5 Things You Should Know Before You Plan To Cover The Costs Through Wedding Loan

Getting married anytime soon?

The most important thing about the wedding is how you’re going to cover the costs. And if you’re planning to take a wedding loan to cover the costs then hold on and give a heed to the 5 necessary things to consider. According to the survey by the Knot, the national average cost of a wedding is $33k. But you don’t have to match that figure to have an awesome wedding; instead, you can make your wedding a wonderful experience at any budget and without going for a wedding loan.

There are 3 key strategies to follow:

  • Fix a budget and stick to it
  • Set priorities
  • Start saving as soon as you say those 3 magical words

We share with you 5 things to consider before you plan to cover the costs of your wedding through a wedding loan.

5 Things to consider before you go for a wedding loan:

1. Wedding loans- what is it?

In general, a “wedding loan” doesn’t exist and all you can do is just take a personal loan for your wedding. Most people either choose to go for a credit card purchase or a wedding loan. In either way, you are kicking off your marriage with a future of debts.

2. How much money does a wedding loan offer?

Okay, if you still want to opt for a wedding loan then you would want to know how much money you can get with such a loan. The loan amount can range from $1000 to $50,000. There are lots of online companies which offer a loan without any prepayment penalties such as Upstart.

3. Process and documents required to get a wedding loan

If you’re planning to take a personal loan to cover up your wedding costs, then there are a couple of things you need to consider. How eligible are you for the loan and what factors influence your affordability?

Here’s what you need to get a personal loan to cover your wedding costs:

• A good credit score and rating

The first thing that would affect your loan affordability is your credit score. How?

Your credit score is a number that defines how you manage your finances, debts etc. This number is calculated based on the following factors:

  • Your payment history
  • Your debt history and your current debts
  • What type of credits you have
  • For how long your credit accounts have been used
  • Your credit limits and how much you’re using

In general, having a score above 700 is considered a good credit score. Not sure what is your score? There are lots of online calculators to know your credit score.

• All other requisite documents

Apart from your credit score, you will have to produce all the necessary documents to apply for a loan such as:

  • Your proof of income
  • Bank statements
  • Any debt statements such as mortgage, student loan, home loan etc.

The institution where you apply for a loan might have specific requirements, qualification etc. You need to find it out from that institution for the details.

4. Should you go for it?

As in the case when you don’t have enough cash to cover the wedding cost, you opt to go for a credit card or a personal loan. Be it anything, you are starting your new phase with a debt-full future. And thus, the decision should be made by discussing with your partner as its going to affect your financial decisions after marriage. It’s a call to be taken by both of you whether you want your phase to begin with a financial crunch just after you come back from your honeymoon. If you choose to have a financially balanced future, then there are alternate ways in which you can have a wonderful wedding at the cost you want.

5. Are there any alternate ways to cover the costs?

Let us have a look at the alternate ways available to cover the cost of your wedding without opting for a wedding loan or credit card:

  • Best thing to do is get married when you’re well prepared not only emotionally but financially as well. Take time and start saving for the big day
  • Have an out of season wedding or a Saturday wedding
  • Cut costs on a photo shoot, décor, cake, guests etc.
  • Wedding location & reception: Pick a municipal park, beach, a backyard theme etc. as the big day location.
  • Choose a simple food menu in place of exotic cuisines
  • DIY options for car décor, cake, and other essentials

Summing up:

Budgeting for your wedding can be an arduous task. But instead of going for a wedding loan, you can always consider other ways to save costs and still have a dream wedding.

Personal Finance

4 Golden Rules Of Personal Money Management That You Need To Know

Personal money management is all about how you manage your finance, invest your money and control your spending habits. It is something that you don’t get to learn from school but learn from your experience. It might take some years to become a pro with personal money management but learning the basics is easy. To get started, let us understand the basics of personal money management that will help you to get a groove of your money. Once you get started with the basics then you will be able to create a budget that works for you and start saving & investing money.

We share with you 4 golden rules of personal money management that you need to know for a better financial future. Let us understand how these 4 rules would help you to manage your finances in a well-organized way to leave some room for savings and investment.

