Want to be a millionaire? Think like one first.

money-163502_960_720When starting out in life, not all of us receive a “small loan” of a million dollars from our parents. However, we all want to be millionaires but just how many people actually get there? More importantly how do they do it and what can you learn from their experience to increase your bank roll. Most Americans believe that roughly 15 percent of households hold millionaire status, but in reality, it’s more like five percent. Following is a recipe for success in your personal quest for wealth.

Ingredients:

Similar to any great recipe, you start with the ingredients. Every pantry has its basic, staple ingredients (flour, milk, eggs and butter) just like every person looking to increase their wealth. These basic staples include: ambition, the “millionaire mindset” and critical thinking skills. In regards to ambition, many people have the drive and many others have the vision to be a millionaire, but the magic happens when you combine your unique vision with your indomitable drive. The “millionaire mindset” is nothing short of being frugal. You want to be the person known as the “penny pincher.” The one that always finds the best deals. All our lives we are told to think outside of the box. Thinking differently along with always learning and seeking knowledge will set you apart from the average joe. After you acquire these ingredients, you must find that combination to get the skills working for you.

Directions:

1. You need to set a goal. Not just any goal will do, you need a SMART goal, one that is Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely. Your objectives and goals guide your vision. They set you on the right path. They give you a plan that allows for evaluation and feedback.

2. After you have a solid plan to work from, you need to do your best to make good choices. This means three things: do not be wasteful, think before you spend and stick to a budget. The best way to avoid wasteful spending is to repurpose. Think about new ways to use old items and “make do” with what you have. Before every purchase you should ask yourself three questions: Sticking to a set budget is harder than it sounds. When setting your budget, you should plan for extra spending, fun and entertainment. Keeping track of all spending and not forgetting that you have goals and a budget in place will all help. For more tips and tricks to help with your budget visit Lifehack.

3. Strategize, strategize, strategize. After you have set the goals and developed a plan, you need the tactics that ensure success. Most millionaires have an average of seven income streams. They harvest this cash flow by investing, saving for a rainy day and living below their means. Investing can be intimidating, but it’s well worth it. Investing and diversifying your portfolio are life changing decisions and should be handled appropriately. You can find some great starter advice from Money Under 30, but I recommend speaking to a financial advisor. Saving is an important aspect in money management. “Stuff” happens and having a nest egg for those pesky emergencies and major expenses like education, homes, cars and retirement gets you one step closer to millionaire status.

1. Do I need it? 2. Can I borrow it? 3. Can I find it cheaper somewhere else?

8 Costs To Consider When Buying A Home

plants-in-pots-818718_1280Buying a home can be a fun and stressful time. If you’re a first time home buyer, there are some costs (these tend to get overlooked) you should know about before entering into homeownership. Before buying a home, be prepared for these 8 costs:

  1. Mortgage payments. Your mortgage is a long-term loan which is borrowed in order to purchase a home. In addition to repaying the principal amount borrowed, you’ll be required to pay interest to the lender. To help give you an idea of what your monthly payments will be, check out this mortgage calculator.
  1. Inspection fees. Because a home is most likely to be your biggest financial investment, you should have the home inspected before making an offer. This is when you know any repairs the home might need and can use this information as leverage while negotiating the price of the home. A home inspection can run up to a several hundred of dollars so you’ll want to be prepared for this upfront.
  1. Appraisal fees. Before you buy a home, you’ll be obligated (by your lender) to have the property valued by a professional real estate appraiser. In the past this fee was included in the closing costs, but is no longer that way as the appraiser needs to be paid regardless if the deal goes through.
  1. Private mortgage insurance. If you put a down payment that is less than 20% of the home’s price, you’ll be required (in most cases) to take out a private mortgage insurance policy. According to Mortgage Insurance Companies of America, a home costing around $200,000 can expect a monthly premium between $50-$100 per month. Ideally, the closer to the 20% down payment, the better your monthly payments will be.
  1. Closing costs. As you prepare to sign the closing documents on your home, be prepared to pay closing costs  and any other assorted fee. The closing costs usually include processing fees, underwriting fees, recording fees, survey fees, and title insurance fees; these can run up to thousands (2-3% of the mortgage loan amount) of dollars. When applying for a loan, be sure to speak with your lender and make sure these fees are included in the loan.
  1. Homeowners insurance. This is critical to have to protect yourself against rebuilding, repair, or replacement costs in the event of a major disaster or theft. If you borrow money from a lender, you’ll be required to purchase homeowners insurance. Before buying a home, talk to your insurance agent and ask for a quote to get a sense of how much it will cost so you can budget accordingly.
  1. Property taxes. These taxes are charged by the local government for public expenses, such as schools, parks, and sidewalks. The seller or seller’s real estate agent can provide you with the current annual tax on the property is. Also, be sure to find out when the next tax assessment is scheduled and if it will be increased by the sale of the home.
  1. Utilities. Once you find your dream home, ask the seller to provide you with a record of a year’s worth of utility bills to get a sense of how much you need to budget for utilities (heating, cooling, electricity, gas, and water). Also, take into account the differences in family size.

As you move forward in the process of buying a home, your real estate agent can answer any of your questions. Ready to buy? Give us a call today and let us help you make your homeownership dream come true.

Find Your Power Through Financial Freedom

I recently came across an article by the financial guru, Suze Orman, about “What Money Has Taught Me About Personal Power.” Throughout the article, she touches upon some excellent points I feel can apply to anyone’s life. Regardless of how much you make, what debt you have, or whatever else has happened in your life, you can take back your power and not let money control you.Small hands

Out of the six topics she touches upon in her piece, the two that stood up to me were: 1) Do what’s right, not what’s easy and 2) How you respect your possessions says a lot about how you respect yourself.

Do What’s Right, Not What’s Easy. She touches upon some excellent points in this section because it is so easy to run up credit card debt. Suze Orman suggests you ask yourself three questions: Is it kind? Is it necessary? Is it true? And you should answer yes to all three questions before lending money or cosigning on anything.

How You Respect Your Possessions Says A Lot About How You Treat Yourself. I found this one to be extremely interesting because as the saying go, your outer world reflects your inner world. In the piece, she advises you ask yourself what were you feeling the last time you bought your last item? How did it make you feel?

While you get in touch with your inner power surrounding money, now is a good time to clean out all the clutter in your home and reclaim your power. Here are some great tips through feng shui.

 

Make Your Money Work for You

It seems like wherever you turn people are talking about saving money, but when you feel like you are living paycheck to paycheck, how do you start saving for your future?SM160H

First of all, if you company offers a 401(k) plan enroll in it and if they match that is an extra bonus.

Another habit to develop is pay yourself first ~ not sure where to start? Try the 52 Week Money Challenge where you put $1 in a jar the first week, $2 in the second week and so on. If you maintain this self-discipline by the end of the challenge you will have saved $1,378.00 ~ just think what you could do with that extra money. By getting in the habit of paying yourself first, you will:

  • Create sound financial habits
  • Build your nest egg
  • Establish a strong mental mindset when it comes to financial empowerment

For more idea to saving your money check out Martha Stewart’s tips and make a plan to be free of credit card debit.

What are some of your money saving tips?