Posts tagged: budgeting

Knowing Your Retirement Options: Ways to Get a Little Extra Cash

retirement cashGenerally speaking, the kind of people who focus on retirement tend to be those who are fast approaching retirement age. But this doesn’t have to be the case! In fact, more people really should start thinking about their retirement sooner rather than later. You’re not going to be able to work forever, and when the day comes that you deserve to kick back and relax, breaking ties with the nine to five working world, you’re going to want to be able to live as comfortable a lifestyle as possible. This can only be made possible by having sufficient finances. Now, a retirement plan will be able to put all of this in place for you. But it’s always good to have a few ideas stored away and a few tricks up your sleeve just in case you find yourself in need of a little extra cash when retirement does come around. Here are just a few to keep tucked away in your mind.

Reverse Mortgages

By the time you’re looking at retirement, you may think that mortgages are a thing of the past. Hopefully, you will have already paid yours off. However, it’s always good to be aware that if you are looking for extra cash to make your retirement more comfortable, you can always take some equity back out of your property without having to sell up. This is where a reverse mortgage can come into play. In order to know exactly how much you can gain from a reverse mortgage, you will have to have a fair amount of personal information. This may include your property’s value, it’s age, and any repairs that it may need to be carried out. Your own age at the time of taking out the reverse mortgage would also be taken into account. However, for a more general idea of the money you could hope for, you can always use reverse mortgage calculator aarp.

Savings Accounts

We’ve all been taught since we were little that we should save a little cash for a rainy day. Well, believe it or not, there are likely to be more and more rainy days the longer you’ve been out of work. Many people find themselves becoming increasingly bored and wanting to treat themselves to something a little special to put a smile back on their faces. Savings accounts can provide these little extra boosts for occasional pick me ups. So open an account as soon as possible. Deposit money in it regularly. This can be a relatively small amount. Something that you won’t notice missing. The cash that you’d usually fritter away on bits and bobs that you really don’t need. However, these small amounts really will mount up over time, and way down the line, when you finally dip into the cash, you’ll really thank yourself for it.

These are just a couple of ways that you can make yourself a little comfier and more content in retirement when the time does roll around. While retirement may not be top of your priorities right now, it could take up a large part of your life, so keep it in the back of your mind at all times.

Share to Explore !!Share on FacebookShare on Google+Digg thisPin on PinterestTweet about this on TwitterShare on RedditShare on LinkedInShare on StumbleUponShare on TumblrPrint this pageEmail this to someoneShare on YummlyBuffer this page

Why You Should Not Invest in Mutual Funds Based on Absolute Returns

mutual fund investmentsWith every investment decision, investors only seek higher returns. Considered as a preferred choice for many, mutual funds offer high returns at a lower risk compared to direct equities. An investment in mutual fund allows investors to avail of the benefit of compounding interest and helps them generate optimum returns in the long term. Additionally, mutual fund investments may be made in the form of a Systematic Investment Plan (SIP) and its returns carry tax benefits.

When it comes to determining the performance of a fund, investors are not aware of what to consider. Measuring the short-term performance of the fund may sometimes lead to wrong decisions. Many consider this short-term return as a benchmark and set wrong expectations. Therefore, it is important to assess the fund correctly in order to avoid wrong financial investment decisions.

Ways in which investment returns are calculated

If you want to check your mutual fund performance, you must first understand the different ways in which the returns are calculated.

• Point-to-point return or absolute return

This is the figure that, you arrive at by deducting the final Net Asset Value (NAV) from the initial investment amount. An absolute return does not take into consideration the period for which your money has been invested or the inflation during that period. For instance, if you invested INR 20,000 in 2015 and its current NAV is INR 30,000, then your absolute earning is INR 10,000.

• Annualized returns

Each fund shows returns that are compounded and not absolute. Mutual fund returns compound over a period and the Compounded Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) shows the year-on-year growth rate of the investment over a particular duration.

Why absolute returns do not reveal the right picture

Fund managers often ask investors to stay away from considering a point-to-point return. Let us delve deeper to find out why absolute returns should not be considered as a benchmark and may be misleading.

• Reflects an incorrect financial picture

For short-term mutual fund investments of a year or less, absolute returns may show the right results, but in case the investment is for a long-term, this does not hold true.Over a longer period, the fund may not be able to sustain the same or an increased return percentage. For example, if a fund outperforms in a three-year period, you may not be assured that it will perform the same way over a five-year duration. This also does not mean that you will not earn good returns over a longer period. The three-year return could be fueled by a positive market movement and a favorable macro environment. There could be a significantly higher return in a three-year period and an average or below-average return in the five-year duration.