The 4 Golden rules of Personal Money Management:

#1. Know the basics of personal money management

You would have grown up learning the basics of maths but not aware of the basics of money management. The basics are as simple as it sounds. In short, your mindset and your habits would define your financial future. Let us start with the basics first:

• Your expenses should never exceed your income

Are you spending more than what you earn and falling in the heap of debts? Then its time to analyze your expenses and know where your hard-earned money goes at the end of the month. If you spend less than you earn, then you’ll have some money left which you can use wisely (either save or invest or do both)

• Look for alternate ways to get more income

Never get satisfied with one income if you wish to become financially secure. You can get second income through lots of ways such as share your knowledge and take tuitions, sell your art, write reviews, blogs etc. A second income would help you to clear off debts soon, reach your financial goals faster or have more savings.

• Start saving as soon as you start earning

The common mistake which everyone does is start saving only when retirement is nearing. If you start saving as soon as you start earning, you would end up retiring as a millionaire.

• Spend every penny wisely

Every penny you spend matters, so it’s better you spend it wisely. Spend on the things that you need and not want, there’s a thin line between both.

• Clear your debts before the deadlines

To avoid paying for the extra interest on the debts, clear off the debts before it crosses the deadlines.

#2. Create a workable budget and follow it

The next important rule is to create a workable budget and stick to it. All you need to do is list down your monthly expenses and income (in separate columns). Now, separate out the essentials such as rent, utilities, phone bills, groceries etc. Analyse the rest and look for the areas where you’re over-spending. Fix an amount to spend every month based on your income and the necessary expenses. For sure, you will be left with some money to save or invest. This is how you make a workable budget.

#3. Use the right tools in the right way

How to save money effectively- should you invest it on something or save in bank accounts? More than just saving money, it is important to do it in the right way.

• Look for investment options based on the risk you can afford

If you started managing your finances well, then you would be left with some savings. If are planning to invest it, then you need to know about the risks involved, profit share etc. You can invest that money in stocks, bonds etc. Before you decide on investing, know about the risks involved.

• Pick the bank that gives you better interest rates

When you choose to save in bank accounts, it’s essential to know about the interest rates, minimum fee, fixed deposits etc. Make a list of the local banks with the interest rates they offer and then choose the one that suits your needs.

#4. Start saving for the future, today

Don’t wait for the right time to start saving for your future. The simple motto is starting soon, save soon. When you’ve just started earning, it might look difficult to save. But even if you manage to put a $100 into your savings, it would make a huge difference in the long run.

Summing up:

Getting hold of your finances is not that easy and doesn’t happen in a day. You will notice a difference in the way you handle your finance, once you understand and follow the 4 golden rules of personal money management mentioned above.

Personal Finance

5 Important Steps To Shape Yourpersonal Finance Management

What if there was a shortcut to handle money? We all would love to get the knack of it and would never get stressed with finances. Do you have the feeling the money just slips out of hand and there’s no room for savings? Then, all you need to do is scrutinize your financial records and know how to spend your money. Remember that it’s never too late to start especially when it comes to giving a new shape to your personal finance management. There are 5 important steps that will be able to help you with handling finance in a better way and become a pro with personal finance management.

If you feel you’re not able to manage your money, then it’s time to change the way you handle your finances. We share with you 5 essential steps that embark on analyzing your weak areas and shows how to improve in those areas for better personal finance management.

5 steps towards your personal finance management:

Step 1. Get rid of your debts as soon as you can

Debts should be the last thing you would want to have especially when you’re struggling with financial management. As it can ruin every plan of yours, it’s essential to get rid of your debts as soon as possible. Debts can add up in a single day but get rid of them might take years. The following steps would help you to make a debt management plan:

• List down the debts based on the amount and interest rates

• Start making payments towards the ones with higher interest rates and eliminate them soon

• Make minimum payments towards the rest and follow the same hierarchy

• Sell your unused stuff to pay for the debts

• A second job would also help to clear off debts soon

• Never fall into a new debt until you clear off the old ones

Step 2. Create financial goals to save for

Financial goals would keep you focused on your personal finance management and motivate you to save for something that you love or need. Your financial goal can be anything be it getting rid of debts, buying a home, a vacation etc. The next thing you would want to know is how to create financial goals.

How to create financial goals:

• List down the things you would want to do in life and spend your money on. Categorize it as a short-term or long-term goal.

