Investing While in College

College students are notorious for being broke.  It’s not that they are too lazy to earn money with a job or that they waste all their money all the time, although for some this could be the reason.  It’s usually because of the high cost of education and the decreased amount of time to work.

Have you ever seen one of those calculators and figured out that if you invested X amount of dollars for 45 years you would have however millions of dollars?  It sounds too good to be true, but often with a reasonable rate of return, it’s very possible.  The two problems with this calculation are the assumptions that you have that much money and that you have that much time.

Start investing during your college years and you will have that much time.

If you are 20 years old and you plan on retiring at 65, you have 45 years to earn money.  Even with a small investment of $50 a month with an average rate of return of 9%, by the time you are 65 you will have over $350,000.  With an average return of 12%, that would be over $1 million.  Basically what this means is that every minute counts when it comes to investing.  Also, the earlier you start, the more risks you can take.  More risks mean the potential for more money.  You can take more risks because even if you lose money, you still have time to get it back.

But I don’t have any money?

Unfortunately, I am not going to tell you that you don’t need money to start investing.  You do, and the more the better.  What you will like to hear is that you don’t need a lot, and even college kids can get enough to get started.  If you can invest $1,000 a month, that’s incredible, but as a college student who probably don’t even make half that in a month, try shooting for $25 to $50 a month.  You would be surprised how easy it is to find this money.  Here are some quick ideas for getting your $25 minimum each month to invest.

  • Save Money from your check. This can be done by foregoing your expensive latte, skipping out on the movies a couple times, or dropping any other unnecessary expense.
  • Get a job. If you don’t already have one, get a job.  If you don’t need the money, than getting a job working a few hours a week will be plenty to get your $25 minimum or maybe even $50.
  • Earn some cash online.  There are several ways to earn money on your own on the internet if you just want to spend a small amount of time working.  Look around and you should find something to do to make $25 a month.
  • Work on campus. You can get a job on campus, but you can also do studies that give you cash as well as surveys, or go to your local plasma center and get paid for your plasma donation.
  • Be creative and start your own business. Make something and sell it on eBay or sell stuff to your friends.  Use your creativity.

How often should I invest?

If you only investing $25 a month, I would suggest investing on a bimonthly basis.  If you invest every month, you will end up spending a lot on commission fees.  For example, if you invest $25 a month every month through your broker, they will take out a small part each month for commissions.  You will have spent a lot on commissions and only invested a significantly smaller amount in investments.  If you invest the same amount but only every other month, meaning you invest $50 every other month or six times a year, you will have spend less on commissions and have invested significantly more.

How do I get started?

Investing is easier than ever now that you can invest with online brokerage firms.  You can invest any amount you want, although as I mentioned, I suggest a minimum of $50 at a time.

If you aren’t experienced with stocks, don’t have time to research them, or just want the hard work done for you, go the mutual fund route.  T

All you have to do to get started is sign up, send in the appropriate copies of material for security purposes, transfer your money, and place a trade.  It’s that simple.  By the time you graduate, if you invest $25 a month and earn 10% interest a year for 4 years, you will have almost $1,500 in investments.  Increase that to $50 a month and you’ll have almost $3,000.

Start investing today to secure your financial future!

How much Money do I Need to Start Investing?

If anyone tells you that you must have $10,000 in order to start investing, and better yet that they can give you a 30% return, you need to stay as far away from them as you can.You’d actually be surprised how little you can invest.

For example, if you lend $2 to a friend and say you want it back by the end of the year with 10% interest, you’ve just invested $2.Sure, you’ve only made 20 cents, and that’s if they pay you back, but that’s just my point.You don’t need $10,000 to start investing.You don’t need close to that.

It depends on what you invest in and where you invest.

If you are going to invest in a mutual fund, usually they require at least a $1,000 minimum. The same goes for some brokerage firms and often bonds and CDs, but there are many exceptions.

If you don’t have enough money yet, just keep saving until you do.

