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Last Updated on by Noni May
Welcome to the ultimate guide to money! This is an easy-to-understand resource that can help you get familiar with personal finance and how to manage your money. It covers everything from choosing a bank account, budgeting, building credit, investing, saving, debt, crypto, FIRE and more.
We’ll talk about how to start investing in your future, how to apply for loans and credit cards, and even how to negotiate a better deal on your student loans or salary. I’ve written a couple of hundred blog posts about money and finance, so it’s time to make an Ultimate Guide that includes the most up-to-date information.
Let’s get started with the basics.
You need a plan for a brighter financial future.
Think about it this way: if you want to get better at basketball, you wouldn’t just go play pickup games on the weekend. You’d practice shooting every day and work on your dribbling skills and play in games that didn’t count toward anything but were still important for building experience. You’d have a plan for what drills and exercises you would do each day, where you would practice them, who would be there with you, what goals were realistic over the next few months (and years).
If we want to get better at something—whether it’s basketball or cooking or gardening or money management—the best way is through practice and repetition. It’s not easy in the beginning, but like anything else worth doing well, eventually habits become part of our lives and we can fall into routines without even thinking about them anymore. Are you someone who’s always broke? This might be the reason why you’re always broke so you can do something about it. But it’s also good to create a financial strategy to plan for the future:
Making a budget is a personal process. You’ll have to decide what’s most important, and which expenses you can live without. It’s also helpful to look at your monthly bills and see if there are any ways that you can save money by lowering your payments or increasing your credit limit.
How much does it cost to live? A good rule of thumb is that you should aim for spending around 50% of your income on housing, transportation costs (including gas), food, healthcare and other necessities like phone plans and internet access. If this seems like too much then consider prioritising these categories first before spending the rest on entertainment or clothing purchases!
An emergency fund is a source of money that you can use in the event of an unexpected expense. It’s different from your regular savings account in that it’s dedicated exclusively to financial emergencies, and it should be kept separate from your normal spending money. The purpose of an emergency fund is to ensure that you’re never caught off guard by a sudden unforeseen need for cash.
According to some experts, you should have enough money set aside in your emergency fund so that if something goes wrong and things get particularly bad for a while (say, if someone gets sick), they can get back on their feet again without having to resort to credit cards or payday loans.
Keeping your bills low is the secret trick in life to get you ahead. It’s also known as ‘live below your means’. Because with bills I also mean expenses. Here are a few tips on how to keep your bills low:
If you’re looking to build up your bank account and grow your money, it’s important to create multiple income streams. And you don’t always have to get a second job, you can earn money from home. This is very important to become financial independent.
Why? Because multiple income streams are good for your financial health. If you can’t find a job, start a side hustle. If you have a job, find a side hustle. If you have a side hustle, find another side hustle.
When people think about starting their own business or freelance career, they sometimes worry that they won’t be able to make enough money at first—or ever—to support themselves financially if they quit working for someone else. This is where creating multiple income streams comes in handy: by adding more sources of revenue into the mix (and eventually eliminating some), things will get easier from there on out!
Now, there are a huge number of ways to make a little extra money, but here are a few you might really want to take into consideration. I have listed Alternative Ways to Make Money Right Now and 50+ side-hustle ideas to help you in the right direction.
Whether you use an app or keep track of your spending on paper, tracking your money is an important part of becoming financially literate. And though it sounds daunting at first, it’s actually pretty simple: all you have to do is write down what you spend each month. That’s all!
For some people, this can be overwhelming at first because they didn’t realize how easy it really is. If accountants were allowed to write “you’re welcome” in their notes field for clients who paid them $1 million dollars without having any idea how much money was in their bank accounts until after the fact, then we can definitely handle tracking our own spending habits as well.
Make a savings plan for big expenses and long-term goals. If you’re looking to put money away for a new car, a home, or retirement, start thinking about the steps that will get you there. A good rule of thumb is to save 10% of your income—but if you can’t manage that much, start by saving at least 3%. Once that’s in place, try adding 1% every year until you reach your goal amount. You should also make sure whatever money is left over from bills goes into savings account rather than being spent on something else.
While it’s not always possible to save money on everything, there are a number of ways to save some extra cash in your wallet. Here are some tips:
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Debt can feel like a millstone around our necks and it’s all too easy to get discouraged. But don’t give up! If you’re really upset and worried, you might wonder “Can bankruptcy wipe all my debts?”. We have many different ways to pay off debt, but all of them rely on sticking with a plan and the determination to succeed.
