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  • Listen To Certified Financial Planner Tonight, On Donell Edwards: VIEWPOINTS
    Understanding how to avoid making costly mistakes in managing personal finances, and achieve and maintain control of personal finances. Continue reading →
  • A New Day
    I apologize for my absence, but I embarked on a new venture that took much more time than I imagined, but it was well worth it.  In March of last year I started my own talk radio show.... Continue reading →
  • The Conversation Everyone Avoids, That Almost Everyone Should Have
    38% of American households carry month-to-month credit card debt...."Households with the lowest net worth (zero or negative) hold an average of $10,308 in credit card debt."...69% of Americans have less than $1,000 in savings, while 34% say they have no savings at all. Continue reading →
  • Important Announcement
    So, having money problems is not always the result of a lack of knowledge but can involve a person's judgment, circumstances, and sometimes... Continue reading →
  • Her Story
    Recently, a story came to light in my hometown about a 27 year old woman who was cited for a misdemeanor sex charge. She was caught by an undercover detective in a sting operation targeting escort services. It was her first night on the job. How did she get there? She said.... Continue reading →
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Listen To Certified Financial Planner Tonight, On Donell Edwards: VIEWPOINTS

How To Maintain Or Take Control Of Your Finances

Shannon Ryan
Certified Financial Planner, Founder of The Heavy Purse

In our continuing celebration of Financial Literacy Month, tonight’s program discusses How To Maintain Or Take Control Of Your Finances.  During this program we will discuss the importance of a realistic budget, understanding credit and credit scores, the correct approach to spending, and avoiding and getting out of debt.  Our special guest is Certified Financial Planner, author and speaker, Ms. Shannon Ryan.

Shannon has two decades of experience helping individuals, families, and businesses become financially confident.  She has spent her entire professional career helping real people make sense of their money.  She has been in the trenches with people as life happens to them, giving her invaluable hands-on experience and insight.  As a result, she’s learned that how you think about money is the key to financial success.

Join us for this very insightful program about the way we think about money, and the way we should think about it, and how we may do a better job of maintaining control or taking control of our personal finances.

Listen LIVE Monday – April 9th at 6:30 PM CDT at – http://tobtr.com/10710683

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A New Day

Know Your Money
Tuesday – January 2, 2018

A New Day
By Donell Edwards

 

The book is closed, the year is done, The pages full of tasks begun. A little joy, a little care, Along with dreams, are written there. This new day brings another year, Renewing hope, dispelling fear. And we may find before the end, A deep content, another friend. – Arch Ward

 

Hello to all of my followers and thank you for your support and patience.  If you have been following my blog for some time, you know that I have not written anything for almost a year.  I apologize for my absence, but I embarked on a new venture that took much more time than I imagined, but it was well worth it.  In March of last year I started my own talk radio show, CWR World News.  The title of that program was later changed to Donell Edwards: VIEWPOINTS.  On the program I interview a wide range of people on various topics with the intent of informing and educating listeners, and in some instances, hopefully changing the attitudes of listeners about social issues that are racially divisive.

After doing the program for several months, I recognized that I had an opportunity to help people through provoking thought and conversation about a number of vital issues and important causes.  However, I understood that I could not accomplish this task by myself, so I started my own talk radio network, The CWR Talk Network, which was launched in October 2017.

One of the causes that I have championed for many years is financial literacy, and one of our programs is The Lionel Shipman $hape Your Finances Show, with host and financial expert, Mr. Lionel Shipman, which is a financial and life empowerment show that focuses on our lives around money and finances.  Lionel interviews interesting guests that include business owners, financial advisors, insurance agents, educators and other professionals that show “how to” improve personal finances in many practical ways, as many of them share their own personal experiences.  The show also provides listeners with useful financial information that will help improve their financial lives and give life lessons to help them live life to the fullest. Listen to Lionel every Tuesday night at 7:30 PM Central and 8:30 PM Eastern time online at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/cwrtalkradio

 

Lionel Shipman Host: The Lionel Shipman $hape Your Finances Show

 

We are in negotiations to add another financial literacy program to complement Lionel’s that focuses strictly on personal finance, from budget planning, to getting out of debt, managing credit, saving, and investing.  Both of these programs will provide professional information about financial literacy, breaking the chain of generational poverty in some instances, and learning how to build wealth.  We hope to premier that program early in 2018.

