75 Personal Finance Rules That Apply To Everyone

A “ground rule” is a mental acronym. This is a heuristic. It’s not always true, but it’s usually true. It saves your time and brainpower. Rather than reinventing the wheel for every financial problem, personal finance rules allow you to apply past wisdom to find quick solutions.

Today I’m going to make my best impression of Buzzfeed and provide you with a list of 75 ground rules for personal finance. Some are effective tip packs while others are math shortcuts to save brain space. Bet you will learn a thing or two from this list quickly.

Basic
These basic rules of personal finance apply to everyone. They are simple and universal.

  1. The order of operations
  2. Insurance protects wealth. It doesn’t build wealth.
  3. Cash for both operational expenses and emergencies, nothing more. Saving too much money means losing value in the long run.
  4. Time is money. Wealth is a measure of how long your money can be bought.
  5. Set specific financial goals. Specific number, specific date.
  6. Monitor your credit rating. Accommodation at least once a year.
  7. Conversion of wages into salaries: 1 USD / hour = 2000 USD / year.
  8. Don’t mess with town hall. Don’t cheat on your taxes.
  9. You can buy anything. You can’t afford all of them.
  10. Money saved is money earned. If you look at the bottom line, saving a dollar has the same effect as making dollars. Saving and earning are equally important.

budgeting


I like budgeting, but not everyone is as busy as me. However, if you are (or may not be) looking for a budget, these basic budgeting rules must be followed.

  1. You need a budget. The key to managing your financial life is to create a budget and stick to it. This is the first step in making a financial decision.
  2. 50-30-20 budgeting rules. After taxes, 50% of your money must meet your needs, 30% to meet your needs, and 20% to pay off debts or invest.
  3. Use the “sink tool” to save for a rainy day. They know it will rain eventually.
  4. Don’t confuse savings and checks. One saves, the other spends.
  5. Children cost about $ 10,000 per child per year. Family planning = financial planning.
  6. Spend less than you should receive. You can say “yes”. However, if you don’t measure your expenses (eg on a budget), are you sure you follow this rule?

Invest and Retire


In my opinion, the main “what you need to know” investment is for future financial success. The following basic rules will help you dip your fingers in this water.

  1. Don’t pick stocks. Instead, choose index funds. Very easy, very effective.
  2. People who invest full time are smarter than you. You can’t hit it.
  3. Rule of 72 (approved by doctors). The annual growth rate of the investment multiplied by the time of doubling is (approximately) 72. A 4% investment will double in 18 years (4 * 18 = 72). The 12% investment will double in 6 years (12 * 6 = 72).
  4. “Don’t do anything, just sit down.” -Jack Bogle how bad it is to worry about your investment and respond to the emotion.
  1. Bring matches to the employer. If your employer has a pension plan (e.g. 401,000, annuities) make sure you get as much free money as possible.
  2. Balance your investment before and after taxes. It’s hard to know what the tax rate will be when you retire. So if you balance your pre-tax and after-tax investments, your account will be balanced later too.
  3. Reducing costs. Investing in cost and expense ratios can cost you your profits. Keep these costs as low as possible.
  4. Don’t touch your retirement benefits. You may be tempted to dive into long-term savings for important current needs. But counter that desire. You will be thanked later.
  5. Realignments should be part of your investment plan. A portfolio that is starting to diversify can be the focus, with some assets performing well and others performing poorly. Rebalancing helps you calm diversification and reduce risk.
  6. The 4% pension rule. Save enough money for retirement so that your first year of spending is 4% (or less) of your entire hive.
  7. Save first for your retirement, the second for your child’s school. Retirees do not receive any scholarships.
  8. $ 1 invested in today’s stock = $ 10 for 30 years.
  9. Inflation is around 3% a year. If you want to be conservative, use 3.5% in your math.
  10. Shares earn 7% a year, adjusted for inflation.
  1. Are your age in bondage. Or have 120 minus your age in bonds. The heuristics, 30 year olds must have a wallet with 30% bonds, 40 years bonds with 40%, and so on. Recently, the “120 minus your age” rule has become more common. A 30 year old child must have a 10% bond, a 20% bond 40 year old, etc.
  2. Don’t invest in the unknown. Or, as Warren Buffett suggests, “Invest in what you know.”

Home and car


For many of you, home and car ownership add to your daily finances. The following basic rules for personal finance will be of great use to you.

  1. The sticker price on your home should be less than three times the total income of your family. Being “home poor” – or owning a house that is too expensive for your income – is one of the most common financial threats. Avoid it if you can.
  2. Faulty device? Replace it if 1) the device is over 8 years old or 2) it costs more than half the cost of repairing a new device.
  3. Used or new car? The price difference is no longer the same as it used to be. The options are the same.
  4. The total lifetime value of a car is approximately three times the price of a sticker. Choose wisely!
  5. The 20-4-10 rule for buying a vehicle. Enter 20% of the vehicle in cash with a loan for 4 years or less and a monthly payment that is less than 10% of your monthly income.
  6. Refinancing a mortgage makes sense once your interest rate drops 1% (or more) of your current interest rate.
  7. Don’t pay your mortgage up front (unless your other base is fully covered). Mortgage interest is deductible and current interest rates are low. While paying your mortgage up front can save you a bit of interest, it may be better to use it to earn some extra cash.
  8. Set aside 1% of the value of your home for future maintenance and repairs each year.
  1. The average car costs about 50 cents per mile over its lifetime.
  2. The interest payment on a depreciable asset (such as a car) loses twice.
  3. Your primary residence is not an investment. You don’t have to plan to live in your house forever and sell it for a profit. The logic didn’t work.
  4. Pay for the car in cash if you can. Paying car interest is a waste of time.
  5. When buying napkin tops, follow the 70% rule to choose a property worthy of.
  6. ​​When buying rental property, the 1% rule is an easy way to judge whether you are getting positive cash flow.

Expenses and debts
Spend money (“What’s up?”). Then this personal finance rule applies to you.

  1. Pay off your credit card every month.
  2. I am indebted to use psychology to help yourself. Consider a debt snowball or debt avalanche.
  3. When buying, think about the cost of use.
  4. Make your expenses tangible with the “money diet”.
  1. Never pay the full price. Shop and do your research for the best deals. You can earn money by shopping online, win discounts with coupon codes or coupons for free shipping.
  2. The buying experience makes you happier than buying things.
  3. Shop by yourself. Peer pressure increases costs.
  4. Shop with a list and stick with it. These stores are designed to lure you into making an unexpected purchase.
  5. Spend on who you are, not what you want to be. I love to cook, but I can’t justify $ 1,000 worth of professional kitchen equipment.
  6. The bigger the purchase, the more time it will get. Organic versus regular peanut butter? Don’t take 10 minutes to think about it. $ 100,000 for a time share? Don’t pull the trigger when you are three daisies high.
  7. Use less than 30% of the credit available. The use of credit plays an important role in your credit score. Increasing your credit continuously will hurt your credit rating. Try to keep your usage low (preferably paying monthly).
  8. Unexpected wind? Use 5% or less for self-medication, but use the rest wisely (for example, invest in later).
  9. Try to keep your student loans below the annual salary in your area.

The mental side of personal finance
In the end, you are what you do. Psychology and behavior play an important role in personal finance. That’s why this code of conduct is so important.

  1. Think about taking breaks. Mortgage payments aren’t always an optimal use of the extra cash. But the serenity that comes with debt relief is immense.
  1. Accumulation of small habits that have a big impact. It feels like a baby step now, but take your time.
  2. Give your brain time. Humans can rule the animal kingdom, but that doesn’t mean we’re not impulsive. Give your brain time to think before making important financial decisions.
  3. The 30 day rule. Please wait 30 days before making a “Dollar” purchase. After waiting, if you still want it and can afford it, then buy it.
  4. Pay first. Collect money (in a savings or investment account) before you have a chance to spend it.
  5. Don’t fall into the double income trap as a family. If you can, try to maintain your lifestyle on a single income. If one partner loses his job, the family finances remain stable.
  6. Every dollar counts. The money can be exchanged. There are many ways to increase your source of income.
  7. Enjoy what you have before buying new things. Think about the performance curve.
  8. Negotiating your salary can be one of the most important financial steps you will take. Increasing your income is perhaps more important than anything else on this list.
  9. Direct deposit is the boost you need. If you don’t see your check, you are unlikely to issue it.
  10. Don’t let comparisons steal your excitement. Instead, use comparisons to help set goals. (Net value).
  11. Learn to win. Education has a five times greater effect on profitability than any other group in the population.
  12. If you don’t pay cash, you don’t pay on credit. Withdrawing a credit card is as easy as handing over a stack of money. Don’t let your brain fool you.
  13. Prepare a running bucket. Water flowing from below has the same consequences as water that goes up. We often overlook financial leaks (costs, for example) because they aren’t all that glamorous – but they shouldn’t be.
  14. Forget Jones. Use comparisons to motivate healthier habits, not useless expenses.
  15. Talk about money! I know you hate it sometimes (like politics or religion), but there is a lot you can learn from talking to your co-workers about money.
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These are bills you don’t have to pay off quickly

A sudden, steep but highly anticipated recession means we are all desperate to raise money over and over again and whatever we do, we need to pay off that debt as quickly as possible to strengthen our finances for turbulent times ahead. .

