Self-Improvement and Interesting Knowledge

Category Archives: Financial Advice

Do I need to get travel insurance?

In most situations it is usually financially a better deal to go without it. These insurance policies can be expensive and can sometimes add another 10% or more on top of the price of the ticket that you have just purchased. Also it is often the case that these policies have certain loopholes that make them tricky. In a world where everything seems to be possible, you might be covered for a broken leg for example but you might not be covered for a tsunami.

Travel insurance will usually help you out if for some reason you need to cancel your trip or you need to delay it. It will also cover you for damaged or lost property and for any emergency medical treatment.

Most people assume that their regular at home insurance company will naturally provide travel insurance protection as well, this can be a very bad assumption. Before you leave you need to ask your insurance company at home 2 questions:

  •  Does my policy apply when I am outside the country?
  •  Will it cover emergencies like a trip to a foreign hospital or an emergency evacuation?

 

Most people will find that their at home  insurance provider  will not cover them in these instances therefore it is always a good idea to find out before you leave.

If you do decide that you want to get travel insurance, make sure that you ask the travel insurance company these questions:

  1.  Does this insurance policy cover foreign hospital expenses and emergency evacuation if needed?
  2.  Does this insurance policy cover high-risk activities?
  3.  Does it cover pre-existing conditions?
  4.  Does this policy required second opinions or pre-authorizations before treatment can begin?
  5.  Does it guarantee medical payments abroad?
  6.  Does it have a 24-hour support center?
  7.  Is there an age limit? Does a person’s age precludes certain coverage?

 

Every single person is different and every situation will also be different. As such you can’t make a general statement as to whether you will or will not need travel insurance. In order to find out for yourself whether you will need travel insurance, ask yourself:

  •  Do I need special care? Does anyone whom I’m traveling with need special care?
  •  Will I or my family be engaging in any kind of high-risk activity?
  •  Am I going to a high risk area?
  •  Is there a possibility that I will need to cancel or postpone my trip at a moments notice? Is it hurricane season during my travel time? Do I or does someone in my family have a future appointment that might compromise the trip?

 

Basically getting insurance is sort of like trying to figure out the future, you are trying to figure out what might or might not happen. The best you can do is answer the above questions and make a good and informed decision. If you answer no to the 4 questions above, then it is most likely that you will not need travel insurance and can therefore save some money.

As a final note, see if you get any kind of special coverage from  your credit card. Visa for example will usually provide some coverage if you buy the tickets using their card. Depending on the kind of card that you have (gold, platinum, travel, etc.)    you will have different types of coverage so you must always make sure that you understand the coverage that you do have and any loopholes that might present themselves. If you don’t know exactly what your coverage is then talk to a representative that can tell you, do this before you travel.

Resource:
For U.S. Citizens
http://travel.state.gov/travel/travel_1744.html

For Canadian Citizens
http://travel.gc.ca/

Should I Get Life Insurance?

Life insurance is an incredibly sensitive topic. It is amazing how much emotion is generated when people talk about life insurance and whether they should have it or not.

Life insurance is basically there to provide for your dependents in the event of your death. To find out whether you need life insurance or not, all you need to do is consider for a while what would happen to those people that are dependent on you if you passed away. This is a difficult question and one that not too many people like to make, but it is a critical one if you do have family that are dependent on you.

If you do have people that depend on you, then it is my suggestion that you look into life insurance. If you do believe that you need to get life insurance, you must remember to try and stay logical and to try and not get baffled by all of the jargon. There are some key questions that you must ask yourself and depending on the answer to those questions, you need to make sure that you make the right choice for yourself and not for the insurance salesperson.

It is most important that you think right off the bat; how much money will I need? Most people will correctly assume that what they need is enough money to provide for their dependents. That is, enough money to pay for all the things that you’re paying for now so that those that you love are not left in a terrible state. For around a $40,000 a year annual income on investment, assuming a 4% withdrawal rate, you will need a minimum of $1 million policy. Essentially if you are to pass away, with $1 million coverage your dependents could survive with this million dollar investment.