Also, we have special plans for Financial Literacy Month in April.  Here are some of the guests that will appear on my show, Donell Edwards: VIEWPOINTS during Financial Literacy Month:

Monday – April 2, 2018  –  Everything You Need to Know to Save On Your Taxes
Guest:  Mr. Dean Michael, Chief Executive Officer and Founder of Tax Help MD

Dean Michael
Tax Expert

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thursday – April 5, 2018 – Understanding Medicare and Obamacare, and How They Affect Your Finances
Guest:  Ms. Danielle Kunkle, Medicare insurance expert and founding partner at Boomer Benefits

Danielle Kunkle
Medicare Expert

 

 

 

 

 

 

Monday – April 9, 2018 – How to Maintain or Take Control Of Your Finances
Guest: Ms. Shannon Ryan, Certified Financial Planner, Founder of The Heavy Purse

Shannon Ryan
Certified Financial Planner, Founder of The Heavy Purse

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Monday – April 16, 2018 – Successfully Overcoming Life’s Setbacks, and Boldly Facing Fears
Guest:  Ms. Betsy Pake, Author, Speaker, and Success Coach

Betsy Pake
Author, Speaker, and Success Coach

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We Would Like To Hear From You.  Are There Any Brave Souls Out There Willing To Share?  If you would like to share with our readers how “bad” spending habits have affected you, anonymously or otherwise, for our upcoming special, “Confessions Of Spendaholics,” please send your experience to comments@knowyourmoneyglobal.com.

 

 

Donell Edwards Publisher, Writer, Speaker

Donell Edwards
Publisher, Writer, Speaker

About Donell Edwards: Donell Edwards is President of CWR Media Group which includes CWR World News Talk Radio Show and CWR World News & Information Service, a daily online newspaper.  He is also a professional speaker, freelance writer, and entrepreneur.  

To book Mr. Edwards to speak at your next event, contact:

Donell Edwards Enterprises
13111 W. Markham St.
Suite 116
Little Rock, AR 72211
DLEdwards@DonellEdwardsEnterprises.com

 

Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for more information about personal money management.

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Disclaimer:  I have a Bachelor of Business Administration degree but I am not a financial planner. However, I have acquired years of knowledge about personal money management through my life experience working through my own personal finances that allows me to share that knowledge with readers of Know Your Money. The Know Your Money Blog posts written by me are my own common sense observations and opinions and are for informational use only. Although my blog includes contributions from experienced financial professionals, please make your own financial decisions based on personal research or contact a financial adviser.

Copyright © 2017 CWR Media Group – All Rights Reserved

 

 

The Conversation Everyone Avoids, That Almost Everyone Should Have

It’s Financial Literacy Month.  Do You Know Your Money?

 

Know Your Money
Tuesday – April 5, 2017

The Conversation Everyone Avoids, That Almost Everyone Should Have
By Donell Edwards  

 

According to research conducted by ValuePenguin, an organization that provides objective analysis to help consumers, 38% of American households carry month-to-month credit card debt. The ValuePenguin study also discovered that “Households with the lowest net worth (zero or negative) hold an average of $10,308 in credit card debt.” ( Sources: U.S. Census Bureau, U.S. Federal Reserve, 2013 Survey of Consumer Finances)

A 2016 GoBankingRates.com survey found that 69% of Americans have less than $1,000 in savings, while 34% say they have no savings at all. The survey cites two factors as major contributors to this problem: (1.) “One of the big reasons people aren’t saving more is likely because they are living beyond their means.” And (2.) “… credit cards and other cashless payment options such as Apple Pay have made it even easier to spend.”

Another very enlightening fact was revealed in a 2013 Gallup Poll, which found that “only 32% of American households were sticking to a monthly budget.” Which means that 68% of the population either does not have a budget or fails to stick to a monthly budget.

Alarming statistics like these demonstrate a need for personal finance management skills that many Americans are missing.

 

 

 

Personal finance management affects a variety of areas including a person’s income, family security, standard of living, and savings. Financial planning helps people determine both short and long-term goals in order to create a balanced plan to meet those goals.

As a result of my own personal experience with money management, what I have learned from those experiences, conversations with others knowledgeable about this subject, and research that I have conducted, it has become obvious to me that many people need help with personal money management. That is why I founded this blog, Know Your Money Global (KYM), in 2013 to promote financial literacy and encourage effective money management.

This blog, KnowYourMoneyGlobal.net, was designed to promote financial literacy, provide valuable news and information about personal money management, personal finance, credit, debt management, tax savings and wealth building. The blog encourages readers to create their own dynamic personal cash economy, rather than using the credit-driven economy that so many are accustomed to.

We are dedicated to fostering the concept of a community of individuals, groups and organizations that share our mission of improving financial literacy and effective money management. Because of this, our Know Your Money Global Blog features posts that combine personal experiences with the expertise of industry professionals in order to give readers well-rounded information to take away.

Additionally, we provide periodic check-ups so that readers may evaluate their progress and identify areas where they may need to focus more attention. We also provide information about valuable tools and resources that readers may use in their effort to maintain or improve their money management skills.

