How to Manage Money Guide

How To Manage Money Guide:

Learn how to manage your money with our guide, including tips from top financial professionals on how to make the most of your money and save for a rainy day.

How to use a financial adviser

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008
How to use a financial adviser

The life of a financial adviser — it isn’t just numbers and money.

“It’s amazing the things we get into,” said Jeff Ashford, a certified financial planner in Oklahoma City.

Matchmaking, for instance. Ashford had been working with an unmarried couple, each of whom had their own children, assets and finances, when he suggested that things would be much simpler for them if their separate lives became one, you know, legally.

How to manage credit cards

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008
Bob Manista

A common theme among people with credit card problems is overconfidence in their ability to handle monthly debt, said the president of the Better Business Bureau of Oklahoma City.

“I don’t want to say they’ve lacked foresight. Maybe there were some unexpected circumstances, things just got of hand or they didn’t realize how quickly the interest rate was going to balloon into real money,” Bob Manista said.

How to create a monthly budget

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008

Creating a budget is a matter of tracking one’s earnings and coordinating it with one’s expenses.

Unfortunately, many of us exaggerate how much we bring home and can be a bit forgetful when it comes to how much we spend, said Margo Mitchell, president of Consumer Credit Counseling of Oklahoma.

How to avoid debt

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008

Dump credit card and other debts. Pay as much as you can as often as you can to reduce the principal that’s accruing interest.

If you only pay the minimum payment on a credit card, it will take years to pay off the card.

How to pay bills on time

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008

Paying bills on time is a matter of habit, says one Oklahoma expert.

And it’s a good habit that can save you money, said Margo Mitchell, president of Consumer Credit Counseling of Oklahoma.

How to pay bills online

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008

Paying bills online can save you time, money and hassle, but there are a few things you should know if you’re an inexperienced Web surfer.

How to get a loan

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008

Thinking about applying for a mortgage? Most economic experts suggest that prospective homeowners spend no more than 25 to 30 percent of their gross income on housing.

For most people with middle-income jobs, those figures will allow the purchase of a modest home.

How to refinance

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008

Wall Street credit markets are still sluggish and skittish, and questions still hang over mortgage lending ij the public mind, but refinancing mortgage and consumer debt still is not only possible but remains a good way to get ahead, lenders and borrowers said.

How to weather economic storms

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008

Preparing for economic hard times is a key to successful investing, local experts say.

A word that crops up during nearly all conversations with investment advisors is diversification.

How to plan for retirement

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008

For the past 15 years, Ben and Shirley Johnson of Edmond have enjoyed life as retirees from Phillips Petroleum, where Ben worked for more than three decades in information services.

How to save money

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008

Gas prices increase by the second these days, but paychecks seem to stagnate. As the cost of living skyrockets, here are some tips for saving big money.

How to save for the holidays

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008

Spring may be in the air, but experts say Christmas shoppers should have started saving money already.

“Every year, Christmas is in December,” said Jeff Ashford, a financial planner at Access Financial Resources Inc. in Oklahoma City. “Go ahead and plan on that.”

How to get a credit report, protect your credit

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008

Get your free credit report today. Thanks to a federal law passed almost three years ago, you can.

How to make the most out of your checking and savings accounts

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008

Financial experts say getting the best use out of everyday checking and savings accounts may be more important than ever.

Sue Lynn Sasser, associate professor of economics at the University of Central Oklahoma and executive director of the Oklahoma Council on Economic Education, said the nation’s shaky economy and rising gas prices are cause for people to pay closer attention to their finances and everyday spending habits.

How to choose a credit counselor

Published: Mon, Oct 13, 2008

Beware of companies who claim they can erase your debt, they can’t. Debts may fall off your credit report for a few months, but come back on.

Also, avoid companies that want to lump your debt into one big loan. They may reduce the amount of your debt, but make it up with a high-interest rate, so you’ll pay more over the long run.

How to become financially free

Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2008

* Save $1,000 for an emergency fund. Then, when an emergency arises, you won’t use credit to pay for it and go further into debt.

* Pay off all debt, beginning with the bill with the lowest account owed. When you pay off that bill, apply what you were paying toward it to the next lowest bill and so on, until you are eventually out of debt.