7 Important Financial Actions for Widows and Widowers

man in black jacket standing in front of grave

The loss of a spouse is challenging emotionally and financially. Death is an uncomfortable subject and few of us have prepared sufficiently to deal with the aftermath. However, if you find yourself in this situation, there are steps you can take to minimize the negative financial aspects.

grieving woman in black dress
Photo by Ksenia Chernaya on Pexels.com

When a spouse passes away, women are often in a more challenging situation than men are. On average, women earn less, save less, and start investing much later in life.

We will discuss what to do when you find yourself a widower. Some of the topics touched will be about widowers benefits from social security, insurance policies, and wills.

Consider these steps after the loss of a spouse

Acquire multiple copies of the death certificate.

You’ll find that you can’t have too many copies. It’s necessary to send a copy to the Social Security Administration, credit card companies, insurance companies, and many other financial institutions. The death certificate is necessary to verify your spouse’s death.

A death certificate is also necessary to change or remove names from accounts. This can also include changing beneficiaries.

Fifteen copies should be sufficient.

Contact the necessary professionals first.

Ideally, you’ll speak with a tax accountant and an estate-planning attorney before taking any significant action. These experts are knowledgeable on the financial ramifications of your situation. Before receiving an insurance payout or taking any other major financial step, speak with an expert.

Avoid taking the advice of well-meaning friends and family. Unless you know someone that works in an applicable field, their advice isn’t likely to be your best course of action.

Update your will.

It’s likely that your spouse was the primary beneficiary of your will. Updating your will is necessary for other reasons. In most states, your will becomes invalid when your spouse dies. This means the state will determine how your assets are distributed until a new will is created.

Contact the social security administration for widowers benefits.

You are probably eligible for a death benefit and a survivor’s benefit (widowers benefits). This can be a huge help with funeral expenses because widowers benefits are a lifesaver.

Ensure that you’re paying your bills on time.

It’s common during times of grief and stress to ignore day-to-day activities. Remember to take care of yourself and pay your bills on time. The additional stress of late fees and phone calls from creditors is the last thing you want or need.

Collect all insurance policies and contact the companies.

This includes life insurance, automobile insurance, any insurance provided by your spouse’s employer, mortgage insurance, and any other insurance.

In some cases, you’ll receive a benefit (like widowers benefits). In others, you may receive a refund when you cancel a policy that has become unnecessary. There are instances where you may keep a policy, but wish to change the beneficiaries.

Contact the Department of Veteran’s Affairs if your spouse was in the military.

There are funds available for funeral expenses. It’s also possible to receive monthly payments if your spouse was receiving disability benefits.

These are just a few of the necessary steps to secure your finances if your spouse passes away. It’s very important to work with the appropriate financial experts.

Most importantly, speak with your spouse before this circumstance occurs.

Discuss how these financial issues will be handled and get your papers in order. Take the initiative to get organized beforehand.

How to track expenses for small business

handwritten writing calendar business

All work-from-home entrepreneurs looking to make money online need to know how to track income and expenses. You must understand where your business’s money is going and how much it is costing you each month. People who are self-employed will benefit from tracking their progress on a monthly basis.

person writing on notebook
Photo by Lukas on Pexels.com

Why should you learn how to track income and expenses?

So you don’t lose out on a payment

Things happen, and you may not get the $250 payment you expected from your blog’s ad network for whatever reason. If you are not carefully monitoring your revenue, you may be unaware that money has not been put into your bank account. Alternatively, you may not recognize your payment was insufficient. Or you may not see the rise in the income you’ve accrued over time. Don’t depend on other businesses to make sure you are paid; instead, make sure you know what you’re making and where your money is.

To create a monthly budget for your company

Whatever way you generate money, the aim for any work from home business owner is to make more money than they spend. You don’t want to be making $50 per month but your costs are $100 or more per month.

This may be a reality in the early phases of your company’s development. However, as time passes, your earning-to-spending ratio should begin to resemble profit in your wallets. Tracking your accounts allows you to observe how much money comes in and goes out. With this information, you can build a useful budget that prevents you from spending more than you make. You may even be motivated to look for methods to reduce the expenses of running your company.

