Pomp and Circum$tance

Congrats to all the new grads, and those still working to get there.  Here’s how to get started on the right foot…financially speaking of course.

Feeling Overweight? Try Losing Some Debt For a Change.

july cover

Feeling Overweight?

Try Losing Some Debt For a Change.

Have you ever wanted to throw a brick at your TV?  No, not the one with the rabbit ears that won’t work in a few days anyway, I mean your shiny new 42” flat panel LCD HDTV that you swiped from Circuit City just before they went bankrupt.  No?  Well, I have.  I’ve actually heard some people on TV say that Americans should “go out and spend for the good of the country!”  Every time I hear such nonsense I get the urge hurl a large blunt object right through the center of the screen.  If I wasn’t anxiously waiting for the new season of Eastbound and Down I might actually do it.  Where is the Kenny Powers voice of reason when you need it?

How Soon We Forget

What these idiots seem to have forgotten is that a major reason that we landed in this recession is that we spent more than we earned and borrowed more than we could afford.  Let’s put this in context.

  • In the 70s and 80s the savings rate in the U.S. averaged about 10%, meaning folks saved 10% of their after tax income.
  • In 2005, the savings rate dipped into NEGATIVE territory for the first time since the Great Depression
  • The savings rate was a paltry 1.8% by the end of 2008.
  • The rate has since gone up to about 4%, but that still means that 96% of your income is flying out of the window!

 Come on people!  Are we silly enough to think that spending more money is the way to get out of a problem that started by spending too much money?  That’s kind of like suggesting that the cure to your terrible hangover is to down a few more shots of Patron first thing in the morning…right after you hurl. Absurd, right? [Read more...]

With This Receipt I Thee Wed

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jgn5leoUE4g]

Here you go as promised.  Here’s how to have a great wedding day without breaking the bank and starting your life in debt.

Former Browns QB Kosar Files for Bankruptcy

Seriously, I really hate these stories.  Unfortunately, this reinforces my choice to work with athletes and entertainers and why I work so hard to protect them from circumstances like this.

In May, Kosar and his Boardwalk LLC lost a $2.9 million foreclosure judgment on a 36-unit apartment building to Florida Bank in Pinellas County Circuit Court. In April, Kosar and his Oakmont LLC lost a $3.3 million foreclosure judgment to Florida Bank in Hillsborough County Circuit County over a Tampa apartment building. The bank also had a foreclosure lawsuit pending in Pinellas County against Kosar and his PCV LLC.

Among Kosar’s other major unsecured creditors:

 A $3.1 million personal guaranty to Key Bank National Association of Cleveland

  • $3.04 million to his ex-wife Babette J. Kosar
  • $725,000 in a disputed loan involving attorney Jim Ferraro of Coral Gables $1.4 million total on three claims involving the Browns   
  • $231,094 to the IRS

Read the full story here.

Wish You Had a Mansion? Win One for $10

According to the Luxist, a Florida couple is trying to sell their Ft. Lauderdale mansion by conducting a raffle.  This just proves it’s still bad out there.

Coming soon…”Buy My Bentley BINGO!”  LOL

Read the entire story here

With This Reciept, I Thee Wed

knowles_jayz weddingI’ll be talking (Financial) Planning For Your Wedding tomorrow morning on the KDKA Morning News on the CW.

You may not be planning a wedding as extravagant as Mr. and Mrs. Greatest Rapper Alive (speaking of which, did you hear “Death of Autotune“?…sick), but if you have any questions you’d like me to address, leave a comment and I’ll do my best to get in in the show or I will respond here.

Pimp Your Portfolio

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JXvoT3aY9KQ]

Before you run to Home Depot for gardening supplies, make sure you take some time to get your financial house in order.

Who’s the Boss?

may coverWho’s The Boss?
Don’t Like Your Job? Create Your Own.

When you turn on the TV and you hear that 5 million people have lost their jobs since the beginning of this recession, I’m sure those of us that still have one are thankful to say the least. But, is it truly a blessing to be trapped in a job that you hate, working for a bunch of people that you can’t stand? Not really. And you wonder why it’s so hard to get up in the morning? It’s great to be thankful that you can put food on the table, but is that all that you want out of the deal?

Who’s the Boss?

No, I’m not referring to the 80’s sitcom where Tony Danza used to chase around Judith Light like he didn’t have any sense. Although, who knew that Alyssa Milano, Tony’s daughter on the show, would turn out so smoking hot that she has grown men watching “Charmed” just to get a glimpse of her? I sure didn’t see that coming…but I digress.

I’m talking about taking a look at who is really the boss of you. Do you have a career rather than just a job? [If you are not sure…you definitely have a job.] How much control do you have over the direction of your career? Over how much money you make? If you don’t like the answers to these questions, it might be time to strike out on your own.

I know, I know, this isn’t what you’ve been taught…until now. If you are anything like me, your parents told you that the formula for success was Study Hard + Good Grades = Good College and Good Grades + Good College = Good Job. This equation is true. But you know by now that I don’t want you to have a GOOD JOB, I want you to have a GREAT LIFE. In order to do that, I think it’s time you started thinking about starting your own business. Why work yourself to death making someone else rich?

Where is Your Leverage?

It is very difficult for most people to get wealthy because their only source of income is their hourly wage or salary. But there is only one you and there are only 24 hours in the day. Sure, if you have a unique skill (doctors, attorneys, athletes) that someone is willing to pay top dollar for, you can use that model. If not, you need to find some sort of leverage to help you build real wealth.

Starting a business helps you get that leverage. There is a limit to what you can sell on your own, but your income is unlimited once you hire a bunch of people that can sell for you. The fact is either you get rich on the backs on someone else, or someone else gets rich off of yours. Period. Which one of those is your favorite position?

[Read more...]

The Early Bird Gets The Cheese

april coverThe Early Bird Gets the Cheese
Start Early. Make Money.

Wait a minute…is that what I think it is? Is it? Yes, it is…it’s….the SUN! Holy mackerel, I can’t believe it. I was beginning to think that the economy was so bad that we couldn’t afford sunlight anymore. Whew, that is a relief. I just recently realized how different my attitude is when it’s warm outside and the sun is shining. I just have better days in general under those conditions. Perhaps I need to move to a warmer climate. Hmm, something to think about.

I also get excited because the warmer it gets, the closer I get to playing golf. I started playing golf a few years ago because I thought that it was a skill that I needed to have as a businessman. It only took me a couple of times out on a few beautiful courses and I immediately fell in love with the game. Love, though, does not reduce your handicap so I continue to practice so that my swing never, EVER gets as bad as Charles Barkley’s. If you haven’t seen his swing, check out the Haney Project on the Golf Channel for a few good laughs.

If you start to play the game you will hear a lot of golfers say “Boy, I really wish I had started playing golf earlier.” I agree. The funny thing about that statement is that it is very similar to what I hear people say about their money. “I wish I had gotten started with investing earlier.” “I wish I had saved more money when I was younger.” Funny how life imitates golf, huh?

Talent vs. Training

Of course we can’t talk golf without talking Tiger Woods; especially since he laid the Chris Brown…oops I mean the smack down, on an entire field of golfers essentially on one leg at the US Open last year. How does he do it? Watching some of the shots that he makes, it seems as if he has superhuman powers. But he’s from California, not Krypton so there has to be another answer. There is…lots and lots of practice. [Read more...]

Kidz And Cash

Here’s how to teach your kids about money…even if you don’t have it all together yet.

…Speaking of kids and money, I couldn’t resist posting this. Keith, how about we start them this early?!!?!?!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8Ev5HgGACg