• Prioritize each goal and fix an amount for it along with a timeline

• Start saving money based on the priorities

• For goals like saving for retirement, which is a long-term goal, you can get the benefits from your employer with IRA and 401(k) accounts.

Step 3. Know your weak areas and plan to reach your goals

Once you have your list of financial goals ready, the next step is to plan on how to reach the goals. Your financial plan should help you with saving money, getting out of debts and have a workable budget. It is very important to be steady and regular with the plan. You can see the results only when you follow it regularly.

The planning phase:

• The planning phase begins with analyzing your weak areas. Track down every expense you make to know where your money goes at the end of the month.

• Once you have the expense report ready, make a budget

• Now, look for ways to free up some cash and pay off the debts

• Meanwhile, start contributing towards the essentials such as emergency fund, retirement account etc. irrespective of the state of the financial plan

• Start investing money based on the risk you can afford to double up your savings

Step 4. Create a budget and stick to it

The personal financial management plan would work only when you’ve workable budget and you stick to it no matter what. A budget would help you to spend and save money effectively. You can even use budgeting apps to track your expenses and cut down on unnecessary spending.

Step 5. If in doubt, ask someone

When you’re all done with clearing debts and left with money to invest, then consult a financial advisor. You can even check with someone you know and trust, who deals with the same profession to guide you on investment options and financial management knacks as well. It’s good to ask someone and get guidance on the things that you don’t know or new to it.

Summing up:

No one is born perfect and same is the case with personal finance management. Every small mistake you do would surely teach you something. It is very important to channelize your focus on the way you handle every single dollar. Follow the 5 steps mentioned above and you will be able to see the difference in the way you handle your finances.

Money Saving Tips

7 Simple Ways To Save Money

What are the ways to save money?

Everyone would want to know the answer for the same. Saving money might seem like an arduous task when you’re already tight on your budget. However, one thing that is more difficult than saving money is getting started with it. Sometimes, it becomes the most challenging hunt to discover simple ways to save money and how to utilize your savings towards reaching your financial goals. So, the next thing to do is develop a realistic savings plan to work on your financial goals. We share with you 7 simple yet effective ways to save money and develop your realistic savings plan.

Let us understand how these 7 ways will help you to get started with saving money and have a financially secured future.

7 Simple ways to save money:

#1. Track down your expenses along with your income

The first and foremost step to take towards saving money is to know where your hard-earned money goes every month. Record every expense you make without neglecting even your coffee bills, newspaper cost etc. Every small cost adds up to a big amount and hence you need to account for every penny you spend. Once you’ve recorded your expenses, it’s time to organize it. Categorize it such as groceries, gas, rent etc. and total each amount to know how much you spend on each category. You can even use your credit or debit card statements to get the details.

#2. Create a budget plan and follow it

The next step which is an important step in the savings process is to create a monthly budget. By creating a budget, you will know where to spend and where to be wise. By identifying areas where you can minimize your expenses, you can maximize your savings. Always it is important to implement what you plan and sustain it throughout. Discipline is very important when you are making savings. There will always be a temptation to spend more when you are stressed or happy, it is always better to control your urge to spend more.

#3. List down your financial goals with a timeline to reach them

Once you know to minimize your expenses, it is time to plan your savings. The goals can be a short or a long one. Based on your need and desire you can set the financial goals. Short term goals may include buying your home, car etc., long terms goals include retirement savings, kid’s education etc.

When you plan your retirement savings consider IRA accounts and other options.

#4. Set priorities for your financial goals accordingly

The whole financial planning or ways to save money is not about setting financial goals but prioritizing them as per the need of the hour. Priorities change with time, so prioritize and sustain your long-term goals. If you want your kid to study at Harvard, it is important that you save the money needed for his education. Prioritizing the goals can be very useful to plan your savings plan.

#5. Plan on saving money based on your priorities

A study says at least 10-15 percent of the monthly expenditure should be towards savings. If your needs and aspiration are high that saving this amount is impossible, it is always important to identify the pain areas and start implementing strategies to curb those expenses.

