Financial McNuggets (mac[KEY]nuggets)
September: Mac [KEY] nuggets
1. Term Insurance- under this type of insurance the insured must die before the term expires for which benefits are to be paid. If the insured survives to the expiration of the “term” the insurance protection terminates. Initially, the cash outlay for insurance protection is relatively low so that the policy owner receives the maximum short term protection for the minimum cash outlay. “The Tools and Techniques of Estate Planning” Stephan Leimberg
Mac [Key] nuggets: For example, you can get $250,000 of insurance for a lower premium (price), but when the term (1yr, 2, 5, 10, 15, 20yr etc.) expires your insurance will go UP significantly (depending on your insurance company). The $250,000 is ONLY paid if the insured dies during the term. This type of insurance does NOT have cash value (savings account feature).
2. “Change is painful. Few people have the courage to seek out change. Most people won’t change until the pain of where they are exceeds the pain of change. When it comes to money, we can be like the toddler in a soiled diaper. I know it smells bad, but it’s warm and it’s mine” --- The Total Money Makeover - Dave Ramsey
Mac [Key] nuggets: Do NOT wait until your financial situation becomes like Lazarus it “STINKETH”. Why does it stink? I haven’t done anything about it. How many of us did not change our son/daughters pamper when we smelled the “STINK”? Most of us handled our business rapidly to get rid of the scent (changed diaper) that caused the whole room to stink. We must take that same attitude towards our financial situation. Do not sit in the financial MESS that stinks. The sooner you do something about your financial situation; it will NOT be so stinking MESSY.
3. “The elective deferral (contribution) limit for employees who participate in 401(k), 403(b), most 457 plans, and the federal government’s Thrift Savings Plan remains unchanged at $18,000.” ----IRS.gov
4. “The limit on annual contributions to an Individual Retirement Arrangement (IRA) remains unchanged at $5,500. The additional catch-up contribution limit for individuals aged 50 and over is not subject to an annual cost-of-living adjustment and remains $1,000.” ----IRS.gov
October: Mac [KEY] nuggets
1. Emergency Fund: is money set aside to make it easy to take care of problems/issues that just pop out of nowhere. Do you know when your next emergency will happen? No, most of us do not know when our next emergency will be. If we have an emergency fund ($$$) it will help soften the blow of an unexpected repair bill or mandatory evacuation of your home. All of us were under a mandatory evacuation of Camden County, but all of could not leave the area. Why not? We did not have an **Emergency Fund $$$**.
The order came on a Thursday morning, but some of us don’t get paid until Friday. So what did some of us have to do? We had to stay in place and put our family lives in danger all because some of us live pay check to pay check. As we learned from September nugget #2 this situation “STINKETH”. Then do something about it **TODAY**. Do NOT spend every dollar you have and have no plan for emergencies. You must put back $25, $50, and $100 per paycheck into an emergency fund (savings). This amount will build as time goes on and no emergency occurs. Nugget #2 (September) “The sooner you do something about your financial situation; it will NOT be so stinking MESSY.”
2. Somethings to consider for future storm preparations: the earlier the better
a. Get cash out of bank early. Smaller bills are better to have than large bills($1’s 5, 10, 20 vs. $50,$100 bills)
b. Get plenty of bottle water and other quick food to eat. You may be without power and water for a few days to weeks.
c. Fill bathtub(s), sink(s), and washing machine with water. This gives you the ability to have water for various things. Especially water to flush the toilets.
d. Fill up your car(s) with gas.
e. Get gas for generators. They’re a tremendous help. Especially, when your freezer is full of groceries. **DO NOT** use generators inside. They must be in an area outside to exhaust the harmful gases (carbon monoxide).
f. Get propane tank for gas grill
**Most Americans can't handle a $500 surprise bill**
3. Despite the stronger economy, a lack of emergency savings that would help them weather an unexpected expense such as a health crisis or car breakdown remains a serious handicap. In fact, about 63 percent of Americans say they're unable to handle a $500 car repair or a $1,000 emergency room bill, according to a new survey from Bankrate.com.
4. About six out of 10 American households experienced a financial shock during the last year, with major car repairs and lost income ranking among the most common, The Pew Charitable Trusts found in a study published last year.
