How to Master your Finances

This blog is intended to teach you how and where to start in order for you to become the best financial manager that money can buy. It will cover:
-What are your options when it comes down to saving vs spending?
-How personal finance differs from business as well as public investment banking
-How debt works within society

money management tips” will help you get a better understanding of how to manage your finances. This article is full of helpful information that can help you improve your financial situation.

Vintage banker sitting on the chair in his office.

Note from the editor: This is a guest article by Jeff Rose. Mr. Rose was last heard from when he graciously agreed to offer us an insight into the life of a financial adviser. Today, he teaches us how to be financially savvy.

Jeff Rose is a co-founder of Alliance Investment Planning Group and an Illinois Certified Financial Planner. He also runs the site Good Financial Cents, which focuses on financial planning and investing. Jeff’s website, Jeff Rose Financial, has additional information about him.

A man’s life is littered with possibilities for him to make his mark. The undeniable label of “Stud” is the title that all men seek and hope is uttered in the same breath as their name. Being a stud in elementary school meant making the basketball team’s starting five and being the first to french kiss a girl. It was riding around in your slick hot rod in high school, leading the football team to state, and getting the squad’s sexiest cheerleader. The beer bong was introduced in college, and you could tell how much cooler your parties were than the ones down the street. The next studly era of your life occurs after college and far into your work. Women don’t care how much you “could” bench press at this point in your life, or that you did 21 shots in one night (and survived to tell about it), or that you came close to winning the state title in 2004. They want a guy who is in charge of their money and has a strategy in place. They’re looking for a financial stud.

Have some cash on hand

You should have some cash in your wallet and in your bank account. I make it a point to have at least $100-$200 in my wallet at all times. That’s strange for me to say since I’ve always worked at an ATM. I have cash on hand in case my debit card doesn’t work. Having some cash on hand looks great whether it’s for buying the next round, giving a nice tip, or simplifying the sharing of a meal bill.

But don’t keep all of your money in your wallet. You should also keep a sufficient quantity of cash in your savings account to serve as an emergency reserve. Having a reasonable quantity of money in your savings account demonstrates that you are financially responsible and have the discipline to save money. How much is sufficient? 3 months of your monthly household costs is a good start, but if you want to be a genuine financial stud, aim for 6-8 months. If you want to feel like Arnold Schwarzenegger in his prime, a 12-month period will provide you with “the pump.”

Do you have a debt problem? Remove it from your life.

There’s nothing less appealing than bearing additional baggage, whether you’re young or elderly. Having a mound of debt is far worse than having flabby love handles. To be sure, I asked Mrs. Micah, a fellow female blogger, for her opinion on what makes a guy a financial stud. “I believe being debt-free is attractive,” Mrs. Micah adds. It demonstrates your independence, opens up your future together, and so on.” Anyone who has suffered with debt knows how difficult it can be. It’s much harder when you have to pass that responsibility on to your partner. If you have debt, having a strategy to get out of it can help you maintain your stud status.


Don’t bother with the bench press… Maximize Your Roth IRA

If you’re a younger investor, maxing out your Roth IRA each year is the equivalent of bench pressing 415 repetitions. Let’s imagine you’re able to save $5,000 in a Roth IRA by the time you’re 25 years old. If you do this over the next 30 years and earn an average of 8%, you’ll have a $600,000 tax-free nest fund ready for you when you retire. You’ll be one happy stud when you’re eventually put out to pasture.

Become an expert in 401(k) plans.

Many times, I hear clients choose funds in their 401(k) based on what their coworkers are doing or because the fund seemed interesting. Don’t be that man, whatever you do. Because it seemed the most aggressive, I had a buddy in his early twenties who was putting the majority of his money into the “Total Return Fund.” It was a bond fund, plain and simple. Granted, it helped him avoid huge losses during the last year, but it’s not the best long-term plan. Don’t take your 401k advise from the water cooler; instead, conduct some research on Google.

Budgets are enticing.

A financial stud doesn’t simply spend for the sake of spending. Every month, a guy has to know where his money is going. If spreadsheets aren’t your style, try jotting down your bills to see how much money you’re spending on a monthly basis.

Take my word for it, but don’t take my word for it. To get a handle on your money, visit J. Money’s site, Budgets Are Sexy. Here’s what J. Money has to say about it: “In a nutshell, budgets = confidence = manliness. Long answer: Budgeting is critical to being financially savvy. You’ll know your capabilities and limits if you know where your money comes from and goes. You can outsmart your opponent at any moment if you understand your strengths and limits. You’ll also be able to make rapid judgments on the moment, which is something that females like. And do you want to know what else females adore? Confidence. And this is what the budget provides for you, my buddy.”

Don’t fall victim to the Superman Syndrome.

When you’re single, life insurance isn’t as vital as it should be, but when you have a family, it should be. Let’s face it, there’s a 100 percent possibility you’ll die. That’s better odds than Sea Biscuit had in the Kentucky Derby, last I looked. The last thing you want is to pass away prematurely and leave your family in financial ruin. Allow me to give you an example. As a customer, I had a married pair with a physically fit husband. He wasn’t overweight, he didn’t smoke, and he exercised frequently. He was a doctor with a bank account that made him a true stud. Unfortunately, the wife and their two children were left without a father due to an unanticipated severe heart attack. Thankfully, the father had enough life insurance for his wife to pay off what little debt they had left, pay for their children’s college educations, and provide the wife the choice of not having to work for the rest of her life. Dealing with the death of a loved one is difficult enough, but adding financial stress may throw a grieving family into chaos.


Are you a money dynamo? It’s not too late, don’t worry. Make a vow to change if you lack some of these studly characteristics. In no time, you’ll move from “dud” to “stud.”

If you liked Jeff’s piece, you can find more of his writing at Good Financial Cents, where you can also subscribe to his RSS feed.



The “money management tips for adults” is a blog post that provides some great money management tips. These are the types of things that you should be doing to make sure your finances are in order.

Frequently Asked Questions

Whats the 50 30 20 budget rule?

A: The 50/30/20 rule is a budgeting strategy that helps you spend your money on whats important. It says that in order to achieve financial freedom, you should aim for spending no more than 50% of your income on necessities like housing, food and transportation; 30% of it can be spent on wants such as social activities or luxuries like eating out every day; the last 20% is left over for savings

What are the 5 principles of money management?

1. Budgeting – knowing how much you have, and ensuring that it is spent appropriately
2. Getting out of debt – analyzing the budget to see where extra money could be saved or generated that would help pay down loans or credit cards
3. Saving for the future – prioritizing which investments will provide a high return on investment (ROI) in order to ensure your financial portfolio pays off when needed
4. Making smarter spending decisions- improving income by avoiding frivolous purchases and learning from mistakes made with previous budgets 5. Invest wisely- making sure you are getting an appropriate ROI on your investments

What is a simple rule for managing your finances?

A: The most important thing to remember is that you should have a budget in place and stay within it. Then, when your funds dwindle, cut back on expenses until the money starts coming in again.

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