Personal Capital Review – An Easier Way To Manage Your Finances

Personal Capital Review - Free Personal Finance SoftwareHave you ever heard of Personal Capital? If not, today I am here to talk all about their product that I personally use in this Personal Capital review.

Personal Capital provides FREE personal finance software that is somewhat similar to Mint.com, but better. If you like using Mint, I recommend checking out Personal Capital.

Quick summary of what Personal Capital is – their free personal finance software allows anyone to better manage their finances by allowing users to aggregate their financial accounts. You can connect accounts such as your mortgage, bank, credit cards, investment portfolio, retirement, and more, and it is all FREE. You can track your cash flow, your spending, how much you’re saving, and how your investments are doing. With their free financial software, you can see all of your accounts easily in one place so that you can manage everything easily.

And I’ll say it again. It’s free and there’s no catch!

As you know, I’m all about making your finances as simple as possible so that you can focus on more important areas. Personal Capital allows you to manage all areas of your financial situation all in one place.

You can use Personal Capital via your computer, a tablet, cell phone, and even a smart watch, which makes it great because you can stay up to date on your finances no matter where you are. [Read more…]

Do You Need A Budget?

4 Reasons For Budgeting - Reasons For Preparing A BudgetThere are many reasons for budgeting, yet it seems like the majority of people still do not have one.

In fact, according to a poll by Gallup, two-thirds of households do not have a budget.

I believe budgets are extremely important and that nearly everyone should have one. Rich, poor, middle-class, or whatever you are, a budget can most likely help improve your financial situation.

I’ve been asked several times why I have a budget and that I must have money problems since we track our cash flow and our spending. I’ve even had people offer to lend me money before when I have brought up anything relating to the word “budget.”

For some reason, there is a negative connotation attached to the word “budget.”

There’s a myth out there that only people who are “bad” with money need a budget.

However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Considering that the average person saves no where near the amount needed to retire, creating a budget should be on more family’s to-do lists. [Read more…]

What Parents Can Do To Help Their Child Make The Most Out Of College

What Parents Can Do To Help Their Child Make The Most Out Of CollegeHello! Enjoy this post from a fellow blogger.

I’m a new mom with an eight month old boy who is growing way too fast for my liking.  Although he won’t be in college for another 18 years, I have already begun to worry about everything college related when it comes to his future. 

And I should be worried.  College students today have it a lot harder than students did even 10 years ago. 

The job market is more competitive than ever and college degrees, while completely necessary, are just not enough anymore. 

Today more than ever, job seekers need a college degree.  There’s no denying that.

More and more employers require a bachelor’s degree for jobs that do not require college-level skills, and jobs that in the past were predominately held by workers without college degrees. [Read more…]

Important Money Lessons My Dad Taught Me – Money Doesn’t Have To Make Your Life Miserable

One of my favorite pictures of my dad!

One of my favorite pictures of my dad!

Tomorrow marks seven years since the day that my wonderful father passed away after a six month battle with cancer. I don’t talk about him much as it’s still a tough subject for me.

However, he was a HUGE part of my life (I was a daddy’s girl 100%) and not talking about him just wouldn’t make sense.

This is especially true because he taught me so many important money lessons.

Below are some of the money lessons my father taught me.

 

He taught me that I could afford to travel.

My dad traveled all over the world.

Besides his family, the other things he loved in life were traveling and airplanes. He always made sure to fit traveling into his life in any way he could, and I gained many great memories from it.

I still remember him taking me to Disney World ALL THE TIME (I loved it!), him taking me up in small planes (he had his pilot’s license), and even having a great time at the airport. He loved every little part about traveling.

He created hundreds of photo albums from his travels which I still look at on a regular basis. I also recently found a travel journal he kept which listed out all of the amazing places he traveled to.

My dad was not rich if that’s what you are thinking. Instead, he worked with his budget and always made sure to fit exciting trips in because that is what he believed in.

For example, he bought a new Camaro in 1984 (this was his baby), and he drove it up until a few months before he passed away in 2008. He didn’t care about furniture, electronics, or anything else. He would often work long hours, he hardly ever called off work, during short-term layoffs he would find low-paying jobs at other airlines, he always had a budget, he always saved money, and more.

