Prioritize Spending Based On Overall Happiness

Except for the really rich, we all need to watch our spending. Money management is a very simple concept; spend less than we earn! Easy to say, but difficult to do especially at various stages of our lives.

When we are young we are like a growing business, we need to invest in homes, our families and other things for getting established. This makes it almost impossible to spend less than we earn, so it is necessary to use debt to build our lives. It is also necessary to establish priorities for what we buy with cash or debt.

If we prepare a budget early on it will help us get control of our necessities very quickly. If we are honest we discover that it doesn't take a lot of income to just survive. Then we need to focus on making enough money to pay for them and have some money left over, or a profit as a business would call it. Our profit should be invested in a backup fund and other things we need to build our lives and live free. This is a very over-simplified financial model but it is a very fundamental one.

Prioritizing our expenditures that are not necessities is where we often get into trouble. Over spending results in high credit card balances that are difficult to be free of and only makes it more difficult for us to invest in the things we really want, such as a house and improved living standards.

So, how do we establish priorities on how we use our discretionary cash? There are many resources for guiding us in making these decisions, but I have another way to look at it. We should prioritize our discretionary spending on what will make us happy!

My definition of happiness it to have inner peace, an other's centered purpose, and to make a living that gives us freedom. If we have credit cards that are over extended we will worry and have stress that inhibits our inner peace. If we focus too much on just ourselves, we will only see tons of things we want for self fulfillment. We may also fall in to envying others for what they have and seek to get those things for ourselves. We can become greedy, even if we are not wealthy. We often fall into a "pity party" when we get to self centered and believe we are "victims" as we are not paid enough, and don't have as much money as we deserve. This will only take us down and destroy our inner peace.

If we learn to be thankful for what we have and understand how much others don't have, our attitude can change. We can even consider using some of our discretionary money to help others.

So our spending priorities should be based on a higher level, that of having real happiness; inner peace, purpose and freedom that comes from controlling our debt. Some would call this avoiding instant gratification, I call it seeking total happiness.

With each expenditure we make we should ask ourselves the simple question, will this really make us happy?

Rob Severson, Author, Speaker and Financing Coach.
I help businesses get new financing to pay off unhappy banks or for rapid growth. I have been in the financial business over 40 years and have a wide breadth of experience in business issues. I have successfully coached 100's of business to get new financing. I know how to put a deal together.
I also wrote a book "Connectiing Peace, Purpose & Prosperity" that is a memoir written for my family showing them how I learned to live a life that is happy, joyous and free including making a living. It is a short interesting peek into an "average guy's" life and what he tells his heirs. I also do speaking gigs on the subject for churches, schools, AA groups and others

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Personal finance class

NPR's Tobia Smith reports on a popular personal finance class at Wellesley College. But why wait until college? When it comes to the fundamentals of personal finance every California schoolchild is being left behind. A decade ago I worked for a group of state securities regulators in Washington, D.C. that promoted financial literacy and personal finance classes in high school. One soundbite I crafted for our president: "We teach phys ed, sex ed and drivers ed, why not financial ed?" A question to be asked. The answer? Maybe that's the way some want it, to keep us stupid about money. Ignorant consumers, after all, don't read fine print, they don't ask questions, they don't comparison shop, they don't see through advertisements.

Welcome to the New Financial Realities: New Rules for a New Economy

If there is one thing that the financial crisis has taught us, it's that we can no longer afford to think about our personal finances as we did in the bubbly pre-recession days. In today's economy there are new financial realities that every consumer must understand.

Over the next few weeks Eleanor Blayney, CFP®, Consumer Advocate for Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP Board), will help steer consumers through the shifting economic landscape, by outlining the new rules for the new economy, in a series of nine videos, which can be found at

"In this uncertain economic climate, we must all -- as consumers, investors, and citizens -- become better informed, so that we can take control of our financial futures," said Kevin R. Keller, CEO of CFP Board. "As a seasoned CFP® practitioner, Eleanor understands that consumers need strategies for addressing the new and rapidly-changing financial realities."

