How to Save for an Upcoming Vacation

During the colder months of the year, it’s hard to avoid dreaming of a sunny escape. And while our imaginations can drum up the most extravagant and gorgeous vacations, the realities of life mean that our wallets often can’t keep up. With everyday expenses and the efforts of saving for an emergency fund, it can be difficult to think that a real vacation could be yours. After all, living expenses are high and it always seems like there’s another cost that needs to be covered.

And while we do our best to save and spend money wisely, accidental or sudden costs can eat up a good portion of our budget. You might even find yourself in a difficult position where you need to find extra funds to tide you over before your next paycheque arrives.

The good news is that there are online payday loan lenders that can help you when you need a hand covering costs. Just follow this link to learn more at GoDay about how an online short-term loan from a reliable payday loans direct lender can solve your cash flow problems. When unexpected costs stretch your money out too thin, payday lenders can help you out.

Use Technology

There has been a recent boom in financial technology (fintech) and the selection of new apps and software available to consumers is impressive. To help you budget and save, you can use a budgeting app that automatically tracks and categorizes your spending for you.

With the help of one of these apps, you can set saving goals for yourself and track your progress. Say you want to put aside $300 every month for six months to pay for an upcoming vacation. You can set this goal and see how your money gets distributed to stay on track with your saving plan.

The Side Hustle

Do you have a skill that you can sell on the side of your regular job? Do you have the time in your schedule to pick up a seasonal or part-time job? You can save for a vacation by getting creative with how you earn money outside of your regular income stream.

This can also help with visualizing how your money gets divided. You know that the money you earn from selling your hand-made bookshelves (if you possess carpentry skills) is going right towards your vacation fund. It’s easier to conceptualize your goal and keep track of the progress you’re making. If you’re a confident driver, own your own vehicle, and have the time to spare, you can always make a little extra cash driving Uber of Lyft as a way to earn extra.

Trim Your Food Budget

We spend a lot of money on food per month, with the average Canadian household spending about $214 per person a month on food. Free up room in your budget by making smart food purchasing decisions like buying in bulk, joining a food co-op, buying more fresh produce, and ordering less takeout.

You can take out items like treats and cut back on your alcohol income and you’ll be surprised to see how much extra money you have in your wallet. Small changes really make a difference, especially for tight budgets. It’s possible to go on a vacation on any budget, you just need to plan and save accordingly.

Financial Literacy is the Key to Protecting Your Finances

Let’s play a quick game of true or false:

Imagine you have $100 in a savings account that earns 2 percent interest a year. After five years, you would have $102. True or false? (It’s false).

Let’s say you have another savings account with an interest rate that earns 1 percent a year while the rate of inflation is 2 percent a year. After a year, the money in your savings account would buy the same amount as it does today. True or false? (It’s false, again).

Are you starting to sweat? You wouldn’t be the only one. Most people struggle with these financial basics according to a slew of studies.

  • Nearly two-thirds of respondents (61 percent) failed to answer more than three out of five questions correctly according to the latest FINRA survey on financial literacy.
  • Americans didn’t perform much better in Standard and Poor’s international study, the results of which show just 57 percent of the country is financially literate.
  • Meanwhile, fewer than half of respondents in a Raddon study passed a financial quiz.

While these surveys produced slightly different results, they all have one thing in common: they show the average American struggles to understand what economists have deemed the “fundamentals” of finances — things like basic numeracy, compounding interest, risk diversification, and inflation.

These concepts help people manage their money

Whether the decision is to take out an installment loan for the first time or how to invest for your retirement, your choice has the potential to impact your finances for a long time. Choose the right option, and you’ll meet your financial goals. Choose the wrong one, and you may struggle to pay back a cash advance or retire on time.

Financial literacy will improve your chances of making the right decisions.

Getting an online installment loan and investing for your future rely on basics like interest rates and inflation. When you understand how these concepts can affect your cash loan or savings, you’ll be in a better position to find the right loan or retirement investment for your needs.

More importantly, you’ll be less likely to lock into a cash advance, stock option, or any other financial contract with rates, terms, and conditions you don’t understand — saving you from charges and other penalties you overlooked.

