Archive for January, 2012

Getting Out Of Debt

January 31st, 2012

Having too much debt can have negative consequences on all aspects of your life. Putting all of your money towards your debt means that there is little left over for yourself. Creditors could call your place of employment and put your job in jeopardy. The moral guilt that you might feel for not being able to pay your debts usually adds to the stress that you are already feeling. How do you manage to get yourself out of your debt nightmare?

Reduce Your Debts Quickly

Contact your creditors and see if there is anything you can do to reduce the amount that you owe on your debt. A debt settlement can be the compromise that you need to start getting ahead. A debt settlement will allow you to pay a fraction of the amount that you owe without harming your credit score. Creditors usually accept the deal because an easy settlement now is a lot better than having to fight for a share of the money in court. Debt consolidation loans could also be a great way to organize your finances to get you out of debt faster.

Gain Access To Lines Of Credit

It might seem a little strange that you would consider opening new lines of credit when you have had troubles with credit in the past. However, you are going to increase your credit score by opening these new lines of credit. This will allow you to qualify for better rates on loans and products that can help you get out of your debt faster. Lenders specifically offer secured credit cards for people with bad credit all the time. Secured credit cards are lines of credit that a borrower secures with a security deposit.

Raise Funds Or Cut Expenses

Reducing your debts and gaining access to credit lines are just methods of stabilizing your debt situation. The next step is to continue on the path of debt reduction. Sell off as many assets as you can to cut expenses or raise more funds to pay off your debt. Making more than the minimum payment each month will allow you to pay down your balances faster while avoiding as much interest as possible.

Make Permanent Lifestyle Changes

Make sure to never get back into debt once you have gotten yourself out of that hole. Stop spending so much on credit while cutting down on the spending in general. Taking fewer shopping trips or cutting back on Internet shopping should help you out. Understanding your spending habits and making changes for the better will only help you lead a more financially stable life.

Getting out of debt requires planning and a willingness to change. The best course of action is to settle whatever debts you can right away, pour as much money as you can into making debt payments and then make sure to never get into debt again. One day you will look back at this time in your life and wonder what you were thinking.

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The Slippery Slope of Freedom

January 18th, 2012

“Any people that would give up liberty for a little temporary safety deserves neither liberty nor safety.”Benjamin Franklin

“… God forbid we should ever be twenty years without such a rebellion. The people cannot be all, and always, well informed. The part which is wrong will be discontented, in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive. If they remain quiet under such misconceptions, it is lethargy, the forerunner of death to the public liberty…. And what country can preserve its liberties, if its rulers are not warned from time to time, that this people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to the facts, pardon and pacify them. What signify a few lives lost in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time, with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is its natural manure.”

Thomas Jefferson Papers, 334 (C.J. Boyd, Ed., 1950)

“If we wish to be free, if we mean to preserve inviolate those inestimable privileges for which we have been so long contending, if we mean not basely to abandon the noble struggle in which we have been so long engaged, and which we have pledged ourselves never to abandon until the glorious object of our contest shall be obtained _ we must fight!”  Patrick Henry

“Can the liberties of a nation be sure when we remove their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people, that these liberties are a gift from God?  Thomas Jefferson

The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government.”

Patrick Henry

“The citizens of the U.S. are responsible for the greatest trust ever confided to a political society”

“Resistance to tyrants is obedience to God.”  Thomas Jefferson

“Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is argument of tyrants. It is the creed of slaves.”  William Pitt in the House of Commons November 18, 1783

“We must all hang together, or, assuredly, we shall all hang separately.”  Benjamin Franklin at the signing of the Declaration of Independence, July 4, 1776

A wise and frugal government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government, and this is necessary to close the circle of our felicity.  Thomas Jefferson, First Inaugural Address.

“Government is not reason; it is not eloquence. It is force. And force, like fire, is a dangerous servant and a fearful master.”  George Washington

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Making Financial Resolutions for 2012

January 9th, 2012

The holiday season is over and New Year’s has come and gone. It’s time to look ahead, now, to the year that is laid out before us: 2012. For many people, this means making resolutions to which they hope to adhere throughout the year. People resolve to lose weight, spend more time with their families, travel to someplace new, find and better job, and to be a better friend, sibling, or spouse. The list of possibilities goes on and on.

While all these resolutions are certainly valid ones, there is another that you may want to keep in mind: a resolution to better manage your finances in the upcoming year. This commitment can be further broken down into several smaller resolutions, such as those related specifically to investments, savings, spending, and budgeting. A resolution in any of these areas is probably a beneficial one to make.

Before you make a financial resolution, however, it’s important to keep certain considerations in mind and ask yourself several questions:

-How would you label your financial situation? Are you secure? Content? Satisfied with your investments? If yes, you may want to make a budget that attempts to simulate your earnings, spending, and investments from last year. If not, you should identify areas of potential improvement and resolve to change them.

-Are any major events happening in your life this year? If yes, how do they stand to impact your finances? These events could be anything from a new job to a new car to a child going away to college. Almost every major personal event will have some sort of impact on your money. On that note, it is important to plan ahead. If you plan to get a new car, for example, now is a good time to start finding cheap insurance quotes and adjusting your financial resolutions accordingly.

-Do you have balance in your financial life? Do you save too much or too little for retirement? Do you spend too much or too little on something like food or clothing? As with everything else in life, having a financial balance is crucial for your monetary security. It probably also can contribute to your happiness and well being.

These are the major and most basic questions to ask yourself before making any finance-related New Year’s resolutions. The year ahead of us is full of promise and opportunity, but it is important that we go into it with a plan and a sense of purpose on even a purely financial level.

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