Rules to Grow Rich By

I got these tips from CNN”s Money e-magazine. It’s a very useful guide for most of our financial questions.

 

 

Home

  1. For return on investment, the best home renovation is to upgrade an old bathroom. Kitchens come in second. It’s worth refinancing your mortgage when you can cut your interest rate by at least one point.
  2. Spend no more than 2½ times your income on a home. For a down payment, it’s best to come up with at least 20%.
  3. Your total housing payments should not exceed 28% of your gross income. Total debt payments should come in under 36%.
  4. Never hire an electrician or plumber who is going door to door.

Invest

  1. To figure out what percentage of your money should be in stocks, subtract your age from 120.
  2. Invest no more than 10% of your portfolio in your company stock–or any single company’s stock, for that matter.
  3. Aim to build a retirement nest egg that is 25 times the annual investment income you need.
  4. If you don’t understand how an investment works, don’t buy it.

 

 

Plan

  1. If you’re not saving 10% of your salary, you aren’t saving enough.
  2. Keep three months’ worth of living expenses in a bank savings account or a money-market fund for emergencies. If you have kids or rely on one income, make it six months’.
  3. Aim to accumulate enough money to pay for a third of your kids’ college costs. You can borrow the rest or cover it from your income.
  4. You need enough life insurance to replace at least five years of your salary–as much as 10 years if you have several young children or significant debts.
  5. When you buy insurance, choose the highest deductible you can afford. It’s the easiest way to lower your premium.
  6. The best credit card is a no-fee rewards card that you pay in full every month. But if you carry a balance, high interest rates will wipe out the benefits.
  7. The best way to improve your credit score is to pay bills on time and to borrow no more than 30% of your available credit.
  8. Anyone who calls or e-mails you asking for your Social Security number or information about your bank or credit-card account is a scam artist.

Spend

  1. The best way to save money on a car is to buy a late-model used car and drive it until it’s junk. A car loses 30% of its value in the first year.
  2. Lease a new car or truck only if you plan to replace it within two or three years.
  3. Resist the urge to buy the latest computer or other gadget as soon as it comes out. Wait three months and the price will be lower.
  4. Buy airline tickets early because the cheapest fares are snapped up first. Most seats go on sale 11 months in advance.
  5. Don’t redeem frequent-flier miles unless you can get more than a dollar’s worth of air fare or other stuff for every 100 miles you spend.
  6. When you shop for electronics, don’t pay for an extended warranty. One exception: It’s a laptop and the warranty is from the manufacturer.

 

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Motherhood has a very humanizing effect. Everything gets reduced to essentials. ~Meryl Streep

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One Response

  1. good tips joelle! thanks!

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