To reinvest in your company

As your monthly income increases, you may wish to raise your expenditures or reallocate that money more cost-effectively. When you monitor your money correctly, you can observe the increase and know when it’s time to invest in better hosting, outsource certain jobs, or buy new equipment.

To make tax preparation simpler

If you don’t know how to track income and expenses, self-employment taxes may be a headache. It’s difficult to tell the IRS how much money you earned if you don’t have the facts available. Tracking throughout the year provides you with this data. The data may then be provided to your accountant or enter into your chosen tax preparation program.

Make use of Google Sheets If You Can’t Track Income and Expenses with Excel

A spreadsheet is an excellent way to keep your money in line. This track income and expenses app allow you to simply enter all of your data and then utilize formulae to compute everything for you. It will immediately show you how much money you make and how much money you spend each week/month, as well as how your company is expanding over time.

You may view your income and expenditure spreadsheet using Google Sheets from any computer with an internet connection. This track income and expenses app, When you join up, utilizes your Google account credentials and stores everything to your account rather than a device. This implies that even if anything happens to your computer, you’ll still have the information since Google saves it for you…for free! There’s even a mobile app for Google Sheets that you can use to keep track of your company’s finances while you’re on the move.

Visit YouTube to learn more about using Google Sheets. You may enter some excellent formulae that will compute monthly totals and progress for you. You can also utilize the site to generate graphs and pie charts to see your revenue and expenditures.

Income Tracking

calculator and notepad placed over stack of usa dollars
Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

Set aside time at least once a week to review your incoming payments and cheques. It’s best to do it once a day, but once a week would do if you’re short on time. Because many work from home business owners have various income sources, they must ensure that everything is properly recorded.

It’s also a good idea to keep track of when each revenue source pays. If you have a planner or a content calendar, make a note of those dates and check in on them when your payments are due. Because ad and affiliate networks usually pay once a month, these will be simple to remember. Other sites pay you within a day or two after your sale. These kinds of payments are what make daily income monitoring so essential.

You may review your bank and PayPal accounts on a monthly basis to verify that you have properly recorded all of your revenue. Don’t wait much longer, or you’ll miss the payment window and won’t be paid at all!

Keeping Track of Expenses

Anything you spend on your company is an expenditure, and you should keep track of them just as meticulously as you do your revenue! Don’t forget to save your receipts.

When tax season arrives, you’ll be glad you kept track of your expenditures as well as your income.

Create a separate spreadsheet for expenditures so that you do not inadvertently enter spending into your revenue sheet.

Create common expenditure categories. This keeps them organized, visible, and simple to recall. Moms who make money from their blogs, for example, may include categories such as hosting, outsourced material, virtual assistants, travel, graphics, and online tools.

Owners of Etsy shops may have categories such as recipe or craft supplies. If you operate your company online, you may even be able to deduct a part of your home internet subscription!

Important: Save all receipts for anything purchased for your company. These receipts will be very useful when it comes time to submit your taxes each year. It’s also a good idea to keep a tangible record of your expenditures for personal reference and contemplation.

You should construct those spreadsheets now that you understand the significance of monitoring your income and expenditures as a work from home business owner and how to get started. The sooner you begin, the better, since it is always more difficult to retrace your steps! Let us know if you have any queries or useful tips after you sign up for our newsletter.

When you sign up for the newsletter, you will get a FREE GIFT: The Ultimate SEO Course for Beginners. This is a great source to learn SEO for people who are too busy to learn everything about SEO. It’s time to get more traffic to your site, the freeway.

How to cut household expenses

coins scattered on desk with papers and creative pig wallet

When we discuss how to cut household expenses, the first piece of advice that is usually given is to “stop consuming $5 coffees every day.” Well, if you’re anything like me, you’re never going to consume $5 coffees every day! $5 is a lot of money, and it quickly piles up. Cutting home expenditures and adapting to a new budget doesn’t have to be painful experiences. Let’s speak about some basic financial adjustments you can make in order to learn how to cut household expenses.

person performing coffee art
Photo by Chevanon Photography on Pexels.com

Carry out an audit to cut household expenses

The first step in conserving money is determining what comes in, what goes out, and, most importantly, where it all goes. Print out your bank statements from the last three to six months. If you’ve made recent modifications, 3 months of bank statements will suffice. If you really want to dive in and find out where your money has gone, print the whole 6 months.

