanigans with prices to make products seem like a good deal. This includes everything from artificially jacking up prices in order to be able to offer the items &quot;on sale,&quot; to offering unbeatable discounts that are delivered directly to your email inbox. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-coupons-trick-you-into-spending-more-money?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Times Coupons Trick You Into Spending More Money</a>)</p> <h3>End the excuse</h3> <p>There are two ways to deal with this excuse. The first is to simply avoid sales situations that will tempt you to overspend because of the low prices. According to a 2013 study in the <em>Journal of Personality</em>, the key to saying no to temptations is to avoid them. Maia Szalavitz reported on this study for <em>TIME</em>, writing &quot;[the highly self-disciplined] tended to avoid creating situations in which their goals would conflict, and reported fewer instances of having to choose between short-term pleasure and long-term pain.&quot;</p> <p>For those individuals who still struggle to avoid sales, there is another way to let go of this excuse for overspending. Ask yourself the following three questions about any sale item that tempts you to spend:</p> <ol> <li> <p>Do I need this item?</p> </li> <li> <p>Would I buy this item if it weren't on sale?</p> </li> <li> <p>Can I afford to buy this item?</p> </li> </ol> <p>Unless the answer to all three questions is an unqualified yes, put the item down and walk away.</p> <h2>3. &quot;I was going to buy it anyway&quot;</h2> <p>What if you do answer that you need an item on sale, even though you simply don't have the money for it right now? At that point, you can often rationalize purchasing the item because you're going to have to buy it anyway, so you might as well do so now.</p> <p>Unfortunately, we are very good at lying to ourselves about whether or not we truly did plan to buy something at some point in the future. I can recall a pair of adorable rain boots that I bought on a bright sunny day because I convinced myself that I was going to need them at some point soon anyway. But I had no immediate need for the boots, and I could have gone quite some time without them. I told myself I <em>needed</em> the boots simply because I <em>wanted </em>to buy them. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-mental-biases-that-are-keeping-you-poor?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Mental Biases That Are Keeping You Poor</a>)</p> <h3>End the excuse</h3> <p>This excuse is a way of pretending that something you want is something you need. To help you navigate the difference between wants and needs, institute a waiting period for any unplanned purchases. When you see something that you are convinced you will buy anyway, commit to waiting at least 24 hours before you make the purchase. This will help you to separate the &quot;Wow, I want this now&quot; chaff from the &quot;OK, I'll need to come back for this later&quot; wheat.</p> <h2>4. &quot;I was good last month, so I can afford to splurge now&quot;</h2> <p>You've been depriving yourself by taking the bus instead of Ubering, choking down the office coffee instead of getting your morning latte, and even saying no to a pub crawl with friends &mdash; so now it's time to enjoy the fruits of your labors. You reason that you're allowed to go a little nuts, since you've already been so good for so long.</p> <p>The problem is that this mentality is similar to the excuses that dieters and exercisers use when they fall off the wagon. This excuse makes it clear that you see your underspending month (or month of dieting or jogging) as a kind of deprivation. If you think of underspending as good behavior that you can perform in order to get back to your usual program of overspending, you'll never be able to get ahead financially. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-resist-a-splurge?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Ways to Resist a Splurge</a>)</p> <h3>End the excuse</h3> <p>It's important for everyone to find a budget or spending plan that they can live with for the long term &mdash; one that does not feel like deprivation, but does allow you to live within your means. You can completely foil this excuse for overspending if you create a budget that still allows you to spend money on the things you care about most, while cutting the items that don't matter as much to you.</p> <p>When you have a financial life that you feel good about committing to long term, you will be able to end the thought process that encourages you to overspend after doing a great job of living within your means.</p> <h2>5. &quot;It's the holidays&quot;</h2> <p>It feels great to spend money to celebrate the holidays and give gifts to family and friends. And our brains can keep that great feeling going by convincing us that spending money on these things is a selfless act. After all, we just want to provide our loved ones with a memorable and happy holiday, which means we can put it all on a credit card and worry about the bill later. We're spreading holiday cheer, for heaven's sake!</p> <p>But there are real consequences to overspending for the holidays. Your loved ones would hate to see you feel overwhelmed by credit card debt or unable to save for the future because of the money you spent on showering them with gifts. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dealing-with-post-holiday-credit-card-debt?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Dealing With Post-Holiday Credit Card Debt</a>)</p> <h3>End the excuse</h3> <p>The best way to end this excuse is to recognize just what you are getting out of spending money on gifts, decorations, food, or other traditions. While you do want to create a lovely holiday memory for your family, you probably also love being known as the Christmas hostess with the extravagant brunch menu or the uncle who always has the best presents.</p> <p>Once you admit that you get something out of overspending on gifts or the holiday, you can start coming up with ways to get that same feeling without overspending. When you recognize that your spending isn't entirely selfless, it's much easier to come up with creative ways to evoke the magic of the season without giving your credit card a daily workout.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F5-excuses-we-need-to-stop-making-about-overspending&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F5%2520Excuses%2520We%2520Need%2520to%2520Stop%2520Making%2520About%2520Overspending.jpg&amp;description=5%20Excuses%20We%20Need%20to%20Stop%20Making%20About%20Overspending"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/5%20Excuses%20We%20Need%20to%20Stop%20Making%20About%20Overspending.jpg" alt="5 Excuses We Need to Stop Making About Overspending" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-excuses-we-need-to-stop-making-about-overspending">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-money-goals-you-should-set-for-the-holidays">10 Money Goals You Should Set for the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-being-single-is-better-for-your-bank-account">7 Ways Being Single is Better for Your Bank Account</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-fastest-ways-to-recover-from-holiday-overspending">7 Fastest Ways to Recover From Holiday Overspending</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-on-christmas-shopping-with-this-clever-gift-card-strategy">Save on Christmas Shopping With This Clever Gift Card Strategy</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-prepare-for-your-best-black-friday">11 Ways to Prepare for Your Best Black Friday</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Shopping buying excuses gifts Holidays overspending sales saving money Tue, 14 Nov 2017 09:00:06 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 2051157 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Turn Your Buyer's Remorse Into Better Financial Habits http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-turn-your-buyers-remorse-into-better-financial-habits <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-turn-your-buyers-remorse-into-better-financial-habits" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_checking_a_long_receipt.jpg" alt="Man checking a long receipt" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You race home with a new flat-screen TV, or you excitedly drive off the dealer's lot with a pricey new car. You think it'll bring you joy, but it doesn't; you get home and buyer's remorse sets in.</p> <p>We're all familiar with that sinking feeling that comes when we spend money on something we probably shouldn't have. But what if there was a way to spin buyer's remorse into a learning opportunity? What if that feeling could actually inspire you to develop better financial habits?</p> <p>The good news is it <em>can</em>.</p> <h2>Why you get buyer's remorse</h2> <p>Before you learn how to harness buyer's remorse for good, it's important to realize why you get it in the first place.</p> <p>The most obvious answer, of course, is that you get this feeling because you've spent money on an item that doesn't give you the happiness you expected it to provide. The amount of money doesn't always matter. You can experience buyer's remorse from a huge purchase, such as a home, or from something as small as a latte on the way to work. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-do-we-feel-buyer-s-remorse-anyway?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Why Do We Feel Buyer's Remorse, Anyway?</a>)</p> <h2>Using that sinking feeling for good</h2> <p>If you've made a purchase you now regret, don't fall into too deep of a funk. Instead, use that feeling of buyer's remorse to change your spending habits for the better.</p> <p>Before heading out to any store, make a list of what you want to buy and<em> only </em>buy the items on that list. As you stare at the magazines, candies, and individual-sized bottles of soda near the cash register, keep looking at the list. Did you buy everything on it? Yes? Then you're done shopping.</p> <p>If you're ready to make a big purchase, such as a house or car, doing the proper research beforehand can help you avoid buyer's remorse. Reading online reviews, talking with friends, and comparison shopping can all help. And if you think this is simply too much work, take a look at the most recent item you purchased that gave you buyer's remorse. Does that item give you any pleasure today? If not, remember that lousy feeling. A little research is a lot less painful than a bout of buyer's remorse.</p> <p>You can also use the feeling of buyer's remorse for a bit of self-examination. Sometimes we get buyer's remorse not because we bought the wrong item, but because we overspend as a way to make ourselves feel better. Problem is, this rarely works and often leaves us in debt.