Strictly for couples: 7 Penny-pinching ideas when true love blossoms

True love means huge expenses. Oops! This must be the most unromantic way to start an article but seriously I can’t help it. Most of my friends (who are in serious relationships) are either planning for a romantic vacation or intending to buy a house. And those whom I don’t find planning for a vacation or a new home, are busy in making wedding plans.

Vacation, wedding and home-buying process are truly very costly affair. You need to pinch pennies wherever you can in order to make your dreams come true. If you aren’t sure where to start, then check out these 7 ideas to get started.

1. Evaluate your debts and create a repayment plan

If both of you have debt issues in life, then the very first thing that needs to be done is a comprehensive analysis of the overall financial situation. Find out how much both of you owe to your creditors. Your next task will be to calculate total income (your and your partner’s) and then devise a repayment strategy that will work. Create a strategy wherein you can cut down interest rate and get rid of debts quickly.

2. Come up with cheap yet romantic dating ideas

Stop going out to classy restaurants and music concerts. They can make your bank account dry within a month. If you’re really interested in saving money, then think about the cheap yet fun date ideas. For example, you can have a picnic at the beach. Or, you can enjoy a happy hour dinner at your favorite restaurant. That’s not all. You can take a pedal boat ride in a local lake and spend a beautiful day too.

3. Create a joint account and a budget for bills

Do you guys live together? If yes, then create one joint account. Both of you keep a certain amount of money there. Use it to pay monthly bills. Create a budget based on that amount and then pay together for all the bills. This will help to accelerate the saving process as well.

4. Move in together instead of living separately

This will help you share rents, living expenses, manage utility bills easily. This will help to save a huge amount of money. Most importantly, it will help you decide if both are really made for each other. Here are a few tips that may come handy before moving together:

  • Buy used furniture instead of new ones
  • Give a coat of spray paint to give a new look to used furniture
  • Create cleaning solutions with natural ingredients and use them
  • Buy necessary and non-perishable items on sale and in bulk
  • Cook together instead of ordering out

5. Handle your insurance policies carefully

High insurance premiums can affect your finances. Yet, this is something you can’t ignore. Neither can you opt out of insurance policy. So, take care of your health and adjust your insurance policy. Find out why you’re paying a high premium first and then take a constructive step.

6. Both of you start using cash instead of credit cards

Stop your habit of swiping credit cards for shopping or paying your bills. Your partner may squirm a little bit but at the end of month both of you’ll save money. Always remember that this plastic card can harm your money seriously. So, it’s better to depend on cash.

7. Get rid of student loans to save more

Try to consolidate both of your student loans. Always remember, if you’re planning to buy a new home, your credit score and debt-to-income ratio will play a big part in it. The sooner you get rid of this loan, the better for your financial life. Both of you can save the origination fees and other penalties.

Last but not the least,

Respect your differences. Both of you are separate human beings with different thoughts and perspectives. So, it is but quite natural that both of you’ll have different financial outlook. In that case, sit together and try to find out a midway. If your spouse loves to spend, then make sure you save money. You can even think about a strategy. If your spouse really can’t save money, then ask him/her to pay all the bills. You on the other hand will save money for the wedding or the vacation or for the down payment of a new home. At least, your spouse will spending money for the necessary expenses only.

Working mom: 41 Must-read tips to rule money and family like a queen

tips for working mom

“I firmly believe in love at first sight as

I fell in love with my mom

Immediately after opening my eyes”

For my mom, I’m her world and universe. I am her life. And for me, my mom is the superwoman of my life since she can solve any problem – no matter how complex or trivial it is. The moment I get tensed, my mom will read it from my eyes or hear it from my voice, and then start shooting one question after another until I reveal the entire story. The best part is she won’t even miss out the smallest details. Ugh!!! But by the time the story is finished, my mom is ready with her bouquet of solutions. Love you mom!!! I don’t know what I would have done without you.

