Author Archives: mimin

Tips for ATM Safety

usATMs and debit cards offer quick access to your money when you’re on the go. Most of us have come to rely on the convenience they provide, but it’s important to use caution to keep ourselves and our finances safe. To protect your identity and ensure your personal safety, it makes sense to exercise caution when using an ATM. The tips below are meant to make you aware that although rare, ATM crime can happen.

Follow these tips to help keep you and your money safe!

    • Protect your ATM card as if it were cash. Report lost or stolen cards immediately.

 

    • Safeguard your Personal Identification Number (PIN). Don’t give your number to anyone; don’t write your PIN on your card, avoid using numbers that are easily identified (birth date, etc.).

 

    • Try to use ATMs with which you are familiar. Choose well-lit, well-placed ATMs where you feel comfortable. If you need to use an ATM late at night, ask a friend to accompany you.

 

    • Before approaching the ATM, scan the surrounding area. Avoid the ATM altogether if it is too dark to see, isolated or looks unsafe. If there are bystanders loitering in the area, go to another machine or come back later.

 

    • Be prepared to conduct your business as soon as you reach the machine. Have your ATM card ready in your hand. Do not dig through a purse, bag or wallet in front of an ATM or while you are in line. Secure your money immediately after the transaction. Count your money later, not at the ATM.

 

    • Use your body to shield the screen and keypad before entering your PIN. Make sure other individuals in line stay a reasonable distance from you while you’re performing your transaction.

 

    • Do not allow anyone to distract you while you are at the ATM. Be cautious if strangers approach you or try talking to you – even if your card is stuck or you’re having trouble with your transaction. If someone takes interest in your transaction, leave the area and report the suspicious behavior to the police.

 

    • Never leave your receipt in the ATM. Discarded ATM receipts are a primary source of identity theft and account fraud. Shred receipts before discarding them.

 

    • If you are using the ATM at night make sure there is nothing compromising your personal safety like overgrown bushes or poor lighting.

 

  • Be wary of an ATM scam called “skimming, where thieves attach electronic devices to the ATM that are designed to capture your card information and PIN. If an ATM card reader appears unusual compared to other ATMs, use another ATM.

Remember, if your ATM card is lost or stolen; contact your credit union immediately. They will take the proper steps to ensure your finances are safe and assist you in getting a new card.

3 Things You Must Overcome in Order to Make More Money

cgThe number one thing to know is this: More and more Americans are rightfully concerned about wage and income disparity but few see that government has any real solution to this concern. This is a step in the right direction because although many members of low-income households work heroically and waveringly at very low wages the “Census Bureau data shows that for every hour worked by those in a low-income household, those in a wealthy household toil 5 hours.”(I) Furthermore, “6 out of 10 households have no one working at all.”(ii)

Secondly, according to the latest Quantitative Analysis of Investor Behavior (QAIB) “The average investor in a blend of equities and fixed-income mutual funds has garnered only a 2.6% annualized rate of return for the 10-year time period ending December 31, 2013. The same average investor hasn’t fared any better over longer time frames. The 20-year annualized return comes in at 2.5% while the 30-year annualized rate is just 1.9%.”(iii)

Thirdly, checking the market performance as of the date of this writing, December 10, 2015, CNN Money reports that the S&P 500 Index is trading 0.56% higher than it closed yesterday. The year-to-date change is -0.12% and the 1 year change is currently -1.59%.

So here are the 3 things you must overcome in order to make more money:

1. You will need to overcome by working harder or longer, maybe both.

2. You will need to overcome by depending more on guarantees, less on market returns.

3. You will need to overcome by avoiding market volatility in order to keep more of what you make.

The first of these is easy enough to overcome. There are literally thousands of things that you can do, if you are willing, that will create more income for you. Saving at least 10% of that income will put you on track to becoming wealthier regardless of where you are today on the income scale. This isn’t rocket science. It is called work ethic. Being willing and ready to trade your skills, knowledge and time for money so that you can set aside money that can begin to work for you, instead of you always having to trade your time for money, is the most important thing in making more money.