</p> <p>Look at the things that give you pleasure that don't involve buying anything. Maybe you feel good when you take your kids to the park. Maybe a daily bike ride boosts your spirits. You might feel joy from playing cards with friends or sitting on the front porch and chatting with your neighbors. Spend more time doing these activities &mdash; ones that don't cost you any money &mdash; instead of relying on making new purchases. You'll experience a lot less buyer's remorse. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-avoid-buyers-remorse?Ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Ways to Avoid Buyer's Remorse</a>)</p> <h2>Confirmation bias and the decoy effect</h2> <p>Finally, use your buyer's remorse to recognize two key retail strategies that often lead consumers to overspend in the first place: confirmation bias and the decoy effect.</p> <p>Confirmation bias is a condition in which you are apt to believe information that conforms to your prior beliefs. You ignore everything else. Marketers know about this bias, and aren't afraid to take advantage of it. Maybe you rent an apartment. That apartment might fit nicely in your budget, but deep down you want to own your own home.</p> <p>You are then more likely to believe the ads from local real estate agents telling you that owning a home is part of the American dream and a good way to build wealth over time. At the same time, you might ignore any marketing promoting the benefits of renting, because you would rather believe the information you're seeing about homeownership.</p> <p>You're more likely to experience buyer's remorse if you immediately buy an item &mdash; even something as big as a new home &mdash; based on this advertising. Resist the urge to purchase something just because the company behind it, or the person selling it, tells you it's the best choice. Instead, try to look objectively at your choices and your finances, and keep an open mind to find the best option for you.</p> <p>The decoy effect is a bit simpler, but still effective. This is when retailers place a lower-priced item next to one that is higher-priced. You see this and you automatically assume that the lower-priced item is a good deal. Unfortunately, this isn't always true. That lower-priced item might still be priced too high, and it might not provide you with any pleasure when you get it home.</p> <p>Do your research before entering a store, or stick to your list of items to buy, and you'll lessen your odds of falling victim to the decoy effect. Even better, your risk of buyer's remorse will also drop. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-mental-biases-that-are-keeping-you-poor?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Mental Biases That Are Keeping You Poor</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-to-turn-your-buyers-remorse-into-better-financial-habits&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520to%2520Turn%2520Your%2520Buyers%2520Remorse%2520Into%2520Better%2520Financial%2520Habits.jpg&amp;description=How%20to%20Turn%20Your%20Buyers%20Remorse%20Into%20Better%20Financial%20Habits"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20to%20Turn%20Your%20Buyers%20Remorse%20Into%20Better%20Financial%20Habits.jpg" alt="How to Turn Your Buyer's Remorse Into Better Financial Habits" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-turn-your-buyers-remorse-into-better-financial-habits">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-avoid-buyers-remorse">6 Ways to Avoid Buyer&#039;s Remorse</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-types-of-overspenders-which-one-are-you">5 Types of Overspenders — Which One Are You?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-reasons-youre-bad-at-money-and-how-to-fix-it-asap">8 Reasons You&#039;re Bad at Money — And How to Fix It ASAP</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-excuses-we-need-to-stop-making-about-overspending">5 Excuses We Need to Stop Making About Overspending</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-signs-you-have-a-serious-spending-addiction">7 Signs You Have a Serious Spending Addiction</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Shopping bad habits buyer's remorse cognitive biases confirmation bias decoy effect overspending regrets Mon, 13 Nov 2017 08:00:05 +0000 Dan Rafter 2050493 at http://www.wisebread.com Boost Your Savings With This Easy Budgeting System http://www.wisebread.com/boost-your-savings-with-this-easy-budgeting-system <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/boost-your-savings-with-this-easy-budgeting-system" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/happy_young_woman_showing_piggy_bank_with_money.jpg" alt="Happy young woman showing piggy bank with money" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When it comes to saving and investing, it helps to have a system. My family has developed our own system of saving money that has allowed us to reduce our spending and direct more of our money toward long-term goals.</p> <p>In a sense, this system is similar to the famed <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-secrets-to-mastering-the-debt-snowball" target="_blank">&quot;snowball&quot; debt-reduction approach</a> in that it focuses a person's attention on small, achievable goals. But while the snowball method is geared toward paying down small debts before large ones, our method is more focused on saving money in small increments, and hoping that small gains eventually turn into large ones.</p> <p>My system does require some discipline and it can be challenging. But the challenge is part of what can make the system fun. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-smart-money-challenges-you-can-totally-do?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Smart Money Challenges You Can Totally Do</a>)</p> <h2>1. Track your spending</h2> <p>We use credit cards and debit cards for most purchases, allowing us to have a real-time record of what we're spending. Our credit card company does a good job of placing our expenditures into categories such as &quot;restaurants,&quot; &quot;automotive,&quot; &quot;grocery,&quot; and &quot;entertainment.&quot; Account aggregation websites such as Mint and Personal Capital can help with this as well. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-5-apps-will-help-you-finally-organize-your-money?ref=seealso" target="_blank">These 5 Apps Will Help You Finally Organize Your Money</a>)</p> <h2>2. Find monthly averages</h2> <p>Once your spending is tracked and categorized, it's time to do some math. Your goal should be to determine what you spend in each category each month, on average. I like to find the average over the previous 12 months, but a six-month average is also OK. Once you determine those averages, save them into a spreadsheet. Each of those numbers is now your starting monthly budget for those categories.</p> <p>For example: Let's say that you have spent $1,000 eating out at restaurants over the last 12 months. That averages to about $83 per month. Your goal for the upcoming month should be to keep your restaurant spending under $83.</p> <p>It's important to also include monthly averages for large, but irregular expenses. Perhaps you spent nothing on auto repairs during 11 months out of the year, but spent $2,400 in July. In this system, it's prudent to budget $200 per month for auto repairs so that you have money saved if you encounter a similar expense.</p> <h2>3. Beat and lower your averages</h2> <p>We all know it's not good enough to be average. You want to be better than average, right? So your goal each month should be to spend less &mdash; significantly less, if possible &mdash; than your monthly average. You may not be able to beat your average in every spending category, but you'll likely spend less in some places and hopefully lower your spending overall.</p> <p>If you spend less than your average in a given month, the next step is a crucial one: It's imperative that you lower your goal based on your new average. In other words, if your goal was to beat your average $50 in fast food expenses during the month, and you find that you've spent $40, it's time to recalculate your average and make that the new goal. Embrace the challenge!</p> <h2>4. Try to beat your best</h2> <p>If you really want to challenge yourself to save money, adjust your monthly budgets even lower to have them in line with your best month, not your average. We all have that one month where we impress ourselves with our financial discipline. Maybe you went an entire month only going out to eat once. Perhaps you had one month where you were super about saving energy. Find that month, and make that the new budget baseline. If you can beat that number on a consistent basis, you're doing awesome.</p> <h2>5. Savor the small victories</h2> <p>One of the reasons I like this system is that it allows you to zero in on specific parts of your finances without getting overwhelmed by the big picture. It can be demoralizing to look at your total lump sum of expenses and debt and feel like you're not getting ahead. But if you are focused on reducing spending in various categories, you have many opportunities for small wins. Even if your overall spending didn't decline much during a month, you can feel good that you <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/shop-the-salad-bar-and-other-ways-to-save-big-on-groceries" target="_blank">spent less on groceries</a>, or found ways to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/34-smart-ways-to-cut-your-electric-bill" target="_blank">reduce your electric bill</a>. That good feeling can be contagious, and before you know it, you'll find that you are spending less overall.</p> <h2>6. Treat saving like an expense</h2> <p>My family makes a point of putting away a set amount of money each month into a variety of separate savings and investment accounts. There is money directed toward Roth IRA accounts, some funds placed in 529 College Savings plans, and another amount put into an online savings account with a higher interest rate. We also set aside money for big ticket items, such as a new car. When we track our spending, we treat these like expenses. Only in this case, we are treating these costs in the opposite way we treat our day-to-day expenses. Rather than reduce this number, we want to <em>increase </em>it if possible. So if you're putting $100 a month into an IRA, try to bump that up to $110 or $125. This may require you to reduce your spending budgets in other areas, but that's the whole point, right? (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-retirement-accounts-you-dont-need-a-ton-of-money-to-open?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Retirement Accounts You Don't Need a Ton of Money to Open</a>)</p> <h2>7. Pay down debt or add to savings</h2> <p>This system is all about saving money, so if you reduce your spending in one area, it's a bad idea to go and increase spending somewhere else. If you find that you have spent less in one category in a given month, use that money to pay down debt faster or increase your savings investments. Let's say you spend $25 less on groceries this month. Well, think of that as $25 more to pay off your auto loan, place into your IRA, or fund your college savings account. