Amber lived paycheck to paycheck. After she paid all of her bills for the month, she had nothing left for added expenses, so she used credit cards to supplement.

Soon her credit card debt was so out of control that the minimum payments were well over what she could afford.

At one point Amber withdrew money from her retirement fund to try to payoff some of her debt. This didn’t solve the problem and the debt only rose again, higher. “I felt like I was drowning in debt and would never get my head above water.” Amber states.

When Amber felt like she exhausted all her options, she came across an ad from Century Support Services. “They put me at ease and were so informative and kind. They walked me through step by step of the entire process and came up with a solution that is custom for me,” Amber said “I am so appreciative knowing Century has my back and I can breath again for the first time in a while!”

Amber has been dedicated to her program’s success and after just 6 short months on Century’s debt settlement program, her largest debt has already been settled. This moves her closer toward enjoying her well-deserved better financial health.

 

Congratulations on your program success, Amber!

We thank you for trusting us to be a part of your journey toward better financial health and celebrate your diligence in staying with the program to make such great progress!

*We protect the privacy of our clients by changing their names and omitting any identifying details.

As parents, we all want what is best for our children. We work hard to educate them about the many risks they’ll face in life. We warn them about potential pitfalls and try to lead by example where we can.

If you’ve had financial struggles, your first instinct may be to shield your children from the realities of budgeting, rebuilding, and picking up and starting over. However, starting your efforts early, to educate your children about the realities of managing money can be one of the best gifts you give your children. One that will start them on a path to responsible spending and saving that will serve them well throughout their lives. Here’s how to begin.

The Three Pillars of Money

Famed money man, Dave Ramsey, believes that it is important to begin financial lessons early. He recommends that parents teach their children to approach money in three ways.

  • Spend
  • Save
  • Give

He even has several age-appropriate books that help parents work with their children to drive these lessons home. Rather than buying the books, though, consider seeing if your local library has them on hand to check out. If not, these are books that might be worth requesting at your library as they can help you and other parents share these important money lessons with their children.

Let Your Kids Put these Lessons into Practice

One of the best ways is to give them an allowance. This is no-strings-attached money that allows them to begin making financial choices for their lives. Your children can decide to spend their money, save up for bigger purchases, or even give their money to good causes. In a best-case scenario, your children may choose to do a little of all three with each monthly (or weekly) allotment.

Additionally, consider allowing your child to do chores around the house for extra money – and for family and friends if the opportunity presents itself, so they can put these lessons into practice further.

Set an Example for them to Follow

Living within your means isn’t always the easy choice. It is a choice though. Explain that to your children. Teach them about credit cards, interest rates, and why it is better to avoid unnecessary debt. Teach them about good debt (homes, education, investments) and bad debt (credit cards, high interest rate car notes, personal loans, etc.), and the value of saving for rainy days. Most importantly, explain to them that waiting until you can afford the things you want often makes obtaining those things that much more meaningful.

Finally, while you certainly want to be open and honest when discussing money with your children, you also want to keep these conversations age appropriate. Toddlers aren’t going to understand weighty discussions about compound interest. They may, however, understand the value of buying a single piece of candy today versus purchasing an entire bag of candy if they wait a couple of days. Older children have even more opportunities to compare the differences a few days, weeks, or even months can mean for their spending power. The earlier you begin having these conversations, though, the sooner your child can begin enjoying the benefits of exceptional financial discipline.

Our goal is to help you keep your money progress on the right track and provide you with the tools you need to help you and your children avoid unnecessary financial missteps in the future. These tips can help you stay committed to your financial goals while setting a solid example for your children to follow when managing money.

As you work hard to get your budget back in order, inflation is certainly doing you no favors. Therefore, now more than ever, it’s important to learn some ways to make some extra money while you are working on a fixed budget. Consider the following side hustles to learn just a bit extra and help offset inflation’s negative impact on your finances:

Deliver With Uber Eats

If you have the means to deliver food, such as having a reliable car or a bike or scooter, you can make some fast extra cash with Uber Eats or other meal delivery services, like Doordash. You are your own boss and can work at your own pace or as often as you prefer. There is no minimum amount you have to deliver to stay current. Simply download the app and enter your information to become an active driver. How much you can make doing this obviously depends on how often you can work, your area, and how well you are tipped, but many find it a good side hustle. 

