As young people we tend to not consider how much we are spending before it is too late. We have all gone on to our bank’s online banking and shocked by the account balance; as it is often much lower than we anticipated. This is an awful feeling that can be avoided if we have a budget set up. Budgeting is not only important for avoiding overdraft fees but also to have money set aside to pay for bills and mandatory spending. Budgeting can be difficult especially if you are out with friends. Your money count can easily get away from you and soon you could be overspending and not following your budget. Here are some ways to stick with your budget.
Use software such as Quicken. There are quite a few online options that you can use such as Quicken that are designed to keep track of your spending and give you reminders on your current budget situation and helping you stay on track. There are quite a few different ones such as Mint.com that can also be done on your mobile phone. Doing some research can tell you what your best option is for your situation.
Make a list of things you like to do that do not cost money. Another great way to save yourself from overspending is by making a list of things you like to do that are free. That way when you are feeling the urge to spend money you have a visual that can help you try something a little more economical. Your list can consist of anything from exercising to watching tv to reading a book. The possibilities are endless but they can save you a pretty penny.
Negotiating with yourself. Sometimes it can be hard to stick to your budget. For instance maybe you allow yourself $200 for food and $100 for fun and you really want to go on a trip that is going to cost you $150. Despite going over budget on fun you can still stay on track overall if you deduct $50 from food costs. What you must do is weigh your options and make a pros and cons list that will help you make good decisions when it comes to negotiating with yourself.
Salvaging your budget when it goes south. Sometimes you may be over budget in an overall sense and it can be hard to getting back to even and saving a month from overspending. One thing that you can do is to round up old items that you no longer want and selling them on eBay or another similar site. That way you will be able to gain a little money back if in the event that you go over your allowed amount. If you have a job, see if you can pick up some overtime that week.
Keeping a budget and sticking to it can be a difficult task but an important one. You must have a backup plan to have in the event that you overspend and even a plan to avoid overspending would be ideal as well. Being able to negotiate with yourself is important part of keeping a budget. Knowing your limits is important so make a plan and stick with it.
Before you get a credit card you should consider the risks that can be involved, especially if you do not have a lot of income. There are quite a few things you need to consider before you go and sign up for a credit card, otherwise you could be setting yourself up for failure and hurting your credit score. Not to mention reversing credit score damage can take years and years making you pay higher interest along the way simply because you did not consider the risks of credit before enrolling.
Credit is not free money. Often when someone gets a credit card for the first time they feel as though they have “free money” because there is no immediate payment for your purchases. Next thing you know they are racking up quite a balance that they can not afford to pay off. Now those purchases that you paid for are costing you more because of the interest they are adding up due to not paying off your balance.
Monitor your credit score. Many people have credit cards opened in their name and don’t even know it. It is very hard to know if someone has stolen your identity and racking up credit on your behalf, unless you monitor your credit. I am signed up for a credit monitoring service that will alert me when anything changes on my report. If my score or a new card is opened, it will let me know so that I can take action and make sure my credit isn’t ruined for life. I highly recommend checking your report every once in a while just to make sure you aren’t being taken advantage of. If you want to use the same agency I do, then check out IdentityForce.
High interest rate. Before you sign up for a credit card, take a look at the interest rate that will be charged if you do not pay off your balance. This is often overlooked for new credit card holders because they either do not understand when interest will be paid or they believe they will be able to pay off their balance every cycle. Regardless of your situation you need to still look at the interest rate. Do not get pulled into a card for its “rewards” if it charges a hefty interest rate. Most of the time, the rewards are not worth the risk.
Annual fee and misc fees. Today’s world of credit it is very common to see many no annual fee credit cards. These are the cards that you should apply for. If the card you are interested in charges an annual fee it may be worth exploring other cards. Aside from an annual fee it is good to look at the other fees they charge because you do not want to be blindsided by a fee that could have been avoided if you did some basic research. Miscellaneous fees could be denied payment fee, returned check fee, foreign transaction, and even worse, reward redemption fee. If you are being charges for redeeming your rewards, look for another card.
Before getting your first credit card or a new credit card it is best to do some basic research and fully understanding what you are getting yourself into. Credit companies are infamous for hidden fees that can add up to make a big difference. Don’t be another casualty, read the fee structure of the card and make sure you are not ripping yourself off. Remember, credit cards are not free money and they can come back to bite you if you are not careful and considerate of the risks that are involved. Your financial future can be strongly decided by actions that you do today, be cautious.
You see it everywhere, “read how I made $100,000 day trading”. Naturally, this peak your interest into researching more into day trading. For those of you who do not know what day trading is, its trading stocks or currency within a day to catch a large upward or downward movement. Seems simple enough right? Wrong. Day trading is extremely risky if you do not know what you are doing and things can take a turn for the worst in a matter of moments. Before you venture into the world of day trading you should consider these points:
- You are not an investor, you are a trader. There is a distinct difference between being an investor and being a trader. An investor believes in the company’s mission and fundamentals, usually for the long term. A trader looks at short term trends such as technical analysis or blowout earnings. In order to be successful you must know the difference and decide which side you belong on.
- Day trading is a full-time job. That’s right, you are at the computer from market open to market close, five days a week. If you have a job this can’t really be accomplished. Trading is your job, your livelihood and it must trump everything if you want to be successful.
- Dependence on margin. Day traders depend on margin or borrowed money on their trades. The problem with this is if a trade goes south and you get a margin call from your broker (basically the brokerage wants its loan back) and you do not have the capital available, they can liquidate your holdings to pay for the margin money. Trading on margin increases your risk tenfold.
- Do not depend on “newsletters”. There are quite a few of those “expert” newsletters that give trade recommendations and such but those are quite often more costly than helpful. They often charge a large premium for access to the recommendations and then the trades do not even work out. Anyone that promises results when you purchase their product should be viewed with extreme caution.
- 90% of all day traders do not make it. This is probably the most important aspect when it comes to the risks of day trading, most people do not make it out alive. The odds against you are overwhelming and there is not a lot that you can do. The stats speak for themselves and if you choose to go ahead and try this out you must know this statistic going into the venture. This is because when you day trade you better have a winner that not only pays for the buying and selling commissions but also for a little profits for your efforts. This is often not the case which is why most people do not make it.
When you go to trade the market it is a good idea to know everything you can; different trading styles, investing or trading, etc. Most people do not do their research and often go into a risky area such as day trading with little to no knowledge of the risks involve, which will cost you dearly.