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-day-debt-reduction-plan-pay-it-off?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5-Day Debt Reduction Plan: Pay It Off</a>)</p> <h2>8. Keep an eye on new expenses</h2> <p>No matter how maniacal you are about saving, there will be times when you are forced to increase spending in some areas. If you have a child, rest assured you will be spending more on food, clothing, and a host of other things. If you have an older car, you may find yourself paying more for repairs. You may get a new job that adds income but also commuting costs. It's fine to make appropriate adjustments to your budgets as you go, as long as you eventually settle into a practice of trying to reduce spending and boost savings whenever possible.</p> <h2>9. Throw new income into savings</h2> <p>This system is all about reducing spending and finding ways to shift your money from costs to savings and investments. Income is not irrelevant, because you need to know how much you have to work with. But you should try to avoid making grand changes to your budgets if you get a boost in pay. Any new money you have should be used to increase savings, pay down debt, or invest. It should not be used to increase your individual budgets. If you got by spending $200 on groceries before your pay raise, you can get by on that same amount now. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-budget-when-youre-no-longer-broke?Ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Budget When You're No Longer Broke</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fboost-your-savings-with-this-easy-budgeting-system&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FBoost%2520Your%2520Savings%2520With%2520This%2520Easy%2520Budgeting%2520System.jpg&amp;description=Boost%20Your%20Savings%20With%20This%20Easy%20Budgeting%20System"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/Boost%20Your%20Savings%20With%20This%20Easy%20Budgeting%20System.jpg" alt="Boost Your Savings With This Easy Budgeting System" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tim-lemke">Tim Lemke</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/boost-your-savings-with-this-easy-budgeting-system">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-an-all-cash-diet-right-for-you">Is an All-Cash Diet Right for You?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-live-on-12-000-a-year">How to live on $12,000 a year</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-everyday-money-tasks-youve-been-doing-wrong">12 Everyday Money Tasks You&#039;ve Been Doing Wrong</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-manage-your-money-no-budgeting-required">How to Manage Your Money — No Budgeting Required</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-reasons-youre-still-stuck-in-a-financial-hole">8 Reasons You&#039;re Still Stuck in a Financial Hole</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Budgeting debt reduction money challenges overspending reducing expenses saving money snowball method spare change Fri, 27 Oct 2017 09:00:06 +0000 Tim Lemke 2040130 at http://www.wisebread.com What to Do When You've Blown Your Budget for the Month http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-when-youve-blown-your-budget-for-the-month <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/what-to-do-when-youve-blown-your-budget-for-the-month" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/budget_jar.jpg" alt="Budget jar" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You're a week into a new month, and you take a look at your bank account &mdash; only to find it dangerously low. You've spent way more than you had budgeted for way too early.</p> <p>Overspending happens. Sometimes it's planned (like for a vacation), but other times things get out of control, emergencies occur, or you end up in situations where spending money legitimately seems like the best way out.</p> <p>No matter the reason for your blown up budget, there are steps you can take to limit and mitigate the damage.</p> <h2>Assess the situation</h2> <p>Start by being completely honest with yourself about the situation. Determine what caused it, how much responsibility you bear, and whether it's going to be ongoing. For instance, a medical emergency could be over after a couple of days, or it could be something that you're going to need to budget for into the future.</p> <p>If the budget blowout is your fault, admit your mistake. It helps to tell someone, whether it's your spouse, a good friend, or someone else you're close to. This makes it real, and it also means you'll have someone to keep you accountable.</p> <p>If the issue was beyond your control, let yourself off the hook for any guilt. Emergencies happen. Simply focus on trying to bounce back and don't stew over the situation.</p> <p>You also need to determine how you will be affected financially for the rest of the month. Do you have the money to cover your bills and expenses, or is this going to leave you totally strapped for cash? You can't bounce back until you know exactly where you stand.</p> <h2>Tap your emergency fund</h2> <p>While it's best to save an emergency fund for a true emergency, like a medical crisis or an essential car repair, you may need to use it to bail yourself out of a tough financial spot.</p> <p>The key to using an emergency fund, though, is to replenish it afterward. If you overspent and it saved you, you need to start putting money back into it the following month. As long as you make sure you are doing this regularly, you will be more likely to have that financial cushion again when you need it.</p> <h2>Cut your losses</h2> <p>Stop spending wherever you can. No matter your situation, there are things you can do to spend less. Cut out restaurant and takeout meals and prep your own food at home. Pack a lunch to work. See if you can walk, bike, or even carpool to the office or out on errands. Don't spend money on anything that isn't an absolute necessity.</p> <p>If you are in a budget hole of your own doing, this is the time to get strict with yourself. Maybe you need to spend a week of evenings at home instead of out with friends. Maybe you can invite them over instead of going out. Or, maybe you need to face your shopping addiction, and learn to cope with negative feelings in other ways.</p> <p>No matter where you are and what is going on, the first thing you need to do is stem the outflow of money.</p> <h2>Make a plan</h2> <p>Once you know how you're going to stop the bleeding, it's time to make a plan for how you're going to cover your expenses and pay off any debt that has accrued.</p> <p>If you're in the middle of a crisis, this may not be something you're able to do until later. If you can sit down and assess your finances, though, you will probably be better off. Grief and pain can be overwhelming, however, so if the best you can do is put things on a low-interest credit card until you can deal with them later, that's an acceptable temporary move. Just be sure to make paying off that credit card balance a priority once you're back on your feet.</p> <p>Note that you may need to revamp your budget for a while to accommodate extra credit card payments or reestablish your emergency fund. You may even have to cut your spending for a few months into the future. Knowing this ahead of time can make those months less of a financial struggle.</p> <p>This is also the time to look beyond the surface at what caused this crisis and determine whether you can do anything to keep it from happening again. Do you need a larger emergency fund? Do you need to cultivate more discipline with money? Do you need to talk to a therapist about how you feel when you spend? Make a plan not only to cover the amount you spent, but to keep yourself from similar situations in the future.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fwhat-to-do-when-youve-blown-your-budget-for-the-month&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FWhat%2520to%2520Do%2520When%2520Youve%2520Blown%2520Your%2520Budget%2520for%2520the%2520Month.jpg&amp;description=What%20to%20Do%20When%20Youve%20Blown%20Your%20Budget%20for%20the%20Month"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/What%20to%20Do%20When%20Youve%20Blown%20Your%20Budget%20for%20the%20Month.jpg" alt="What to Do When You've Blown Your Budget for the Month" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-when-youve-blown-your-budget-for-the-month">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-budget-during-a-crisis">How to Budget During a Crisis</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-boost-your-financial-resilience">5 Ways to Boost Your Financial Resilience</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-an-all-cash-diet-right-for-you">Is an All-Cash Diet Right for You?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-golden-rules-of-personal-finance-everyone-should-know">10 Golden Rules of Personal Finance Everyone Should Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/boost-your-savings-with-this-easy-budgeting-system">Boost Your Savings With This Easy Budgeting System</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Budgeting Crisis emergencies emergency funds overspending ruined budget running out of money Spending Money Thu, 27 Jul 2017 08:00:05 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1990723 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Types of Overspenders — Which One Are You? http://www.wisebread.com/5-types-of-overspenders-which-one-are-you <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-types-of-overspenders-which-one-are-you" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/shopaholic_overspending.jpg" alt="Shopaholic overspending" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Plenty of us overspend each month. Some of us overspend so much and so regularly that we end up with overwhelming credit card bills, missed loan payments, and black marks on our credit reports.</p> <p>One of the keys to gaining control over unhealthy spending habits is to recognize why you spend too much. There are different types of overspenders, and they break their budgets each month for different reasons. Recognizing those reasons can be the first step in fighting back against your bad financial habits.</p> <h2>A growing problem</h2> <p>The numbers from Northwestern Mutual's 2017 Planning and Progress Study show that many U.S. residents have a spending problem. According to the survey, nearly three-quarters of U.S. consumers are struggling with debt, owing an average $37,000 &mdash; not counting their mortgage payments. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-old-school-tools-to-help-you-stay-on-budget?