Next, forget about putting your hard earned money into the market in hopes of it making you more money. Statistics document, as the QAIB research above proves, that this model of saving hardly keeps pace with inflation. That means you could save all your money in things like 401(k)s, IRAs, Roths, Mutual Funds, Securities and Bonds and end up with less value down the road than what you started with initially.

Finally, overcoming or avoiding market volatility is critical if you are planning on keeping more of the money that you and your money can create for you. Consider this based on the CNN Money report above. If you had entered the market this morning you would be making slightly over ½ of a percent on your position. Of course, you would have to pay the fees to make the trade either to enter, exit or both and that means you would have lost money today in the S&P 500. But let’s say you entered the market on the opening bell the first day of trading this year. That means you would have lost the trading fees plus you would have lost another 1/12th of a percent just because of market volatility. And if you had entered the market 1 year ago today then your losses would include all the fees plus an additional -1.59%.

Logic tells us that saving in places that provides guaranteed returns and opportunity to participate in market returns without assuming the risk that is inherent in the volatile market place while having complete access without fees or penalties to the capital saved is more reliable than what the average investor is accomplishing with their money today. That is why The Perpetual Wealth Code™ is based on overcoming these 3 things that most investors are plagued with in their portfolio. Guaranteed, Available, Manageable Equity is the GAME that you need to win in order to make and keep more money.

Holding on to Our Money

sddWhy is it so hard to manage money and hold on to it? How can we save more and spend less? It has become an issue to make and save money.

The world is geared in such a way that it’s difficult to hold on to our money…

Everyone is after money – our money, their money, everybody’s money – because of greed and because they never have enough. They spend years in higher education, in colleges and universities, to master the art of finding ways to get our money with such ease. They have become experts in their field and their field is to find more ways for our money to escape from our wallets faster and faster.

The funny thing is, there is a collaboration between the financial institutions and the commercial world to create more wants than needs. People, in general, are innocent and ordinary. The majority work hard to try to have a life without paying too much attention to the details… and that is when it happens…

I remember when banks were not so greedy. They made it easy and a pleasure to bank with them. Now it’s all about them making more and more billions in profits every year. They charge for every little detail, and we are not done yet, because they have their geniuses looking for ways to get every hard-earned dollar from our bank accounts into theirs-the latest being that, with every transaction at the teller, if you want a receipt, there is a charge of one dollar.

The government raises taxes, and if you don’t have a good accountant, you are doomed. There is a well-organized plan to find ways for our money to fly into someone else’s nest. Therefore, people will never get out of debt unless they get smart, spend less, and save more. As the saying goes, “A penny saved is a penny earned.”

How about our young ones? Do you think there is more we can do to educate them about money matters, to help them manage their resources, money, time, and so on? I don’t think we do enough to prepare our young people for life and its money challenges!

We teach them history, the arts, geography, economics, and so on. Please, don’t get me wrong, these subjects are important, but I feel it’s more important to teach them practical and smart ways to deal with their personal finances, starting from when they’re young and into their teen years.

It would make such a huge difference in their lives. It would determine how successful they are going to be… or not.

But here is the question: Who is responsible for this task-the school system or the parents? Why do we as parents depend on others, such as schools, to ready our children for life? Isn’t it our duty to make this happen?

Here is my opinion: Parents care more for their children than anyone else does; therefore, they are responsible for teaching their children about personal finances if the school doesn’t do it. Remember, economics is not the same as personal finance. We have to teach young people to spend less than what they make, a lesson that can prove to be as valuable as gold if it’s put into action! It’s a very simple lesson but a very important one.

I wish I knew more about money management. I wish someone had told me early in life about money and how very important it is to save more and spend less… to pay myself first and then spend the rest with no guilt. Life will never be without its bills and expenses. It is what it is, and nothing is free… well, I’m trying to think what things are free-not too many! The air we breathe is still free, but I don’t know for how much longer!

