Monthly Archives: February 2016

Small Changes That Bring Big Budget Savings

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You don’t have to make a gigantic lifestyle change to see improvements in your budget, not at all.  However, many Canadians across British Columbia believe it takes this just to see slight improvements. While you can make some extra income selling items you don’t use any longer, or taking on an extra job, there are definitely more reliable ways to make positive gains to a budget.  Of course, Canadians will find it takes a bit of creativity to achieve big gains, but with effort and even the smallest of changes, there isn’t anyone who won’t begin to notice growing savings!

These tips are going to change the way Canadians look at their financial situation.  If they follow through with them, they can acquire long-term financial security without any doubt.  The truth is, some of these tips and strategies have been lying right up under Canadians noses, and don’t take any extra effort to take advantage of!

Take These Adjustments To Spending To Meet Long-Term Savings

Budget Frugality

It’s time you really start taking advantage of all of those loyalty programs!

Loyalty programs are growing by leaps and bounds, and for good reason.  Today there are more than 3 billion customers across the region actively participating in these memberships.  You can save a fortune on so many things.  Just imagine discounts on flights, meals, clothing, vacations and so much more!

Surveys can pay off in the long-run–especially when you are attempting to increase income!

Surveys might appear to be time consuming, but they pay off in the long-term.  $5.00 turns into $50.00 fairly easily.  Just pay attention to your receipts and the survey links at the bottom of them.  Just by visiting a website and inputting some information can get you a deep discount.  Some can get free meals at their favorite dining establishment.  You have nothing to lose with these and they are well worth the time investment.

Start making your own coffee to save time and money!

Stop going to Starbucks 3 times a week and start making your own coffee.  You’ll find you can save around $75.00 a month just by cutting back on a luxury like this.  And ask yourself whether or not the cost for Starbucks is even worth it?  Nine times out of ten your own coffee is far better than that brand.  This is definitely a serious savings!

Don’t avoid buying generic, it can save money and be just as good as name brand!

Generic products get a bad rap.  If you pay attention to labels, some generic products are well worth choosing over high priced name brands.  You can save a fortune at the grocery store doing just this.  For example, trash bags that are generic are normally just as good.  If you need condiments such as mustard and ketchup, you’re not going to find much of a difference! More Canadians should take advantage of these savings.

 

7 Simple Steps To Achieve Financial Security Before 30

Saving before 30

Everyone desires to be financially secure, especially when planning for that retirement.  However, for young Canadians, this is often the last thing they are thinking about–at least before they turn 30! This mind-set really needs to change.  Every Canadian needs to work towards financial security for their future. This alone alleviates a great deal of the anxiety and stress that comes with being an adult.  It’s a fact that financial insecurity leads to a great deal of health problems for many, but if you manage your money wisely and plan, you’ll live happier and longer!

If you’re worried you’ll have to sacrifice your short-term goals to realize your long-term ones, you’re wrong. You don’t have to do so. The following tips and advice being shared with you now will guarantee you can achieve financial security without having to really deprive yourself of anything.  It’s all about financial budgeting and being accountable of your own spending habits.

The following 7 tips will point young Canadians in the right direction if their goal is to have sound, dependable financial security before the age of 30. Remember, you don’t have to sacrifice entertainment and other extracurricular activities if you budget right!

The Top 7 Tips To Reach Financial Security Before 30

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Tip 1:  Understand your most important asset

Your most important asset, when it comes down to finances and financial security is yourself!  Your career, your experiences, and any opportunities you’ve had, or will have play a role in establishing you as an adult and your financial future. It is your career and career opportunities which help to build your financial independence, so making the right choices is critical to the future.

Tip 2:  If you set short-term goals, the long-term will fall into place

It’s a fact! Planning too far into the future can leave you feeling defeated and let down, but planning short-term, realistic goals can get you on the right track and keep you there! Short-term goals should be kept realistic so they can be achievable.

Tip 3:  Develop an action plan and then worry about saving

Become a planner before you start trying to save and meet financial goals. If you plan right and stay goal oriented, you can meet the majority of financial goals you establish. For instance, setting a timetable to pay on specific bills like: credit card bills, school loans–and more, will help you prepare for a better road to financial independence.

Tip 4:  Stick to frugal spending habits

Teach yourself the value of money early, while in college even. If you can stick to those frugal habits you were forced to while in graduate school you’ll make better decisions for your financial future!

Tip 5:  Don’t live beyond your means

Don’t be like so many others and worry about making an impression in the crowd.  Living beyond your means open up the door to more debt, something you clearly want to avoid. When you do have excess funds, don’t fall into the trap of using this as an excuse to spend.  Saving your hard earned money is far more important than a new gadget!

Tip 6:  You have to become financially literate

This is a critical one!  Taking the time to research and educate yourself on saving and investing will ensure you stay on top of your financial future. Financial education will help you achieve all your financial endeavors and assist you in making the right investment decisions throughout your life.

Tip 7:  Always take advantage of the financial freebies!

You would be wrong to not take advantage of what is free!  From free seminars to free monthly savings accounts; freebies are meant to help you! Take advantage of the new Canadian tax laws and benefit funds without feeling embarrassed!  Many of these will allow you tax savings and help you get money back at the end of the year.

Savings for life

 

 


5 Pain-Free Ways You Can Save Money In 2016

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Yes, certainly it can be difficult to save large sums of money for many families all across British Columbia, but smaller, more realistic goals are achievable.  In other words, families shouldn’t just throw in the towel and not save money, just because it feels, or appears to be futile.  Even small gains can go a long way!  Now, yes, it is also true that it is easier to talk about saving, rather than actually doing it.  However, most will find that once they establish a savings plan, it becomes a habitual act.  We all want to save for the future and some well-advised tips and strategies that are presented here just might make the approach to savings much more feasible.

Pain-Free Ways For Your 2016 Savings Plan

When you’re contemplating better ways to manage your money you really need to dig deep to reach the root of your issues. From your attitude to money to how well you get along on a budget and more–you really need to sit down and go over your portfolio thoroughly.  One example of really taking account of your finances would lie in asking yourself if you think you really need a financial adviser to help you get on track?  If you’re interested in investing, or you simply need tips on short-term and long-term financial goals, an adviser could be an asset.

Time to look at some top tips for your current and future financial goals!

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Tip 1:  So, when do you really need some sound financial advice?

It’s simple.  When it comes to money and finding solutions regarding money, relevant tips and advice are always welcome. Whether a Canadian is interested in opening a savings account, or putting money into savings bonds–learning as much as possible about what will benefit the individual is important. Understanding what cash products will help you save the most, and which are the most risky is important!  In other words, financial advice is always going to be an asset if it is coming from the right place!

Tip 2:  Imagine learning how to budget on a low income

Don’t use the excuse of having a smaller income as a reason not to start building a nest egg.  Take the time to educate yourself and discover new ways you can break those financial barriers and start putting up for the future.  Here again, a financial adviser might be a helpful asset.  Start shopping smart, cutting excess costs, and be more honest with yourself!

Tip 3:  Take advantage of benefits your eligible for

Just an example of this is checking into the Interest Free Budgeting Loan from the Social Fund.  Many Canadians are unaware they meet eligibility requirements–partly because of a lack of research.  Benefits like these can make a dramatic difference for your financial future.  A budgeting loan can really be extremely beneficial to those on a lower income in that it can help with:

  • clothing and footwear
  • furniture needs
  • Employment education
  • Travelling expenses for work

These benefits can help a family manage their finances better when they are attempting to get a handle on their financial future!

Hispanic woman looking at change in glass jar

Tip 4:  Pay attention to borrowing and loan habits

If families are going to find some financial stability and save money the way they want to, they have to monitor their loan habits.  While payday loans can be good short-term options, too many become dependent on these.  The goal should be to steer away from these and not to rely on them to pay one’s bills.  So, again, if Canadians are to gain a handle on money, monitoring this area closely is critical.

Tip 5:  Make sure you are held accountable for your financial circumstances

Accountability is extremely important, especially when talking about saving.  If you’re accountable of your finances then you have to admit when you’re mismanaging your finances, or overspending in general. This is often the reason savings goals aren’t met like they should be.   So, be ready to point to yourself when, or if you miss your target savings goal!  It might motivate you to meet this and more the next time around!

 

 

 

Ready To STOP Living Paycheck To Paycheck?

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Don’t fall into the statistics that currently show 61% of the workforce in and around British Columbia living paycheck to paycheck.  If you’re curious as to how you would know if you fit into this criteria, let us explain a bit better.  Clearly, if you’re finding that you’re running out of income before your next paycheck rolls in, you’re in the above mentioned margin.  This can become suffocating, but there are ways you can stop this endless cycle of stress and worry too.  If you want to lose the doom and gloom attitude you have to change your current lifestyle habits.

We do understand how it can feel.  If you are one of the many in Canada living paycheck to paycheck, we understand that getting out of debt can feel almost impossible, but as we mentioned, it really is not.  There are many Canadians who have broken free from this cycle and are now living a healthier, happier life.  You can too!  We’ve discussed getting a hold of finances before–but we felt it was more practical to discuss how you manage your money.

When you do live this way you’re very limited as to what you can and can’t do and what you can even mentally cope with. For instance, Canadian families who are trapped in this way can’t plan ahead.  There is no way to really plan for an emergency, or even think about planning for a vacation.  There is simply no time to enjoy living–period.  So, those who want change want to know, what is the solution?  The first step is understanding there is a problem that has to be fixed.  For many, this is the hardest step of them all.

