commingling your emergency fund and other savings can be a spending temptation that’s difficult to resist.” avoid lumping together your gas, electric, water and cable tv bills as “total utilities.” it’s harder to assess your usage that way. for example, for each of the utility companies to which you make a monthly payment, use your personal finance software to track your payments separately. a bill-averaging plan enables you to pay the same amount every month so you don’t have drastic ups and downs that can affect your budget. also, include meals for you and your family that you don’t prepare at home, such as take-out food and home delivery, when assessing your food budget.
ideally, you should have a retirement savings account and a personal savings account — that’s in addition to the emergency fund savings account that you only tap into in the event of a catastrophe. monitor your retirement savings account bi-weekly or every time you get a paycheck. by tracking your expenses through your personal finance software, you can get a clear picture on whether all or most of your money is going toward things that you really need or to the things you want. pay attention to overages every month, because you don’t want to reallocate portions of your income by setting new bank limits and deductions from your paycheck, only to have the amount change the next month. ready to take control of your finances? terms, conditions, pricing, features, offers and service options subject to change without notice.
for raffi and elaine boloyan, both 32, stretching their income became doubly-challenging when they chose to cut their income by nearly half. to avoid private mortgage insurance (pmi), they put 10 percent down and took out a loan for the rest of the down payment. a year later, when interest rates fell and home values increased enough to give the boloyans more than 20 percent equity in their home, they refinanced their mortgage and locked in a 5.5 percent fixed rate. they also used some of their inheritance to fully fund their roth iras. the boloyans are wise to take advantage of a roth for another reason. elaine and raffi opened their iras in a low-cost brokerage account, and they plan to gradually shift more money from individual stocks to mutual funds so they don’t have to monitor their investments as closely.
or they could shift 90 percent of their money to the t. rowe price retirement 2035 fund, and 10 percent to masters’ select smaller companies for a bigger stake in small-company stocks. they cut the cost of homeowner coverage by electing a $2,000 deductible, and they could save 10 percent or more on their auto insurance by raising the deductibles on their two cars from $500 to at least $1,000. elaine and raffi opened a college savings account for ava in california’s state-sponsored 529 plan, to which they add money whenever they have spare cash from work bonuses or holiday gifts. in the end, elaine and raffi say the secret to boosting cash flow is to figure out which expenses you can cut. ready to take control of your finances? offer good for new memberships only.
unnecessary.” every month, look at your household budget tracking to determine whether you are on target. allocate any money left over to your emergency fund or managing family finances—how to keep it all on track and under control as traditions (and families) change and grow, quicken adapts to your needs, for raffi and elaine boloyan, both 32, stretching their income became doubly-challenging when they chose to cut their income by nearly half., budget calculator based on income, budget calculator based on income, quicken budget calculator, budget calculator monthly, household budget calculator.
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