- Plans & Services
- Tools & Tips
- About Us
The idea of creating and living on a budget is overwhelming. Breaking that process into smaller tasks, though, will make it easier. When you are able to concentrate on one or two areas of budget planning at a time, you gain a better understanding of the entire process and you stand a better chance of creating a budget that you will actually follow. Whatever your experience and wherever you are in the budget process, these articles will provide the guidance you need to learn and create a workable document.
Is your rainy day fund all wet? Every paycheck, you plan to save, but it seems like there's nothing left over after bills and creditors get their share. It's getting tougher to pay the bills on time, let alone save any money! Don't fret; there's a solution. There are a lot of ways to put another dollar in your pocket here and there.
Does the credit card industry profit mostly from interest rates? Yes. But wait, there's more...
After school activities don't have to be expensive to be fun, educational and bonding. Here are some ideas ranging from backyard amusement to joining local clubs that will keep your kids busy in the afternoons.
For most families, the grocery bill is the biggest variable expense in their budget - and provides the most opportunity to save money.
In many cultures, haggling is a time honored tradition. In modern day America, however, it's been less commonplace with the exception of yard sales or big ticket items like autos or real estate.
Create a map of your financial transactions and you'll see where your money actually goes each month. Preparing a monthly set of personal financial statements gives you the information you need to effectively manage your finances and improve your financial status.
Do you know how much of your income should be spent on things such as housing and food? Creating and maintaining a budget is easier if you apply some basic guidelines.
Ever wonder where your hard-earned money goes each month? You can find out by simply organizing your finances through a budget.
Managing your finances is never easy-just ask any of the millions of Americans who struggle on a daily basis to live within their means. The key to successful financial management is effective budgeting. Unfortunately, creating a budget and sticking to it can be extremely difficult-but it is doable. Read on for 101 ways you can reduce your budget (and your stress) with a little planning, patience and practicality. So, are you ready to take control of your financial future?
If you have school-age children, you probably have mixed feelings about the approach of a new school year. You may be looking forward to the relative peace and quiet of having them back in school after a long summer break. At the same time, you are probably dreading the preparation and expense involved in getting them ready to head back. The key to smart shopping for the new school year is to have a plan.
Are you in charge of your spending or is your spending in charge of you? Learn how to manage your expenses and meet your financial goals.
Ask any couple what they fight about, and most will tell you "money". It's a hot-button topic with almost everyone, partly because it so directly affects the way we live our lives.
Single parenting is tough enough without worrying about your finances, too. But the fact is that it’s a lot harder to stretch one income when you’re taking care of the needs of your children and yourself. You may have considered asking your parents or other family members for a loan or other financial assistance, or maybe you’re living with them while you pay off some bills and get back on your feet. Whatever the case, there’s plenty you can do to make your dollars go further and live without your family’s financial support.
You may get some interesting reactions when you tell others that you’ve started your holiday shopping several months ahead of time, but those same people will probably envy the extra time and money you have once the holidays roll around.
April is National Financial Literacy Month, so use this time to learn as much as you can to improve your financial fitness.
It’s only fall, so why should you be thinking about the winter holidays now? Consider this worrisome statistic from online payment site ebillme.com—more than 60 percent of survey respondents were still paying off their 2009 holiday bills in March 2010. But by planning ahead, you can build a manageable holiday spending plan and avoid building up hard-to-pay-off credit card debt.
According to recent statistics compiled by the Federal Reserve, household debt currently stands at 114.6 percent of disposable income. Since people are spending more than they make, many are finding it more and more difficult to keep up with their bills. The strain that causes on your budget is obvious, but what you may not know is that the stress of dealing with debt can also have a significant negative impact on your physical and mental health.
There seems to be a running joke that New Year's resolutions never last. (Why else would we have to keep making them every year?) But if you take the right approach to a resolution such as "getting out of debt", there's no reason you can't be successful. If you've been working to get out of debt and are not happy with your progress, or feel that you are starting to backslide, it's probably time to reassess your budget and fine-tune your strategy. The best way to get started is to: get organized, assess your current situation, develop a strategy that works for you, and make sure your goals are realistic.
By now, you’ve probably broken a New Year’s resolution, or two, or three. But there’s one resolution you can’t afford to break and that’s getting out of debt. You’re on the right path to success being on a debt relief plan, but this is no time to let your guard down. Toward that end, here are 9 tips to help you keep your commitment this year.
Spring cleaning can be a great way to make some extra money and save over the next year. Read on to find out how spring cleaning can help you to take control of your finances.
If you are like most people, you have mounds of receipts and papers sitting on a desk or overflowing in a shoebox. Having an organized system for your financial records will save you and your family time and aggravation in the future.
Who needs a financial plan anyway? You do! A carpenter doesn't build a house without a blueprint - can you build a secure future without a financial plan?
Summer is here and with it comes lots of sun and relentless heat. It's only natural to want to stay as cool as possible, but unfortunately, one of the most expensive systems to run in a home is air-conditioning. With a little bit of planning, you can reduce your dependence on air conditioning or at least limit how much you use it
Trying to find the perfect gift for everyone on your holiday list can be time-consuming, frustrating, and expensive. Many people find that this experience causes them to overspend their holiday budget - assuming they were prudent enough to set a budget limit in the first place. Unfortunately for some, the only budget limit they set is the limit on their credit cards and the holiday shopping only ends when this limit is reached.
In most parts of the country, utility usage rises in the winter months. This isn't surprising since with less daylight and colder weather we spend more time indoors, so the need for heating, water heating, and lighting is greatest during these months. Of course, this also means that the accompanying utility bills rise as well. You can't do anything to change the temperature outside, but with a little bit of planning and effort, you can take steps to keep you comfortable while you're inside without spending a fortune.
Are you scrambling to make ends meet, spending more money than you earn, or failing to save each month? If so, you're not alone-according to a recent survey, more than one-third of Americans are regularly spending more than they can afford. The good news: By following a few out-of-the-box strategies, you can manage your day-to-day expenditures, balance your budget, and get in the black in no time. To get started, check out these 10 simple tips that just about anyone can use.
Nearly $2 for a loaf of bread? Almost $4 for a gallon of milk? More than $5 for a box of cereal? If it seems like you're spending a small fortune at the supermarket, you probably are. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, food prices rose a whopping 5.4 percent in 2008 alone.
Are you spending more than you can afford? Are you failing to save even a portion of your paycheck? Are your bills spiraling out of control? If you answered yes to any of these questions, chances are you're living beyond your means-and you are not alone.
$548.72. According to the National Retail Federation, that's the average amount parents spent on each kid in 2009 for back-to-school supplies. If you have that much extra cash lying around, lucky you (and why are you reading this article?!). If, like the rest of us, that sum seems pretty intimidating, read on for some easy ways to save this fall.
As the temperature plummets, it's tempting to crank the thermostat and settle in for a season of toasty toes. But don't let the weather bully you into high energy bills. You can stay cozy without blowing your budget by finding some creative ways to keep warm.
What's your debt IQ? Take one of our quizzes and find out how much you know about financial fitness.Take the Quiz Now!
Subscribe to our newsletter, packed with great articles, tips, and advice to help you make the most of your money.Subscribe Now!
Our calculators can help you figure out your budget, credit card payments, mortgage, and more!Learn More