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FIRST STUDENT LOAN PAID!!

I had to take a quick break from our credit discussion to announce my first student loan debt has been paid in full!  I am super excited!  I am in the middle of my debt snowball (paying debt down in order from smallest balance to largest).  That particular loan started with a balance of $3,832.  It is now $0!  That was my smallest debt, now on to the next!  Woohooo!

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THE IMPORTANCE OF CREDIT (PART 2)

credit debt Jan 14, 2018

Welcome to part two of the money talk about credit!  I highly recommend reading part one first as this post is meant to be a continuation.  So, now that you have pulled your credit report, let's pull our credit score.  There are a few different ways to do this.  When you go to pull your credit report from the three bureaus, they will ask if you want to purchase your credit score.  You do not have to go this route!  I will always recommend the free options first.  Remember in part one when I said you really have hundreds of reports creditors can use?  The same thing goes for credit scores.  The scores are calculated in multiple ways so there may be variances between the scores you or a creditor pulls.

Favorite Option
Credit Karma!  This is my favorite way to pull my credit score.  You can download the app or go to the website.  The site will ask you a few questions in order to pull your score but it is completely safe and...

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THE IMPORTANCE OF CREDIT (PART 1)

credit debt spending money Jan 06, 2018

According to Investopedia.com, credit is a contractual agreement in which a borrower receives something of value now and agrees to repay the lender at some date in the future, generally with interest.  Now, it would be great if there was nothing on your credit report because you never had to borrow money, but for most Americans, that is definitely not the case.  The goal of this series is to get you acquainted with your credit, the terminology, the importance of paying attention, and how to fix it on your own (you don't need to pay anyone).  Let's get started!

My Story
Before I started this financial journey, I didn't know anything about a credit report or score.  I would get medical bills and never pay them thinking they just went into the abyss after a while.  I figured once they stopped sending me the bills in the mail, they didn't care about them anymore.  So, I went a long as if nothing was happening.  When I was 19, I applied for my...

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NEW YEAR, NEW YOU? HOW BUDGETING CAN HELP!

It's New Year's Eve!  This marks the occasion when everyone decides on their New Year's resolutions.  According to statisticbrain.com, the top resolution is to "lose weight/eat healthy" followed by "life/self-improvements" as number two.  These are great but I want to focus on the third most popular resolution which is "better financial decisions".  I assume you are here because this is where you want to improve.  What if I told you that by focusing on this one goal you can positively impact the other two top resolutions?  It has been proven that money issues cause stress and stress causes health issues.  That knocks out number 2!  But, how is "better financial decisions" linked to losing weight and healthier eating?  Allow me to explain!  One of the cornerstones of being wealthy is budgeting.  Most of the time eating unhealthy (fast food/junk food) is something that can be cut from your budget or minimized.  Therefore,...
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6 TIPS TO AN (UN)STRESSFUL HOLIDAY SEASON

'Tis the season of spending!  The National Retail Federation expects retail sales during November and December to be about $682 billion!  (I think we are in the wrong business)  They expect each consumer to spend an average of $967.13.  This is massive spending!  Most Americans get into a ton of debt during this time and spend the better part of the new year trying to pay it down.  Don't let this happen to you!  In this article, I'll offer six of my top tips to ensure you are prepared for next year and keep your spending in check.
 
Tip #1 - The Holiday Season Comes Every Year
Well, duh, Tiffany!  It may seem like I am stating the obvious but every year people wait until the last minute to plan for it.  This is a disaster waiting to happen!  Not planning throughout the year puts you in a position where you have to scrape together the last few paychecks before the holiday to do all of your shopping.  Talk about stressful!...
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MONEY IS AN EMOTIONAL THING

psychology Dec 10, 2017
I figured this would be an excellent place to start on our journey.  To have control over your finances, you have to first control how you feel about it.  What do I mean?  Well, let's do a quick exercise.  I am going to give you a few words, and I want you to pay attention to your reaction to them.
 
Money. Finances. Debt. 

What type of emotions came up when you saw these words?  Do you automatically think about the mountains of student debt you accumulated over the years?  Your next shopping trip?  An upcoming vacation?  Your car or house?  Did you think about emotions like happiness, regret, anger, or contentment?  The first step is to tune in to these emotions and understand how they got there.  

Did you grow up in a household where your parents were always stressed about money?  How about a household where money was spent without batting an eye?  How about a household where your parents were so frugal you...
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