Don’t make these seven mistakes when dealing with debt collectors.


Here are seven mistakes people make when dealing with a debt collector. DOn’t you make them.

debt collectors, debt, debt colelctions,fair debt collections practices act

The number of complaints about debt collectors is on the rise. From 13,950 reported to the Federal Trade Commission in 2000, the number has ballooned to over 66,000 in 2005. And these are just the ones reported–the greater number of complaints go unreported. But this isn’t the worst; a significant number of complaints are coming from consumers who do not even owe the debt.

So what’s going on here? It is apparent that debt collection agencies are becoming increasingly competitive and that they are getting more aggressive in an effort to improve their bottom line. And to do this, they have to put more pressure on the one who owes the debt-the consumer, you.

What can you do if you are caught in the crosshairs of a debt collector? Enforce your rights. As a consumer, you have rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA.) These rights mean that you cannot be lied to, abused, or harassed when a debt collector is trying to collect from you. And these rights have teeth. When a debt collector violates the provisions of the FDCPA. when he or she violates the rights you have under the FDCPA, you can sue for damages and for attorney’s fees.

But when dealing with debt collectors under the FDCPA, don’t make the following four mistakes:

1. Not knowing your rights. You need to remember that you have rights even when you haven’t paid what you owe for whatever reason. We don’t have debtor’s prisons anymore and debt collectors can’t buy a license anywhere to have any kind of open season on anyone who is delinquent in paying debts. This is true because of those rights. So make sure you understand just what those rights are. You can’t claim them if you don’t know them.

2. Not keeping records. To be able to enforce your rights, you’ll need to keep some records. This will mean a phone log (the number of calls and when can both be violations of the FDCPA); notes from the calls (what they say to you may not be abusive, harassing or a misrepresentation); and all the letters they send to you (they must have the proper notices and may not confuse you about what you need to do) as well as the letters you send to them. All of these must be kept for you to better make your case.

3. Not responding on time. You have certain rights that must be exercised within a certain period of time or they are lost. (The right to verification information is one.) So be vigilant about any time limits. Respond when you need to and file suit on time–if it comes to that.

4. Avoiding the calls. Don’t avoid the phone calls either. It is only by dealing with the debt collector that any of your rights under the law may be exercised. And exercising those rights–for example, the all-important right of verification– might just make the problem go away. (If the collector cannot verify the debt, he or she cannot continue to collect it.) So it is better to take the call and talk.

In dealing with debt collectors, it also pays to be smart. So, for example, don’t also make the following three mistakes:

5. Not negotiating. Debt collection agencies most often buy the debt. And they buy it for less than you owe on it. Their profitability comes from getting you to pay more– and possibly a lot more– than they paid for it. So make sure you try to negotiate a lower figure. They just might accept it.

6. Ignoring the debt. Ignoring the debt is only going to cause more problems. If the debt collector understands that his or her efforts are not going to get you to pay, that may start the clock on any lawsuit they can bring on the debt. And that only gives the debt collector the advantage. Keep the advantage with you.

7. Paying by personal check. Paying by personal check gives the debt collector your account number and the name of your bank. That can create some problems with unscrupulous debt collectors who might be tempted to do something shady like setting up an electronic payment. (It’s been done.) And that isn’t good. But it also gives them information they can use if they want to enforce the debt through legal means. Why make it any easier?

If you are faced with any attempt to collect a debt, make sure you get all the information you can. If you do, you’ll be more able to enforce your rights–and they will be less able to intimidate you. Both of these come out on your side of the ledger sheet.

10 Tips To Improved Personal Budgeting


$Clip coupons. This is the single most important rule of personal budgeting. Why? Simply because a few minutes spent clipping coupons could end up saving you multiple dollars in the checkout line.

$Buy in bulk. If your favorite products are on sale, buying in bulk may cost you more at present but could end up saving you a lot in the future. Some good examples are items that do not have an expiration date, such as soap, shampoo, toiletries and other household items. Canned …

budget software, budgeting

$Clip coupons. This is the single most important rule of personal budgeting. Why? Simply because a few minutes spent clipping coupons could end up saving you multiple dollars in the checkout line.

