Should Your Home Have One Or Two Incomes?

When men are wondering whether their wives should go back to work, they must remember that having two incomes in the home is more about what both partners want in the marriage. There are times when both partners want to be at work and making money. There are other times when one spouse would prefer not to work and take care of the kids. Also, there are times when one partner would prefer to work from home while the other is working outside of the house. There is more than one options for the family that chooses to have one or two incomes in the house.

Some people work in the house, and there are others that work outside the home. There is no one right way to do this, and many guys need to remember that their marriage is not like anyone else’s. These decisions are between a man and his and wife.

One Income

Traditionally, men worked outside of the house and women stayed at home with the children. This is still something that most people do in today’s society. However, the roles could be reversed if the woman makes more money or has a more promising career than the man. Men should not feel emasculated when their wives make more money than them. Plus, stay at home dads are all over the place. You would not be the first guy to stay home with the kids, and you would not be the last, either.

Two Incomes

Having both parents working outside of the house is completely fair when both are very interested in their careers and know that their kids are eventually going to move out. However, parents must consider what this means for scheduling, daycare and for their kids in general. The parents that work outside of the house should strive to get home at a reasonable hour and spend their weekends together as a family. This is a situation that works for many people when they build their schedule well.

Every man has a choice of where to work, whether or not to work and how much to work. Their wives also have that same choice. Both partners in a marriage should be able to pursue their passions ans do the things that they want to do. When one partner is stifling their creativity of passion for the other, that is not healthy.

Make a choice to have one or two incomes in the home, but make that choice with everyone’s feelings and desires in consideration. Once the couple has though through this decision, they can come to an agreement that supports the family, makes both of them happy and helps the kids to live normal lives.

Building Your Nest Egg In Tough Times

Building Your Nest Egg In Tough TimesThese days, it seems that everyone is having a tough time financially. While it may seem that every cent you get paid has to go to a bill, gas, or food, building a nest egg is more important now than ever. Having some money squirreled away can be a blessing if your car breaks down, you lose your job, or someone in your family gets sick, particularly if you live from paycheck to paycheck. Saving can be surprisingly easy, and sometimes even fun!
The first step towards saving up is making your money inaccessible. Open a savings account with a different bank than the one you usually use, but make sure you won’t get charged any fees for doing so. If your chosen savings bank is hard for you to get to, open a checking account as well and get a debit card. Next, pay yourself first. Visit your primary bank, and set up a direct deposit into your new savings account. Make sure it goes into savings, or else you won’t get any interest from your hard work! Once you have the direct deposit set up, take that shiny new debit card and put it somewhere you can’t access it without a fight. One idea is to fill a plastic container partway with water, put the card in the middle of the container, and freeze it. You could also tuck it away with your out-of-season clothes, or in the back of your spice rack. Just make sure you won’t be tempted to reach for it except in a dire emergency.

You may be thinking, “I can’t afford to put money into savings every month! I barely squeak by as it is.” That is not true. You can save, but you may have to sacrifice a little bit to get there. If coming up with the money seems impossible, it’s time to make some changes. Sit down with all the bills you’ve gotten in the past three months, and prune ruthlessly. Any redundancies in your services need to be trimmed. If you have an internet video service and cable, cut one out. If you’re paying for a house phone and a cell phone, get rid of the house phone. Never pay twice for similar services.
Once the redundancies are gone, it’s time to trim the fat. Take a really critical look at what you’re paying for. Do you have “extra” services attached to any bills, such as ring back tones or payment protection on credit cards? Get rid of them. The chances of ever having to use payment protection don’t make it worth the money you pay every month, and no one is going to be disappointed that they don’t get to hear a song every time they call.
Finally, use a budget and revise it regularly. Make sure you pull up your calendar and check what unusual expenses are coming up that month, such as birthdays, annual bills, or pre-ordered video games. Don’t forget to budget them in! Don’t forget, even little expenses add up. Every penny saved is a penny that’s earning you interest, and interest is money you don’t have to work for. If seeing your savings expand isn’t rewarding enough for you, try setting goals and rewarding yourself with a small luxury once you reach it, such as a coffee from an expensive chain or a new video game.
If you have debt, your primary goal should be to get out of it. Save a little each month ($100 or so), but focus your new found income on reducing your highest interest debt. Don’t ever stop saving to get rid of your debt, because if an emergency pops up before you’re debt free, you’ll be right back where you were. Once all your debt is paid off, put the money you were using to it off into savings, and bask in the financial security!

