- Money Dominating Toolkit
- Investing & Retirement
- Life Insurance
- Managing Investments
- Managing Bills & Budget
- Get Out of Debt
- Peer-to-Peer Lending
- Tracking Credit Score
- Day to Day Banking
Money Dominating Toolkit
I get constantly asked the best tools to get out of debt, start a budget, open a Roth IRA, and keep track of your portfolio.No more stressing required. Everything you need is below.
Below you’ll find the best of the best in various facets of the financial industry. Before you dive in, read this important disclosure.
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Don’t worry, we don’t let the potential of a commission get in the way of telling you about the best in the industry. And we’ve turned down opportunities to promote tools that didn’t line up well with our readers’ best interests. No commission is worth losing your trust.
If you read through this list and don’t find exactly what you’re looking for, or you just aren’t sure which option to pick, drop us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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- 2 free chapters to my best selling book, Soldier of Finance.
- Our Top 6 Tools to Get Your Money Back on Track
I get asked all the time what’s the best money tools out there. Here’s our top 6 picks.
- Soldier of Finance inspired budgeting guide
Easy way to get your budgeting on track.
- The Bad Habit Destroyer
Learn how eliminate bad financial habits in 21 days
- Goal Achiever Worksheet
Setting goals is HUGE. This is the same goals worksheet that I used to grow my business by over 100%.
- The Situation Report
Got some debt to take down? This guide will help identify where you need to start.
- The Life Insurance Super Saver Checklist
People often overpay for their life insurance. I won’t let that happen to you.
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Investing and Retirement
Six months into my career, not much changed. Sure “I thought” about investing and did put a measly 3% into my 401k, but it still wasn’t a priority.That is until a client meeting that changed my life.
The meeting was with a couple who were in their early 60’s and thought it was time to finally meet with a financial planner. After the usual pleasantries, we got down to business to see how I could help them.
In the meeting I learned how concerned they were about retirement. They knew they had social security in a few years but weren’t confident it would be enough. To make matters worse, their entire life savings was just over $30,000.
No pension, small social security checks, and $30,000 in investments is all they had.
They were stressed and it was evident.
Scottrade is an online and brick-and-mortar discount brokerage firm, which is one of the reasons why we like it so much.
Not only do you get inexpensive trading costs, but if you ever want to sit down with a live human being you can at one of Scottrade’s 500+ branches around the country.
The firm has kept their trade costs steady at $7 per stock and ETF trade for years.
Mutual fund trades vary based on the type of fund with a maximum trade commission of $17. (But you shouldn’t be doing a ton of trading in mutual funds anyways; see below.)
Jeff likes Scottrade so much he even created an account there himself with a video that takes you step-by-step through the account opening process with Scottrade: Opening a No Fee Roth IRA with Scottrade.
E*TRADE is one of the bellwethers of the online discount brokerage industry.The company has been around since 1992 and has constantly been pushing the industry to better technologies and other trading innovations for customers.
Technically E*TRADE does have brick-and-mortar locations for you to go to, but there are only 30 in the entire country. E*TRADE is primarily an online discount brokerage firm, and they are one of the leaders in the industry. Their trade fees are just slightly higher than a few others, but there is no minimum deposit required to get started.
- Account Set Up Fees for Roth IRA: None
- Account Maintenance Fees for Roth IRA: None
- Minimum Deposit to Open Account: $0
- Commissions on Stocks, ETFs, and Mutual Funds: $9.99 per stock or ETF trade, maximum of $19.99 per mutual fund trade
Tradeking is an online discount brokerage firm with some of the least expensive trade fees available. $4.95 for stock and ETF trades is crazy talk. Plus no-load mutual funds are reasonable at $9.95 per trade. If you want to get funky with your investing you can trade options with Tradeking for just $0.65 per contract (plus the $4.95 base).The company is a strong competitor to bigger firms with brick-and-mortar stores thanks to a merger with another smaller discount brokerage firm, Zecco. The two companies combined forces to bring low prices to every customer. The firm was rated #1 for Customer Service by Smart Money from 2010 to 2012 as well.
Give Tradeking a try. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.
TD Ameritrade – An all around great brokerage with especially easy Roth IRA rollover tools (they say it takes 15 minutes or less to set up your IRA), with one glaring problem: $49.99 trade commissions no-load mutual funds. Yikes.
Betterment – A different twist on investing. Instead of hitting you with trade fees and confusing investing options you select from two options (a basket of stock ETFs versus a basket of Treasury bonds) and are charged anywhere from 0.15% to 0.35% of the total assets you have invested with the firm.
Vanguard – Slow and steady wins the race, and automatic investing into low-cost index funds is about as steady as it gets when it comes to investing. Vanguard is known for having incredibly low fees on its index mutual funds and ETFs, so building a portfolio through automatic investing is a great and inexpensive choice.
It’s reported that over 55 million households don’t have enough life insurance coverage. Are you a statistic? We don’t want that…. Going without the right levels of insurance puts you and your family at great risk.Typically for auto and home insurance we just go with the least expensive national brand. I got really frustrated on the life insurance side of things. Life insurance is one of the most critical insurance policies you can buy, but most people don’t. That’s what I started the Life Insurance Movement (see video below) to bring attention to a need that many families ignore.
When it comes to managing your day to day spending you have a system in place currently. Whether or not that system is ideal we can’t tell you, but you’ve got something that you’re doing.Instead of trying to convince you to use an Excel spreadsheet to track your spending or to stuff money in envelopes and store them throughout your house, we’re going to focus on two big wins that should make managing your finances a lot easier.