Check Prices, Use Coupons

The adage, “a penny saved is a penny earned” very well exemplifies this tip. While not a side hustle in and of itself, you can save money by using this free service from Capital One when online shopping, ensuring you aren’t overpaying. This automatically applies coupon codes for free and helps you save on purchases you were going to make anyway, therefore, earning you money through your savings. 

Take Surveys

If you enjoy the act of taking surveys, Survey Junkie could be the perfect side hustle for you to try. You won’t get rich from doing surveys, but according to BBB ratings, this is a legitimate way to make some extra money, from the comfort of home or wherever you are. You can earn up to $45 per survey and are paid through Paypal. Of course, most surveys won’t bring in that much, but you get a general idea.

Watch Viral Videos

If you don’t mind mindlessly watching videos, check out this gig from Inbox Dollars. While you won’t make a killing, this is probably the easiest to accomplish side hustle on the list. As you spend time watching YouTube videos, this company will pay you to watch them and then take surveys. As you watch videos and take surveys, you earn actual money, up to $225 monthly. 

Downsize/Sell

Another way to make some extra money is to create a side hustle out of getting rid of excess belongings or furnishings. For example, vintage Christmas decor, kitchenware, and clothing are all currently bringing a pretty penny online at Mercari and through other similar sites. In addition, you can put virtually any item on eBay as well to get rid of stuff. If you feel comfortable, you can host a garage or yard sale. Of course, once these items are sold, there is no more merchandise to sell, so it’s a temporary side hustle. However, it will help you earn a bit of money and declutter your home, so it’s a win, win! 

Rent Out Your Space

If you own your home or have an asset like a pool or beautiful backyard, you can rent out your space for a great side hustle. Rent your living space through Airbnb and your beautiful pool space with Swimply. Of course, with this side hustle, you would have to be prepared to stay away— or out of certain areas of your home at least— in order to rent it out. However, you can really earn a pretty decent bonus income this way, especially if you live in a high-demand area.

 

Keep all the side hustles listed above in mind as you seek to find ways to stretch your budget even more. Unfortunately, thanks to record inflation, your budget is likely to get tighter and tighter no matter how hard you try to reduce spending. Thankfully, a side hustle is a great way to increase what you have coming in without requiring too much of your time. 

September is Self-Improvement Awareness Month, a perfect time to remind students (and everyone else) that the responsibility for personal growth requires ongoing focus and commitment.

September is also Eye Safety Month, an early fall reminder about the importance of taking care of and protecting one’s eyes and vision. Eye Safety Month is important because the modern landscape now delivers an increasingly digitized life.

Few could argue that most of life’s enjoyments and tasks can now be accomplished online – working, socializing, shopping, schoolwork, or simply learning about new things. Most people – young and old – admit to spending too many hours in front of a digital screen.

The result – is a common but preventable condition known as Eye Strain. Eye strain, which essentially describes eye fatigue, is uncomfortable but, fortunately, not serious.

Eye Strain Symptoms

The most common symptoms of eye strain may include any of the following – alone or in combination with one another –

  • Light sensitivity.
  • Dry, burning, or itching eyes.
  • Headaches or neck/shoulder pain.
  • Blurred vision.
  • Watery eyes.
  • Concentration difficulties, among others.

Eye Strain Causes

Eye strain is usually the result of intense, long hours during which your eyes must focus for extended periods. Eye strain has several primary causes –

  • Working with digital devices – is known as digital eye strain. Digital screens contribute to eye strain because Digital Devices –
    • Cause people to blink less, creating dry eyes, an underlying contributing condition of eye strain.
    • May have poor contrast and screen glare, which contribute to eye strain.
    • May be placed at an improper distance, potentially leading to eye strain.
  • Long-distance driving.
  • Reading.
  • Detail work like sewing, crafting, or writing, among others.

Dim lights, stress, uncorrected vision, prior eye conditions, and overall tiredness can further aggravate and contribute to an eye strain condition.

Diagnosing Eye Strain

Eye strain is diagnosed by an eye care provider. Eye strain symptoms can be reduced typically by implementing several lifestyle changes to those behaviors and actions contributing to eye strain.

However, most eye strain symptoms will disappear with simple adjustments to one’s lifestyle choices. If the condition becomes severe or does not disappear, seek further medical care to rule out other less apparent and potentially serious conditions.




