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Financial Tips 


CREDIT REPAIR 


Credit repair is the process of identifying

negative information pertaining to the credit

report of an individual and eliminating or

fixing any mistakes that may have

led to a bad credit rating.


The process by which a person or business

improves their ability to borrow money,

for example, by correcting wrong information

in their credit report or reducing their

amount of debt more quickly.


It is the act of restoring or correcting

a poor credit score.


Before you can begin to understand

the importance of credit repair, you first

must know what your credit report looks like.

You can start by requesting a copy of your

credit report through one of many free credit

reporting services online, search google

“free annual credit report” and then

make your selection.


Now that you have acquired your credit report,

review the information listed to see if everything

is accurate and that all items belong to you.

Note…. any items that do not belong to you,

whether name, address, or account you have the

option to dispute it and once investigated the item

can be removed from your credit report.


After you have identified the items to be disputed

you can see who and how much you owe.


Knowing who and what you owe is important

so that you can see firsthand what is needed

to begin your credit repair process.


Make a list of the creditors you owe,

include the name of the company, phone number

and date the accounts were opened according to

the credit report. Now you can call to see what

options are available to resolve the account.


Usually, the creditor will allow you to make

payments and or even make settlement offers

that will clear the account and once paid

in full, will be reported to the credit agency

to show the account has been satisfied.


Before you commit to any payment arrangement

or make a settlement offer, be sure to review

your current budget (income and expenses) to

determine an amount you can afford to pay

monthly or in lump sum... 


LOWER YOUR INTEREST RATE


If you are concerned about a high interest 

rate on your credit card and not really able to 

save money, you can ask for a lower interest rate. 

A lot of credit card issuers have variable 

interest rates available.


1. Come prepared to negotiate. Know your 

credit score, due date, current balance, credit 

history and your current credit card terms.


2. Work on your credit health if it isn't 

where it should be. 

(Get utilization under 30% and make payments on time.)


3. Shop around, know your options. 

You can use this as leverage when negotiating. 

Your card issuer needs to stay competitive 

with what they are offering.


4. Start with the credit card you have had the 

longest or the card with the highest interest rate.


5. Call to make your request.

Remember if the answer is no, try again 

in a few months. Try to maintain on time 

payments, it helps.


GOOD LUCK! 


INCREASE YOUR CREDIT LIMIT 

A credit limit is the maximum you can

charge on a single credit account.

To increase your credit limit, simply call your card 

issuer and ask for a credit line increase.

(Be sure that the issuer has your current salary information.)

Some card issuers allow you to make the

request online or on their app.


With a higher credit limit, you give yourself more spending power

and keep your utilization rate low.

Both of these things have a huge impact

on your credit score.

Keep in mind, that if you are approved, it may take several  

days or weeks to appear on your credit reports.

Your potential credit scores increase will shift depending 

on how much your credit utilization has decreased.


Place Limits on Spending

 When looking to place limits on spending,

you can first start by asking your credit card

company if setting a cap on the amount of

purchases and cash advances are

allowed on your account.


If so, remember to do the same for

ANY authorized users.


At the very least, you should set your cash

advance limit to $0 to avoid higher

fees and interest rates.


It is best if you keep your credit utilization

rate at a comfortable level.


Generally, experts recommend that you keep

the ratio between your balance owed and

credit limit below 30% because credit card

utilization is an important factor in



CREDIT CARD DUE DATE

 Your credit card due date is the date your payment 

must be paid every month.


Most credit card issuers allow you to change that 

date to a different date in the month.


You should take a look at your paydays and when your 

other bills are due to select

a better date if needed.


For example, some people set up an

automatic payment in order to have all their

bills come out at once, so they don't

forget to pay on time.


In other instances, some people like to pay

their bills immediately according

to their payday.


You can call your credit card issuer to

have the due date changed.


Please remember that this usually takes one

bill cycle to take effect. 


Make sure to confirm the change on your next billing 

cycle and update your calendar with the new date.



How To Prepare For A Rainy Day!

 A ​rainy-day savings account is an account set up to cover 

those unexpected expenses that you may incur.


For example, if your car breaks down or you need to make 

some minor repairs around the house. 

Anything could happen at any time, so a rainy-day account 

helps to handle the expense at a moment's notice.