Beginning Monday – April 17, 2017, Know Your Money Global will introduce the free 13 week KYM Money Success Strategies Institute. The Institute will provide step-by-step instructions on how to improve money management skills, how to use credit wisely, how to get out of debt, and how to build wealth.

If improving your personal money management skills is important to you, register today for our KYM Money Success Strategies Institute, or if someone you care about needs this information, encourage them to register. To register, go to our Sign-Up Form tab and provide the required information.

There is no better time to start making knowing your money your way of life than now, during Financial Literacy Month.  The KYM Money Success Strategies Institute begins Monday – April 17th.  So sign up right now!

 

We Would Like To Hear From You.  Are There Any Brave Souls Out There Willing To Share?  If you would like to share with our readers how “bad” spending habits have affected you, anonymously or otherwise, for our upcoming special, “Confessions Of Spendaholics,” please send your experience to comments@knowyourmoneyglobal.com.

 

Donell Edwards
Publisher, Writer, Speaker

About Donell Edwards:  Donell Edwards is President of CWR Media Group which includes CWR World News Talk Radio Show and CWR World News & Information Service, a daily online newspaper.  He is also a professional speaker, freelance writer, and entrepreneur.  

To book Mr. Edwards to speak at your next event, contact:

Donell Edwards Enterprises
13111 W. Markham St.
Suite 116
Little Rock, AR 72211
DLEdwards@DonellEdwardsEnterprises.com

 

Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for more information about personal money management.

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Disclaimer:  I have a Bachelor of Business Administration degree but I am not a financial planner. However, I have acquired years of knowledge about personal money management through my life experience working through my own personal finances that allows me to share that knowledge with readers of Know Your Money. The Know Your Money Blog posts written by me are my own common sense observations and opinions and are for informational use only. Although my blog includes contributions from experienced financial professionals, please make your own financial decisions based on personal research or contact a financial adviser.

Copyright © 2017 CWR Media – All Rights Reserved

Important Announcement

Know Your Money
Thursday – January 5, 2017

Important Announcement
By Donell Edwards

Thought for today:  Your best teacher is your last mistake. – Ralph Nader, American political activist, author, lecturer, and attorney. (1934)

 

The Announcement

We previously announced plans as shown above for our Know Your Money Money Management Success Strategies Institute to begin on Monday – January 9, 2017.  Today we are announcing that the start of the KYM  Money Management Success Strategies Institute has been delayed to coincide with the launch of our new live Internet radio talk show, CWR World News, which begins on Tuesday – March 7th on BlogTalk Internet Radio Network.  We will announce the new date for the start of the KYM Money Management Success Strategies Institute shortly after the launch of our talk radio program.

We are making this decision because utilizing the radio platform along with our KYM Blog and other resources will provide participants with a more diverse range of options and tools to develop or improve their money management skills.  Also, Financial Literacy Month is in April, and that is a time when we place great emphasis on personal money management through the KYM Blog.  Furthermore, we would like for this to be your program and delaying the start of the KYM Money Management Success Strategies Institute will allow time for you to contact us and let us know what your greatest concerns are about personal money management and the areas you would like most to learn about.  Just send an email to info@knowyourmoneyglobal.com, or use the comments section on our sign-up form from the sign-up tab on our KYM Blog.

 

Make This Your Resolution for 2017 and Beyond

We know that many people make resolutions at the start of each new year, and we want to encourage you, our followers, to make it your resolution to become more financially literate and astute in managing your money in 2017 and beyond.

Although we have delayed the start of the KYM Money Management Success Strategies Institute, we still strongly encourage you to begin now to work on your resolution to improve your money management skills by doing two things:  (1.)  Subscribe to our KYM Blog if you have not already done so, and begin or continue reading the great content provided.  Just go to the KYM Blog, look in the upper left side of the blog and you will see “Follow Know Your Money via email.”  Enter your email address in the box provided, and click the blue “Follow Know Your Money” submit bar.  That’s all there is to it.  (2.)  Sign-up now for the KYM Institute using the sign-up tab on our KYM Blog to access and complete our sign-up form.  Make the resolution, and follow through.

 

Banking Savings Funds Planning Finance Money Concept

 

Why Are We Doing This?

Before you dismiss this idea and decide that the KYM Institute is not for you, and that you don’t need to make any improvement managing your money, allow me to share something with you.  If you have been following our KYM Blog for some time now, you already know about my background. If you are a new follower, or in case you may have forgotten, I write this blog and develop programs and promote financial literacy because it is personal to me.

I understand that many factors may contribute to a person having money problems, and that does not necessarily mean that person does not know how to manage money.  In my personal experience, I knew how to budget, but I KNOWINGLY made bad choices that resulted in over spending, late payments, missed payments, bad credit, and all of the other problems that come from making bad money management decisions.  Not because I didn’t know better, but because I allowed my desires to overrule my good judgment.

