Category Archives: Your Financial Portfolio

How to Financially Prepare for a Recession

Nobody likes to think about recessions and all the havoc which they can bring upon a society and to the economy. Nevertheless, many people have lived through and experienced the plights of recessions. Although they take a toll on virtually everyone, members of society who are most vulnerable and least prepared tend to suffer on considerably higher levels. This is what makes financial preparation so absolutely paramount.

Failure to plan is ultimately a plan for failure. However, the following steps will allow people to not only prepare for a recession, but also protect the businesses and funds which they have garnered over the years.

Consistently Save Money

As stated by Money Talks News, constantly putting aside money always make a big difference, but it especially comes in handy during a recession. Financial advisors currently recommend for people to put aside at least six months to one year’s worth of living expenses. This is something which a surprisingly high percentage of people fail to do. Many of them believe that a crisis will not befall them, but a safety net always comes in handy. Consistently saving a certain percentage of funds from each paycheck makes a difference.

Saving money prior to a recession can truly determine the difference between survival and homelessness.

Look Into the Gig Economy

There are many opportunities which exist within the gig economy. Driving for Lyft/Uber, renting out rooms on Airbnb, content writing, graphic design work, and more are all opportunities which people can and should take advantage of. Not only does this allow for individuals to create an additional revenue stream, but funds earned in the gig economy can be put into savings, bills, etc.

Every person will find that money and savings are their greatest economical allies, especially in the face of a pending recession.

Pay off Any Incurred Debts

Another important thing to do in preparation for a recession is paying off debts. No matter the state of the economy, credit card companies will continue to charge interest for unpaid balances. Over time, this can truly chip away at your income; besides, any money which goes towards interest is lost income which could have otherwise gone towards savings or bills. It’s also worth noting that paying interest does not decrease one’s debt, but merely lessens the fees for not paying one’s debt on time.

Money is an incredibly valuable resource; it becomes infinitely more valuable during times when the economy is experiencing a recession. For this reason, everyone should be actively working to become debt-free.

A Final Word

Ideally, people should be saving money, creating additional revenue streams, and paying off debts regardless of whether or not a recession lies in the near future. Being in the strongest financial state is always the best way to set oneself up for success. While economic recessions might prompt stronger precautions, you can never go wrong when you are in good financial health.

 

Authored by Gabrielle Seunagal

How to Earn Passive Income

Virtually everyone has heard of passive income at one point or another. In essence, passive income is defined by Wikipedia as “income resulting from cash flow received on a regular basis, requiring minimal to no effort by the recipient to maintain it.”

In most cases, this passive income requires a degree of work in the initial phases before the ongoing payoffs. Many people would love to experience this type of revenue, but are unaware of how to lay the groundwork for it. Moreover, passive income is one of the critical components which well-off individuals use to earn and (especially) maintain their wealth.

Going forth are some particularly useful ways in which the average person can earn passive income, thus enriching themselves and increasing their net worth.

Get Serious about Investing

While there are a variety of passive income earning methods, investing is one of the best. According to The Motley Fool, stock dividends, real estate investment trust (REIT) dividends, rentals, and more can be great avenues for passive income. This is because each of these avenues come with ongoing income streams which continue long after the initial payment or purchase.

However, with rentals, there is a degree of work which has to be done. For instance, the property may need to be maintained, cleaned, and otherwise inspected from time to time. Picking the right tenants also makes a difference as well; the ideal tenants will take care of the property they’re renting and pay their monthly rent on time.

Start an Online Blog or YouTube Channel

Not everyone has the big bucks to invest in real estate or stocks. However, these are not the only ways to generate passive income. Online blogs and YouTube channels can be excellent avenues for earning revenue and moreover, they don’t require hundreds or thousands of dollars upfront. However, both online blogs and YouTube channels do require a degree of time before the passive income reaches hefty amounts.

Blogging through WordPress allows writers to put ads via Google AdSense on their page. When readers click on the ads, the blogger earns income. The only catch is the number of readers which view the blog. Ideally, the writer should have a sizeable viewership. The more people who view their blog, the more opportunities to earn passive income.