Tips for all the working moms

Mom has always loved her career. She used to always tell me,

A woman should always earn money since she doesn’t know what lies in her future

Even now, when I’m all grown up and working, she tells me – “Don’t consider your hubby or boyfriend as your bank. Be self-dependent and organize your finances on your own”.

Anyway, coming back to the main subject, my mom has always balanced her career and family indeed very well. Yes, she has made some mistakes but those have been learning lessons. This week I’m dedicating my blog to all the working moms. I’ll be sharing some financial tips that’ll help all the working moms to balance career, home and money perfectly. My mom has benefited a lot from these tips. I’m sure, all the working moms will also benefit from these tips.

Tips

  1. Dedicate one day to complete your personal work.
  2. Utilize the break times smartly. Fix doctor appointments or shop all the daily necessities during that time.
  3. Share your problems with other working moms. You might get some solutions to your problems. Besides, you can learn from their experience.
  4. Work smartly at office and try to plan your leaves in advance.
  5. Keep stuffs where you’re most likely need them like your car. Stuffs that you need are: baby wipes, tissue papers. dry foods, towel, a set of clothes, games, etc.
  6. Do the prep work during the night, mainly when your kids have slept. Arrange the clothes you and your kid will be wearing next day.
  7. Cook lunch during night and prepare breakfast even before your kids wake up.
  8. Always have the mindset to arrive everywhere early.
  9. Take some time out and socialize with your friends.
  10. Have a romantic dinner when your kids have gone to birthday party.
  11. Create a master calendar in your email and schedule all the upcoming events there.
  12. Create a folder wherein you can keep all the emergency contacts.
  13. Create a separate cabinet (if possible in kitchen) wherein you can store all the medicines.
  14. Stop trying to be a perfectionist. Nobody is nor anybody can be.
  15. Dedicate at least one hour for relaxation. You’re not a machine

Financial tips

  1. Stay updated about the tax changes and file your tax returns on time.
  2. Opt for the 529 savings plan when kids are small.
  3. Create a file and keep all your financial documents there.
  4. Sell old clothes, books and toys. You don’t need them anyway.
  5. Shop diapers and wipes online.
  6. Don’t spend a fortune for your kids since you feel guilty about not giving enough time.
  7. Keep some money for only yourself. This will come handy if you go for a divorce.
  8. Live within your means even if you’re earning pretty well.
  9. Do save money and create an emergency fund. You can need it anytime.
  10. Buy life insurance policies so that your kids are taken care of.
  11. Talk about finances with your partner. Share the financial load together.
  12. Buy a disability insurance policy. It is a must.
  13. Save for the golden years of your life.
  14. Automate your payments so that your debts are taken care of.
  15. Check your credit report once in every quarter.
  16. Set a budget when you’re planning for a vacation.
  17. Create DIY gifts for the holiday seasons.
  18. Teach your kids about money through games so that they can help you in future.
  19. Save in every part of your house. Sometimes, small changes can make a big difference.
  20. Try to lower interest rates on your credit cards so that you’ve to pay less.
  21. Take a job which is close to your home.
  22. Go for online jobs since you can do them even when your kids are sleeping.
  23. Shop more with cash as it will help you reduce credit card debts.
  24. Do your banking online. Don’t leave everything to your spouse.
  25. Look for coupons so that you can save on shopping.
  26. Ask for a hike or promotion if you really deserve it.

So, these were some tips that my mom used to use when she was busy managing family and career smartly. Do you have any other idea to share? What are those? Would love to know about them.

5 Steps you must not forget to take after the tax season is over

The tax season is finally over. Thank god! This whole month I was just running to my tax consultant with piles of documents every other day. The agony of filing tax papers, rushing to office, taking care of my house and making time for blogging was too much for me. Utterly relieved to see that I don’t have to crunch numbers every evening now. I’m finally done.