Education is your number one defence against financial illiteracy

It’s true — people with strong financial skills are better at money management, choosing loans and credit cards, and investing their money. But these people aren’t born with these skills — they learned them by studying the basics. That means anyone can become financially literate, too.

With April being National Financial Literacy Month, now’s the best time to start learning. Don’t worry — you don’t have to hit the books too hard. Brushing up on the basics can be easy when you check in with these resources:

  • gov: This is the official portal for the federal government’s financial literacy and education programs. It’s a convenient and easy place for all ages to explore the basics of budgeting, saving, borrowing, and investing.
  • Call 1-800-FED-INFO: If you don’t have access to the Internet, you can receive the same helpful information from financial representatives operating the government’s phone line. They can direct you towards services and benefits related to financial literacy.
  • Money Smart: Learn money management skills through the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation’s (FDIC) financial education program. It has a free podcast that goes over banking basics, budgeting, and borrowing.
  • Money as you grow: The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is a fantastic resource for parents of children of all ages, giving them the tools they need to help encourage financial literacy and smart money management in their kids.

Take some time one evening or weekend to go through these resources to find the best one for your needs. They can help guide you through simple budgeting, saving, and borrowing.

Once you brush up on the basics, you’ll be in a better position not only to manage your money in the day-to-day but also for less common situations. You’ll know what to do if you need money quickly to cover an unexpected repair, and you’ll know how to diversify your investments to reduce your risk in the future.

With greater financial literacy, simple questions like the ones up above won’t produce a thin sheen of flop sweat at your brow. Unlike most of the country, you’ll be able to answer simple questions with confidence.

How Information Systems Are Beneficial To Business Operations

There are a number of different factors that contribute to a business’s success. If the business in question requires that information flows in a prudent and efficient manner, then the establishment of information systems can help provide a more productive work environment. Information systems simplify the work process of diverse departments within an organization by making relevant data easily available. Let’s examine a few of the ways these systems positively impact a business.

Organization Of Data

Good organization is necessary for all aspects of a business to be successful including the systems that deal with data. Being able to access needed data is a key component that allows employees to make accurate decisions and solve problems. When that data is organized and readily accessible, employees are able to complete tasks in an accurate manner which improves overall productivity. Good information systems have built-in features that aid in the creation of databases. This, in turn, helps locate relevant data when needed based on numerous searchable criteria.

The Decision Making Process Is Made Easier

Information systems also prove beneficial when the time comes to make business-related decisions or when data is needed to solve problems that arise. Without easy access to relevant information, the numerous decisions that must be made daily for a business to function properly become a time-consuming waste of effort and energy. Information that illustrates patterns, trends, and eventualities are required for strategic planning and problem-solving. Good information systems are able to correlate data to pinpoint the best possible conclusions.

Aids In Information Governance

Information systems are a component that makes information governance easier to achieve. Within the business environment, information is a valuable commodity. As such, it is important to ensure that it is accurate, secure, available, and useable. Information governance is the means by which organizations can oversee and manage data to make sure these aspects remain true. Information systems aid in this process by segmenting data by department and establishing what data is necessary for job functions. This helps to organize information by work needs and also to set parameters to who actually has access to that data. In this way, security and usability is established as well as which information needs to shared between various departments.

Regardless of the size of a business, information systems should be implemented if multiple departments are tasked with divergent functions that require both exclusive and shared information. It is the best way to remain proficient as the business grows and becomes more complicated. Companies, such as Mitratech, offer solutions that provide information governance which will help determine if the implemented information systems are functioning as they should.

5 Simple Budgeting Tips To Help Any Business

In order to protect the financial future of an organization, it is mandatory to use a budget. The problem is that most business owners do not have the financial experience to properly handle budgeting. This can so easily lead to many different problems, especially in organizations that rely on services that have no connection with accounting or financing. Here at Summit Gutter Systems we fully understand how important budgeting is so here are the simple tips that helped us reach financial stability and constant growth.

Learn What A Business Budget Actually Is

Contrary to popular belief, the business budget’s purpose is not to spend everything. It is basically a guide that assists you to make smart spending decisions. It helps you to identify improvement areas, problems and good financial investments.

