Exciting News!

Just a short post today as I have some exciting news to share.                                               Romans ebook cover

As you may know, I run J.A.Scott Publications (www.jascottpublications.com), publishing ebooks, mainly through Amazon.  We now have three names, plus my own, on our label and Alex Boxall has just released his first book.  It is a 28 Day Bible Devotional focusing on the book of Romans.

I am very excited to see the other books in this series which Alex is already working on.I am also pleased to announce that Peter Bangs has almost finished his book on how to use story telling techniques to share his message more effectively and that will be released very soon.

J.A.Scott

P.S. If you like any of the books we have published so far, please check out Luke Strickland’s book Life Space, also available on Amazon.

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5 Things your Bank Manager does NOT want you to know

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As we all know, the banking industry is simply there to make money from the likes of you and I.  They do this by playing on fears and half-truths that, whilst not propagated by the banks, are definitely left uncorrected.

Here are what I believe to be the top 5 Things your bank manager does not want you to know:

1.  You do NOT need a good credit rating.

Credit ratings are simply there in order to allow you to borrow more money.  Ironically, the banks perpetuate the idea that in order to get anywhere in life you need to build a good credit rating.  In order to do this you need to borrow money.  When you do this, the banks profit.  Your credit rating increases and you are then allowed to borrow more money.  And the banks profit more. “But I need a good credit rating to get a mortgage!”  Not true – you simply need to be able to prove you can afford the mortgage payments.  Evidence of employment, salary, banking history and so on will make this more than possible.  You may have to fill out a couple of extra forms, but its a small price to pay for remaining debt free!

2.  You do NOT need a Credit Card “just for emergencies”.

However they are sold, credit cards are bad news.  They encourage spending and discourage saving and ultimately lead to being trapped in debt.  Instead of getting a credit card to pay for emergencies, why not set up an emergency fund from which you pay for any emergencies?  That way you will never owe the banks anything.

3.  You do NOT need to pay extra for premium banking services.

“Only” £10 a month will get you travel insurance, or phone insurance, or a guaranteed overdraft, but is £120 a year too much to pay for these things?  Most home insurance will cover mobile phone damage.  Unless you are travelling abroad for more than one or two holidays a year then it would be cheaper to buy insurance as and when you are going.  And as we already know, overdrafts are a no no.  So, £120 for some unwanted benefits is not ideal, but it does make the banks more money…

4.  You do NOT need a loan for a car, a holiday or anything else.

Deferred gratification is a skill worth having as it will keep you out of debt and free from the chains the banks are desperate to put you in.  Learn to save.  Instead of making debt repayments, make purchase prepayments.  Set yourself up a savings account, workout how much you could afford to pay every month towards the car or holiday of your dreams, and rather than having to pay for it for 3, 4, 5 or more years, you could probably prepay for it in two and never owe anything to the bank.  Sounds ideal to me.

5.  You do NOT need an overdraft facility.

If you are budgeting correctly and have good control of your finances, then having an overdraft facility is just an excuse to put more money in the banks coffers.  The banks have enough of your money.  It’s time to stop giving them your money in the form of overdraft interest charges and start making them work for you.  Save.  Keep an Emergency fund and make sure that you never need to borrow money again.

Remember: the Banks are there simply to make money from you.  Do not let them get away with it. It’s time for you to make money from them!

If you would like to know more about managing your finances and would like to get out of debt quicker than you thought possible, then check out my book; The 21 Day Debt Revolution and start changing your life today.

The Quickest and Simplest Way to Get Out of Debt

It is so easy for debt to grow into what appears to be Mount Everest.  An insurmountable climb, with no end in sight.

We look at our debt and all we can see are the many, many zeros on the end of our statements.  And always printed in red…

We assume that it will take years and years to pay it all off, disappointment and depression sets in and we take out our credit card, buy ourselves something to cheer us up and forget about it for another day.

And as we do, the mountain grows and the cycle goes on…

But what if I told you that there is a simple way to get out of debt that won’t take you years and years to do?

It doesn’t involve shady companies, offering you paid-for-services that will get you out of debt in five years, while they quickly profit from your financial mistakes.

All it involves is determination and a little hard work.

So, here goes:

1.  Identify your goal – Write down exactly how much debt you have.  You need to know exactly where you are right now so that you can work out exactly what you need to do.

2.  Stop your debt – Cut up your credit cards and make sure that there are no direct debits or recurring transactions due to come off your cards.  The debt can’t grow any more.

3.  Set up an Emergency Fund – Open a savings account where you will save up to £1000.  This is for use in emergencies only.  Work some overtime, sell some stuff, just make sure you save up £1000 as quickly as possible.

4.  Create a Budget – Spend all your money on paper before you spend it for real.

5.  Use the Snowball Method – Pay off your debts, small to large, overpaying as much as you can afford.

If you follow this simple five step plan, you will be out of debt much quicker than you might expect.

Is it easy?  Not always.

Will you have to make sacrifices?  Of course you will, but a victory without sacrifice is no victory at all.

Can you do it?  Absolutely.

If you would like a more concrete plan to help you create life-changing habits and that will place you firmly on the path to debt-free victory, then please check out my book The 21 Day Debt Revolution.  Not only does the book give you a 21 day plan to get out of debt, but it also provides you with access to The Freedom Fighters Toolkit, a toolkit that will help you harness the power of habit and will give you a great advantage in your battle against debt.