$Buy in bulk. If your favorite products are on sale, buying in bulk may cost you more at present but could end up saving you a lot in the future. Some good examples are items that do not have an expiration date, such as soap, shampoo, toiletries and other household items. Canned foods, which carry a long expiration date, are also ideal for buying in bulk.

$Saving your change can be a great help in your quest for personal budgeting. You would be surprised how quickly change can add up and, even if it’s $50 or $100 per month, your coins can add up to some serious cash. Many people discard their coins or simply toss them around without thought, but saving them in a bowl or dish will help a great deal when it comes to personal budgeting.

$Put a portion of each paycheck into a savings count each week or month. Whether it’s a few dollars or several hundred, always make sure that you are putting aside some amount of money into a savings account. If possible, deposit 10-20% from each paycheck.

$Avoid impulse shopping. This type of buying is what ultimately leads to buyer’s remorse. In order to avoid it, think about what you want to shop for and make sure that you avoid any last minute additions unless they are absolutely necessary or you can afford them without being in a crunch.

$Shop the sale racks. Everyone enjoys sprucing up their wardrobe now and then so, when it comes time to add a few new pieces of apparel, stop by the sale rack for big savings. There’s nothing wrong with keeping a few extra dollars in your pocket, which can be later be used for life’s little essentials.

$Avoid using high-interest credit cards unless you can repay them within six months. Otherwise, you are more likely to get swallowed up with interest and end up paying for the original purchase several times over.

$If you do use a credit card for purchases, try to use one with an introductory APR or a regularly low interest rate. This could end up saving you big bucks every month and also in the future, which is one of the most important rules to personal budgeting.

$Request free samples. A number of websites, including and, offer customers the opportunity to request free product samples of certain items. Everything from skin lotions and shampoo to dog treats and household products are up for grabs to all who ask. In addition, many manufacturers offer free samples of new product releases directly through their own website.

$If you find yourself in increasing credit card debt, call the creditor and request to be placed on a hardship program. This type of program allows for lower interest and smaller payments for a specified amount of time. Depending on the creditor, it can be in effect for several months or until the balance is paid in full. This method will not only help your immediate personal budgeting, but will also give you additional financial freedom in the future when the debt is paid in full.

A Real-Time Way To Avoid Identity Theft


As identity thieves become more of a threat to individuals and businesses, many people wish they had someone–or something–to watch over and guard their valuable financial information.

A Real-Time Way To Avoid Identity Theft

As identity thieves become more of a threat to individuals and businesses, many people wish they had someone-or something-to watch over and guard their valuable financial information.

While most consumers can’t afford a financial bodyguard, many are taking advantage of a real-time identity management service that can potentially avert identity crimes.

I consider one service, Identity Sweep, developed with MyPublic Info ( and Affinion Group (www.affiniongroup .com), a leader in credit monitoring and identity theft, to be more proactive than any other. It may be the consumer’s best chance at avoiding identity-related criminal abuse. Identity Sweep protects consumer identities in three ways:

1. It includes a leading-edge identity fraud detection technology that scans billions of public records for suspicious activity associated with identity fraud, including attempts to create a synthetic identity. The service analyzes the suspicious activity to provide a risk score.

2. It searches Internet newsgroups, search engines, blogs and hundreds of thousands of chat rooms and Web sites looking for personal and financial information. It instantly notifies consumers by e-mail of any suspicious activity related to their personal information before the customer is victimized. This technology works faster than credit card and credit bureau monitoring services.

3. It scans online directories that list a consumer’s information and requests removal of that information to prevent abuse by telemarketers and identity thieves.

3 Things You Must Have to Make Lots of Money Fast


You can literally become a money sucking magnet and be among those who can brag of making money fast. These principles are easy to follow and very effective, granted that you follow them

make money fast, make money faster

Where ever you are presently in your life you can begin to make large amounts of money very fast if you understand a few simple principles. Despite what anyone may tell you these principles of generating money fast do work.

These principles are not difficult but in order to understand them you must process them. You must take the time to give them some thought, until the thought becomes a part of your very being.