Focus on one debt at a time. You should pay off debts in order of what will save you the most money. The best way to determine this is to use a debt repayment calculator, which can be found online, or by using one of the many financial apps available. There are a few strategies to pay-off debt, you can decide which one suits you best.
When you’re looking to pay off your debt, it’s tempting to think that the most efficient way is to pay off your smallest balance first. In other words: “If I can’t beat them, join them!” This may work for some people, but not all. Let’s look at what happens when you pay off your smallest balance first.
Let’s say you have three debts: $5,000 in credit card debt with a 20% APR; $7,500 in student loans at 6% APR; and $1,000 on a car loan at 2%. You decide to focus on paying down the credit card debt first because it has the lowest interest rate (a mistake). You spend two years paying off this debt before moving onto the car loan because it has the second-lowest interest rate (another mistake). And then another year goes by before tackling your student loans because they are still higher than both of those debts (oops!). So now instead of having one chunkier payment every month and being able to put more money towards each individual bill over time with compound interest working for us instead of against us—we’ve made things worse! By focusing primarily on reducing our highest-interest rate debt first we end up spending twice as much time paying off smaller amounts each month than we would have had we just paid everything equally without regard for interest rates or balances.
Paying more than the minimum balance on your credit cards is the best way to get out of debt. But don’t just pay off the minimum balance and forget about the rest. You’ll be paying interest on all of your debt, even if it’s not very much. Your credit card company will still charge you interest on that remaining balance until it’s paid off. That might take a few years longer than necessary!
The next step is to find extra money to help you pay down your debt faster. You can do this by reducing your expenses and finding additional cash sources that are not already being used for essential items.
Here are some ideas:
If your debt is out of control, you may need to get help. There are many options for people struggling with debt, but the first step is to contact an experienced credit counselor or a debt management company. They can advise you on what avenue makes the most sense for your specific situation.
Some common options include:
To be successful, you need to have a plan and stick with it. Don’t give up and realize that it will take time. You should also be determined to succeed in getting out of debt. You can pay off your debt using a number of different strategies. It’s important to remember that there is no one size fits all plan, so don’t get discouraged if something isn’t working for you. The most important thing is that you stick with it and keep trying new things until something works!
When you focus on saving money, working a lot more to get more income and paying off debt life can get really serious, stressful and boring. You’re saving money by never going out anymore, you’re working 60 hours a week and you’re too tired to go out after. Make sure you keep treating yourself. Life is also about living! There are ways to save and treat yourself at the same time. For example:
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For many people, retirement seems like a distant dream. The prospect of dreaming about that time in the future can seem so far away it doesn’t make sense to start planning now. However, preparing for your financial future needs to start as early as possible so you can reap the benefits when you are old enough to enjoy them. As a self-employed person you have some unique opportunities to start saving up for retirement and maximizing your savings. Learn more about what options are available and how they may fit with your current lifestyle and financial realities:
One of the biggest financial questions you’ll face is, “How am I going to pay for my retirement?” The good news is that there are many ways you can start putting money away for your later years. Let’s talk about what a 401(k) is and how it works, why it’s so important to start saving early and contributing often, how much of your income should go into a 401(k), and the drawbacks of putting most or all of your retirement savings in a 401(k). But also about FIRE, saving for retirement if you’re self-employed and more!
Pensions are types of retirement plans that allow you to save money for your future. Pensions can be either defined benefit or defined contribution plans, and the latter are usually offered by employers.
Laying good groundwork early on can pay off in the long term. If you can save some money for retirement when you’re young, it gives your funds more time to grow. And the longer you save, the more you’ll have for your golden years.
So if you want to retire comfortably and leave money behind for loved ones—or even just a few extra coins for a fancier cup of coffee—try these tips from financial experts:
The best way to start investing for your retirement is to open a 401(k). A 401(k) is a type of retirement plan offered by employers, and may be offered to employees as part of their compensation package. It’s called a “retirement” plan because you can only put money into it if you’re over the age of 18–you can’t open one when you’re under 18 years old.
A 401(k) is tax-deferred, meaning that any money that goes into it will not be taxed until you withdraw it in retirement (which happens at age 59 1/2). This means that every year, when you file your tax return and report how much money went into your 401(k), less taxes are taken out than would normally apply if all those dollars were being paid out immediately.
