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Get Money: New Year’s Financial Checklist (Part 1)

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Home for the holidays and broke for the new year?  Don’t worry, we’re here to help.  The new year is a great time to set goals.  If getting your money in order is one of your goals, let’s get to it!

When was the last time you checked your credit?

Each year we know that we should get a physical to check on our health.  Well, a credit check is the equivalent of your financial health.  You are entitled to one free credit report each year, from each credit bureau.  You can access this at www.annualcreditreport.com.  It is not uncommon to have errors on your credit report, especially if you have a common name.  CNN Money estimates that 42 million Americans have errors on their credit report.  Pulling your credit allows you to review it for errors, as well as find out if there are any correct information that is damaging your credit score.

If you find out that you have errors, don’t freak out! You have options.  You can dispute the errors directly through the credit bureau (at no cost to you).  If you’re concerned that personal information has been compromised (remember the Equifax breach), you can place a temporary “freeze” on your credit.  This prevents any new requests for credit or accounts in your name until you lift it.  While the credit report is free, it doesn’t include your score.  To get this, you could pay each bureau to obtain your score.  Or you can sign up for a free service like Credit Karma, and they will provide it for you monthly.  They currently only provide Equifax and Transunion.  If you have credit cards, some companies provide your score for free.  This is also true for some banks, so ask around before you pay for your score.

Do you have a budget? Spending with out a budget is like driving without directions, it’s easy to get lost.  It is important to know exactly how much is coming in and going out each month.  You should exactly how much your bills are and also plan for miscellaneous expenses.  Do you know if you have a healthy mix of bills?  For example, does your housing (rent or mortgage) exceed more than 1/3 of your income?  Does your car payment exceed more than 10 percent of your take home pay?  If so, these are areas of concern.  A great budget template is the 50/30/20 method.  This means that bills don’t exceed 50% of your budget, miscellaneous expenses exceed no more than 30%, and you save 20% of your income.

Stay tuned for Part 2.  If you have any questions about Part 1, feel free to send me an email at [email protected] .  (Yes, speechless is spelled with one “s” at the end).

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For The Culture

Match Black Women brings Hi-tech Love to Matchmaking Services

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Match Black Woman brings Hi-tech Love to Matchmaking Services
New dating site offers innovative solutions for Black women 

Atlanta, GA: MatchBlackWoman.com offers dating and networking solutions for women of African ancestry to find compatible suitors. An innovating dating service, the site offers membership levels and business opportunities to not only connect with others, but monetize their time and investment.

Built on the belief that voluntarily connecting people who share common interests can lead to greater compatibility, the platform seeks to propose a solution by bridging the gap of a tough online dating market while providing a service for individuals who have an interest in dating Black Women.

The site has a number of features designed to help seekers find a potential mate. Women can meet single men, network with other women, receive matchmaking services, video chat, and participate in forums. There are also unique search options based on music preferences, eating habits, lifestyle, and more.

MatchBlackWomen.com is a social networking dating site designed from a womanist perspective. It includes the interests of women and includes forums to discuss issues relating to Black women and the broader community. It’s time we had our own space. This is a way to make things fun, interesting, and connect with like-minded people.

There are three membership options: Free, Gold, and Black Diamond. Free members can create a profile, post three photos and conduct member searches. The Gold level allows members to add up to six photos, send and receive unlimited messages, video chat, post on an activity wall, have access to forums and news, and set privacy limits. The premium Black Diamond level has all the features of the Gold level, with unlimited photos.

Business people have an added incentive: become an affiliate! Earn 55% commission per signup, making finding true love while getting paid even better! For more information on the site, or to express interest in the business opportunity, contact [email protected].

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Mom Gets Criticized for Showing Toddlers Kissing on The Mouth

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Mother of 3, Ashlee Muhammed receives backlash for her parenting skills, due to a viral video of her twin boys kissing on the lips.

Although most people seemed to think that the video showed an innocent sign of affection, others were not feeling the brotherly love.

All You NEED Is LOVE 🌹@supernovaandjetman

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One follower called Muhammed’s parenting skills reckless, despite her intended message.

Majority of the negative comments were received by black men.

They accused Muhammed of highlighting perversion and sexuality amongst toddlers. However, Muhammed defends her video.

She states that “The World needs more love like this”.

What are your thoughts, did she take brotherly love too far?

In the African-American community, it seems like we’re so afraid to teach boys to show affection because we’re in fear of them being gay. However, that’s a disturbing label to put on toddlers.

Do you think this warranted the drag session she received in the comments? She decided not to take the video down despite its controversy.

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Money Moves: New Year’s Financial Checklist Part 2

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Thanks for checking out Part 1, and we’re back with Part 2!  Let’s get to it!

Do you have savings?  This may sound like a silly question, but it may surprise you.  Did you know that 57% of Americans have less than $1000 in savings?  Are you included in that group?  If so, don’t feel bad.  You can turn this around.  The old saying is “plan for a rainy day”.  Well my new saying is “plan for a tsunami”.  An emergency fund of $1000 is a great place to start for savings. This will come in handy to pay for unexpected car repairs or medical bills, or an array of actual “emergencies”. $1000 may seem like a lot, but if you could put away $20 a week for one year you can attain this goal.

After you have allocated your emergency fund, you can focus on your general savings. A great way to save is to set savings goals.  Do you want to buy a new house? Are you in the market for a new car?  Perhaps you’ve been eyeing a new designer bag or shoes.  Whatever it may be, set savings goals and be diligent about achieving them.

Also, did the holidays hit you hard?  Have you been dying to take that trip to Dubai?  Creating a holiday fund account can ease the unnecessary stress of Christmas shopping, and reduce the risk of going into debt.  Summer will be here before you know it.  If you start saving now in a vacation account, you can take that dream vacation and do it in style.

 

Stay tuned for Part 3!  Have questions? We love to help!  Leave a comment or for more specific questions, email me at [email protected]

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