Check Your Bank Statements Every Month, If You Don’t You May Be Losing Money In Unexpected Ways.

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It is important to watch over your own finances by looking at your bank statements. I have always checked my bank statements but maybe not quite as carefully as I should have!!

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Awhile back I got the dreaded letter from the bank saying you are overdrawn. I couldn’t believe it, I wondered what the heck did I do?

Then I opened it up and I was overdrawn by over a thousand dollars and I was real concerned.

I called the bank and they told me the $3000 dollar check that I had written was insufficient. Well I did not write a check for that amount but they assured me I did and told me where to.

I couldn’t believe I could do something so foolish but I called the company that I had written the check to and they said yep, that was what I wrote it for, and I was overpaid on my account.

Then we had to start the process of me getting the money back that I had overpaid, in the meantime I needed to do a quick transfer or I would have more insufficient checks.

After I got the check covered and started the return process of getting my money back I got to thinking I couldn’t have done anything that dumb.

So I called the bank and asked them if they were sure I had wrote it for that amount and she assured me they check those kinds of things, I still didn’t believe her so I went down there and said I wanted a copy of the check.

Low and behold I HADN’T been stupid and wrote a 300 dollar check for 3000. The company I wrote it to had encoded it wrong and the bank didn’t catch it.

So after apologies from the bank and their assurance they would fix things right up for me I called the other company back and asked them if they were sure I had made the mistake. She also assured me they always check these kinds of things. Then I said then how come I am holding the check and it is obviously written for only 300.00. She didn’t have much to say then and they assured me they would fix things right up.

In talking to her she said she just assumed the fault was mine because even if they had made the mistake one of our banks would have caught it, yeah right.

So while most of you would notice a 2700 difference like I sure did, we may not notice those pennies and nickels if we don’t check every month.

Because the only one looking after your account carefully will be you!!

Credit Cards For Bad Credit – Might Be Helpful

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Credit cards for bad credit can be the first step in taking the needed steps to restore your credit to good health.

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Applying for and getting credit cards for bad credit can actually end up being quite helpful to consumers if they are used correctly. The following are a couple of great reasons why getting a credit card especially for those with bad credit can be a wise idea.

Credit cards for bad credit can help people keep track of their spending habits. Most credit cards designed for consumers with not so healthy credit send detailed reports of what is being purchased with the credit card. This is really a fantastic way to find out exactly what you are spending your money on each month and then decide what can be cut out. More responsible spending habits are a great practice for consumers no matter what their credit history may be.

Credit cards for bad credit generally fall into two categories. The first is a credit card that has a maximum limit to the amount you can charge. For example a consumer with bad credit may be able to apply for a credit card with a $1000 limit. This can help the consumer from over spending and getting into a financial bind that they cannot get out of.

The second of the credit cards for bad credit is the secured credit card. These credit cards involve the consumer making a small deposit onto the credit card in order to use it. Some cards will increase your spending limit if good spending practices occur while others you can simply only spend what you put onto the card. Either way it is a great way to be responsible with your money and start rebuilding your credit.

These are just two of the great reasons as to why it is not a bad idea to look for a credit card tailored to those with bad credit. Credit cards for bad credit can be the first step in taking the needed steps to restore your credit to good health.

Curing Yourself from Leaky Wallet Syndrome

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It only takes a single financial weakness to empty your bank account, and few people look hard enough to shore up their financial mindset.

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Financial stewardship of a business empire or $100 bill require a particular psychology if they are going to survive over time in the same hands. The lack of this same psychology is why most lottery winners cannot hold onto the giant sums of money they receive; and I call this psychological mind-set the “Leaky Wallet Syndrome?

The difficulty with holding onto money is that it only takes a single weakness to lose it entirely. By weakness I mean that something has caught your eye that is so desirable that you will buy it spite of the fact that you cannot afford it. Whatever this purchase or payment may be, it psychologically reaches your personal threshold where having something right now is more important than having something tomorrow. There is a trigger that sets aside your normal, balanced decision-making with instant gratification. In my opinion, it is similar to dieting in that you have to eat food, but there are consequences if you continually eat even a little too much. Likewise you need to spend money, but there is a predictable consequence if you continually spend even just a little too much.

Let me list some of the common categories where people could have financial weakness: vacations, clothing, cars, shoes, personal electronics, charities, collections of any kind, books, Christmas gifts, watches, pets, jewelry, relatives, dining out, boats, hobbies and sports activities. And these are only single leaks in your wallet, if you have many of them your wallet could be in more serious trouble.