It’s Time To Recognize The Problem And Work On The Solution

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So, you’re ready to try to break away from this chaotic lifestyle, but not sure where, or how you should start.  What steps do you need to take to start making life simpler–easier, and happier?  Just one of the first things an individual can do to begin changing and improving their life is shaving away excess expenses.  While you might think there is no where to cut back, you’ll be amazed to find savings hiding right under your nose!  Putting your nose to that grindstone will help you to begin seeing some light, it’s a fact!  Just because conventional wisdom illustrates everything gets more expensive over time is no reason to live in a trapped lifestyle!  The following tips will help you begin on the right financial road!

Tip 1:  Start paying bills right upon arrival

Delaying paying your bills on time increases fees, especially those late fees!  Why not save that money and pay on time?  If you begin budgeting and planning appropriately you can!  This should be a first step goal for those wanting to stop the vicious paycheck to paycheck cycle.

Bills

Tip 2:  Work together, with your significant other

Many couples today share accounts, and more often than not, one doesn’t know what the other is doing financially.  It is time to start working together to plan and save.  Go over your bills together.  Go over what budget you can both live with monthly.  Split your spending and stick to that spending budget.  Both people should always be held accountable!

Tip 3:  Educate and learn some basic skills

If you could learn some basic plumbing, carpentry, home improvement–imagine how much you could cut back and save! You wouldn’t have to forsake quality materials either, because you’d be cutting out that expensive middle man! It’s a smart decision and one you’d be glad to have!

Put a cap on non-essential spending

Just because you have the money available doesn’t mean you should waste it, does it?  Putting a cap on monthly spending can save a potential $200 a month for most!  If you don’t need it, don’t get it!  Most people are discovering they become dissatisfied with spur of the moment purchases.  Save the money for something more useful!

stop the cycle

Break the living paycheck to paycheck cycle and streamline your finances!  You’ll be far happier and far more healthier if you do so today!

 

 

5 Clever Ways You Can Save BIG On Valentines Day

Valentines

Valentines Day: it’s one of the most commercialized holidays out of the year, next to Christmas.  There is no doubt that this particular day can take a toll on an individuals wallet, but why?  Through the years, Cupid has appeared to present the idea that the only way for lovers to express love and care for one another is through spending that hard earned money, but how much truth really exists here?  It shouldn’t empty your purse to put a smile on someone else’s face, do you think?  We don’t think it should at all.  The sad truth is that restaurants, jewelry stores, floral shops, and even boutiques hope to capitalize on this day, but you don’t have to get yourself caught up in the craziness of the holiday.  There are plenty of ways to express love, gratitude, endearment and happiness.  Are you ready to learn how and see just how you can save some of your money at the same time?

Yes, You Can Save A Little Cash On Cupids Day

Young couple kissing

Never forget how nice it is to show someone else how much they mean.  We don’t want this to get overshadowed in the money shuffle.  It is the thought that counts the most, and if you’re ready to have a memorable day with the one you love, think creatively, but stay realistic about your budget too.  The following below great ideas are very romantic, and we’re sure your Valentine’s will be wholly appreciative to you for thinking of them!

Why not cook a romantic meal together?

There is nothing more romantic than a man in the kitchen who truly is passioned about what he is doing.  Cooking a beautiful Valentines meal together could be the most memorable moment a couple can share.

Take a cooking class together!

This can be a lot of fun, and it can teach that man a thing or two as well!  Cooking classes are fairly inexpensive, and they provide a couple time together, which is always important!

Create an original and well thought out coupon book!

These never go wrong, and more importantly, they are worthwhile!  While it is a traditional idea and gift, look for original ideas to put into it.  The coupons are for what you think is most rewarding!  And guess what–this costs nothing!

Take dancing classes together!

If neither of you are very good dancers, taking a dancing class together can be very sexy!  You can laugh with one another, versus laughing at one another!  Better yet, you can learn some sexy moves that will turn you both on!  It’s inexpensive, romantic and spicy at the same time.

Create a photo album of memories on Valentines day

What can be more emotionally connecting?  Going through old photos and looking at what you’ve experienced up to this point is very emotional!  Once again, it’s free and you can have so much fun putting a gift like this together with each other!

If you really think about what all you can do to show your special someone they mean more than they’ll ever realize, you’ll find there really are some amazing activities out there that cost little to nothing.  You don’t have to go to an expensive restaurant or spend a fortune at a retail store.  You can save money at this traditional holiday, without ever making your special someone feel less than the most important thing in your life! Couples want to feel connected and time shared is the best way to make someone feel they matter!  Of course, for women, having that little something extra doesn’t hurt though!

VDay Gifts

HAPPY VALENTINES DAY!