How to make money fast is one of the hot topics on everyone’s mind. Most people will tell you that claims of making fast money is a hokes. Those are the very people who believe that only hard work and struggle can create money. However despite the hard work, the concept of fast money is still not part of the equation. After all if you are working very hard you are unlikely to be making the sort of fast money that you would dream of.

I can tell you from first hand experience that fast money does not come through hard work. If you are marketing your business or interested in accumulating more money struggling will only kill your changes of getting money in a fast and easily way.

–The First Step–

The first think you need in order to make fast money is to have a clear goal. How much do you want? You would be so surprise at how many people want more money but don’t have a clear idea as to how much they want.

Without a clear goal your desire is just a wish, it is not concrete. Be specific about how much money you want and by when you would like to have it.

–The Second Step?

The very next step is to take inspired action. Inspired action comes from the universe as a nudge. It’s the perfect idea, job or business that will help you in getting your goal accomplished.

It makes no sense trying to do something that your neighbor or your coworker tried. What is an ideal opportunity to make fast money for them may not be ideal for you. Besides your goals are unique and the opportunities that are rightfully aligned for you are rightfully suited for you to reach your goal in the time that you desire.

–The Third Step?

The third most powerful step is to have a clear and bright vision of your goal. This is where most people fail. Most people get caught up in fear and worry that their goal will not be able to materialize and spend lots of wasted time holding back on their actions.

How many times have you been offered a great idea which you may have promised to do but allowed your fears to get in the way?

You must be able to hold your vision in such a way as to feed it with your own personal powerful intention that your vision will materializes money a lot faster than usual.

Many people who understand the power of holding a clear vision have gone on to make money very fast again and again. Those are the ones who deeply understood the precise way. With a little time and your deep desire you can literally suck money to you faster.

Over the years I can honestly say that I have tested all these theories and without fail they work in generating money faster than if I did not practice these methods.

Don’t Drop the Retirement Ball


Juggling may be entertaining, but the average person may not have the concentration to keep the balls in the air. Yet half of Americans in their prime savings years juggle their retirement money in three or more accounts, according to Fidelity Investments estimates.

Don’t Drop the Retirement Ball

Juggling may be entertaining, but the average person may not have the concentration to keep the balls in the air. Yet half of Americans in their prime savings years juggle their retirement money in three or more accounts, according to Fidelity Investments estimates.

Whether they are 401(k)s from previous jobs or forgotten IRAs, these multiple accounts can burden investors with several statements and potentially more account fees. Most importantly, scattered accounts may make it more difficult to keep a diversified investing strategy on track.

“It’s natural to think that multiple accounts may automatically diversify a portfolio, but that’s not necessarily true,” says Cynthia Egan of Fidelity. “In fact, managing a mix of stocks, bonds and cash across numerous accounts can be confusing and may make it harder to detect risks to your portfolio.”

For example, some investors unknowingly hold the same security in several accounts, which could result in a big hit to the portfolio if that stock price falls. Identifying how much is “too much” is simple with one view of all your retirement money.

Merging multiple accounts into a single Rollover IRA can make it easier to manage your savings, allowing you to easily review your holdings and quickly make adjustments. Here are three more tips to help simplify your portfolio:

1. Find them all. Even if you have to spread your statements across the kitchen table, identify all of your accounts that can be consolidated, including forgotten IRAs and old 401(k)s.

2. Mix it up. We’ve all heard that while diversification doesn’t ensure a profit or guarantee against loss, an age-appropriate mix of stocks, bonds and cash is the key to potentially better long-term performance. Make it easy with a lifecycle fund that is automatically rebalanced by a professional as your target retirement date approaches.

3. Keep it moving. Just like your regular trip to the dentist for a preventive checkup, be sure to review your portfolio annually to make sure your overall retirement strategy stays on track.

Fortunately, there are many resources available to help you manage your retirement savings. At the end of the day, however, consolidating retirement accounts into a single IRA account can help you more easily evaluate your retirement assets, develop a more thoughtful retirement strategy and monitor your investments to build your portfolio – making it easier to keep your eye on the retirement ball.