The second most important question to ask yourself is; how long do I need to have this insurance policy for? And here’s where you can make some savings if you are willing to think with your head and be less inclined to be pressured into a type of insurance that you don’t need. If you think about it, your dependents are usually your children; since you are hoping that your children will be able to take care of themselves after they come of age, let’s say 18 years old or after they graduate from college, then you can start to seriously think about a term policy. This is of course assuming that you and your wife, husband, or partner have enough savings so that if you do pass away, all your joint savings are inherited by him or her and therefore your significant other is covered as well.

If you only need to have coverage for your children while they are growing, and you are confident that you will have enough savings with your significant other so that they are covered in case of an unfortunate event, then you need to seriously look into getting a term policy. Remember the savings that I’m talking about will be the amount that you think you will both have accumulated by the time you are in your 60s for example and your term life policy is over.
Why is this question so critical?

Because a term policy can cost you about 1/5 the price, or less, compared to permanent life insurance. Permanent life insurance is insurance that you pay for your entire life as opposed to term life insurance which only covers you for certain amount of time.

Permanent life insurance: this is the traditional life insurance that most people know about. You essentially buy a policy, if you make the health qualifications, and you are paying it for the rest of your life. This insurance can be quite expensive, around $15,000 a year, and any insurance salesman will make sure that they point out every single reason why you need it. The reason for this is that most insurance salesmen will make about a 20% commission on this sale.

Term life insurance: this is life insurance that only gives you coverage for a certain amount of time. You could for example have term life insurance coverage for 20 to 25 years; this would for example cover you during your children’s development years so that they are covered in the event of your accidental death, until they are about 18 to 21 years old, and they can after this hopefully take care of themselves. Term Life Insurance is usually far cheaper!

If you ask an insurance salesman what you need, they will give you every single reason that they can come up with as to why you need permanent life insurance. Unless you are part of the 1% that can use these policies as a tax shelter on giant million-dollar estates, what you actually might need is a term policy. If you are having problems with this decision then I suggest that you talk to a financial advisor, one that definitely does not get paid some kind of commission depending on what you wish to invest in.

Should you buy an older house to save money?

It is a big debate between people whether to buy a new house or whether to get an old house and try and save some money.

In the United States after the financial crisis of 2008, the amount of new construction has gone down to an incredible degree. Because of this new homes are now costing up to 50% more than what you could get an old home for. This reason seems to make an older a steal and would definitely seem to be the better buy.

If you get an older home your benefits can be:

  •  A nice well maintained lawn, with a possibly a good percentage of old mature trees around you.
  •  You are able to pick and choose established neighborhoods where it’s easy to see where things are and any changes that might happen in the near or extended future. This allows you to have assurance as to the stability of the area in which you might live; you can choose a neighborhood with far more certainty.
  •  Rustic beauty can be a grand benefit from buying an older home. Depending on the age of the house you can have many features that you will not find in the newer homes being built.

 

Buying older homes seems like a no-brainer, but like anything else, where there is positive there’s also negatives:

  • An older home will always have maintenance issues. These issues can be small akin to a small fix up or they can be major maintenance issues where you need to replace old substandard cabling, plumbing or even need to do some kind of major structural repair. Depending on the severity of the maintenance involved, you could do many of these repairs yourself if you are a handyman, but you should always be prepared to fork out money for maintenance issues with an older home.
  • Buying an older home requires a lot more consideration. You should never purchase a home without some kind of inspection which should definitely include structural inspection. You do not want any surprises after you have purchased the home; you should buy only when you know exactly what you’ll need to change, upgrade, and completely replace.
  • While an older home might seem like a good idea financially, we can never rule out the allure of a new home. Its benefits include:
  • New everything. You won’t need to worry about appliances, wiring, plumbing, structure, or any of the other things that you need to consider if you buy an older home.
  • While rustic beauty might appeal to some, there’s also something to be in said about the new designs and new home layouts. Some of these homes can be magnificent with a more efficient use of space.
  • There can also be something quite nice about purchasing a home in a new up and coming area. While there is indeed a certain amount of anxiety as to how the neighborhood will progress over time, a new area usually attracts younger more enterprising individuals.