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Old School Tools to Help You Stay on Budget</a>)</p> <p>The survey found that, after paying for necessities such as housing, food, and transportation, Americans spend about 40 percent of what&rsquo;s left every month on discretionary expenses like travel, hobbies, and entertainment; they spend only an average 33 percent on paying off debt.</p> <p>What type of overspender are you? The odds are that you&rsquo;ll recognize yourself as one of the following.</p> <h2>1. The compulsive spender</h2> <p>Do you find yourself buying a new fitness tracker just because you've had a bad day at work? Does an argument with your spouse send you fleeing to the clothing store? You might be a compulsive shopper, one who overspends as a way to tamp down unwanted negative feelings. You might not even use the items you buy &mdash; just spending money on them is enough to provide you with temporary emotional relief.</p> <h2>2. The deal shopper</h2> <p>Do you find it impossible to turn away from a deal, even if you don't need the items that are on sale? Then you might be a compulsive bargain hunter. There's nothing wrong with looking for deals when you are shopping. But you shouldn't buy items if you don't need them, no matter how low their prices are.</p> <h2>3. Keeping up with the Joneses (or anyone else)</h2> <p>Did you buy that expensive car not because you needed it, but because you thought it would look good in your driveway? Then you might be obsessed with &quot;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-envy-is-keeping-you-poor?ref=internal" target="_blank">keeping up with</a>&quot; your neighbors, family members, or friends. For you, spending too much is all about maintaining the right image. You want everyone else to know how well you are doing. Unfortunately, it's expensive to keep up with everyone else. Spending too much just to bolster your image can leave you with loads of debt.</p> <h2>4. The secret shopper</h2> <p>Maybe you&rsquo;ve taken out a new credit card without telling your spouse. Or maybe you purchase expensive gadgets and electronics and hide them in the back of your closet. This type of overspending can result in serious trust issues in your relationships, and could ruin friendships or marriages. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-stop-your-spouse-from-overspending?ref=seealso" target="_blank">4 Ways to Stop Your Spouse From Overspending</a>)</p> <h2>5. The extravagant gift giver</h2> <p>Do you think buying your friends or family members new toys, expensive restaurant meals, and high-end wines will make them like you more? Do you routinely overspend just so you can give the best presents each holiday season? Then you might be overspending as a way to get others to like you. This, of course, doesn&rsquo;t work: People won&rsquo;t like you any more or less no matter how much you spend on them.</p> <h2>Breaking the cycle</h2> <p>How do you beat your overspending habits? The first step is to create a household budget listing how much money you earn each month, and how much you can afford to spend. Once you&rsquo;ve done this, you&rsquo;ll at least know when you are overspending on individual budget items.</p> <p>Next, it&rsquo;s important to recognize <em>why</em> you overspend. Does it make you feel powerful and in control? Does it make you feel wealthier than you are? Does it make up for a day of headaches and stress at work?</p> <p>Once you know what triggers your overspending, you can watch for those familiar urges. Instead of mindlessly overspending, you can replace the temptation to use shopping as a de-stressor by adopting other coping mechanisms, such as exercise, meditation, or other relaxation techniques that won&rsquo;t break the bank.</p> <p>You might even seek professional help &mdash; not just from a financial adviser, but from a therapist who can help you identify and control the triggers that lead to your overspending.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F5-types-of-overspenders-which-one-are-you&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F5%2520Types%2520of%2520Overspenders%2520%25E2%2580%2594%2520Which%2520One%2520Are%2520You-.jpg&amp;description=5%20Types%20of%20Overspenders%20%20Which%20One%20Are%20You%3F"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/5%20Types%20of%20Overspenders%20%E2%80%94%20Which%20One%20Are%20You-.jpg" alt="5 Types of Overspenders &mdash; Which One Are You?" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-types-of-overspenders-which-one-are-you">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-signs-you-have-a-serious-spending-addiction">7 Signs You Have a Serious Spending Addiction</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-stop-your-mindless-spending">5 Ways to Stop Your Mindless Spending</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-avoid-buyers-remorse">6 Ways to Avoid Buyer&#039;s Remorse</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-factors-that-could-keep-you-broke-forever">8 Factors That Could Keep You Broke Forever</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-turn-your-buyers-remorse-into-better-financial-habits">How to Turn Your Buyer&#039;s Remorse Into Better Financial Habits</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Shopping bad habits budgeting compulsive impulse buys keeping up with the joneses overspending Secrets shopaholic wasting money Tue, 27 Jun 2017 09:00:11 +0000 Dan Rafter 1971188 at http://www.wisebread.com Are Your Emotions Costing You Money? Take This Quiz http://www.wisebread.com/are-your-emotions-costing-you-money-take-this-quiz <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/are-your-emotions-costing-you-money-take-this-quiz" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/pensive_young_woman_holding_empty_wallet_after_shopping.jpg" alt="Pensive young woman holding empty wallet after shopping" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Building a strong financial foundation for you and your family requires discipline. It requires patience. It requires a steady mindset. But even the best of us have found ourselves spending and making financial decisions based on emotions, whether that's retail therapy, or holding off on investing due to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-over-these-5-scary-things-about-investing?ref=internal" target="_blank">fear of the markets</a>. We've made decisions based on joy or comfort in the short term instead of satisfaction in the long run.</p> <p>Are you letting your emotions control your finances? Answer these questions to find out.</p> <h2>Do you spend money when you feel sad, happy, or stressed?</h2> <p>You had a bad day at work, so you go on a shopping spree for new shoes. You got a promotion, so you celebrate by taking friends out to eat at a fancy restaurant. You spend money as a reaction or antidote to whatever feelings you have at a given moment, and this makes it hard to save money at a healthy rate. You don't need to treat yourself to a costly reward every time you're happy or sad. This is an easy way to fall into a dangerous emotional spending cycle. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-high-cost-of-the-treat-yourself-mindset?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The High Cost of the &quot;Treat Yourself&quot; Mindset</a>)</p> <h2>Have you held off on investing because you are afraid?</h2> <p>Fear is one of the most powerful emotions we have, and many people have never gotten started with retirement planning and investing because they are intimidated. They may find the whole process of investing to be overwhelming, or they may have a fear of asking a dumb question. Additionally, they may fear that their investments will lose money. In reality, it's best to channel fear into investing more, because not having enough money saved for retirement is a truly scary thought. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-steps-to-getting-started-in-the-stock-market-with-index-funds?ref=seealso" target="_blank">3 Steps to Getting Started in the Stock Market With Index Funds</a>)</p> <h2>Have you sold investments when you realized they lost value?</h2> <p>We've probably all found ourselves frustrated with certain investments that have tanked, and sold them at a loss. Of course, then we've kicked ourselves when we've seen those same investments rebound in short order. It's not a good practice to be emotional when investing; the most successful investors practice discipline, patience, and steadfastness over the course of many years.</p> <h2>Have you ever bought something out of jealousy?</h2> <p>One of your closest friends just bought a big house in a nice neighborhood. Another just bought a fancy car. It can seem like other people are making out better than you, but this is no excuse to spend irresponsibly. Keeping up with the joneses is a path to financial hardship if you spend simply because you feel left out or jealous.</p> <h2>Do you get excited about getting a tax return?</h2> <p>It's an often ignored fact that if you are getting a tax refund, you've been lending money to the government interest-free all year. Remember: This was your money that you should have had all along. And yet, most people get a rush of excitement from getting a tax return. What's worse, people often treat their tax return like an unexpected windfall, and spend it frivolously. The sound, unemotional approach to taxes is to adjust your withholding so that you don't get a return at all. In fact, even owing a small amount to the IRS is OK as long as you don't pay a penalty. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-smart-ways-im-spending-my-tax-refund?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Smart Ways I'm Spending My Tax Refund</a>)</p> <h2>Have you ever sought a refund anticipation loan or payday loan?</h2> <p>The same psychology that governs the love of tax returns also applies to those who seek money before it's due to them. If you are seeking cash early, you may end up paying exorbitant fees or interest rates. A typical payday loan might have an annual interest rate of 400 percent, according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/six-horrible-financial-products-you-should-avoid?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Six Horrible Financial Products You Should Avoid</a>)</p> <h2>Are you a habitual gambler?</h2> <p>Let's face it: Gambling can be exciting. It's a rush when you place a bet on some ponies and see your horse cross the finish line first. It's a thrill to see your ball land on your number. But gambling is ultimately an emotion-driven experience, and the excitement of winning can be addicting. Betting on a few hands of blackjack or the occasional football game won't kill you, but it's important to not let your emotions guide your betting habits. There's a long list of fine people who have ruined their financial lives through gambling.