Financial Advice For The Spending Addicts

Everyone has those moments when you casually stroll around a mall, then all of a sudden, you stop in your tracks, things around you blur, and the world slowly swirls to focus on the big red sign in front of your favourite store: SALE. Everything with a percent-off tag suddenly looks so irresistible and you cannot just let them fall into other people’s hands. These are times when we lose control of our spending. It may seem harmless, but feeling this way at every visit to the mall puts your income at risk and can prevent you from reaching more important financial goals. You need a few financial advice to control your spending to save your money from going down the drain.

The first thing you need to do is to set priorities. Make a list of the things you need and make sure to spend money on them first before other things. If you plan on going to the grocery store, for example, bringing with you a shopping list and sticking to it saves time and money but not putting unnecessary items in your cart. Asking yourself questions like “Can I afford this?”, “Do I need this?”, or “Have I checked if it’s cheaper somewhere else?” can also stop you from buying on impulse.

Next is to spend within your means. One way to do this is by patronising the use of cash over credit cards. Only bring with you the approximate amount of cash you need and leave your credit cards at home. In this case, no matter how tempted you are to buy something beyond your budget, you have no choice but to walk away. Think of credit cards as your “debt cards” because you are spending the bank’s money every time you swipe. Make sure your debts are a low as possible so you can pay for them fully on time. Every month you fail to pay makes the value of your debt higher.

The third tip is to make a budget diary. This can help identify the trends in your spending and monitor your total expenses. Have a daily limit on the maximum amount you can spend. If you go beyond it, review your purchases and check where you might have bought something you didn’t really need.

Constantly spending more than what you earn can lead you to a financial storm. Before you know it, you no longer have savings for your financial goals and all of what you earn goes to paying your debts. If you reach this point, you can always seek the assistance of a financial adviser to pull you out of crisis.

Debt Relief – 7 Best Financial Advice For 2008

In today’s time most people are in some sort of debt. Many people start to search for debt relief because the bills start to surpass the money they make at there job. Here is the list for the 7 best financial advice for 2008.

1. Never co-sign a loan for anyone. Why, it always ends up in court. It does not matter if it is your mother,father,brother,sister,aunt,friend etc. I have seen a lot of sisters and brothers taking each other to court lately for money problems. Don’t do it.

2. Try to buy items that have quality. Why, because it will last a lot longer than something that is cheap. You do not want to spend the little money you have buying the same item over and over again. Buying high quality items the first time around will help you save in the end. You will not have to buy that item for a very long time.

3. This is the number one reason why so many people need and look for financial advice. You must learn the difference between needs and wants. When you shop for food or clothing before you pull out your wallet, ask yourself do I really need this? If you answer,” I don’t need this but I want this,” there is your problem. When you are in debt and you need to make an important chose. You only should buy things you need, such as toilet paper, milk, bread etc. Do not waste money on things I call luxury items, such as a new dress, a new pair shoes or a new bowling ball. You’re wasting a lot of money.

4. Another really great financial advice that you can follow is to leave your credit cards at home. Only bring your bank card this way you can only spend what you have on your card. If you don’t have the money in your checking account you can’t buy it. This will stop you from spending too much.

5. Debt relief does not start with borrowing money. If you need more money it might be a good idea to get a second job if you need it. Many people I know work at two jobs. You can just work the two jobs until you pay down your bills to where you don’t owe anyone any money.

6. The best debt relief advice I can give you is not to gamble if you can help it. If you have to gamble only spend what you can afford to lose. This includes the Lottery also. I know people who spend almost there entire paycheck on lottery tickets.

7. If you have not thought about this last financial advice, you need to. Most people who become wealthy did it by owning there own business. It can be a work at home business also. If you make way more money than your 9 to 5 job then you are on your way. This has happened to many people.

Save Money by Comparing Cheap Car Insurance Quotes Online

If you love comparing cheap car insurance quotes online, raise your hand.

Okay, now that we have that out of the way let’s get to the real brass tacks. There are very few drivers who actually enjoy the process of assembling car insurance quotes and comparing them side-by-side. Yet at the same time, if you expect to get the best deal possible it is an absolute requirement. Simply believing the television announcer talking about how much you can save is not going to cut it. You need to do the work necessary to get the best price possible.

To get started, use a free quote tool like the one found on this website. Just enter your ZIP code and any other information it asks for, then sit back and wait for your results. It won’t be long before you have a list of companies you can begin comparing. While you’re sitting here, click on a couple of direct links that will take you to some of the most well-known car insurance companies, then fill out their quote forms as well.

Time to Compare

Some insurance companies will provide a full quote online while others would prefer to call and talk to you first. Either way, once you have three or four quotes in hand it’s time to sit down and compare them. The first thing you’ll want to look at is minimum liability coverage.

Minimum liability is a requirement in all 50 states so there’s no way of getting around it. You’ll probably find that among all the companies you’re comparing the rates for minimum liability are approximately the same. The only exception might be a policy that includes higher limits than what is mandated by law. If you don’t know what’s required by your state you can find that information online

After you get past the minimum liability you’ll then be looking at extra coverage’s such as collision insurance, comprehensive insurance, and gap coverage. Be sure to look at the limits and deductibles for each type of coverage. You might even do a cost-to-benefit ratio based on your annual deductibles.

Consider What You’re Willing to Lose

Finally, once you’ve crunched all the numbers in your comparison, consider how much financial risk you’re willing to assume. The last part of this equation usually is the kicker for most people in deciding the best policy for them. If you’re willing to lose a significant portion of the value of your car you might consider the cheapest policy with the least coverage. On the other hand, if you’re not willing to take a significant financial risk you’ll probably choose the most comprehensive policy with the highest price tag.