 

When you consider whether to buy a brand-new house or an older one, the best thing to do is to try and not see things as black and white. What I mean by this is that you should not see buying an older house as the act of purchasing an old rustic marvel from the 1800s.

The best bet is to buy an older home but not one that is really old. For example, there are unfortunately many houses out there that have come into the market because of the financial crisis. This means that there are relatively new homes out there that can be purchased for an older home price. When you are looking for a new home, this would be the best thing to do.

In a newer older home, will have a good structural building. The wiring and plumbing should be up to modern standard and the appliances, layout, and closets should have the modern appeal and functionality that most people are looking for. The neighborhood should be relatively established and you should be able to have a good idea as to its possible future development and whether it now suits your kind of lifestyle.

Remember though that you should consider this to be an older home in that you should always hire a good home inspector before you buy. This is perhaps the most critical aspect of buying a new older home and one that is sometimes overlooked. Make sure you hire a qualified home inspector that you know will give you a good inspection on all aspects of the home. In other words you want to make sure that this person can tell you about the home’s wiring, plumbing, structure, mold, and overall maintenance. They should be able to give you good list of what the home needs and using this list you should make sure you add the costs of fixing every single thing on that list to the cost of the home. If you don’t have a way to either pay someone to or fix whatever it is yourself, you need to move on until you find something that you can afford completely.

Do I need to renters insurance?

It’s really easy to answer this question; if there is a fire in your place or you were robbed, how much would it cost to replace all the stuff that you own? With renters insurance you should be covered for all the losses that you incur which makes renters insurance a no-brainer.

Renters insurance will:

  •  Protect all your belongings in case of an accident. Make sure that you ask the insurance company for an exact detail as to what and what is not covered with your policy but, the minimal coverage should be robbery and fire. If you are in an area prone to some kind of natural threat like tornadoes and earthquakes, make sure that you talk to your insurance provider to see how you can get covered for this as well.
  •  Renters insurance should also have liability protection just in case someone is hurt in your apartment and perhaps tries to sue you.
  •  Renters insurance can also cover you if something terrible happens to the building that you’re renting in. That way you have coverage just in case you are forced to live somewhere else while the owners repair the building. This can be great protection to renters since they don’t have much control over the maintenance of the property.

It has become increasingly the case that landlords require every renter to purchase renters insurance. This is a good idea because the landlord’s insurance policy does not cover the renter so you should always make sure that you are covered for any contingency.

While renters insurance will not cover you for floods, you will most likely need to get some kind of extra protection for this, it will protect you from being sued by someone who just got bitten in the face by your pet poodle. Liability coverage has become a necessity in the modern world and renters insurance can definitely create peace of mind. This liability insurance can even protect you if a repair man or a delivery man gets hurt while inside your property.

Whenever you are comparing policies, make sure to ask exactly what you are covered for with your policy. Please note that:

  • some companies provide coverage for only a certain amount of time
  • some companies have a financial cap at a certain dollar amount, in other words they will cover you up to a certain monetary amount only

Before you get renters insurance, make sure that you walk around your apartment and determine the value of all your stuff. If you can, try to videotape this process and make sure to get serial numbers from everything that you own. Try to keep a copy of this video somewhere safe like perhaps your mother’s house or in the house of a trusted friend. This information can be quite valuable if you ever need to make a claim.

When money is an issue, make sure to ask about any deductions to your premiums. Some insurance companies will make deductions to the insurance premiums if the apartment that you are living in has a security system or smoke alarms set throughout the building. You could also see about saving on the cost of your insurance by asking if the insurer provides a lower rate if you have multiple insurance policies with them, for example you could try to get your renters insurance through the same company that insures your car, in this way it is possible that the company can give you a better rate overall. Also see if your employer is eligible for any discounts through different insurance companies as this can make a big difference as well.

Is a Lease better than Buying a Car?