 

Here are some easy steps to take to set up

a rainy-day savings fund.


1. You can open a saving account and begin to

deposit as little as $5.00 a week to start.


2. If possible, your rainy-day savings account should 

be opened at a different bank from your checking account. 

You should also decline a debit card or cut it up for

that savings account. This makes it a little more difficult 

to use the money, if you HAVE to go to the bank

to make withdrawals.


3. If it's not possible to open the account at a different bank, 

keep your savings and checking account deposits separate.

You can keep better track of the savings, and if the money is in the 

checking account, you might mistake it for extra cash.


4. When creating your budget be sure to include

your rainy-day amount so that you don't forget about it.


5. You can also set up direct deposit for the weekly, 

bi-weekly or monthly deposits to your savings 

account so you will not see it.

(When it’s out of sight it’s out of mind.)


6.The amount of money in your rainy-day account 

varies from person to person. You should set an amount to 

reach that could cover your highest unexpected 

expense and work to have that amount in your account.


(For example, $1,000 may be able to cover minor home 

or car repairs or medical expenses that you didn't expect.)


So now that you have an idea of where to start, let’s 

get the umbrellas open so we can be covered on a rainy day!



​H​O​W T​O KEEP​ DEBT A​T BAY!!​​

Start by paying​ off the little debts, so that 

you​ can have the confidence to 

conquer​ the high ones.


It is recommended to pay off the debt with

the higher interest rate first.


Making weekly or bi-weekly payments to pay off your credit  

card balances every month can help you earn credit card rewards.

This also keeps you from being charged extra interest.


No extra debt....

We know you have that one family member or

friend who wants you to co-sign on a loan.


DONT DO IT!​


If they miss a payment your credit will be affected,

and you will be stuck paying the bill.


Having cash on hand keeps you from overspending.

Once the cash is gone, go on a ‘cash diet'

this helps you stay on budget.


These are just a few tips to help you

KEEP DEBT AT BAY!


ROAD TO SAVINGS:

MONEY REALLOCATION

Now that you have started reducing your expenses 

let's put this into practice for at least 2 months.

 

For every dollar saved by making those cuts, 

deposit the money in to your... (wait for it) COOKIE JAR.


Yes, that's right find a jar, a box or even a piggy bank. 

Anything that can hold all the money you are saving.

(Be sure to keep it out of sight...you know out of sight out of mind.)


For every dollar or coin added, write it down on a pad.

Keep a tally of all the money going in. Nothing should be coming out.


At the end of 2 or 3 months count how much you 

have saved... you will be surprised.


When depositing money into your jar, be sure to round to

the nearest dollar. If you have spent $2.75 round up to $3.00.

(This makes it easier to track.)


Depositing money into your savings jar provides

two ways of saving at one time. You are able to make cuts to

household expenses and curve your spending habits.


So now that you have all the facts, 


ARE YOU READY TO GET STARTED?

(DON'T DELAY)

      Trust it! It works, I did it and so can you.      


CREDIT CARD REWARDS

Credit card rewards are any perks

(monetary or non-monetary)

that credit cards offer to consumers who uses the card.


Would you believe your credit card can also earn you  money?


There are a​ lot of credit car​ds that can earn you cash back.

If and only if you can pay off the balance every month, 

you should use your credit card at every chance.



Shop around for the best rewards and cash back 

percentages to earn money while you spend.



You can potentially earn hundreds of dollars at the end 

of the year by signing up for a cash back card.



Next, make purchases to accrue rewards then redeem the 

rewards through your card issuer.



Put your spending money to work, for you!



Saving Money At The Grocery Store

1.Budget

*You can do this by taking the average amount of money 

you spend on your monthly groceries and dividing 

that between future store runs.


*Imagine your average allowance for groceries is $600 every month.


You typically go shopping every 10 days (3 times a month).


*Divide that $600 into 3 and get $200 budget for groceries.


2. Make a shopping list and stick to it

*You should not go to the store without your list. 

*As you find what you need cross it off.

*Do not add any new items to your list while you are shopping.


3. Use cash

*It is harder to go over budget if all you can spend is 

the money in your pocket.

(The amount budgeted for your groceries.)


4. Choose shopping partners

*Someone to help you stick to your list.

*Remember choose wisely, you don't want a shopping 

partner who just buys anything without checking the prices.