Blayney said, "Our recent economic downturn has shown us that we must re-examine some basic assumptions about the ways we manage our finances. What made sense pre-recession no longer works today. In these videos, I offer consumers nine personal finance strategies to help them plan for what's ahead."

1. Put your own financial interests first, and work with an advisor you can trust

2. Use a multi-prong approach; investing by itself will not get you where you want to be. Spending, saving, and budgeting all play equal parts in building wealth

3. Think of yourself as an asset; investing in yourself can yield returns far greater than other investments

4. Learn the difference between good debt and bad debt

5. Get smart about the pros and cons of home ownership

6. Know it's no longer about retirement; it's about reinventing yourself for the last third of your life

7. Get your kids involved in family financial planning. Now is the time to talk to your kids about finances

8. Do not sacrifice your financial well-being for your children

9. Become financially literate. Commit to learning all that you can.

"As you consider your personal finances and prepare and respond to the new economic situation, remember you are not alone. CFP Board and the nearly 60,000 financial professionals who hold the CFP® marks stand ready to help you on your journey to a healthy financial future," said Blayney. "I wish you the best on your journey to a secure future."

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The Process of One Hour Payday Loans

It can be a scary feeling having bills looming on the immediate horizon that you do not have the resources to pay for. Bills that are going to result in the termination of some type of service, your water or electricity for example. Many times people are fortunate enough to be able to borrow money from family or friends. But in those instances when no other type of assistance is available it is comforting to know that a quick cash advance can be easily obtained. The solution comes in the form of a one hour payday loan. These loans have become so readily available that anyone who fits just a few basic requirements can qualify for quick cash. If you are 18 years of age and have held the same job for the last six months then you could be well on your way to a one hour payday loan.

You can still find walk-in establishments that will help you out but these days most people simply go online to find sources for payday loans, there are many. An internet search will quickly turn up dozens of lenders willing to help you out of a financial jam and the application process is a breeze. You will need to have your banking information ready as they will need to know where to direct deposit the funds. Be certain that all the information such as account numbers, routing numbers, social security numbers, etc. are valid. Lenders have the means to verify this information and will reject your application if the information is erroneous. Lenders prefer to serve those employed outside the home and not self employed because of the fluctuation of assets that comes with self employment. The lender needs to know for certain that the money is going to be available when you repay date rolls around.

As soon as you complete your application and submit it online the lender will need to verify that you earn about $1200-$1500 a month. One hour payday loan companies also try and refrain from doing business with applicants who are in the military and people who's income consists of receiving benefits. You will also be turned away if you have ever defaulted on a previous payday loan or you have a current loan out with another company. The approval process takes just minutes from the time that you submit your application. Once approved the funds are wire transferred directly into your account and are available for immediate withdrawal. When your loan comes due, generally no more than a month and usually just two weeks later, the lending institution simply withdraws the amount of the loan, plus interest and fees, back out of your account. It's that easy. So don't let the thought of overdue bills worry you, with a one hour payday loan literally at your fingertips you can borrow anywhere from $100-$1000 and avoid shut offs and reconnection fees and maybe in the process prevent another glitch on your credit history along the way.

Jennifer Meinert is an established author who enjoys writing and reviewing many topics including payday one hour and cash advance payday loans. Please visit her site at

How Do Payday Loan Advances Really Work?

Are you interested in receiving a payday loan advance? Are you not quite sure how these loans work and what the process is to get one? Well, they are very simple loans-in terms of the application process and the financing and repayment of them. These loans are based on what your regular paycheck amount is and then repaid in full on your next payday.

Many lenders do not pull a credit history to approve someone for a payday loan. This is because repayment is guaranteed-it comes directly from your next paycheck. If you are worried about your credit history being used to determine your eligibility for a payday loan advance, read through the lenders policies and guidelines first before applying.