Although I’ve completed a big task, yet I can’t start celebrations right now. There are a few other things that every taxpayer like me needs to take care of before moving on with life. Curious to know about them? Just read this blog carefully.

Steps you should take after filing tax

Have a look at these 5 steps which I suggest you take every month.

1.Take care of your tax papers: Don’t throw away your tax papers until your payment has been properly processed or you’ve received a refund from the IRS. If anything goes wrong and you need to file tax again, then these papers will come handy.

My father used to save all the tax filing papers for at least 10-12 years. Like a dutiful daughter, I also save my tax papers but electronically. It works for me and saves my time too.

2. Use the IRS2Go app: I’m a lucky woman this year. I’ll get a tax refund. Yeppie! I’m so excited, This is the first time I’ll get a refund. So, every other day you’ll find me checking out IRS2Go app at least once a day. By the way, did I tell you that IRS2Go is an awesome app? Really, I’m falling in love with it. All you need to do is give your SSN, tax filing status, and the total amount you’ll get as refund. You’ll get a good idea about your tax filing status.

You know what’s the best part of checking your tax filing status? You can be rest assured that everything is fine. And if there is any problem, then you can take care of it before it is too late. You won’t have to pay a tax penalty.

3. Ask for a payment plan: Are you facing a financial crunch? Is your tax bill more than what you expected? If yes, then request for a repayment plan as soon as possible. There’s an online payment agreement application option you can use. Obviously, you can use this option when you meet the criteria.

Once you get a payment plan, make sure you don’t break it by any chance since it will only increase your financial troubles.

4. Pay your tax please: You have done all the calculations. Good. Now, it’s time you pay your tax. Use your debit card or a credit card to pay your tax. Don’t just keep them for online shopping or booking hotels. Use these cards for real purpose too. You can pay your tax through electronic checks too.

5. Get ready for the next season: Learn from your past mistakes. For instance, if you didn’t take advantage of tax deductions in the last season, then make sure you don’t do this stupid mistake in the next financial year. Keep all the financial papers and documents with yourself. Read articles on how to save tax throughout the year and use them. If you’re just plain bad in maths, then there’s only one thing you can do. And that is, hire a tax consultant.

So this was my take on what you need to do after filing your tax return. What are you planning to do now that the tax filing task is done and over?

5 Costly shopping mistakes to avoid at supermarket

Girls love shopping and end up spending a fortune at the supermarket. You must have heard this line thousand times from your male friends. Next time they give you the same line, just say – “Come back to real life”.

According to the stats of U.S Department of Agriculture, a family spends $1300 on an average at supermarkets. Grocery shopping is making a big hole in family budgets. And adding fuel to the fire, several families spend more than what they ought to when shopping at supermarkets.

5 Mistakes to avoid at supermarkets

I love you all. And I don’t want that you make a similar kind of mistake like others. So, this week I’m going to give you a list of mistakes you must avoid when shopping at supermarkets.

1. Shopping to fulfill your weekly requirements: When you shop only for your daily or weekly needs, you end up paying the full price. You don’t get discounts. Neither do you get any chance to fully utilize the discount offers.

Tip:

Stock up items in advance: Planning is extremely important. It helps you take advantage of the sale offers. You can get items at 50% to 80% of the full price. The best idea is to buy those items which (a) can be kept at your freezer or preserved at your pantry (b) will be used in almost every month. Check stores’ weekly sales flyers or use apps like Flavado wherein you can find out what items are on sale at local stores.

2. Getting lured by the store marketing tactics: The stupid “buy 10 for $10” offers – Oh! how much I hate these offers. And quite surprisingly, my friends and even my parents jump on these offers. I don’t understand the logic behind spending $10 for 10 items especially when I can buy a product at $1. What’s the point in wasting $9 on the products you don’t even need?

Tip:

Jump on these offers only when you actually need all the items. Most importantly, please don’t buy cocktail sauce from the department which sells seafood. You can get less expensive bottles from sauce aisle.