</p> <h2>Do you give a lot of money to children and other family members?</h2> <p>There's nothing wrong with being generous to those people who you care about most. But it's important to not let people take advantage of that generosity. Often, the decision to support a family member or friend is done not out of basic selflessness, but a feeling of obligation or guilt. It's important to not let your feeling of obligation to others outweigh your obligation to yourself.</p> <h2>Have you lost a job due to your temper?</h2> <p>Jobs can be frustrating. But if you've ever flown off the handle at work, you may be threatening your income and job security. While it's true that hiring managers look for workers with specific skill sets, they also want to make sure employees are able to get along with their colleagues. Workers who don't interact well with their peers, or respond poorly to criticism, often don't last long.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tim-lemke">Tim Lemke</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-your-emotions-costing-you-money-take-this-quiz">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-biggest-lies-we-tell-ourselves-about-money">The 10 Biggest Lies We Tell Ourselves About Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-build-your-financial-self-esteem">8 Ways to Build Your Financial Self Esteem</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-you-putting-off-these-9-adult-money-moves">Are You Putting Off These 9 Adult Money Moves?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-types-of-friends-who-are-costing-you-money">10 Types of Friends Who Are Costing You Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-meditation-can-make-you-a-money-master">6 Ways Meditation Can Make You a Money Master</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance debt emotional spending fear of markets gambling giving money impulse shopping indulging investing overspending saving spending Wed, 21 Jun 2017 08:00:16 +0000 Tim Lemke 1966173 at http://www.wisebread.com Boost Your Savings by Making Your Money Harder to Spend http://www.wisebread.com/boost-your-savings-by-making-your-money-harder-to-spend <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/boost-your-savings-by-making-your-money-harder-to-spend" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/protect_your_saving.jpg" alt="Protect your saving" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When I left for my freshman year of college, I brought the graduation gift money I'd received with me. It was about $1,000, and I was carrying it in cash, intending to open a checking account. The cash never made it to the bank, however.</p> <p>It wasn't stolen, nor did I lose it. In fact, I tucked the envelope of twenties away in a secure location in my dorm room &mdash; but I neglected to protect the money from myself.</p> <p>From trips to the coffee shop to late night pizza delivery, I let that money flow through my fingers without paying any attention to where it was going or how quickly I was spending it. By the time I finally decided to open an account, there was less than $100 left.</p> <p>My experience is hardly unique. Most people have a similar story of squandering money because it was too easy to access the cash.</p> <p>The trick to being more careful with money is finding ways to make it harder to spend. If I had placed that cash in a checking account as soon as I got to campus, I would have had to walk to the ATM to make my unnecessary purchases &mdash; which would have been more than enough to prevent most of my spending.</p> <p>These days, simply depositing cash in the bank is not enough to make money harder to spend. The availability of mobile banking, debit and credit cards, and one-click online shopping makes money even easier to spend than it was when I was a first-year college student. That's why it is so important to productively reduce access to your money. Here are five ways you can protect your money from your own worst spending impulses. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-bizarre-ways-to-stay-on-budget-that-actually-work?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Bizarre Ways to Stay on Budget (That Actually Work)</a>)</p> <h2>1. Stop carrying credit or debit cards</h2> <p>Going out sans credit or debit card can feel weirder than going about your day naked, but it can be a very effective way to curb your spending. On most days, you probably don't actually need to have a card with you &mdash; it's just there in case you need it. Unfortunately, we then often &quot;need&quot; to stop for lunch, or in a favorite store, or meet everyone after work for happy hour rather than save the card for a legitimate need.</p> <p>To make sure you are covered in case you need to fill up your tank on the way to work, or you encounter another true spending need, get in the habit of carrying $20 or so while leaving your plastic at home. This helps limit your ability to buy things while still giving you access to a little money in case you need it.</p> <h2>2. Move your savings to another bank</h2> <p>Trying to build an emergency fund or reach another savings goal can be difficult if access to your money is too easy. Having a savings account linked to your checking account in the same bank can often be too much of a temptation. It's so easy to dip into that savings account whenever your checking account is running dry or there is an incredible sale.</p> <p>For many people, just making it <em>slightly </em>more difficult to access savings can be enough to stop this behavior. For instance, you can move your savings account to a different bank and establish a link between the two banks. While it's possible to move money between accounts in different banks, it generally takes two to three business days for the money to transfer, which can be inconvenient enough to foil your spending impulses.</p> <h2>3. Put your money in a restrictive savings vehicle</h2> <p>For some people, the inconvenience of separate banking institutions is not quite enough to stop them from accessing their savings when they shouldn't. Restrictive savings vehicles &mdash; accounts or assets that penalize you for early access &mdash; can be a great way to protect your money from yourself in that case.</p> <p>Depending on your time frame, there are a couple of different types of savings vehicles you might choose.</p> <h3>Certificate of deposit (CD)</h3> <p>This is a savings vehicle that requires you to commit to keeping your money in the account for a set period of time. If you withdraw the funds earlier, then you will be penalized. You can generally expect to pay three-to-six months' worth of accrued interest if you access the money early, although some CDs also take a percentage of the principal.</p> <h3>Traditional individual retirement accounts (IRAs)</h3> <p>Traditional IRAs offer tax advantages, which means there are penalties for dipping into them before you reach age 59 &frac12;. Specifically, you will have to pay taxes on both the distribution, as well as 10 percent of the amount of the distribution, to Uncle Sam.</p> <h2>4. Enlist an accountability partner</h2> <p>While it's pretty easy to break a promise to yourself, it's harder to break one you have made to another person. One method of making your money harder to spend is to enlist a friend or loved one as your accountability partner, to whom you will set up a credit card or bank statement alert. Many banks offer automated alert systems that will email or text you when your available credit dips below a certain amount or when a large transaction clears.</p> <p>This information is useful to the cardholder, but it can be a great way to keep you from spending money if you send that information to your accountability partner. Knowing that your partner will immediately know that you have broken your promise can be enough to keep you from whipping out your wallet.</p> <h2>5. Remove your payment information from online retailers</h2> <p>It is far too easy to buy something without really thinking about it when online retailers &quot;helpfully&quot; store our credit card or bank information for us. The minor inconvenience of having to get up and find your wallet is generally enough time for you to reconsider your purchase.</p> <p>When you can go from not knowing an item exists, to coveting it, to buying it in under 30 seconds, having just a little bit of time for a gut check on whether or not you need this purchase is crucial. Because if you want to buy something, but getting up to find your wallet doesn't feel worth it, then it's probably not a great use of your money.</p> <h2>Save your money from yourself</h2> <p>You are not the same person at every hour of the day. You contain multitudes, and often your goals and your impulses cause you to contradict yourself. Making your money harder to spend will ensure that the high-roller part of yourself doesn't bankrupt the saver part of yourself. You'll thank yourself later. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-simple-ways-to-stop-impulse-buying?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Simple Ways to Stop Impulse Buying</a>)</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/boost-your-savings-by-making-your-money-harder-to-spend">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-an-all-cash-diet-right-for-you">Is an All-Cash Diet Right for You?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/boost-your-savings-with-this-easy-budgeting-system">Boost Your Savings With This Easy Budgeting System</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-money-moments-that-should-be-on-everyones-bucket-list">8 Money Moments That Should Be On Everyone&#039;s Bucket List</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-money-goals-you-should-set-for-the-holidays">10 Money Goals You Should Set for the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-every-single-person-needs-to-do-with-their-money">5 Things Every Single Person Needs to Do With Their Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance accountability banking cash impulse buys online shopping overspending protecting money saving money Mon, 19 Jun 2017 08:00:09 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 1965738 at http://www.wisebread.com How Single Parents Can Juggle Retirement Savings, Too http://www.wisebread.com/how-single-parents-can-juggle-retirement-savings-too <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-single-parents-can-juggle-retirement-savings-too" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-541585308.jpg" alt="Single parent learning how to juggle retirement savings" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Being a single parent is hard work. It's also expensive, with the U.S. Department of Agriculture recently reporting that the estimated cost of raising a child from birth through age 17 is $233,610. That comes out to nearly $14,000 a year.