#6. Look for options to save money

For short-term goals, you can look for the following options:

1. Fixed deposits

2. Savings Accounts

3. Short-term investment options.

Long-term goals, you can choose the following options:

1. Stocks

2. Invest and resale of properties

3. IRAs

It is always important to choose the right tool which can help you both in saving money as well as help in maximizing your profits. When your goals are reached, save the additional interest amount which you have got for your investment in another plan so that the habit of savings continues.

#7. Opt for automatic saving option and watch your savings grow

Every bank around the world has many options to save your money. You can directly transfer the money into deposits with the click of a button. It is always important to choose your options wisely and watch your savings grow. The pleasure you get when your savings grow is priceless.

Summing up:

Saving money will take both time and efforts. It depends on how focused you’re towards making it work for you. The first thing you need to do is to get started with saving money by following the 7 ways. Initially, you might not see a huge difference in your savings. So, don’t get disappointed. Instead, notice the change you made from being a ‘person with no savings’ to the ‘one with some money as savings.’

Money Saving Tips

Your Personal Finance Guide: 12 Simple Tips To Save Money

Looking for a way to upgrade your finances?

It’s possible for anyone to give a new turn to their financial journey by making the right move in the right direction. All you need to do is take the right step by following a few simple tips to save money. Sometimes, the hardest thing to do is take the first step towards your financial journey. We share with you 50 simple yet effective tips to save money and churn the wheel of your financial journey. Few tips would just take minutes to implement and few would take weeks. You can choose what you feel can be followed immediately and gradually increase the count. To get started, go through the list and follow the 12tips to save money. Create your own personal finance guide and add these12 tips to get started. Although, initially the difference would be small but with time you will be able to see a huge change in your financial journey. Remember perseverance is the key to success.

Let us understand the 12tips to save money and how it can help you in your overall financial journey.

12 simple tips to save money:

1. The shopping rule: make a list before you shop

Making a list of items to buy before you enter a supermarket will help in preventing impulsive buying. It will also help you in keeping track of things you buy and also help to look for alternatives.

2. Heard about the 30-day rule?

Always buy an item you desire after 30 days. When you do that, you will either not buy the item or the desire to buy that item would have subsided. This will help you in saving a lot of money and savings.

3. Sell that unwanted stuff.

Always sell the items which you don’t use it for more than a few months. It will help you by providing additional cash either to spend or save.

4. Switch to a different bank and earn more interest.

You don’t have to live with high interests for your loans when you make regular payments. There are banks which help you in transferring your existing loans with lesser interests. This will help you in saving valuable money lost in high interests.

5. Enjoy the benefits of all customer reward programs

Only buy what you can use. When you feel something is really important to buy look for various customer reward programs which provide good benefits for the items you buy. These programs will help you in making a buying plan for the future.

6. Enjoy a TV-free life.

Television has become essential in everybody’s life. By not watching TV you are not only saving your electricity bill but will also think of other ways of making money such as side business and other investment plans.

7. Become a gift maker.

Everybody loves to feel special. When you make an effort to create useful gifts for your friends, it will be appreciated and you will also save money on buying unnecessary gifts.

8. Host a “house party”.

Partying reduces your stress. Party should never become a reason for your stress. The amount you spend in a party can take a toll both on your food budget as well as on the savings. Instead, host a house party and prepare all the things if possible, this will help you saving money for useful expenditures

9. Clothes stitched can be handy.

This is one of the useful tips to save money. Don’t throw your pant just for a small hole, or a shirt for a lost button; instead, stitch the button and patch the hole so that you reuse it during your crunchy times.

10. No big budget entertainments.

Making entertainment plans for the kids is always important. But that plan should not take a chunk of your life savings. Find creative to entertain the kids, use items which will kindle their creativity and not their pockets.

11. Game what you can master.

Being video game savvy is good. Only buy games which you can master and which has a high resale value. Always buy another game when the first game is completely conquered.

12. Quench your thirst.

Drinking water is always good for health. But drinking a glass of water before every meal will not only help you to stay full for a longer period of time but will also help in consuming less food. This will help you in saving a precious amount of money in your food budget and also in maximizing your life savings.

Summing up:

The above tips will help you in saving precious money which can be used on your lifetime savings. This money saved can be used for making investments which will help in increasing your standard of living.

