Archive for February, 2010:

America Saves Week, what about you?

Written on February 22nd, 2010 by Jamesno shouts

Okay, so did you know that this is officially “America Saves Week’?  This sobering statistic is why official weeks like this are needed to promote financial literacy and savings:

  • National Savings Needs:  Most Americans do not have adequate savings to meet major emergencies, let alone accumulate enough savings for retirement.  The typical American household has less than $100,000 in net wealth, including home equity and 401k accumulations, and only about $10,000 in net financial assets.  Lower income families have much fewer resources. 

To learn more about America Saves Week click on the link:  www.americasavesweek.org

Filed under Budgeting, Investing, Personal Finance Tags:

Budget?

Written on February 5th, 2010 by Jamesno shouts

I get asked quite often about budgets.  Most of the time the questions revolve around “How much should we budget for a certain area”.  It’s a tough question to answer and I generally try to tip toe around it.  Everyone is different in their spending habits so it is hard to come up with a generic budget that fits.  That is one of the main reasons I created myVizer.com.  Anytime someone asks how they compare to another planning client, I just refer them over to the website and let them see for themselves.  (it shows your percentages vs. the average percentage for other users)

Recently though I stumbled upon an interesting article in Kiplingers magazine that gives folks a basic budget.  The title of the article was “how to divvy up your paycheck”.  Here is the breakdown:

  • 30% Housing (mortgage/rent/insurance/prop tax)
  • 15% Food (groceries/dining out)
  • 10% debt
  • 10% utilities/household
  • 10% transportation (loan, gas, maintenance, auto ins)
  • 10% savings
  • 5% clothing
  • 5% entertainment
  • 5% miscellaneous

It’s not a bad benchmark to follow.   It’s not perfect, but not bad.  

Out of curiosity, I will have to get the wife to see how she thinks we compare to those numbers!

Filed under Budgeting, Credit & Spending Tags: