Category Archive: Popular Posts

Big Goals Require A Bold Plan

It’s confession time.  For the past six months, I’ve been coasting.  After more than a decade of focusing on our personal finances, I took the gas of the pedal and relaxed a bit.  I spent rather freely, wandered away from our budget, and stopped writing.  It was fun (sorta), but the time has come to get refocused and rededicated.  The new year is coming fast and we want to be prepared and excited, not broke and unorganized.

I have a plan for the next few weeks – a plan that will hopefully help us reach our financial goals for 2017 – and beyond.  I have outlined what I hope to accomplish, both with our finances and with my various web sites.

This post will serve as an anchor post – and I’ll link to it and from it, as I move step-by-step through each part of our plan.  Bookmark this post and check back often – and subscribe to No Credit Needed to keep up with our progress.

First Update: Day One, Getting Started

Leave comments with suggestions and thoughts about our plan.  My stretch goal is to eliminate by 25% of our monthly expenses – and increase by 25% our monthly income.

The following is a basic outline of our plan – some quickly-typed-out ideas.  Over the next few days, we’ll flesh out each idea, each step, and I’ll write corresponding posts.  I literally have dozens of ideas for improving our finances and removing clutter.  I’ll be writing about these over the next few weeks!

Personal Finances:

1. I need to update our list of financial accounts – including credit cards, checking accounts, savings accounts, retirement accounts, mortgage information, and insurance accounts – with current information.

2.  My wife and I will then create a brand new zero-based budget, incorporating current expenses and income.

A.  We will take a look at both fixed AND variable monthly expenses.  We have already decided – we need to be eating more meals prepared at home – and we need to reduce our daily convenience spending.

3.  I will login to Credit Karma and Discover and check our current credit scores.

A.  I need to do some research on the impact of credit line increases on credit scores.  If there is a positive benefit, I will contact each credit card company and request an increase in our available credit.

4.  I need to start gathering documentation – tax and salary information – for a possible mortgage refinance.  Any positive change in our credit score should impact any new mortgage rate.

A.  We are considering slowing our debt reduction progress and stock-piling a bit of cash.  We have several major purchases in the next few years and we do not want to have to borrow any more money.

B.  We will explore several options for refinancing.  Our goal is to increase monthly cash flow, because we have several major expenses coming up in the next few years.  We will crunch the numbers and (hopefully) make the wisest choice.

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Online Content

1. I plan to create a publishing schedule for my main site – No Credit Needed.

2. I need to do a much better job of monetizing No Credit Needed.

A.  I will research and apply for content-appropriate advertising and affiliates.

B.  I will write periodic posts, seeking site-wide advertisers.  By the way, if YOU are interested in advertising your family-friendly product on No Credit Needed, contact me, and let me know what you have in mind!

3.  I need to focus on producing content for my other sites.

4.  I plan to learn more about promoting my site(s) via social media – and growing relationships with other content producers and consumers.  By the way, please take a minute and follow me via twitter.com/NCN and facebook.com/NoCreditNeeded.

5.  I need to regularly encourage readers to sign up for No Credit Needed updates, via email.

6.  I have an inventory of unused domain names.  I plan to research possible resale value – and consider launching new sites.

7.  I may begin to create video-content and audio-content for several of my sites.

A.  I need to research the best audio and video tools available for content producers.

B.  I need to promote new YouTube channels – but ONLY after I have learned how to produce user-beneficial content.

Remove Clutter, Reduce Monthly Expenses, And Make Some Extra Money

1.  I will sort through our closets, my shed, our attic, and various other “storage” areas in our house – and we WILL sell, sell, sell the things we no longer need, use, or want.

2.  I will contact every, single, one of our service providers, including, but not limited to, our cell phone provider, our satellite television provider, our internet provider, and ask for discounts and reduced rates.

A.  The time may have come for us to cut-the-cord and eliminate our television package.  I need to do a bit of research, because there are some sporting events that my son and I really enjoy.

3.  I have a couple of opportunities to take on some extra work – mainly part-time stuff in the evenings.  I need to run the numbers and decide if these opportunities are worth pursuing.

4.  I need to contact other content-producers and seek out writing opportunities.  If you are a fellow personal finance writer – and we’ve never connected – or it’s been years since we last chatted – contact me and let me know what you are up to.  I look forward to meeting new folks – and reconnecting with others!

Take a minute and bookmark this post.  I’ll also link to it in the right-hand column of this page.  I am excited about our new focus – and I’m looking forward to developing the above mentioned ideas.  The new year is right around the corner, and we plan to hit the ground running, energized and prepared.

I will update this post with links and plan-modifications, as well as results.  Blessings!

Side note:  Just so you guys know I’ve not been a complete slacker – I’ve been dealing with some now-resolved health issues, which were affecting my ability to sleep.  I’m all good now – and have a renewed focus and lots of energy.