Once filling out and submitting your online application, the approval process usually only takes a few minutes, if that long. Many online lenders are able to tell you right away if you are approved or not. If you do not get an immediate response, then further verification from you may be needed. Once you are pre-approved you may be requested to provide some sort of supporting documentation verifying your employment and income (such as faxing paycheck stubs to company). Other companies do not require this and will do the whole loan without you having to fax anything. After the company verifies your identity, your employment, and your income, then you usually receive a direct deposit of the loan proceeds into the bank account that you provided to the lender. This usually happens in 24 hours or less.

Do be careful when choosing your online lender. Due to the short duration of these loans, the interest rate and any applicable fees may be high. Do some research to find a lender with a reasonable rate. Also make sure that you do not borrow the money for a longer period of time than necessary. Doing so will cause you to pay back more money in interest than needed.

Jessie Bowers is an expert financial analyst and has been offering her valuable advice about legit payday loan lenders for quite sometime now. Please visit her website for more information on payday cash advance.

If You Need to Handle Cash-Flow Problems Payday Loan Advance

It happens more than some may think; another week or more until payday and an unexpected expense comes up. It may be a utility bill (or worse, a shut off notice) or maybe an emergency car repair. Whatever it is, money is needed fast. With a payday loan advance, you can get that money, whenever you need it. A payday loan advance is a short term loan for which you need no collateral and you need not fax any documentation. There is a simple online application to be filled out. As long as the applicant is over 18, employed and has a current checking account, the loan is normally approved and the money deposited into the applicant's bank account within hours.

Interest rates and fees vary, even among paycheck advance loan institutions, so you will want to check the terms and conditions carefully. Some places charge 30% on their loans while most only charge 20%. The loans are for a period of time between 2-4 weeks but most commonly 2 weeks. This gives the borrower enough time to pay the emergency expense and also get their next paycheck. It is quite literally like getting a loan on your next payday. Try to plan carefully so that when the loan is repaid, there is still money to live off of.

Life's little emergencies happen to everyone. Payday doesn't always come when it is needed. For times when extra cash is needed and payday is far off, think payday loan advance. The money is there for you,, whatever you need it for. Even if you want to take a weekend getaway, you can use a payday loan advance to do it. There are no questions asked. It's nice to know that no matter how far away payday is, there is money available here and now with a payday loan advance.

Jessie Bowers is an expert financial analyst and has been offering her valuable advice about safe legitimate payday loans for quite sometime now. Please visit her website for more information on advance payday loans.

Fast and Easy Payday Loan Advance

Now, you can get a cash advance by submitting an online application. It never has been easier to get the cash you are in urgent need for. Within a minute's time, you can already be approved for a payday loan advance and the money will be in your bank account by the next business day. If you are facing a dire emergency, these types of loans are here to assist you in your time of need.

Cash Advance or Payday Loans

There are many terms associated with payday loans, such as check loan, post-dated loan, or cash advance. No matter what you call it, they are the same type of loan. They are short-term in nature and you can borrow the same amount of money, which is from $100 to $1,000, depending on your lender.

The purpose of payday loan advances is to assist during financial emergencies that may occur when you least expect it. Instead of paying fees on late payments or bounced checks, you now have the option to secure a cash advance against your next pay check. You will save money if you choose to get a loan as an alternative to paying all of the fees you may be charged if you don't pay your bills on time. When your next payday arrives or in thirty days, you can repay the loan. If you choose to extend the loan, additional fees will apply.

Simple Application Process

You can currently get a payday loan advance by simply applying online from your home or anywhere else that has internet access. When you choose an appropriate lender's website, just enter your personal contact information and history of employment. The only requirements are that you have include that you must be an adult and have had the same job for three months. Your application will be reviewed within five minutes, and you will receive a notice (probably through e-mail) if you have been approved for the amount you asked to borrow.

Get a Cash Advance Quick

On the application, you provide your checking account routing number. Once approved, the lender will automatically deposit your funds in your bank account by the next business day. That is very quick service!