3. Shopping as per the recipe: Many of my friends shop as per the recipes. This is major mistake since you won’t get all the ingredients at discount. In fact, chances are higher that you’ll get only one item at discount.

Tip:

Shop and then plan your recipe: Buy what you get on discount. Obviously, I’m not telling you to buy even those items which you won’t even eat. Buy a few items and then create a recipe. If you need help, then you can ping me or search the Internet.

4. Buying the same brand again and again: My mother is a brand addict. She needs to buy that same product again and again. And, she needs to spend a good amount on a particular brand every month. If you’re like my mom, then congrats. You’re wasting hundreds of dollars per month.

Tip:

Just move your eyes little bit. Look at the items stocked at the upper and lower shelves. You’ll find that same products are available at less price. Do little bit experiments. Choose the alternative brands and use them for a month. I bet they won’t disappoint you. Still, if you’re uneasy, then use your smartphone and check the online reviews of other brands.

5. Buying readymade packets : These are my personal favorites as well. You can gobble up these items within just a few minutes. But, there is downside of buying these items as well. First, you can’t retain them longer than a few days. Besides, these washed and properly cut veggie packets are very costly. You pay 3-4 times more than the actual price of the whole veggies.

Tip:

Don’t be too lazy. You get various of slicers nowadays. Use them to cut veggies and fruits instead of spending double or triple amount of money on packaged foods. Eat fresh vegetables and stay healthy.

Last words

Do you usually shop only at one supermarket? If yes, then change this habit soon. Don’t limit yourself to only one supermarket. Rather, explore other supermarkets as well. You’ll get variety of other options there. Plus, you can get new sections there. Who knows, you can pick some good deals within your budget and save on groceries.

4 Tricks to be the mistress of money management in 2015

“A Woman’s best protection is a little money of her own”

Well, well, well; the International Women’s Day had come and gone. The ‘one day celebration’ is over and girls have gone back to their normal, dull and boring lives. And this includes me too. Ugh!!!

Being a woman is difficult, no matter where you live. As a daughter, mother or a wife, you’ve to take care of both your family and career. And men, please understand that this is not as easy as it sounds. Technically, we have to take care of everything and that too for free. Okay, we get paid for our 9-5 job. But, what about those tasks which we do beyond the 8 hour work schedule? Just give it a thought.

4 Tricks to be the perfect mistress of finances

Although I’m proud to be a woman, yet it can’t be denied that we lag behind men when it comes to money management. Men earn more than us. In fact, if you look at the statistics, then you’ll realize that women make earns only 82% of men’s income. And, with each passing year, the wage gap is only increasing.

Women face more challenges than men. These challenges often become obstacles to a bright financial future. But if they can shift their focus from the obstacles to financial empowerment, then I think situation will be much better. Women would be able to become the perfect mistress of finances.

It is not that you need to do a MBA to become financially empowered. All you need to do is learn some tricks that you can use in every stage of your life to embrace money.

Check out the 4 tricks which every woman must know to be the mistress of finances.

1. Use Internet instead of men when it comes to money management

Men face financial challenges like us. They also lose jobs, get into debt and file bankruptcy. Like women, they also need financial advice. So, instead of banking on the fact that men would come and solve your financial issues, start looking for an alternative solution. And that is Internet where you’ll get lots of information on:

  • Financial tools
  • Credit card application process
  • Debt solutions
  • Budgeting tricks
  • Industry updates
  • Market value of your home
  • When and how to file your income tax returns
  • Shopping deals
  • Your bank balance

The list would go on and on.

Whenever you’re in financial crisis, just type your questions in different search engines. You’ll get the best financial advice.

2. Never use money to cure your sour mood

Shopping is the best medicine for a bad mood. And it works, but only for a short period of time. Besides, you tend to spend more when you’re in a bad mood. So, what’s the solution. Channelize your anger to something you love doing apart from shopping. Like I do cooking to vent out my frustration. Likewise, you think about something that makes you feel good without splurging.