5. Compare prices

*You can always compare the prices of the items 

on your list, as well as the stores to purchase your items.

  

*Comparison shopping is a crucial habit to develop if you 

want to save money on your purchases.


*Check the circulars of your local stores for the best prices. 

You can even find an app to compare shopping options on your phone.


6. Use Coupons & Promo Codes

The difference between coupons and promo codes are: 


*Coupons are physical pieces of paper that have the deal written on them.


*Promo codes are simply numbers or letters that 

you can obtain from anywhere and then input into an online form 

to receive your discount.



7. Shopping while hungry

*People who shop when they are hungry typically make unhealthy 

choices and end up overspending.


*You can aim to spend 10-20 percent less of your monthly 

grocery budget to save money.


Let's curve our food budget, starting today!!!! 


BANK BENEFICIARIES

Beneficiary simple put is a person who gains a profit or 

an advantage from something.


When you hear beneficiary, most people immediately think of life

insurances, retirement plans and wills.


It is crucial to have a beneficiary for these documents, and if you don't...

I strongly suggest you fix that ASAP!


If you already have a beneficiary set up, check to make sure it is up to date.

(Are you newly married, recently divorced or have you lost a loved one?)

Let's make sure your assets are going to the right person.


Have you thought about a beneficiary for your bank accounts?

A beneficiary on your bank account allows your loved one's

immediate access to the funds left behind when you are deceased.

(With proper identification and a death certificate)

This is called a POD (payable on death) account.


People who have a POD account keep their money out of probate.

(The legal process that manages assets and liabilities left by a deceased person).


The money and account are yours. Your beneficiary does not have 

access to the money or account until you are deceased.


*A last will and testament cannot/will not affect the person named as

the beneficiary on a pod account. A named beneficiary supersedes a will*.


RETIREMENT

N​ow is the time to start saving for your future, that's right 

planning for your retirement.  

​​

What​ does that mean, glad you asked​?

Retirement is the action of leaving one's job and 

ceasing to work.


So, let’s star​t saving money!


There are several ways to save money and plan for your retirement.


Here are some examples of retirement benefits that maybe 

offered by your employer IRA, TSP, or 401k 

just to name a few.


An IRA is an Individual Retirement Account

This type of account allows you to save money for retirement in a 

tax-reduced, tax deferred, or tax-free way.



A TSP is a Thrift Savings Plan account. 

This type of account is offered to Federal employees and members 

of the uniformed services, including Ready Reserves. 

This is ​a retirement savings and investment plan account.



A 401(k), is plan where the employees receive a tax break.

A method of reduction of the tax liability of the taxpayer, 

on the money they pay into the account.



Contributions are automatically withdrawn from employee paychecks and 

invested in funds of the employee's choosing.

(From a list of available offerings).



These are just a few things to think about.

Ready to make a difference in your future, let's start 

saving for your retirement!!!!!!



Start by setting a goal of how much you want to 

save for retirement and stick to it.

Saving is a rewarding habit! 



It is recommended that you will need at least 70to 90 percent of 

your pre-retirement salary to maintain your standard of living 

when you stop working.



If you have any of the retirement plans listed above, contribute as 

much money into it as possible.



You can also look into other basic investment plans to save money.

This will allow you to diversify your funds and can improve

your return and reduce the risk.



Do not touch your retirement savings accounts.


It may be tempting but it may cause you to lose your principal, 

interest or your tax benefits. 


You can do on it!


Let’s start saving today for your tomorrow!


CREATING A WILL  

Millionaire or not, you should consider getting a will.

A will is a legal document that represents how you want your assets to be distributed. 


Pro​s

* Creating a will does not have to break the bank.

*You can appoint a guardian for your minor children.

*You can be specific about your funeral arrangements. 


Cons

*A will is public record.

*Wills do not avoid probate.

(Probate is the judicial determination of the validity of a will)


   * Can be subject to federal estate taxes and income taxes.

Not preparing a will usually leads to a judge or state official 

making the decision about your estate. 



DEBT REDUCTION


Now that you have created a budget and can see how

your money is being spent... begin cutting your expenses. 

This is called debt reduction.

Review your household expenses.  

Are you paying too much for cable? Leaving lights on when 

no one is home? Eating out more than you are cooking? 