If you want to start investing now, but you are only able to put aside $20 a month, put the money into a high interest savings account until you have more and are ready to invest. Or better yet, put aside more than $20 a month.

There is no requirement that you need to start with this certain amount, at this certain date, and at this frequency. If you have to wait a year until you have $1,000 to invest in a mutual fund, wait. If you can only invest every other month, do that. Just the fact that you are investing puts you ahead of a lot of people.

Don’t use this as an excuse to make stingy investments.

If you are able to invest $2,000 a month and still live comfortable, by all means, do it! Don’t make excuses just because they’re there. It’s all about balancing between a livable lifestyle and securing a stable future.

The problem with a lot of people, myself included, is that we decide we have to go overboard with everything we do or not do it at all.If you can’t invest $1,000 a month, do what you can.If you can invest $1,000 a month, do it!It’s that simple.

In the end, the most important thing is that you invest and save for your future. You don’t know that social security will be enough, that you’ll still have your pension, or that you won’t end up on disability for the rest of your life. Having money set aside at all time growing all by itself will do a world of good for you, so take advantage of it.

6 Steps on How to Invest Money

Here are the 6 steps to get you started learning how to invest money. Follow these steps to get started investing. Once you are started and get the hang of it, continue learning about investing and tweaking your portfolio. Investing is a proactive activity; you can’t just ’set it and forget it’. Keep up with it and your money will begin to grow exponentially!

Step 1: Get Money

In order to make money through investing and before you learn how to invest money, you need money to start. You can’t buy a stock or bond without money. While you’re at it, get a significant amount of money. If you invested $10, it probably will grow, but $1,000 will grow much faster.

Start budgeting your money so that you can put some aside every month for investing.You could set aside $100 or $1,000, just remember, the more you invest, the more you’ll make.

Step 2: Practice While you Wait

If you don’t have any savings to start, it will take some time to get some seed money to start your investments. Hopefully it won’t take you more than a couple of months to get enough money to get started, but in the mean time, you can still start practicing your investments.

Read everything you can about investing so that you know what you are getting into and you know what to expect. Stay up with financial news with the WSJ or other financial news sources. If you are going to invest in the stock market and you want to give it a try without the risk, sign up with an online simulator. These simulation games are  absolutely free, that you can use to invest imaginary money but use real companies to get experience investing without losing money.

Step 3: Choose your Investments

Are you going to invest in stocks, bonds, mutual funds, real estate, derivatives, or something else? Diversify your portfolio and choose investments that you feel you can manage best and will make you the most money.

Step 4: Find a Broker

In order to buy stocks, you will need a broker because you can’t go down to Wall Street and buy them yourself even if you wanted to. A brokerage firm will place the trades you tell them to and follow your orders. You used to have to call up your broker whenever you wanted to buy or sell, but now you can do it online.

If you buy and hold stocks for the long term, this is perfect.

Step 5: Set up your Investment Plan

You can invest without a plan, but you might find yourself leaving a lot of money on the table. Make up a plan. When will you invest and how often? How much will you invest? How much do you want to have in the future? Make a plan and stay on track.

Step 6: Keep Investing

A lot of people try things and give up. Investing can’t be one of them. Just because you have a bad year or even a bad decade doesn’t mean you should give up, you just need to keep at it and keep trying to improve it.  Now that you know how to invest money, you must keep on investing.

Keep saving your money and investing it and keep learning all you can about building your wealth. If you want to become rich or even just financially secure in your future, investing is key!

Why Learn to Invest?

So they say you need to learn how to invest first. Is it really worth all the trouble of going through all that reading, studying, and learning just to invest invest, when you can just as easily pay someone else do it all for you? Actually, sometimes it is not a better choice. Maybe they could make more money for you then you could yourself, but that is always the case.

Yes, in some cases professional earn you more money. The most common cases are such as when you have absolutely no idea what you’re doing, when you have bad advice, we have no time to invest correctly, or if you’re just not knowledgeable enough to be effective investor. In most of these cases, you’d be better off hiring someone else to invest for you.