Debt Management

Ways to Get Out of Debts

Panic-stricken faces, reluctance to spend even on essential commodities, high stress, and pressure levels, getting annoyed even at the slightest chance are not just signs of depression but also of a person in deep debts. Well, the way out of it very simple pay them all.

The happiness of a person paying the last installment of his loan is equivalent to that of a person who has become a father. You feel your shoulders light and mind stress-free. Imagine what will be your state of mind when you have to get into another loan to manage an urgent need? This will be a nightmare and depressing experience. So if I tell you that, there is a way to get out of debts and continue to be the same for the rest of your life, won’t you be related?

Here are five ways to get out of debts

1. Plan your savings

I start with the most sort after and preferred solution to get out of debts, savings plans. Well, this is the easiest way to get out of debts. Using your money from savings to spend on life events and emergencies instead of taking a chunk from your monthly paycheque. There are a lot of short term and long term investment plans available for you to scrutinize and embark on. Once you decide on the plan, decide on the savings and then proceed to save it on a monthly basis.

Discipline is very important when you start your savings plan, no matter what the amount allocated for the savings should not be used for any other purposes. The amount saved should be used only for your goal when you can save from those savings to start the cycle again to earn better monetary benefits.

2. Record your mistakes

Nobody likes to time travel to visit the mistakes made in life. But I am not going to ask you to time travel but create a documentary about various financial mistakes you have made or make an entry into your diary whenever you make a mistake. This will help you in two ways:

1. It will protect you from committing the same mistake twice.

2. It can also be used to bail you out of precarious situations simply to help you in finding a way to get out of debt troubles.

3. Secondary income

The best way to increase your cash flow and to save more money is to create a source of secondary income. Choose your secondary income source based on your passion. For example, if you are passionate about writing, then you can choose content development, article writing as a secondary profession. Writing can be done from home and it will also quench your passion. It will also help you as a stress buster and when money starts to come in from the secondary income you can breathe a lot easier than you were before.

When you choose a secondary income source, make sure it is not stressful and laborious. You already have your primary job to get stressed and overwork. So take a lot of care when you choose your secondary income source.

4. Invest your way to the top

A business needs assets to increase its valuation similarly a person needs investments to increase his standard of living. Right investment at the right time in the right place will yield you right results. The easiest way out of debts is to climb the ladder of investments. Plan your investment mix correctly. Investments to aid you during your retirements should be the first and foremost investment you make.

DCA provides a lot of investments, 529 plan which is tax-free can also be chosen to make investments. These may come to your aid when you need them to.

5. Battle against boredom

A study says people tend to spend more when you are bored. The best way to put it is

“An ideal mind is a devil’s workshop”

It is always better to keep yourself engaged in some activities. When can you be active by paying the least amount of fees why not? You tend to splurge money when you a bored and you start to purchase something to kill time. For example, you may decide to purchase Xbox to kill time until your girl returns from work. Instead, you can choose activities like jogging, badminton which are comparatively cheap to kill your time. You can enjoy the twin benefits of fitness and stress relief.

Summing up:

To live with or without a debt is in your hands. It is always better to live a life without any financial burden. This is life without a financial burden is not impossible but is possible with little planning and wise decisions. Decisions for a lifetime after all we are not going to be working all our lives when we decide to hang our boots make sure you hang it with pride and without any regrets.


Why It Is Important To Know Your Credit Score?

In today’s busy world, where everything is available online- be it shopping, booking a movie, looking for property etc. The payment is easily made by just swiping your credit card. But there’s something which most of us neglect, to know your credit score.

So, what’s the big deal and how do things change by knowing the credit score?

This is what you might be thinking. However, knowing your credit score can benefit you in various ways. Swiping your card is the easiest thing to do. But every time you swipe your card, your credit score changes. Every change in your credit score can significantly change your decisions. Before you know the benefits of a good credit score, you must know what credit score is and how is it calculated.

What is a credit score and how is it calculated?

A credit score is a statistical number that defines your creditworthiness. A credit score is the distilled version of your credit report. It is a 3 digit number which is calculated using complex formulas. The credit score ranges from 300 to 850. A high score represents that the person is financially trustworthy.

The factors involved in calculating the credit score are:

• Your payment history

• The length of your credit history

• The number of accounts you have

• The types of accounts you have

• Your used credit vs your available credit

In short, your credit score not only shows how well you manage your debts but opens up to a wide range of benefits.