Some of my problem was the result of not being able to earn enough money to live the lifestyle I desired.  I’m not talking about a lavish, exorbitant lifestyle, I’m talking about just having a safe and comfortable place to live, a dependable vehicle and the resources to maintain it in good condition, and to afford the basic necessities of life; food, clothing, and healthcare.  So, instead of accepting the fact that I had to live within my means until I could get into a career position with a salary that allowed me to do the things I wanted to do, I ignored the voice of reason in my mind and made bad spending decisions.  So, having money problems is not always the result of a lack of knowledge but can involve a person’s judgment, circumstances, and sometimes their emotions.

Although I was at one time a prime example of one who DELIBERATELY CHOSE to make bad money management decisions that I knew would result in negative consequences, I worked very hard for a number of years and overcame my bad decisions.  I restored my credit, I got a career position with a major corporation where I worked successfully for over eleven years until I was a victim of downsizing.  I went back to college and graduated summa cum laude and earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and studied economics, money and banking, accounting, business mathematics, and managerial finance.  These courses all helped me to not only understand the principles of personal money management, but I also got a much better grasp of our economic system and Keynsian economics, which was very enlightening and helped me make more sense of the financial system.  I feel that all students should be taught economics in high school, but unless things have changed in the last several years, very few teach economics as a part of their curriculum.  If I had received a basic education in economics in high school, I truly believe that I would have determined to live within my means regardless of my emotions, desires, or circumstances.

That is why this institute is so personal for me.  I hope that by sharing my experience and knowledge, and with the assistance of some very special people in the finance industry, hopefully, I can help as many people as possible avoid the catastrophic money management mistakes and resulting consequences that I made.

 

Who Is the Know Your Money Money Management Success Strategies Institute For?

Yes, the KYM Institute is for those who have problems or need help money management.  But it is also for those like I was, who know better, but because of inadequate income, loss of job, long-term health issues, or who just lack the willpower to control their spending, make very poor money management decisions.

As I have stated already, managing money is not always about a lack of knowledge, it is often a lack of willpower.

 

We Want To Help!

Regardless if you are comfortable with your money management skills, or you feel that you may need some help or just want support to help you resist giving in to the tendency to make decisions about your money that make you feel good, rather than making decisions that are in your best interest, don’t miss out on this opportunity to work on your money management skills because you are too proud and think you can handle things on your own.

Sure, you probably have the knowledge and ability to manage your personal finances, but can you improve?  In all honesty, are there areas where you really need to make improvement?

Let us help you, so that you can excel at managing your money.  Sometimes all a person needs is a support mechanism, or a resource to measure or review decisions against before they are implemented.  Allow us to support you in these ways through our KYM Institute.

 

The Next Steps

If you are really serious about making constructive changes in your personal money management habits, here are the next steps you should take.  Sign up now for the KYM Institute using the sign-up form on our KYM Blog to ensure that you receive news and updates about the program and that when the program begins you receive all of the tools and resources that will be provided for participants.

To emphasize, we really want this to be your program.  Delaying the start of the KYM Institute will allow time for you to let us know what you would like to learn from the institute and what specific questions you have, or what areas you feel you need help with.  Do not delay, take some time right now and give this some serious thought, then send your questions, suggestions, or comments to us by email at info@knowyourmoneyglobal.com, or use the comment box on our sign-up form under the sign-up tab on our KYM Blog.

We strongly encourage you to participate in the institute, and we look forward to working with you if you do.  

 

We Would Like To Hear From You.  Are There Any Brave Souls Out There Willing To Share?  If you would like to share with our readers how “bad” spending habits have affected you, anonymously or otherwise, for our upcoming special, “Confessions Of Spendaholics,” please send your experience to comments@knowyourmoneyglobal.com.

 

 

Donell Edwards Publisher, Writer, Speaker

Donell Edwards
Publisher, Writer, Speaker

About Donell Edwards: Donell Edwards is President of CWR Media Group which includes CWR World News Talk Radio Show and CWR World News & Information Service, a daily online newspaper.  He is also a professional speaker, freelance writer, and entrepreneur.  

To book Mr. Edwards to speak at your next event, contact:

Donell Edwards Enterprises
13111 W. Markham St.
Suite 116
Little Rock, AR 72211
DLEdwards@DonellEdwardsEnterprises.com

 

Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for more information about personal money management.

twitter-ilike-us-on-facebook

Disclaimer:  I have a Bachelor of Business Administration degree but I am not a financial planner. However, I have acquired years of knowledge about personal money management through my life experience working through my own personal finances that allows me to share that knowledge with readers of Know Your Money. The Know Your Money Blog posts written by me are my own common sense observations and opinions and are for informational use only. Although my blog includes contributions from experienced financial professionals, please make your own financial decisions based on personal research or contact a financial adviser.