As the budget is created, you need to have a good mindset. Those that have a negative attitude when they start working on their budget will not create a good one. Budgeting is not a hurdle. It creates opportunities and is meant to track financial performance measures.

Know Your Business

Understanding industry and organization risks is a priority. As an example, in the event that your business is seasonal in nature, there is a pretty good possibility that the annual budget has to be broken down into a monthly approach. If it is not, a quarterly one is more appropriate.

Before you start to create the budget, think about regulation changes and anything that might impact operations in the future. Basically, you want to identify the areas where results can significantly vary so better spending decisions can be made.

Good Budgets Cannot Be Created By One Person

Small business owners often find themselves creating budgets alone but this can lead to huge problems. Whenever there are people that are accountable for the newly created budget, they have to be taken into account as the budget is written. Budget creation is often restricted just to management members but involving those that are actively involved in the business is a very good idea. As an example, an experienced factory employee can easily identify when equipment replacements are needed. Thanks to his input, you can create a better budget.

Realism Is Vital

One of the main reasons why budgets are often built to fail is that they are not realistic. Always develop budgets based on future projections and pasts results. The financial results that appeared in the past years have to be taken into account since they are the starting point of a good project. Think about costs that are inevitable and fixed. These have to be the first ones added. Then, you need to see where fluctuations can appear.

Being Conservative

Last but not least, in your budget you have to put in some safety in terms of events that could happen and that you have no control about. It is practically impossible to anticipate absolutely all factors and costs that impact projects. Because of this, being conservative is just as important as being realistic. A part of the budget absolutely always needs to be put aside to deal with unexpected events.

Tips to Save for your Dream Villa

Buying the first home might seem like a wishful fantasy especially if you have not saved enough. Although at first it may look far-fetched, you can practice some stringent measures and save a considerable amount within a short time. Investing in a home is one of the biggest investment decisions you will ever make in your life.

Here are tips to help you save for your dream house

  1. Ascertain how much you need

The first step is to determine the amount you need to save. The clarity will help you create a clear plan and access the requirement for a mortgage application. It will also motivate you to start saving. You should consider partnering with someone in the family or a spouse to save more. Extra help will help meet the target faster.

  1. Open a home saving account

After determining the amount of money you will need, it is advisable to open a savings account. You should open a saving account that is solely dedicated to home saving. Make sure you have compared the different savings accounts available to get the best interest rates. To avoid the temptation of impulse spending, you can try to give yourself some days’ notice to access the money.

iii.            Sort out your budget

Once you have opened a saving account, it is time to get your finances in order. You can use an appropriate budget planner to keep track of your income and expenses. When planning for the budget, remember to include daily expenses like lunch, coffee, and transportation. This will provide you a clear view of your finances. Also, it will help you come up with realistic goals.

  1. Manage your household costs

If you want to realize your saving goals, you should cut your household expenses. Small things such as switching off lights and unplugging chargers can help you save a good amount of money in the long run.

  1. Bring in your lunch

You can avoid buying food every day by sparing some few minutes in the morning to prepare for home-made lunch. Apart from helping you save, it is also a good way to stay healthy. There is an unlimited number of blogs and videos on the internet on how to prepare quick meals.

Emaar Arabian Ranches 3 is of the biggest off-plan properties in Dubai. It is developed by Emaar Properties which is one of the largest real estate developers in the UAE. The project is scheduled to be completed by 2021.

Take Credit! 5 Handy Tips for Using a Credit Card Wisely

Remember the day you got your first credit card? Nothing can trump the freedom it gives you. The ability to spend on whatever you want, whenever you want can be liberating. Using credit cards in the right way can see you racking up air miles to jet off on amazing adventures and boosting your credit score.

Using a credit card the wrong way, however, can lead to overspending and costly interest fees. The average American is $38,000 in debt and millennials are the most in debt of all the generations. Here’s how to use a credit card wisely.

1. Only Spend What’s In Your Bank Account

This may sound obvious but only spending what you have rather than banking on having the money at a future date is a really important rule to follow.

By doing this you ensure that you always have the money in your bank account to pay off your credit card on time and avoid interest fees.

Remember debt is not a death sentence but it’s best avoided if you can.