Do any of these cases match you? Whether you are in a completely different situation over you just don’t know how to invest, there is a way to make even more money than what a professional can get you some of the time at least. Have do you do this? You simply learn how to invest entirely on your own. It is not as hard as you may think it is.

You may be thinking that the professional can earn a higher return than you. If you’re talking about stocks or pretty much any investment for that matter it’s impossible for one person to know what to choose over another. A professional might know more than you, but that doesn’t mean that they will make a higher return. It’s a game of chance in the end, and with knowledge on your part you can do sometimes just as well.

Do you really want to make more money investing without having to pay professionals to do for you? All you really have to do is take the class, read some books, and/or basically study all you can until you are able to invest on your own.

Now that you know why you should invest, or better yet why you should learn to invest your money on your own, don’t waste anymore time. Start studying and start investing as soon as possible so they can make the highest return on your money.

Understanding Real Estate Terminology

Purchasing a home can be a complicated and confusing process, especially for first-time buyers. Throughout the process, first-time home buyers will encounter a variety of unfamiliar real state terms. There are several key terms associates with purchasing real estate that are helpful to learn.

For example, many buyers confuse the terms broker and salesperson. A broker is a properly licensed individual, or corporation, who serves as a special agent in the purchase and sale of real estate, a salesperson is an individual employed or associated by written agreement by the broker as an independent contractor. The salesperson facilitates the purchase or sale of real estate.

Once you decide to purchase, a salesperson will prepare a sales contract to present to the seller along with your earnest money deposit. The sales contract is the document through which the seller agrees to give possession and title of property to the buyer upon full payment of the purchase price and performance of agreed-upon conditions. The earnest money is a buyer’s partial payment, as a show of good faith, to make the contract binding. Often, the earnest money is held in an escrow account. Escrow is the process by which money is held by a disinterested party until the terms of the escrow instructions are fulfilled.

After the buyer and seller have signed the contract, the buyer must obtain a mortgage note by presenting the contract to a mortgage lender. The note is the buyer’s promise to pay the purchase price of the real estate in addition to a stated interest rate over a specified period of time. A mortgage lender places a lien on the property, or mortgage, and this secures the mortgage note.

The buyer pays interest money to the lender exchange for the use of money borrowed. Interest is usually referred to as APR or annual percentage rate. Interest is paid on the principle, the capital sum the buyer owes. Interest payments may be disguised in the form of points. Points are an up-front cost which may be paid by either the buyer or seller or both in conventional loans.

In general, there are two types of conventional loans that a buyer can obtain. A fixed rate loan has the same rate of interest for the life of the loan, usually 14 to 30 years. An adjustable rate loan or adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) provides a discounted initial rate, which changes after a set period of time. The rate can’t exceed the interest rate cap or ceiling allowed on such loans for any one adjustment period. Some ARMs have a lifetime cap on interest. The buyer makes the loan and interest payments to the lender through amortization, the systematic payment and retirement of debt over a set period of time.

Once the contract has been signed and a mortgage note obtained, the buyer and seller must legally close the real estate transaction. The closing is a meeting where the buyer, seller and their attorneys review, sign and exchange the final documents. At the closing, the buyer receives the appraisal report, an estimate of the property’s value with the appraiser’s signature, certification and sporting documents. The buyer also receives the title and the deed. The title shows evidence of the buyer’s ownership of the property while the deed legally transfers the title from the seller to the buyer. The final document the buyer receives at closing is a title insurance policy, insurance against the loss of the title if it’s found to be imperfect.

Buyers should plan on a least four to twelve weeks for a typical real estate transaction. The process is difficult and at times, intimidating. A general understanding of real estate terminology and chronology of the transaction, however, will help any real estate novice to confidently buy his or her first home.

Getting a good unsecured loan

Are you thinking about getting an unsecured loan? Because if you are, you should take in some information before going ahead with this. Getting the best unsecured loan takes a little planning and it begins with this article.