Hassle-Free Repayment Plan

You can also repay your loan through their online service. You will usually get the option of choosing from the following repayment plans when your loan is due: 1.) You can elect to pay only the finance charges, 2.) You can pay the entire loan off, or 3.) You can pay only a portion of the loan. If you extend your loan, you will also have the option of changing your re-payment plan to suit your current needs; however, this is entitled to more fees added to your existing loan sum.

Convenient Customer Service

There are many methods of contact the lender's customer service department if an issue arises. Generally, you can call or e-mail the lender. However, now there are even more ways of getting in touch with your lender. Now, your lender will answer your pressing questions by fax or an instant messaging service. The websites will also include relevant information to help answer your questions, such as their interest rate charges, re-payment plans, and frequently asked questions/answers.

Jessie Bowers is an expert financial analyst and has been offering her valuable advice about legit payday loans for quite sometime now. Please visit her website for more information on online cash loans.

How Teaching the Kids to Go Green Can Equal Saving, Cost-Cutting, and More Money For Your Family

Families everywhere are feeling this economy crisis. From smaller household budgets to less money for the little extras that kids enjoy, many are feeling the financial pinch of it all. While the world is experiencing this economy crisis, we are also an even bigger issue... a big need for greater environmental awareness and action. For families that want to make a difference for our world and still would like to save a few dollars to help their overall family budgets, we would like to present some basics for making that happen for you and your kids.

Teaching your children to help the planet by following a few basic steps could give your family just the financial push that it needs to get through this economy crisis. Some of these are really simple to do and others may take a little coordinating, but the final results of your labor, including saving, cost-cutting, and plumping up that family bank account will all seem worth it in the end. Here are a few do's and don'ts to help your family get started:

Do have the kids use rechargeable batteries or solar powered chargers for handheld games and small electronics. Your family could see an instant saving. Costs for replacing batteries can be astronomical when you sum up all of the batteries that you need to supply energy to the gobs of gadgets that your kids probably have. If there is not a USB charger available, which allows you to charge stuff directly from the computer, then find and use alternative energy sources such as rechargeable batteries and solar powered chargers. Regular batteries wreak havoc on the environment. So, using an alternative energy source saves the world and it saves you lots of money from not having to continuously buy batteries.

Do teach the kids to conserve water, especially during this economy crisis. Your children could save your family a mint just by minimizing their water consumption. Set a time limit for showers and encourage children to turn the water off while they are brushing their teeth. These little changes could have a huge impact on your family's water bill and could also help with our environment.

Do teach children to be creative with their water usage. Tell them to place 2 small cups or bowls in the shower when they are using it to catch the excess water. This water can then be used to water plants! They could also catch rainwater and use that for watering plants at a later time also. Either way, your family could experience a saving. Cost conscious people can really appreciate doing anything that could significantly reduce their water bills.

Do teach the kids to enjoy and take full advantage of sunlight. Tell them to turn off the lights when they are not using a room and to open the blinds or curtains to let the sunlight in. Sunlight is a free energy and light source. Learning to use and appreciate it now could make a difference as your child gets older in the way that they view energy. This economy crisis is making it important for all of us to take a different approach with certain things in our lives. The energy that your family saves by not running the electric lights all day could result in a much lower energy bill, which means more money left over in your family's household budget! Plus, less energy consumption is very important for our environment.

Do teach them to research and use frugal recipes that take advantage of locally grown produce and products that you can buy for cheap. Just about every area has a farmer's market. These markets are havens for saving money. From cheap produce to low price dairy, most families will see an amazing opportunity to save at this markets, over the regular retail prices. Plus, by making an effort to buy for cheap the local produce and products, you are helping to reduce emissions from planes and foods that have to travel to your area! A lot of that fresh produce is also organic which means that the farmers do not use harmful chemicals on the food.