Combating Eye Strain

As noted above, most eye strain symptoms are managed effectively with simple, proactive lifestyle changes.

The following offers several effective ways to treat or combat eye strain –

  • Employ the 20-20-20 Rule – digital strain can be reduced by taking a 20-second break, – every 20 minutes, to shift your gaze to an object 20 feet away.
  • Use lubricating drops, especially when your eyes begin to feel dry.
  • Lighting should be appropriate.
  • Use a tilting/swiveling screen that also filters glare.
  • Clean the screen to increase contrast impacted by smudge prints on the screen.
  • Use an adjustable chair to ensure your eyesight and distance is appropriate.

Some people find that humidifying the room or applying a warm wet cloth to tired eyes is helpful. Wearing blue light-filtering glasses – even without vision correction-may reduce digital screens’ impact on sleep/circadian rhythms.

Quitting smoking offers a host of benefits – including a big financial advantage.

The Take-Away

Fortunately, eye strain is usually a condition that is more of a nuisance than anything else. However, there are situations where it may develop into something more serious. This is when waiting for your annual eye doctor exam is not advised, as an immediate diagnosis may be necessary to help you feel better.

When Dustin found Century, he was on another debt settlement program, but he was not happy with the process or the quality of their customer service.

“It seemed to be taking even longer that I anticipated and I was stretching myself even further just to make their monthly payment” said Dustin. In order for Dustin to stay on top of his household expenses, he needed to make a change. That’s when a friend pointed him to Century Support Services.

“When I called Century, the Debt Specialist I spoke to was honest and was able to work WITH me. Century made me feel at ease and comfortable with my personalized plan” Dustin stated when explaining why he chose Century.

Dustin is now in the 11th month of his estimated 46 month program and is happy with his success so far. Century has settled over half of his enrolled debts and is working hard to get the rest of his debts resolved as well. “I’ve never had one company go above and beyond for me. I greatly appreciate Century being there for me and helping me out of a bad situation” said Dustin.

 

Congratulations on your program success, Dustin!

We thank you for trusting us to be a part of your journey toward better financial health and celebrate your diligence in staying with the program to make such great progress!

*We protect the privacy of our clients by changing their names and omitting any identifying details.

 


Contact Century to Learn About Debt Settlement

If debt settlement sounds like it might be the right debt reduction strategy for you, contact Century Support Services. Century has helped hundreds of thousands of people settle debts that they otherwise couldn’t pay, and has saved clients a lot of time, aggravation and money in the process. To date, Century has settled more than $1.3 billion in debt and maintains a 94% satisfaction rating.

To get started, you’ll receive our free assessment and our Certified Debt Specialists will create a personalized program plan for you.

To learn more about the debt settlement process or if you have any general questions relating to how long does debt settlement take or how long will it take to recover from debt settlement, we’re happy to answer any questions.
Contact us today!

 

Everything in life is more expensive right now with record levels of inflation wreaking havoc on countless American’s budgets. The current inflation numbers are hovering around 8%, which is higher than this nation has experienced in over 40 years. Suffice to say that even if you are cognizant of your spending habits, the inflation numbers have simply caused the cost of living to go up so high that it can be difficult to maintain your heading towards financial freedom. Thankfully, you aren’t without some form of recourse as there are some budgeting steps you can implement now to better navigate through increasing inflation levels.

Shopping Hacks

Often, one easy way to save money is to eat at home, preparing foods you have purchased from the grocery store. Unfortunately, today, Consumer Price Index reports that this cost has risen 10.8% over the past year. This is the largest increase in food cost since 1980. This means even eating at home has gotten more expensive. Thankfully, you can control how much you spend at the store and get back to your money-saving ways with a few notable shopping hacks, which are outlined below:

  • Plan: Don’t go into the store without a list and a plan of what you want to make. Don’t simply go look, as this will always end up as impulse buys are poor planning and end up costing you money in the end.
  • Shop Alone: When possible, shop alone so you can get in, get what you need and get out as fast as possible.
  • Stock up When Possible: When items you buy frequently go on a good sale, stock up, providing you have a good place to store items, or they will keep. Remember, it does you no good to buy food that you have to end up throwing away because you don’t get to it before it expires.
  • Opt-Out of Premade: All prepared foods or premade foods cost more to buy because you are paying for convenience. To easily save some money on your grocery bill, make as much as you can from base ingredients, which are often much cheaper.
  • Use Discount Codes: When shopping for anything, not just food, use discount codes for items. Also, make sure you utilize any grocery store sales you can access by being a store card member.

