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Family Plan: Getting finances together starts with open dialogue

Plenty of households still have just one person that is in charge of finances, while the other person remains equal parts idle and hopeful when it comes to budgeting.

But being in the proverbial dark when it comes to how the money for the entire household is spent isn't exactly the most prudent and practical decision, particularly if the income being brought into the home isn't coming from just one person.

Simply put, it is your money, too, so shouldn't you at least know where it is going or how it is being spent?

A lot of husbands, wives, partners and spouses rely on their significant other to manage their money, put away for retirement and pay bills in a timely fashion and put a little aside into a savings or money market account.

The important element of that mentality is truthfully to no longer accept it, and turn financial planning into a family affair. This is especially important if the family is struggling financially, but the person in charge of the expenses and subsequent budget isn't speaking up or asking for help. Instead, they may allow things to get worse until they have no choice but to come clean on watching their financial future cave in at any moment.

Rather than start down that path, communication can be the ultimate salvation when it comes to fixing what clearly is broken. Granted, that might take some admittance on the part of the person responsible for the finances to simply ask for help, but the long run of that should be the start of pulling yourself out of this financial mess.

Full disclosure ultimately will lead to a second set of eyes and ears to help discuss how you can start whittling away at debt but also aligning what you make and what is being sent out every month to see if those numbers can be balanced.

Sometimes debt can lead to tough decisions but ones that should include all parties involved. Selling off a family vehicle, selling a home to move into something more modest or even the simple like holding a garage sale or getting rid of your cable or cell phone plans are options that need more than one person's seal of approval.

Putting pride or self esteem aside when it comes to how you're paying bills and managing money is paramount and shouldn't be perceived as failure but rather having the wherewithal and understanding that managing budgets isn't easy.
Especially for those who don't have help but more so than ones who don't end up asking for it.


Desperate Measures: Risky Money-Making Strategies to Avoid

Taking financial risks is can be a tempting approach for consumers under financial pressure. The allure of living financially worry-free always exists and many are willing to take risks.

Risky ventures do not have to wipe out a person’s bank account. In fact, a consumer can try some moderately risky money-making strategies with one $20 bill. The following are a few risky bets on making fast money with a small outlay of cash:

Scratch-Off Cards

Scratch-off cards are available at a multitude of convenience stores and shopping centers. The odds of winning on scratch-off cards vary with each company and card type. Card prices vary from $1 to $20 in price, and their payouts change according to their algorithms. By only spending $20 on the scratch-off cards, the consumer is cutting his or her potential losses. The best way to increase the odds of winning is by purchasing several cards. Buying 20 $1 cards has a higher success rate than buying one $20 card has.

Online Casinos

Online casinos are an increasingly accessible venue for trying to win big with a small amount of money. Many online casinos award new players by giving them free spins or free dollars. A new player could win money without spending any of his or her cash. The key to successful gambling is for the person to avoid going over the betting threshold. If the threshold is $20, and the person loses the $20, then playtime is over. However, winning requires a different strategy.

A winner could use the halfsies strategy. The halfsies strategy is a strategy that involves withdrawing the initial bet plus half the winnings from a winning wager immediately. The player should place the money in a savings account and forget about it. He or she can then use the rest of the money to bet as he or she sees fit. That way, the player is a winner no matter what happens with the other half of the money.

Sports Betting

Sports betting may be more comfortable for people who like higher odds. Boxing, football, basketball and baseball games can have 50/50 odds when a person bets on one team or the other. Sports betting sites, like other betting sites, offer sign up bonuses and incentives. New bettors can receive matches for up to 50 percent of their bets. For example, a new better who spends $20 may receive an extra $10 for betting. That $30 bet may earn the person $6,000 or more.

Small risks can often yield surprising returns, but do not amount to a sound cash flow strategy.


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