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5 Steps to the Best Budget

If you haven’t been following the news recently, then you’ve been missing out on quite the political battle in Washington, DC over our nation’s debt. I’d go into more detail, but the specifics and grand-standing would probably give you a headache. To make a long story short: we need to cut spending and raise revenues, but neither party can agree on a way to move forward and the President is left shaking his head at party leaders behaving more like spoiled children rather than statesmen. Our national budget may be a mess, but yours doesn’t have to be. Creditnet has an easy, 5-step process to making sure your budget is sound so you don’t end up with a crippling debt like Washington.

Best Credit Cards for Bad Credit

One of the most common questions I receive from Creditnet readers is "How can I rebuild my bad credit?"  My responses generally include several suggestions, but the first recommendation I give is always the same- you need to build positive payment history. Sure, there are quite a few other tricks you can try that may provide short-term credit score boosts, but building positive payment history will have more of a lasting effect on your FICO scores than anything else.

Using Credit Cards to Fund Your Small Business

Credit cards can often be a double-edged sword. When used incorrectly, they can destroy the most seasoned financier. However, when used in wisdom, they can be a powerful wealth generating tool. Perhaps you own a small business and supplies need to be purchased today to ship to a customer, but you won't actually receive payment for a couple of weeks? While new businesses low on cash flow may find difficulty in funding short-term operational needs, interim cash flow shortages can often be remedied through the use of credit cards and other forms of revolving credit. In fact, using no interest credit cards can be a great way for entrepreneurs to fund small expenses while getting a business up-and-running. Access to quick cash is essential for nearly any business’ operations, and even after you've passed the zero interest grace period, the card can still be useful in the normal course of one’s business dealings.

Top 4 Places to Use a Credit Card

It seems like everywhere you turn on the internet these days, there's a blog post warning of all the dangerous places to use a credit card. While there certainly are shady businesses out there that you should be wary of handing your precious plastic to, it's summer and thus a great time to focus on the positives. For every business that may have a negative impact on your credit history, there are countless more that remind us of the joys of using credit cards. Here are just a few of the best places to savor every swipe.


Three Essential Steps To Improve Your Credit


Credit scores. . . To many of us, they seem like arbitrary numbers that can be frustratingly impossible to manipulate. To others, credit scores are quite the opposite; understanding and improving them has become a challenge from which many financial benefits can flow. When I sit down with a client who has been dealing with less-than-wonderful credit, they usually know which financial mishaps and choices got them there. And although time and the responsible use of credit cards for bad credit should help them finally regain control, understanding what makes up a credit score could have kept them out of trouble in the first place.

Save Money with a Summer Staycation

Girl relaxing on her staycationSo you’ve seen the sun, the surf, the sand, and you’re ready for a vacation that doesn’t give you bathing suit anxiety or an empty bank account. You’re not alone.

Conventional vacations can be costly, stressful and leave you feeling like you’ve been through a triathlon rather than tranquility. Many wise travelers have opted for “stay at home vacations”, or staycations, to avoid the expensive hassle and enjoy their immediate environment more than ever before.

How do You Savor a Staycation?

Master the Art of Laying

When’s the last time you curled up under the covers while nibbling on a croissant? You haven’t? I knew it. There’s nothing better than being still and getting cozy.

Sleep in. Eat breakfast in bed. Cultivate calm.

Things You Used to Be Able to Buy With a Penny

I was fortunate to spend more time than usual chatting on the phone with my Dad for Father's Day last month. We should definitely spend more time talking, because he’s a great man that has taught me some of the most important financial lessons in life: budgeting, leveraging 0% interest credit cards and loans, and working with my spouse to find common goals and aspirations. Like most older gentlemen, he has also spent hours upon hours telling me about how things used to be. One of his stories popped in my mind during work today, while I closed a savings account that had one cent of unposted interest. As I made a joke to my client about not spending all that new interest in one place, I remembered my dad telling me of all the things he used to be able to buy with a penny.

The Best Gas Credit Card for Summer Road Trips

TrueEarnings® Card from Costco and American Express There's no doubt you felt some pain at the pump this weekend if you hit the road for a 4th of July getaway. With the national average for a gallon of regular gas hovering around $3.57, even Prius owners can be overheard complaining about gas prices these days. But the big question is where will prices head the remainder of the year? While no one really knows, I think it's safe to say we'll all be better off if we seek ways to limit our gas consumption and prepare for higher prices to stick around permanently. I've had several friends completely ditch their cars this year in exchange for bikes, but I also live in a city that makes this switch fairly easy. Even without a bike, you can get around just fine in Seattle on foot and public transportation. For many though, ditching their cars just isn't a feasible option, so we turn to gas rebate credit cards as an excellent way to at least ease some of the pain at the pump. If you're on the hunt for the best gas credit cards, here's my pick for the one card that truly stands out among the rest:

Monetary Melodies: Top 5 Songs About Money

Money.  It's a concept that has simply captivated humanity since the beginning of its existence.  Some people love it.  Some people hate it.  And some people are simply obsessed with it.  But no matter your opinion on it, it's definitely something that's had a tremendous influence on your life. Maybe that's why people sing about it so often.  Indeed, some of the best songs in music history have been all about money. Here are the top 5 songs that either exto the joys of money and credit cards, or push listeners to transcend the ills of materialism.

Luxury Metal Credit Cards: How to Get One

Credit cards can certainly serve as a status symbol. Why do you think so many Visa commercials feature a James Bond-esque motif? In particular, credit cards made of metal have long been a symbol of wealth and luxury. Now, such cards are extremely limited (many believe there are less than 10,000 in circulation), and they are generally distributed by invitation only.


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