Getting a new car is a wonderful thing. Who hasn’t seen those incredible commercials with the latest model being shown like it’s some kind of high-speed jewel. The car is all shiny and you know that it has that nice brand new car smell. These commercials are great and they do exactly what they’re designed to do as far as I’m concerned; the first thing I want to do is just go out and get that car… and drive it fast.

If you have seen these commercials, then you will also notice that whenever they quote the price, they will only be giving you the lease price on this vehicle. Car dealers do this because in a way they’re kind of showing you that it is this easy to come and pick up this wonderful car and essentially start driving it today. Most of these lease offers involve no money down and what seems to be a relatively low monthly payment.

But is a lease a good thing? There are definitely some positives when you consider the proposition:

– If you do own a business you can usually deduct far more from lease then you can from a car that you own completely.

– Leasing is definitely less of a pain. Your usually getting the best car and you’re replacing this car in about three years time for a brand-new model again.

– You are usually spending far less money per month. If you buy a car then you will be paying more a month and that is why in a commercial car dealers love to show the lease price instead of the actual monthly payment that you would be making if you were to buy this vehicle.

But it’s not all wonderful:

  •  The biggest difference between buying a vehicle and leasing one is that when you buy a vehicle after a certain period of time you will own that vehicle. In this sense you can think of it like buying a home or renting an apartment; when you buy a home there will come a point when you won’t have to pay anymore because you will actually own this home while if you rented an apartment you will be paying for the rest of your life. The thing with the car though is that it won’t take you 30 or more years to pay off, so after five years or so, you will own your car completely. The longer that you can hold onto this vehicle, the more saving that you can provide for yourself. Imagine trying to pay I lease of $210.00 a month for the next 40 years.
  •  a lease is great if you have the money to always get the best and you don’t need to look for a sale. Most people, myself included, need to look for bargains in order to try and save whenever we can. When you get a car on the lease, you are essentially paying the highest price possible for that car and for whatever expenses your accrue with it.  When you get a car on a three-year lease for example, what you are essentially doing is paying the depreciation of that car over those three years. The biggest depreciation with a car occurs within the first two or three years so essentially you are paying the premium amount for whatever car you have. Buying a car that is a year old, never driven but sat in the dealership for year, will therefore be a far greater deal than paying the top price for a vehicle year after year for the rest of your life.
  •  Your insurance payments will usually be less over time when you own your own vehicle. One of the big things that tends to lower the price of the insurance that you pay is the expense of your car. If you have an expensive new model of car then you will be paying top dollar for your insurance. But if you’re able to keep this car for five years or more, your insurance will start to go down as a result of the depreciation value of your vehicle. The car is still good, things still work great on it and if you get yourself a good model you could have it for a very long time, but the insurance company will charge less because they will consider it to be less valuable.
  •  remember that when you lease a car you don’t own that car. If you ever find yourself in financial difficulty, and for some reason can’t make the payments on your car, then getting out of this lease is going to cost you. You will never be able to sell this car and you will essentially be tied into this contract which comes with a penalty if you try to get out.
  •  As I said if you own a business a lease might be a good idea for you. I am not saying that I lease is a bad thing, you just need to really think about it before you get into one. Think about how much you will be using that car; a good rule of thumb is to only consider a lease if you will be putting more than 10,000 miles on this car every year that you are leasing it. It is also good to note that if you are going far over this mileage, there will most likely be a mileage penalty in the contract. But if you drive way less than this, you’re essentially paying the dealership to keep their car.
  •  Finally remember to consider the fact that if your car is stolen or it gets totaled, your insurance will only reimburse you for the market value of the car. This market value might not cover what you still owe on the lease. You can avoid this by paying extra to your insurance which is usually called “gap coverage” but that means that you will be paying substantially more to ensure your leased car.