For the most part, this is absolutely correct advice. But not always.

Those with serious debt problems should seek advice from charities such as StepChange, which can develop personal plans for amortization or debt relief.

But if you haven’t and managed to manage your bankroll with unexpected cash in Covid, or if the crisis has left you in annoying but largely manageable levels of debt, here are a few strategies you can use.

Repayments: credit cards and overdrafts

We’ve always known credit cards are an expensive way to borrow money, but now, with the new reverse overdraft fee rules that generate a typical interest rate of 40%, overdrafts in particular are very expensive, although they don’t always realize it.

You’re right to pay it off as quickly as possible, and of course that applies to business cards, thresholds, or payroll loans – the most expensive form of mass loan out there.

Although the “snowball” method of paying off the smallest debt for the first time is gaining popularity with its psychological surge, experts urge debtors to focus on paying off the most expensive debt first. This is likely your overdraft. Clean it up and consider canceling setup if possible. It’s not worth it.

With a 0% reduction on old credit card balance transfer transactions, the days back and forth between free credit transactions without ever being paid back are fast fading away.

Millions of people take vacations to pay off debts. What happens when you finish?
Start by putting the balances on all of your cards below half of the total available balance to reduce the impact on your credit score. Then pay it off quickly and firmly.

Maybe you’ll pay it off: mortgage and personal loans

Long-term loans with lower interest rates sometimes don’t even feel like debt, they just sit in our brains under a file called an “Account”, as if we need something constant in life that we can’t escape.

However, paying a few pounds a month on a mortgage or loan can significantly shorten the term and thus the amount of interest you end up paying. But there is a warning.

First, these products often have an early settlement fee (ERC). Mortgages, in particular, are often a burden if you pay more than 10 percent of the amount you owe over a certain period or in the first few years.

Car loans often impose similar fines depending on the type of funding you have arranged to finance. A fixed rate may be required to pay off car financing and may be covered if early settlement is possible.

Second, as soon as you return the money, they leave. So, if you find yourself in the midst of a corrosive economic pandemic, for example, and you need extra cash to filter you out, this is not a flexible product to return some money even if you are a model borrower. By now, you are probably already exercising your vacation options.

Set up an emergency fund of between three and six months for your usual living expenses before embarking on an overpayment journey.

Another question that arises is whether paying off long-term debt at a low interest rate is the best way to use your money. Horrible cash savings today, even with fixed rate offers that block your money for several years, may not be able to pay you back more interest than you saved on a loan.

On the other hand, investing money can outperform our current very low interest rates, especially with such a long investment horizon. Getting the advice of an independent financial advisor is certainly something, although some investment vehicles have ridiculous management fees given today’s volatile stock market.

Don’t pay: student loans

Around 130,000 UK-based alumni made additional voluntary payments worth £ 2,740 each in 2019/20. Another 10,600 returned for an average of £ 4,310 before going into debt.

But it might be a useless exercise.


Student loan companies have been accused of promoting unnecessary payments
Students, starting university this year and receiving full tuition fees and maintenance loans, could owe more than £ 61,500 on departure, Hargreaves Lansdowne estimates. To get it back in full, they will need a salary of £ 53,100 – provided they don’t take career leave or get a raise.

Coming back to the real world, the average annual payout is now under £ 1,000 a year – just £ 120 in the last decade.

Unsurprisingly, the Institute for Tax Research (IFS) found that only 17 percent of graduates will complete their loan in full.

“It’s very worrying to send your kids to college to run into tens of thousands of pounds in debt – and nobody likes the idea that most of it will pay off in their fifties,” said Sarah Coles, a personal finance analyst at Hargreaves. Lansdown.

“However, if we focus on official student loans, we might lose money – and ignore the really problematic commitments students accumulate along the way.

