How to Set Up an IRA

If you don’t have access to a 401K, an IRA is a great option. All you need is earned income, and you are off to the races. An IRA stands for an Individual Retirement Account, and in 2015 you can contribute up to $5500 if you are under 50 in this account.

If you don’t have access to another retirement account like a 401(k), then your contribution might be tax-deductible. You would need to run your situation by an accountant, because each person's situation is uniquely different. If you can contribute to a 401(k) at work, then a % of your contribution might be tax-deductible. You can look this all up online as well – there are tons of articles to point you in a good direction.

Think of it as part of your savings strategy. If you can’t contribute $5500, maybe you can contribute $25 a month, or $100, or even just $10. Whatever you can contribute will be helpful towards your goal.

The most popular places to set up an IRA are Fidelity, Vanguard and T. Rowe Price. You can do this all online, but most places require a min contribution of $1,000 – but go online with each to find out the minimums, some are as low as $25. Anyone can help you, and it's their job to do so.

The best way to invest is with a consistent direct contribution form a paycheck. It’s like reverse auto debit- the money comes right out of your paycheck and you never know you had it – expect it’s growing on the side, instead of shrinking like when you pay bills.

This is called dollar cost averaging and it means that you are contributing the same amount on a regular schedule forgetting about the stock price. The object is sometimes you are buying a fund at a high price, and sometimes a low price, but in the end it is all averaging out. It’s the consistency that really yields a lot of money growing in a retirement account.

There are all sorts of calculators online as well to help you figure out how much your account might grow to given different factors.

What funds should you choose – well that depends on your risk tolerance meaning, how much risk you are willing to take for a given return? If you want a 18% return, then you might need to be risky…if you want a 5% return, then you could be more conservative. This is individualized, so there is no one-size-fits-all investment strategy. What you will want to check out is an asset allocation tool online, which help you  figure out what works for you given your risk and your age- CNN Money has a good one.

Once you’ve figured out your appropriate asset allocation given the risk you want to take, you can then start picking mutual funds or EFT’s. EFT’s are popular now because they offer low investment expense, meaning you aren’t paying a lot for the fund and they are like a stock and a mutual fund hybrid. Other popular option are Lifestyle Funds that match your expected retirement date- so you just pick when you are set to retire, and they invest based on your age and retirement date.

Also index funds – like a total stock market Index Fund that is comprised of a bunch of stocks that are like in the S&P 500 – might have Apple, Exon, Johnson and Johnson, Google, Wells Fargo, etc. ….all US companies.

You really have to figure out what it is that YOU like- not what your friend, or your parent’s, or whatever author of an article online likes. Do some research so you know what you are buying. It’s really important.

 

 

 

 

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What is the Fed Funds Rate & Why Should I Care?

On  your  journey to achieving millionaire status, you NEED to know about some important economic factors and numbers that will impact your millionareness. Yes, that is officially a word.

The Fed Funds Rate is the most important interest rate that you should be watching because it is tied to the monetary and financial conditions set by the Federal Reserve Bank. That is the grand poobah of banks which sets the Fed Funds rate, which is the rate at which banks can borrow money. You see, banks take in money, and pay out a lot of money each day. Sometimes they don't have enough money to cover the reserve amount they need to keep, so they must borrow money. That borrowing of money costs money.

In simplicity, the higher the Fed Funds rate – the more expensive it is for you to borrow money. Conversely, the cheaper the rate is, the cheaper it is for you to borrow money.

There are tons of articles on the Fed Funds rate, so pick a few and read some more. Learning about this rate is really important because so many financial decisions you make – interest rate on buying a car, interest rate on buying a house, the amount of interest you are getting in your savings accounts, etc. depends on this rate.

Investopedia 
Bankrate.com

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All About Hotels| Splurge it or Save the Dough

Staying at a hotel is really expensive. Have you ever pulled up to a  hotel only to find out that valet parking was some sort of obscene amount, like $59 a night? That's just to park the car, I hate to see what they will charge for wi-fi access.

