Monthly Archives: December 2014
Many new parents struggle with the decision to purchase a life insurance policy for their child despite the fact that such policies are very commonplace. Life insurance is intended to meet the needs of a person’s dependents in the event of the unexpected, and children outlive their parents far more often than not, making a life insurance policy in this scenario a questionable investment on the surface.
Benefits of a Policy
Life can be extremely unpredictable, and in the unimaginable circumstance that a family loses a child, an HBF life insurance policy can ensure that their emotional suffering will not be compounded by financial turmoil. A sufficient policy can address any final costs left behind, such as ceremonial expenses as well as any educational loans outstanding at the time.
Another benefit of some types of life insurance policy is an option to save money for college education. Many life insurance policies build cash value as the premiums are paid, and this accruing value can often be borrowed against after a predetermined time period. This makes a life insurance policy for a child a functional investment in their future as well as insulation against tragedy.
Coverage For Your Child
One of the most potentially beneficial aspects of a life insurance policy taken out early in a child’s life is that the policy typically lasts as long as the premiums are paid. This can make a life insurance policy a good idea in a family with a history of hereditary illness or other genetic difficulties, as these issues can often take years or decades to fully manifest and insurance will prove exponentially more costly at this point.
The coverage an early life insurance policy provides usually cannot be revoked regardless of any later developments, which can provide ready protection for a child who eventually grows up and chooses a physical job or high-risk lifestyle. These insurance policies can also be controlled by the person listed in the policy after a certain point in many cases, making it easy for the child to purchase more coverage when he starts a family of his own regardless of circumstances.
Whenever considering a life insurance policy, it is important to remember that this type of coverage is not about death, but quality of life. Purchasing a life insurance policy for a young child is a multifaceted decision, and factors in each individual family can determine whether it can prove beneficial.
Are you trying hard to penny pinch in every facet of life? Are there certain areas in your finances that tend to have the leaky boat syndrome? Everyone struggles with keeping all the holes in their proverbial financial boat patched and once in a while it’s a good idea to take a step back to see if it needs anymore repairs!
One financial area that could be suffering is your closet. Closets seem like the endless black hole. Money goes in, but somehow you still feel like you need more clothes….and then more, and more. The cycle never ends. However, if you create a budget, shop wisely, and stick to essentials, this hole in your boat could be easily and swiftly mended!
Here are some tips to keep your closet cleaned up while making sure your wallet isn’t empty:
Budget for the times of year you know you will save big on clothes! For instance, if you know that after Christmas stores will drop their prices significantly, jump on it! Budget your money throughout the year, make a list of your essentials, and go shop. It not only saves you from financial distress, but it gives you something to look forward to.
Look for Variety:
When you shop you need to ask yourself if the items you are purchasing will be versatile with multiple other items in your closet. For instance, would the button down you’ve been eyeing match with the sweaters in your closet, and how many pants could you pair it with? Ask questions about the clothing you pick out. It will help you to narrow down your choices and will give you more selection in the long run.
Avoid the Trends:
If you must buy the latest trend then go cheap! Never spend a lot of money on an item that is bound to go out of style in a year or less. If you want something that is trendy then make sure you find a good sale and don’t invest your hard earned money on it. Even if it does wear out quickly it won’t break your heart or your bank!
Spend More on Quality:
Go for the classic items that may be more costly up front, but will yield dividends in the future. Spending extra money on a nice pair of shoes is a worthier investment rather than buying the cheaper pair and having to replace them every one or two years. Nice dress shoes, if cared for properly, could last you years if not decades. Sometimes you have to spend money to save money!
Finding designer clothes at reasonable prices can be as easy as signing onto ebay. Of course, you have to weed through some junk, but if you have an item in mind and search specifically, you may be in luck! It never hurts to try! Also, designer brands sell well on ebay. So, if you are no longer in need of certain clothes or no longer want them try to list them on there! You could end up with some more shopping money.
These simple tips could really help repair the financial black hole that we know as our clothes closet. Try sticking to them each year and see how you continually save money!
Featured image by https://dribbble.com/jakedugard
Christmas can be an expensive time of year. Between travel, gift giving and meals, it’s not difficult to blow your budget and get into debt. If you are on a fixed income, this time of year can be particularly difficult on your finances. Unless you are able to supplement your income another way, you’ll have to make do with what you have and that requires two things: realistic expectations and a plan.
Below is a great list by LILA which outlines practical tips on how to get through the holidays without going into debt.
