Archive - January, 2012

Monthly Budget Reminder – February 2012

It is the last day of the month and you know what that means …

It is time to prepare your budget for FEBRUARY!

Here are some great things to consider for this month:

  • If you are expecting to receive a tax refund, be sure to use the Mini-Budget to plan that money also!
  • Be sure to review your Known, Upcoming Non-Monthly Expenses to ensure you are not going to be caught off-guard by a surprise expense (like vacation, property taxes, or a car repair)
  • Review January’s budget to see if you accomplished everything you planned

Get fired up!

Read recent posts

Biblical Financial Lessons – Proverbs 13:22

This is a series that appears on a weekly basis here at JosephSangl.com – “Biblical Financial Lessons”

I believe that the Bible is the best money book ever written, and I really want to take some time each week to share the money lessons I have learned from the Word.

Proverbs 13:22  A good man leaves an inheritance for his children’s children, but a sinner’s wealth is stored up for the righteous.

There are two distinct parts to this verse.  Let’s focus on each part separately.

“A good man leaves an inheritance for his children’s children”

This is a very challenging statement.  It forces us to understand that we are not just supposed to look at the “here & now”, but also to the future.  Here are some key learnings I take from this:

  • It’s not all about me
  • I’m supposed to bless my children and my grandchildren
  • The way I live my life will affect my descendents
  • Blessings are generational

“but a sinner’s wealth is stored up for the righteous”

What an interesting statement to follow the first portion of the verse with!  This part is making an observation that God will bless the righteous and that those who ignore Him and His commands will have their wealth transferred to those who will pursue Him.

Question: If you keep managing money the way you are currently managing it, will you leave an inheritance for your children’s children?

Read the series

Read recent posts on JosephSangl.com

Maximize Your 401(k) – Get The Full Match

If you have a retirement plan available to you at your workplace:

  • 401(k)
  • 403(b)
  • RRSP
  • TFSA
  • SIMPLE IRA
  • 457
  • TSP

AND your company provides matching funds – such as a “dollar-for-dollar up to 3-percent of pay” or “50 cents on the dollar up to 6-percent of pay” then

I BEG YOU TO DO THIS ONE THING …

Check with your employer to ensure you obtaining the absolute maximum amount of the company match.

It is FREE MONEY, and it is part of your compensation.

Go to Human Resources and ensure you are contributing enough to at least obtain the full company match!

QUESTION:  Would you share with me about your company match and whether you are receiving the full company match?

Read recent posts

Biblical Financial Lessons – Proverbs 13:11

This is a series that appears on a weekly basis here at JosephSangl.com – “Biblical Financial Lessons”

I believe that the Bible is the best money book ever written, and I really want to take some time each week to share the money lessons I have learned from the Word.

Proverbs 13:11  Dishonest money dwindles away, but he who gathers money little by little makes it grow.

The part of this verse that speaks strongest to me is “he who gathers money little by little makes it grow.”  For some reason when I was broke, I felt like the only way to win with money and gain margin was to save money in HUGE CHUNKS.  Since that was impossible, it almost felt pointless to even get started.

BUT when I started saving money a little at a time, I STOPPED being broke and have been able to live to financial margin.

Questions:

  1. Do you BELIEVE that you can save money little by little?
  2. How much are you saving from each paycheck?
  3. How much (or how much more) could you start saving from each paycheck?

What is ONE THING you could do today that would make a difference tomorrow?

Read the series

Read recent posts on JosephSangl.com

Friday Savings Tip – Use Promo Codes

This is part of a regular series of Savings Tips shared at JosephSangl.com.

Anyone who shops on-line knows that most retailers offer promo codes.  The key is finding them!

Of course, you could use Google to search for them, but that can land you in the endless circle of coupon and promo code sites that provide zero assistance.

The best promo code site I have ever found is RetailMeNot.com

Over the past three years, I estimate that RetailMeNot.com has saved me over $2,000 in hotel, printing, and merchandise purchases.  If you shop on-line, I highly recommend using this great site to SAVE MONEY – one of my favorite things to do!

Read recent posts

Disclosure.

Great Personal Finance Website – MyMoneyBlog.com

I am going to be sharing my favorite personal finance websites through this new monthly series here at the wildly popular JosephSangl.com.