Using highlighters, go over your bank statements line by line. Set it up whatever you like, but you might choose pink for revenue, yellow for essential expenditures, and green for superfluous costs or things to eliminate.

Next, look over all of the needless expenditures and determine which ones will be the easiest to eliminate. Make a list of which expenditures will be reduced first, second, third, and so on. You may do this in stages so that it is not a drastic shift all at once. If you have major budget leaks and are drowning in debt, you should take this procedure more seriously and reduce expenditures as soon as feasible.

how to cut household expenses: Repair the leaks in your budget

Rather than stopping everything and cutting down all of your expenditures all at once (which is unrealistic in the long run), make modest adjustments to “fix the leaks.” Any money that goes unaccounted for month after month is considered a leak. Any money that is wasted on fast food is a leak.

Utilities, food, and entertainment costs are examples of leaks you may not have considered at first. This does not imply that you must eliminate all forms of entertainment or convert to off-brand products for all of your meals. It simply means that you will be aware of where every single cent of your money is going so that you can ensure it is accounted for and spent properly. Everyone should have a budget for amusement, and no one should have to eat off-brand bread! 😉

Making sure utilities are negotiated so you can cut household expenses

If you’re not cautious, your cable, internet, and mobile phone costs may add up to a significant portion of your monthly expenditures. Downgrading to a lesser internet speed is impractical if you use the internet for business. If TV is a priority for you, you may simply cancel the cable and obtain Netflix or Hulu instead.

Negotiate a cheaper cost with your mobile phone provider. Inquire about military or veteran discounts, AARP discounts, and so forth. See if you can obtain any discounts they may have! Some businesses even provide discounts to police enforcement, first responders, and educators. If the savings are available and you qualify, you should take advantage of them.

Keep an eye on your food spending

Even if you don’t consume fast food every day, shopping costs may quickly mount up. When we began meal planning and utilizing curbside pick-up services, our shopping expenditure dropped dramatically. Ordering meals online and picking it up outside the shop may be one of the most cost-effective innovations ever.

No more last-minute impulsive purchases in the checkout line when you use curbside pick-up. It means no more Target trips that should have cost $50 but ended up costing $200!

Reevaluate your entertainment cost

How much money do you spend each month on entertainment? What is your budget for a Playstation membership or video game, going to the movies, or bowling? If you don’t already have one, now is the time to start working on one. As I have said, entertainment is essential. We don’t have to eliminate it entirely, but being conscious of how much we’re spending and ensuring that it corresponds to how much it improves our lives is an important step in reducing household expenditures.

After you’ve completed your home financial audit and repaired any leaks, it’s time to create an entertainment budget. Being on a budget does not require you to stay in your home all day, but it does need you to make wiser decisions with the money you’ve put aside for specific activities. Instead of paying $50 on a movie ticket, look for a theater that shows classic movies for $2 per person. Alternatively, enjoy movies at home with popcorn that costs one-tenth the price of movie theater popcorn!

vehicles parked in front of cinemark building
Photo by Ricardo Esquivel on Pexels.com

Making little adjustments like these makes budgeting to cut household expenses easier. You could even make it into a game. Make everyone in the family come up with the most cost-effective method to enjoy a family date night. Alternate between family evenings at home with board games and popcorn and outings. Finding inexpensive bowling days and times, cheap movie days and hours, and so on can keep your family entertained while staying inside your budget.

If you did not verify your recurring subscriptions via Paypal during your audit, you should do it now. Check your Cash App, Zelle, and other payment options as well. The plan is to keep track of every dollar that comes in and goes out. When you start performing this one basic thing, everything else falls into place pretty naturally!