If your employer offers a 401(k) match, you should be taking advantage of it. A “401(k) match” means that your employer will give you extra money each month if you contribute to your 401(k). For example, if you get a 50% match on the first 6% of your salary that you contribute, then this means that for every dollar that goes into your retirement savings plan up until 6%, the company will add another 50 cents so that together with the 6% total, there’s now over 7% in total being contributed.
Consider these examples:
Because of these matches and other benefits offered by employers for retirement plans like 401ks or 403bs (which are basically just fancy names for 401ks), it’s important not only for individuals but also organizations as a whole to encourage saving as much as possible early on in one’s career.
Pre-tax contributions are known as “traditional” retirement investments. Pre-tax contributions are sometimes called “traditional” retirement investments.
A Roth IRA is a retirement investment account that allows you to set aside post-tax money which will then grow tax-free. You can’t withdraw funds until you are at least 59½ years old and have had the account open for at least 5 years. After age 70½, any withdrawals would be subject to ordinary income tax on earnings along with a 10% penalty fee.
To open a Roth IRA you’ll need $5,000 or more in cash. You can deposit your contribution into one account or divide it up between multiple accounts depending on what works best for your financial strategy (withdrawals from one versus many accounts). The maximum amount allowed per year is $5,500 ($6,000 if over 50) which means each year investors have the option of contributing anywhere from $5k-$6k depending on their age bracket! This makes them attractive for young professionals who want to take advantage of compounding interest early on their careers – allowing them to retire sooner than their peers who may not start investing until much later in life (or never).
When investing in an IRA there are two main types: traditional & Roth IRAs; both offer unique benefits but come with different restrictions as well so it’s important to understand what makes each type unique before deciding where yours should go! A traditional IRA allows contributors who meet certain requirements (age 59 ½) withdraw penalty free anytime before retirement age (65); however there will be taxes due upon withdrawal regardless if money was put back into an employer sponsored 401(k) plan during those same years–so some people prefer using these Traditional IRAs because they don’t have any penalties associated with withdrawing early without making new contributions every calendar year like most other retirement plans do such as 401(k) plans do.”
It’s important to know how much to contribute to your 401(k) so that you can maximize the amount of money that will go into your retirement account. To do this, there are three different ways you can calculate how much you should be contributing:
If you’re offered a 401(k) through your employer, the most effective way to invest in your 401(k) is by putting in enough money to get your full employer match.
Your employer match is free money, so it’s silly not to take advantage of it.
There are many different kinds of 401(k) plans, with different rules and restrictions. For example, some plans require that you contribute a certain amount to qualify for the match, while others don’t care how much you contribute as long as it’s a certain percentage of your salary. Some plans let you take out loans against your balance; others don’t allow loans at all. If you live in one state but work in another, there may be tax implications when moving from one state to another due to differences between laws regulating retirement accounts.
401(k) plans have great benefits, but they may also have some drawbacks. Here are some:
Being an entrepreneur is a great way to make a living, but it also comes with some unique challenges.
One of the biggest issues is retirement saving. If you’re self-employed, you probably don’t have access to a 401(k) plan or other employer-sponsored retirement savings plan. You may not even be eligible for one if your business isn’t large enough or stable enough yet!
It can be difficult to save for retirement when you’re running your own business because:
If you are self-employed, there are a few options for saving for retirement:
Self employed people often think of the 401k as their “retirement plan.” But that only works if you are an employee, and it doesn’t apply to everyone else. Self-employed people need to save for retirement in a different way than those who work for someone else do.
If you’re self-employed, here’s what your options are:
As you know, the 401k is a great way to save for retirement. It has tax advantages and contribution limits, which can make it an appealing option for some people. However, if you’re not eligible to contribute to a 401k plan or want to save more than your employer will allow in their plan, there are other ways to put money aside for your golden years.
If you have a 401(k) account and don’t have any other savings, it can be tempting to withdraw money from your 401(k) at age 59½. However, it’s usually better to leave the money in your 401(k). That way, you won’t have to pay taxes on its earnings now. Also, if you take money out of the account before reaching 59½ years of age or when you retire early (before standard retirement age), those distributions will be subject to an additional 10% tax penalty—a stiff bill that could really hurt your finances.
If you want more options for saving for retirement or are looking into ways of supplementing social security payments with other investments, consider opening up an IRA account.