January’s Featured Website – MyMoneyBlog.com

Here are the reasons I love his site:

  • He is smart.  Crazy smart!
  • He has focused on personal finances for YEARS and his content has never “dulled out”
  • Relevant content to those interested in maximizing their money
  • He has established clear and concise goals for his Emergency Fund, Home Pay-Off, and Investments (and he is achieving them …)

This is one of the few blogs on my daily reader.  It would benefit you to do the same!

Read recent posts

 

Featured Tool Of The Month: Mini-Budget

It is so important to PLAN the spending of each and every dollar earned.  Planning is THE REASON why my family started winning with money.

TOOL OF THE MONTH: MINI-BUDGET

The Mini-Budget was created for two specific uses:

  1. Planning the use of non-normal or unusual found money – such as tax refunds, bonuses, inheritance money, or money received by selling something
  2. Planning a major expenditure – such as a kitchen refurbishment project, daughter’s wedding, or finishing the basement

This budget tool is unique because it has THREE different budget forms.  This is because I have found that it is essential to think through the alternative ways to spend the money.  The first way that comes to mind is usually the most immediate or urgent use, BUT it is not always the best or most impactful use.

Let’s look at an example.  Suppose you were receiving a $2,500 tax refund. Your first thought was to put all of the money toward an existing credit card balance.

This, of course, is a decent way to spend the money.  But is just one way.  There are several ways this money could be utilized, and that is why there are THREE budgets placed next to each other in this tool.

What if this money were being planned by a person who had ZERO SAVINGS?  Another way to spend the money would be to put all of the money toward their Emergency Fund.

Another way would be to place some money in savings, some in FUN, and some toward the credit card balance.

Which way is the best way?  I don’t know which would be right for this person, but I am confident that the first scenario would not be the best!  The challenge of spending the money three different ways on paper before it is spent for real can really help you maximize your money.

QUESTION: How are YOU going to use this tool?

Read recent posts

Biblical Financial Lessons – Proverbs 21:5

Welcome to a new series that will be appearing on a weekly basis here at JosephSangl.com – “Biblical Financial Lessons”.

I believe that the Bible is the best money book ever written, and I really want to take some time each week to share the money lessons I have learned from the Word.

Proverbs 21:5  The plans of the diligent lead to profit, as surely as haste leads to poverty.

This verse is the guiding principle of every financial decision I make.

There are two potential outcomes that exist in this verse:

  • Profit
  • Poverty

I may not know anything about you, but I do know this – you would choose profit over poverty every single time.  We all want our lives to be profitable.  This verse provides the map for a profitable life.

Look at the verse again. It shares two key principles that will help each of us have profit.

It states that “the PLANS of the DILIGENT” leads to profit.  We must have a plan.

Let me ask you a question – “Do YOU have a plan?  For your life?  For your marriage?  For your MONEY?

Having a plan is not enough, however.  We must be diligent in following the plan!  Diligence means that we are steadfast, consistent, persistent, disciplined, focused, and willing to persevere in spite of difficult circumstances.

Let’s break this down into practical terms and circumstances.  Planning with diligence means that we …

  • Have a budget and actually follow it
  • Have a life plan and pursue it daily
  • Life purposefully instead of lazily
  • Refuse to listen to the critics and continue to relentless pursue our dream

Questions:

  1. Do you have a long-term financial plan?
  2. Do you have a monthly budget?
  3. Do you follow your monthly budget?
  4. Is your life leading to profit or poverty?

What is ONE THING you could do today that would make a difference tomorrow?

Read the series

Read recent posts on JosephSangl.com

U.S. National Debt Update

The US National Debt has increased by $505,581,392,352 since our last update in September 2011.  Another quarter and we have dropped another $500 billion in the hole.

National Debt as of 1/13/2012

$15,227,955,687,201

Our nation’s leaders will soon be entering into the same conversation that they had just a few short months ago – because we are about to hit the debt limit AGAIN!

As was known by EVERYONE at the time we increased the debt limit, issuing the equivalent of another credit card to pay the bills of another credit card did not work.

My question is this:  At what point in time will this type of spending stop?

Read recent posts

Improving 0% Interest Balance Transfer Credit Card Offers

As regular readers of JosephSangl.com know, I am passionate about connecting people to ways to lower the interest rate on existing credit card debt.  This is why I was so excited to see that credit card providers have begun offering 0% Interest Balance Transfer offers with no transfer fees!