Financial Planning: Why Taking the Time to Seek Good Financial Advice Really Pays Off

Financial PlanningSome would say my wife and I are the adventurous type. We love traveling together, trying new things, and generally do not allow the grass to grow under our feet. A few years ago we moved away from our home town to start our life as a young married couple in a new state, with new careers, more than a 12 hour drive from the home we had known since birth.

This may not be that odd for some people, but for both of us and compared to our family, we were going places. For two Midwesterners that moved to the east coast, life has been full of adventure. We bought a kayak, stand up paddle boards, beach chairs, and have definitely maximized our days off work.
Now comes the next great transition in our lives. We have our first child due in only a few months and while keeping our eyes half closed to the magnitude of change that is about to take place in our lives, are very excited. Oh, did I mention that since finding out we were going to have a baby we bought a second home, quit our jobs, are moving twelve hours back home, and I start graduate school the week before our baby is due?
No, my wife doesn’t have a job lined up. No, I’m not going to be working while getting my MBA. No, we don’t have credit card debt piling up. Yes, I can sleep at night.
The answer to the last question, how I can sleep at night, started to get answered about two and a half years ago. My wife and I had been saving our money since getting married, but with no real purpose in mind other than building our rainy day fund. It was at about that time we decided together that I needed to find a new career.
I simply wasn’t happy doing my job anymore, which meant seeking a new path in life. At first, I had no idea how I would be able to change careers or what I would even change my career to. I couldn’t even answer how we could ever get by without having my income, let alone neither of our incomes for any amount of time.
As with many things in life, the real issue at hand was money. I sought and was rewarded with some amazing financial planning services, and that was really the key. When we decided that I would change my career, we needed help figuring out how we could ever make that happen. Now, two and a half years later, I sleep at night.
I had a complex idea of what I wanted to be able to do, but really didn’t have a good method to achieve that goal. The financial planner I contacted heard the questions I was asking every day, and was able to break down the steps we would need to take to get where we wanted to be. Their expertise was extremely valuable and worth the time spent with them, figuring out the grueling details of our finances, and where money was really going and needed to go.
Being able to buy a second home, to get a graduate degree, and knowing exactly how many months we can support ourselves until we need to have income again, were made possible because of exceptional financial planning. We are going to have loans, and those will need to be repaid. But, we know why we are taking on the debt, we know how much it will be, and we know how we can actually benefit from taking a few loans on for a few years.
Most importantly, we are going to be able to bring our son into this world and be living close to family, starting the next great adventure in our lives, together.

Understanding How Financial Advisors Make Money

Understanding How Financial Advisors Make MoneyGetting your finances in order is one of the most important things that you can do, and many people in this situation turned to a financial advisor for help in this area. Working with a financial advisor can be a wise move, but it can also be expensive. Before you hire any financial advisor, it is a good idea to understand exactly how he gets paid first. There are a number of different ways that financial advisors can charge you for their services.

Commission

One of the most basic ways that financial advisors get paid is by charging you a commission. With this type a financial advisor, you will be charged every time you make a purchase of a security. The advisor gets a percentage of the transaction or a flat fee for every transaction. If you trade securities frequently, the commissions can really start to add up. If you are a more long-term investor, this might be the best way to go because you won’t be trading securities that often.

Commission Plus Fees

Some financial advisors get commission plus fees for their services. They get commission on certain products that they sell you, and then they also charge you fees for some of the services that they render. If they help you come up with a financial plan or budget, they’ll charge you a fee for this service. Then when you buy some of the securities that they recommend, you’ll pay them a commission for this as well. When working with this type of financial advisor, it is important to make sure that you know what services they charge fees for, so that you can minimize them.

