POSTS WITH TAG: finances

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    Let's face it: We all want to be responsible with our money. But being a parent means being under even more pressure to keep your finances in shape. After all, not only do we want to provide for our children, but we also want to lead by example so our kids grow up to be financially responsible and confident adults.

    That's just one of the many reasons financial experts Dave Ramsey and Rachel Cruze wrote Smart Money, Smart Kids, a guide to raising financially savvy children.

    The well-known host of The Dave Ramsey Show and his daughter recently spoke with us about how moms can create an even rosier financial future for themselves, their family, and the next generation. Here are their top tips.

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    In busy day-to-day mom life, lots of things fall by the wayside, from healthy eating and exercising to putting off doctor appointments and, you know, showering. But when it comes to finances, the repercussions of lackluster money management can affect the whole family when goals such as saving for retirement or paying off high-interest credit card debt are neglected. While making huge, sweeping changes to the way you manage your money is an overwhelming prospect, small changes can reap big rewards, allowing you to maximize your savings for the important stuff and improve your spending habits so you can enjoy the things that matter most. 

    With that in mind, here are 10 smart things you can do for your money in 10 minutes.

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    If you are like most married people, you have told your spouse a little white lie (or four) about money -- "No, honey! That shirt was on sale" or "Yes, dear, I got that bonus this year." We all have different reasons for doing it, but the fact is most of us have been dishonest in some way, from the tiniest of fudges to the biggest of whoppers. When it comes to marriage, George Washington would be ever so disappointed.

    But why do we do it?

    "[People] feel guilty about their spending and debt and try to hide it from their spouse," says Sandy Arons, a certified divorce financial analyst. The problem, of course, is that it almost never works. "Typically the spouse finds out about it at some point and feels betrayed. The trust in the relationship is compromised."

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    Kids are money pits. There is no doubt about it. Kids start tearing through their parents' money the second they start growing in your body and you have to buy a whole new wardrobe that you'll only wear for half a year. And they don't stop until sometime after college.

    Hey mom and dad? If you're reading this, can I borrow 20 bucks? It's for your grandkids, I swear! Just kidding. I think.

    Anyway, having children is indeed a blessing, but dayum, they will eat a hole in your wallet, especially if you make the biggest, most common financial mistake there is when it comes to child rearing ...

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    We all love living vicariously through the lives of the rich and famous, don't we? The huge houses, the bling, the far-flung vacations, the champagne flowing from pure gold kitchen faucets.

    But that's not the reality for most wealthy families. For every loaded celebrity who spends money extravagantly until it's all gone, there are dozens of rich people quietly building their personal fortunes.

    You'd never know how much money they have because they live so simply.

    True, most wealthy people are born into affluence and are taught how to keep their assets growing. But what about the ordinary folks who build their prosperity themselves? What are their secrets? Lucky for you, we got to the bottom of it and boiled it down to 8 money secrets of wealthy families we should all steal -- starting now!

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    Saving for the future is always important -- and never more so than when you have children.

    But much like dieting or exercising, setting money aside may be good for you but isn't always easy or fun. Most people would rather talk about the next hot stock pick than about their will, notes Jeff Romond, president of St. George Financial Partners.

    But establishing a solid financial foundation should be a top priority when you're a parent. Even with the best intentions, it can be hard to figure out where to funnel those funds with so many choices available. But not to worry! We've broken it down for you. (You're welcome.)

    Here are 3 accounts every parent should have

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    Moving back in with our parents. It happens to the best of us. Sometimes, it's out of necessity; sometimes ... it's for all the wrong reasons (free service at Mom's Laundromat, anyone?).

    We asked moms when they thought it was okay to move back in with Mom and Dad (particularly when you've got kids) and when it wasn't, and their answers, though debatable of course, are pretty hard to argue with.

    Here are 15 acceptable reasons -- and 15 pretty unacceptable reasons -- for moving back in with the parents.

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    It really doesn't matter how well off you are -- it's pretty safe to say that every single one of us could probably be a little bit more diligent about saving some of our hard-earned cash versus spending it at every chance we get.

    Sure, having nice things, taking vacations, and dining out at restaurants multiple times a week is fun, but having a cushion set aside "just in case" is definitely something we should all work toward.

    But when it comes to just how far some people will go to save a buck -- be it by pure necessity or plain frugality -- let's just say some are a bit more creative about it than others. While there are plenty of us who are comfortable with the standard "10 percent of your paycheck goes into savings" rule, that simply isn't financially savvy enough for others.

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    Several years ago our circumstances changed quite a bit when my husband left his established job to launch a business. I couldn't have been more supporting of his decision, and I was thrilled that he had the courage to follow his dream in such a big way -- but I hadn't realized how much a drastically reduced salary would impact our daily lives. At first it was enormously challenging, as I'd analyze nearly everything I did in order to determine if it fit within our newly tightened budget. Eventually, however, things greatly simplified: by and large, I just ... stopped spending money on non-essential items.

    These days our budget isn't nearly so cramped. We have discretionary income again, and I don't budget like I used to. I'm also pretty sure my parenting has suffered as a result.

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    I keep a list of stuff I want to buy ... eventually. I keep adding items to it, and it never seems to get any shorter. Why? Because of a competing list: Stuff I have to buy. You know what I'm talking about: Home repairs, summer camp, baby's new shoes. All that stuff responsible grown-ups have to take care of. Derr! STUPID RESPONSIBLE ADULTHOOD RUINING ALL MY FUN. Sometimes those necessities are so boring. I don't mean to complain, but -- oh what the hell. I'm going to complain.

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