So, let’s understand why it is important to know your credit score.

4 Reasons to know your credit score:

1. Your credit score gives the clear report of personal financial health

Do you know your credit score?

You can get the clear report of your overall personal financial health just by analyzing your credit score. If your credit score is:

• Low credit score implies: That you have more debts which you can’t comfortable handle. Also, it implies having too many credit cards at once.

• High credit score implies: You have handled your debts well and you clear debts on time.

Every change in your credit score gives you the idea of your changing financial situation. So, it’s essential to do credit monitoring once every month to keep a check on your personal financial health.

Check your credit score now to see know the status of your personal financial health. You can know your credit score online through multiple sources.

2. Your credit score helps you to protect yourself from frauds

You can check your financial situation by analyzing your credit history and credit report. Your credit score can show if you’re financially vulnerable from the way you handle your finances. Every late payment you make or having lots of credit, all this will be visible in your low credit score. If you’re among the people who never miss out any bill, do on-time payment, have zero debt and a small handful of credit cards then, your credit score will automatically be high. Additionally, the credit score helps you to protect yourself from frauds.

How will you know if your credit card is being misused by someone else?

In this tech-savvy era, anyone can easily misuse your credit card just by knowing your credit card number and other particulars. Credit card frauds both online and offline have become a common threat these days. So, it’s very important to be cautious when it comes to managing your credit card.

Fraudsters can buy new credit cards on your name if they know your SSN. Because of such events, your credit score can take a slide down. So, it is very essential to know your credit score and monitor every small change that happens. If you feel there’s some change in your credit score which you feel suspicious then check with your credit card provider immediately.

3. Your credit score will fetch you a discount for life

Having a good credit score can easily get money from credits or bank at good interest rates. Not only that you can enjoy benefits such as a loan with low interest rates, get approved for a mortgage loan, extra competitive for a new job or rental property etc.

4. Your credit score shows how you can mold your finances to a better shape

Your credit score can point out mistakes and act like a coach by showing a way for better financial management. Act according to the way your credit score recommends to mold your financial future to a better shape.

Summing up:

Hope you would have understood the importance of knowing your credit score. Start evaluating how you can avail of the benefits of your credit score. Also, if you feel your credit score is low then look for ways to improve it.


What Would Happen If I Stop Paying My Credit Card Bill?

Sometimes it’s tempting to skip a credit card payment; you may be going through a tough month and need to skip just one payment. There are other times, however, when your finances are hit by a large unplanned expense, such as a hospital stay, or your car breaks down etc and things get really tight.

Credit Card Bill

You might have wondered what would happen if you decide to put your credit card payment on hold for a while or decide to stop paying them all together. Let’s investigate this further.

Skipping one payment

When you miss just one credit card payment, your credit card company will usually charge a late fee, in addition to interest charged on the unpaid balance. Some companies even raise your interest rate as soon as you miss a payment. As a result, your next payment will include these fees plus your monthly minimum required payment. This could lead to a snowball effect so be careful and try to make your minimum repayments where possible.

30-60 days Late

After 30 days, some credit card companies offer a short grace period before they report your account as delinquent to a credit reporting agency. However, generally after 60 days, you can expect your credit card company to report your account as past due and this would negatively impact your credit score.

During this time, your credit card company may increase your interest rates to the penalty interest rate covered in the fine print in the contract you signed when applying for the credit card. This can be quite a shock to some people, as your interest rate quickly increases from a low rate to one that’s 29 percent or even higher. It depends on the card—you can find the details on your credit card statement.

After you are 90 days Late: Lowered credit limit or closed account

The longer you go without paying, the more drastic the consequences becomes. Late fees add up over time and your credit score will continue to suffer the more behind you are on your account. Eventually, your creditor may choose to lower your credit limit or even close the account, which increases your utilisation ratio, leading to an even lower credit score.

According to Credit Cards NZ, a New Zealand credit card comparison website, your credit utilisation ratio is defined as the amount of total debt you owe divided by your total available credit. The lower your credit utilisation ratio the better your credit score. For example, if you have a credit card with a $5,000 credit limit, and you owe $1,000 on your card, then your credit utilisation ratio is just 1,000/5,000 which equals 0.2. However, if you owe $5,000 and your credit limit is $5,000 then your credit utilisation ratio would be $5,000/$5,000 which is equal to 1.