 

As you can see, leasing a car might look really awesome in that commercial but it’s not a practical thing for the average person. Most car commercials are designed for the impulse buyer; get your blood boiling and get you really emotional about the fact that you really need this shiny new machine. The lease offer makes it seem like you could just go there and sign a small contract and walk away with your dream. Unfortunately unless you are very financially comfortable or own a large business where a lease becomes profitable, it is far better to buy your car.
My personal advice is that you get last year’s model. These cars are still new and they are not driven, they just have had a years’ worth of depreciation. This depreciation can mean big savings for you.

How to Give the Best Interview and Land the Job

With the current economic state in North America, finding and getting a job has become very difficult. When a good job opens up, you must be prepared to do your very best to be able to beat out the competition and get that job. There is nothing more crucial than the ‘job interview’ when it comes to landing that hard to find job. With this in mind here are some pointers that you should study before you go on that job interview:

Always have an answer for those typical questions, “why should I hire you?” or the often heard, “why do you want to work for us?”. The best way to prep for these kinds of questions, is to do some background research on the company that you are interviewing for. Try to do as exhaustive a search as you can, and find out the intricacies of this firm so that you will have a lot of responses that will be asked of you when you interview.
The best and easiest way to do this is to go online and see if the company has a website, and then study the contents of this website. Use the ‘about’ section to find out about the company’s key thoughts and ideas and these should give you a good idea as to how to answer the difficult questions above. Look up what the company does, their basic motto or their basic driving philosophy. These are most important assets for you because they are the psychological motivators of those that are working for the company. Find out what the company does exactly, who it deals with most often, and who its clients are. If you can impress upon the person that is intervening you that you hold similar ideals yourself and that you know what the company does, then you will be able to make them feel like you are one of them or at least that you will be a good asset to them if hired.

Make sure that you stay aware of your body language. If you get sloppy and you forget about your posture and what your body is doing, then you might put off the people that are interviewing you. The best way to maintain good body language, without having to read all those long manuals on ‘how to sit like a winner’ or ‘the best way to hunch your shoulders for success’, is to just try to maintain an attentive body posture. What I mean by this is that you should always seem like you are completely focused on what the other person that is interviewing you is saying and doing. If you do this, you will naturally ‘mirror’ the other person’s body language without having to make an effort to do so. This is most crucial because if you try to actually mimic another person’s body language, they will catch on pretty quickly and will either become offended or think that you are weird. Instead just try to keep an attentive body language and of course you should try to be as mentally attentive as possible.

After you have researched the company as much as you can, try to come up with three specific attributes that you think will be very much appreciated by your interviewer. Study the company policy, understand their style as best you can and understand the job that you need to do for them. With this information in mind think of attributes that you think they will appreciate in an employee. Beyond this try to think of particular and special skills that you can offer that you think is unique; in this way he will be able to show your abilities and to excel in this by demonstrating that you have researched the current position and that you offer more than the average interviewee.

Make sure that you always stay positive. It could be the case that you will be one of many people interviewing that day and this can make you feel insignificant. Try not to let this get you though, make sure that you stay positive and that you exhibit good humor. Be confident in your skills in your abilities.
The best way to do this is just go in there with the attitude that you will be doing the very best that you can. If you do your research, make sure that you are attentive, and you try to do your best in representing your skills to those that are interviewing you, then you are free from worry because you know that you did your best. Even if you do make a mistake and thinking back on your actions you realize that there are things that you could have done better, do realize that while you were in the interview you were doing your best. Learn from any mistake that you made but at the same time do acknowledge to yourself that you did your best at the moment and because you were truly committed to doing your best, you cannot really worry about the outcome because there is nothing that you can change now.

It is always a good idea to create some kind of follow-up correspondence. This means is that you should have an e-mail created for the sole purpose of doing a follow-up with the agency that you just interviewed for. This e-mail should go out within 24 hours of you having had an interview; it should begin with something like, “thank you so much for the meeting we had…”. Make sure that you mentioned things that you learned during the interview, and make a special references about the interview that might allow you to stick in the mind of the interviewer (reference some specific thing about yourself that the interviewer might remember). You can end this e-mail with, “I look forward to hearing from you”. Also make sure that you spell-check and that you read everything before you e-mail it out, the last thing that you want is to have some kind of grammatical error on this e-mail.