Money matters. Let us be wise about it so we can have it in times of need!

Modern Financial Advising For Beginners

trThe Internet is a testament to the fact that there are DIY approaches to practically every need for which one might have traditionally requested another’s assistance. Financial planning is no exception. Those looking to start investing in careers often tend to believe they are capable of creating their own success. While individual success is not completely unheard of, it is rare. Services to expand financial gain are no longer exclusively for the wealthy. In fact, according to many experts, hiring help could drastically improve one’s chances of coming out on top financially in the long run. Still, many find it difficult to initiate the process. Here are some tips from a seasoned financial advisor for beginners.

Admitting It Is The First Step

Like with any significant self-improvement, determining whether or not you need assistance is the key to financial success. Unless you are a natural at portfolio management, you probably could benefit from the help of an expert. Deciding to allow someone to help create your monetary triumph is crucial. There is no shame in needing their expertise, especially when it has become so easy to do so affordably. Many modern companies have significantly lower minimum account requirements than previously held by traditional firms. Financial advisors have never been more accessible to new investors.

Decide to Invest

According to a seasoned financial advisor, the heart of financial planning can be summed up pretty simply: “You either have a plan, or you don’t.” Those without a specific approach often fail. After recruiting assistance, dedication to investment is crucial. Realize that attention to the status of your current portfolio is an investment into the status of your future portfolio. Decide that you are going to take a guided, methodical path to a more comfortable financial end. Sporadic, overly passive investment approaches are common pitfalls of individual investors who fail when attempting to go it alone. A solid strategist will encourage your desires by motivating you to remain dedicated to your plan. Remember-the sooner you begin planning, the longer your plan has to succeed.

Focus On The Future; Be Aware of The Present

The end goal of investment is the future increase. Trends in finance are constantly changing. A financial advisor can be of great assistance in this area, being more knowledgeable of these changes in a way that will increase the probability of multiplying your returns. Vigilant monitoring of the current climate is vital. Be sure that you have enlisted the assistance of someone who is dedicated to such surveillance. While your strategy might not necessarily always be comfortable, keep in mind that your future will be.

With the widened availability of financial advisors, it is more realistic than ever to begin investing. Regardless of the account size bracket into which you fall, there is undoubtedly a service for you. Realize that hiring a partner and having a plan are ways of presently managing your future. In the wise words of an experienced CFP, “The first step in planning is deciding to have one.”

What Traits Do Most Successful Financial Advisors Have In Common?

esExperts in the financial industry usually have a lot in common. They are morning people, number-crunchers, and they all seem to really like coffee. What makes you be a successful financial advisor?

Plenty of people today want to know what traits do successful financial advisors share and what often makes them different. Although there are a lot of factors, there are several points that people found most interesting.

Common Denominators Of Successful Financial Advisors

Trustworthy – The client-advisor relationship will be based on a foundation of trust. Often, they are exceptionally trustworthy. They stick to what they utter and always keep their promises. Most of them also are naturally charismatic people. Still, following through and doing what you want them to do on your behalf is considered the most important part.

Action-oriented – They put great ideas into work. They are always ready to take action. They are fond of setting deadlines and working on making exceptional ideas turn into reality.

Always on the lookout for learning opportunities – Regardless of whether it is a free training seminar on prospecting or perhaps a thought-provoking newspaper article, they continuously look for great opportunities to learn more about the finance industry and how to successfully conquer it. They search for various resources to learn and grow. Furthermore, they constantly look for various ways on how to implement new ideas in their practice.

Very High standards – They often set unrealistic goals, and meet them. They usually make a habit of setting high standards. Against all odds, they will find a way to meet such goals. At first, you won’t believe that such goals can be achieved. Moreover, they think about their goals in terms of opportunities instead of challenges. In other words, they often think outside the box so even the unrealistic goals can be met.