• Performance depends on the type of fund

The performance of the mutual fund depends on the type of fund you are invested in. Equity funds are highly volatile and the returns on the same may vary from one period to another. It is also affected due to the market conditions. CAGR does not account intermittent volatility. The equity fund may have gone up by 40% in the first year and may dip by 25% in another, but the absolute return will not provide correct information about the fund. It might only show the upswing of 40% in a particular year and misguide investors.In fact, most top-performing mutual funds perform well in the first year and then slump in the next two years. Hence, the overall performance may be determined by considering a three-year or a five-year investment period.

In order to gain maximum return from mutual funds, fund managers insist investors remain invested in the long run in order to gain maximum mutual fund returns and to bring down the impact of the market changes to a minimum. Every investor should learn how to interpret the CAGR and understand the implications of three-year or five-year returns on the investment.

The biggest benefit of a mutual fund is the compounding of interest. CAGR is ideal for measuring performance over a longer period whereas absolute returns may only measure the performance for a year.

To invest in top-performing mutual funds, investors must use user-friendly tools like the Angel Wealth mobile application. It offers customized recommendations for your financial goals. It runs an ARQ investment engine, which has no human intervention and is powered by advanced algorithms. So download the Angel Wealth mobile app today and streamline your investments.

Share to Explore !!Share on FacebookShare on Google+Digg thisPin on PinterestTweet about this on TwitterShare on RedditShare on LinkedInShare on StumbleUponShare on TumblrPrint this pageEmail this to someoneShare on YummlyBuffer this page

The Most Cost Effective Way to Have a Car

car financeIf you’re like most people used to driving, then the prospect of not having a car would be akin to the feeling a child has when they are sent to their bedroom and grounded – cars offer us freedom and huge convenience, yet they are also considerably expensive to run and own. Your vehicle can make up a large part of your household finances, so this article looks at the three most common ways of having a car; leasing, renting and owning – in order to work out which is the most cost effective option for you.

OWNING

This might seem like the most sensible choice, as at the end of the day, whilst buying a car outright – whether in cash, or on finance, is a significant expense, it is at least an ‘asset’ you own yourself. However, a car is a depreciating asset that loses its value each mile you drive and each day that passes by – it’s not like a house which appreciates in value. If you are to buy a brand new car, then as soon as you drive off the forecourt, the financial hit you can expect in terms of depreciation is in four figures!

Buying a second-hand car, particularly one that is just a few months old, seems to be one of the smartest moves you can make if purchasing a car… however, even then, the cost of insurance, road tax, MOT, servicing, maintenance and repairs can mount up to the point any ownership of a car will take its toll on your finances. This is where the less popular option of renting a car can pay dividends.

RENTING

It might seem a strange idea to rent a car, as an alternative to owning one, but if you don’t always use a car (e.g. you live in Central London or travel a lot for work) then hiring a car could prove to be the most financially beneficial to your situation. This way, you are only paying for the car when you actually need it (there’s nothing more annoying than paying for a 24 month lease, when you’re out the country for a few months, and the car is sitting in your driveway)… but more than anything, the insurance is included. When you consider how much insurance costs – renting a car that comes with fully comprehensive insurance can actually end up saving you money, particularly for inexperienced drivers or those without no claims bonus.

LEASING

The middle ground between owning a car and renting one is to look into long-term leasing; indeed, you may wish to visit intelligentcarleasing.com in order to consider your options and see what deals are available – as you can find some incredible offers particularly at this time of year. The great thing with leasing is that you aren’t always responsible for maintaining the car in terms of servicing, and if something goes wrong with the car, you can simply go back to the leasing company and they’ll replace the vehicle. Leasing offers a hassle-free option but the downside is you never end up owning the car, so a bit like renting a property – you’re not building any equity in an asset, however, with a car… it’s a depreciating asset anyway, so this shouldn’t be too offputting.

In summary, there are three main options to consider in terms of having a vehicle; and the right option for you will be heavily dependent on your individual circumstances.

Share to Explore !!Share on FacebookShare on Google+Digg thisPin on PinterestTweet about this on TwitterShare on RedditShare on LinkedInShare on StumbleUponShare on TumblrPrint this pageEmail this to someoneShare on YummlyBuffer this page

Super Easy Hacks To Running Your Household And Finances Smoothly In 2018

budgeting hacksWhether you have a family to look after, just living together as a couple, or you live on your own, running a home is never easy. There just always seems to be one thing after another. Bills to pay, chores to do, maintenance and general repairs. It never stops. It’s easy to let the whole thing overwhelm you at times. Especially if you have other commitments like a job or kids to look after. So I thought it would make perfect sense at this time of year to share with you some life hacks for making running a home and your finances smoother.