We shouldn't have to stop going on vacation to be smart financially. We just need to figure out how to stay at hotels for less, what things we can save some dough on and the things there are ok to splurge on.

Everyone has their favorite splurge at a hotel, but mine really is either a nice cocktail out by the pool or dessert room service style. Everything else, I'm a “save the dough” kind of girl. Hotel breakfast is notoriously overpriced, and forget about that $15 charge for semi-decent wi-fi. Head over to a local coffee shop, and use their wi-fi for a while. I mean, you are on vacation, you shouldn't need wi-fi anyway.

Check out our recent video on all the ways I Splurge it and Save the Dough when staying a hotel. Let me know what some of your favorite splurges are…have anything that you splurge on without thinking

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Put Your Passion in Your Career

Think money and passion don't go together? Think again!

When you infuse your passion and mission into your career, you are suddenly able to tackle things that you never thought you could…like money. So many people though just go to work, and leave their passions on the side. That just doesn't work.

Every good company has a strong mission statement, so you should as well. Think 1-2 sentences that describes what you are passionate about and want to accomplish. It doesn't matter if you love dirt, or heart transplants. Every mission is unique to us, because we are all unique. Don't stress over someone else's…it's theirs to work with.

Millennials are the largest demographic, and we have the biggest chance to cause change in the world. We can't do that if we are all stressed out and don't have any passion. The two go together.

Think for a moment. What are you passionate about? What gets you excited? What impact do you want to have on the world…even in the smallest way? Those should be questions that you seek to answer. Once you have those, then it's time to turn to your career.

Does your career echo that mission and passion?

In this podcast, I focus on how you can get your career and passion inline, and give you a little homework to help you figure your way down the passion path.

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Listener Questions Part 4

The listener question podcast episodes are always some of your favorites. In this podcast we are covering 4 questions that really popped out from the list of questions. Take a listen to the podcast for all the details, and be sure to send me your burning questions for future episodes.

#1- I've heard about the Pay as You Earn repayment plan for student loans, but I'm not sure if it is for me. Can you tell more more about it?

#2- What are the best places online to find out about salary information for new jobs?

#3- I want to get a masters degree, and am thinking about going overseas. Do you have any suggestions of where to look?

#4- How should someone approach money if they are in a poverty situation?

If you have a question, please feel free to shoot me an email at yourmillennialmoney@gmail.com. Don't be shy, I love to answer question

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How to Make Money Blogging With Joesdaily.com

Joe Miragliotta did what many of us dream about doing.

He quit his “safe” job and embarked on a journey as a blogger, creating the popular site Joesdaily.com, a men's travel and lifestyle blog. He features amazing products and cool destinations from all over the world. (Lots more, so you should head over and check out his site.)

I met Joe at an event for Ford in San Francisco last month, and I was quite impressed with his site, and of course him. He's always on the go exploring new places to write about and testing out new products, but hey it's what the job calls for, and someone's gotta do it.

Blogging is a risky business, (and not for the faint of heart),  but if you have a passion for working for yourself, coupled with a lot of hustle and drive, you too can make money in blogging. However even with a great idea, lots of talent and great hustle, learning the ins and outs of blogging can be a daunting task.

Join me on this podcast as I have a chat with Joe about his journey to blogging, how in the heck you make money blogging and advice that he has to share about how you too can start your own blogging journey.

Connect with Joe on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

 

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Hack Your Savings With These 11 Apps

There is an app for everything. An app for making pasta, an app for learning French, an app for creating great pictures, an app to learn about art…you get it, an app for everything. Of course my favorite apps are those that help you save money, while still enjoying your life.

I've put together this little video highlighting my favorite 11 apps, but here are 4 of my favorites.

 

– Happy Hour Finder

Happy Hour is the way to go when you want to enjoy a drink out without bursting your budget. I use this app all the time, and have saved a ton of money.

