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Friday, September 5, 2014

Review of the ABCs of Money: Free Finance Books on Kindle

Money- via Wikimedia
The book, the ABCs of Money is written by Natalie Pace. It is available in the Kindle edition and is 183 pages long. You can lend this digital book to other people.

If you are looking for solid financial advice, you will find this to be a helpful guide. It’s an easy read whether you have considerable experience in managing money or are just a beginner.

Everything is written in plain language that is easy to understand. You can easily apply what you learn to your situation, whether you are going through foreclosure, entering the world of self publishing or attempting to save towards your education. Some readers have found it helpful when they want to apply for vehicle financing, rebuild their credit or put aside money for a major purchase.

Most adults try to improve their financial skills over time, no matter how much knowledge they feel they already have. This text explores ways to handle money that you may not have thought about before. It is a definite help in both tough and relatively easy economic times. The book is available free right now on Amazon Kindle.

Disclaimer: I did not receive sponsorship or payment for writing this review. This article is based on my opinion.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Loaning Cash to Family and Friends- Prevent Soft Loans from Ruining Relationships

Loaning cash to family and friends is nothing out of the ordinary. At one time or another, some of us may find ourselves considering extending a helping hand to a friend or relative who is in trouble financially. Before you do this, there are a few things to bear in mind.

What purpose will the money be used for?
If the money is to be used in a business venture, ask your friend or relative what kind of plan they have for making a profit from the business. You will have a better idea of just how much planning they have been doing. You will also know how to better help them, if the plan is sound. Ask what the money will be used for.

What is the person’s financial history?
Is the person borrowing money because they are genuinely going through hard times, or are they less careful with money than you would prefer? Someone who is very responsible in one area of life may not be as adept in another. Know where the person’s strengths and weaknesses are, so you know what to expect from them. Let the person know what your expectations are of them with respect to the loan.

Is this money that you are considering lending, money you can afford to lose?
No matter how faithfully your friend or relative promises to pay back the money, bear in mind that their expectations of the future might not bear fruit as they would want. Sometimes this is through no fault of theirs. Things can just go wrong.

If the unexpected happens, can you afford to lose this money? Will you still be able to maintain a positive relationship with this person? Don’t lend more than you can afford to lose.

When will the person pay back the loan?
Asking this is very important. For one, it reminds the relative or friend that you do expect the money to be repaid. Secondly, if the friend or relative has no immediate answer, it may be an indication that they hadn’t thought about it.

There’s a reason why some people advise against lending money to friends; it can break the friendship. However, it is hard to see a friend in need and not assist. Get the individual to sign a personal loan contract. Make sure you do what is necessary to protect yourself if you decide to help your friend.

Stop, Avoid or Get Out of Foreclosure and Keep Your Home

You can stop, avoid or get out of foreclosure and stay in your home. Your house is one of your most valuable assets and you have probably already spent a lot of money paying for it.

Some people say that if you are still paying a mortgage, your home shouldn’t be your biggest asset. The remaining debt puts you into a position that is unstable, as many people find out after missing a few mortgage payments.

Lower the Chances of Foreclosure By Getting a Cheaper Home from the Beginning
If you have not yet bought a house, make sure that when you do, you try to shop for a mortgage that is 20% less than what you can afford. Look at your budget and decide. This is because mortgage companies have the tendency to raise rates and when they do, that raises your monthly payment.

If you were already struggling to make the previous payment, it’s going to be hard to make an increased payment. Houses are very expensive, so it’s not always possible to do this but if you have a choice, spend below what you can afford.

What to Do if Your Mortgage Company is Applying Pressure
Many mortgage companies are quick to foreclose on accounts that are even a month behind. If you already have a home and cannot afford the mortgage payments for a period but you don’t want to lose your home, what can you do?

Get a Short Term Loan to Cover the Outstanding Mortgage
If your credit is good otherwise, you may consider getting a short term loan from a financial institution to cover the outstanding balance.
You can get these from:
  1. A reputable bank 
  2. A peer-to-peer lending service
  3. If you are a member of a credit union, this may be the best place for you to get a loan.
  4. Some companies also offer their employees loans at reasonable interest rates.
Talk to Your Mortgage Officer and Work out New Terms
These are only short term solutions though and if you notice that your situation is spiraling out of hand, you may need to talk to your bank about loan modification, or seek advice from a non-profit debt counseling agency or another person who will offer genuine advice and not just take your money.
The faster you do this, the better. Time is not on your side when it comes to situations like this but a decision made too hastily won’t profit you either.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Prospecting for New Business - A Review of New Sales Simplified

If you are prospecting for new business, New Sales Simplified can help you. This guide is written by Mike Weinberg and S. Anthony Lannarino. It is 229 pages long and is focused on techniques you can use to develop a consistent flow of new clients who will regularly make use of your products or the services you offer.

If you are a salesperson or head a sales team, you will find this text useful. It goes through the essentials of developing a strategy for selling your product. If you are new to business or have been doing well for a long period of time but want to improve even further, it will provide tips you can use to raise your income.

One of the biggest strengths of this text is the style that the information is delivered in. It’s lighthearted and funny and that alone makes the idea of cold calling someone seem less intimidating. While it walks you through the best way to build rapport with a new prospect, it makes you relaxed too.

New ideas are taught using stories. This makes it easier for you to remember the how of carrying out a particular strategy when you need to. Even if you are stressed, the examples are pleasant to remember. Things that are learnt while in a strong emotional state, such as happiness, tend to be remembered. The authors use that fact to help ensure that you remember most of their content.

They teach important concepts without being offensive. You learn to remember that every sales conversation involves getting feedback from the prospect as to what their needs are and matching what you have to offer with their needs. All in all, if you want to become a better salesperson, New Sales Simplified will teach the skills that help you get more business and prospects than ever before.
The link to “New ideas are taught using stories” is an affiliate link and I will earn from any sales generated through it.

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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Use Sales, Closeouts and Clearance to Save Money and Pay Off Credit Card Debt Fast

You can save money by shopping for items when stores are having clearance sales. This is one way to leave more cash available for paying off credit card debt and other loans that you might have.

Many people have the goal of clearing their outstanding debt. This would leave them with more cash free to use for investment or to meet other goals, such as saving for retirement or even taking a vacation in their own country. While debt exists, it eats away at your ability to save for the future by generating interest.

Sale-via Wikimedia, PD
It is not unheard of for $3,000 worth of debt to generate as much as $840 worth of interest over the course of one year. This is why it is so difficult for people to clear credit card debt sometimes. If you can only manage to pay the minimum balance, you will make very little headway in clearing your debt.

You can get almost everything you need for your home at a sale. Some sales allow you to save more than others. Never show at a sale without comparing prices first. You may find that the items you are seeing on sale can be beaten by another store, even though the other store has not discounted any of its items.

You can take advantage of sales to get low prices on furniture, textbooks for kids and adults, work clothes, sports gear and much more. Stores that operate online sometimes have closeout sections where you can find low prices all the time. These give you the opportunity to find essential items and the occasional gift at a price that you can afford.

Here are just a few of the things you can save money on by using sales, closeouts and clearance:
1. Dishes
2. Jackets
3. Pens
4. Hair color for home (semi permanent dye)
5. Frozen meats

By looking around online and offline you can get a deal on almost everything that you require. This allows you to put more money towards your credit card payments. Check out Natalie Pace’s book The ABCs of Money for useful advice on finance and clearing debt.

Disclaimer: The link to “The ABCs of Money” is an affiliate link and I will earn from any sales of Natalie Pace's books which are generated through it. However The ABCs of Money is completely free on Amazon Kindle, so you can read it for free, as I did.