One of the critical factors of being able to land the job that you want, is to be able to give a great interview. In order to have that great interview you must be prepared, and the points above should allow you to stand out in any interview that you have. Being prepared means doing research and jotting down answers that you think you’ll need to provide when you are in the interview. In order to beat the competition you need to be one step ahead of the competition. Good luck!

 

 

 

 

 

Mortgage Problems? Here are 4 Basic options

There have been many problems lately with mortgage loans.

In the United States there has been an incredible amount of backlash and financial instability due to the mortgage crisis. We have all read the news as to why this has happened but forget to realize that it is a continual thing. People are still suffering because they are not able to pay off a mortgage loan.

It is the case that a number of banks have been very unresponsive in working with people that cannot afford their mortgage loans. It is a good idea to have a basic understanding of what it is that you can do in order to try and help yourself to cope with these payments. If you are having troubles with you mortgage loans, there are four basic options that you have for dealing with this problem:

1-You can get a loan modification. What this means is basically that your mortgage loan lender can agree to reduce the payments so that you can have payments that are more affordable for you. It is a good idea to shop around and to see if you can have your mortgage transferred to a bank that is willing to create a consolidation account for you. These accounts are basically created by taking all of your debts and putting them into one basic account. Instead of paying a whole bunch of different lenders, you are paying only one for one large sum. If you can find a lender that can create a consolidation account for you, the fact that you are also taking all your other debt payments and running them through their banks, might also enable you to reduce the mortgage payments that you are making. Essentially since you’re giving that one lender more business, they are willing to decrease your mortgage payments in the long-term.

2-Another thing that you can try if you are in deep trouble is to have a short sale. In order to have a short sale, your lender has to agree to let you sell your home for whatever you can get at today’s market. With a short sale even if you get less than the amount that you actually owe, the lender will agree to forgive the excess amount owing. Always make sure that you completely understand the contract that you’re filling out when you’re doing a short sale; make sure that you will not be asked to pay the extra amount that you would still owe, also make sure that you understand the minimum amount that you can sell the property for. Remember that the real trick here will be trying to sell your home in a very difficult market.

3-You might also be required to do a deed in Lieu of foreclosure
. This basically means that you give the house back to the lender and that the lender agrees to not go through foreclosure. This is a rare occurrence but you can ask your lender about it. Lenders will usually require that you attempt to do a short sale before they consider this type of action.

4-If you are not able to participate with the lender in any of the above actions, then foreclosure is usually the final outcome. If foreclosure does happen be aware that in some states, the lender can sue you for any losses that they incur if the sale price is less than the outstanding mortgage balance.

It is always a good idea to stay well informed as to what the State and the Federal government are offering in order to help you in your particular geographical area. Stay informed by contacting the State and the Federal government agencies in your area. The laws between states can be quite different so you must stay aware of these differences so that you can use them to your benefit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

How to Increase Your Income

When we consider our financial situation, it is always good to realize that we can change our current circumstance for the better. Some tend to get themselves really down when they consider their financial situation because they think that there is no way that they can overcome the problems that they are facing. As a result they tend to try to completely ignore anything financial so that they don’t have to deal with this pain. Before you begin any kind of scrutiny into your financial situation, it might be a good idea to consider the following questions, so that you can develop a clear strategy as to how you will better your current income situation as soon as possible.

In order to better your financial situation, begin by writing down how much you currently earn. Take into account any kind of income that you have at the moment.
Do you believe that it is possible to increase your income? Why or why not?

Now consider how much money you think you could make. That is how much money you think your ideas and your contributions are worth to the employer that you now have or to the business that you might own. Consider your intellectual capabilities and honestly answer this question; how much am I worth?

What do you do now that generates the most value? What is the one thing that you do that you get the most money for? If you were to do this one thing only, then how much would that be worth? This will give you a good idea as to what you should be focusing on in the future in order to increase your personal worth. It can also give you a good idea as to what your employer or your business finds most valuable about you. Remember this point because it can be a negotiating point in the future.