The next steps…

After you’ve worked to reduce home expenditures painlessly, you may need to go back through and be even more brutal with your spending. Alternatively, you may focus on increasing your income via side hustles. You may drive for businesses like UberEats or establish your own online revenue streams, like hundreds of thousands of people do every day. Whatever your financial position is, it may be improved with proper planning and budgeting!

How to Raise Your Credit Score

selective focus photo of green plant seedling on tree trunk

If you’re searching for how to raise your credit score by 100 points or more, you may be feeling overwhelmed and irritated by all the advice you’ve been reading online. The reality is that establishing credit is easy. However, we often over-complicate things. Let’s take a look at five ways to raise your credit score so you can obtain better interest rates… and other benefits of having a higher credit score.

How to raise my credit score by 100 Points in 5 Simple Steps

The higher your credit score, the more likely you will be to qualify for a reduced interest rate, better discounts, and financing for bigger purchases such as automobiles and homes.

With all of the financial “gurus” telling you to do this and that, it’s easy to see why people are confused about credit. Raising your credit score may be a difficult task, particularly if you don’t know where to begin or where to go!

bank blur business buy
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Understand where you are before you can know how to improve your credit score

The first step in raising your credit score is to understand what it is. If you want to check how much your credit is improving at a look, a site like Credit Karma is great, but if you want to purchase a home, you’ll need a more precise figure.

Annualcreditreport.com provides a free copy of your credit report once a year. As an additional benefit, checking your credit report may assist you in detecting early indications of identity theft.

No matter what your credit score is, you can raise your credit score to 800+, so don’t be concerned if it’s in the low 400s. Many individuals start with a low credit score and work their way up to an 800 in a year or two. It may seem to be a long time at first, but in the great scheme of things, it is a blip on the radar. Spend a year or two focusing on increasing your credit score, and you’ll enjoy the rewards for the rest of your life.

Raise your credit score fast by knowing where you’re heading.

Set a target to raise your credit score by 100 points (or whatever your goal is). Unless you have numerous collections on your credit that you are presently unable to pay off, this may typically be accomplished in less than a year. Don’t be concerned if this is the case! You may be able to have some, if not all, of those collections taken down.

Add your credit score objective to your vision board, dream board, or even your phone background. Along with working hard to raise your credit score, see it occurring! How can you expect a better credit score if you can’t even imagine it? Here’s a hint: it can’t. Knowing you can achieve your credit score target is half the fight.

How to improve your credit score fast: send mail and make phone calls!

Write or type letters to the main credit bureaus and request that your collections be removed from your credit record. Also, write letters to the businesses to which you owe money.

Then, contact the collection agencies and seek pay-off amounts. If you have a $10,000 debt, you may be able to pay it off in half that amount – or less, depending on your circumstances.

While you’re there, go to experian.com/boost and connect your bank account. In most instances, individuals get an immediate credit increase just by demonstrating that they pay their utility bills on time each month. What’s the greatest part? Experian does not report adversely if you do not make a payment; instead, it raises your credit score.

Even if you just receive a 20-point increase, using small techniques like these throughout your credit-building path will add up!

Raise your credit score by paying your bills.

crop faceless person with cash and calculator app on smartphone
Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

Moving ahead, be sure to pay all of your payments on schedule, every month. Set up reminders if you don’t already have them on auto-pay. A single late payment may lower your credit score by more than 40 points!

If you’re having financial difficulties, check out my other blog articles on creating an emergency fund and setting up a side business. Side hustles often develop into full-time revenue sources! Making more money is the most effective method to pay off debt. The sooner you pay it off, the more money you’ll save in interest and fees.

Don’t be scared of Credit Cards

Many individuals make the mistake of being reluctant to sign up for credit cards while mending and improving their credit. Even if you’ve had a terrible experience with debt in the past, consider if you’re ready to take this step. If you are concerned about overspending, using a secured credit card may be a better choice.

A credit card will not be appealing if you are in the proper frame of mind. You may even set it up on auto-pay for something inexpensive, such as Netflix, and pay off the amount each month. If you’re tempted to spend extra, put the card away or have your spouse keep it for you. For most individuals, the simplest approach to purchase a house is to use credit responsibly.