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2008’s Best Of The Best – February

I want to thank those of you who have supported No Credit Needed during 2008. I thought it might be fun to take a look back at some of the most popular posts from the past twelve months – the best of the best.

February 2008 –

February 2:  My Favorite Books About Debt Reduction

February 3:  Debt Cures For Living Debt Free – Here’s how I live without borrowing money.

February 7:  Living On A Budget: Don’t Knock It Until You Try It – I’ve been living on a budget for almost four years, and I couldn’t live without one.

February 18:  Paying For Three Kids To Go To College Is Going To Be Expensive

February 25:  10 Things To Do After You Get Out Of Debt –  Getting out of debt is only the beginning!

February 27:  Building An Emergency Fund: Where To Keep It?

February 28:  Facing The Frustrating Realities With Which We Must Deal – My reflections on the current economic meltdown.

2009 is shaping up to be another remarkable year for No Credit Needed.  I want to again thank all of you who have supported the site.

If you would like to help No Credit Needed reach an even larger audience, here are a few things that you can do.

You can subscribe to No Credit Needed via RSS or Email.  Either way, you will always have the freshest No Credit Needed content.  Click here for more information about subscribing to No Credit Needed.

You can comment.  I love to hear from my readers, and comments help create a conversation between you, me, and other readers.  Comments take two or three minutes to show up, so please be patient.

You can promote No Credit Needed and each post via social media sites.  At the bottom of each post, you’ll see a little reminder that reads –    Share: add to tip’d – digg this – stumble it – save to del.icio.us – where you can quickly and easily add posts to your favorite social media sites.  If you don’t have accounts with all of these services, consider signing up.  Each service is unique, and each service will help you promote the sites you like and find new sites to enjoy.

You can link to No Credit Needed.  Do you have a website?  Feel free to add No Credit Needed to your blogroll or list of links.  If you do, be sure to contact me and let me know!

You can follow my Twitter updates.  Twitter is a strange, wonderful, unique networking site.  I really can’t describe it, but I sure do like it.  Consider following me and creating your own Twitter profile.

I sincerely hope that you will continue to enjoy No Credit Needed.  Almost four years ago, when I sat down at my computer and started this site, I would never have dreamed, in a million years, the impact that it would have on me and my life.  I have met so many good people and I have learned so much from my readers.  You keep me motivated and you keep me involved.  I can’t think of a better way to put it – You ROCK!

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2008’s Best Of The Best – January

I want to thank those of you who have supported No Credit Needed during 2008. I thought it might be fun to take a look back at some of the most popular posts from the past twelve months – the best of the best.

January 2008

January 9:   Building A Better Budget With The New Baby On Board –  In April, my wife gave birth to our third child, a beautiful baby girl.  While preparing for the baby’s arrival, we created a brand new budget.  The baby is now eight months old, and she’s the sweetest thing in the whole wide world!

January 10:  Time To Call The Credit Card Company –  For those who are in credit card debt, this is a must-read.  Do not settle for your current interest rates!  Grab your phone and start making some calls.

January 25:  Back To The Basics : How To Get Out Of Debt –  Here you go, a super-simple guide for getting out of debt.  I’ve written about this subject, over and over, but with today’s economy, articles like this one are more important than ever.

2009 is shaping up to be another remarkable year for No Credit Needed.  I want to again thank all of you who have supported the site.

If you would like to help No Credit Needed reach an even larger audience, here are a few things that you can do.

You can subscribe to No Credit Needed via RSS or Email.  Either way, you will always have the freshest No Credit Needed content.  Click here for more information about subscribing to No Credit Needed.

You can comment.  I love to hear from my readers, and comments help create a conversation between you, me, and other readers.  Comments take two or three minutes to show up, so please be patient.

You can promote No Credit Needed and each post via social media sites.  At the bottom of each post, you’ll see a little reminder that reads –    Share: add to tip’d – digg this – stumble it – save to del.icio.us – where you can quickly and easily add posts to your favorite social media sites.  If you don’t have accounts with all of these services, consider signing up.  Each service is unique, and each service will help you promote the sites you like and find new sites to enjoy.

You can link to No Credit Needed.  Do you have a website?  Feel free to add No Credit Needed to your blogroll or list of links.  If you do, be sure to contact me and let me know!

You can follow my Twitter updates.  Twitter is a strange, wonderful, unique networking site.  I really can’t describe it, but I sure do like it.  Consider following me and creating your own Twitter profile.

I sincely hope that you will continue to enjoy No Credit Needed.  Almost four years ago, when I sat down at my computer and started this site, I would never have dreamed, in a million years, the impact that it would have on me and my life.  I have met so many good people and I have learned so much from my readers.  You keep me motivated and you keep me involved.  I can’t think of a better way to put it – You ROCK!

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