</p> <p>If you're a single parent with one income, paying for your children's clothing, food, education, and activities might not only be consuming most of your money, but most of your time, too. At the end of another long day, you might think that it's simply too difficult to plan or save for your own retirement.</p> <p>Fortunately, this isn't true. Yes, saving for retirement will be more challenging for single parents. But it can be done, and the steps to start saving and investing for retirement aren't overly difficult.</p> <p>Here are five moves single parents should make today to prepare for their future retirement.</p> <h2>1. Make a budget</h2> <p>Nothing is more important than <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/build-your-first-budget-in-5-easy-steps" target="_blank">creating a household budget</a>, and making one is simpler than you think. Once you have a budget, you'll be able to figure out how much money you can allocate to retirement savings each month.</p> <p>First, write down how much money you bring into your household every month. Next, list how much you spend. Start with your fixed expenses, which includes everything from your monthly mortgage payment to your insurance costs. Then, calculate an average cost for expenses that fluctuate. These can include utility bills, transportation, clothing, groceries, and entertainment. Don't forget to include intermittent expenses, such as haircuts and car maintenance bills, which you might think of in annual terms &mdash; find the average so you can estimate a monthly amount. Once you have these figures, you'll know how much wiggle room is left each month to put toward your retirement.</p> <p>Compiling a budget can also help you make positive changes to your overall spending habits. Maybe you'll find that you're spending more money than you're bringing in. You might then make a few small adjustments &mdash; such as eating out less, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-tv-must-haves-once-you-cut-the-cable-cord" target="_blank">cutting the cable cord</a>, or dropping a gym membership &mdash; that will free up money each month.</p> <h2>2. Start small and build an emergency fund</h2> <p>After making a budget, set aside at least some of your leftover money in the month to build an emergency fund. You'll use this fund to pay for any unexpected financial emergencies (such as a broken water heater) with cash instead of charging repairs to a credit card. The key to saving for retirement as a single parent is to avoid building debt, and nothing can derail your savings goals faster than <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-pay-off-high-interest-credit-card-debt" target="_blank">high interest credit card debt</a>. By having that emergency fund, you'll be far less likely to add big bills to your credit cards.</p> <p>You might not have much money to devote to an emergency fund. That's OK. Even if you can only save $50 a month, do it. By the end of a year, you'll have $600. That may not be a huge amount, but it's a start. Your ultimate goal should be to build an emergency fund that can cover daily living expenses for three to six months. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/change-jars-and-8-other-clever-ways-to-build-an-emergency-fund?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Change Jars and 8 Other Clever Ways to Build an Emergency Fund</a>)</p> <h2>3. Save in tax-advantaged investment vehicles</h2> <p>As a single parent, it's important to keep as many of your dollars in your household as possible. Tax-advantaged savings vehicles can help you do this.</p> <p>If your employer offers a 401(k) plan, take advantage of it. Contributions to your 401(k) are made with pretax dollars from each paycheck. This means that when you file your taxes for the year, the IRS will treat your income as smaller than it actually was. This will help lower your tax burden each year while simultaneously growing your retirement.</p> <p>You can also invest in a traditional IRA if you don't have access to a 401(k). Contributions to a traditional IRA are also made with pretax dollars, which again, will lower your taxable income.</p> <h2>4. Prioritize retirement over college savings</h2> <p>Like most parents, you probably want to give your child as much financial help as you can to get them into a good college. But too many parents save for their children's education while skimping on building their own retirement fund. This is a mistake.</p> <p>Remember, your kids have options when it comes to their education. They can attend a community college or less-expensive university, seek financial aid, or work their way through school. They might not be able to attend their dream school, but that doesn't mean they can't get a solid college education.</p> <p>You won't have as many options when it's time to leave the working world. You certainly don't want a retirement in which you're struggling to pay your bills, so you need to avoid the impulse to prioritize your child's college fund over your own retirement savings. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-saving-too-much-money-for-a-college-fund-is-a-bad-idea?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Why Saving Too Much Money for a College Fund Is a Bad Idea</a>)</p> <h2>5. Resist the temptation to overspend</h2> <p>As a single parent, it can be tempting to overspend on gifts and expensive vacations in an effort to make up for whatever challenges you and your children face. The problem is, this kind of emotional overspending can wreck your monthly budget. And when money gets tight, it's your retirement savings that often suffers.</p> <p>It's OK to treat your children, of course. But make sure these little rewards don't come at the expense of building a retirement fund.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-single-parents-can-juggle-retirement-savings-too">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-signs-youre-financially-ready-to-start-a-family">7 Signs You&#039;re Financially Ready to Start a Family</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-money-rules-every-working-adult-should-know">10 Money Rules Every Working Adult Should Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-money-lessons-kids-can-learn-from-the-tooth-fairy">7 Money Lessons Kids Can Learn From the Tooth Fairy</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-late-starters-can-save-for-their-kids-education">Here&#039;s How Late Starters Can Save for Their Kids&#039; Education</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-fun-games-that-teach-your-kids-about-money">6 Fun Games That Teach Your Kids About Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Family Retirement budgeting children college costs emergency funds investments overspending saving money single parents tax advantaged Fri, 28 Apr 2017 18:43:15 +0000 Dan Rafter 1935491 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Real Life Calamities That Can Drain Your Finances (Plus How to Defend Against Them) http://www.wisebread.com/8-real-life-calamities-that-can-drain-your-finances-plus-how-to-defend-against-them <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-real-life-calamities-that-can-drain-your-finances-plus-how-to-defend-against-them" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-515237628.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>We all work hard for our money, but if we're not careful, it can be ripped right out from under us. From getting scammed on the internet, to medical emergencies, here are eight situations that can make you broke in an instant &mdash; plus a few ways to protect yourself.</p> <h2>1. Getting scammed</h2> <p>Maybe you're smarter than the average scammer, but loads of people are too trusting and naive. In fact, someone claiming to be from eBay scammed my own mom out of a few hundred dollars via email once. She thought the email was legit because at the time she was selling items on the auction site, and she assumed the request for her banking information was not only sanctioned, but part of the company's protocol.</p> <p>&quot;Scammers target seniors because they're considered wealthy, trusting, and typically unwilling to report scams,&quot; says Roger Cowen, owner of Cowen Tax Advisory Group in Hartford, Connecticut. &quot;Common scams include callers pretending to represent Medicare or the IRS to get your personal information, and fake charity workers asking for donations.&quot;</p> <h3>How to protect yourself</h3> <p>The best way to stave off online and phone scammers is to verify that you're dealing with a reputable organization before providing any financial information. Many institutions never send emails requesting such information, and it's a policy you should adopt for yourself &mdash; never provide bank account, Social Security, or credit card numbers over email.</p> <p>If you've received a phone call asking you to verify any financial information, double check the source before handing it over to the person on the line. Jot down their name and tell them you'll call the company back at the verified number you have in your records. Beware of fake websites as well (these links are usually embedded in scam emails) by checking the domain name to make sure it's correctly spelled. Look for <strong>https:// </strong>to precede any domain that has your financial information. The &quot;s&quot; means the site is security-fortified and usually legitimate. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-when-you-suspect-a-scam" target="_blank">What to Do When You Suspect a Scam</a>)</p> <h2>2. Tax penalties</h2> <p>Getting a bill for back taxes can be devastating. You'll not only owe whatever taxes you avoided in the past &mdash; which may be substantial if you've filed inaccurate returns for years &mdash; you may owe interest and penalties as well.</p> <p>This can happen not only to filers who outright lie in an effort to buck the system, but also to well-intentioned filers who make errors on their returns.</p> <p>In either case, you'll be required to pay up in a short period of time &mdash; or go to jail. Being broke or behind bars could be your only options.</p> <h3>How to protect yourself</h3> <p>If your taxes are complicated, hire a reputable accountant, report your income and deductions accurately, accept your tax liability, and pay it. If it's a large sum, you may qualify for a payment plan. Moving forward, ask your accountant for estimated tax vouchers so you can pay ahead of time to lessen the burden when you receive the actual numbers in April. Otherwise, if you know you're looking at a sizable tax bill, save as much as you can so you can settle up with the IRS as soon as possible. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-easiest-way-to-avoid-a-tax-audit?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The Easiest Way to Avoid a Tax Audit</a>)</p> <h2>3. Divorce</h2> <p>Sometimes divorce is amicable, but for many people it isn't &mdash; and that usually means somebody has to pay up. This is primarily the case when one spouse earns more than the other, or if one partner is unemployed.