Steven J Richardson Esq public
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In Episode 96, I talked about getting your money ready for marriage. But what if you’re already married and have been for years? If you are both of the same mind when it comes to money, then great! But what if you have different money mindsets? What if you are having trouble coming to agreement on spending? That is why, as we round out a series of …
 
In previous episodes I’ve talked about budgeting and how it’s important to have one to keep your spending in line with your income and help you towards your long-term financial goals. I also discussed in the last episode setting goals and being more strategic in how you handle your finances. In the process of researching that episode, I ran across …
 
As the year 2020 comes to a close, it’s time to start thinking about our financial goals for 2021. This year has presented some challenges and shown us how important it is to plan for bad times, so that when they come, we are ready, and our financial freedom isn’t threatened. That’s why in this episode of the podcast I step you through what you nee…
 
In Episode 114 I started a series of episodes around reducing expenses in your budget in order to help you live within your means and have money left over to save for the future. It was also in follow up to Episode 113 in which I talked with “Tightwad Todd” Miller about living below your means. That’s why in this episode of the podcast I take on th…
 
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many people have lost their jobs because their employer had to close up shop; the work could not be done remotely. Some of them were able to pivot successfully to other jobs or transfer their skills to one that can be done from home. Unfortunately, many others are still looking. That may be because they haven’t been ab…
 
Way back in Episode 13 of the podcast I did a review of an app from personal finance guru Dave Ramsey called EveryDollar. It is an app my wife and I have been using since then, and it’s great! But there are a lot of other apps out there that can help you keep your finances straight, and one of them might be better for you than EveryDollar. Which is…
 
People trying to achieve personal financial freedom are often initially struggling with debt and trying to get out of a financial hole. They are getting letters from collection agencies and law firms that are demanding that the debt be paid. They have to get out of debt before they can ever hope to achieve their goal. But people in debt, in my expe…
 
In Episode 113 of the podcast I talked with “Tightwad Todd” Miller, a personal finance consultant and coach on the subject of spending below your means. I did this because reducing spending as much as possible to free up money to save and invest for the future is a key part of achieving long term financial independence and freedom. So, I thought it…
 
Achieving financial freedom in the short term requires living within your means. In other words, your monthly expenses need to total no more than your monthly net income, so that you don’t sink into debt. But achieving long term financial freedom requires even more discipline; you need to live below your means. By doing this you generate unused inc…
 
Every business should have a web site to promote its goods and services and attract new customers, especially as more of them are functioning virtually. Despite this, so many of them don’t have a web presence, or just have a domain name for e-mail. By not having one they are leaving money on the table and passing by an opportunity for growth. That’…
 
With the COVID-19 pandemic going into its sixth month, many businesses have either filed bankruptcy, closed for good, or have shed employees to slim down. No matter the cause, a lot of people are now out of work and looking for a new job. This has become especially urgent with the end of the supplemental unemployment benefits under the CARES Act. L…
 
A major part of the American Dream is to strike it rich, to become a millionaire. However, for the vast majority, that is just a dream. 3.5% of our population holds nearly half of our wealth. Back in 1996, a couple of Ph.D.s, Thomas J. Stanley and William D. Danko, decided to do some research into America’s millionaires. The surprising answers they…
 
The COVID-19 pandemic has now reached over 3.9 million cases in this country (with over 179,000 in New Jersey) and has caused over 144,000 deaths (with over 15,000 in New Jersey). Even those who have survived the illness have had a tough time, with many having lengthy hospital stays. This taste of our own mortality has been sobering for all of us; …
 
Due to the pandemic, lots of people are either working from home or have lost their jobs because they cannot be done from home. Those in the latter group may be looking for a job that allows them to do so. On the other hand, many small businesses are looking for help, but are unsure whether hiring someone (and taking on the payroll and other admini…
 
On March 27, 2020, the CARES Act was signed into law to help people deal with the devastating economic effects of the coronavirus. Many of the provisions help student loan borrowers, and while they provide some welcome relief, the law doesn’t address all of the problems that student loan borrowers face. In addition, these provisions are set to expi…
 
Social distancing orders in light of the coronavirus pandemic have forced companies to send workers home and have them work remotely. The trend might continue. According to a Gartner survey of 317 finance executives on March 30, 3 out of 4 chief finance officers and finance leaders are considering moving at least 5% of their on-site workforce to re…
 