Copyright © 2017 CWR Media – All Rights Reserved

Her Story

KYM Money Management Success Strategies Institute begins Monday – January 9, 2017. Sign Up Today.

Her Story
By Dwight Harshaw, BBA, Personal Finance Counselor

Dwight Harshaw, BBA

Dwight Harshaw, BBA

Recently, a story came to light in my hometown about a 27 year old woman who was cited for a misdemeanor sex charge. She was caught by an undercover detective in a sting operation targeting escort services. It was her first night on the job. How did she get there? She said she lost a second job, she was going through a bankruptcy, and her wages were being garnished. Her financial problems overwhelmed her and drove her to making an unfortunate decision, which destroyed her young career. I don’t know her and this is not a condemnation. I have great empathy for her. I am captivated by her story because-before she resigned-she was a high school algebra teacher, with a master’s degree, in her fifth year of service. What happened?

I don’t know any more than what has been publicized but in looking and speculating about her situation through a personal finance lens, I think she may have found herself in the circumstance that a lot of young people and people in general are in; they are besieged with debt. The average college graduate is nearly $20,000 in debt. (Source: Demos.org, “The Economic State of Young America,” May 2008) Many have fallen prey to the constant stream of messages (advertising) that are designed to persuade people to value things (depreciating assets, junk) more than money (financial security). Once young graduates get their credentials and jobs, they want the material accoutrements that they believe they should have. On top of school loans and credit card debt, they pile on more debt. And then, there are the ordinary living expenses of life to contend with. Before they know it, they find themselves in unsustainable financial predicaments. More attention needs to be given to the importance of wealth building, especially at the start of a career.

 

Stylish Woman Dancing with Martini in Hand

 

Wealth Building

Wealth building is simply being knowledgeable about money and making it work for you more than it works for others. To become a wealth builder, there are 4 things you should do. You should steer clear of new debt, establish an emergency fund, pay off your student loan debt early-if you have any, and save for your long term future.

 

Avoid Debt

The young lady is bankrupt and suffering wage garnishment. When credit is so easy to obtain, it is hard to be responsible. We use it to buy non-financial things that give us temporary pleasure. We buy expensive wardrobes of which the styles come and go; we buy new cars which lose value as soon as the deal is done; and we purchase things that we simply don’t need, but the debt on those things goes on, long after the usefulness and excitement is over. Credit should be used responsibly-never! Okay rarely. Debt avoidance is a virtue.

 

Emergency Fund

If she had an emergency fund, she might not have been faced with a decision that put her career in jeopardy. An emergency fund is a fund dedicated specifically for extraordinary immediate crisis needs; it smoothes out a rough financial time. Car repairs, job lost, medical bills, household maintenance problems or things that cannot be paid for with out-of-pocket cash qualify as emergencies. It should be a priority to fund it with at least 1 to 2 thousand dollars initially and with 3 to 6 months of your take home pay ultimately.

 

Pay off student loan debt

Some are fortunate to not have student loan debt when college life is over. If that is not your fate, I have this advice; pay your loans off as soon as possible. Double your payments or add an extra amount to reduce the total interest and time that you will pay on your loan(s). Be sure to follow the protocol of the lender for early payoff. The sooner you pay off your student loan debt, the sooner you can get on with building wealth.

 

Retirement

The money you save early on in your career will be the most valuable when you retire. The elements of time, dollar cost averaging, and compounding are a wealth builder’s best friend. Save to the maximum level in tax advantaged retirement plans offered by your employer. If nothing is offered or you can afford to save more, establish a traditional or Roth IRA and fund it to the max or with as much as you can. Ultimately you want to save at least 15% of your annual income for the future because the burden of providing for your retirement is on your shoulders. The money you save early will be worth more and be more useful in the years to come than the value of any consumer item you may buy today.

Her story is all of our stories. All of us have made unwise financial decisions. On a positive note she is young, smart, and hopefully ambitious. She will recover over time and this will all be a distant memory. Time heals. When you find yourself off track financially, get back on. To be a wealth builder, remember this; it is wise to pay with cash rather than with credit, have money set aside for a crisis, pay your debt off early, and save for your long term future.

 

About Dwight Harshaw: Dwight Harshaw is a personal finance counselor, realtor and writer. He has a BBA from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock in Finance with an emphasis on financial planning.

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Copyright © 2016 CWR Media – All Rights Reserved

Know Thyself

KYM Money Management Success Strategies Institute begins Monday – January 9, 2017. Sign Up Today.

Know Thyself
By Dwight Harshaw, BBA, Personal Finance Counselor

Dwight Harshaw, BBA

Dwight Harshaw, BBA

About Dwight Harshaw:  Dwight Harshaw is a personal finance counselor, realtor and writer.  He has a BBA from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock in Finance with emphasis on financial planning.

