Money never stays put. A simple glance at the world’s financial markets shows money always in motion. This is true of large economies, but it’s also true of individual bank accounts.

If you have any money at all, it doesn’t stand still. There are several ways this happens. If you want to get in control of your money, and your future wealth, it’s important to appreciate the way money moves and evolves. Without this knowledge, it’s hard to understand how your wealth will change over time.

Money Gets Stolen

Fraud is becoming ever more common in the personal finance space. Even if you haven’t had your own money stolen through fraud, you almost certainly know someone who has.

Between credit card schemes, data breaches, and the ongoing PPI scandal, it’s easy to lose money simply because someone else found a clever way to steal it. To keep this from happening to you, it’s important to: use credit cards (much easier to recover money stolen through fraud than with debit cards), contact Canary Claims - PPI claims company (if you have been victim of the PPI scandal), and never to put delicate personal information in places where it could easily be stolen (like in your primary email). ...continue reading

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budgeting

This guest post on budgeting is by Ryan Bonaparte, who last wrote for Add-Vodka in 2012 about common financial mistakes that young adults make. Ryan is a long-time writer and author, delving into topics including personal finance, technology, and career pursuits. He lives in the Boston area with his wife and fiercely independent cat.

Budgeting can be an amazing tool.

From the moment you begin to track where you’re spending your hard-earned money, budgeting can help you begin to understand what your habits are, where your priorities lie, and what goals you want to set in place. That’s a powerful place to be in life, as you can move past surviving paycheck to paycheck, and on to building a security net and further wealth.

I often talk to my friends about the power of moving my money away from the things I don’t care about (a bigger house) to the things I do care about (a nicer car). While you can’t have everything because of a budget, you can put budgeting into an action a plan to have anything with a bit of planning and hard work.

But efficiently earning and spending money is not the meaning of life. There are other factors to consider when deciding how to spend your money, and more importantly what to do with your life outside of budgeting. ...continue reading

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bare bones budget
via stockmonkeys.com

If you’re in debt, you may find yourself trying to balance bills, debt repayment, and miscellaneous expenses. A great way to start paying off your debt is to create a bare bones budget. This budget will show you how to live on less, and get your financial life back in order.

Go Through Your Current Budget

The first step to creating your bare bones budget is to evaluate your current budget. If you don’t have a budget, it’s time to create one. Go through your income and expenses from the last few months, and write everything down in categories. Once your current budget has been assessed, it’s time to determine your wants vs. needs.

Wants vs. Needs

Looking at your current budget, are there ways that you can cut back? A bare bones budget is exactly what it’s called...bare. It involves your needs only, with very little room for wants.

Could you be spending less on food? Could you live in a smaller or cheaper place? What about current bills? If you are trying to pay off debt a little faster, it’s best to cut bills like cable and phones until you can really afford them. There are other ways to enjoy TV for free, and you could always get a to-go phone. ...continue reading