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ISSUE NO. 205- MAY 2005
Brought to you by www.in2m.com
Mvelopes Personal is simply the easiest way to manage your finances!

• Recover 10% of your income from hidden spending
• Always know exactly how much you have left to spend
• Instantly know the impact of every spending decision
• Automatically do all your home budget tracking
• Easily pay ALL your bills online
• Effectively manage credit card spending
• Create an easy to use household budgeting plan

Most People Spend 10% More Than They Make!
You probably know how much money you made last month, but do you know how much money you spent? Or do you know how much money you have left to spend this month? If you don't you're not alone, most people have no idea. The fact is most of us spend 10% more per month than we make. That comes out to $431 per month based on the average American income. No wonder the average credit card debt is now at $8,500!
A New Way To Manage Your Money
Traditionally, many people managed their money by dividing their cash into several paper envelopes. An envelope for food, entertainment, utilities etc. They then spent their money from these envelopes. They always knew how much money they had left, and how long it had to last. A new breakthrough in budgeting and spending management modernizes this same envelope concept using advanced computer technology.
This is the first issue of the Smart Money Tips newsletter. This monthly newsletter will deliver tips, articles and suggestions to help you optimize your finances. You will enjoy topics such as family budgeting, debt reduction, saving and frugality. Enjoy!

Why It's Important to Follow Budgeting Guidelines
Creditors use budgeting guidelines when reviewing and approving credit. If your debt exceeds the financial communities recommended guidelines, then you have a higher risk of credit applications being denied. Plus, you will pay more interest since you will be perceived as a higher risk.

Getting, and keeping, your debt in line with recommended guidelines, is an important step in debt relief and debt recovery. Use the following guidelines to review the items in your budget, and make special note of expenses that are out of line:

  • Housing 35% - Mortgage or rent, taxes, repairs, improvements, insurance, and utilities
  • Transportation 20% - Monthly payments, gas, oil, repairs, insurance, parking & public transportation
  • Debt Budget 15% - Credit cards, personal loans, student loans & other debt payments
  • All other expenses 20% - Food, insurance, prescriptions, doctor & dentist bills, clothing & personal
  • Investments & Savings Budget 10% - Stocks, bonds, cash reserves, art, etc.
Next to each item that is out of line, make notes as to why you think they are out of line with recommended guidelines. Be honest, be brutal, but write it down. It is the only way to ensure that you consciously accept the reasons for your debt problem so that you can fix it permanently. Remember, debt relief is a temporary solution, only you can make debt problems disappear for good.

If you find one guideline percentage to be more than you need, or less than you need for your personal situation, feel free to take from one to give to another. Keep in mind though, you want to eventually get your debt budget down to, or below, that 15% recommended guideline. That has to be your primary goal if you are using Budgeting Guidelines for debt relief.

(Author: Deborah Seeber www.DebtSteps.com)


Free Debt Calculator
Calculate how long it will take you to pay off all your debts This free debt calculator will also calculate your payoff time if you use the debt roll-down principle. The idea behind the debt roll-down principle is to set aside a certain amount for debt repayment, then continue to maintain the total monthly amount you pay in debt reduction even after the first debt is paid off. Simply apply the amount you were paying on the first debt to the next debt on the list. When that debt too is paid off, you apply the amount you had been paying on one and two to the third, and so on. The key here is to make sure you continue paying the same aggregate amount every month until every debt is paid.

This calculator will tell you how long it will take to pay off your debts using the debt roll-down principle and compare that to the time it would take you to pay off your debts by paying the minimum monthly payments.