Reduce Spending Through Negotiation

Some bills are simply non-negotiable. You have to have power, you must have water, etc. However, there are some expenses that you can cut out, especially during a time of inflation. Expenses like cable or magazine subscriptions can be cut out in order to reduce outgoing expenses. In addition, call and negotiate with your current internet, home insurance, car insurance, and phone companies. If there are better prices available, consider changing to another company. Even switching to a more affordable option or plan within the same company can help you reduce what you pay out monthly.

Lower Your Monthly Bills!

Do you have a cell phone? Internet? What about cable or satellite TV? Just like most of us, you’re probably paying an arm and a leg for those services. Our team of savings experts will call your service providers and get you lower rates on your bills.

Increase Your Income

Finally, to budget successfully through inflation, if possible, increase your income. If you can work it out schedule-wise, making money outside of your current job to boost your income can help you offset the impact inflation is having on your budget. You can rent out a room with Airbnb, your pool with Swimply, or even your car with Turo or Getaround, which allows you to make income simply by letting others use your stuff. There are also jobs like Instacart, DoorDash, and others that you can try to increase your income. Be aware that this income is often independent contract work, meaning you will have to pay taxes out of what you earn.

Keep the steps outlined above in mind as you navigate increased inflation while trying to stay in charge of your budget.


Contact Century to Learn About Debt Settlement

If debt settlement sounds like it might be the right debt reduction strategy for you, contact Century Support Services. Century has helped hundreds of thousands of people settle debts that they otherwise couldn’t pay, and has saved clients a lot of time, aggravation and money in the process. To date, Century has settled more than $1.3 billion in debt and maintains a 94% satisfaction rating.

To get started, you’ll receive our free assessment and our Certified Debt Specialists will create a personalized program plan for you.

To learn more about the debt settlement process or if you have any general questions relating to how long does debt settlement take or how long will it take to recover from debt settlement, we’re happy to answer any questions.
Contact us today!

 

As the end of summer approaches, you might wonder if your opportunity to get away has passed you by. Rest assured that even while you are attempting to get your financial life back on sound footing, if you are purposeful with your planning, you can still enjoy traveling and vacations. This is especially true if you utilize these tools to find end-of-summer travel deals:

Kayak

This platform allows you to access hundreds of travel sites in seconds, finding the best prices for rental cars, hotels, flights, and more. Kayak is an ideal tool to utilize to get out there and enjoy the last vestiges of summer. Kayak Explore is a feature within that platform where you can enter a certain time you want to travel and even exact travel dates to further quantify your search results.

Secret Flying

When you have figured out where you want to go for your end-of-summer trip, your next step is getting there. Thankfully, by using Secret Flying, via their search tool, you can find great deals of last-minute flight deals. All you have to do is enter your departure location, your destination, and the time you want to fly, and you will get a grouping of options. You can even set up alerts for this tool that will give you a heads-up that rates are low and are up for grabs.

Trip.com

This website is ideally used to book a hotel room for your trip. You can use the platform to find good deals on last-minute room rentals. If you combine Trip.com with the last-minute flight finder, you will be able to plan a great last-minute trip easily.

HotelTonight

Another favorite for grabbing up last-minute hotel rooms is HotelTonight. This tool has been used to garner discounts of up to 50% off the listed price. It’s helpful to use the feature on the site that allows you to book even a bit further than same-day accommodations, in case you don’t want to literally plan a same-day trip.

Last Minute Travel

Aptly named, Last Minute Travel is a site solely dedicated to last-minute travel deals. There you can find deals on cruises, hotels, car rentals, and even fun activities. The hotel deals alone are worth a look. There is even a paid club option, the Last Minute Travel Club, on this site that allows club members to earn even deeper discounts. The membership for this is $50 yearly.

FunJet Vacations

This website allows you to book both your hotel and flight together at the same time. At FunJet Vacations, you enter where you want to go, and then they share the best hotel and flight deals that are available. The sales that are highlighted are particularly helpful if you are somewhat open in terms of your destination or time of travel.

