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Doing A Wedding On A Budget

Will you marry me?    That magical phrase is shared between two people in love every day whether it be on a baseball scoreboard or with the entire family watching on in the living room.    Today student debt for Generation Y graduates is approaching an all-time high.  About two-thirds of college grads in the Class of 2013 will graduate with some student loan debt. The average debt for these students is about $28,000. (source: www.usatoday.com).  The real question couples should be asking when they tie the knot is “Am I marrying you or your debt?”   It’s important to have these discussions as financial items including your credit score can have an impact on loan status and job employment as you grow your future together.    If you both agree that money is tight, what are the best ideas on how to do your wedding right but still have fun within a reasonable budget?   Here are five smart money moves tips for you ...

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3% Interest Rates Are Going, Going, Gone!

“The financial crisis that began in 2007 was the most intense period of global financial strains since the Great Depression, and it led to a deep and prolonged global economic downturn. The Federal Reserve took extraordinary actions in response to the financial crisis to help stabilize the U.S. economy and financial system. These actions included reducing the level of short-term interest rates to near zero. In addition, to reduce longer-term interest rates and thus provide further support for the U.S. economy, the Federal Reserve has purchased large quantities of longer-term Treasury securities and longer-term securities issued or guaranteed by government-sponsored agencies such as Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. Low interest rates help households and businesses finance new spending and help support the prices of many other assets, such as stocks and houses. By law, the Federal Reserve conducts monetary policy to achieve maximum employment, stable prices, and moderate long-term interest rates” (source: federalreserve.gov) Does this all mean as the economy ...

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Entrepreneur Series – Lesson 3 – Know Your Role As The Owner

As an entrepreneur starting a new business, you often have to wear the hat of cook, dishwasher, accountant, and general manager.   However, one of the biggest mistakes a young owner will make is not quickly clarify their role within the organization.   Far too often, new entrepreneurs will try to control every aspect of a new business which inevitably slows the growth of the organization.  In some cases, it can make hiring and training new people so difficult it can be destructive to the success of a company. One of things I recommend to new business owners is to draw a T chart with one axis being things you like to do and one access being tasks that you are good at.    What you should quickly try to figure out in the early stage of a new company is to list all of the items that you are good at and those tasks that you like to do.    After figuring out ...

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Why Your Kid Needs To Be On Social Media

I knew as soon as I wrote this title that it seems to defy Jenkin logic. Why in the world Ted does my kid need to be on Social Media? With all the Instagramming, Facebooking, and Twittering, do I really need my child exposed to more technology and creepazoids who are trolling the Internet? My general thought around this has historically been no, but it is becoming increasingly hard to avoid the allure of freebies that can come by simply being plugged into social media. For those that thought this was a fad, you are quickly seeing a transformation around the future of how our children will do much of their communication. How is it possible that having your kids connected to social media can make them more smart money moves in their life? Here are three examples of how this change occurs: Example 1: BurgerFi (In Restaurant Giveaways)– For the past few weekends, my family and I have tried ...

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Entrepreneur Series | Lesson 2: Incorrectly Pricing Your Product Or Service

In the first year of a start up operation, there is a great focus of energy from the new business owner on client acquisition. Gaining new customers opens the floodgates for the generations of revenue to pay the bills of the business. However, one of the tough lessons learned by young owners is not thinking clearly though pricing out the services of your business correctly. Most new business owners tend to undervalue what they charge for their work and services in order to compensate for not being as established as their competitors. As long as you have a top notch customer service experience and offer a product or service that’s similar or better than a competitor, you shouldn’t devalue yourself. If you set this pattern up early with clients, it can be very difficult down the road to raise your prices with your initial customers. Here a few tips to determining if the price is right on your new product or ...

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Can You Pay 0% Capital Gains Tax?

Most of us have heard through the major media outlets how tax law changes will adversely affect our overall income taxes here in 2013. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize that when your expenses consistently exceed your revenue, cost cutting alone won’t improve your bottom line. This means that raising various types of taxes will definitely be one strategy to increase revenue in order to pay off the massive U.S. debt. The American Taxpayer Relief Act (ATRA) of 2012 was passed by Congress on January 1st, 2013 and was only a partial resolution to the fiscal cliff; just wait until fiscal cliff part II which will look more like ‘Hangover Part II’, Mike Tyson tattoo and all. While the ATRA did impose more taxes on the upper end of the scale and raised capital gains taxes on the very upper end of the income brackets, there is a unique opportunity for many Americans to look at their overall ...

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Is It Time To Call Mr. Handyman?

Like many of you, my home is filled with different types of small appliances. When something major goes kaput in our homes like the air conditioning, the refrigerator, or the stove, we don’t really think twice about the cost of calling a repairperson. Many of us had some type of mini refrigerator in our college dorm rooms or possibly our first apartment, and many homes today carry lots of small appliances, whether in tricked out basements or in the master bedroom. This past week, we had a mini refrigerator die on us and became confronted with this very simple question. Should we get someone here to fix it or just buy a new one? What do mere mortals like us who can’t play Tim The Toolman, nor do they want to on a Saturday afternoon, do to fix the problem? I haven’t written a blog post on this yet, but it has occurred to me that some serious analysis should ...

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Are You Worried About A Stock Market Crash Again?

“Our imagination is the most important faculty we possess. It can be our greatest resource or our most formidable adversary. It is through our imagination that we discern possibilities and options. Yet imagination is no mere blank slate on which we simply inscribe our will. Rather, imagination is the deepest voice of the soul and can be heard clearly only through cultivation and careful attention”- Pat Allen (source: notable-quotes.com). Our brains are constantly being fed information about the stock market every day. The end is coming. The run will continue. Get in. Get out. For most of us, this noise can be information overload and send our brains into a virtual state of shock. With markets hitting all-time highs this year, many people have become concerned that we will see a repeat of dot-com bubble crash in 2000 and the recent 2008 market crash. So if you are worried about a 3rd Armageddon in the past 15 years, what smart ...

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How To Save Money On Shoes

Many women (and now men) have a decent shoe collection in their closet. As parents, we know that after spending lots of money on clothes for our kids, shoes can come in a close second for the family budget. Between growth spurts, general wear and tear, and special events, kids can change shoes faster than Vin Diesel drives in Fast 6! One of the smart money move habits we can all get into this year is thinking about using different strategies to reduce our shoe costs. Here are five of my tips on how to keep light on your feet while keeping your cash in the wallet. 1)   Buy Out Of Season– With most items we buy in life, buying during the peak season is primarily when you will pay the highest dollar amount for anything especially shoes. Most parents will begin the process of stocking up on school supplies and running their children over to the shoe store to ...

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