At this point, the snowball only continues to grow, but it can get even worse. Some credit card companies choose to right off your debt as a bad business expense while some creditors would choose to give your debt to a collection agency.

Collection agencies can be quite aggressive when they come after you; you may receive calls at work and at home all hours of the day, even on your cell phone. They may even send you emails trying to get you to pay. If you ignore the collection agency, then they may take legal actions to force you to pay your debt.

Face debt head-on

One of the best ways to tackle debt is to face it head-on. Here are some things you can do to work with your credit card company by making a proactive steps towards paying off your debt.

Reach out to the credit company before you miss a payment. Tell them you may miss a payment, explain your circumstances and ask what you can do to avoid having the late payment on your credit report. Also ask them if there’s a way you can avoid paying the late and penalties if you end up missing a payment.

You may find your credit card company will try to work with you if you’re proactive and contact them right way. They may even have a program that helps when you miss a payment. Some credit card companies offer a “skip-a-payment” plan, where you skip one payment in a specified amount of time. Or they may offer a program where you pay only the interest due that month or a specified amount of time.

It’s better to reach out to the credit card company before missing a payment—they may just be willing to work with you to find a solution and help you avoid any bad marks on your credit report, while also avoiding high fees and penalties.

If you fail to reach out to your credit card company early, they will begin to contact you within 30 days of a non-payment. At this point, your credit card company may still be willing to work with you, but they won’t be as friendly and helpful as if you had been proactive in the beginning—before missing a payment. Even so, they’ll probably still offer to help you with the programs mentioned in earlier.

When you hit the 60-90 day mark of non-payment, it might be time to reach out to a non-profit credit counselling agency. They’ll help you develop solutions to manage your debt—pay it off—and stay out of debt.

As you can see, skipping credit card payments can be detrimental to your credit score, your finances and your peace of mind. If you find yourself in a hard situation and you’re not able to make a payment, then reach out to your credit card company right away. They may be able to help you get back on track with payment options and programs they have for people who are going through a tough time.

Debt Management

Things You Should Know About Debt Management

Have you ever wondered how you get into debts?

Debt is something which, none of us would want to entertain in our lives. But sooner or later, we do get into debts and sometimes it takes years to clear it off. We all think that we have control over our money, but the fact is our mind is manipulated every moment towards spending money. Before you even realize it, you would have spent it on something unwanted. And the debts get added. If you follow a proper debt management plan, you will not only be able to clear your debts plus you will know to avoid getting into debts.

What is debt management?

First of all, you need to know what debt management is and how it can help you. List down the debts based on the interest rates. Start clearing off the ones with higher interest rates. If you find it difficult to clear off debts with the existing financial situation then you can look for debt management plans. There are various companies that offer debt management plans and you can choose based on your needs. The first essential thing to do is not falling into further new debts until you clear all the existing debts.

There are quite a few things that you need to know before you can plan on debt management.

The marketing strategy:

A research says that the turnover of media advertising industry was 207 billion U.S dollars in 2017, which is the result of you and other customers who fall as prey of the marketing strategy.

People in the fields of marketing, sales or advertising know it better to make you spend your money on the things which you might not need even. Call it the marketing strategy or your hopping mind which gets tempted to buy things – everything adds up to debts and tons of debts!

Installments add up to become debts!

You do all the research for a home, and finally found your dream home- a place of your choice with all the things as you wished, but wait the cost of it is beyond your affordable limit. The cloud of disappointment surrounds you, and then a friendly salesperson comes and shows the path. He explains how the huge amount can be broken into small monthly installments to be paid in a few years and it won’t pinch your budget as well. You might just notice the short-cut that leads to your dream home and not the debt that is going to be with you till you retire or maybe longer. Meanwhile, you need to look for a way to save for retirement as well. A house or property out of your affordable limit will leave you with debts for a lifetime and make it difficult to plan your savings.

By knowing the debt management technique, you will be able to organize your finances well. You can avoid such scenarios by fixing a workable budget before you look for a house. This will also help you to evaluate your debts, clear it off and how you can progress towards a savings plan.