Most Affordable Late Summer Destinations

While the sites listed above will help you get the best deal on a hotel and flight for a variety of destinations, the following are some destination ideas to keep in mind that are particularly affordable in late summer:

  • Bar Harbor, Maine: Described as a postcard come to life, this town is surrounded by the Acadia National Park and Frenchman Bay. There are many options for outdoor enthusiasts along with water sports options.
  • Niagara Falls: A trip to Niagara Falls is especially affordable in the summer. Add to this the fact that the mist from the falls is pleasant on 80-degree days, and it’s apparent why it’s a great late summer destination.
  • Surfside Beach, SC: This beach, known as “The Family Beach” features activities, like beach hula and fire shows, many of which are free. The area is well maintained and is a clean, safe summer getaway.

Keep the information listed above in mind when planning your end-of-summer vacation as it will help you save the most money possible on your adventure.


Contact Century to Learn About Debt Settlement

If debt settlement sounds like it might be the right debt reduction strategy for you, contact Century Support Services. Century has helped hundreds of thousands of people settle debts that they otherwise couldn’t pay, and has saved clients a lot of time, aggravation and money in the process. To date, Century has settled more than $1.3 billion in debt and maintains a 94% satisfaction rating.

To get started, you’ll receive our free assessment and our Certified Debt Specialists will create a personalized program plan for you.

To learn more about the debt settlement process or if you have any general questions relating to how long does debt settlement take or how long will it take to recover from debt settlement, we’re happy to answer any questions.
Contact us today!

 

As mid-summer nears, many students and parents are involved in an annual pilgrimage – busily preparing for the upcoming school year. However, with extensive inflation eating away at everyone’s budget and buying power, saving a few has become more appealing than ever.

Summer is the time most states offer consumers a holiday from the payment of sales tax. Every year, more than a dozen states designate sales tax holidays (also known as tax-free weekends) to help families and savvy shoppers better afford their student’s school supplies, etc.

During these tax holidays, states and often local governments suspend (or reduce) mandatory sales tax for specific categories related to back-to-school items.

What is Included in the Tax-Free Weekend?

The objective of a state-sponsored tax-free holiday is to help families financially prepare for the next school year – often, a time of year that can be quite expensive.

Each state’s requirements vary, but most states have a list that includes basic school supplies a student would need to start the year off on the right foot. This includes clothing, footwear, and other academic necessities, like –

  • Notebooks, pencils, rulers, etc.
  • Computers and software.
  • Athletic and safety gear.
  • Backpacks and book bags.
  • Calculators, to name a few.

Is There a Limit on the Tax-Free Weekend?

Most states have a per-item dollar limit or cap on what qualifies for a tax-free purchase. Although, consumers are free to shop in as many stores to buy what they need.

What does this mean for shoppers buying retail in a state that offers a tax-free day, week, or weekend?

They will not pay sales tax during this predetermined period if the purchase is valid and falls within acceptable categories. Plus, there is no fuss with coupons or rebate paperwork because the tax is waived at the point of sale or checkout.

While five states have no sales tax (Alaska, Delaware, Oregon, New Hampshire, and Montana), 45 others charge sales tax for everyday consumer purchases.

So, to take advantage of sales tax holidays near you, the first step is to ask around or jump online to find out if (and when) your state has a planned tax-free day, week, or weekend this summer. The Federation of Tax Administrators notes that in 2022, 17 states are offering tax-free holidays (for clothing, footwear, school supplies, and other relevant merchandise).

Do National Retailers Participate in Tax-Free Weekends?

Yes, they are required to participate in those states with tax holidays if they are licensed to do business there. So, you will pay no sales tax if you shop during the state’s designated tax holiday at Walmart, Target, or other retailers.

Does a Tax-Free Weekend Apply to Online Shopping?

Yes. A tax holiday applies to the internet as well as purchases made by phone or email – if transacted during the defined sales tax holiday. Online merchants should honor a legitimate sales tax holiday for purchases within the state’s jurisdiction.

Restrictions and rules vary by state, so it is essential to research the rules and the timing of your state’s upcoming sales tax holiday for 2022.

Shopping While Traveling?

Global Blue offers a unique way to shop tax-free when traveling internationally. Simply download their app and shop ] one of the participating retailers.

The Bottom-Line

Consumers can save money during a tax holiday by avoiding sales tax, particularly in those states with higher-than-average state taxes. However, be advised to stay within budget, or your extra spending will offset the tax savings.