 

I was watching an Oprah rerun one afternoon when Iyanla Vanzant was her guest. I would describe Iyanla as a personal-spiritual empowerment guru. During the 1990s my wife and I purchased several of her books and recordings-for ourselves and others-and attended some of her lectures which were very helpful for personal growth, clarity and empowerment. In addition to being an author and lecturer, she is an ordained minister, attorney and a past featured expert on Oprah, and now has her own show on the Opra Winfrey Network (OWN), Iyanla, Fix My Life.

Earlier in her career at the height of her popularity, Iyanla landed her first television talk show. For her, the last decade of the 20th century was financially rewarding.  But then, Iyanla suffered devastating personal and financial setbacks. She lost her beloved daughter to cancer, her marriage to the love of her life dissolved, the television show was cancelled, and she lost her fortune which is the area of my focus. How did it happen?

She told Oprah that losing her money was the result of, “being a millionaire with a ghetto mentality.” She lost her money because her attitude about finance did not change with her neighborhood.   Before she had money, she spent all she earned. It took all she earned to live from week to week. When she became wealthy she continued living that way. The only relationship she had with money was spending it.

 

Woman with Shopping Bags --- Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

Woman with Shopping Bags — Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

 

What happened to Iyanla happens all the time however we marvel at those who have the farthest to fall. Her mistake was not paying attention to where her money was going and not watching the people that allowed her to fall. It is important to always know your current financial condition. If she had practiced that, she would not have spent money on a building instead of paying her taxes which led to the unraveling of her empire.

To know where you stand currently, simply gather and organize all of your financial information. That would include all things financial i.e.; check stubs, tax returns employee benefit information, insurance (all types), credit cards bills, mortgages, student loans, auto loans, retirement plans, and living expenses, just to name a few. Look at it, analyze it and determine if what you’re doing is in sync with your goals. If it isn’t, then you will have to make adjustments. Adjustments could be living by a budget, selling an asset or getting a second job.

You should always know your current financial condition if you want to be financially secure. Based on your condition you will be able to use the information to make wise decisions about your future.  If you find that this step is difficult for you, seek counsel from someone who has demonstrated financial wisdom or a financial planner that you feel comfortable with. It is important to know what you use your money for.

Iyanla has risen again financially because she is still a sought after speaker who has another powerful healing message to deliver, and she has a hit talk show on the OWN network.  She will likely make a second fortune and keep it.

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Copyright © 2016 CWR Media – All Rights Reserved

Saving Is Not Optional!

Donell Edwards, Blogger

DONED2014 SmallAbout Donell Edwards: Donell Edwards is President of CWR Media and is also founder and publisher of The College World Reporter (CWR) magazine and CWR World News & Information Service.  He is also a professional speaker, freelance writer, and entrepreneur.  To book Mr. Edwards to speak at your next event, contact:

Donell Edwards Enterprises
13111 W. Markham St.
Suite 116
Little Rock, AR 72211
DLEdwards@DonellEdwardsEnterprises.com

Thought for Today:  The habit of saving is itself an education. It fosters every virtue, teaches self-denial, cultivates the sense of order, trains to forethought, and so broadens the mind. – Thornton T. Munger, American Scientist (1883 – 1975)

Know Your Money
Tuesday – December 6, 2016

Saving Is Not Optional!
By Donell Edwards  

 

There are many attitudes and philosophies about saving, but there is one factor that cannot be ignored in achieving financial security, and that factor is that saving is not optional.

Emphasis On Saving

Over the years in this blog we have discussed saving numerous times because of its importance.  In fact we featured a special series on saving in May of 2014.  The series included:  Getting Started – Do You Have What It Takes? published on May 12, 2014.  The second post in the series was Debt Management, Creating Income Streams, Savings, which was published on May 13, 2014.  The last post in the series was Making The Most Of your Savings published on May 16, 2014.

In addition to the special savings series we also published Knowing Your Personal Finances: Are You Ready to Save?, Starting An Emergency Fund, and Time To Change Your Thinking About Saving.

 

Saving Is Not Optional!

                                   Saving Is Not Optional!

 

Why Saving Is Not Optional

We are revisiting this topic today in view of a survey conducted by GoBankingRates in January 2016 which found that 1 in 3 Americans has $O (none, zilch, nada)  saved for retirement, 42 percent of Millennials indicated they have no retirement savings, and about 75% of Americans over 40 are behind on saving for retirement.

This follows a pattern that has existed now for over a decade, and continues to be a major issue in achieving financial health.  If any of those statistics apply to you individually you should be gravely concerned.  However, as we have also pointed out in this blog many times, a person must first have the circumstances to be able to save.  I speak from personal experience and know for a fact that some people really know they should save and want to, but just can’t because of their current circumstances.