If you’ve never felt like you’ve had much “extra?money, you may not be aware of what your financial weaknesses may be. They may not show up until you receive a sudden windfall (annual bonus, tax refund, pay raise, inheritance, lottery winners), and you are not familiar with or prepared for your psychological pressure to spend money. If you want to know a few of your weaknesses, think about some of the items at the top of your list that you would buy if you had the money. How many of these items would seem like reasonable purchases to friends and family vs. how many would seem like ridiculous extravagances?

If you are still not sure if you suffer from Leaky Wallet Syndrome, your checking account may tell you: Do you have money leftover at the end of every month? Are you unable to payoff your entire credit card balance each month? Do you have any past due bills? Do you hide your checking account or avoid balancing it?

Let me give you a couple examples. An acquaintance of mine has three children, and in my view, is financially prudent in all matters except for one. And this single weakness has caused her to continually have trouble with high levels of credit card debt. She’s had this debt problem as long as I’ve known him and his only weakness is a particular self-help seminar. At least once a year, if there is room on her credit card, she attends one of these seminars and charges it all to a credit card. I don’t see her do anything with the information that she learns, and she feels it is so important, but I fear that she is sacrificing her family’s financial future.

I’d rather not see any more exposés about non-profit organizations spending their donations on supercomputers to analyze direct-mail campaigns instead of their stated cause. In another example, an acquaintance’s grandmother has a weakness for requests that she receives from left-wing political organizations. If a direct-mail piece lands in her mailbox, then they are guaranteed to receive some donation from her ?no matter that she can’t afford it. And like a good poker player sensing weakness, the fund raisers now flood her mailbox with donation requests.

Leaky Wallet Syndrome doesn’t only afflict individuals. A family-friend is a business turnaround consultant for private companies. He says that the majority of the time his services are called during the third-generation from the business founder. The founder builds a successful business and the second-generation coasts on this success, and is mentored by the founder. But by the third generation, the business is supporting so many family members on the payroll that don’t contribute value and family infighting prevents any efficiency or reform, that only Herculean effort from an outsider can save the business from so many forms of overspending.

You don’t have to look far from home to find Leaky Wallet Syndrome (has anyone seen my Ferrari? I mean my Ferrari keychain with a used Honda key?), but all the leaks in your psychology need to be plugged before you can successfully move toward your financial goals. And this effort also helps prepare you for any windfalls that would quickly leak from your wallet.

Give Yourself a Raise in 2006

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How would you like to earn more in 2006? Up to $4000 more? The answer is not by earning more, although that can help, it’s by cutting back on your daily expense.

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How would you like to earn more in 2006? Up to $4000 more? The answer is not by earning more, although that can help, it’s by cutting back on your daily expense. We work to earn a living. We live paycheck to paycheck. Never have money left over at the end of the month? Where does it all go? You can probably account for the majority of where you paycheck goes. Housing, car payments, credit card bills, food. But where do all those other dollars go?

You might be surprised how much cash you spend every day without really knowing it. Lets start with your drive to work. Long commute? How much gas do you use a week commuting? Are there ways you can reduce that? Car pool, public transportation? A job closer to home? Do you have to pay for parking? If you have to park in a downtown area anywhere in the county you are probably spending $8-$12 or more per day. Can you find a less expensive place to park even if it means walking a few extra blocks? A job where you don’t have to pay for parking can save you $100-$200 a month.

How about the morning coffee. $30-$40 per month? Do you bring your lunch or eat out everyday? $3-$10 a day is another $60-$200 a month. Don’t forget the snack out of the vending machine and your afternoon soda break. There is another $35 a month.

If you add it up you are looking at spending $300 a month or $3600 a year that it is costing you to work. These are just some of the daily expenses you may have, not including other work related expenses. Now divide $300 a month by how much you make per hour and you will know how many hours you need to work just to be able to work!

You don’t have to give up everything at once but if you start to cut back now when you get your next raise you will have even more money to put away. The easiest thing to do now is simply keep track of your daily expenses for the next few weeks. You may be surprised just how much you are spending. Once you know where your money is going then you can start to cut back.

Don’t get in the habit of going to the cash machine every few days. Once cash is in your hands, you will never know where it went. If you want to keep more of your hard earned dollars start to budget today. You will be glad you did.