Posts tagged: savings

How to Buy Rewards Points Instead of Waiting to Earn Them

card reward pointsNot many people know but it’s true that you can buy rewards points without having to wait to earn them. This has been a somewhat hidden option all this time. You can actually top up your account by buying points for a redemption. And the best thing is that the cost of doing so is not as unreasonable as you might think it will be.
People can buy points by their Membership Rewards Linked Cards, and at $25 for 1000 points, they’re not as expensive as one might think they’d be. These points are still cheaper than buying from an airline. So in this article, we’ll discuss how you can buy rewards points and why you might want to do that.

Why Buying Rewards Points Makes Sense

The main reason to buy rewards points is to top up your account for a particular redemption. Membership Rewards points happen to a flexible currency. This means you can check how many points you have and how you wish to use them. If you’re short, then you can buy as many points as you want to use them for whatever purpose you intend to use them for.

Buying points to top up your account when you know there’s an airline seat that can be redeemed is another reason to buy rewards points. This way you can secure the seat earlier instead of waiting until you have earned the remaining points from your day to day spends. If let’s say you’re another 1000 points short, then it could take a very long time to earn that many points, and the airline seat that you’re after won’t obviously wait for you for that long.

Important Details When Buying Rewards Points

The process of buying rewards points can easily be conducted over the phone number given at the back of your frequent flyer credit card or charge card. With American Express, you have to buy points in chunks of 1000. There is no limit on the number of points that can be bought. For more details about buying points, you can visit Points Bank.

Whenever you buy Membership Rewards points you’ll have to transfer them or redeem them over to a partner program at the time of purchase. So it’s better if you buy these points with a specific purpose in your mind. Points can be purchased on request immediately, and the transfer of points is also initiated at the same time.

Another advantage of buying points is that if there is any bonus promotion running at the time when you buy points, then the points will be offered to you at the bonus promotion that is being given at that time. However, you won’t be able to earn more points on the purchase of your points.

Buying rewards points is actually very easy. All you have to do is just make an account with Points Bank and state how much points you would like to purchase and for what purpose. These orders usually take 72 hours before your purchased points can be seen in your account.

Moving Across The World Shouldn’t Cost You The Earth

moving costsAre you planning on moving abroad sometime soon? Whether you are moving for work and a new position or because you just want to try and start a new life in a new country, there are going to be some big financial burdens that could stand in your way. In fact, the cost of moving to the other side of the world can be so big that some families end up spending their entire life savings on the move. But does it really have to be so expensive?

Thankfully, you might not have to take out your entire savings to pay for your new life abroad. There are some ways you can make the transition a lot more affordable. Read on to find out more!

Ask For Moving Costs To Be Reimbursed

If you are moving because you have got a new job or your current firm wants you to relocate, there is a good chance that they will be able to help you with your moving costs. If the company haven’t mentioned anything to you as of yet, it’s worth asking them to find out if they can contribute to the costs. Sometimes, they might pay for your moving company or shipping costs. Even if they don’t cover all of the costs, they should still contribute a small amount as they are the ones making you move!

Hire Specialist Removal Firms

A lot of work and effort goes into packing up your whole life and shipping it to another country. Not every moving firm will be able to help you with this. But there are some international removalists that specialise in long-distance moves. It’s really worth hiring one of these firms as they will have a lot of experience in this kind of thing. They will advise you on the best form of shipping for your belongings, and will be on-hand to help with the practicalities of moving at each end of the journey.

Be Flexible With Your Moving Date

If you can be, it really is worth being as flexible as possible with your moving date. After all, the price of flights will go up and down depending on the time of year. If possible, you should try and wait to move until your destination’s low season. This will be when fewer tourists will be traveling there, so flights should be cheaper than in the high season.

Consider The Best Way To Transfer Money

It’s not just the practicalities of the move itself that could end up costing you big time. There are some hidden costs that you might forget about, such as transferring all of your money into a foreign bank account. Ideally, you need to wait until the exchange rates are in your favour so that you get as much for your money as possible. Even if this means waiting for a few weeks after you transfer your money, it will be worth it so that you don’t lose out on quite as much cash.

Follow these tips and your move abroad won’t be so pricey!

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.

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.

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.