Good listeners – Most people think that this is a trait that is not important for successful financial advisors. Well, it is highly emphasized that these professionals do a better job of understanding the wants, needs, pain points, fears, and motivations of their clients. Knowing the client more is very crucial. They become capable of focusing on clients during meetings and tune everything else out. Basically, these professionals become successful because they fully understand their clients. And they know exactly what their clients goals are by becoming an excellent listener.

How To Send Money Abroad In An Efficient Manner

efEvery day, countless people make international money transfers. Is it easy to send money to someone in another country? Well, it depends. If you don’t take enough care, it may cost you much more money, as most people are oblivious to the hidden fees. Let’s find out more about how to make the process safe and cost effective.

For sending money overseas, you will have to bear two types of costs: the currency conversion cost and the cost to transfer the money to your desired country. The service provider can be an FX broker, a bank or a money transfer company. The thing is that they don’t convert one currency to the other on the basis of the inter-bank rate. Instead, they make the exchange at a lower rate making a good deal of profit. Give below are a few tips that may help you go through the process efficiently.

Foreign Exchange Brokers

Acting as intermediaries, foreign exchange brokers deal with a lot of banks and provide the best exchange rates. While their primary role is to convert currencies, they can also help you send money abroad for a reasonable fee.

While this option is cost effective, especially if you want to transfer over $5000, the process can take longer to complete. Choose this option if you don’t have to send your funds abroad urgently.

Commercial Banks

Banks are the most common means of international money transfers all over the world. However, the fact of the matter is that banks are known for charging hidden fees for money transfers, and the fees will continue to go up as the amount of money that needs to be transferred goes up. But the advantage of using a bank to do this job is that banks are considered the safest way of transferring money abroad. So, if you are planning to do the transfer through a bank, make sure you choose a bank that charges a minimum amount for transfers.

Money Transfer Providers

If you want to send less than $5000 to someone in another country, money transfer providers is probably your best option. They are best in terms of cost of transfer. Typically, they offer bank-to-bank transfers. You can also find some providers who allow you to receive cash at cash pick-up branches.

Online Money Transfer

These service providers allow you to send money abroad charging a minimal fee. Usually, they charge just $1 extra for the transfer. Some providers don’t even charge this fee.

These providers are regulated by the financial authorities of the same country they operate in. They use the state-of-the-art financial technology for sending and receiving funds. So, you can count on them with your eyes closed.

With online money transfer, you don’t need to visit a financial office. All you need to make the transfer is a computer and a fast internet connection.

Electronic Trading Solutions to Improve Business Opportunities

edDigitization of trade finances is touted to provide significant benefits for trading partners and corporate banks. The other major benefits of digitizing trade finances are the reduced costs and the risks of international trade. The connected networks and connections have improved visibility and transparency that makes the entire process smooth and easy. The ability to make electronic trading solutions digital requires time because of the increased stiff global competition.

Corporate organizations have their own reasons to go digital when it comes to the trading solutions. The reasons to go digital are many and the biggest reason being reduced costs with a steady increase in efficiency. Going digital also improves the payment processes at a quicker pace which in turn enhances transactions. Corporate companies collaborating together for the common cause of work also shows an improvement in monetary transactions. When companies adopt the electronic trading solutions, the increase in visibility while tracking and auditing transactions reduces all sorts of risks associated with fraud and non-compliance. Digital trading solutions are considered to be effective since it increases opportunities for quick and easy access to finances.

If you had thought that corporate was the only industry that benefited from this, you were wrong because banks and financial institutions experience efficiency because of this digital solution. We all know that there is an increase in efficiency and reduction in fraud activities because of electronic trading solutions. However, the exposure and visibility of the financial institutions also increase because the financial supply chain provides value added services for client benefit.

In order to enjoy the benefits that electronic trading solutions provide, both the financial institutions and the corporate organizations need to come together to establish potential changes. These changes are sure to add value and make the flow of work smooth and easy. Thankfully, these changes have gradually begun to outweigh the challenges organizations were experiencing.