Budgeting: The Critical Flaw That Causes Most Budgets to Fail


Discusses the failure of most budgets to account for variable or irregular expenses. Explains the monthly averaging approach necessary to offset this problem.

budgets, personal finance, expenses, savings

Budgeting. It’s a word we’re all familiar with. Everyone knows what a budget is, right? Yet how many of us actually make and stick to a solid monthly budget? The truth is that most of us start out with the best of intentions, but an unexpected expense comes up and busts our budget. Then we give up and go back to juggling our finances and worrying about having too much month left at the end of the money. However, if you are striving to create a budget for the purpose of systematically paying off your debts or to start a savings and investment program, then it’s critical to develop a workable and realistic budget.

So what’s the problem? Why do most of us fail at the simple task of creating a budget so we can live within our means? The simple truth is that most budgets don’t work because they fail to account for irregular or variable expenses. Everyone knows how much their rent or mortgage payment is. It’s the same amount month after month. If your rent is $1,000 per month, that’s a no-brainer. The same is true of many other fixed expenses, such as auto loan payments, cable TV subscriptions, insurance premiums, and so on. It’s easy to budget for these expenses because the amounts don’t change from one month to the next.

Besides expenses that are the exact same figure each month, there are numerous types of expenses that vary a little from one month to the next, yet we still have a pretty good idea what we spend each month. A good example is our grocery bill. Most of us have a fairly clear picture of how much we spend each week at the supermarket. So, we can insert a realistic figure into our budget-in-progress and not be too far off the mark. The amounts may go up or down slightly each month, but we usually know the range we’re dealing with. Other examples of this category include telephone bills, utility bills and gasoline (when prices are stable, that is).

The real culprit in busted budgets is the variable or irregular expense. How much will you spend on car repairs over the next 12 months? What about medical bills? Home maintenance costs? It seems that bills for these types of expenses hit us out of left field, and there goes our budget. Before long, we’re using food money to cover a new set of tires for our car and the whole budget comes crashing down.

So what’s the solution? There is no perfect answer to this problem. But we can come to a close approximation by using the simple technique of monthly averaging. Start by gathering 12 months’ worth of checkbook registers, bank statements, and credit card statements. Write down (or enter into a spreadsheet) how much you spent each and every time your money went toward something that was not a fixed expense. Group these expenditures into categories, such as auto, home maintenance, clothes, etc. Don’t try to break it down too far. What you want is a handful of useful categories. Then keep listing each of these expenses under their relevant categories for the full 12-month period.

When you are done with this exercise, you should have an excellent idea of your total annual expenditure for these variable expenses. For example, if you add up all the automobile repair or maintenance expenses for the year, and the figure comes to $1,200, then divide by 12 to get the result of $100 per month average. That’s how much you need to allow in your monthly budget in order to build up enough reserves to handle an auto repair when it comes up. Again, this method isn’t perfect, because an expense may come up that exceeds your estimated outlay, but at least it takes into account a closer approximation to reality than simply guessing, or worse, ignoring auto maintenance in your budgeting.

The trick here is to set up a separate savings account in which to set aside these “extra” funds. Let’s say the “extra” $100 goes into the savings account for six months, and then you get hit with an auto repair for $400. You pull the money from your $600 savings that was purposely built up for this type of expense. This way, you’re automatically setting aside amounts intended to cover each type of irregular expense that you encountered over the previous year.

Most people are shocked when they perform this 12-month analysis of irregular expenses, and it immediately becomes clear why their budget is always breaking down. This technique leads to the discipline necessary to recognize that “extra” money is seldom really extra. If we think we have our bills covered, and there is some cash burning a hole in our pocket, our tendency is to spend it on something fun. But if we know that there really is no cash left over, because we haven’t yet set aside the extra $100 needed to keep our car on the road, then we’ll be less inclined to spend it on pizza, beer, and movies.

Budgeting can be successfully accomplished by this technique of monthly averaging, especially if we consistently apply it year after year. As we move forward, our understanding of our true expenses becomes clearer and clearer, and we are no longer surprised by the occasional unexpected expense.

