How much is Enough When Saving for Retirement?

Wouldn’t we all love a definite answer to this question? The short answer is that there isn’t one – it all depends on your specific financial goals. If you don’t know where to start, then it’s a good idea to speak to a financial advisor. He/she will use his/her expertise to help you draw up a financial plan that is tailored to your needs and match it to the best financial investments available.

However, here is some advice to help you plan for retirement.

Try to save 75% of your final salary

A reputable financial advisor should tell you that for you to live comfortably, it’s best if you aim to have an income that is equivalent to 75% of your salary. This amount is based on adjustments that many people are likely to make as they get older such as increasing health expenses.

However, this ‘rule’ doesn’t account for every individual. It omits to take into account your health, plans or lifestyle expectations. It also doesn’t tell you how much you need to save. Therefore, it’s important to have a comprehensive understanding of your personal financial goals.

You need to put away at least 17% of your salary from age 25

The above statement is based on the assumption that living off 75% of your pre-retirement salary is feasible. However, that amount may not be possible for all young adults.

Nevertheless, it’s a good idea to start becoming disciplined with your money and not spend it recklessly. This will go a long way to ingraining a rational mindset that sets you on the right path.

Remember to account for lifestyle inflation

Should you be lucky enough to receive a salary increase, it’s important to keep a level head and think rationally. The allure of a new car, a bigger house, and other luxuries is tempting, but this instant-gratification mentality, won’t serve you well in the long term.

Instead, contribute the extra money to your retirement savings.

Here are some top tips that will potentially help increase your retirement savings

  1. Prioritize your retirement savings when you get additional income. In the long term, it’s a much better decision to put any additional income towards saving for retirement instead of spending it.  
  1. Possibly, delay retirement so that you can give your investment more time to grow both through your contributions and return on your investment.
  1. Lessen your income requirements by re-thinking your lifestyle priorities and try to implement changes that will allow you to contribute more towards your savings.
  1. Consider supplementing your retirement savings with additional options such as saving in a tax-free investment account or a unit trust, which both give you more flexibility and easier access to your investment.
  1. Consider getting advice from an independent financial advisor if you are uncertain how much you should be saving. He/she will be able to help define your financial objectives and draw up a realistic plan of how to achieve them.

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Five Ways to Make Money From Your Car

Whether you’ve been behind the wheel for years or have just purchased your first car, there’s one thing that most drivers can agree on: getting and staying on the road can be costly. It’s not just the initial car purchase that you need to think about; insurance, car tax, fuel, and regular maintenance costs can all quickly add up each month or year. In fact, for many drivers, expenses can mount up so quickly that they may even consider getting rid of their car and finding an alternative way to get around. But the good news is that there are several things that you can do to help your car pay for itself.

#1. Rent Your Car Out:

Today, there are many car rental schemes that provide a cheaper alternative to renting a car from a big-name brand. If you drive on the weekend but your car tends to be parked up throughout the week, it’s literally just sitting there costing you money for five out of seven days. Instead, it’s a great idea to consider making some of that money back by renting your vehicle out to others, with a potential income of £3,000 a year to be made. Don’t forget to double check with your insurer before renting out your car; you may need to change your policy to avoid it becoming invalid.

#2. Rent Out Your Parking Space:

Perhaps you’re in the opposite situation to the above, where you’re driving your car almost every day of the week. But if you commute to work, that leaves your parking space available for most of the day. Renting out your parking space can be a great way to make some extra income, particularly if you live in or close to a city centre. Busy locations such as cities tend to be congested with very few parking spaces, and if you are able to find somewhere to park it’s usually very expensive. So, it’s no surprise that many drivers are looking into alternative options such as privately rented spaces.

#3. Advertise with Your Car:

Driving around with ads plastered on your car might not be the most aesthetically pleasing of options, but it can certainly help you make some extra cash to pay for your wheels. It is even better if you can find a brand that you love and don’t mind using your car to promote! And, the adverts are usually stickers that can be easily removed from your car once you’re done, making it a very worthwhile option to consider if you are in need of a temporary solution to make some extra money.