Salary and Bonus Compensation

In a few instances, companies will pay their advisors a salary and add bonuses for performance. With this scenario, the advisor gets a flat salary every year, and then gets some kind of a bonus for bringing in new customers or selling securities. If you can find this type of broker, you may be able to save some money if you need a lot of advice or help with certain processes. You may not have to pay on a per-item basis like you would with a financial advisor who charges fees.

Fee-Only Advisors

Some financial advisers only charge fees for the services that they provide. They don’t get a commission for any of the recommendations that they make, and they don’t get any kind of bonus for selling you more securities. The nice thing about working with this type of advisor is that they can give you unbiased advice about investments. They just want you to make money, so that you will continue to be a customer. They are not pushing specific types of investments only because they get a commission on them. This ensures that you get the best advice when choosing investments. The downside to using this type of advisor is that they can nickel and dime you for all of the services that they provide.

Types of Fees

If you work with a financial advisor who charges fees, there are a number of different ways that you could be charged. For example, some financial advisers charge based on an hourly fee. They keep track of how much time they spend working with you, and then they charge you based on that amount of time. Depending on the hourly rate that you are being charged, this could be a good or bad deal.

Another way that financial advisers could charge is based on a flat-fee model. With this approach, they simply charge you one fee for a package of services. For instance, they might help you create a budget, a long-term financial plan, and make investment recommendations for one price.

Some financial advisors will try to get you to pay a retainer fee. This type of fee is usually a percentage of the total amount of your portfolio or investment holdings.

Depending on your situation, one of these methods of composition may be better for you than some of the others. Look at your situation, and then try to calculate which method would save you the most money and make the most sense for you.

Rebuilding Your Credit History One Step at a Time

Rebuilding Your Credit History One Step at a TimeTalking about credit is the last thing that you may want to talk about, but by not talking about it, it can keep you from getting the things that you want, such as a new car. You can pay cash for an item, but some people are not fortunate enough to pay out-of-pocket for a car. In order for you to rebuild your credit history, you will need to take it one step at a time. That way you will not feel overwhelmed and go back into the rut that you are in.

Gather All of Your Bills

Find out what creditors are giving you a hard time. Put them in order on a table from the most important to least important. Contact the first creditor to see if you can lower your interest rate. If the debt is already with collections, the collection agency may arrange a payment plan. Sometimes, the collections agency will settle the debt, so that you can pay a lower amount, to help you pay it off sooner. Once you pay off one bill, do the same thing for the next bill until each bill is paid out.

Consider Paying More Than The Minimum

While you are paying on your debts, you may want to pay more than the minimum. It will eliminate the interest and help you to pay the debt off sooner. If you get paid more than once each month, pay on the debt each pay period. Since you are just paying on the one bill with your rent and utilities, it is likely that you will have extra money on hand to pay extra on the bill each month.

Visit Credit Card Marketplaces Online

There are credit card marketplaces that allow people to get credit cards for excellent to bad credit. Before you decide to apply for a credit card, make sure that all of your debts are paid off. You will have to apply for a credit card for bad credit, if you are in the market to get a credit card. Most credit cards for bad credit have fees that are taken out of the credit amount that you will get approved for. By paying the credit card on time each month will allow you to get a credit increase. Also, your credit score will increase over time since you are paying the credit card on time.

Rent Merchandise at a Rental Store

Rent-to-Own stores are available in almost every city. In order to rent merchandise, you have to have a valid driver’s license, pay stub to show that you have an income, and completion of a rental application. There is no credit check, but by paying on time, it will show on your credit report that you are a good payer. To make it easier for yourself, just rent one item, so that it does not become a struggle for you to make your payments.

Ask Your Bank For a Loan

Banks that you deal with on a regular basis will be more than happy to make you a loan. They may still check your credit history. If you have been paying all your other debts on time, it will show it on the computer. To make it look even better for you, you may want to wait a year until you apply for a loan with your bank. That will give you enough time to rebuild your credit and the loan officer will see that you have been a good payer for a year.

Buy The Car That You Want

Visit a car dealership to see if you can get the car that you want. Most car dealerships have in-house financing, which will make it easier for you to get approved. Even if your credit is good enough to get approved for the full loan, your monthly payments can be cheaper by having a down payment. You should at least have $500 on hand as a down payment.