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This Week Around The Web

1. 3 Ways to Get Ahead Using Personal Loans

Club Thrifty — Greg wants everyone to free themselves from debt. But you must be smart about it. And sometimes using a personal loan is smart. He says, “if you use a personal loan wisely, it can actually help you to get out of debt faster.” His first example is paying off credit card debt.

If you have a high interest rate credit card loaded with debt, you can get a personal loan and pay it off. The beauty is, you can cut the interest rate in half using a loan. His example is 12.99 percent on the card versus 6.0 percent on the loan. But there is a catch. You can’t keep using the card. That defeats the purpose. It also increases your debt. If this idea intrigues you, Debt.com can help you obtain a personal loan.

2. New Tools Help Identity Theft Victims Fight Back and Recover

Money Talks News — Identity theft is something we must all deal with. It’s not a random or rare occurrence anymore. It’s a calculated act perpetrated by professional criminals and sometimes even family members. As Jim says, “It’s not a question of if but when you will become a victim of identity theft.”

The new tools come from the Federal Trade Commissions Identity Theft.gov website. Jim quotes FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez: “The FTC’s new IdentityTheft.gov website empowers consumers to fight back faster and more effectively against identity thieves.” Debt.com can also assist you with our Credit Power tool.

3. 5 Ways You’re Sabotaging Your Budget

Shoeaholic No More — Guest blogger Allison wrote this post. She admits that “Budgeting isn’t always easy.” Unfortunately, it becomes even harder when you make these five mistakes. The first one is: “You’re not keeping track of every expense.” The key word there is every. That means daily coffee or 5 Hour Energy drink purchases. Those little purchases can ruin your budget.

The third one is: “Your budget and goals are unreasonable.” This is important, because many people set goals that are too lofty. And when they fail, they become frustrated and quit budgeting. Set practical goals. Allison also offers helpful tips at the conclusion of each section. Here’s another post on 3 Ways Your Weekend is Busting Your Budget.

4. 7 Ways to Put Financial Stress to Rest

Young Adult Money — Erin points out that a study by the American Psychological Association revealed “72% of adults feel stressed about their finances at least some of the time.” With that statistic in mind, she came up with seven ways we can ease our stress. The second one is: “Figure out a spending plan.”

The plan should focus on how much money you want to spend on each category in your budget. Once you figure that out, you can decide on your savings options. But again, you must set realistic goals or your best attempts will probably fail. Here’s another post on financial stress — and how you should deal with it.

5. How Much Do You REALLY Need in Your Emergency Fund?

Money Ning — Experts agree that an emergency fund is necessary. They don’t agree on how much money people should sock away. Nevertheless, a study by Bankrate showed that only 38 percent of Americans have enough saved for “unexpected expenses”, such as car repairs. So let’s start saving.

Connie says the “rule of thumb” is having three to six months of expenses saved — but six is better. As an example, she notes: “if your expenses amount to $3,000 each month, you should aim to save $18,000.” That’s a lot and may seem unreasonable. To reiterate what’s become a theme here — set realistic goals. If you don’t have a fund and experience an emergency, try these money making tips.

Posted in: Budgeting & Saving, News