“Most graduates will only pay back their student loans after they are written off. However, many are so worried about taking on debt that they make additional payments.

“For some, this would be a sensible approach based on careful calculation, but for many there is a real risk that this additional payment will be a waste of money,” he warned.

“During their studies, they’ll borrow thousands of pounds which can be returned to bite off.”

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Best student credit cards for September 2020

Whether students are on campus or homeschooled this fall, there are still a lot of costs to return to school. And when checking accounts are no longer available, many of these purchases must be debited to the credit card. But it’s not always easy for a student to get one – especially if they don’t have a steady income.

The reward is a catch-22: important to have but hard to come by – unless you already have one. Student credit cards solve this puzzle by providing options for those with a limited credit rating. Credit card companies take the plunge in the hope that most students will work full time and remain profitable customers for years.

Most credit cards require applicants to have a good credit rating (around 650 or more) and at least several years of credit worthiness. However, you don’t need one to get a student credit card, although some evidence of experience and financial responsibility will help. The publisher checks income sources – including from part-time jobs or parental savings – as well as information on checks and savings accounts to get an idea of ​​the applicant’s savings and expenses.

Apart from the lenient eligibility requirements, the best student credit cards offer the following features:

Special rules for new loans as a minimum late payment fee and no APR penalty
Lower credit limit – usually between £ 500 and £ 2,000
Cashback price
“Fair” APR – usually between 15 and 20%
We have evaluated 19 credit cards offered specifically for students. We have selected four cards that stand out on a number of criteria including APR, credit approval, cashback rewards and easy eligibility requirements. Check out our photos below, as well as some answers to frequently asked questions about student credit cards at the end of this article. We will update this list regularly.

How do student credit cards work?

Student credit cards offer individuals with limited or no credit the opportunity to start building a credit history. They usually have a lower credit line than regular credit cards and have no annual fees. And they often have features that are useful for beginners, including delaying payments, increasing credit limits over time, and resources for credit training. Compensation amounts can be lower than standard refunds and travel credit cards, making student credit cards a lower risk and financial instrument for compensation.

Is a Secure Credit Card a Good Choice for First Time Credit Cardholders?

Secure credit cards provide a way to build or repair credit. However, they are more suitable for people with bad credit ratings than non-credit ratings. Secure credit cards also require prepayment of your credit limit. For a £ 1,000 loan, you have to give the bank £ 1,000. In fact, the bank will return the money on your own – sometimes for an annual fee or high interest rates. If you have no other options, a secure credit card can be used. However, this shouldn’t be the first choice for a starter loan.

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Student Loans

Student funding is the official government fund for tuition fees and living expenses.

Student loans cover course fees and are paid directly to your university or college.

Maintenance loans are designed to help with living expenses such as room and board. The amount you earn depends on your household income, where you live and where you will study. Usually it is deposited directly into your bank account at the start of each period.

Both must be returned upon graduation and earn above the minimum wage.

You will need to apply to the student finance authority in your country. You can do this online at gov.uk/apply-for-student-finance, depending on whether you live in England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland.

Now I go to another university

How many maintenance credits you get depends on where you live. If you’ve signed up for funding but now need to update your details – for example, changing your university – the easiest way to do this is by logging into your student finance account.

How many maintenance loans do I get?

According to currency tip site Save the Student, the average is £ 6,480 per year. Every country in the UK has its own set of rules so it depends on where you live. Complicated and very dependent on household income. For example, in the UK, the maximum loanable for live-at-home students for 2020-2021 is £ 7,747 and the minimum is £ 34, £ 10. If you don’t live outside of London the maximum and minimum amounts are £ 9,203 and £ 4,289 . If you don’t live at home in London that’s £ 12,010 / £ 5,981. In general, you will get the most if your annual household income is below £ 25,000 while the minimum is above the threshold between £ 58,000 and £ 69,000.

My family has experienced a sharp decline in income due to the coronavirus

You may qualify for a higher level of funding. Again the rules of how they differ. In the UK, you can file an “Income Statement for the Current Year” if you believe your household income for the tax year (2020-21) is at least 15% less than the tax year you are inquiring about. to provide details (for those departing in the coming weeks this is 2018-19). This is a similar system in Wales. In Scotland, the Scottish Student Awards Board may reconsider funding for students based on current income projections if income figures fall to a lower grade. Northern Ireland’s income must have decreased by 5% or more to be revalued.

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