Contact Century to Learn About Debt Settlement

If debt settlement sounds like it might be the right debt reduction strategy for you, contact Century Support Services. Century has helped hundreds of thousands of people settle debts that they otherwise couldn’t pay, and has saved clients a lot of time, aggravation and money in the process. To date, Century has settled more than $1.3 billion in debt and maintains a 94% satisfaction rating.

To get started, you’ll receive our free assessment and our Certified Debt Specialists will create a personalized program plan for you.

To learn more about the debt settlement process or if you have any general questions relating to how long does debt settlement take or how long will it take to recover from debt settlement, we’re happy to answer any questions.
Contact us today!

 

Debra was always a person who looked out for her family and friends. After her close friend lost her job, In an effort to help out, Debra took on a good amount of her friend’s debt. Then Debra was forced to take an income reduction and relocate half way across the country due to her own job changes.

She and her husband simply could not pay the debts they owed in a reasonable amount of time. With moving expenses and the burden of her friend’s debt, they had no choice to seek out professional help. That’s when they found Century Support Services.

With over $45,000 in debt, the Century representative explained Debra’s options and the details of the Century program. Debra was ashamed at first that she got herself into a financial hardship. The customer service was excellent, they’re also incredibly nice. I felt bad about being in an uncomfortable financial situation and they assured me that I have the ability to change my destiny” Debra exclaims. Nearly 23 months after enrolling in Century’s debt settlement program, Debra and her husband have resolved almost $45,000 in debt and are in the final stages of her last settlement!

Century also recruits the services of Century Legal Group to help with creditors that have more mandated policies in place. If a Century client has a settlement opportunity with one of these creditors, we obtain your authorization and enlist the Century Legal Group team to negotiate the account with the creditor. The best part is, there is no cost to you!

“They [Century] are extremely professional and thorough regarding all my needs and questions regarding my settlements. I have become overwhelmed with creditors, and rising costs over the past couple years”, Debra stated “And I am so relieved that they are providing me a solution for rectifying my debts and giving me hope to come out of my situation where I had none!”

Congratulations on your program success, Debra!

We thank you for trusting us to be a part of your journey toward better financial health and celebrate your diligence in staying with the program to make such great progress!

*We protect the privacy of our clients by changing their names and omitting any identifying details.

 


Contact Century to Learn About Debt Settlement

If debt settlement sounds like it might be the right debt reduction strategy for you, contact Century Support Services. Century has helped hundreds of thousands of people settle debts that they otherwise couldn’t pay, and has saved clients a lot of time, aggravation and money in the process. To date, Century has settled more than $1.3 billion in debt and maintains a 94% satisfaction rating.

To get started, you’ll receive our free assessment and our Certified Debt Specialists will create a personalized program plan for you.

To learn more about the debt settlement process or if you have any general questions relating to how long does debt settlement take or how long will it take to recover from debt settlement, we’re happy to answer any questions.
Contact us today!

 

It’s easy to get caught up in the craziness of everyday life, so summer is a great time to pause and reflect on what you’ve accomplished so far. We all have financial goals and aspirations, but the last few years during the pandemic have been rough ones. Nevertheless, the end of June marked the year’s halfway point.

This makes the start of the second half of the calendar year the perfect time to review your budgeting plan and make certain you’re headed where you can and want to go. Here are some steps you can take to stay or get back on track.

Review Your Budget

The first step is to review your current budget. Do you know precisely how much you are earning and spending right now? If not, it’s time to find out. Even if you made a comprehensive budget a few months ago, you may have found your income has changed since then. If expenses are exceeding your income, then it’s time to take a careful look at discretionary spending to figure out where to cut back. Perhaps you’re doing a bit better with your budget this year than expected. In that case, it’s important to determine if any extra money is serving your financial goals. It could be a good time to reevaluate how to best save or pay off your debts more quickly.

Review Your Goals and Cash Flow

Chances are your goals haven’t changed much, but now is a good time to review and make sure you are still on a good path to obtain those goals. It’s important to spend time reflecting on whether your goals are still in alignment and make some course corrections if needed.

After you’ve updated your budget, think about the rest of the year: beyond your regular budget, are there any upcoming expenses that you need to cover? Do you have cash set aside for those expenses, or do you know where the money will come from? This is especially important for retirees, who likely have expenses that are greater than their regular income, but it applies to working folks, as well.