What If You Just Can’t Save?

So, if you are reading this and are thinking “I know I need to save, but I just can’t right now because it takes everything I have to just get by, and most of the time there is not enough to take care of my living expenses.”  You have some challenges, and your goal should be to continue to work to change your circumstances so that you can save by taking on additional work if you are not already doing that, or by working overtime if it is available.  Also, by carefully examining your budget and eliminating everything except essentials, real essentials, such as shelter, food, utilities, and healthcare. Implement a spending moratorium, and don’t make any new purchases until you work yourself out of the situation that you are in.  The point is, don’t accept your current situation as permanent, make whatever changes and sacrifices you need to make to get your financial house in order, and once it is in order, continue to maintain a strong financial foundation.  The blessing of being in a less than favorable financial situation is that it forces you to make positive adjustments that will benefit you the rest of your life, if you are willing to work to overcome all of the problems holding you back financially.

Your Attitude Matters

On the other hand, if you have the means to save but just don’t see the advantage, consider what will happen to you and if you have a family, what will happen to your family if you do not have funds set aside for emergencies.  These could come in the form of the loss of employment, which is very possible in today’s economy.  Or it may be the result of you or a family member being the victim of a long-term health problem or disease.  Or perhaps it may be the result of an environmental catastrophe such as a flood, tornado, or hurricane.  If you do not have funds set aside for these things, how will they impact your finances?

Even if you have insurance to help with some of these issues, in most instances you are still exposing yourself to substantial financial loss.  That is why setting aside emergency funds is so very important to financial stability.

What You Can Do Now:  Pay Off Your Debt

The first thing we suggest is that you pay off all outstanding debt, with the understanding that this probably will be a long-term goal.  As you pay off a debt,  take the money you were using to pay that debt and apply it to another debt, and continue this process until all of your debt is eliminated.  The trick is not to incur any additional debt while you are doing this.

What You Can Do Now:  Control Your Spending

Learn how to identify and eliminate wasteful spending.  Also, improve your shopping skills and learn how to plan your shopping and look for bargains and save on grocery, clothing, and other items or services you purchase.  Become a coupon clipper and use coupons to help with your savings on your purchases.  Consider using SmartPhone apps that can help you save if you own a SmartPhone like Ibotta,  SnipSnapSavingStar and Coupon Sherpa.  Always look for ways to save on purchase and control your spending so that you can save for the unexpected, and eventually to build wealth.  Make sacrifices willingly and do not give in to impulse buying.  Make credit card payments early or on time and pay more than the minimum required to improve your credit rating, which results in a higher credit score and lower interest rates, and which will help you avoid late charges.

As we have mentioned previously in this post in order to save there must be funds to save.  Those funds should come from effectively managing the income that you have, implementing and closely following your budget, and paying down your debt.  A key factor in your success will be how well you learn to control your spending.  Without being redundant but to emphasize, be aware that controlling spending takes sacrifice, willpower, determination, and a willingness to change.  Make the commitment to yourself to do these things.  If you happen to receive income occasionally from other sources, don’t go on a spending spree and waste it all, but use some of that money for your savings.  You should develop a savings conscious mentality with any money that you receive.

What You Can Do Now: Earn More On Your Current Job Or In Your Career 

Here’s how:

  • Prepare yourself for success, a job promotion or raise by becoming an avid reader.  Read, read, read.  Read trade magazines and learn about what is going on in your industry.  Be a resource for your supervisor and management team.  Be the person that becomes known as the guru in your office.  Study the company’s internal reports, newsletters, and any other information that will educate you about the company’s goals, objectives, competition, projections, etc.
  • Attend seminars related to your current position and further educate yourself or learn new skills that can be utilized in your current position or to help you to advance your career.
  • Become close friends with your human resources manager.  Find out what options you have for career advancement and what you need to do to position yourself for success in pursuing those positions.
  • Be open to the idea of returning to college to get additional education.
  • If overtime is available, be willing to work overtime to increase your income.

What You Can Do Now:  Create New Income Streams

You can create a new income stream by starting a home based business.  The power of a home based business is revealed in this comment from the U.S. Small Business Administration website:  “What do Apple Computer, Hershey’s, Mary Kay Cosmetics, and the Ford Motor Company have in common? These well-known corporations all started out as home-based businesses. In fact, more than half of all U.S. businesses are based out of an owner’s home.”

In addition to having an additional income stream from starting a home based business, there are some very good tax advantages as well.  Obviously, everyone does not have the desire or the drive to have a home based business.  But if you have the entrepreneurial spirit, you are well organized and are good at time management, and you are willing to learn, having a home based business can provide you with many rewards.