Do something that will help you earn respect amongst your peers. Use your creativity to do something good.

3. Spend less than what you earn to create an emergency fund

You’ll see that a lot of your friends are busy in being a fashionista. They’re constantly upgrading their wardrobe, accessories, shoe and bag collections periodically. Don’t start competing with them. You would never be able to create a fund that would help you meet expenses when:

  • You lose your job
  • You face a medical emergency

Remember, just one unexpected bill is enough to take a huge credit card debt. You’ll be in a financial hole even before realizing it.

4. Don’t hurry to get married. Wait till both of you’re debt free

Marriage is a union of souls and finances. Understand this fact right now. So if your boyfriend is in debt, then wait for a few months first. Let him get out of debt and then tie the knot. If required, sign a pre-nuptial agreement in advance. They’re not only for the wealthy people.

And don’t waste all your savings on your wedding. I know lots of women want to have an extra-ordinary wedding. They splurge like never before. But what they forget is the fact that it is possible to have an extra-ordinary wedding on a small budget too.

Takeaway: Believe that you’re a financially smart woman

I have met a lot of women who suffer from underconfidence. They feel vulnerable and make more financial mistakes. So, whenever you feel low, just utter this mantra “I’m a financially smart woman”. Once you feel stronger, you would be able to think more clearly about your goals.

4 Scenarios when it is a bad idea to take out a loan

I love money. Sometimes, more than my boyfriends (lol). Okay, not more than my boyfriends but I do have a soft corner for it. And, I can’t stand when people misuse it.

Often I see people applying for loans without even seriously thinking about the pros and cons. Certainly, loans will help you buy expensive items like cars and homes. But, if you really don’t have financial means to pay off a loan, then I would advise you to stay away from it. An unaffordable loan will only sink your financial boat without even giving you a safety-valve.

Here are the 4 scenarios when you must avoid taking out a loan by all means.

The bank asks you to bring a co-signer

You know when a bank asks you to bring a co-signer? It’s when it doesn’t have any trust on your borrowing capability. Even if your bestie or parents are ready to be a co-signer, you shouldn’t take the money. Get the facts correct. You’re not eligible for the loan. This is the hard reality. So, it’s better you don’t borrow money. Rather, find out the reason why you’re not eligible for the loan. Fix your credit so that you can qualify for the loan on your own merit.

Tip: Leave friends out of this loan since you would probably ruin their credit as well.

2. You want to have a lavish wedding

Wedding is a lifetime event? Really? To me, it’s sounds funny especially when 50% marriages end in divorces. Plus, I really can’t understand the logic behind paying wedding bills for years. I mean, what’s the point of getting into debt after making the wedding vows? Besides, there is no guarantee for anything. And there is no guarantee for marriage as well. So, are you willing to spend a fortune just for one day enjoyment?

Tip: If you’ve the financial means to have a lavish wedding, then please have a modest wedding and save for your honeymoon. Don’t get married on other’s money and regret later.

3. Your credit is not in good shape

You can get a loan even when your credit is not in a very good shape. But, you’ll have to pay much more than people with good credit. Reason? You’re not a credible borrower. Banks will charge more and you’ll pay a bigger amount for your monthly payments.

Tip: If you really need a loan, save money and build credit simultaneously. Once your credit gets in good shape, apply for a loan immediately.

4. You want to pay for the much needed vacation

Oh! Every cell in your body is shouting “vacation, vacation and vacation”. Your mind and body – both are exhausted. But wait a minute, don’t plan for a vacation right now. If you don’t have money, then just postpone it. Vacation is for pleasure and fun. It’s the time to spend some quality time with your family. It’s not the time to invite financial stress in your life. So, unless you’ve the confidence to repay the loan immediately after vacation, it’s better to look for gateways that are very near to your home.