Be Mindful of Debt

Though these are difficult times, with inflation and the rise in the cost of groceries, gas, etc. It’s critical to not fall behind on programs set up to get you out of debt. Paying off unsecured debt is an important priority. If your financial picture has changed, it’s important that you take steps to ensure that you are able to meet commitments and stay the course with your goals. If you do find yourself with extra money at this time, it may be worth paying extra into your debt relief program. You may also have secured debt, such as a home mortgage or car loan. These require regular payments, but there is no need to attempt to pay it off earlier, especially if you are working on your unsecured debt.

Unanticipated Expenses

Once you’ve made sure your current expenses are properly budgeted for, a great place to put extra money is into a savings account. This allows you to be prepared for sudden hardships, which are a part of life and have certainly been a big part of 2020. Putting a little bit away today, can make a big difference in dealing with the unexpected expenses of tomorrow.

Take advantage of Tax-Saving Opportunities

When you plan ahead with your money, you can take advantage of many tax-saving opportunities, including:

  • Retirement Accounts: The maximum contributions that you can make to a tax-saving retirement account goes up regularly. Are you up to date and contributing the maximum to your accounts? If you are not maxing out your retirement contributions, can you change your budget to allocate more money to this tax-saving plan?
  • Health Savings Account (HSA): For those with high-deductible insurance, contributing to an HSA can be a great way to save money on medical expenses.

Contact Century to Learn About Debt Settlement

If debt settlement sounds like it might be the right debt reduction strategy for you, contact Century Support Services. Century has helped hundreds of thousands of people settle debts that they otherwise couldn’t pay, and has saved clients a lot of time, aggravation and money in the process. To date, Century has settled more than $1.3 billion in debt and maintains a 94% satisfaction rating.

To get started, you’ll receive our free assessment and our Certified Debt Specialists will create a personalized program plan for you.

To learn more about the debt settlement process or if you have any general questions relating to how long does debt settlement take or how long will it take to recover from debt settlement, we’re happy to answer any questions.
Contact us today!

 

Want to slash your grocery store tab? Saving money on groceries is easier than collecting binders of coupons and buying 455 rolls of toilet paper.

We’ve compiled a list of simple (and some unexpected) tips to help you maximize your grocery budget.

1. Check Unit Prices

Sometimes it’s tempting to think buying in bulk is better, but that’s not always the case. That modest two pack of paper towels might actually be more affordable than the insanely large case of 16.

To calculate the unit price, divide an item’s price by its quantity. Consider how much you’ll actually be saving (if anything — and definitely not shelf space) by buying the bulk item.

2. Meal Prep to Make a Grocery Shopping List

We know, we know. This seems soooo obvious, but meal planning for the week and making a grocery list can help you stay on task, not waste food and avoid frivolous purchases — like cheese wedges.

3. Don’t Shop at Eye Level

Shelves at eye level are prime real estate. You’ll often find more expensive items there — or items that attract kids.

Or think about this: Between 1975 and 2000, the size of shopping carts tripled. A bigger cart doesn’t mean you have to fill it all the way up.

Once you recognize these mind games, you can more easily avoid them.

4. Shop Seasonally

Stay in your lane — or season.

Buying organic strawberries out of season, for example, can cost you a ton of money. Instead, shop and plan your meals seasonally. If you need out-of-season produce, buy it frozen.

Or consider shopping at a farmers market. During the summer months, there are many farmers markets that set up selling freshly grown produce to buy locally, instead of buying at the grocery store.

5. Ask for a Rain Check

You know when there’s a BOGO for Nutella — but then you get to the store and it’s gone? Someone else got greedy.

Don’t be afraid to ask your grocer for a rain check so you can still snag the sale when the store restocks.

6. Store Your Food Properly

You buy a container of spinach or bundle of avocados, but before you’re able to devour all the green goodness, it goes bad.

Avoid wasting money at grocery stores by storing your food properly, so it lasts longer.

7. Don’t Shop Hungry

The golden rule of grocery shopping: Thou shall not step into an aisle the least bit hungry.

Seriously. You’ll start grabbing anything and everything that looks good. Then, because you’re planning for an immediate meal, you’ll have a ton of fresh, ready-to-eat impulse purchases that’ll linger in your fridge and go bad before you have time to devour them all.