A similar principle applies to YouTube channels. Starting this year, YouTube mandated certain benchmarks which must be met in order for content creators to monetize their channels. However, after building up a sizeable following base, an online blog and/or YouTube channel can be quite profitable and become a lucrative stream of passive income.

A Final Word

One of the most important things to remember about passive income is that an initial investment is usually required in the beginning prior to the accumulation of ongoing revenue; that investment usually comes in the form of time or money. However, there are a variety of opportunities regarding earning passive income.

Different paths work for different people. For specific advice tailored to one’s own personal needs, consulting a financial advisor is recommended.

 

Authored by Gabrielle Seunagal

How to Make the Most of Bitcoin

Bitcoin’s inception as a popular form of electronic cryptocurrency began in 2009. Many individuals have their own thoughts, speculations, and even doubts about Bitcoin. While some view it as a great form of virtual currency, others worry about its potential to be used for illegal or other dubious means. Additional individuals remain in the dark or otherwise unaware of how Bitcoin truly works and all that it entails.

Now, this form of cryptocurrency is not for everyone and that’s OK. Nevertheless, having a fundamental understanding of Bitcoin, its ins and outs, and how to make the most of it, can come in handy for just about anyone.

Know Where to Store Bitcoin

As stated by The College Investor, users who purchase Bitcoin should also store their cryptocurrency in a virtual wallet known as Coinbase. Not only does this virtual wallet allow Bitcoin purchasers to hold their cryptocurrency, but users can also make payments, purchase goods/services, and experience security features which are designed to protect Bitcoin.

While Coinbase is a pretty reputable virtual wallet for storing Bitcoin, there are certain fees associated with the trade of the cryptocurrency.

Be Aware of Bitcoin Fun Facts

Bitcoin is a mildly complex form of cryptocurrency. While many people take time to do their research before making any purchases, knowing some basic trivia always comes in handy.

First and foremost, Bitcoin cannot be inflated, counterfeited, or otherwise manipulated unlike more mainstream forms of currency, as stated by We Use Coins. However, the overall value of Bitcoin also ebbs and flows. This can result in substantial gains or losses when purchases are made with the cryptocurrency.

Users can get the most bang for their Bitcoin by making purchases at opportune times; also be mindful of the fact that Bitcoin’s rapid surges and declines in value can make predicting the best times for purchase somewhat challenging. More often than not, it is often left up to either chance or instinct.

Another important factor regarding Bitcoin is its permanence. Transactions are completely nonrefundable and irreversible; therefore, users of this cryptocurrency should always be 100% sure that they want what they’re paying for. Moreover, Bitcoin does not have to go through a traditional banking system in order to be used.

There are also more and more companies and institutions which are accepting Bitcoin as payment; however, others are not. For this reason, doing research on Bitcoin-friendly organizations and businesses can save a lot of trouble.

Purchase Bitcoin Properly

Those who are interested in purchasing Bitcoin should be sure to do in via reputable sites. There are countless scams and phony web pages which pretend to sell Bitcoin all for the sake of stealing money from unsuspecting individuals. Therefore, established legitimate sites such as Coinbase, Indacoin, Kraken, and SpectroCoin should be used by people who are interested in getting ahold of some cryptocurrency.

 

Authored by Gabrielle Renee Seunagal

How to Recover From Bankruptcy

Millions of individuals have filed for bankruptcy since its inception. This may come as a shock to many people who generally view bankruptcy as a state in which irresponsible individuals find themselves. Although bankruptcy occurs when someone is unable to pay their debts, there are a variety of circumstances and decisions which can bring about this unfortunate situation.

According to Investopedia, medical expenses, employment loss, excessive spending/misuse of credit cards, marital divorce, unforeseen financial emergencies, and more expenses than revenue are some of the most common factors which have prompted bankruptcy. In the best case scenarios, people would proactively take steps to avoid digging themselves into this hole, but the best scenario is not always the one which ends up playing out.

Thankfully, there is still hope and various ways in which people can recover and otherwise break free of the bondage that is bankruptcy.