This is how comparing cheap car insurance quotes online works. It’s not a difficult process by any stretch of imagination, but it does require willingness on your part to go through the paperwork and run the numbers — regardless of how tedious it might be.

Getting Financial Advice – How to Make Sure You Get the Right Advice For Your Personal Finances

Once you have identified your goals, it is time to find out how to best go about achieving those goals. The financial services industry is a complex business, and there are few of us who could be expected to navigate its murky waters without help.

Perhaps the most important decision you can make when considering buying any financial product or service is the decision on the kind of advice you will seek out.

This is an area where some care is required. As complex as the financial services industry is, so too are the relationships of those who work within it, and you must be sure you understand the relationship between the person giving you advice and the product they are advising you on.

Always remember that the primary purpose of such advice is to help identify what your needs are, not to encourage you to purchase specific products. It may be that the best advice is to do nothing. Sometimes, an adviser will appear to go to a great deal of trouble on your behalf, in the hopes of encouraging you to feel obliged to stick with them – always remember you can say NO.

The rights you are entitled to in receiving advice vary according to the type of product. Check with the appropriate independent authority (as defined in various places in this guide, and in the Useful Information section) as to what your rights are with regard to a given product.

If you choose to buy a product without seeking advice, your rights are often less than they might be otherwise. In some cases, the attitude is ‘you didn’t seek advice, so it’s your own fault’. While it may be appropriate in some cases to go it alone, getting good advice is always worth the investment.

What may seem like advice may not be – do not mistake information for advice! If you buy from a direct mail shot, through a website or from a ‘direct’ company, you may be considered to have not taken advice, as far as your rights go. Marketing material is not objective and impartial – an obvious point, but worth restating.

Broadly, the kind of advice you can get falls into two categories: independent and tied. Both have their advantages and potential pitfalls.

Tied Agents

Tied advisers generally sell and advise on the products of just one company. They may or may not work directly for that company – sometimes they simply have strong ties and a good working knowledge of that company’s products. They may be able to get access to a good deal because of their exclusive relationship with the provider.

They can tell you which of the company’s products suits your needs. They have a responsibility to advise you honestly, and if none of the company’s products suit your needs they should tell you so. But always be aware that they are not necessarily trying to advise you on the best over-all product for you, but rather the best product that the company itself has to offer you. They should not tell you a product is appropriate for you if it is not, but sometimes what is ‘appropriate’ can be a slippery concept.

Tied agents almost always work on commission, though there is some movement towards having advisers tied to specific companies working for a flat fee. You may find it more comfortable to seek out one of these companies.

Citizen’s Advice Bureau

The Citizen’s Advice Bureau (Website: http://www.citizensadvice.org.uk) is an independent charitable organisation that focuses on giving advice on a whole range of subjects.

They are able to offer help in regards to issues such as debt, your rights, and general consumer issues. However, certain bureaux can offer specialist advice, often in conjunction with professional partners such as solicitors.

If things go awry, the CAB can help you to determine a way forward. They will help identify what your rights are, how to move forward with the issues, what kind of back up you can expect from various bodies etc.

The Financial Services Authority

The FSA is an independent non-governmental body that has statutory powers to regulate the financial services industry. Their funding comes from the industry itself, but the Treasury appoints the board. The FSA is guided by the Financial Service And Markets Act (Website: http://www.fsa.gov.uk), which came into force in June 2000.

One of their primary purposes is to secure the appropriate degree of protection for consumers. With this in mind they provide an excellent consumers guide that provides information on such things as consumer alerts, what to do if you have a complaint, a suite of comparative tables of similar financial services and even a firm check tool to find out if a company you are considering using are reputable and accredited.

Independant Financial Services

An independent advisor can nominally give you advice without you having to worry that they are pushing you towards a product that isn’t right for you. If they are not tied to using products from a particular company, they are free to look at the various products on offer, and make suggestions based on what is best for your particular circumstances.

They can give advice on a variety of products. If they give advice on investments such as pensions, life insurance, unit trusts and shares, then they and the company they work for must be authorised by the Financial Services Authority, and must abide by their code of conduct. Those advising on loans, most mortgages, non-investment (‘general’) insurance, term insurance or bank and building society accounts need not currently be authorised, though from 31st October 2004 all mortgage advisors will have to register and be authorised by the FSA. From early 2005, general and term insurance advisors will also have to be authorised.

If you want to check to see whether a person or firm is authorised by the FSA, you can use their Firm Check Service.

Some care has to be taken when taking such advice. While an advisor may not work directly for a particular company, they do often have relationships with companies (sometimes with a suite of companies). Often companies will offer bigger commissions or other such inducements to advisors in the hope that that will encourage them to promote their product.

The only truly independent financial advice you can get is when the advisor has no stake in your final choice of product. This can only come about if you get advice from one source, and buy your product or service from another with no connection between the two.

However, financial services often will prefer one product over another because those products genuinely are better than their competitors – the advisor’s reputations is founded on giving the right advice and achieving good results over time. In a sense, the advisor acts as a filter, discarding poorly performing or sub-standard products and focusing on the products that do perform.

When considering what advice to take, always establish what the point-of-view of your advisor is, and how that will affect the kind of advice they give.

You pay advisors in one of three ways: a one-off fee, a commission on any products bought, or a combination of the two. Always establish from the start what the deal is. The Financial Services Authority has decreed that from late 2003 all independent financial services must let you pay them with a flat fee if you wish to. This removes the temptation to recommend a product that pays them better commission.

Finally, it is always worth asking whether the advisor will be prepared to take a cut in their commission in order to give you a better deal (called a ‘commission sacrifice’). They won’t always agree, but if you don’t ask you certainly won’t get. Sometimes they will consider it worthwhile in order to get your custom.