He was all about travel and he managed his money well so that he could take trips whenever he could.

 

He taught me to not live paycheck to paycheck.

My dad was all about having a budget. He went over his budget and his checkbook nearly every single day. Working for the airlines meant that he occasionally got laid off and rehired over and over again.

Due to this, he always made sure to budget his money well.

He always had an emergency fund, he always made sure he spent less money than he made, and he always made sure to put as much money as he could towards retirement.

My dad did anything and everything to make sure that as kids we didn’t have to worry about money or go without anything that we needed. It’s a trait of his that I loved. Even when he would get laid off, he never acted like it was a big deal because he was always prepared.

 

He taught me that credit can be used to my advantage.

The topic of credit cards and credit came up a lot when I was younger.

I remember one day my dad was complaining about a scammy credit card commercial. I was super young and said “I’m never going to have a credit card!”

My dad then told me that credit cards could be used to my advantage if I used them correctly. He then taught me all about how to use credit cards at a young age, and I now use credit cards very often to earn awesome rewards and bonuses.

Already in 2015, I have earned over $1,000 in cash back through my credit cards by spending just like how I normally would.

Thanks Dad for another great money lesson!

 

He taught me that money doesn’t have to limit you.

Out of all of the money lessons he taught me, this last one is probably the most important.

Even though my dad passed away too young, lived on a budget, and saved for a retirement that he never got to experience, I truly believe that he still lived the life he wanted to live.

He was still able to travel all over the world and he visited many, many countries. I’m not sure how many countries he visited but I’m sure it was well over 50.

I think the most important money lesson that I learned from my father is that money doesn’t have to control you. Even though you will never know when your last day is, you can still save and spend your money wisely, while also living the life you want.

Too many people believe that they can’t lead a good life on a budget. That is not true at all. You can still live a great life while managing your money, and without regret.

What money lessons did your parents teach you? What will you make sure you teach your children?

 

How My Sister Is Working, Attending College & Traveling – Plus a $100 Cash Giveaway

How My Sister Is Working, Attending College & TravelingHello! Here is a post from my wonderful sister who blogs over at FITnancials. She is getting ready to leave for the summer for a volunteer trip in Peru. I’m a proud sister! Also, don’t forget to enter the $100 cash giveaway at the end!

Hello everyone! My name is Alexis and I’m the blogger behind Fitnancials.com. I am also Michelle’s younger sister!

She inspired me to create my own blog since I’m so incredibly passionate about fitness and saving money. I not only talk about fitness and budgeting, I also talk about traveling and how I plan on earning a living while seeing more of the world.

As you may know, our dad passed away due to lung cancer a few years ago (it will be 7 years on Saturday). My dad was just over 50 years old, but he spent his entire life traveling the world. He is a big reason for why I love traveling so much.

His wanderlust transferred over to me and I know he would be so proud to see all of the traveling I’m doing. I can’t wait to pass on this travel bug of mine onto my children as well.

I have traveled more than ever in the past several months, and with that I have also received many questions about how I’m doing this. I want to say that it is possible for anyone to do what I’m doing, if you truly want it. It might take a little hard work, but it’s mainly about good planning and time management.

Below are some of the questions I often hear. Hopefully this will help you be able to travel more as well. [Read more…]

Beginner’s Guide To Earning Passive Income

What Is Passive Income 5 Passive Income IdeasPassive income has been an interest of mine for the past few years. However, up until recently, I never really did anything about this goal.

Dreaming is nice, but nothing happens unless you actually start making some changes. And, that is just what I plan on doing over the next few years.

Currently, passive income is a big interest of mine because I want to continue to bring in an income while being able to focus on other goals of mine (which may not generate income now or ever). I also want to diversify my income streams so that I am not too reliant on one area.

This way I can focus on what I want to do while not having to worry about how much money I am bringing in.

Below are different passive income-related questions you may be wondering. We will discuss what passive income is, the positives of earning passive income, passive income ideas, and the hard work that goes along with it.

[Read more…]