A few more words

Yes, you can obviously borrow against your retirement savings. But, there are some factors which you need to consider. For instance, how soon you can pay off the loan or when you’ll retire from job. There is another factor which you must consider and that is the purpose of the loan. If you wish to take out the loan for buying a house, then it is still justifiable. But, if you’re considering to take out the loan just to pay your credit cards, then please don’t do it.

What are the perks of having a 800 plus credit score?

Ever since I have started working as a financial writer, I have been flooded with questions on how to fix credit score, how to get a loan with poor credit score or what are the ways to pay off debt with poor credit score. In all these 3 questions, one thing is common and that is credit score.

I have written tons of articles on these topics and answered thousands of readers’ queries regarding how to repair credit. But, surprisingly nobody has ever asked me how to attain 800+ credit score. May be, people think it is out of their reach. But, I don’t think so, at all.

Tricks to have a 800 plus credit score

Yes, I’m not joking. You too can have a 800 plus credit score and you don’t need to be a financial expert for this. What you actually need is to do is follow one single mantra

“Always pay your bills on time to make your credit shine”

Now, the problem is how to pay your bills always on time. Well, here are the 7 tricks which you can use:

  1. Pay your bills as soon as they arrive
  2. Create a budget and allocate funds for bill payments
  3. Mark the last day for bill payment in your calendar
  4. Strikeout holidays in your calendar since you can’t pay bills on those days
  5. Have the required bill-paying supplies in your hand
  6. Check your calendar every day so that you don’t forget to pay bills
  7. Set up automatic bill payment system with banks

Timely bill payments help you prove yourself as a responsible consumer. You can avoid late fees, harassing collection calls, fines and penalties. What’s more important is that you can have a clean credit report, which is a must for achieving a 800 plus credit score.

Perks of having a 800 plus credit score

Believe me when I say that life becomes fabulous once you have a 800 plus credit score. I know empty words won’t convince you. I won’t even try to do that. All I would request you is to check out the 5 perks of having a 800 plus credit score.

Perk 1: Lenders would love to join your hands

When you’ve a 800 plus credit score, lenders would jump to give you a mortgage loan. Yes, you can get a loan any day you want. Lenders know this fact very well that you’re a responsible credit borrower. You’re less likely to default on a loan, which means lenders have a 99% chance to get back their money.

You’re a dream borrower. Lenders are always in search of such borrowers. So you can practically obtain any loan from all the banks. Just make sure you’ve a regular income.

Perk 2: You’ll get fantastic credit card offers

You don’t need to have a 800 plus score to get a credit card. Yes, I know that. Even a person with terrible score can qualify for a secured credit card. But, the higher your credit score, the better chance you have to qualify for the best plastic cards in the country.

Yes, you’ll get the best credit card offers in any part of the country. You’ll get features like reward programs, concierge service, etc. Not only that, you can qualify for credit cards with low APRs too.

Perk 3: You can get the job you want

Now we all know how some employers check your credit report before offering a job. Yes, it’s not enough to be the best student of the college anymore. Your superb grades won’t of any help if you have poor money management skills. Employers want to offer job offers who are smart money managers. After all, if you can’t manage your household finances, then how would you even try to manage a vast company’s finances? This is especially the case when you’re trying for a government job.

A 800 plus credit score can help you get your dream job. Here’s a perfect example of that.

You’re trying for a government job. There are 2 other candidates who are trying for this job as well. You guys have the same qualification but there is a difference in credit score. Your credit score is 805 and the other candidates’ scores are 650 and 710 respectively.

In this particular scenario, you’ll get the first preference. The second preference will be given to the candidate with 710 credit score and the candidate with lowest credit score will get the last preference.

So, what is your current credit score? What steps are you taking to improve it? What kind of problems are you facing? What will be your advice for others? Feel free to share them with me and readers.