Start with looking into your credit report. Lots of people have faults on their credit reports and they aren’t even aware of it. And if these mistakes lower your credit score, it will cost you a pile of money. Be sure to review your credit report cautiously.

Before you approach a lender for an unsecured loan, be sure all the errors are removed from your credit report. Don’t apply with a lender without trying your best to take off the errors in your credit report. Even though it’s a bother, go over your credit report anyway.

To get the lowest interest rates, comparing is key. By comparing loan offers through the internet, you make this job a lot more easier. Always strive to make an apples to apples comparison. Check to see if the loans are for the same amount and have about the same terms attached.

There are many lenders willing to give you an unsecured loan. You have to watch out for the wrong lenders, because there are some out there. With the Internet, you can do some inquiries on a lender to see if he’s one of the right companies. Or, if you have friends that have experience with unsecured loans, ask them who they employed and if they were positive about the process.

Insurance Law: Duty of Disclosure

Insurance policies are first and foremost, contracts just like any other. However, one salient distinguishing feature of an insurance contract as against other contracts is that insurance contracts are contracts uberrimae fidei. What this means is that the parties are under a duty to exercise the utmost good faith to make a full disclosure of all material facts known to them which may concern the insurance contract. In other types of contracts, parties are not placed with any legal obligation to make voluntary disclosures of information on the contract and it is basically caveat emptor. But not so with insurance contracts.

Why are contracts of insurance or insurance policies subject to this duty of disclosure? Lord Mansfield in the celebrated case of Carter v Boehm [1766] 3 Burr. 1905 held that “Insurance is a contract upon speculation. The special facts, upon which the contingent chance is to be computed, lie most commonly in the knowledge of the insured only: the under-writer trusts to his representation, and proceeds upon confidence that he does not keep back any circumstance in his knowledge, to mislead the under-writer into a belief that the circumstance does not exist; and to induce him to estimate the risqué, as if it did not exist. The keeping back such circumstance is a fraud, and therefore the policy is void. Although the suppression should happen through mistake, without any fraudulent intention; yet still the underwriter is deceived, and the policy is void; because the risqué run is really different from the risqué understood and intended to be run, at the time of the agreement. Good faith forbids either party by concealing what he privately knows, to draw the other into a bargain, from his ignorance of that fact, and his believing the contrary.”

Therefore, the law makes an assumption that a person who enters into such a contract is possessed of facts which may influence the decision of a prudent insurance company in computing the risk to be undertaken. Without full disclosure, the insurer is unable to make a correct assessment of the risk he is about to insure and it is based on this inequality of knowledge that the Courts have developed the duty of disclosure. In many jurisdictions, the duty of disclosure has been given such importance that the legislature has passed laws to that effect.

Generally, the duty of good faith requiring a policy holder to disclose material facts is applicable at the time the insurance policy is concluded. The policy holder has a duty to disclose information having material bearing on the risk to be insured when he fills up the proposal form. It does not mean that he has to disclose all knowledge that he possesses. It requires disclosure of material facts only.

What are material facts which require disclosure to the insurer? How are material facts determined? Though there are conflicting views on this, it is widely accepted that an insured’s duty of disclosure is limited to information considered to be material by a reasonable insurance company as opposed to information considered to be material by a prudent insurance company.

What happens when the insurance company subsequently finds out that you have failed to disclose such material facts? In such an instance, the insurance policy becomes voidable at the option of the insurance company. What this means is that the insurance company is entitled to waive its rights and continue with the insurance policy as if disclosure was made or to treat the insurance policy as void from inception. The privilege lies at the hands of the insurance company to choose whether to continue with the insurance policy or to rescind the insurance policy.

It is therefore of utmost importance that a person who wished to take out an insurance policy faithfully discloses all material facts within his knowledge to the insurance company when applying for insurance coverage.