Corporate Digitization

The last decade has seen a significant change in the international trade industry because of the competitive pressure from trading partners. It is time for banks and corporate enterprises to respond quickly to the new opportunities. The commercial decisions also need to be quick on the basis of the financial agreements and the payment types. These trends have expanded the market for alternative funding. Fluctuating prices have forced organizers to explore newer ways of optimizing transaction costs in all aspects of their trade cycle.

Operational Efficiency through Auditable Process

There has been an increased focus on maintaining documentation processes to keep a constant check on the regular flow of work. Documentation is an established process which is also an old school approach to work. The growing competition has made the market conditions pretty tough and it is important for banks and financial institutions to become more agile and responsive while handling client requirements. This transition by banks is easily possible with the help of the electronic trading solution. The electronic documentation process minimizes human errors and is extremely accurate.

Transformation in Global Trade

Electronic trading solutions lead to easy handling of trade and finances which further help companies to run an end-to-end process successfully. Digitization helps in keeping the work related processes on the right track because relevant documents are in place. This entire process acts like an instant authorization which further helps in keeping the pace of work fast and effective. It is important to stay ahead in business and that is possible only when you adopt new technological trends that help in easing the global trade transaction processes. These processes play a critical role in developing and improving corporate relationships through efficient work management systems.

Leaving An Enduring Financial Legacy

sfDave Ramsey wrote a book called The Legacy Journey: A Radical View of Biblical Wealth and Generosity. I like this book because it discusses how money is from God, and we are therefore His stewards.

Some will try to convince you that money is inherently evil.

Your Financial Legacy Starts With Building A Strong Financial Foundation

Financially helping others is your end goal. But, you can’t do that if you are in financial trouble. Therefore, your first step is strengthening yourself money-wise so you can assist others. With a secure foundation, you can be a great benefit to people in need. For example, you must stand on higher ground before you can lift someone else.

Giving generously to charity is difficult at this point because you are focused on conquering your debt and mastering your spending habits.

Mastering your spending habits is often complex, but a simple idea and not always easy to employ is paying yourself first. Some attribute consistently saving a percentage of everything you make as the most important financial habit. A second critical practice Dave teaches living by a budget, and the rich are not left off the hook because they are not living paycheck to paycheck.

Beating debt requires discipline. For example often, financial discipline means looking at money and possessions differently. Furthermore, shopping cannot be your stress reliever. Similarly, if paying yourself first is the most important financial habit, the second greatest attitude is contentment.

Step Two: Create A Vision For Your Life And Family

Every family and individual need a vision. For instance, a clear and sharp vision will bridge the gap between where you are and where you need to arrive.

Many people are stressed out and can’t sleep because of crippling debt. Similarly, always fighting with your spouse over money problems is draining on a marriage. As a result, the constant stress and fighting blocks you from concentrating on your vision and dreams.

The Power of Giving

Dave strongly emphasizes paying tithing to your church.

Giving 10 percent of your income to your church changes you. It prepares and softens your heart and magnifies your power to give. Dave attributes the lavish Christmas parties he throws for his employees as a result of tithing. Tithing turned him into a generous giver.

He says giving to the kingdom of God is the greatest investment you will make. However, there are many ministries and charities you could donate to, but not all of them are worthy of your hard earned money. Therefore, he suggests you research them like you would any business deal. For example, many ministries and charities manage their money and resources horribly.

If you are wealthy should you give a mile wide or a mile deep?

I think the best strategy is to give a lot to one or a few so you can make a greater difference. However, if you are rich, spreading your money out to many is tempting. Additionally, even the financially free do not have an unlimited stash of charity cash to give away.