One of the easiest ways to avoid disappointment during the holiday season is to set reasonable expectations. If you already know you are going to be on a tight budget, take a few minutes to explain that to your little ones, or discuss it with your spouse. Openly acknowledge that while you would like to be able to spend a lot on the holidays, it’s not responsible or even an option.
Readjust your expectations and find things you can do that are enjoyable. You can still celebrate the holidays on very low budget; you just need to have a plan.
Have a plan
When you have to tackle a financial burden, like holiday spending, having a plan of action will not only help you stay focused and save money, it can make sacrificing more fun and even make it possible to get more of what is really important to your family. Here are a few ideas for making a cheap holiday celebration a success:
Cut your gift list
Buying gifts for everyone you know can quickly eat up your budget. Trim down the gifting list to immediate family members and best friends. If you’re on a really tight budget, you may even want to trim it down more by choosing names from a hat and only buying gifts for the person you picked.
Make homemade gifts
Instead of purchasing new gifts for the people on your list, consider making inexpensive gifts. You can use old records to make bowls (heat them in the oven, on top of a glass bowl at 250 degrees for 5 minutes, remove and mold), make personalized CDs, create a photo collage or write a poem and put it in a nice frame.
If money is really tight; offer services instead of an actual gift. Walk your neighbor’s dog for a month, cook your husband’s favorite meal or babysit your sister’s kids for a few Friday nights so she can get some free time. These won’t cost you anything but your time and you’ll likely be rewarded with good feelings and a lot of appreciation for the thoughtful gift.
Find free events
There are plenty of ways to get in the festive spirit. You don’t have to pay for concerts and events. Find free community activities like caroling or concerts. Another fun activity: hop in your auto and check out the homes lit up with Christmas decorations.
The last, and perhaps most important tip, is to spend cash when you pay for holiday expenses. Cash keeps you honest. If you are trying to avoid debt, cut up the credit cards and pay for the holidays with money. You’ll be able to track how much you are spending much more easily and studies have shown that people spend less when they use cash because they can actually see the money disappearing.
You can embrace the season to be jolly with less money and more focus on spending time with friends and family.
The feeling of having debt hanging over your head can be stressful. If you are behind on your payments, it’s even worse. Because Bankruptcy can cause serious problems with getting loans in the future, finding a way to pay your debt off as quickly as possible is the best way to alleviate the strain and put yourself back in the black again. Here are a few tips from Low Income Financial Help to help you give your debt the old heave-ho – Get more information about different debt relief options here.
Pay the smallest debts off first: This may sound counterintuitive. It seems like it would make the most sense to pay off debts with the highest interest rates first, but this isn’t always the best solution. Paying low debts first make it easier for you to get your first success. This success is a great way to motivate you to keep moving forward.
Debt stack: This method of paying off debt is called several different things including debt stacking and debt snowballing. Essentially, you keep making minimum payments on all of your debt, except one (your smallest debt). You add whatever extra money you can with your minimum payment until you get the debt paid off. Once that debt is paid off you take all of the money you were paying on that debt and apply it to your next debt. For example:
Debt A: $450 with a $100 minimum payment and $50 extra you scrounge up each month. (Total payment: $150).
Debt B: $1,000 with a minimum payment of $200. Total payment $200.
Debt C: $2,000 with a minimum payment of $200. Total payment $200.
First you tackle debt A. Once that is paid off (roughly 3 months, if you do the math), you take that $150 and add it to the $200 you are paying towards your $1000 debt for a total payment of $350. Once debt B is paid off you take the total payment of $350 and add it to the $200 payment you are already making towards Debt C. Now your payments are $550 and that last debt will get paid off much faster.
You aren’t spending any more than you already were; you are just combining payments as other debts are paid off to get your debt paid off faster.
Cut spending: You cannot pay off your debt if you keep your credit cards handy. Chop them up into a dozen pieces and start using cash. Additionally, curb your spending every month and use the money you save to pay towards your debts. This extra cash will help your debt fall much faster.
Motivate yourself: Keep a chart of your debts and track them as they get smaller and smaller. It may seem overwhelming at first but as you keep making payments you will see your balances start to shrink. As an additional motivator, figure out what reward you want to give yourself for paying off your debt. Once your debt is paid off you can use the funds you were sticking towards debt to save up for a vacation or other surprise. The best part is that you’ll be able to afford whatever it is without the worry of debt hanging over your head.