I have come across a few people who like to live for the Now in life. They are always going out and doing everything in their power to be present at numerous events while negating their future security. I ask myself when I see this happening, what kind of void are those individuals trying to fill? Don’t get me wrong I enjoy a good party from time to time when it’s important to me, but all that spending those people are doing strikes me as a red flag. Twenty years later those people are going to be wondering and most likely regretting why didn’t I prepare for my future.
An unfortunate event took place on my way to work on a recent Friday morning. I make my usual stroll to my car about two blocks away from my apartment building and that’s when I saw the travesty right in front of my eyes. My 1999 Camry was hit and my driver side mirror was shattered in pieces and hanging for dear life. Well you know, what was my first thought when I sat down in my car? How much is this going to cost me? See picture below for your viewing pleasure.
During my lunchtime chat with a co-worker I reveal my recent incident and he quickly tells me a story of a similar situation he went through several years ago. It cost him about 200 bucks back then to fix. Now my mind is checking off the dollar signs to the tune of $400-500 because:
1. His accident was a few years ago and Inflation will get the best of me.
2. His car is a newer Camry and I figured newer parts should be cheaper to find.
3. His mirror didn’t need a complete replacement with some body work / painting involved.
NOW I am freaking out because as you already know I am not fond of spending money on miscellaneous transportation costs. It’s the next day and now I have a plan to get at least three estimates from local body shops and go with the best price and customer service I receive. It’s more important to me for the work to be done quickly and efficiently than the overall price.
Now for the Details:
Estimate 1: Body Shop closest to my house- $225 to order part, paint and Install.
Estimate 2: Body Shop about a mile away- $210 to order part, paint and Install.
What did I actually Spend: $35 for a driver’s side mirror found at a local junk yard, 55 to paint and Install part at body shop number 2. $90 dollars total.
So there you have it folks I saved about $120 because I took matters into my own hands and tracked down the exact auto part I needed and hustled my way to getting some huge savings. I stopped at the second body shop because the owner was cool and very open and honest about the details of the job. Because of this I gave him my business.
These tactics can be used by anybody if you just take the time and make a plan to negotiate and save some dollars. I could have just given in to the first body shop estimate, and been happy with the first quote given. But luckily for me that I am never 100% trusting with service quotes, plus I love to shop around for better deals. Never ever forget to get a second opinion in anything you need to get done service wise. Because different people charge different prices at different times, and it may help you tremendously if one of those individuals is in a good mood.
Examples of Price Quotes/Estimates to save a buck:
Mortgage Loans (Good Faith Estimate Docs)
Any type of tutoring / lessons
Financial Advisor Fees
Cable / Cell / Internet Services
Now is the time to Comment if you have a cool story on how you saved a buck by taking matters into your hands.
Watch your Money!
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|Have a 150 grand lying around?|
Can you believe this? The Super rich have 288 times more savings than the normal American. Compound that by 4% and you have a pretty decent interest income. I must say I didn’t fully agree with all the hoopla surrounding the top 1% and all the wall street protesters, but the facts are very clear and right in front of our noses. The Super rich are richer by 288 times the median income. How can the top 1% be so abundantly prosperous and the average person not be? The economic system if taken to extremes will not sustain another meltdown.
Did you know that the system is based on good faith and that most of your money is not all accounted for in banks or brokerage firms. Let me explain a little further for those of you who do not know. Most financial institutions use about 80-90 % of your money to lend out to others or to re-invest again for their future gain. If the system were to collapse it could be the end of monetary policy as we know it. The actual figure the computer displays out to you and millions others just like you, is a figment of your imagination because guess what, you’re actual money is the mortgage of some other person and the bank is the administrator of your assets and another person’s debt.
I am not telling you all this so that you can run over to the bank tomorrow and hit the eject button on your money, but to get you to think a little bit about what is actually occurring behind the scenes. Things are not as rosey as the media is making it seem. One day it’s OMG we might go into another recession and the next day the media is all about how great of an economy we have. They can not seem to make up their minds or just maybe the powers from above and the ultra rich are making the media outlets run the happy go lucky stories so that a political / monetary uprising do not occur.
Richer by 288 X the median Average article: Net Worth Article
So if you can sit down and digest the article you just read in the link above about the super rich and the income disparity affecting our nation, How do you feel? Do you now feel a bit of compassion for the wall street protesters? Do you even care that somebody has 288 times more savings than you do?
Pic above is credited to Icon Airplane Co. Toys of the Super Rich!