The best way to implement this approach is to set up a regular savings program, where the amount you’re setting aside to cover irregular expenses gets automatically deducted from your paycheck and forwarded to your savings account. If the money is deducted from your paycheck before you even see it, then you will be less tempted to skip this critical part of the budgeting process, and you will greatly increase the chances of making a budget work over the long term.

Experts Lend A Hand With Tips On Lending Money


The smallest bills can cause the biggest stress, especially at the end of the month when due dates seem to come faster than paydays.

Experts Lend A Hand With Tips On Lending Money

The smallest bills can cause the biggest stress, especially at the end of the month when due dates seem to come faster than paydays. When the financial outlook is uncertain, many choose to reach out to friends and family for short-term help.

Lending money to friends is a common practice and although people often have the best of intentions, it can sometimes result in sticky situations. According to a recent study by IPSOS and PayPal, 71 percent of Americans have loaned money to family members and friends.

It may seem harmless to help a friend make a car payment or assist a co-worker going through a divorce who just needs “a little help.” But a temporary crisis isn’t always so temporary-and can quickly become an uncomfortable situation if the lender has to ask for the money to be repaid. As easy as it is to lend to someone you know well, it can be just as hard to pester them to pay you back.

According to etiquette experts Kim Izzo and Ceri Marsh, co-authors of “The Fabulous Girl’s Guide to Decorum”and “The Fabulous Girl’s Guide to Grace under Pressure,” money issues between friends and family members are difficult because money is inherently an emotional situation for both parties.

In fact, according to the survey, 57 percent of Americans have seen a relationship end because one person owed the other money. Everyone wants to be a good friend, but no one enjoys feeling like someone is taking advantage of their generosity, say Izzo and Marsh.

“But money lending can be done right,” continues Izzo. “We recommend setting some simple ground rules when considering the possibility of lending money. These ground rules can take some of the stress out of lending to friends and family, and even make it into a positive experience.”

Marsh and Izzo offer several tips for conducting successful financial transactions with friends and family:

• If you’re loaning money to someone close to you and if you’re financially able, consider making it a gift rather than a loan. If not, make it clear you expect to be paid back.

• To make collecting a debt easier and more comfortable, consider using a service called PayPal. This makes it possible to send and receive payments online. With PayPal, you can send e-mail reminders to the borrower. The lender can then get the money back instantly via email.

• Never co-sign a loan or credit card application for someone else without clear, written parameters, and always maintain a business-like environment.

• Don’t lend beyond your means. Only lend money that you don’t need back immediately so as not to ruin your credit or your relationship with the borrower.

“It’s possible to help out a friend or relative in a way that won’t compromise a relationship, while still making sure you’re not left empty-handed,” says Marsh. “Be fair with both the borrower and your own bank account, and hold to your agreements. This will help keep both the relationship and your wallet intact.”

Debt: Self-Help or a Credit Lawyer?


“Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen pounds nineteen shillings and sixpence, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds and sixpence, result misery? Mr. Micawber’s remarks on debt remain just as true today

debt,self-help,credit lawyer

“Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen pounds nineteen shillings and sixpence, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds and sixpence, result misery? Mr. Micawber’s remarks on debt remain just as true today, perhaps more so with the explosion of credit cards, as they did when Dickens wrote them. We might, like Mr. Micawber, indulge in wishful thinking and try to convince ourselves that “something will turn up?

In reality, though, we all know deep down that sooner or later debt problems have to be faced, the sooner the better. Nowadays we might not face debtors’ prison for consumer debt, but we should not fool ourselves either into thinking that credit repair or filing for bankruptcy are easy options. Whichever you choose, self-help or credit lawyer, the road ahead will be a long one. It’s well to face this fact at the outset.

Presenting the options for dealing with debt as a stark choice between self-help and legal relief is a bit misleading. In truth, whether you seek a lawyer or not, you still need to help yourself by acknowledging bad spending habits and poor budgeting management. You must bite the bullet, and the first very important step to take is to take responsibility for the situation you find yourself in. Second, if you want to avoid the courts, you’ll need to set up a budget plan which, unlike lawyers’ fees, will cost you very little. For a small fee you can enlist the services of nonprofit organisations which will be only too willing to give you assistance in drawing up a plan. You don’t have to feel you’re fighting a lone battle.