If you do have a business or if you do something specifically for your employer, what is it? What is your unique ability that provides this worth to your employer or to your business? If you do not have a unique ability, can you develop one? By discovering what generates the most value in whatever it is that you do, you can begin to assess a more unique way to provide this service. The more unique that you can become, the more that you become an asset.

Considering what you have written above about yourself; how much do you think you should be earning? Do a little research online and find out how much you should be earning for what you are providing. This will not only allow you to develop negotiating points, it will also provide ways for you to become even more of an asset through your uniqueness.

You must also formulate a plan that will outline how and when you will be earning this amount. This plan needs to be very detailed, you need to describe who you will be working for, what amount of money you want to be making, and what exactly you will be doing there. You must also try to delineate the steps that you will need to take in order to get to this position.

Once you have written all this down and you have contemplated the questions and the answers, ask yourself one last question; what action can you take today to get yourself headed in the right direction?

Beginning any financial planning with these questions, should allow you to see that you can always improve your income situation. Discovering that you can make more than you think you are currently worth, will give you hope and an action plan on how to get there. Creating a plan in order to attain greater earnings will also focus your mind in the direction of growth instead of fear and impotence. Realize that what you have written down is doable and quite possible, all you need to do is discover your talents, investigate how much these talents are worth, and plan or negotiate in order to make them happen as soon as possible.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In Order to have Financial Success, Define What Money Means to You

In our modern world money has become a very important thing. Money is not just what makes the world go around it is also what supports it. Money, name the currency of your choice, is a draft created by governments that should be based on quantifiable goods. Money has become the way we do all our business and it is nearly impossible to get anything for yourself unless you have the money to do so.

It is most important then that you think about money and why it matters to you. As I have stated above money is a very important thing to all of us but it is always important that you defined what money is to you personally. This personal definition should have both objective and subjective understanding so that you are able to understand why you need money as a physical being in this world and also how and why it is that money is so important to you on a personal psychological level.

Before you begin this definition, begin to realize that wanting money is not a crime; that unless you are COMPLETELY off the grid, you need money to survive. Many would like to tell you that the pursuit of money is evil; if that is the case then we can all be said to be evil because we all need money to survive. We all pursue money in our own way because we all need to pay for our daily bread and to also provide for ourselves and our family. To pursue money at the cost of everything else can be said to be a crime; then again the pursuit of anything at the cost of everything else can be said to be a crime as well. Nothing in life is ever black and white and you should never make an assumption about money either. Money is just a means to an end, that end being a better life for yourself and the ones you love. In your own heart you will know when money has taken over your life.

Begin your definition of why money matters to you by defining your beliefs about money. If you explore these beliefs you might find some very interesting ideas, ideas that you should definitely pursue because it is these beliefs that shape your relationship with money. This relationship will either make it very difficult for you to find wealth or it will make it very easy for you to prosper in your daily life.
Do you believe that working hard is good but that being wealthy is the root of all evil? Why? Ask yourself; What do I believe about money? You might be surprised at what your answers are to these question. If you are poor, or are working impossible hours, question your beliefs about money. Changing these beliefs can complete change your monetary reality. Any answers that you are able to discover can shed great light into your current financial situation.

In defining why money matters to you, you must also define why money matters to you in a purely practical sense. What this means is that you must figure out how much you spend and why you spend in the way that you do. This definition essentially involves your ability to define how much money comes into your life and goes out of your life on a weekly, biweekly, and monthly basis. You must create some kind of chart or some kind of personal financial statement that allows you to see how you’re getting your money, how much you’re getting, how much you’re spending, what you are spending it on and why.

These personal objective and subjective definitions of money will allow you to intellectually attain a greater understanding of the role that money plays in your life. Never underestimate your subjective understanding of money and wealth in general. They are the key principles, the beliefs, that set the tone for how you will acquire money, how easy it will be for you to acquire this money, and what you will do with the money that you do have. Money is very important, you must learn to define it before you can become a success at getting and keeping it.