#4. Car Share:

If you’re the kind of person who’s always offering people lifts, then why not make some money from it? If you commute to work on your own, then you have empty seats in your car, which could be taken by colleagues or even friendly strangers who are travelling in the same direction as you. You can find several websites or apps that allow you to sign up and offer your services as a lift-giver, and passengers will cover their cost for the ride. Bear in mind that if you’re hoping to make a profit from carpooling, then you’ll need to notify your insurance company and change your policy to ensure that you are still covered in the event of an accident. In addition to the money side of things, car sharing is kinder to the environment and you’ll have a more interesting commute when you’re able to use it to meet new people.

#5. Selling Your Car:

Last but not least, although it might not pay to help you keep your car on the road, making the most money from selling your current vehicle is always best if you want to use the funds to help you upgrade to a new one. There are many reasons why you might be considering selling your current vehicle – perhaps your family is expanding and you need a bigger car, maybe your car is getting old and you’re worried that it won’t be roadworthy for much longer, or perhaps it is time for a change. Either way, there are several options. Selling your car privately will usually make you the most money, although if you have a fairly new car in good condition, it might be worth seeing how much you could make by selling it to a dealership. Older cars that are not going to last much longer will be harder to sell – market them for parts or sell to the Scrap Car Network for some quick cash.

Running a car today can be one of your biggest expenses, but smart drivers can work to ensure that their car is paying for itself. Which of these methods will you try? We’d love to hear from you in the comments.

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Heal Adrenal Fatigue and Thyroid Naturally

A few months ago, I was diagnosed with adrenal fatigue (HPA Axis Dysfunction) and hypothyroidism. Since I started Natural Desiccated Thyroid in addition to various supplements, I have seen improvement. However, the healing road is a journey and I’m learning that every day. There are some days I feel amazing, and some days I feel not so amazing. I truly believe I will feel “normal” again one day soon, and I wake up every morning with that hope. I’m going to share some tips that I believe are really helping my body heal in hopes it will help someone else as well!

Prioritize Sleep. I shared this before, but I think it’s worth repeating. I think good sleep habits are huge in your wellness. I make sure to get to bed by 10 PM to make sure my body is asleep before the spike in cortisol, which can keep you awake for hours. I make sure the room is at a temperature I find best for sleeping, wear a sleep mask or use blackout curtains, and if I’m going to use any natural sleep aids, I try to do so about half an hour before I get in bed. Some natural sleep aids I use are melatonin (this I use rarely as I’m afraid my body will stop making it if I use it all the time) and l-theanine (calms anxiety and puts the brain in a parasympathetic state).

Stay on top of supplements. I recently started taking this multivitamin, and I think it’s helped so much. I have the MTHFR gene mutation, so my body does not detoxify properly. Taking extra B vitamins helps with the detoxification process, and the selenium and zinc in the multivitamin can help the thyroid convert T4 to T3. I have also started iodine painting, which basically means putting a drop of iodine on my skin (this is the brand I prefer) and letting it absorb. I’m nervous to take iodine internally, so I feel much safer with just putting it on my skin for my body to absorb what it needs.

Work on liver health. The liver is so important to the body’s overall health, and I’ve been diligent in my quest to help support my liver. I have been drinking dandelion root tea, as this helps support bile production and detoxification. I am also very careful about the beauty products and cleaning supplies we bring into our home. We use a lot of baking soda, vinegar, and essential oils to clean. I feel good about not exposing myself and my family to the toxins in conventional cleaning products. I know personally if I smell synthetic fragrances, they give me a headache that can linger all day. It’s just not good for you.

Limit stress and say no. Limiting stress is a huge part of the healing journey. For many, stress is what caused their adrenals and thyroid to become fatigued. By limiting the amount of stress in one’s life, the real healing can start to occur. So many hormones are affected by stress, and by saying no to over commitment and yes to what you actually want to do, you can work on balancing those hormones naturally.

Disclaimer: I am not a doctor, this is just my personal experience with hypothyroidism and adrenal fatigue. Some of the links in the post are Amazon affiliate links- I make a very small commission off them, which will help me buy my supplements.

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