</p> <h3>How to protect yourself</h3> <p>If you're getting married and one of you has a noticeably higher net worth, get a prenup. Do not walk down that aisle without it. It's not the most romantic piece of paper you'll ever sign, but you'd be a fool not to. Don't let your future spouse guilt you out of the idea, either. Love is grand, but sometimes it'll take you for everything you're worth. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-moves-to-make-the-moment-you-decide-to-get-divorced?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Money Moves to Make the Moment You Decide to Get Divorced</a>)</p> <h2>4. Death</h2> <p>No, not your death. If you're not adequately prepared for the death of a partner, child, or parent, you could end up in a sticky financial situation. There may be medical expenses leading up to the death, and afterward you'll need to cover funeral expenses and settle debts on behalf of the estate.</p> <h3>How to protect yourself</h3> <p>Life insurance is the best way to protect yourself in the event that your spouse, parent, or child dies. If you're the beneficiary, you'll receive your policy payout, which creditors typically cannot come after, to cover expenses and any debts for which you may also be on the hook, like a mortgage. Use this money to satisfy loans that the deceased may have had, especially if you've co-signed for them. If it's your spouse that has passed away, you may be losing half your household income &mdash; maybe even more than that &mdash; so it's important to use the policy money wisely. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-why-life-insurance-isnt-just-for-old-people?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Reasons Why Life Insurance Is for Everyone</a>)</p> <h2>5. Market crash</h2> <p>Many people have improved their lot in life by taking financial risks. But if you're an investor at any level, you worry about going bust. Any number of things can happen that will affect your bottom line, depending on how deep your investments go. The stock market can crash, taking your life savings with it. The real estate bubble can burst, leaving you on the hook for houses you can't sell. The worst part is there are often no warning signs. One day you're swimming in cash like Scrooge McDuck, and the next day you're looking under couch cushions for loose change.</p> <h3>How to protect yourself</h3> <p>Don't put all your eggs in one basket, don't overextend your credit, don't take on more expense than you can afford, and, above all, don't get cocky with your money. Devise a plan to weather a financial crisis so you'll be prepared well ahead of time. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-prepare-for-a-stock-market-dive?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Ways to Prepare for a Stock Market Dive</a>)</p> <h2>6. Natural disaster</h2> <p>While we can sort of predict the weather, we can't predict the outcome. Any number of things can happen to you, your home, or your personal property during a bad storm or natural disaster that may leave you strapped for cash or even facing a total rebuild.</p> <h3>How to protect yourself</h3> <p>If you live in an area where certain calamities are possible, purchase the proper insurance. Your homeowners insurance may cover certain events, but you may require special policies for others, like floods, earthquakes, and hurricanes. Consider what you're at risk for and put a policy in place. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-surprising-things-your-homeowners-insurance-doesnt-cover?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Surprising Things Your Homeowners Insurance Doesn't Cover</a>)</p> <h2>7. Spending more than you make</h2> <p>Sometimes, your biggest financial enemy is yourself. We like our things in America, and many of us will go to great lengths to get those things &mdash; including spending more money than we have. According to NerdWallet, the average household has $134,643 in debt. Households that carry credit card debt pay about $1,300 a year in interest alone on balances that average $16,748. These statistics represent an 11 percent debt increase over the past decade. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/fastest-way-to-pay-off-10000-in-credit-card-debt?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The Fastest Way to Pay Off $10,000 in Credit Card Debt</a>)</p> <h3>How to protect yourself</h3> <p>Find ways to make more money or live on less (or both). There are many ways you can introduce a second source of income to your household, like <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-11-best-websites-for-renting-your-extra-space" target="_blank">renting out your extra space</a>, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-earn-extra-money-driving-for-uber-or-lyft" target="_blank">driving for ride-sharing operations</a>, or pet sitting. But if you don't want to work constantly, consider cutting back on your overall expenses. You don't need everything you see, and the faster you recognize that the better off your bank account will be. Plus, you might even be happier as a result.</p> <h2>8. Medical emergency</h2> <p>American health care is in flux right now, which means that you have to be extra vigilant in making sure you're covered. Just one trip to the hospital can set you back financially for years if you're not prepared, perhaps even more if you require long-term care.</p> <h3>How to protect yourself</h3> <p>Cover yourself. You may have to bite the bullet on the premium, but at least you're insured. You can go to the doctor or hospital when you need to, and your care will (hopefully) be covered to an affordable extent. Not having insurance, on the other hand, may very well be a death sentence &mdash; or at least you'll wish it were when you get the bill in full.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-real-life-calamities-that-can-drain-your-finances-plus-how-to-defend-against-them">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-times-you-need-to-update-your-will">6 Times You Need to Update Your Will</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-when-you-suspect-a-scam">What to Do When You Suspect a Scam</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-protect-elderly-loved-ones-from-financial-scams">How to Protect Elderly Loved Ones From Financial Scams</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-signs-your-identity-was-stolen">9 Signs Your Identity Was Stolen</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-you-disrespect-your-money">10 Ways You Disrespect Your Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance audits death disasters divorce emergencies fraud going broke life insurance market crash medical bills overspending scams Tue, 25 Apr 2017 20:00:09 +0000 Mikey Rox 1931272 at http://www.wisebread.com Is an All-Cash Diet Right for You? http://www.wisebread.com/is-an-all-cash-diet-right-for-you <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/is-an-all-cash-diet-right-for-you" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-170955646.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>An all-cash diet is pretty much exactly what it sounds like: You pay cash for all of your daily expenses. The idea is that it makes you more conscious of your spending than if you use debit or credit cards. But an all-cash diet isn't necessarily right for everyone. Let's go over how this budgeting strategy might work for you.</p> <h2>How Does It Work?</h2> <p>Once you've <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/build-your-first-budget-in-5-easy-steps?ref=internal" target="_blank">created a budget</a>, you need to determine how much income you have left every month after you've paid your fixed expenses, such as rent, utilities, debt payments, and insurance. This is the amount of money you can use for things like groceries, gas, and other day-to-day expenses during the month. You can then withdraw this amount in cash to spend on these expenses over the next four weeks. It's important that you allocate your cash properly so that you don't end up spending it all in one category at one time.</p> <p>To make it easy, consider splitting up your monthly allotment into four envelopes, one for each week. You may not spend all of the money in the envelope each week. For example, maybe you didn't drive much that week, and didn't need to stop for gas. In that case, more surplus means more for your savings.</p> <p>If you are worried about leaving that much cash in your home, then just make a trip to your ATM on the same day every week to withdraw the money for your weekly spending. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-comprehensive-guide-to-the-envelope-system?ref=seealso" target="_blank">A Comprehensive Guide to the Envelope System</a>)</p> <h2>The Benefits</h2> <p>The ultimate goal of this lifestyle change is to have cash left over at the end of the month, which you can use to pay off debt or devote to savings and investments. There is a range of short- and long-term benefits associated with the strategy, too.</p> <h3>1. Helps You Cut Spending</h3> <p>Multiple studies have shown that people spend more when they use a credit card than when they <a href="http://web.mit.edu/simester/Public/Papers/Alwaysleavehome.pdf" target="_blank">pay with cash</a>. That's because when you use cash, you have a better feeling for just how much you're spending than when you use so-called invisible money (debit or credit cards).</p> <p>By physically handing over cash for your purchases, you see the money leave your possession. Hence, you're much more likely to consider on the spot if the purchase is really worth it. Alternatively, when you use a card, you don't really feel the effect of a purchase until later, when you receive your credit card bill or see the transaction online. That can make it easier to overspend with plastic.</p> <p>If you regularly go over your monthly budget and can't seem to figure out why, then switching to an all-cash diet can quickly help you pinpoint exactly where your money's going. Using cash can encourage you to only buy what you really need and avoid impulse purchases. This is especially helpful if you tend to go on shopping sprees and overspend when you're stressed, upset, or anxious.</p> <h3>2. Reduces Some Fraud and Charging Errors</h3> <p>Using cash also reduces the chance of accidental overcharging, or worse, fraud by retail and restaurant staff. Stores and restaurants do occasionally unintentionally double charge your card, and wait staff have been known to steal credit card data. It is usually not until we get home or are balancing our checkbooks later that we realize the error or fraud, and by then it can be difficult to correct. Alternatively, using cash ensures that you're never in that situation.