Being in debt is stressful, no question! It can weigh on your mind with constant worry about how you will ever be able to pay the debts and avoid bankruptcy. It can have you afraid to open your mail or answer the phone. But there are helpful and constructive ways to deal with this stress, which is why in this episode of the podcast I talk to psycho…
 
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a huge disruption in our economy, as millions of people experience job loss or pay reduction, leading to great difficulty (or outright inability) to pay their bills. Congress responded with the CARES Act in March that gave aid in several different sectors, including student loans. As a student loan attorney, I have …
 
With the coronavirus pandemic forcing non-essential businesses to work virtually, the needs of those businesses have changed. Many may even discover that a virtual business model is better and change forever how they operate. This is made possible by a growing number of cloud services that can allow companies to run smoothly with a distributed work…
 
The coronavirus pandemic has shut down a lot businesses and forced many others to operate virtually, often times with reduced staff. Revenues have dropped, and businesses are looking for ways to pay their expenses until the crisis is over. Our situation today is a much bigger example of what happens to businesses every year, where they are going th…
 
The outbreak of the Corona Virus and the recent drop in the stock market has a lot of people worried about their retirement investments. What does the current bear market mean for their retirement? Should they stop investing or keep going? Or if they are already retired, will they be okay, or will they have to go back to work? To answer these quest…
 
I started this podcast in January of 2016 with the hope of providing helpful information to folks either after I had assisted them through a difficult financial situation to keep them moving towards a better financial future or to prevent them from having a difficult financial situation in the first place. Many of the episodes were solo ones where …
 
Many Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, struggling to make ends meet, and having no plans, or hope for the future. Their only goal is to make it to the next payday, so they can pay the next bill. But unless something changes for them, they will never achieve financial freedom. Which is why in this episode of the podcast I talk about the ste…
 
There is a popular saying among entrepreneurs that most people don’t go out of business, they grow out of business. This can be due to several factors, including whether to expand at all or just raise prices with demand, whether or not the proper systems are in place pass off effectively to employees those things the owners did themselves, and whet…
 
According to the book, The Millionaire Next Door, seven out of ten American Millionaires are first generation. Unfortunately, this means that 70% of the time, the money mindset that made them rich never got passed down to continue the financial winning streak. That’s why in this episode of the podcast I decided to discuss how people can communicate…
 
Getting married is a big step. You are making a lifetime commitment to another person that will be tested in so many ways over time. One of those ways is financial stress, which has caused problems in many marriages, and ended many others, so how you prepare for it before the wedding becomes very important. Because this episode is being released on…
 
In Episode 42 of the podcast I talked about how to use a particular type of savings account (referred to as a 529 account) to save for your children’s education. I gave some general information and urged people with children to look into them. However, I always wanted to revisit this topic later for a deeper dive. That’s why on this episode of the …
 
The retirement plan for a self-employed individual is often different from those who work for someone else. If it is a small business, it usually doesn’t have a pension plan or a 401(k), although the owner can set up an IRA and an SEP to put money aside. What the plan does include that makes it different is what that person does with their business…
 
As we enter into the December holiday season, many people look to purchase a new car, as manufacturers advertise heavily in the media offering lots of deals to encourage you to buy. Toyota, for example, often holds their “Toyotathon,” which ends soon after the first of the year. For this reason, in this episode of the podcast I talk about the best …
 
These days, expenses continue to go up, but your salary at work doesn’t. There’s often a constant struggle to bring in enough money to cover all budgeted expenses, plus maintain an emergency fund and save for retirement! In Episode 91 I talked about how passive income can help to supplement the earned income at your job. In this episode of the podc…
 
It can often be difficult to pay the bills on your current income due to increases in costs or unexpected expenses. If you don’t have an emergency fund, one big car repair can derail your budget. But absent your boss giving you a raise, what can you do? There are only so many hours in a day, so a second job may well be out of the question. But that…
 
Travel is expensive, and people living on a budget trying to pay their bills and stay on an even financial keel often can’t afford a vacation. We all need some time off from the daily grind but finding the money to do so can be difficult. Credit card companies like Capital One have recognized this market and advertise products that allow you to acc…
 
Financial planners and retirement experts all preach on the importance of starting early in saving for retirement. The sooner you start, the more time your money has to grow. But what if you got a late start because life got in the way: marriage, children, financial setbacks and the like? What do you do then? That’s why in this episode of the podca…
 