The Guide to Use an ATM Machine

aeSince the dawn of the ATM (automated teller machines), banking has never been simpler. An automated teller machine, or ATM, provides one the convenience to make quick and prompt cash withdrawals. However, the purpose of the ATM does not end there, various other banking transactions, such as depositing money, transfer of funds and balance inquiries and account updates are possible via ATM machines. Since, the system saves, time and reduces delays, banks have ATMs located inside, outside or at various convenient and accessible locations, like gas stations, grocery stores and malls, so on.

There are a few things to consider before using an ATM,

Verify the network logos: These logos may be located in the ATM or debit cards, are indicative of the acceptable banking consortium. This means the ATM machine will have a list of acceptable logos posted on it. Even though many cards are universally acceptable these days, there is a charge on using the card in other bank ATMs after a number of withdrawals.

Be Vigilant: The use of debit card at ATM machines should be done under complete care, make sure no onlooker can see the PIN designated to provide access to your account.

These machines are easy to operate and provide systematic guidance to the users, the steps involved in using an ATM.

Step 1: Select the appropriate bank ATM.

Step 2: Insert your ATM card in the designated slot or swipe the card depending on the machine.

Step 3: Select the language that you desire for the user interface, most machines offer English and regional languages to choose.

Step 4: Enter the PIN (Personal Identification Number) provided along with the ATM card at the time of registration. Make sure you memorize the PIN and never disclose the same to a stranger or even acquaintance, to avoid the risk of card fraud.

Step 5: Select from the given transactions. Generally, the options are available at most ATMs, such as withdraw, deposit, balance inquiry and transfer. If you choose to withdraw, the ATM prompts for the amount, which once entered the ATM checks the balance of the account, and renders the cash if feasible.

Step 6: The machine prompts for printed receipt, which will be provided if you opt for the same.

Step 7: One can choose to continue with more transactions or finish the same.

Make sure to remove your ATM card, if it is inserted at the beginning of the transaction, without fail.

The common dilemma when using the ATM, is forgetting the PIN, the ATM machine allows only a number of attempts before confiscating the card. If one forgets the PIN, should request for the same at the issuing bank. Many fall victim to card frauds by not being vigilant and careful when transacting at ATM machines, be aware of your surroundings and keep the bank ATM card safe. The ATM provides a world of ease and accessibility to the users, by its easy, instantaneous and safe process.

How Does Advance Inheritance Work?

herTo see a loved one die in front of your eyes is really bad. I have personally seen my grandparents leaving us alone and crossing to the other side. It was heartbreaking to see them take their last breaths in the same bed.

But not every individual has the same bond with their loved ones. There are families that have a lot of complications and problems within them. Sometimes, some parents don’t get along well with their children and vice versa. It all depends upon how you maintain your respect and bond with your loved ones.

But there are also families, which are closely knit together. Some of the parents earn well and leave a huge amount of property for their kids. No doubt money can’t replace them, but it is nothing, but their blessings and good wishes for their children.

If you have recently suffered from the loss of a loved one, you surely know how difficult it is to cope up with his death. However, if he has left something for you in his will, you should consider yourself lucky; not everybody gets such a gift!

However, it is not easy for you to get the money or property soon. There are hundreds of formalities that are expected to be completed, before you get the money in your hands. This is the only reason why people opt for advance inheritance, so that they use the money to meet their needs, before they are blessed with the money or properties.

‘How does advance inheritance work?’ You wonder. Here is how it works:

• You need to search for a particular company, which is into such a service. You can surely take the help of internet to get the best companies, out of which selecting one isn’t a major problem.

• The website then asks for certain details from your end. It may also need some of the personal details, which you surely have to fill to get the loan. Once you fill in the basic information related to the estate as well as your relationship with the deceased individual, the details go for confirmation.

• After confirmation and finding out about your share in the inheritance, the company trusts you. It then provides you with an advance loan on your inheritance and waits for the day when you bang your luck in the court.

• The moment you receive your inheritance, you sell it for a good amount of money. As soon as you get your money, you then assign a small portion of it to the advance inheritance company.