5 Spicy tips to be the Masterchef at your home without scratching your pocket

Cooking is my second love. It is my second home where I relax and feel comfortable. Like writing, it’s something which comes out of me naturally and spontaneously. And I love to experiment and explore it whenever I can. Just love the whole experience of creating sumptuous dishes and surprising friends with my culinary skills.

Now before I go on and on about my love for cooking, let’s talk about the topic on which this post is all about.

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but the theme of my blog is money. In my last post, I have talked about the tricks to become a good financial writer and this post I’m going to share my take on how to save money on cooking. And in my next post also, I’ll be covering a new topic related to money but with a twist. Hopefully, you won’t be bored and can save some bucks as well.

5 Spicy tips to save money while cooking

Here are some spicy tips that can help you save money while cooking

1. Cook at low flame

No one loves to eat overcooked beef or burnt veggies. So whenever you’re frying anything, cook at low flame. Food will be cooked evenly and you can also save money. Cook beef (especially tougher cuts which are available at less) low and slow till it becomes medium rare. It will be moist in the inside and crisp in the outside.

2. Use easily available ingredients

You don’t have follow a recipe line by line and you don’t necessarily need to use all the ingredients. Substitute pricey ingredients with the alternate ones. For instance, there are some delicacies wherein saffron is added to enhance the color. You can skip this ingredient altogether and follow the other steps of the recipe.It would hardly make much difference unless you’re participating in Masterchef USA.

3. Use noodles to turn your leftover into a meal

Have a bowl of soup from your last night’s party? Don’t know what to do with it? Just chop some veggies, onions, bell peppers and tomatoes. Sauté them with noodles and add them into soup. You can even added boiled chicken cubes into it. You’ll have a yummy meal within 15-20 minutes.

4. Don’t throw away dried lemons

Lime is a great cooking ingredient. It can add a new life to your otherwise tasteless dish. But what if your lemons have dried? Should you throw it away? Nopes. Squeeze the juice and keep it in a container. Store it in the refrigerator. You can use the juice later.

5. Use leftovers for your lunch

Okay, I use this trick a lot. Whenever, I’m cooking dinner, I cook a little extra. I keep this extra food in a container and take it to office the next day. For instance, whenever I’m making salad, I make it little extra for lunch. Usually, I toss this salad with chicken and make a nice sandwich. And, let me tell you, it really tastes nice. Besides, I don’t have to wake up early in the morning to make my lunch.

If your meal is incomplete without a dessert, then always have a fruit in your refrigerator. My money saving tip will be to buy seasonal fruits. Just take it out after you’ve finished your meal. Sprinkle some sugar and add a dollop of cream on top of it. This is much healthier and cheaper than what you get at popular restaurants.

Have any more ideas in your creative mind? Share it with me and my readers. Would love to use tips to be a better Masterchef at my home.

7 Awesome tricks to be the best financial writer

Okay, this is my second post. And I’m just too excited about it. Uh – the ethereal feeling of pouring your heart out. Anyway, coming back to what I was saying; I have been working as a financial writer for the last 5-6 years now. In the past few years, I have learned a lot – some from my mentors and others in a hard way. 🙁

So, this post is dedicated to those who want to take content writing as a career. If you want to become a financial writer, then this post is for you.

Tricks to be the best financial writer

Critics say that it’s not sexy to be a financial writer. My answer is, it may not be the sexiest profession in the world, but it is a challenging job. Writing content on hard core finances in a very simple language is not that easy as it sounds. But when people comment on your articles, express their gratitude over how your content helped them to plan finances, you feel good. Actually, more than good.

Best rules the world. Hence, everyone wants to become the best student, best employee, best cook, best writer and so on. If you want to be the best financial writer, then here are the 7 tricks that may help you to be one.