We have updated the on-line offers that we have found HERE (http://www.josephsangl.com/2011/07/19/0-percent-balance-transfer-credit-card/).

If you have existing credit card debt that you are paying a ton of interest on, this is a great way to reduce that interest to ZERO!

Read recent posts

Win With Your Money In 2012 – 5

Welcome to the latest series here at JosephSangl.com – “Win With your Money In 2012″

It is our passion to help people accomplish far more than they ever thought possible with their personal finances.

If you apply what is taught during this series, you WILL be able to win with your money in 2012.  Happy New Year!

Part 5 Make Your Goals AUTOMATIC

Despite our best efforts, we can fail to achieve the goals that we have established.  One key way that we can ensure that our financial goal is achieved is to make each one AUTOMATIC.

  • Want to give away $4,000 this year to your church?  Set up on-line giving to make it automatic!  $333.33 each month will ensure the goal is achieved.
  • Saving $2,000 for your emergency fund in 2012?  Establish an automated transfer of $166.66 each month from your regular bank account into a savings account and the goal will be accomplished in December!
  • Want to max out your Roth IRA this year?  Set up an automated transfer of $416.66 each month into your Roth IRA and you will achieve $5,000 by year’s end (or save $500/month if you are over age 50 and are catching up with $6,000/year)!
  • Want to pay cash for a $1,500 vacation in July?  Set up an automated savings account to save $250/month and you will be able to do so!

Trust me – it is usually NOT EASY to force yourself to set up these giving, saving, and investing goals to be automatic because:

  1. We KNOW that once it is set up to happen automatically – it IS going to happen, and
  2. We KNOW that it is going to make the monthly budget tighter

But it is so worth it!  Yes, it will be tough for the first few months, but I have found that our family adjusts within a couple of months.  After that, we don’t even notice anymore until …

  • vacation time rolls around and the money is there to pay cash!
  • you receive your giving statement and find out just how much you were able to give away!
  • you recognize that you are actually moving toward your retirement savings goals!

THAT is when you will say, “I’m truly winning with my money in 2012!”  GET FIRED UP!

Read Entire Series (Available after 1/9/2012)

Read recent posts

Win With Your Money In 2012 – 4

Welcome to the latest series here at JosephSangl.com – “Win With your Money In 2012″

It is our passion to help people accomplish far more than they ever thought possible with their personal finances.

If you apply what is taught during this series, you WILL be able to win with your money in 2012.  Happy New Year!

Part 4 Identify Savings Opportunities

Saved money is better than a pay raise!  Think about it, you will bring home after taxes about $0.70 for every $1.00 that you earn.  So if you received a $1,000 pay raise, you really get to bring home about $700.

If you save $1.00, however, you actually have an entire extra $1.00 to spend!  If you save $1,000, you actually have an extra $1,000 because it is take-home money that has already been taxed!

How could YOU save $1,000 in 2012?  Well, you could start by watching our FREE webinar (on-demand) HERE.

Here is a short list of other key areas where you can save TONS of money in 2012:

  • Home and Auto Insurance  The average person who has not gotten new quotes in the last two years will save between $500 and $700 per year!  I really like THIS WEBSITE for obtaining on-line quotes.
  • o% Balance Transfer Credit Cards  Transfer that credit card balance that has high interest rates and surf the balance to a 0-percent balance transfer credit card and have all of your payment be applied to principal.  Check out the ON-LINE OFFERS.
  • Grocery Coupons  Save between 20 and 30-percent on your grocery purchases by timing the use of coupons with the best sales.  THESE WEBSITES are great and FREE providers of coupon lists for your favorite grocery stores.

What are some ways that YOU are planning to save money in 2012?

Read Entire Series (Available after 1/9/2012)

Read recent posts

Win With Your Money In 2012 – 3

Welcome to the latest series here at JosephSangl.com – “Win With your Money In 2012″

It is our passion to help people accomplish far more than they ever thought possible with their personal finances.

If you apply what is taught during this series, you WILL be able to win with your money in 2012.  Happy New Year!

Part 3 Identify Additional Earnings Opportunities

Now that you have written down your 2012 Financial Goals and have defined specific actions that you will take to achieve each one, let’s focus on the top line for a moment – your income.