2. Get the App

Most credit cards now come with an app that allows you to pay off any debts you have as soon as they have gone through. You don’t have to pay off the full balance as many apps allow you to choose exactly the amount you’re going to pay off.

This means if you decide to use your credit card in a store for a large purchase – something that can boost your credit score and provide you with extra security that a debit card can’t – you can pay it off straight away.

You can instruct the credit card app to remember your debit card details so they are always on file and ready for you to pay off your credit card at any given moment.

3. Decide What To Use Your Credit Card For

Setting yourself clear boundaries about what to use your credit card for is important. If your primary goal is to boost your credit score then it makes sense to use your card for making all your purchases.

Using your credit card for smaller purchases – like McDonald’s or for public transport – might be problematic for some users. These smaller charges could soon add up and if you forget to pay them off straight away you could find yourself hit with a big bill at the end of the month.

Most debt occurs because of inaccurate thinking about money not simply because of greed or poor decisions.

If you think you need more education about how and what to use your card for learn at this site.

4. Pay Off Your Card In Full

The temptation is always to only pay the minimum amount but doing this only keeps your head about water and can soon land you with hundreds of pounds of interest payments on top of the rest of your debt.

Instead, make sure you pay off your card in full every month and you will reap the benefits.

5. Don’t Use Your Card For Cash

Credit cards are designed for in-store transactions. This is one way the credit card companies make their money, by charging the stores a commission to use their machines.

So it makes sense then that using a credit card to withdraw cash will incur a hefty premium. Use your bank’s debit card to take out money and only use credit cards to get cash in a real emergency.

Using a Credit Card Wisely Doesn’t Have To Be Tough

Using a credit card wisely is an important skill to have. But just like learning to ride a bike or learning a language it takes a lot of practice to know how to use a credit card properly.

Make sure you read the rest of our debt articles for advice on how to make credit cards and debt work for you.

7 Fiscal Reasons to Get Small Loans to Build Credit

The average American has more than $6,929 in credit card debt alone. That’s not including mortgage debt, auto loans, and student loans!

Unfortunately, credit card debt can take a major toll on your credit score, and the longer you carry a balance, the worse your score gets.

But there is hope. You can always use small loans to build credit and improve your rating.

By now, you’re probably wondering if taking out more debt to get rid of existing debt is a good idea. It seems counterintuitive, right?

The truth is, it can help you get your credit back on track. Here are a few reasons that using personal loans to build credit is a smart idea.

1. Helps Pay Off Higher Interest Rate Debt

The average credit card interest rate is 17.64 percent. You pay that interest rate on every penny you carry on your credit cards.

If you max out your cards, that can mean hundreds of dollars in interest payments each month.

Most personal loans offer much lower interest rates. Using them to pay off your credit card debt means lower interest payments for the life of the loan.

This means you’ll end up paying less to get rid of the same amount of debt.

2. Lowers Your Total Credit Utilization

Maxed out cards mean you’re using 100 percent of your available credit. This takes a huge toll on your credit score.

The higher your credit utilization is, the more it hurts your score. When you pay down the balance or use a small personal loan to pay off your cards entirely, you’ll have more credit available. The more available credit you have, the better your score will be.

But remember, because you have the credit available doesn’t mean you should use it. Instead, only use your cards to cover expenses that you know you can pay off in full at the end of the month.

3. Improves Payment History

Believe it or not, your credit score is also determined by your payment history. Missing payments because you forgot about them or didn’t have the money will cause your score to drop.

When you take out a small loan to build credit, you can set up automatic payments for the loan. The money gets taken out of your bank account every month on the same date.

You’ll never have to worry about missing a payment again. Once your payment history shows consistency, your credit score will improve.

4. You’re in Control of How Much You Borrow

Personal loans can be as little as a few hundred dollars or as much as several thousand. The amount you borrow is up to you.

You’re free to borrow enough to pay down your entire credit card balance if needed. What happens if you don’t have a credit card in the first place?

Having no credit score can be as bad as having a low credit score. A small loan helps you get started.

When you make payments every month and eventually pay off the loan entirely, you’re building your credit. You’re doing it without the hassle of having a credit card.