Buying more than you need?


Well, if this is you, it's time to make some changes.

Utilize comparison shopping before making purchases, this 

includes cable, cell phone plans and even buying food.

Don't waste electricity, unplug appliances when not in use.


STICK TO THE BUDGET!

These are just a few ways to cut expenses and reduce your debt.


INSURANCE

One way to save money, stay on budge​t or keep money in your pocket, 

is by looking over your policies to see if you are paying too much into 

your life and disability insurance plans.


▪ Far too often many people are talked

into buying more insurance than they may need.

Start by reviewing your existing plans for the benefits offered and 

compare with the options that may be available to determine which 

plan best fits your needs and your budget.


▪ If you have life insurance but no dependents or anyone to leave 

your benefits to, then consider only taking out enough life insurance 

to cover what you need to take care of yourself.


You can also take a moment to look into other types of insurance 

that may benefit you in the long run, such as short-or-long 

term disability.


▪ Short term disability insurance can cover if you are unable to work 

for a few weeks, a month, three months or even up to a year.


This benefit can help to ease your worries about how you will meet your 

needs and financial obligations.


▪ Long term disability insurance can help you pay your bills if you are 

injured or suffer with a long-term illness.


You never know what can happen, so be prepared, so that you are able to 

take care of the things you need to handle! 



Emergency Fund

If you don't have an emergency fund, you should start one today! 

You never know what the future holds, and having an emergency 

fund is very important. It's easier than you think...


You can start off small, with just $25 a week you can 

save $1300 in a year.


* This money can cover home emergencies, unexpected car 

repairs or emergency travel.


* Your emergency fund can also help to avoid 

having to borrow money at high interest rates if 

you are already in debt.

Ready to start your emergency fund now?

Well, don​'t forget these steps....


* Create a budget, which means to calculate your

money coming in.


-Don't forget child support and alimony.


-Track ​your spending, make sure to include rent or mortgage. 

utility bills and insurances.


- Estimate monthly spending for gas; food; and entertainment 

just to name a few.


- Calculate what fits your budget so you can start to save money.


* Set goals​


- Make sure to set a specific amount and specific calendar date.


* Automatically save, if possible, put yourself first!


- Add your emergency fund amount to your expenses if necessary                 

(When making a budget)



* Let the money earn some interest


- Do not touch this money


- Set up emergency fund and then forget you have it.



Penny Pinching

Tired of living check to check?

Now is the time to get the most from your money...


First, let's start by creating a budget:


*Write down the money you receive every month

(All sources)


*Then create a list of your expenses, 

everything you pay each month.

(Be sure to include any miscellaneous items)


*Once you have created each list, you will be able to 

see how much you earn and how much you spend on a monthly basis.

 

*Review these lists to see where you can begin to make cuts...

 

YES, even if it means cutting back on the coffee 

and bagel 5 times a week.


*Seeing where to make cuts will show you what you need

and what you can do without.


*Your penny-pinching list will serve as a guide to decreasing your 

expenses, one step at a time.


*Now that you see what you can live without, 

you can begin saving money.


*Place nickels, dimes, pennies, and yes even dollars 

that you would have spent into a jar or separate account and watch it grow.


*Challenge yourself by setting a timeline to see how 

much you can save in a specific period of time... 

2 weeks, a month, 3 months, or even a year

 

*You will be surprised at how well you will do once 

you apply yourself!



Create a Budget


Budgeting is the process of creating a plan

to spend/save money.

Who is budgeting for?

Budgeting is for everyone including those who receive allowance.

Creating a budget can help you to be in control of your 

finances and meet your savings goals.

To create a proper budget, 

you will need to:


* Gather and calculate your monthly income

- Including Social Security income, disability, child support, 

pay stubs, allowance, etc.


* Track your spending by creating a list

- Calculate your expenses

For example: rent/mortgage, utilities, transportation, 

groceries, daycare, credit cards and entertainment.

Just to name a few.


* Total your monthly income and expenses

- Subtract your expenses from your income.


* Make adjustments to your expenses (if necessary)

- If your expenses are more than your income, 

that means you are overspending.


Identify the expenses you can reduce/eliminate

For example: eating out too much.


- If your expenses are less than your income, you can save 

towards a specific goal and/or invest.