But perhaps you’re a natural self-helper, and you want to get yourself out of your financial mess by using your skills to draw up a budget plan yourself. Software programs are now readily available which will enable you to begin budgeting your money with a view to repairing your credit. Being proactive is the best way to build solid foundations for fiscal fitness in the short and long-term: you are retaking control of your life. Remember: your flexible friend will only keep you fit to live beyond your means. If you want to keep fiscally fit, stick rigidly to living within your means and the strict discipline imposed by a budget plan.

Living within your means sounds very laudable, but real self-help should mean living below your means, well below. Why? Simply because you’re looking to repair your credit as soon as possible, and you can achieve this by paying off as much as you possibly can on all your debts simultaneously. Paying off a small amount monthly to each company you owe money to is a good start, showing both commitment on your part and a safeguarding of your position to ensure you don’t face court proceedings. Some debts, however, gain interest and you’re therefore paying off less of the principal each month. Increase your monthly repayments and you put yourself in a good light with your creditors as well as working towards an earlier credit repair.

Living below your means: sounds a good idea but how is it done? Realistically, If there’s no pain there’s no gain. Changes in your lifestyle have to be made, some quite radical, particularly if your debts are substantial. Of course, you will have got rid of your credit cards and curtailed your spending habits, but you’ll need to go much further if you’re to count as a serious self-helper. Raising your income by taking on another job is one option. Selling your home and moving into rental property is another. These potentially are very stressful lifestyle changes, but the alternative of bankruptcy could hardly be described as stress-free.

You might feel, though, that filing for bankruptcy is the only way forward and that your debt situation is intractable. At this point hiring a credit lawyer might seem necessary to protect your interests, particularly if your debt is very large and your case complex. Before we look at the pros and cons of taking such action, it’s worth pointing out that new laws have recently been introduced which make qualifying for bankruptcy anything but a foregone conclusion. On current trends, we’re likely to reach the stage quite soon when it will become very difficult for anyone to file for bankruptcy.

This tightening of the bankruptcy laws in the US seems to contrast with the apparent liberalization of UK bankruptcy law. In the UK the period of a bankruptcy has shortened from three or two years to one year for ‘honest’, first-time bankrupts. For serial bankrupts, and others who have contributed to their plight through neglect or fraud, the period of bankruptcy has been lengthened to a minimum of five years. So, for first-time bankrupts, the aim is to encourage financial institutions to give first-timers a fresh start by easing credit restrictions post-bankruptcy. By contrast, serial bankrupts are made to face the seriousness of their delinquent actions.

But returning to the US, the question that tightening the rules on bankruptcy qualification throws up is, do you go for self-help or a credit lawyer? Opt for self-help and you could be doing yourself the best possible favor. If the law is going to make it increasingly difficult to file for bankruptcy then there seems no alternative but to implement a budget plan as outlined earlier. When the going gets tough, and tougher, the tough get going.

On the other hand, opt for a credit lawyer and you could benefit from an experienced attorney’s expertise to secure your bankruptcy qualification. Credit lawyers would argue their experience and detailed knowledge of bankruptcy law could prove invaluable in matters like reaffirmation agreements where you’ll be able to keep your residence or automobile by continuing to make payments on your home or car. This is possible because they are secured loans. The distinction between secured and unsecured loans, and its importance to the debtor, is well appreciated and used to best advantage by experienced bankruptcy lawyers.

So, self-help or credit lawyer? On balance self-help, because, as the person who created the problem, you must utimately be the one to restore your fiscal fitness. With the increasingly draconian nature of bankruptcy law self-help can only assume greater importance. As a last resort, though, seeking legal counsel might best protect your interests. But only you hold the key to keeping your annual expenditure down to “nineteen pounds nineteen and sixpence?