Pinpoint Your Financial Habits Which Prompted Bankruptcy

Many great minds have stated that those who fail to learn from history and past mistakes are doomed to repeat them. This is especially applicable to financial habits and money-related decisions. As a matter of fact, U.S. News recommends people to evaluate their financial choices and pinpoint exactly what led them into bankruptcy. Someone who went bankrupt because of debts should actively seek out additional revenue streams. An individual who experienced bankruptcy due to an unforeseen emergency should be sure to habitually put aside funds in the event of unexpected expenses. Failure to prepare is, in essence, preparation for failure.

Make Payments with Cash or Debit ONLY

So many cases of bankruptcy can be traced back to people living way above their means and constantly swiping credit cards for things that they can’t afford. This type of reckless spending is extremely problematic and will certainly kill any potential for forthcoming financial gain and security. Therefore, making payments exclusively with cash or debit not only prevents excessive credit card use, but cash and debit payments furthermore motivate the individual to earn the necessary funds to cover their expenses.

Credit cards can be beneficial if the person exercises discipline and self-control. As a matter of fact, many companies have advised individuals who are recovering from bankruptcy to use credit cards. However, a person who still lacks the control to not swipe, swipe, swipe the card at every turn will probably do well to simply make cash or debit payments. After gaining some financial security and acumen, one can then look into applying for a credit card.

Relinquish Self Blame

Although taking responsibility for one’s actions is paramount, so is not falling into the trap of negative self-talk. Bankruptcy is not fun, nor is it an easy state to be in; therefore, many people can eventually begin to feel perpetually discouraged. This feeling will not change bankruptcy, however, excessive self-blame does have the potential to distract from steps that the individual could take as they work to improve their financial health.

Remember…getting knocked down happens to all of us, but the decision to stay down is entirely different. There is always room for self-improvement. It all begins with you.

 

Authored by Gabrielle Seunagal

Financial Advice for Less Well-Off Individuals

Life is different for each and every person. People have different work lives, different families, and different situations. Some people make millions per year while others make thousands. Some individuals are able to independently support themselves which other may receive assistance from friends, relatives, or even the government. Despite the stereotypes and assumptions which are usually made regarding high-income people and low-income people, the great equalizer comes in the form of benefits of financial advice.

Granted, financial recommendations for someone who earns $100,000 annually will be different from a person who earns a yearly income of $10,000. Nevertheless, the following strategies and hints are great for less fortunate individuals.

Engage in Extremely Frugal Money Management

When funds are tight, frugality is absolutely paramount. While saving money can be difficult when funds are low, there are generally certain steps which can be taken to truly get the complete bang for one’s buck. KNS Financial has some excellent tips: first and foremost is seeking out banks which do not bill monthly fees or otherwise require customers to maintain a certain amount of funds within the account. There may also be certain banks which choose not to bill low-income customers with overdraft fees.

Another excellent way to stretch money is selling items which are in reasonable shape, yet not used very frequently. Some people do this by having yard sales, listing their items on Craigslist, or pawning them at applicable shops. Upon attaining these extra funds, putting them aside is a really proactive way of getting used to saving money.

Other simple, yet effective ways of frugally handling money include, but are not limited to, buying groceries on sale, walking (or carpooling), using utilities conservatively, and unplugging devices which are not being currently. This can truly add up and save money, especially when done habitually.

Look for Relatively Inexpensive Ways to Increase Income

While saving and being frugal with current funds is a great first step, it will only do so much for low-income people. The best thing that less fortunate people can do for themselves is increase their earnings. In 2018, there are a variety of available options, even for individuals who were recently laid off, currently in between jobs, or otherwise unemployed. The gig economy is a truly innovative and lucrative tool for people to take advantage of. Those who do not have computers or laptops in their home can go to the library and use the internet to create profiles on freelancing job boards such as Upwork, Freelancer, or Fiverr. Other options include driving for Lyft or Uber or renting out rooms on Airbnb.

A Final Word

At the end of the day, rising above poverty ultimately entails two life changes: decreasing expenses and increasing income. Ideally, doing both of these things simultaneously is the best course of action. Not only are lowered expenses and surging income a blueprint to escaping from poverty, but it also sets less fortunate people on the track to achieving wealth. Although Rome wasn’t built in a day, it did come into being with consistency and time.

The same dynamic applies to the aforementioned steps which will eventually engender the rise from financial hardship to financial prosperity.

 

By Gabrielle Seunagal