Money Growth Steps
- Protect your income- Save those dollars
- Live for tomorrow by watching what you do in the present
- Avoid debt like the plaque
- Keep expenses very low and do not succumb to lifestyle inflation
- Increase retirement and emergency contributions by 1% or more every year
- Have piggy bank and every year cash in the coins for savings or debt repayment
- Use as many rewards / cash back programs as possible
- Work harder in finding side gigs
- Buy assets that pay interest or dividends
- Read PF Blogs and watch your Net Worth
These are all the steps I do to increase my nest egg and I think each and every one of you should do the same. I sometimes feel with simple steps, we all can see great results. These steps are things you may have already done in the past, but maybe you are too busy with life’s routine and have not adhered to some of the steps above in a while. Well I am here to set you on the right money path. Find the time and the energy to do what is right to make your wallet fat with dollar bills. Don’t be like that baby in the capital one commercial that turns down free money. Use the skills you have and follow your path to achieving a greater sense of financial freedom.
Personal growth comes from realizing who you are and then improving on your weaknesses. Thus changing bad spending habits into routines that will enhance your money mantra. A lot of you are already realizing that to make it in life is getting harder then folks had it back in the good ol’ days, but do not fret as you have the ability to change and improve. Follow the steps above while establishing a online financial system to really change your future.
The pic above is a shot of the most successful business person ever: Warren Buffet. He is a living definition of what it is to have money growth. As he grew up in the middle class and now is worth over 40 billion dollars.
Comment if you already follow the steps listed above or if you have another system you use to stay in tuned with your finances?
Pic provided by AP press.
As we all know saving money tends to be an extremely difficult task with all the bills and expenses we accumulate throughout the years. How can you fight back and defeat the non-savings bug? By utilizing smart money tactics and creating a barrier between you and your money.
Anyone can do it as the system is not prejudice to race, but favors towards stubborn minded people who stick to a system of always paying themselves first. Most people are set in their ways and do not want to embark on a mission to better themselves by trying new financial tactics. What new savings tricks have you done recently? If you have not gone out of you’re comfort zone, try a few of the tips below:
*Open an online only savings account and direct deposit a set amount per paycheck (Barrier 1)
*Apply for your employers retirement plan with at least the employer match or up to 15%
*Open another checking, savings account and do not get checks/debit card(Direct Deposit Also, Barrier 2)
*Open an online brokerage account for scenarios if you see a cheap stock or mutual fund( For Investing )
This is system will utilize the two other accounts aside from your main checking account to use for 1. Goal Savings, 2. Emergency Savings. They will both have a direct deposit from your paycheck unless you can be diligent and transfer the money yourself every pay period. Most people will eventually forget or decide after three deposits that they need the money for something else. If you set it up for direct deposit through your employer then you will be less likely to remove the system. It will continue indefinitely and grow over time to help you achieve that emergency fund you have been dying to fund for a long while. A automatic system like this is just the beginning steps as you can add even more layers to the mix with DRIP’S and DSPP’s. (Dividend reinvestment plans and Dividend stock purchase plans)
Saving Money Tactics:
-Match your Friday spending and save the same amount
-When you go out to dinner, save the same amount of the bill in online savings
-Get the biggest piggy bank and attempt to fill it with all the loose change you can find
-Pay yourself first every pay period, even before bills.
-Sign up for all employer sponsored savings / retirement / profit sharing plans. (Start small, then increase)
If you do all these steps you will have a great online saving money system that can not be stopped easily. Systematic barriers will help you grow your accounts without you ever interrupting it. Simple steps can lead you to a better more relaxed financial life. Also very important to consider always set up a beneficiary for all your accounts just in case an emergency occurs.
Contact me if you have any questions regarding setting up a system like this. But really all it takes is a desire to begin by guiding yourself to complete all the Saving Money Tactics.
Rich Uncle EL
Pic is courtesy of moneywatch101.com of a typical Bank in the old days.
I wanted to share with you a few quotes today and hopefully this will get you motivated to start the weekend right. These financial quotes will help you get motivation in your life, whether it may be you are working a part-time / side job, looking at growing a business, taking care of a real estate property, or attempting to save a number of pesos this weekend by not making it rain in the clubs. Either way I wanted to share with you these excellent quotes and you guys can take the message any which way your mind desires.
Friday’s Best Quotes:
Action is the foundational key to all success. -Pablo Picasso
Working 8 hours a day for others then relaxing another 4 at home will never do much for success- RichUncle EL
Believing you can do it is always the first action towards success-RichUncle EL
Defeat is not the worst of failures. Not to have tried is the true failure. -George Edward Woodberry
As you can see the theme of today’s quotes are based on success and how to really grab it and make it a part of your routine. People work for themselves everyday and provide for their families by doing what they enjoy doing. Have you ever met somebody who was self employed and did not enjoy what they did to provide for themselves? I have not, and I consider those individuals as truly successful in their own ways. You make a trinket and sell it on Etsy, amazon, or EBay that is an excellent way to succeed in a small way. If you sell a thousand of those trinkets then you are really winning.