Cash Loans: Getting Urgent Help is Easy Now


Through cash loans, the borrowers can take up money for their needs without pledging any collateral with the lenders. Certain conditions are required to be fulfilled to get approval for these loans. online research helps in getting low rate deals.

Payday Loans, Cash Loans, Payday Advance Loans, Quick Cash Loans

Money may be procured if we are in dire need of money but the time constraint is always creating problems for us. If you are in need of money in small amounts and need it quickly too, then the best way to tackle your problems is to take up Cash Loans. With these loans, the borrowers are able to deal their cash issues well and quick.

Borrowing money for urgent needs may be more than a requisite for the person. It may be an urgent situation as some urgent situations may have to be dealt like urgent car or home expenses, credit card repayments, urgent bills etc. So to borrow these loans, the borrowers have to just fill in an application form and make sure that the following requirements are fulfilled:

* He should be over the age of 18 years and be a citizen of the UK

* He should be having a current bank account in his name and it should be at least 6months old

* His employment should be regular since the last 6months

* His place of residence should be regular since the last 3 months

The borrower’s account is credited with the approved amount in less than 24 hours of application if all the conditions are fulfilled. The borrowers may use the amount depending upon their need and the amount may range between

Building An Emergency Fund – A Vital Part of Financial Planning


None of us have the ability to foresee the future or predict the hurdles which lie ahead of us. This makes building an emergency fund a financial priority. Building an emergency fund is healthy for your financial well being, since you’re rarely given advance notice of a setback or an accident which will keep you out of work for an extended period. It is also a safety net that can save you from bankruptcy or severe financial hardships in the event of an unexpected change in your income or expenses.

Personal Finance, Planning, Financial Planning, Emergency Fund, Rainy Day Fund, Worst Case

None of us have the ability to foresee the future or predict the hurdles which lie ahead of us. This makes building an emergency fund a financial priority. Building an emergency fund is healthy for your financial well being, since you’re rarely given advance notice of a setback or an accident which will keep you out of work for an extended period. It is also a safety net that can save you from bankruptcy or severe financial hardships in the event of an unexpected change in your income or expenses.

Housing a small rainy day fund should be a vital part of an individual’s financial goals. This is of high importance if you don’t already have readily available funds in your account for covering any unanticipated expenses. They provide financial security because they give you funds to fall back on if you become ill, or if you or your spouse loses your job, you incur large medical bills, or have an unexpected large bill such as a major car or home repair. You do not want to end up in a situation where you have to buy daily necessities on credit and end up payments on groceries you bought two years back on credit, with a further 10-18% interest on it.

Saving your money in an small account for emergencies is definitely a better alternative to taking a loan or cashing in your long-term investments. If you take a loan, there is the additional burden of paying interest. Encashment of your investments before maturity means not only will you lose out the interest, but also some part of the original investment. This will also set you back significantly in your overall financial plan.

Success at building an emergency fund depends on consistency of saving money on a regular basis, and resisting the urge to dip into this rainy day fund for non-emergencies. This money should be kept separate from the general savings account. Otherwise you will be tempted to dip into these monies even if you simply run over your budget at a certain point. A substantial part of this emergency fund account should be invested in low risk funds. This ensures that your investment does not lose its value in case you need the money. Also, it should be extremely liquid, to give you access to the cash easily and quickly if you need it.

The size of the special savings account will depend on your personal situation. People often keep three to six months?salary in the reserve. But you will have to decide on an appropriate amount based factors such as your dependants and fixed monthly expenses.

If you are single with no obligations, and have a reliable support system of friends or relatives during a financial crisis, you might not need a substantial amount stashed in this fund. This is opposed to someone who needs to pay nursing costs for his aging parents and supporting a young family. The more people you support, the more likely you are to have unexpected or unplanned costs.

While making a decision about an emergency fund, you should also take into account the degree of difficulty you’d have in finding a new job if you lost the present one. In case of a two-income household, the contribution of both parties should be weighed while calculating how much you should keep aside.

You may not be able to gather your emergency fund money together at once. Treat it as a financial goal and add to the kitty over time. If you get a tax refund, put it in your special rainy day account. Maybe a part of the bonus at work!