Hope for your financial life and beyond

The 3 Main Advantages of a Debit Card

advantages of a debit card

Are there advantages of a debit card that makes them better than using a credit card?

Debate rages sometimes in the personal finance world over which one of these payment options is better. I see how both can be used responsibly to assist people with their money management. The key word in that last sentence though was “responsibly.” Of these two options, credit cards by far have the most potential for abuse.

Advantages of a Debit Card

Banks and other financial institutions issue debit cards as a way for customers to access their accounts to pay for goods and services. The card links to your checking account at the bank. When you swipe it at a business, the amount of the transaction is withdrawn from your account to pay the merchant.

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Secret Advice For Teenagers Who Love to Spend Money

You know who you are – teenager who loves to spend money like it’s going out of style. You spend money faster than it takes a Snapchat to disappear. Money comes into your hand one minute and flows out like water the next.

spend moneyAnd you like it that way!

If that’s you, I have some special advice today. It’s unusual, maybe even secret advice. I’m pretty sure you’ve never heard an adult say this to you before. In fact, your parents may hate me for saying this because it might go against how they have instructed you to handle money. So I’m actually running a big risk here.

But before I reveal this big secret about spending your money, you have to promise me something.

The promise I’m asking you to make is to read this entire post. You are going to love what I have to say about spending money but you can’t take it as stand alone advice without understanding the bigger picture. As they say, the devil is in the details. So I’m asking for five minutes of your time to help you avoid failure on this issue.

Ready for the big, secret advice? OK, here goes…

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8 Bible Verses About God’s Love You Should Never Forget

Ever wonder where our capacity to love actually comes from? It’s pretty clear that our ability to love is something that was given to us by God. In fact, the Bible verses about God’s love that I read tell me He is Himself the essence of love and has passed that on to us.

verses about God's loveGranted it’s not always easy loving others. Often times we choose to love others based on how they act towards us. But that’s not how it is with God.

God’s love towards us is unconditional. That means He loves us no matter what. We can’t do anything to reject, or bypass or disown His love. He can’t help it – love is part of His nature. He loves us – all of us – equally and without hesitation.

If you doubt that, just look at these verses about God’s love found in the Bible.

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The Secret Step to Contentment (Philippians 4:11-12)

On Contentment – “Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.” Philippians 4:11-12

practicing contentment

Once upon a time (circa mid-2002), former NBA All-Star Allen Iverson produced a legendary press conference rant about the apparent need to show up for practice. After a first round playoff loss, his coach reprimanded him for missing one practice, maybe two, maybe three…we don’t really know how many.

Iverson argued to the reporters that a discussion about practice was irrelevant compared to his performance in the actual games – in what really mattered. He concluded his practice rant by exclaiming “How can I make my teammates better by practicing?”

There were days in high school when I hated basketball practice. It wasn’t very fun when you were tired or sore. Furthermore, I definitely wondered at times if I was helping my teammates get better. Isn’t that up to them?

But I pushed through all that because I came to realize one thing about practice – it produces greatness.

We aren’t born instantaneously great. Greatness comes slowly over time, as our mind, body and soul learns and adapts to whatever we are pursuing.

In the verse above, the missionary Paul shares with us in the Bible his secret step to contentment. He learned it. This makes me think it didn’t come naturally for him, just like it doesn’t come naturally for me. In other words, he had to practice it.

Contentment Doesn’t Come Easy

For Paul, contentment had to be achieved, through daily submission and practice. His statement is even more compelling considering the up and down circumstances he faced.

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What to Invest in When You are Scared to Invest

There are times when the stock market causes real fear for investors. It’s scary to see the markets and your portfolio value go down day after day. This is especially true for those closer to retirement. At times like that, it’s hard to know what to invest in or whether one should be investing at all.

what to invest in

You can’t discount the power of fear. Even the most seasoned investors get it from time to time. However, those who have been investing for a long time know something that perhaps a beginning investor doesn’t know – fear is not necessarily an excuse to stop investing.

But fear could be something that prompts you to reevaluate what to invest in. Market downturns are a great time to look again at your portfolio and analyze your strategy. Every time I’ve done that, it has actually served to calm me down. It reminds me that I am following sound investing practices that will serve me well in the long run.