"These things do happen, and if you don't have the financial resources to handle it, it can be catastrophic if you are living on the edge," said Bankrate.com senior investing analyst Sheyna Steiner. ~~Bankrate.com
November: Mac [KEY] nuggets
1. Red Faced and fists clenched, the toddler yells with murder in his voice, “I want it! I want it! I want it!” We have all watched this scene unfold in the grocery store. We may even have watched our own children do this (once). Now that I’m older and more mellow, I sometimes grin a little as a young mom tries without success to stifle the out-of-control screams of a child who is denied something. It is human nature to want to it and want it now; it is also a sign of immaturity. Being willing to delay pleasure for a greater result is a sign of maturity. However, our culture teaches us to live for the now. “I want!” we scream, and we can get I, if we are willing to go into debt. Debt is a means to obtain the “I want its” before we can afford them. ~~~Dave Ramsey
2. The Rule of 72
It works like this: Say you want your money to double in 10 years. To determine how much interest, you need to earn, just divide 10 into 72. Therefore, in order for your money to double in 10 years, you must earn 7.2% annually. If you earn 15% and want to know how long it will take to double your money, just dived 72 by 15. The answer: 4.8 years. ~~~The Truth about Money
3. If your credit report contains errors, you owe it to yourself to clean it up. While it can be somewhat frustrating, this task is very doable. There are three large credit bureaus and they collect data on just about every financial transaction we undertake. They get this information from just about every creditor we do business with. On an annual basis, the creditors and the credit bureaus process billions of data points. No matter how hard they try, a mistake is bound to happen once in a while. ~~~Clark Howard
4. It might be unfair, but creditors and credit bureaus don’t have to prove their claims are right. Unfortunately, it’s up to you to prove it if there is a mistake on your credit report. That’s why your best ally in this battle is paper or electronic receipts. Do you have evidence that shows a debt was paid or payments were made on a timely basis? Do you have canceled checks or PayPal history that proves the information on your credit report is false? Please gather your proof before even reaching out to the creditor or credit bureaus. Without evidence, you will find it to be nearly impossible to achieve any positive results. ~~~Clark Howard
December: Mac [KEY] nuggets
1. Are you still paying for last Christmas (on your Visa or Master Card)? Things that make you go Hmmmmm???
Answer: I’m still paying for last Christmas on my Visa and/or Master Card and I’m adding more for this Christmas. Things that make you go Hmmmm???
Think about it. Ask yourself, what am I doing? Answer: I’m going deeper and deeper into DEBT. Why? ***Pay CASH or DO NOT purchase it.***
2. If you get gift cards as a gift ensure you check to see if they have expiration dates on them. If they do have expiration dates inform personnel about the expiration date or the whole gift (investment) can be lost because they did not use the gift card in prior to the expiration date.
3. Medicare Open Enrollment Ploy: What it is: In the fall, a few weeks before Medicare Open Enrollment begins, individuals claiming to be from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Servicers (CMS) call seniors saying the agency is issuing new Medicare ID cards. But to receive the card, seniors must confirm their identity by volunteering their bank account information and often their Social Security number. The callers then use that information to debit the seniors accounts and commit other forms of identity theft.~~~Consumer Reports
How to protect yourself: Never respond to a phone request to confirm your identity. Medicare will NEVER call, email or visit you to ask for your personal information.~~~Consumer Reports
4. TAX season is rapidly approaching. Give yourself a $250 raise every two weeks. How can you do it? If you receive a $6000 tax refund back, all you have to do is divide that $6000 by 12 months.
$500/2 = $250 per pay check (every 2 weeks)
This is will extend your tax refund out for 12 months instead of 1 or 2 months.
Ways to save in 2017:
1. Adopt the “pay yourself first” method:
Whenever you get a paycheck, pay your savings account first (of course do not forget about God) to make sure putting away money gets prioritized over impulse spending. ~~~ United 1st Credit Union
2. Plan your meals for the week to avoid eating out:
The season of the crock pot is upon us. Make big meals and freeze the leftovers so you aren’t tempted to order in. ~~~ United 1st Credit Union
3. Try a "no spend weekend" (i.e., no resturants or recreational shopping)
Use your food at home to make meals and plan to invite friends over or spend some quality time with Netflix (Bible Study and/or Prayer.) ~~~United 1st Credit Union
4. Tax season is here make your Tax refund last all year. For example, a refund of $6000 (6000/12=$500 per month). Therefore, increase your paycheck by $500 (per month), $250 (every 2 weeks) or $125 (every week). Hence, how you can make your tax refund last ALLLLLLLLLLL year.
Here's how to improve your credit score
If you're suffering from poor credit, there are several surefire ways to get your credit healthy again. Follow these tips and you'll be well on your way:
1. Always pay your bills on time and pay down the total amount you owe.
2. Keep a low credit utilization rate. Aim to use only 30% or less of your available credit at any one time.
3. When you pay off a credit card, don't close the account.
4. Make sure different types of credit make up your credit mix. But avoid store cards at all costs!
5. Don't open too many new lines of credit at once. ~~~~ClarkHoward.com
–Matching contributions by some employers