Insurance Law: Insurable Interest

It is not an exaggeration to state that insurance plays a crucial role in commerce as well as the day to day life of the common folk. Insurance coverage has been such a necessity that permeates into every sector of economy, which sometimes we just take for granted. Insurance provides the safety net to people so that they can go about their businesses or life with the comfort of knowing that in the event something bad might befall upon their businesses or persons, they can look towards their insurance company for indemnity.

Nevertheless, despite its importance, an insurance policy will only be useful if it is enforceable. It is, after all, a contract just like any other and would be dependent on the ingredients which make up the contract before it could be deemed enforceable. There are many factors which determine whether an insurance policy is enforceable but one of the most fundamental of all would be the requirement that the person who took out the insurance policy has a certain interest in the risk to be insured.

This interest which the person who took out the insurance policy must possess is what is known as an insurable interest. In essence, this is brought about by the workings of law which distinguished contracts of insurance from contracts of wager. Contracts of wager are contrasted from contracts of insurance because in contracts of wager, the parties to the wager do not have any real consideration for the making of such a contract other than the sum or stake he will win or lose. In contracts of insurance, the policy holder is required to have something much more in the risk being insured.

Insurable interest may be legal or equitable. A moral certainty of loss arising from the destruction of the insured property is insufficient to give rise to an insurable interest in the property. Therefore, the person taking out the insurance must show that he has either a legal interest in the property or an equitable interest in the property.

Legal interest in a property would be a much easier interest to prove. This may be the ownership of the motorcar that you are insuring. Your registration card for the motorcar which shows that you are the legal and registered owner would be proof that you have a legal interest in the property to be insured. Likewise, a house which is registered in your name would give you an insurable interest in the form of legal interest when you prove such interest through production of the land title.

Equitable interest being an insurable interest in an insurance policy can best be demonstrated in immovable properties such as a house. In a sale and purchase transaction for a house, the vendor is the legal owner of the property and thus has the legal interest which is insurable whilst the purchaser is the equitable owner of the property and thus has an equitable interest which is insurable when he places a deposit for the house. Another scenario would be for properties held on trust. Here, the trustees are the legal owners and thus have legal interests which are insurable whilst the beneficiaries to the trust are equitable owners with equitable interests capable of being insured.

In the absence of an insurable interest capable of being insured, the insurance policy issued may be declared null and void as if it had never existed. In most cases and by reason of insurance contracts being contracts of good faith, the insurance company is not put to enquiry on the insurable interest which a person who proposes the insurance has. The onus lies upon the person who wishes to take out an insurance to ensure that he has an insurable interest in the subject to be insured. Otherwise, he risks losing everything.

Insurance Law in Brief

Many people’s lives touch upon an insurance policy in one way or another. Sometimes, you do not realize that insurance policies are currently covering the place where you work, live or even the vehicle or journey you are traveling.

For instance, the car you are traveling on is likely to be insured by a motor insurance policy. In most countries, motor insurance is compulsory. Then, you may have purchased a personal accident policy to cover yourself against death or personal injuries arising out of an accident. Assuming you were traveling on that car pursuant to your employer’s instructions, your employer may have also purchased a group employee’s insurance policy to cover their employees who were injured whilst working. The list goes on and you get the picture.

What exactly is an insurance and why is law involved? Well, insurance is essentially a contract. In a nutshell, t is a contract between the insurance company and the policy holder wherein in consideration of the payment of an agreed premium by the policy holder, the insurance company promises to do indemnify the policy holder and / or any insured person/s named in the insurance policy against the insured perils. Therefore, you are essentially looking at a legally binding promise between the insurer and the policy holder with all the terms reduced into writing in the form of the insurance policy.

The salient features of an insurance policy would be firstly, the parties to the insurance policy namely, the insurance company and the policy holder. The policy holder may or may not be the insured person. For instance, the policy holder could be the employer (and he pays for the insurance premium) but the insured person is the employee. The beneficiary under the insurance policy could be either the policy holder, the insured person or another person altogether depending on the parties’ agreement.