  1. Choose a trendy subject: Finance is not as entertaining as movies. Plus people are really not interested to read a boring subject. If you really want people to read your articles, then the first thing you need to do is choose a trendy topic. You can find out a trendy topic from here – Buzzsumo app. Just create a free account here and then start searching for a topic that are trending in the web. You can also use Google Trends as well.
  2. Give a nice title: Title will do half the job. So, frame a title which evokes curiosity amongst readers. Add numbers as they make your title appealing. Keep it within 65 characters and 6 words if possible.
  3. Give quotes of real people: This is one of the most best ways to breathe a new life to boring and uninteresting financial topics. Use quotes of real people in your article. These ‘real people’ can be some renowned financial experts or common people. Usually, it becomes tough to make real people open up their mouth on their financial problems. They feel their friends and relatives will judge them. So, if you can get genuine feedbacks from real people, then quote the statements of financial experts.
  4. Make your content scannable: People won’t spend hours to read your article, especially web content. Neither do they have a huge time or patience. So, try to make your article scannable. Include sub-headings, give bullets, highlight the important phrases in the article. Give a proper conclusion – it can be a summary of the article or an open-ended question (works best when you want to get comments).
  5. Give stats and numbers: You’re dealing with financial concepts. So, the more number and stats you give in an article, the better. It will make your article more real and researched one. People will relate to it. Yes, this is a hard task since you’ve to research a lot. The best trick would be to interview some industry experts.
  6. Target easy and simple words: You’re not here to showcase how good you’re at English. You can write a novel or a play for that. This is real world where real people would read your article. And, not all the real people would be equally good at English.You would be considered as a good writer when even a student of class 6 can understand what you’ve written. So use simple and colloquial words to make it easy to read. Don’t use flowery words. But, don’t produce a boring article. It will send readers to sleep within a few seconds.
  7. Include images and videos: Idea is to make your article visually attractive. Include images in the article to attract readers. Make sure you don’t use duplicate images. Edit or change those images little bit. If you can, include videos .

Takeaway

What differentiates a writer from a bad one is presentation – the art of presenting even a boring topic in a nice way. So, work on that department as well.

So, this was my take on what can help to become a good financial writer. If you know any other trick, then do share it. It’ll help a lot of ‘wannabe’ writers and me of course.

My blog! My first baby

My blog, my first baby

The idea to start my blog has been brewing in my mind ever since I started working as a financial content writer. And after almost 6-7 years of working as a writer and editor, here I’m with my first blog – kissyourmoney.com.

My first blog – An ode to my readers

After reading, writing and interacting with you guys in the last few years, I feel like I know so much about you. I know about your dilemmas, trials and tribulations. I know about your families and friends and yet, I’ve not done much for you.

This blog is dedicated to all my readers, without whose support and encouragement, I wouldn’t have reached where I’m today. I’m starting this blog to say “Thank you” for being my support system. I hope our bond becomes stronger through this blog.

My first blog has to be about money. There is no doubt about it. This is my domain, my forte. And, my blog will explore it in whatever way possible.

In the last few years, I have interacted and solved your problems within professional boundaries. But here, for the first time I’ll write about my experiences also – my hardships, my struggles, my triumphs and failures. And I’ll write a lot on various facets of finances as well – be it personal finance, career, investments, frugal life, mortgage; you name it all. And you, my lovely readers are welcome to share your views and experiences as well.

Thank you my readers! I owe this blog to you

I had a great time in the last 6-7 years. There were ups and downs. But you guys were a savior. Thanks. So, how can I forget you in my first blog? I’ve learnt a lot while working as a content writer. But, I have learned more from you guys – the complications we face in our financial life, the mistakes we do, the steps to overcome them and so on. You’ve taught me a lot. Can’t thank you enough.

This blog is an ode to my readers – my teacher, my critic and my follower. So, you’re welcome to share your thoughts, experiences and anything related to finances. I’ll always appreciate it when you guys write something where everyone can relate to. After all, life is all about Connections.

Thanks for taking time to read my blog.

Happy surfing!!!