The comparison trap!

Why can’t I go for nice cars, big home etc. which other people have?

I can easily get those by paying small monthly installments over a period of months and years. But, what about savings? Others would have saved for it and bought, you might not know the details.

Don’t fall into the trap of comparing with others and end up buying something which you might regret for years. Paying 4 to 5 small installments every month can seem like a burden in the long run. Especially, when there is a financial emergency, you are all stuck in debts and left with no money.

The savings strategy:

If you still want to buy things out of your affordable limit, then start saving for it. There are lots of ways in which you can get started with savings:

• Start with saving in banks that offer better interest rates.

• Look for ways to invest your money.

Create a short-term or long-term financial goal:

A short-term goal can be a down payment for a car. A long-term goal can be a down payment for your dream home. This will surely reduce your burden of debts. Once you have saved a good amount, the installments may be paid off in a short span. You can even start saving once you clear your monthly installments.

Summing up:

Getting into debts is very easy but getting out of it will take huge efforts and time. You need to manage your finance wisely or else you will end up in trouble. Through debt management, you will be able to learn to balance between your debts and savings.


Ways To Update And Improve Your Sexual Harassment Policy In 2018

With the recent focus on sexual harassment, your company may wish to revisit your sexual harassment policy. An effective policy will address behavior expectations and begin to transform the culture and environment in your business. Consider adding the following information to your existing policy as you protect your employees, prevent sexual harassment and create a healthy and safe work culture and environment.

Sexual Harassment

Adjust the Culture

To secure a harassment-free workplace, change your company’s culture. You can hire and promote more women, provide equal pay for both genders and embrace diversity. Ideally, the culture will respect and value men and women and treat both genders as equal. In this environment, your employees look out for each other, treat each other with respect and strive to create a workplace that’s welcoming, safe and kind to everyone.

Encourage Civility

While you want your employees to avoid sexual harassment, you should also encourage them to act in a civil manner to one another. Ask your employees to brainstorm ways they can show respect and kindness to their co-workers. Examples include offering praise, not interrupting and sharing the workload. Then provide scripts, videos and other resources that teach your employees how to deal constructively with rude behavior, listen without being dismissive, give credit where it’s due and remain civil always.

Empower Bystanders

Your harassment policy will include guidelines for reporting incidents. It should go a step further and equip bystanders to recognize and address wrong behavior.

Bystanders don’t have to engage a harasser in the moment and escalate the situation. However, after the situation diffuses, the bystander can talk openly with co-workers and ask if others saw the questionable behavior.

In the meantime, bystanders can suggest something like, “Hey, that joke is not funny.” They can also cause a distraction like making a loud noise or asking the victim for help.

Bystander intervention may also include asking the victim or target of harassment if they thought the interaction was silly, consensual or offensive. At that point, the bystander may wish to accompany the victim to the human resources department and enter a violation report, a step that demonstrates solidarity.

Simplify Reporting

Anyone who experiences sexual harassment must know who to tell, trust that they will not face retaliation and feel confident that the issue will be handled promptly and professionally. Your reporting system will meet these needs. Also, consider implementing EEOC suggestions that include offering rewards to departments with high reporting counts and giving dozens of employees the responsibility to receive harassment reports. These changes encourage reporting and improve the atmosphere in your company.

Hold Frequent and Effective Trainings

Lectures on the dangers of sexual harassment no longer work. Incorporate interactive presentations, role-playing activities and trainings geared to your specific workforce and challenges. Everyone in the company, including management, should attend the frequent trainings as you strive to educate your employee, change ongoing bad habits and reform the culture.

Review the Employee Handbook

In addition to addressing the culture, revisit your company’s sexual harassment policy. It must define sexual harassment and should include ways employees can recognize harassment and the steps they should take to report violations. Additionally, make updates such as:

  1. Include all genders and sexual orientations.
  2. Add gender-neutral language that addresses harassment by both men and women and removes gender stereotypes.
  3. Include disciplinary guidelines.

Then require all your employees to read the handbook and sign a form that verifies they have read it. Post the policy on your website and app, too.

Your business must take sexual harassment seriously, especially this year. Take these steps as you address this challenge, update and improve your sexual harassment policy, and create a safe, healthy and civil workplace.