June was that they were issuing their own credit card, in partnership with Goldman Sachs. Lots of great features were detailed, and a sleek, modern design for the card was revealed. But now that the card is generally available in the United States, the question becomes, should you get one? Are all of the features that were announced worth it? Is it…
 
Being in financial difficulty is stressful. You have debt that you can’t pay, you keep getting letters and phone calls demanding money you don’t have, and court officers are standing at your door to serve you with lawsuits. This can really weigh you down. Under these circumstances, it is natural for people to come up with reasons in their heads as …
 
Anyone who wishes to achieve financial independence needs to start taking the appropriate steps as soon as possible. The earlier in your life you start, the sooner you will reach a point where you no longer need a paycheck. That’s when you know you can retire and start enjoying life full time! There is a growing movement now in the world called FIR…
 
Home ownership has, for decades, been the “American Dream.” It gave people a financial goal to work towards, saving their money for a downpayment and trying to get their credit up to a point where they could qualify for a mortgage. In many ways, it has also become a bit of a status symbol. But lately, the Millennial Generation has been questioning …
 
The vast majority of the people that come to me to file bankruptcy do so because of out of control credit card debt. The totals can run from the tens- to the hundreds of thousands of dollars. Credit card debt can drag you down and prevent you from having financial freedom. But are credit cards, in and of themselves, bad? Is it the card (and the sys…
 
Graduating from college or university with your degree is a momentous occasion. You finally made it! You’re ready to go out into the real world and make your mark. But this occasion brings with it new challenges that you will have to face, such as finding a job (if you haven’t already) and figuring out how you are going to deal with your student de…
 
We all fall into some bad habits at one time or another, and it can be difficult to get out of them. But sometimes those bad habits can have lasting effects on your life and can affect your financial freedom. They can get in the way of your saving money, spending responsibly, and having an enjoyable life both now and in retirement. That’s why in th…
 
In order to complete any project, you need the right tools, and it’s no different when you are trying to establish and maintain financial freedom. For that you need the financial products that line up with your needs, priorities, and goals. They need to be the right ones for you. That’s why in this episode of the podcast I talk about how to identif…
 
Even with the Affordable Care Act, many people, especially millennials, struggle with the cost of health insurance premiums. People in their 20s are less likely to need healthcare than those over 40, but when they need it, it can be beyond reach without insurance. But how does a young adult, just starting out in the workplace, balance rent, car pay…
 
A key part of establishing and maintaining financial freedom is having a job you love that provides you with an income that allows you to have the lifestyle you want while still saving and investing for the future. But what if you don’t have that job right now? What if you find yourself dead-ended in a position with no real opportunities for advanc…
 
When it comes to investing for retirement, the earlier you start the better. People that start in their 20s, rather than their 30s, or even 40s, give their money more time to grow and therefore give themselves the best chance at financial freedom. No one knows personal finance for 20-somethings like Broke Millennial Erin Lowry, a writer, speaker, a…
 
Before anyone sets out to find financial freedom, they need to understand what that term means to them, as it is different for everyone. This definition can depend on your financial goals, both now and in the future. Do you want to retire or keep working? Do you want to travel? The financial strategies for each can be different, and it is better to…
 
For those in their 50s and early 60s, planning for retirement has a different, more immediate feel. For millennials, it’s starting to save for it; for those further on in life, it’s figuring out its implementation. A lot of decisions have to be made, including the downsizing of your home, especially if you’re an “empty nester.” That’s why in this e…
 
Financial planning and a good investment strategy, started as early as possible, is key to achieving financial freedom in retirement. The sooner you do it, the better off you are (and will be). But many people start off doing this with no clear idea of what they are doing, which can really derail the train soon after it leaves the station. Out of i…
 
Getting your financial house in order means cutting down on spending, living within your means, and staying within a budget. You need to reduce or cut out spending, while using your money wisely and for the right purpose. In many ways, this is like going on a diet, but instead of cutting calories, you are cutting spending (dollars), and instead of …
 
A major part of any effort to attain financial freedom is establishing and maintaining a good credit score. It can make the difference not only in whether you get a loan, but the interest rate that you will pay if you do. It can also decide many times whether you will get a particular job or affordable car insurance. But how can you work to establi…
 
Starting a new year, to a lot of people, means starting fresh. One popular new year’s resolution, in fact, is getting one’s financial house in order. The first step to doing that is to have a budget, so that you will know at the outset whether you are living within your means or overspending. But is there more than one way to budget, and if so, wha…
 
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