There is good news if you are scared of the markets and don’t know what to invest in. There are a couple simple strategies to follow that can help you sleep easier at night. Here are several to consider that will help you put your fears to rest.

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Wondering About the Functionality of Payday Loans?

wondering about the functionality of payday loans

Money is essential to our lives. It is always needed to make ends meet. Simply stated, we cannot do without it in some form or fashion,

Sometimes though, life rears its ugly head – usually through a crisis. We call these emergencies. Hopefully, when these come, you have saved enough in an emergency fund to make it through the financial struggle.

But what if you haven’t? What if there is no money available to you? What if you are so deep in debt, you can’t see a way out? When you are deprived of cash and trapped in a financial calamity, it’s hard to know the right way out. It is an awful scenario.

When you get in this tight of a spot, it’s easy to just spend your days and nights waiting for a miracle to happen. But you have to make some wise decisions and hunt for a resolution to the situation. Being depressed and frustrated is not the solution.

In times like this, some people have turned to securing a payday loan to help them out. This article will share the benefits and risks of this method to help get you out of your crisis.

What are Payday Loans?

Payday loans are short-termed loans. They are used for borrowing small debts for a short period of time, usually for $500 or less. You can usually find them via storefront lenders or online.

Payday loans are most often paid back in one single payment when the borrower receives their next paycheck. They serve as a bridge to cover expenses until you get paid again. The repayment date is usually set two to four weeks from when the loan was made.

If you use a payday loan for your genuine needs and pay it back to the lender according to an agreement, you will definitely be going to have a more positive and fruitful experience. Payday loans do have many controversies linked to them though. So, in order to get benefit from them, you should have to be familiar with both the positive and negative impacts of these loans.

Advantages of Payday Loans

The primary benefit of a payday loan is that you can get fast financial assistance for a short period of time. Some of their advantages are:

No hard and fast terms and conditions required. It sounds so appealing for people in trouble because they do not have time to waste in long and document verifications, faxing or paper procedures.

Easy to access.Payday loans are easily accessible and available to every person. Fast payday loan lenders should not bother about your financial background or credit score.

24/7 customer care service. You won’t have to follow typical bank hours, as online payday loan services are available 24/7. You can approach these websites anywhere, anytime with just a single click. Customer care representatives are always there for financial assistance.

100% secured procedure. Payday loan lenders secure your information. It will remain confidential. Their modern encryption technologies will protect your information and keep it secure.

On the spot approval of the loan. No matter what is your financial background, these loans will be approved quickly soon after your verification.

Online availability of payday loans.Payday loans are very handy because the borrower does not need to go anywhere and search for a loan. They can be found easily online. So many lenders have online websites. You just have to visit these websites and select the appropriate option for yourself. All procedures from the beginning till the end will take place online.

Disadvantages of Payday Loans

When there are so many positive aspects, there must be some cons as well. Everything has its positive and negative features and so do payday loans have. Some of the downsides of payday loans are given below.

Elevated APR and interest rates. This is by far the biggest disadvantage when it comes to payday loans. These kind of loans are much more expensive because interest rates tend to be extremely high. The highest interest on credit cards for example average 28-36 APR%. An average APR of a payday loan is 300 – 500 times more than a regular loan.

Payday loan encourages cycle-of-debts. When a person is unable to return the money by the fixed date, they incur more debt. They will most likely have to take out another loan to repay the previous one. This just sinks them further into debt. The further they go into debt, the tougher the cycle will be to break.

Related Content: How to Get Out of Debt and Win in Five Simple Steps

No de-commitment period. Once you sign the paperwork, there is no backing out. With many bank loans there is a period where you can de-commit from the loan if you have second thoughts. You won’t get this with most payday lenders.

Access to bank account. Some payday lenders want/require access to your bank account. If they don’t get paid, they may try to pull funds from your account. This could result in overdraft charges billed to you for having insufficient funds in your account.

Damage to your credit. Payday loans can be damaging to your credit. This will happen when you can’t pay them back. Ultimately, they could refer you to a collection agency. If that happened, it would be something extremely hard to get your credit score positive again.

What to consider before taking out a payday loan?

Payday loans have a lot of risk. They can be a debt trap that you have a really hard time getting out of. There are better ways to get out of debt and handle life’s emergencies.

Related Content: Emergency Fund Basics: The Step on Which All Other Success Is Built

However, if you choose to go this route make sure you:

•    Are aware of the consequences and how a specific loan works

•    Know the terms and conditions set by the lender

•    Understand what the penalty for the non-repayment is

To read more about them, you can visit this article at Debt.org.

Share a Comment Below: Have you ever taken out a payday loan before? What was your experience? What are the other benefits and risks of payday loans?

How to Push Through the Scary Questions at the Start

ID-10083769Do you want to finish what you start this year? Maybe you have made a New Year’s resolution and aren’t confident you can do it. Or maybe there are simply so many unanswered questions and doubts in front of you it’s becoming overwhelming.

Finishing is huge for our psyche. It gives us so much confidence that we think anything is possible. It releases pressure and tension when we finally reach our goal. Finishing creates momentum and catapults us forward to even greater things.

Related Content: Winning is More Valuable Than Losing

Unfortunately, we don’t start at the finish and get those great rewards. We start our journey at a more logical place – the start.

The start of anything can be a very confusing place to be. It’s exciting and scary all at the same time. And the start is always full of questions like…

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How to Get the Most Out of Christmas

Weeks ago, at the beginning of November, stores already had Christmas decorations on display. I know those stores are just trying to get the most out of Christmas season. But it’s too early at that point for me to think about Christmas.

get the most out of christmasFor me, December 1st officially starts my holidays. That’s because I know that in the 31 days of December, my family will attempt to cram more into each 24-hour period than is usually desired. For me, the annual cramming revolves around two specific lists – my December To Do List and my Present Wish List.

The To Do List for December is very important. It’s filled with kid activities, social get-togethers, Christmas programs and of course shopping. Additionally, home chores are also part of the To Do List. So, because I’m a teacher, I get a “vacation” during Christmas break which gives me a greatly needed window to do these activities and catch up on all that I’ve let slip by.

The other list – the Present Wish List – is all about what I would like to receive on Christmas day during our annual gift exchange. This one is a little tricky and here is why.

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Why Online Loan Applications Can Boost Your Financials

It doesn’t matter how hardworking and frugal you are, life is going to throw you a sudden curveball. An instance like that can change your financial security immediately. Be it some illness, the need for a vehicle, a house renovation or something else, it is not uncommon for such needs to arise.

Oddly enough, they seem to happen exactly when your bank balance is slim. That can leave you scrambling to figure out how to pay for it. If you don’t have an emergency fund set up, you may not have many other options than to see help elsewhere.

And for decades now, the solution to such problems would be a loan.

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Will Cryptocurrency Replace Stocks as a Primary Investing Option?

Have you ever had trouble focusing at work because of market volatility? Is it a challenge for you to sleep at night worrying about the ups and downs of the stock market? Honestly, at times it can be scary. Our investments are at stake and we don’t want to end up on the losing side with those. 

What if I there was a better way to manage and handle your investments while not having to worry about hard cash? Is that possible? Today’s contributor, Ana Farr, Community Manager at ecommerce-platforms.com and Unblock.net believes so. She is here to explain why, in her opinion, it would be better to invest using crytpocurrency rather than stocks.

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15 Bible Verses to Remind Us to Be Thankful

Hidden Nuggets Series #65 – Thankful Bible Verses – “Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For his mercy endures forever.” – I Chronicles 16:34

thankful bible versesI have a confession to make – I often forget how many things I have to be thankful for. It’s much easier for me to let the worries and frustrations of life overshadow all the blessings I enjoy. But doing that often enough only produces a spirit of ingratitude.

So how do I fight against my tendencies?

First off, I have to remind myself routinely to let go of the negative. Nothing good comes when I daily choose to focus on all that is wrong with my life or the world.

But an even more powerful strategy is to meditate on the concept of thankfulness. And the source that I constantly turn to for that is the Bible.

So I’d like to share with you my favorite verses about giving thanks from the Bible. Most are simply stand alone verses that express thankfulness to God for what he has done or is doing. King David was really good at that, as you will see from the multiple selections from the book of Psalms.

What’s great about these verses is that they really don’t need commentary. The message or challenge in each verse is pretty clear.  I’m just thankful Bible verses like this exist to keep me thinking the right way. [Read more…]