After you’ve gotten your feet wet with a secured card, consider looking at other credit card choices. Don’t always follow Credit Karma’s recommendations; they’re there to earn CK money for referrals and aren’t necessarily in your best interests. Open a credit card with no annual fee, use it to pay a bill or two each month, and earn airline miles while improving your credit.

Again, if you’re scared of being reckless with your credit card, set it up for ONE payment on auto-pay every month, then tear up or conceal the card from yourself. Set up an automatic payment from your bank to your credit card so that it is paid each month. You’re not spending more money; you’re simply spending it differently, collecting points and building credit along the way.

Once you’ve become accustomed to properly using credit cards, you may begin paying most or all of your expenses with one that earns points or airline miles. Some cards also offer cashback incentives, which means you may save even more money while improving your credit!

Each credit condition is unique. Use these basic recommendations to get started on increasing your credit score as soon as possible!

Sign up for our newsletter for more information and a exclusive deals

How to make money while sleeping

woman sleeping

Sometimes it feels like sacrificing your time for money isn’t worth it; wouldn’t it be fantastic if only you could discover how and where to make money while sleeping?

If you want to discover how to make money while sleeping, keep reading for proven methods many people have engaged in.

You may indeed be paid to sleep in certain cases. Other methods help you make money while sleeping but require prior effort to create a cash flow.

17 Ways to Make Money While Sleeping

eCommerce

woman holding card while operating silver laptop
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

In 2018, a reported 1.8 billion individuals worldwide bought products online, with worldwide e-commerce revenues projected to reach $4.8 trillion before 2021

Furthermore, selling goods online will become one of the world’s biggest and most profitable businesses. Retailer e-commerce sales globally were 3.53 trillion Dollars in 2019, with e-commerce sales expected to reach  6.54 trillion Dollars by 2022

If properly set up, eCommerce may be an amazing passive income potential. Though if not designed to be passive, this may require high effort at first before you can sit back and collect an easy check.

Blogging

Blogging is a fantastic way to make money while sleeping. If you have a love for a concept to offer, you may want to start a blog, publish articles, and advertise your material. You can make far over $1,000 per month if you follow the proper approach.

According to reliable sources, a monetized site can expect to receive $1,000 per month in earnings once traffic reaches approximately 30k monthly page views.

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing may be a fairly passive method to earn money. It is a great and common method of monetizing a website or blog.

You generate passive income by selecting a product or service. Then you start advertising the product to your hand-picked audience and earn a commission on purchases made via your links.

Creating passive revenue via affiliate marketing is difficult because you must have a trusting audience.

However, with the proper skills and commitment, you can develop that following on YouTube or via blogging and turn online advertising into a very profitable and passive revenue stream.

Copywriting

Copywriting is yet another easy, profitable, and moderately passive method to make money. You may make the approach more passive, i.e make money while sleeping, by outsourcing the job, establishing an agency, or starting your site and monetize the links visitors click.

With the proper material, you may make more than $1,000 per month in earnings from writing.

Podcasting

Podcasts are quickly becoming extremely popular.  The outlet is great for teaching, entertainment, and exchanging ideas with people all over the world, while also providing the creators with good passive income.

A sponsored podcast may make you over $6,000 per month if you have the proper content and approach.

Placing advertisements, affiliate marketing, memberships, member contributions, selling goods, and other methods of generating passive revenue from your podcast are just a few examples.

eBooks

Writing and marketing eBooks may be a lucrative source of passive income. You may get money from novels you authored months or even years ago.

To generate passive income, all you need to do is find a niche subject, a target audience, create the book, and distribute it. This may seem to be difficult, however, it is not.</p>

Renting Your Space

multiracial couple watching laptop while drinking coffee in new apartment
Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on Pexels.com

The rental service sector is rapidly expanding because of reasons such as cost, risk, and changing societal patterns. More put, more individuals prefer renting goods and services over buying them. Renting everything from space to cars to personal belongings is possible.

Each participant may profit from the process, which typically consists of a community platform, lenders, and borrowers.