Blogging is also a way to work for yourself by writing original pieces of literature that you can pimp out to the world. Some get paid to offer excellent advice on personal finance and others do it for the love of the game. Either way I am doing something I like to do and that is sharing with all of you what’s in my head relating to personal finance.
The content this week in the PF blog world has been a bit lacking but I will share with you a few that I enjoyed reading.
Best PF Blog Posts:
The Money Counselor-Intimidated by Investing Jargon
Mr. Money Mustache-Tim Ferris vs. MMM (Old Post)
AddVodka- Why PF Bloggers are self centered
I hope you enjoy the posts as I did. Comment below if you have any favorites you would like to share with the moneywatch101 readers.
This is a guest post by a moneywatch101 reader.
Remember when we were children and played in the backyard for hours during our summer vacations? Even though this wasn’t much, we stood entertained by the simplest things such as a piece of chalk or a jump rope.
Well, the summer is upon us and our kids will be out of school soon which means more free-time and spending a bit more. As a single parent, I know I’m working on a tight budget so I did some research and came up with a few money-saving activities on how to enjoy this summer. I think it’s time to show our newer generation how to have cheap (often free) summer fun. I have enjoyed a few on this list so far and I’m hoping you can too!
SUMMER MOVIE PROGRAMS
Did you know that most cinemas run summer promotions with big discounts? Yup ALMOST free movie tickets at your local theaters. Here are a few listed below.
Cinemark -Summer Movie Clubhouse: A 10 movie show pass for $5, or one movie show for $1. (Cinemark.com)
Regal -Summer Movie Express: Selected PG or G rated movies for $1 on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. (regmovies.com)
Marquee cinemas –Kids Summer Movie Program: A special selection of family films brought to you each week during the summer at no charge. (marqueecinemas.com)
LOWES FREE KIDS CLINICS
Enjoy building a FREE wooden project with your kids that will keep them entertained for hours. Not only do they get to take these home but they can also take home the free apron, goggles, and patch to make them feel like real “handymen”. (lowesbuildandgrow.com)
These are always fun and often provide free admission. Check out the websites below to find a list of zoo/museums near you.
SUMMER READING PROGRAMS
We often forget about education during the summer. With free programs provided by local libraries and book stores such as Barnes and Nobles, our kids can enjoy several books and activities.
One of my favorite is, being read to for free. Contact your local library/ book store and ask about “circle time” where your kids can enjoy a book or two with a group of friends.
They can also participate in the Barnes and Noble Summer Reading Program. This consists of reading eight aged-related books, writing them down on a list, and then receiving a FREE book as a reward.
This is a guest post by a moneywatch101 reader and she wanted to share how to save and have fun locally.
Thanks for the guest post, Mrs Real. Its great to have many affordable options for the kids. Also if you are in the NY area Wednesdays I believe the Bronx Zoo has free admissions for kids. Go to their website for more details. Be safe and watch those kids.
Hello As I think back I have seen many episodes of the Fresh Prince of Bel Air, and frankly who hasn’t. But I started to think how to incorporate what I saw on the show with finance, business and entrepreneurship. One of the important factors on the show was Will’s ultimate desire to succeed with his business ventures.
-He never stopped striving to succeed
-He had multiple business partners-Carlton / Jazzy Jeff / His Uncle-Phil
-If he failed, that didn’t stop his drive, he tried again and again
-He mixed hard work with a little bit of fun
-He saw opportunities for a business idea that people overlooked
-Even though he lived comfortably he did not give up to make his own path
What is your take on how you perceive the ideas that are hidden within you. Do you write them down and take a few action steps towards attempting to achieve them or do you just have that great idea and forget about it. Things cross my mind for a split second and I for the most part make a reference somewhere as to record it so that I will never forget it. Even if you feel that an idea is not good enough now then maybe when the time is right you can and should act on it. It all boils down to how much motivation you have and how you can embrace it to better yourself. I have a couple of ideas in the works on how I can find my own path and make a mark in this world. Success can be measured by what you have accomplished in life that you set a goal for and it doesn’t have to be publicized for all to see.
Maybe you do not have sufficient capital to begin a project or maybe lacking in the knowledge to make it happen, but that shouldn’t stop you from taking the first steps to attempt them. Well first you can figure out how much it will take and begin saving as soon as possible. Next thing you can do is to find a mentor who will provide you with some value added feed back for the business you want to see yourself doing in the future. See below for the common barriers I noticed for anybody looking to break into a business.
Common Barriers to Entrepreneurship:
- Capital or Invest-able Assets
- Experience Limitations
- Difficulty in Establishing a Business Plan
- Hiring a team of Legal, Accounting, and other experts
- Finding the right Marketing Plan
- Time Restrictions
Comment below if you have hidden business Ideas that you would like to succeed at? Also if you remember a few of the crazy business ideas that you saw on the fresh prince of Bel Air.