Where will you earn money? Will all of it come from your job or will you have multiple streams of income?

You might be amazed at the different ways YOU could earn income in 2012!  Here are some more common ways that I see people earn additional income that can sort of get lost during the year.

  • Tax Refund
  • Buy and Sell through Ebay, Amazon, live auctions, or through consignment
  • A small business
  • Overtime
  • Second job
  • Achieve a new certification level or additional education that results in a pay raise
  • Ask for a pay raise

What are some ways that you could produce more revenue this year – revenue that could help you fund your 2012 Financial Goals?

Read Entire Series (Available after 1/9/2012)

Read recent posts

Win With Your Money In 2012 – 2

Welcome to the latest series here at JosephSangl.com – “Win With your Money In 2012″

It is our passion to help people accomplish far more than they ever thought possible with their personal finances.

If you apply what is taught during this series, you WILL be able to win with your money in 2012.  Happy New Year!

Part 2  Establish A Plan To Reach Your Written Financial Goals

In Part 1, you were encouraged to write down your 2012 Financial Goals.  If you have not written down your goals, the rest of this series will not be very helpful to you!

Once you have established your written 2012 Financial Goals, it is time to establish a plan to reach each one of them.

For example, let’s say a “Savings Goal” of “Have $2,000 in my emergency fund by the end of 2012.” has been written down.  There are two ways we can address this goal:

  1. Develop a plan to achieve the goal
  2. Hope and pray we achieve the goal

Having hope and praying for the goal can be very helpful, but without a plan, it is much less likely to happen!

One way to achieve the goal would be to “Save $166/month into my emergency fund.”  That would total up to $2,000 by the end of 2012.

Another way to accomplish this goal would be to “Put $2,000 of my tax refund into an emergency fund.”

As these goals are developed, prepare a written spending plan (budget) for the year to help you clearly understand reality.

I recommend that you produce an ANNUAL PLAN and a MONTH-BY-MONTH ANNUAL PLAN that shows how each goal will be funded.  You can use our BRAND NEW & FREE BUDGET TOOLS to prepare your plan!

TOOL: Annual Budget – Month By Month and TOOL: Annual Budget

Take the necessary time TODAY to develop a plan to achieve each financial goal you have established for 2012.

Read Entire Series (Available after 1/9/2012)

Read recent posts

Win With Your Money In 2012 – 1

Welcome to the latest series here at JosephSangl.com – “Win With your Money In 2012″

It is our passion to help people accomplish far more than they ever thought possible with their personal finances.

If you apply what is taught during this series, you WILL be able to win with your money in 2012.  Happy New Year!

Part 1  Establish Written Financial Goals

Take some time TODAY to write down your financial goals for this year.  Seriously, have YOU ever written down your financial goals?  I know that I had NEVER written my financial goals down before 2002 – when I had my IHHE Moment (I Have Had Enough Moment).  Since that time, I have had my goals written down.  Guess what?  I had made positive progress ever since!

I believe the same will happen for you.  There is something incredibly powerful about writing down financial goals.  It requires you to think and plan about the year ahead.  It will also help you clearly understand that it will take work and intentional effort to achieve each goal.

There are several types of financial goals for you to think about establishing:

  • Earnings Goals
    • How much do you want to earn this year?
    • Where will you earn the money?
  • Giving Goals
    • How much money do you want to give away this year?
    • To what organizations and individuals will you give this money?
  • Savings Goals
    • How much money do you want to have in your Emergency Fund by the end of 2012?
    • How much money do you need to save for Known Upcoming Non-Monthly Expenses?
    • How much money do you want to have saved for your Dreams?
  • Investing Goals
    • How much money do you want to invest in 2012?
    • Where and how will this money be invested?
  • Debt Elimination Goals
    • How much debt do you want to eliminate in 2012?
    • Which debts will you focus on?

I CHALLENGE YOU to write down your goals TODAY!

To help make this even easier for you, we are pleased to offer our “My 2012 Financial Goals” worksheet to you FREE – DOWNLOAD IT HERE ==> My Yearly Financial Goals.

Would you mind sharing any of your goals with us in the comments?

Read Entire Series (Available after 1/9/2012)

Read recent posts

Page 1 of 212»