– Hotel Tonight

I love to travel, which you know, but sometimes I like to travel last-minute. I use this app to find deals at great hotels 24-48 hours in advance. If you want to try a 5-star resort, but don't have the cash, check out this app and you might just score a last-minute deal.

– Gas Buddy

Gas. Is. Expensive. Do I need to say anymore about this app? I use Gas Buddy to help me find the best priced gas in my neighborhood, and when I travel.

– Raise

You know all those gift cards that you aren't going to use? You can SELL them on Raise, and better yet, you can buy used gift cards at a fraction of the price. Seriously, you don't ever have to pay full price for gift cards again. Let us all rejoice!

Check out all my favorite 11 Apps in this video, and then leave me a comment about which apps you use.

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Detroit – A Great Millennial Entrepreneur City

What does it take to be a great entrepreneurial city for millennials? A low-cost of living, opportunity, an amazing food and culture scene, good people and a young spirit.  Right now, Detroit is topping that list.

Detroit has seen it's fair share of struggles over the last few years. High unemployment, loads of crime and a housing market that has fallen apart top the charts for Detroit. In the last few years you could score a house in Detroit for under $50,000. That's a steal, trust me.

On today's podcast I chat with travel journalist, Jeff Game, about his recent trip to Detroit. Research can only tell me so much about Detroit, I wanted you all to hear what was actually happening there for someone who just visited.

Most of the cool businesses and restaurants that are emerging have been started by millennials. They have decided to take things in their own hands and create the type of businesses that they can be proud of, and ones that give back to their community.

A few of our favorites right now are:

– Ponyride (I am in love with this concept)

– Detroit Dirt

– Selden Standard

– Gold Cash Gold

– Detroit Soup (I want to move to Detroit just for Detroit Soup)

If you are an entrepreneur and you are looking for a new home, think about Detroit. Yes, it gets cold there, but perhaps all the opportunity can keep you warm and cozy on those cold nights.

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Listener Questions

The listener question podcast episodes are always some of your favorites. In this podcast we are covering 4 questions that really popped out from the list of questions. Take a listen to the podcast for all the details, and be sure to send me your burning questions for future episodes.

#1- I've heard about the  Pay as You Earn repayment plan for student loans, but I'm not sure if it is for me. Can you tell more more about it?

#2- What are the best places online to find out about salary information for new jobs? 

#3- I want to get a masters degree, and am thinking about going overseas. Do you have any suggestions of where to look?

#4- How should someone approach money if they are in a poverty situation?

If you have a question, please feel free to shoot me an email at yourmillennialmoney@gmail.com. Don't be shy, I love to answer questions.

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The Unbreakable Mindset

What does it take to have an unbreakable mindset?

As an entrepreneur you will need a few handy tools in the tool chest, and the first one you will need to have armed and ready is a mindset that is so focused and determined that no one can shake it.

On today's podcast I had the pleasure to interview Leo Landaverde, author of Unbreakable Mindset: The Successful Entrepreneur's Guide to Bouncing Back from Defeat. 

(And you can get it for FREE here for a limited time. Even if you aren't an entrepreneur, you will learn a lot in this book.)

Leo is no stranger to the concept of bouncing back. His story is an important one for any entrepreneur to read no matter what stage of career you are in. As we all know, money has power, but what many entrepreneurs find out (the hard way) is that money can't define you. If you have success, it's easy to go down a rabbit hole where you want more and more. The more money you make, the more stuff you want. The more stuff you want, the more money you need to make. (See the dilemma here?)

What resonates with me the most about Leo's story is his message about the dominance of fear that exists for so many of us, and his strategies to push past those nasty voices in our head that try to tell us we can't succeed. I know I've suffered from fear and probably not achieved certain things that might have been easy for me, because I was afraid.

Do yourself a favor, listen to the podcast, and then jump over to Amazon and get Leo's book now.

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