Next, there must be consideration moving from one party to another. Here, there must be payment of an agreed premium before the insurance company is obliged to fulfil its promises under the insurance policy. That is why in almost all insurance policies, you will find that it starts with a preamble which declares that “In consideration of the payment of premium by the Policy Holder, the Company hereby will do … this and that”.

Just like any other contracts, the insurance policy, which is a contract or agreement, contains terms and conditions governing the rights and obligations of the parties to the insurance policy. Any dispute arising out of the insurance policy shall have to be evaluated against the terms and conditions to ascertain how the issues arising should be resolved. These terms and conditions may not usually be amended unless agreed by the parties to the insurance policy.

Apart from the above, there must also be an insurable interest i.e. there must be something which the insurance company can insure against. This can be in the form of legal interest or beneficial interest belonging to the policy holder. Unless there is legal interest or beneficial interest belonging to the policy holder, there is no insurable interest and any insurance policy issued would be rendered void.

Another important feature of insurance policies would be the duty of disclosure. Contracts of insurance are called contracts uberrimae fidei i.e. they are contracts of good faith wherein parties enter with a duty to exercise the utmost good faith and to make full disclosure of all material facts within their knowledge to the other party. Hence, most insurance policies would require that the prospective policy holder complete a proposal form and sign off with a declaration that he has disclosed all material facts known to him which may influence the insurance company’s decision whether to accept the risk or not.

Finding the Best Life Insurance Rates

Recent studies on life insurance show that more than 50 percent of the total population of the country has life insurance policies.  You can probably credit this to the increasing number of insurance companies who are willing to bend their rules just to give people the kind of coverage they want.

Often, people are actually looking for affordable or cheap life insurance rates.

However, when it comes to insurance, we know that cheap insurance does not covers well. Of course, we don’t need expensive ones so the challenge is to find one insurance rates that will suit our budget and our current financial status.

Getting Affordable Life Insurance Rates

Not all people can afford expensive life insurance coverage but many people want to have some type of life insurance to protect their family for any unfortunate eventuality.  So, many people are in the lookout for affordable or cheap life insurance rates.

Basically, however, if you want the best life insurance rates, you need to be perfectly healthy.  You shouldn’t be at any risk of developing a terminal illness and you shouldn’t have any existing illness.  People who can claim perfect health can also claim preferred life insurance rates.  “I’m healthy, but I may have some minor health problems.  Can I qualify for preferred rate?”

Unfortunately, no matter how much you would like to get the preferred rate, you cannot do so unless you are completely and perfectly healthy – without the slightest form of health problem.

Getting Cheap Life Insurance Rates

How to get cheap life insurance rates for your policy? It is a better idea to obtain as many life insurance quotes before you apply for a policy, because the premiums can vary according to the provider. For this, shop around in banks or other financial organizations to get the most competitively priced life insurance policy. The easiest way is to hunt online where you get instant free quotes. However, quotes are just a guide as they can change at any time.

Another thing to keep in mind while applying for life insurance is to be honest while filling out your application form. Also have a detailed check on the terms and conditions offered by different insurers. Consider the insurer’s financial stability and strength as well as the conversion options and restrictions for a policy before a deal. Some insurers offer cheap life insurance rates, but will be having some fraudulent things inside the premiums. So be careful while selecting a life insurance policy with cheap rates.

Getting Life Insurance Rates from Online Companies

There are many reasons why you should consider getting your quotes for life insurance rates online.  First and foremost, getting quotes for rates online is quicker and easier than locating all local insurance companies.  With just one click of a mouse button and you’d have access to numerous insurance rates.

Another reason why you should consider getting your quotes for life insurance rates online is the rates themselves.  You’d find the cheapest insurance rates online.  This is because online insurance companies incur lower overhead cost than your local insurance companies.  Advertising and marketing expenses online are also cheaper than offline advertising.

There are many online websites that offer reviews of online companies.  You’d find comparative reviews of the various life insurance rates online.  So, you’d most likely find the best rate online than you could offline.  All you just need to do is to look.