Have a household budget

Household bills can be one of the things many of us can struggle with month by month. Sometimes those costs can just spiral out of control. It’s not just those regular payments we have to make. Things like house payments or energy bills. It’s those costs that we can somehow not manage to predict as much. Things like food bills, clothing allowances and general day to day living. This is where your income can get swallowed up before you even know what has hit you. One of the biggest things you can do is regularly look over your outgoings and see if you can make some changes or save yourself some money. Speaking with mortgage brokers like Altrua Mortgage could help bring one of the biggest costs a month down or even help you release some equity for other things like home improvements or vacations. Switching energy suppliers or insurance providers can also save you quite a bit. You could then put it all together into a household budget. It can be the perfect resolve for this issue. It takes a while to get everything in check, but once it’s done, you will wonder how you ever managed before. Start by making a note of how much you bring in each month. The next step is to deduct those regular payments you pay each month, especially now you may have managed to reduce them. This should then determine how much you have left for everything else. This is where you begin to budget more carefully. Allowing certain amounts for things like food, savings, clothing and everything else. This is a basic budget. You can get many resourced online of you like a sheet to work through. You can then take it one step further and make a budget for savings. Things like birthdays and Christmas gifts. A budget can stop things like money causing you a real headache each month.

A cleaning schedule could work well

Chores are never ending. It seems the moment you tidy up it needs dusting, or the floors need mopping once more. To clean your whole house or home in one go can be difficult. Which is why a cleaning schedule could be the answer to all your prayers. This is where you workout and determine certain chores that need doing each day. It will allow you to spread out the bigger jobs and keep your home in good order on a weekly and monthly basis. You can even schedule in those yearly tasks like cleaning out the garage or clearing the gutters.

Don’t be afraid to hire help

It’s so hard to ask for help sometimes. I don’t know why but it just is. But this is where you can save yourself so much time by hiring someone in to do certain things for you. It’s not an easy way out; you are paying for the privilege. But it could free up more time for you to do other things. Life is too short, and it shouldn’t be spent constantly cleaning or working through that clothes ironing pile. It won’t be easy to find someone you trust, but I’m sure you will find the the best house cleaners for you. Just think how nice it would be to take some of those daily stresses away.

It doesn’t just mean hiring help for the interior of your home; household chores extend to your garden and the maintenance side of things. So don’t worry if you want to get a gardener to come and sort your hedges out every few weeks.

Create a family organizer to keep everyone in check

An organizer for you and your family may seem like a bit of a strange one to consider as a life hack for running your household. But keeping on top of things is what makes your home dynamic work. If you have after school activities that children need to attend. Or work meetings that you need to be aware of, then a family organizer can save you many hours stressing and allows you to be in more control of the situation. Sometimes, on some days, your partner may not need to have his evening meal because he’s working late. Sometimes your kids may need to be at school earlier due to a class trip. There are many times that a family organizer for each week can keep you all in check. Each day you will know what each member of your family needs to do or where they need to be. It will make mealtimes much easier as well as work out logistics.

Keep your appliances under regular services

The worst possible thing that can happen at one time is when your appliances fail on you. This could be anything from your fridge breaking down to your boiler stopping working on the coldest day of the year. These things do happen. However, you can do things to avoid the surprise. Having appliances and pipework regularly serviced means that you are keeping an eye on these things. An engineer may be able to pre-warn you if a certain part looks a bit ropey. This gives you the heads up to budget for those repairs instead of them coming as a surprise to you. Preparation is key to running a successful household. So do all you can to be one step ahead.

Meal planning

Finally, meal planning is one of the big things you can do to make running your household stress-free. What is it about meal times that can send your whole family in a frenzy? Meal planning is just what it says it is. It means sitting down at one point in the week and planning the meals you will eat for the week ahead. This then means you only buy what you need to cook those meals, which can save you a small fortune of your food bill. Each day you and your family will know exactly where you stand. You will know who is home for food and who isn’t, which will then have determined what you will have prepared. Mealtimes can be stressful, so make them easier on yourself by preparing and planning ahead.

I hope these life hacks get your household running like a dream.

Share to Explore !!Share on FacebookShare on Google+Digg thisPin on PinterestTweet about this on TwitterShare on RedditShare on LinkedInShare on StumbleUponShare on TumblrPrint this pageEmail this to someoneShare on YummlyBuffer this page

Four Simple Solutions To Help You Sort Your Financial Situation

financial statusSome say that money is the root of all evil. And there are definitely certain circumstances in life that would make us all believe that at some point or another. But when you find yourself with financial problems, you can definitely feel like dollars are the devil on your shoulder. While they’re there dancing away, you know that you really need to work on something to make them go away. Although it’s tempting to bury your head with everything, that’s never the best solution. You’re definitely going to want to tackle this issue face on, but you don’t always know where to start. And that’s where this post comes in.