How To Save

If you are currently in a position financially to start saving but it is something you just have not done and would like to start but need some ideas on how to get started, here is a great idea.

I was listening to the radio a few months ago and heard about a fantastic way for people who have very little money to use a portion of their income to save $,378 within a year.  Then this process may be repeated over and over again, or modified to increase the amounts and save more.  The idea is to get into the habit of saving, to convince yourself that you can save.

I did some research after hearing about this saving method and discovered an outstanding blogger, Lisa Bedford, and her blog, The Survival Mom – http://thesurvivalmom.com/.  Lisa shared information on her blog about this interesting saving method known as the 52 Week Challenge.  If you are looking for a place to start, this may be just what you need.

Where To Save

One of your concerns, justifiably so,  may be where to save your money, since the interest rates at most banks is so very low it is almost not worth even putting money into them.  The question then is where is the best place for savers to save their money?

In researching this question and discussing it with some of the people in the finance industry, I discovered that credit unions generally pay more interest than banks.  In May 2014 GoBankingRates.com published an article, Highest Savings Account Rate Is 40X the National Average, which included a comparison chart that shows the average savings account rates over the previous year for banks and credit unions and the national average, and the change from 2013 to 2014.  The article also lists the 10 best savings accounts based on data from the GoBankingRates database.  So, credit unions are a good choice.

For those in the military, United Services Automobile Association (USAA) is a good option.  This company provides banking, investing, and insurance services to people who serve or have served in the military and their families.

Another option is to purchase Certificates of Deposit (CDs) if you are prepared to leave the money in the account for at least 6 to 12 months.  Since you should be saving for the purpose of creating an emergency fund or to accumulate enough money to invest, leaving the money in the account for up to a year should not be a problem.  In some cases the interest on CDs may be higher than the interest in banks.

So, do your own research, and look for the best deal.  Also, make sure to read the fine print because there may be penalties for making more withdrawals than allowed, for failing to meet the minimum balance requirement, and there could be other hidden penalties or fees.

A Word For Millennials and Gen-X

A word especially for our young readers, the Millennials and gen-Xers.  The statistics referenced earlier in this post indicate that Millennials and Gen-Xers are among the highest percentage of Americans who have little or no savings.  This may be interpreted as either a lack of appreciation for the importance of saving, or a lack of information and understanding about the importance of saving.  I can remember when I was in my twenties I did not really appreciate the importance of saving.  I knew that it was a good thing if I did, but even with my parents encouraging me and repeatedly trying to help me appreciate how important it was to save, I still viewed it as something optional that I could do later.  At that age, I felt that I was “bulletproof,” “untouchable,” that I could conquer the world on my own terms and ignore all of the wisdom that had been made available to me.  I learned later in life how very wrong I was.  Thankfully, I learned before it was too late, but it was still very, very, very costly to me.

If you are a young person and you are reading this, 18-35 years of age, please take some time to think about how you manage your money.  Think about your future.  Think about all of the things in life that you have not prepared for financially in the event you lose your current income.  Will you be able to have a place to live, or will you be forced to move back home with your parents?  Will you be able to keep your vehicle, or will you  be forced to lose it?  Will you be able to continue to take care of your family if you have one?  What will happen to your spouse and children?  These are some very important potentially life changing scenarios that should be given every consideration.

If you are a mature reader and you know a young person that needs this information, perhaps your own child, or a relative or colleague or business associate, recommend this blog post to them or send it to them.

We also encourage every reader who feels the need for assistance with their own money management skills, to help get out of debt, control spending, and begin saving, to sign-up for our 13 week KYM Money Success Strategies Institute, which starts on Monday – January 9, 2017.  This program will provide step-by-step instructions on how to improve money management skills, use credit wisely, get out of debt, and build wealth, featuring daily video support during the first four weeks.

We will also be available to help with any questions enrollees may have.  So, make this your New Year’s Resolution, to enroll in our KYM Money Success Strategies Institute.  To enroll, just click here.  And remember we start Monday – January 9, 2017.  SIGN UP NOW!

 

We Would Like To Hear From You.  Are There Any Brave Souls Out There Willing To Share?  If you would like to share with our readers how “bad” spending habits have affected you, anonymously or otherwise, for our upcoming special, “Confessions Of Spendaholics,” please send your experience to comments@knowyourmoneyglobal.com.

 

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Disclaimer:  I have a Bachelor of Business Administration degree but I am not a financial planner. However, I have acquired years of knowledge about personal money management through my life experience working through my own personal finances that allows me to share that knowledge with readers of Know Your Money. The Know Your Money Blog posts written by me are my own common sense observations and opinions and are for informational use only. Although my blog includes contributions from experienced financial professionals, please make your own financial decisions based on personal research or contact a financial adviser.

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