Your children can learn to understand the importance of going green and will follow your lead on environmental issues. Teaching them to work to save our planet and to help your family by doing things to conserve to save money are life lessons that they will need in years to come. Teach them now and, once the world is through this economy crisis, they will know how to do their part to help to reduce environmental risks. With your guidance, they will know how to care for their family while maintaining a financially and "environmentally" sound budget!

Alexandra Vrugt, a recognized expert on saving money in daily life, has written many articles on how to manage on less. You can get free copy of her Ebook '15 Top Ways To Save Money' by visiting her website

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Financial Advisor Experience - 7 Questions You Must Ask!

A critical key to successfully selecting your financial advisor is know what questions to ask. The painful truth is most consumers of financial and investment planning services don't ask some of the most basic questions when finding, interviewing, and choosing the right financial advisor for their specific needs and financial goals. Rather they tend to be wooed by flashy signs on imposing buildings, fancy decor, ultra-slick TV ads and impressive titles. Choosing the wrong financial advisor however can lead to financially disastrous consequences for you and your financial security - and those flashy signs, smooth marketing campaigns, and embellished sounding titles are the least of what you as a consumer should be concerned with.

The problem stems from the Wall Street machine and their monstrous marketing budgets. Wall Street firms label their salespeople "Financial Consultant" or "Vice President of Investments" (I know, I had both titles at points in my career) - remarkable job titles to say the least, and most certainly comforting in nature to the consumer. They piece together emotionally provocative marketing campaigns with catchy slogans and striking logos. They advertise their spectacular investment products and financial planning services on TV, on the radio, and in the most popular trade magazines.

The sordid truth is the Wall Street machine engages in this "financial pornography" to wow and woo you, to impress you, and to give you comfort in the quality of their advice and value of their investment products before you even walk in the door. In reality, the flashy signs and chic titles mean nothing.

Checking your financial advisors background, credentials, philosophy, compensation and experience in the financial services industry can quickly weed out the "less professional" financial advisors - and effectively simplify your decision making process in finding the right financial advisor.

One of the most important "qualifiers" of a professional financial advisor is their level of experience in serving client's financial needs and helping them accomplishing their goals. Notice I didn't say "length of experience in the business". Length of financial services industry experience may mean little if anything, because a financial advisor may have 20 years of experience which may include years of nothing remotely related to serving clients financial needs.

There are plenty of financial industry jobs which may give the impression of real-life "in the trenches" client services experience, but in reality these jobs aren't much more than administrative, managerial, or sales in nature. To choose the right financial advisor, focus on asking the right questions, and expect thorough answers:
# How long have you been working directly with clients as their primary financial advisor?

# How long have you been recommending investment and insurance products?

# How long have you been actively and consistently creating financial plans for clients to help them achieve their financial goals?

# What is your training background, and where did you learn how to diagnose, manage, and solve your clients financial problems?

# How many years did you spend training for your position as a financial advisor?

# What firms have you worked for in the capacity of a financial advisor?

# How many written financial plans have you created for clients?

Those seven questions will garner the majority of information you'll need to make an informed decision on your financial advisor's experience level. But just what should their answers entail? In terms of acceptable financial advisor experience, I would argue the following:

A minimum 3 years of experience. Anything less is a threat to your financial future you can't afford to take. Financial advisor's can intern (or act as a para-planner) with more experienced financial professionals working with clients directly, and should do so for at least three years before taking on the primary role as your financial advisor. Given the volatility and uncertainty of current times, it's easy to make a case for 10 years or more of practical, real-world experience. You wouldn't lay on the operating table for open heart surgery knowing your doctor graduated from medical school yesterday would you?

A college degree. This is a new requirement for NAPFA (the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, registered financial advisors. While a college degree isn't the "be-all end-all", it shows dedication to training and increasing your knowledge early in life - a trait which commonly caries over throughout your career.

A CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (CFP®) or Chartered Financial Consultant® (ChFC®) designation. Both credentials show substantial dedication to being among the best in the financial services field. Both credentials are difficult to achieve and require ongoing continuing education to maintain. Both credentials illustrate the experience and training so vital to your financial success.

20 written financial plans. Many "financial advisors" don't do written financial plans (but many "financial advisors" are that only in title, and are actually salespeople in practice). Regardless of whether you need a written financial plan or not (not every client needs a written financial plan), your financial advisor should understand how to create one and have reasonable experience in doing so. You may not need that open heart surgery, but don't you want your cardiologist to have the experience requisite to making a wise decision when you have chest pain?

Experience is but one primary component of excellence in financial advice and superior client service. There are many other facets of a financial advisory practice that are important. In the end however, don't you feel more confident you'll be able to reach your financial goals knowing that this isn't your financial advisor's "first rodeo"?

Take the time, ask questions when you interview a financial advisor. Require and expect thorough and reasonable answers. Doing so will help you achieve confidence that you've found an experienced financial advisor able to deliver excellence in financial advice!

Greg Phelps is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER (TM) and Fee-Only Independent Financial Advisor in Las Vegas and Henderson, Nevada. With 14 years of financial industry experience, Greg is an accomplished financial advisor, author, and speaker. Through his employment with two of the largest investment banking firms on Wall Street - Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs, as well as serving as the Regional Manager of Wealth Management at the 5th largest accounting firm in the country - RSM McGladrey, he's consistently and ambitiously improved his skill and knowledge in the financial planning field. In addition to creating a Home Mortgage Loan utility for use by financial advisors with their clients, he strives to deliver exceptional financial planning advice and guidance in all areas relevant to his client, with a specialty focus in retirement financial planning.

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Save Money on Entertainment Tips For Avoiding Foreclosure

When the thought of facing foreclosure and possibility of losing your house runs through you mind, you probably are trying to come up with ways to avoid foreclosure, which means one thing: having the money to pay the mortgage bill. Every little penny matters and can help make the payments. If the possibility of foreclosure is on you mind, this is the time you want to learn the art of frugality.

To add to the list today you will be learning about how to save money on entertainment. If you learn the tips within in the article series you should be able to save thousands of dollars a years. If you are doing this; then you will help yourself avoid foreclosure not only this year, but for years to come. Just because you are trying to save money doesn't mean you have to lock yourself inside and never do anything -- what fun would that be and how long would it last?

Free concerts. Many towns and cities have free concerts you can go to in the summer; check out a local newspaper. It will usually have a list of free ones in the leisure section. It is fun and you get to be around other people, listening to good music.

Save on movies. Instead of going to a movies sign up for online movie sites and watch several movies a month for the same prices you spend at the theater. Plus you can eat popcorn and home and save yourself another 10 dollars and get twice as much.

Learn the happenings at your local library. A library is a good place to go when saving money. Here you can check out movies, CDs and books for free. Also they will sometimes have free events and book readings you can attend.

Take advantage of Tuesdays. Tuesdays are usually a slow day for businesses in general: restaurants offer food specials, museums are usually free and people want your business this day. So keep your eyes open for specials this day.

Board games. Purchases a few board games and having friends over for a game night is a good way to socialize and not spend much money. It can lead to hours of laughs and is better then hanging out at some noisy bar.

Take up running for your sport. Running is a free way to exercise and you get to see parts of your town you may not have been aware of before going out for a run. Instead of joining an expensive gym, do push ups and sit-ups at home, then go for a run. This right here can save you several hundred dollars a year.

So put some of these options into action and see how much money you end up saving a month. You would be surprised to find out how much it is. I know several people that go through half their paycheck in a week; if they learn to spend wisely they would have money in their savings account. You never know when you could loose your job or are in a financial hardship and it will be there for you to pay your mortgage.

LJ Adama writes articles on financial advice and foreclosure help. To get better ideas on how to stop foreclosure Or to learn about loan modification and foreclosure prevention methods please visit

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