Suffering financially can be really scary. You often worry if you’re ever going to get out the other side. And you will – but you have to make it happen. This means being transparent with your finances, being frank, and also committing to making changes. Because when you can do all three, you will be able to sort your current financial situation. Whether you’re in debt, not earning enough, or just in a bit of a muddle with everything, then it’s time to strip it all back. So let’s take a look at the four simple approached you can take to achieve this.

Budgeting Better

When you’re in a less than ideal financial situation, you have to be really honest with yourself. And this always means considering your current income and expenditure. By working on a better budget, you should be able to get things under control.

Understanding What You Earn

The first step here is all about getting to know your earnings a little better. Because we always tend to assume that we make X amount each year or month, without really knowing what we get. So if you’re employed by one company, it’s time to go through your paycheck. Then, you’ll be able to understand the income you get each month. If you’re self-employed, you should definitely start to track your earnings so that you can be more aware of the money you’re making going forward.

Tracking What You Spend

The next step is to hone in on your expenditure. And this is often what the bulk of budgeting is all about. To do this, there are different apps to track your spending that you can look to use. By ensuring that you know what you’re spending, you can not only ensure you don’t overspend, but you can often be more careful with what you spend your money on too.

Cutting Down Unnecessary Expenses

You may find that the last step opens your eyes a little. Because it’s easy to think that you’re spending a certain amount of money each month, to then realize that you don’t really have a clue. And it can then make you aware of the unnecessary expenses that you have, but that you can cut back on too. Saving on monthly expenses can be quite easy, as long as you’re prepared to be tough on yourself.

Saving Money

Then, you’re going to want to think about how you can save more. This is both in terms of having a pot of money saved up, and ensuring that you save money on whatever you buy going forward too.

Allocate A Percentage Each Month

The best way to ensure that you’re able to put some money away for savings each month, is to allocate a set percentage in your budget. That way, you’ll automatically save however much you can afford, and you won’t miss it going forwards either.

Shop Around

But you also want to make sure that you’re not spending too much money on the things that you do buy too. To do this, you definitely want to shop around. While considering the prices of different items in different stores isn’t always quick, it is smart. Because you can often save a significant amount of money buy biding your time and shopping around first.

Use Coupons

Finally, you should definitely consider using coupons too. When you never really use them, it can definitely feel odd to clip coupons or search online for discounts. But as soon as you get started, you’ll find that it’s easy to get the hang of. And if you’re really not sure how you’re going to save this way, these coupon tips will definitely help you to maximize your money every time you spend.

Earning More

Your next step is to look at your income. Because you’ve pretty much mastered your spending now, and you probably can’t get that down any further. So your next solution is to increase your earnings.

Make A Plan

While some people will earn more by not really planning for it to happen, for most of us, that’s never going to be the case. Because if you want to increase your earnings, you need to know exactly how you’re going to do it. And this means that you’re going to need to have a career development plan in place. You should have your end financial goal in mind, whether that’s five or ten years away, then work backwards and plan out what you need to do to get there.

Start Something On The Side

Another great way to ensure that you earn more is to do something on the side. If you have a particular interest or skills, you may be able to commit your evenings and weekends to it, or whatever free time you have, to ensure you make some extra money each month. From writing to selling crafts, you should definitely look into where your passion and talents can take you.

Get A Second Job

And, of course, you’ve always got the option to take on a second job too. This isn’t always going to be the best idea for everyone, but if your first job just isn’t paying you enough and you want to be able to bring in some more money for a short space of time, a second job can be a great idea. But, you will have to make sure that you have the time available to do this without it causing your stress or impacting on your quality of life.

Alternative Avenues

And finally, you’re then going to want to consider what other avenues you have to get your financial situation under control. Not all of these will apply to you, but it’s always useful to consider each in case you can find the perfect solution.

Considering Compensation

First up, you’re definitely going to want to consider any avenues that will allow you to access additional money that you’re entitled to. Because when you’re in a tough financial situation it can help. You can click here for information on payday loan repayments as a starter. But you may also have other forms of compensation that you could be entitled to due to your circumstances too.

Saving To Invest

Next up, you may also want to think about the future, and how that can improve your financial situation. Once you’ve mastered spending within your means, you could then look to save money so that you can invest in something that will make you more money in the future, such as property.

Starting Your Own Business

Finally, you may also want to think about starting your own business too. Because if you want to change your life and prepare for the future, this can be an incredible venture for you. Yes, it will take work, and it won’t happen overnight, but if you have vision, it’s something that you should definitely look to start now.

Share to Explore !!Share on FacebookShare on Google+Digg thisPin on PinterestTweet about this on TwitterShare on RedditShare on LinkedInShare on StumbleUponShare on TumblrPrint this pageEmail this to someoneShare on YummlyBuffer this page