5. You Can Use the Money for Almost Anything

There are no restrictions on how you can use the money from your personal loan. You’re free to borrow funds to pay down debt, cover unexpected car repairs, and even pay for home improvements.

Since these loans offer lower interest rates than most credit cards, you’ll end up paying less for what you borrow.

Think of it this way: you could pay for the same things with a credit card. Doing so would increase your credit utilization and could mean hundreds of dollars going towards interest payments.

By using a personal loan, you’re helping keep your credit card balances as low as possible. This helps keep your credit score high.

6. Helps You Consolidate Debt

Personal loans are a great way to consolidate debt. Every loan and credit card you have likely has a different interest rate. This makes calculating payments tough and increases your risk of missing a payment altogether.

Consolidating your debt with a credit building loan means you’ll only have one payment to worry about each month. The more consistent you are with your payments, the better your credit will be.

And as an added bonus, you’ll pay less in interest each month. This means you can pay down the loan faster by paying more than the minimum amount each month.

7. Lets You Pay Your Bills During Rough Patches

Unfortunately, missing payments for utilities, rent, and other monthly expenses can hurt your credit. If money’s tight and your credit cards are already maxed out, what option do you have?

A small personal loan from dedicated direct lenders helps you get through those lean times. You can use the money to cover those bills and avoid collections, keeping your credit score as high as possible.

Should You Use Small Loans to Build Credit?

Every person’s situation is unique, but some people can benefit from using small loans to build credit.

Take a look at your financial situation and see what’s holding you back. Is it a high amount of credit card debt? Are you overwhelmed with multiple loans and struggling to juggle the payments?

If so, it’s something you might want to consider. There’s always more you can do to keep your finances in order in the long-run.

Check out our latest posts for helpful tips and tricks to keep your credit in check and your bank account full.

5 Ways to Claim Life Insurance After a Death

A life insurance policy is paid off by an insurer to the beneficiaries after the sudden death of a policyholder. The insurer can pay the proceeds from the policy in lump sums or installments. The benefits are paid off after the verification of the documents presented. The insurer reviews the policy and authenticates the beneficiaries’ documents and proof of death availed before any payout is made. There are many ways to claim payments for a life insurance policy. You can use any of the options listed below to make a claim and receive benefits:

1)    Through An Insurance Lawyer

Beneficiaries can approach a lawyer to claim a life insurance policy on their behalf. A life insurance lawyer will help in analyzing and interpreting the policy for better understanding. He or she will also help predict an outcome on the claim.

The lawyers may also help investigate a claim to remove any doubt and clear allegations made by the insurer. Once an insurer delays payment for a claim or cancels, the lawyer can pursue the claim too. In case of an unclear claim, a lawyer can negotiate the payout terms for you to ensure that you get to benefit from the policy.

2)    Direct Claim

Knowledgeable dependents can make the policy claim directly to the company. This process is shorter and easier too. The dependents have to provide proof of death by presenting a certificate and the original policy document. They should also provide documents proving that they are entitled to make a claim legally. Once the insurer verifies the information provided, they release the claim money.

3)    Through An Agent

Once a policyholder passes on, an assignee or a nominee can approach an agent to make a claim. The agent can be the one who insured the policy or one appointed to handle life insurance claims by an insurer. The agent helps the beneficiaries in the application and verification process. Since agents make direct contacts, it can be easier to verify a claim and offer assistance if need be. An agent also makes a follow up on the claim easing the burden for beneficiaries.

4)    Through An Assignee

Children who are below the legal age can have their guardians make claims on their behalf. The guardian can do this only with approval from the court. They can also present the custody documents as proof too before making any claim. To protect the interest of the children, payouts made are closely watched by administrators and court-appointed representatives to ensure it benefits them.

5)    Policy Finders

There are times when the deceased persons fail to share insurance policy information with their loved ones. These policies remain unclaimed for years if no beneficiary gets to learn about their existence. Once a loved one dies, you can search for the policies they had acquired through policy finders or in state insurance departments. In instances where it can be proven that the deceased had a policy, you can proceed and claim the policy. However, you would be required to provide legal documents proving you are the legal beneficiary and a death certificate. This process can be tedious and long but once done in the right manner it can bear the necessary results.