Planning in advance is important so that you can reap the benefits of social security and get max payouts from your savings. This will also help you to plan for any expenses arising from your retirement. We have outlined various ways to save for retirement and how they can be used together in order to maximize savings. It is important to understand the time sensitivity of each and make a plan that works best for you as soon as possible.
When it comes to retirement, there are many variables that can affect how you save. However, whether you’re a small business owner or an individual, investing in your 401(k) is one of the best ways to reach your goals. A 401(k) can help you build up a strong foundation for retirement and give you peace of mind. You just need to start saving! And why wait till 60+? If you want to Retire Early, make sure you check out the FIRE movement:
What is FIRE?
FIRE stands for Financial Independence – Retire Early. It’s a goal to retire early and live a life of freedom and financial freedom. People who follow the FIRE movement plan to be able how much money they need to retire early — then work towards saving that amount by slashing their spending, getting rid of debt and living off passive income (money earned from investments).
The FIRE movement has exploded in popularity over the past few years and I’ve always known that I wanted to be financial independent as soon as possible, creating a F.I.R.E Plan was important for me to reach this goal.
The goal of FIRE is to retire early, in your 30s or 40s.
FIRE stands for Financial Independence Retire Early. It’s a way to save money, get out of debt and live a free life. If you want to achieve FIRE, you’ll need to learn how much money you should be saving every month so that you can quit working before retirement age. Check out the F.I.R.E Beginners Guide to learn everything about it and to create your own plan!
Investing your money is a fantastic way to grow your wealth. There are many different investment strategies, and there’s no “one size fits all” approach when it comes to investing. But once you’ve set up an emergency fund in a savings account (more on this below), one of the best ways to start investing is by buying some stock in companies that have proven themselves over time—investing in the stock market through index funds or ETFs (exchange-traded funds).
Investing can seem daunting at first, but it doesn’t have to be! It can actually be quite simple: just consider three things when deciding how much money you want to invest, and how often.
You can invest in a number of ways, but the most common are stocks, bonds and mutual funds. Stocks are shares of a company that you purchase from a broker/dealer. You can then either hold onto them or sell your shares on an exchange (via a different broker/dealer). Bonds are debt instruments issued by corporations or governments to raise capital for specific projects, such as building dams or funding research projects into cancer treatment. Bonds typically have fixed interest rates and pay out annually until they mature (at which point you receive 100% of your principal back). Mutual funds pool money together from many investors so that it becomes more feasible for them to buy investment assets like stocks or bonds; this allows average investors like us to diversify our holdings while also spreading out risk across multiple companies instead of just one single corporation—which could go bankrupt if things don’t go well!
Cryptocurrencies allow us to trade with other people via blockchain technology without needing bank accounts tied into banks who charge high fees when we transact between each other because their business model depends on charging customers more than what it costs them in actual expenses like electricity bills so they need profits somewhere else besides selling financial services over time.
Investing is a great way to make sure your money is working for you. But how do you get started?
Investing can be intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. Here are some tips for getting started:
-Start small. You don’t need to make a large investment in order to start investing. Even a small amount of money will grow over time.
-Do research on different types of investments. There are many different kinds of investments out there, and each one has its own pros and cons when it comes to risk and return potential.
-Don’t invest more than you can afford to lose! No matter what kind of investment you’re making, it’s important not to invest more than what would hurt if it didn’t work out—especially if that amount is fairly low (say, less than $100). If your goal is just to build up some savings or help pay off debt, then investing in something more risky may not be worth the risk—and could end up costing you much more than just keeping the money in a savings account or paying off debt with cash directly from each paycheck instead of using credit cards.”
Investing can seem complicated at first, but once you get the hang of it, it’s actually pretty simple. You just need to know what you want to invest in and why.
Here are some things to consider:
Once you’ve got all those questions answered, it’s time to start looking for a place to put your money.
Here’s how to invest:
Cryptocurrency is the term that refers to any digital medium of exchange that functions as a currency. Cryptocurrencies are decentralized, meaning they operate without the need for centralized banks or governments. These digital currencies are not controlled by any particular organization or government, but instead rely on cryptography for security (hence “crypto”).
In order for cryptocurrency to be traded in exchange for goods and services, it must have value. The value of each cryptocurrency varies depending on how much demand there is for it and how many people have accepted it as payment. Some cryptocurrencies have no intrinsic value—they don’t represent anything else besides themselves (such as gold), while other cryptocurrencies are backed by valuable assets like fiat currency (like dollars) or metals (like gold). You may hear these types referred to as “stable coins.”