</p> <h3>3. Streamlines Store Returns</h3> <p>When you're making a return with a card, you usually need to have the exact card that you paid with. On the other hand, if you paid with cash, you can quickly get the refund in cash.</p> <h3>4. Reduces Overdraft Fees</h3> <p>If you're prone to accidentally overspending on your debit card and then having to deal with overdraft fees, an all-cash diet may help you. You <em>can </em>still overdraw your account by taking too much money out at the ATM, but you're less likely to do that by mistake, especially if you only take out a certain amount every week. Over time, you can save quite a bit on what would have otherwise been wasted on overdraft fees.</p> <h2>When to Use Credit Cards</h2> <p>Even if you decide to stick to an all-cash diet indefinitely, there are some times to make exceptions and use credit cards. This is a particularly true if you're trying to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-use-credit-cards-to-improve-your-credit-score?ref=internal" target="_blank">improve your credit score, </a>since using credit cards responsibly is an easy way to build credit. But you don't have to charge a lot to get the credit score benefit (in fact, it's better if you keep your <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-one-ratio-is-the-key-to-a-good-credit-score?ref=internal" target="_blank">credit utilization</a> low), so you could still use cash for out-of-pocket expenses and charge one or two monthly expenses, such as your Internet and electricity bills, to your credit card. Just make sure you pay those charges off in full and on time every month.</p> <p>In fact, even if your credit score is good, you may want to keep at least one credit card open and active to help maintain your score, especially if you don't have a mortgage or other loans you're paying. It's also good to have a credit card on hand for online purchases (credit cards are safer than debit for web shopping), car rentals, and for emergencies. To keep the account open you'll need to continue using it occasionally. Again, a good way to do this is by charging a monthly expense to your credit card and paying it off in full.</p> <p>If you're racking up <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">travel rewards</a>, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/everything-you-need-to-know-about-frequent-flyer-miles?ref=internal" target="_blank">frequent flyer miles</a>, or <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-cash-back-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">cash back</a> on a particular credit card, then you may still want to use that card for certain purchases. For example, if you earn extra points for travel expenses, then you may want to continue using your card for these types of purchases. You can also use a rewards credit card for large purchases. Not only is it safer than carrying around large amounts of cash, you'll also earn a big bunch of points for that expensive purchase.</p> <p>Some credit cards also offer <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-awesome-credit-card-perks-you-didnt-know-about?ref=internal" target="_blank">additional benefits</a>, such as free travel insurance and rental car insurance. If you need these services, then it's better to use a credit card that offers them for free than to pay extra for them with cash.</p> <h2>Give It a Try</h2> <p>You don't have to devote your life to the all-cash diet right away. Consider just trying it for two to three months to see how much you can save.</p> <p>If you find that you're running out of cash midweek or are still regularly reaching for your credit cards, you may want to re-evaluate your spending habits altogether. Even if you find that the all-cash diet is not right for you, it can help you get a better handle on how much you're spending and how to improve your budget.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-an-all-cash-diet-right-for-you">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-reasons-youre-still-stuck-in-a-financial-hole">8 Reasons You&#039;re Still Stuck in a Financial Hole</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-manage-your-money-no-budgeting-required">How to Manage Your Money — No Budgeting Required</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/boost-your-savings-with-this-easy-budgeting-system">Boost Your Savings With This Easy Budgeting System</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-come-up-with-1000-in-the-next-30-days">How to Come Up With $1,000 in the Next 30 Days</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-start-a-family-before-reaching-these-5-money-goals">Don&#039;t Start a Family Before Reaching These 5 Money Goals</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Budgeting cash diet credit score Envelope system expenses overdraft fees overspending paying in cash saving money Mon, 06 Mar 2017 10:00:11 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1902771 at http://www.wisebread.com 4 Reasons to Cut Yourself Some Slack Following a Financial Setback http://www.wisebread.com/4-reasons-to-cut-yourself-some-slack-following-a-financial-setback <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/4-reasons-to-cut-yourself-some-slack-following-a-financial-setback" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_stressed_posture_532326842.jpg" alt="Woman learning to cut herself slack for a financial setback" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>So, you fell off your financial wagon. It's particularly easy to do this time of year, though financial mistakes aren't necessarily seasonal.</p> <p>It's easy to beat yourself up over these things, even if you understand why your mistake happened. But what purpose does that serve? Does making yourself feel bad about a mistake actually make it less likely to happen again, or help you fix it?</p> <p>Whether you messed up because you are stressed, going through a difficult time personally, or wanted to give your kids an extra-special Christmas, stop berating yourself. Still prone to indulging your shame and guilt? Here are some good reasons to let it go.</p> <h2>Failure Almost Always Precedes Success</h2> <p>While true overnight success does occasionally happen, it's often more fluke than anything else. True success &mdash; even when it looks like it comes quickly &mdash; usually happens after many rounds of failure. In fact, ultimate success may be more about perseverance than it is about talent.</p> <p>Even well-known people, like Steve Jobs and Bob Dylan, faced setbacks and failures before they became successful. So, rather than being frustrated with yourself, see yourself as normal. Then, when you're ready, get up and try again and again and again until you find a way to meet your goals.</p> <h2>Failure Helps You Become Resilient</h2> <p>Being resilient means that life can knock you down, but you always get back up stronger than before. It means surviving and thriving in a world that often doesn't give you what you need or want. Some people seem to have this characteristic in spades, but the rest of us have to develop it.</p> <p>Failure is one way to become more resilient. As you weather failures, you learn how to deal with them and with yourself. You will learn how to let life's disappointments wash over you, and then how to step out again once they're done.</p> <p>If you've failed financially, whether your fall was spectacular or quiet, remember that each failure makes you a little more resilient, and then determine to get yourself back on your feet, no matter what.</p> <h2>Failure Invites Creativity</h2> <p>When we fail, it means that the solution we used to try to solve whatever problem stands before us didn't work, and so we have to figure something else out and try again. When we do this, we are exercising our creative muscles, because we are coming up with multiple ways to solve the same problem.</p> <p>Look at your financial failure as the problem to be solved. Whether you want to save more, spend less, pay off a debt faster, or something else, failure means that the plan you're currently using is not one that is working for you. So take a deep breath and start brainstorming. Think of other ways to achieve your goals, even if they seem a little crazy right now.</p> <p>Once you have a list of ideas, pick one to try next. For instance, if you struggle to save an emergency fund, consider using an app that saves for you automatically. If you want to spend less on drinks after work, come up with alternate activities to try with your coworkers. Most problems have a solution; you just have to find the one that works best for you.</p> <h2>Failure Teaches Us</h2> <p>If nothing else, failure often teaches us. Not only does it show us what does not work to solve a problem, but it also teaches us about ourselves. Failure can show us our limitations, it can reveal our resiliency, and it can tell us a lot regarding how we feel about ourselves.</p> <p>There is a lot of focus on learning from failure as part of the pathway to success and, while that can definitely be true, learning from failure can also redefine success. Let's say you want to save up enough money for a luxury car. You're diligent about putting away what you can, until Christmas comes around. Then, you see all sorts of awesome gifts you want to give to the people in your life. To buy them, you will have to dip into your savings&hellip; and you do it without a second thought.</p> <p>Sure, you may feel like you failed. After all, you didn't reach your goal. And you may have learned that you need to make your savings less accessible, so you can't dip into them so easily. But you also may have learned that you care more about people than you do about cars, and so you may choose to redefine success from &quot;saving enough for a luxury car&quot; to &quot;having plenty saved to buy luxurious Christmas gifts.&quot;</p> <p>Whatever failure has to teach you, stop beating yourself up and learn it!</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-reasons-to-cut-yourself-some-slack-following-a-financial-setback">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-mental-habits-that-make-the-rich-richer">5 Mental Habits That Make the Rich Richer</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-an-all-cash-diet-right-for-you">Is an All-Cash Diet Right for You?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/boost-your-savings-with-this-easy-budgeting-system">Boost Your Savings With This Easy Budgeting System</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-build-financial-stability-after-divorce">How to Build Financial Stability After Divorce</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-golden-rules-of-personal-finance-everyone-should-know">10 Golden Rules of Personal Finance Everyone Should Know</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Lifestyle emotional failures financial mistakes overspending psychology resilient saving money setbacks Mon, 23 Jan 2017 10:00:17 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1876849 at http://www.wisebread.com