Spring Cleaning Tips for Your Finances and Your Life

Spring Cleaning Your FinancesWho doesn’t love the onset of spring? There is something truly joyful about the dark ground giving way to green sprouts and brightly colored buds. It is almost impossible not to feel the need to start fresh and anew with unfolding of this bright and shining season. So, we all begin the Spring Cleanse.

Whether that cleanse is a thorough top to bottom scrubbing of your home, a reassessment of your health and wellness or the re-calibration of your finances, there can be deep satisfaction and deep value in going through this process on an annual basis.

Here are a few tips to help you get started on your spring cleaning activities.

Tidying your Finances

The IRS helps to make spring an ideal time for cleaning up your finances with federal taxes due on April 15. When you are pulling your annual tax records together, it is a good idea to reassess your budget and your savings plan for the year ahead. Use tools like a Retirement Savings Calculator to determine if you are saving enough for the future, and look for opportunities to save a little bit more. Continue reading Spring Cleaning Tips for Your Finances and Your Life

Women and Money Part 5: The Financial Confidence Gap

Women and MoneyWhen it comes to retirement saving, many women lag behind many men. Historically, that has been the case. The 2015 edition of Financial Finesse’s annual survey, The Gender Gap in Financial Wellness, offers more evidence of the problem – along with a few encouraging signs that women may be catching up. 1

Since 2011, during Women’s History Month, I have published an annual series entitled “Women and Money”  that summarizes how women are progressing in the areas of personal finances and money management (www.budgetwisefinancial.com/for-women-only).  This year I am focusing on retirement saving.  Based on the research provided by Financial Finesse, the median IRA and workplace retirement plan savings balance for a 45-year-old woman was $43,446. For a 45-year-old man, it was $63,875.1 Continue reading Women and Money Part 5: The Financial Confidence Gap

Simple Steps to Save Successfully During America Saves Week 2016

America Saves WeekMy last post talked about 2016 being the “Year of Money”.   I noticed an unprecedented number of conversations about saving money, getting out of debt, investing, and yes, even BUDGETS and life insurance!  Unlike the past, the difference this year is people are not just talking about it, they are taking action!  You may have seen all of the different Saving Challenges floating around the web.  Saving doesn’t have to be gimmicky, but whatever works to get people into action about savings.   Today kicksoff America Saves Week and BudgetWise Financial Solutions, LLC is a promotional partner again!   America Saves Week is a good time to access how you are doing with your savings goals. Continue reading Simple Steps to Save Successfully During America Saves Week 2016

5 Money Moves for 2016

5 Money Moves for 20162016 is “The Year of Money”!  Okay, not officially, but I proclaimed it.  Money, budgets and getting out of debt are finally vogue.  Everywhere I turn, money is included in the conversation, whether I am listening to a lecture or at a health fair.    My ears may be more attentive than most since finances are my profession, but I believe that there is a positive movement or awakening around improving and elevating your finances in 2016.

Discussing finances has not always been popular.  Many of us probably grew up in households where money was never discussed.  When I began BudgetWise Financial Solutions, I was told that no one would want to discuss “budgets” or “real money issues” and that I needed to find a way to wrap it up in a pretty bow.  Fast forward to today, Budgets are the New Sexy! 

Over the past decades, we have discussed mental, physical, and even relational health, now it’s time for financial health.  Financial wellness is at the center of them all.   If your money is right, everything else will be alright!  Well, maybe not everything, but it does increase the probability of a peaceful life, since money issues can be a key contributor to mental stress, physical illnesses, strained relationships, and employee productivity issues. Continue reading 5 Money Moves for 2016

Choosing Life Insurance is Like Choosing a Car

Life Insurance Awareness MonthSeptember is Life Insurance Awareness Month (#LIAM2015).  Apparently the life insurance industry has been educating the public on the importance of life insurance for 10 years. Maybe because of the prevalence of social media, the campaign is more visible now.  As a licensed insurance professional since 1995, I grew in my knowledge and appreciation for life insurance over the years and I am excited about this campaign.

I was introduced to life insurance while in college.  At Wayne State University, my major was Financial Investments and Money Markets.  I was more interested in the stock market and economics, but life insurance companies were all over me.  I accepted an internship to assist two successful insurance agents. Needless to say, I was not thrilled with the assignment of running proposals and illustrations. They wanted me to get licensed at that time.  I studied the material but I never took the exam.

Later on in my corporate career, I connected with a part time opportunity where educating the masses about term life insurance was the primary goal. I sold a few policies, but I still was passionate about investments. Continue reading Choosing Life Insurance is Like Choosing a Car