Dads, grads, and jobs: Thoughts on sticking to your budget while still enjoying the summer season

June budgeting

School is ending. Temperatures are rising. Some are going on vacation, some are going to camp, and some are going to work. A lot of us are still just going to work. There are also people yelling at their televisions as we are in the NBA Finals, the Stanley Cup, and Women’s World Cup. We are in June, a month that usually goes by too quick and is oft forgot – it’s the month in between Memorial Day and July 4th for us hard workers — but that doesn’t mean things aren’t happening.   Travel and credit cards   June is the start time for a lot of travel — I just had two different friends come to visit last week, and have two more visiting this week — but travel isn’t exactly cheap. Plane tickets can be hundreds of dollars, plus the cost of hotels, car rentals, dining, … [Read more...]

5 Totally painless ways to save money

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  It’s one of those things that sounds easy in theory. Just don’t spend so much on groceries – easy peasy! Next thing you know you’re in a Whole Foods on an empty stomach and nothing sounds better than organic, fair-trade chocolate infused with espresso and shipped directly from Brazil. 15 impulse buys later and you’re walking away with a one-night smorgasbord and 100 less dollars to your name.   Turns out, saving money is hard. It’s like your mother always told you, if it was easy everybody would be doing it. And just to be clear: A lot of you aren’t saving money. According to a study conducted by Bankrate.com1, over a quarter of Americans have no savings at all. Of those that do have savings, 67% don’t have enough to cover 6 months of expenses. If this sounds like you, … [Read more...]

3 Commonly broken financial New Year’s resolutions (and how you can keep them)

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According to Fidelity’ annual New Year’s Financial Resolutions Study, 51% of Americans who made financial New Year’s resolutions in 2014 said they were better off financially today. That means financial New Year’s resolutions might actually work!   Of course, that also leaves the 49% who either stuck to their resolutions and found themselves no better off than they were last year or (more likely) suffered a rare form of acute amnesia affecting the memory centers of the brain responsible for remembering New Year’s resolutions.   A year is a long time. Sticking to your financial resolutions is hard, but it’s even harder if you set impossible-to-reach goals and give up on them altogether. So if you’re determined to improve your financial health next year, resolve to take … [Read more...]

Word on the web: September 2014

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You can’t fight it; the holidays are on their way. From October to January, temptations to your wallet, savings and budget will be hitting you at full force. It’s probably a good time to remind yourself about the importance of financial fitness and the path to reaching your financial goals. To help you with your cause, we’ve gathered the top personal finance blogs from September. Enjoy!     Defeating your debt for good Carrying a manageable amount of debt isn’t a bad thing, but many people overspend and over-borrow until they find themselves completely buried. Even when the debt finally gets paid off, they go back to their overspending habits. ModestMoney.com is here to help. Check out this post on how to defeat your debt for good by taking actionable steps towards … [Read more...]

Funding your child’s K-12 education

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We hear a great deal about student loans—there are ample ways for eligible borrowers to secure loans for college tuition. What we hear very little about is how to pay for private school, boarding school, and other educational institutions for students who are still in grades K-12. That is an important financial concern for many parents, especially now with school right around the corner. Many parents want to ensure the best possible K-12 education either because the district school is facing budget cuts or other hardship or in order to prepare a child for college and improve their chances of acceptance into elite universities.   Your Tuition Solution is one viable option. For the past 10 years, Your Tuition Solution has been a provider of education loans with flexible payment … [Read more...]

4 Tips for a budget-friendly work week

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Saving a healthy budget is a lot different than actually sticking to a healthy budget. It’s a lot like dieting in that way. I know I shouldn’t eat that cookie, but it looks SO GOOD.  If you really want to stick to that 300-line spreadsheet you spent hours perfecting (or maybe you simply opted to spend 10 minutes in a budgeting app… still counts!), you’ve got to break unhealthy habits, make changes and start disciplining yourself. The cushy savings account you accumulate will be worth the hard work. I promise.     Although a challenging work week can often distract your from overspending, the stress can backfire and result in splurge decisions and breaking budget.  Don’t cave in. Take these three tips to make sure you stick to your budget—at least from Monday to … [Read more...]

Moving and money: One year later

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  When I first started at myFICO over a year ago, it required the largest change in my life— moving 3000 miles by myself to a state where I didn’t know anyone. I had to figure out how to get my first apartment by myself, change banks and a lot of other new financial issues. I recorded most of these in the first part of the series, Moving and Money – Getting Cash, and I hope some of you learned from my trials and were prepared for your own experiences.     Well here I am a year later. I am still in the same apartment, but I’m officially considering moving again. I have a fully furnished apartment, so I would definitely need to sell/donate a lot of items and compare mover expenses. I have a lot to consider, but now I know a bit more. For those of you like me, … [Read more...]

5 Personal finance tips for millennials

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So people keep calling you a millennial (some say it with a nicer tone than others). Amongst a variety of other defining characteristics, you have the unique (albeit unwelcomed) experience of graduating into a recession. Cons? Lower starting salaries and a lack of options. Pros? You’ve seen what irresponsible money management can do and you don’t want to make the same mistakes.     You’re also a victim of the tuition bubble, burdened with hefty student loan payments and a 30-year payoff plan that might as well be a mortgage. Now before you get out the violin, keep in mind that your generation is also relentlessly optimistic, savvy and smart, making you a force to be reckoned with in the workplace (conceal your ego though, please). If nothing else, we can assume your … [Read more...]

6 Tips to cut the cost of your job search

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Are you currently on the hunt for a new job or career? If so, you're not alone. According to a survey conducted by CareerBuilder, 21% of full-time working Americans plan on changing jobs this year.   In your zest to find a new position though, it can be easy to let expenses get the better of you—and if you're unemployed, of course, conserving money is absolutely essential. Regardless of your current situation, here are six ways to cut the cost of your job search.   #1. Carefully Consider the Benefits of Headhunters Back in the day, headhunters provided invaluable services to job seekers. However, with the expansion of the Internet, you can actually do a lot of this legwork on your own now.   Of course, if you're juggling too many responsibilities to tackle a … [Read more...]

7 Strategies for Spring Cleaning Finances: Spring Cleaning Part 2

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Now that we've hopefully turned the page on winter, it's time to switch our collective attention to spring. The winter thaw means different things to different people. It can mean spring break, getting outside and enjoying activities with family and friends, and it can also mean doing some organizing.   Just like it's important to clean behind your bookcases, beds, and couches, you'd also be doing yourself a big favor by spring cleaning your finances. (We wrote about spring cleaning your credit, too.) Here are seven strategies to get started.   1. Get an Organizational System in Place If you don't already have a filing system in your home office, set one up now. You can get a scanner, digitize your documents, and store them in folders on your hard drive or a … [Read more...]

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