Sell on Amazon FBAw

You can offer your services and goods on many other e-commerce sites in the same way that you do on Shopify. Therefore, Amazon FBA is a viable trend.

Individual sellers may use this service to discover items to sell and then let Amazon manage the marketing and logistics. Amazon will display the goods on their website, handle the transactions with the consumer, and ship the goods.

Invest in the Stock Market

Stocks may be purchased via a conventional brokerage firm such as Fidelity.

If you don’t have enough money to begin with one of them, try “micro-investing” using apps like Webull.

These applications are inexpensive to start, serve as excellent free stock exchange apps, and allow you to gradually increase the money you deposit.

Flipping Things Online

Flipping anything online, from goods to web addresses, may provide a good passive income.

You generate passive income by purchasing goods at a low cost and then advertising and reselling goods at a greater price. You may make up to $1000 per month flipping goods and merchandise on popular sites like eBay.

Start micro investing

 Typical investing is great, but as mentioned, there is another option called micro-investing. Micro investments have grown in popularity in recent years because it eliminates some of the obstacles associated with conventional investing.

If you are unfamiliar with the term “micro-investing,” it is the practice of investing with tiny sums of money, even loose change.

It is typically done via an application, such as Acorns. It’s a wonderful way to get started with investing, but keep in mind that micro-investment implies tiny profits.

You won’t be able to retire on pocket money, but little returns do build up.

Rent out your car

You could have a vehicle, so why not make some money for it? It’s comparable to Airbnb. Apps that allow you to rent out your cars come in handy in this situation. All the app has to do is link vehicle renters with vehicle owners.

Start a Youtube channel

Youtube generally requires a lot of effort upfront. Those high-earning YouTubers did not become millionaires overnight. It took many years, and so it began slowly, as does posting to a blog.

Advertisement, sponsorships, the sale of branded goods, and fan contributions are all ways for Youtube stars to earn money.

It may ultimately seem passive, but the initial time and commitment are significant. However, after things are flowing properly, you can easily make views on your video overnight while you sleep and thereby make money.

Create an online course to sell

the greatest part of selling an online course is that if you like teaching others about things to benefit them, such as running a successful side hustle or increasing traffic to their websites, you will find the setup of a course a breeze.

But a good course is near impossible if you haven’t had more than a few years of studying and applying the information you are trying to teach.

That commitment of time pays off though. After you place your course online, it is accessible 24/7. So, as you sleep you get paid.

Therefore, if you already excel in something, establishing an online course is a fantastic way to generate passive income.

Sell stock photos

Shutterstock, for example, takes your pictures and then pays you whenever anyone uses them.

This is how it operates: When someone purchases access to your picture, you get compensated.

Alternatively, you get compensated when someone purchases a membership to the site and utilizes your photograph. Obviously, they must be high-quality photographs, but this does not imply that you must be a professional photographer.

I know a few great amateur photographers who have had no formal training.

Live-Stream Yourself Sleeping

Users of TikTok are streaming themselves napping in a new TikTok craze. As people watched him sleep, one 18-year-old earned approximately $10. A 24-year-old guy earned $50 by live-streaming his Tesla “sleeping” overnight.

18.5 million people watched a guy sleep on Douyin, TikTok’s Chinese equivalent. He made nearly $4,000 while sleeping.

Viewers love not just watching individuals sleep, but also conversing with other viewers. Do you want to make money while you sleep? Stream it now.

Print-on-Demand  merchandise

photo of person wearing white t shirt and blue denim jeans
Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

Have a great graphic design or picture that you think would look outstanding on a t-shirt, bag, cap, or anything else? You can easily print it on such things and then sell them. You even have the option of waiting till orders arrive before you have to pay and fulfill them.

CafePress is a prominent marketplace for this, selling virtually everything a design might be printed on. You may also list other people’s goods in exchange for a commission.

In conclusion, there are many ways to make money while you sleep. Often all it takes is some setup time before your commissions come rolling in while you do nothing and nape. This certainly beats a typical 9-5 job.

To learn more about how to make money online sign up for our newsletter