Grab you copy from Amazon now!

J.A.Scott

5 Things Couples Say That Destroy Their Financial Future

Argument

Just sharing my thoughts on some things that couples say that set the relationship down a surefire path towards financial problems:

1. “We’ll do the budget tomorrow…” – The easiest way to start losing your grip on finances is to put off doing a budget.  I won’t sugar coat it, setting up a budget can be boring and can lead to arguments and disagreements that are never pleasant.  Not doing a budget, however, leads to debt, resentment and massive strain on relationships and finances.  Once you have set a budget it should be fairly easy to make any small adjustments needed.  Don’t put it off…

2.  “I’ll just put it on the credit card…” – the truth is that no matter how well intentioned you may be, unless you have complete control over your spending, using a credit card will invariably lead to debt.  The worst kind of debt.  “just” putting things on the credit card means you’ll suddenly be faced with a £1000, £2000 or even £5000 bill and you will have nothing to show for it and no idea where that money went…

3.  “This is all your fault.” When talking about finances, laying blame does not get you anywhere.  Blame causes resentment, anger and bitterness along with a sense of withdrawal when it comes to discussing finances.  This invariably means that your finances will suffer.  And so will you.

4.  “You never…/You always…” – Using the words “never” and “always” are what I call “button” words.  They are accusatory words that always lead to arguments.  In future, instead of saying : “You never stick to the budget…” try saying: “I feel loved when you stick to the budget because…”

One is very negative, the other encourages change…

5.  ”      ” – Simply not talking about money makes the conversation become taboo and as we know, “a problem shared is a problem halved”.  Failing to share the problem, on the other hand, compounds and multiplies the problem.  As the old advert used to say: “It’s good to talk!”

It’s be great to hear any comments you may have, both positive or negative!

J.A.Scott

If you’d like to find out more about this topic, check out the Newlyweds’ Guide To Money. On Amazon now.

Audiobook Update

I am very excited today!Audiobook Cover

The Audiobook version of The 21 Day Debt Revolution has just hit a landmark sales point.

I never dreamed that so many copies of the audiobook would be sold in less than a month.

If you haven’t heard it yet, then do head on over to either Amazon, Audible or iTunes where you can listen to a sample of the book or download it.

I hope you enjoy listening to it as much as I enjoyed writing it.

And the last thing I have to say is thank you to Mr Kevin Archer who did such a great job on narrating the book.  He has an amazing voice and I am certain that it is his amazing talent that has helped sell this many copies.

(As you can tell, I am quite excited, so apologies for this out of the ordinary post.  Normal tips and advice will resume shortly…)

See you soon!

J.A.Scott

If you do not have a way of listening to Audiobooks, or would rather read it instead, then please head on over to either Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk where you can download the kindle edition or buy the paperback.

Freecycle

There is so much waste in this world.

Mahatma Ghandi once said: “We have more than enough for our needs, but not enough for our greed.”

Ultimately, this is the real reason that there is so much famine, poverty and debt in the world.  So many of us spend so much money accumulating things we want, forgetting that there are people who have little to nothing.

We build up debt in order to own things which we later throw away when the newer, shinier version comes out…

Now, I realise that there is no way that I could possibly change this culture from the pages of a blog post, but I would like to bring your attention to a way of saving money and minimising waste.

Freecycle is an amazing concept where people give away items they no longer need or use, that would otherwise be put in the garbage or simply left to rot in an attic or loft.

This means that not only is less damage being done to the environment, but those involved are allowing others to save money.

To find out about your local freecycle, just go to www.freecycle.org and sign up.

This is a great way of making your money go further, particularly as you can request things.

So, whether you need a new bedside lamp, or a new bicycle, or you fancy learning to play guitar, take a look at freecycle, and maybe you might just find what you need with a 100% discount!

J.A.Scott

The emotion of money.

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As my friends and family know, I’m a bit of a serial dieter.  My weight has been an issue ever since I hit my late teens.  It tends to fluctuate up and down.

The only positive that can be gained from that is that I have learnt a lot about different diets and nutrition.

But what does this have to do with finances?

Well, most diets will teach that you have to remove the emotional element from eating. Eating is not there to support any kind of emotional need.  It is purely fuel and therefore, once that is ingrained in your thinking, dieting (allegedly!) becomes easier.

Money is exactly the same. Lots of people have an emotional attachment to money, viewing it as either positive or negative.

Ultimately money is simply an object that you need to choose how to use. It is neither good nor evil.  Many people get too hung up on the emotions associated with spending or saving money, which ultimately leads to failed budgets, overspending or miserly, tight-fisted behaviour.

It is important to get over this attachment and the simplest way to do this is to budget and learn to rely on your own forward planning and control rather than on the emotions that come from your personal attachment to money.

If you own my book, The 21 Day Debt Revolution, I describe the simplest system of budgeting in Day 20. If you would like to change your financial position, I would recommend that you complete the budget on day 5 and then have a quick read of Day 20 and use the Envelope system from the get go.

This will make you think about your spending much more.

Just remember, it’s you who controls your money not the other way around.

J A Scott