The first thing to consider is that you are going to be investing with a small amount of money. You needn’t worry about losing a lot, but the potential for gains will be limited. If you want to make money in crypto, then you should learn how to trade.
Some people find that they enjoy trading and would like to do more than just invest their savings—they want to generate income from their crypto holdings as well. The best way for these people is through day trading, which means holding on to their coins as long as possible while simultaneously buying low and selling high.
If this sounds like fun but also sounds like too much work (or if you’re just not sure about it), then there are other options available for those who don’t want the stress levels associated with day trading or investing all at once in one big lump sum: dollar cost averaging (DCA) or rebalancing can both help build wealth over time without requiring constant attention from investors themselves.
The cryptocurrency market is full of coins, and it can be hard to keep track of them all. But we’re here to help!
We’ll start by laying out the basics: what are altcoins, meme coins, stable coins, and what kind of coin is bitcoin?
Altcoins are cryptocurrencies other than bitcoin. They can be used for payments and transacting just like bitcoin, but are often faster or more private. Altcoins include popular cryptocurrencies like Ethereum, Litecoin, and Monero.
Meme coins are a jokey way of describing a small number of cryptocurrencies that have gained popularity through their association with an internet meme or a viral social media post that caught on. Examples include Dogecoin (originally based on the popular “Doge” meme), Pepe Cash (a parody of Pepe the Frog), and even Jesus Coin (which promises salvation).
Stable coins are cryptocurrencies that have been designed to maintain a steady value over time—for instance, by being tied to another asset like gold or silver or fiat currency like U.S. dollars. This means they aren’t as volatile as more traditional cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin because their value doesn’t fluctuate wildly from day-to-day based on market conditions (like demand).
It’s best to get started with your research, waaay before you actually buy your first crypto. This way, you’ll get to know the market and avoid getting scammed by buying a rug pull.
The first thing you’ll need is a cryptocurrency wallet. You can find them online, on your phone, on your computer and the safest way: an offline wallet—there are lots of options for all different types of wallets, so it’s important to do your research and find one that works for you. Once you have a wallet, it’s time to buy your first cryptocurrency.
Please note, that with crypto you’re your own bank: you hold your own vault. I always suggest you get an offline wallet, so your crypto is safe. I’ve been hacked and lost a lot of money because of it, so please, take your crypto off the internet and put it on your own ledger.
The first step is to find an exchange that accepts fiat currency (money). Coinbase or KuCoin is a great place to start if this is your first time buying crypto. I can give you a free $10 in Bitcoin if you use my link to sign-up! After signing up on Coinbase and linking your bank account or debit card, they’ll give you some money (in USD) so that you can purchase the amount of Bitcoin or Ethereum that you want. They also offer other cryptocurrencies like Polkadot and Dogecoin—but we’ll get into those later in this guide! Once you’ve purchased the coin(s) of your choosing, they’ll be stored in your wallet until they’re ready for use! And if you’re just hodling till they reach the sky, make sure you send them to your offline wallet.
There are many reasons to invest in gold. It is a safe investment and can help you protect your savings against inflation, market downturns and other economic problems. Gold also has a history of being used as a store of value for thousands of years. The price of gold fluctuates with the economy, so it’s important to know what type of investor you are before deciding whether or not this form of investing is right for you: If you’re just starting out as an investor or have never invested at all before, then buying gold bullion coins might be the best option. They are easy to buy and sell; plus they’re easy to understand since they represent actual physical ounces (oz) as opposed to paper assets that don’t necessarily correlate directly with their underlying value (like stocks).
I hope this article has given you more insight into how money works, so that you have a better chance of making the most of it. The first step to being smart with your money is to understand where it comes from, where it goes and why. This can be tricky for some people because we think about our finances in terms of day-to-day expenses rather than overall budgeting. One way around this is by planning ahead for things like bills or other fixed expenses that might come up later on down the road. If you know what’s coming up next month or next year then there won’t be any surprises when they happen!
The second step is learning how much you’re spending versus saving each month/year – this should be easy enough if you’ve been keeping track previously (as mentioned above). Once again though keep track of these numbers so that when times get tough financially there’s some wiggle room without having any surprises come out at once!