8. Shop Your Pantry First

Before your next grocery run, take stock of what’s already in your pantry, fridge and freezer. What can you make with those items? Chances are you have a box of noodles or a carton of eggs. Use those already-purchased staples to build out your weekly meals.

9. Don’t Buy Pre-Cut Produce

It turns out it’s not just the higher price of already prepped produce that makes it a questionable choice, although that alone is definitely reason enough to skip it. There are plenty of other good reasons why those pre-packaged items are best kept out of your cart and left on the grocery store shelf. From nutrient loss to anti-browning dips and more, it’s best just to stick with the ‘real’ thing.

10. Compare Stores

Ah, the store loyalists.

It’s easy to lean into one grocery store. You grow close with its aisles, its products, its cashiers… But you can save a bundle of money by jumping around. Use a grocery comparison chart to determine the best grocery stores to buy your go-to items.

For example, you could save a ton of money on paper products at the dollar store. Then, hit up your favorite grocer for your fresh fruits and veggies.

Or Have Your Groceries Delivered
Sure, you’ll have to pay for a grocery delivery service if someone brings your groceries to you, but opting to get your groceries dropped off at your door can actually save you a ton of time and money because you’ll be forced to plan out your meals.

Plus, there’s no veering off into the snack aisle.


Contact Century to Learn About Debt Settlement

If debt settlement sounds like it might be the right debt reduction strategy for you, contact Century Support Services. Century has helped hundreds of thousands of people settle debts that they otherwise couldn’t pay, and has saved clients a lot of time, aggravation and money in the process. To date, Century has settled more than $1.3 billion in debt and maintains a 94% satisfaction rating.

To get started, you’ll receive our free assessment and our Certified Debt Specialists will create a personalized program plan for you.

To learn more about the debt settlement process or if you have any general questions relating to how long does debt settlement take or how long will it take to recover from debt settlement, we’re happy to answer any questions.
Contact us today!

 

Are you ready to declare your financial independence this fourth of July? For many people, they are simply getting by. They are living paycheck to paycheck, barely making their debt payments, and don’t have a retirement plan or emergency fund. The good news is that you can declare your financial independence, save for unforeseen expenses, and prepare for your retirement with some help from these resources below.

1. Life Goals

Jot down how much money (assets and income) you need to pay for the lifestyle you want. Include the year when you want to achieve your goals and whether or for how long you will need to pay for those goals. The more specific your objectives, the more likely you are to make them a reality. Then, count backward to your present age and establish financial mileposts at regular intervals. These might include certain dollar amounts saved or assets acquired.

2. Budget Planning

Any good financial plan involves creating a budget. Take a look at all your household bills and expenses, including your subscription services. We recommend creating a spreadsheet of all your current bills. Then, in a separate column list all your income sources. Next cut unneeded or frivolous expenses.

Next, determine if you are earning more than you spend? If you’re not earning more than you spend each month, it may be a good idea to find some additional income sources, like gig work, a part-time side job, or a better-paying job. After all, you can’t save if you’re spending every dime you earn.

3. Pay your Debts

Debt can be a necessary part of life. You need loans for homes and cars, and credit cards can help bridge the gap for sudden expenses prior to having your emergency fund. However, at some point, it’s time to get rid of debt. Take a long look at all your debts. You can even add a column for debts on your spreadsheet. How much do you owe? Determine the highest and lowest balances and the highest and lowest interest rates. Some people like to start by paying off their smallest loans, which can result in a quick feeling of accomplishment, or the highest interest rate cards, which can save money in the long term.

Another option is to look at debt-relief options, like debt settlement. If you’re completely overwhelmed with your debts and making your minimum monthly payments is becoming impossible, Century can help. Our Debt Specialists offer a free debt evaluation and customization of debt relief program that fits your situation. The goal of the program is to support you in your journey toward better financial health.

4. Save

Pay yourself first. That is a standard recommendation from financial experts. If your employer offers a 401K retirement plan, make full usage of any matching contribution benefit. It is likewise an excellent idea to have an automated deposit from your employer into an emergency fund (or an automated transfer from your checking) that can be tapped for unanticipated expenditures. Additionally, consider an automated contribution to a brokerage for an Individual Retirement Account.

Regardless, keep in mind that the suggested quantity to save is widely debated, and the suitability of such a fund is sometimes even in question given certain circumstances.

Taking good care of your home and your possessions makes everything from automobiles and lawnmowers to shoes and clothing last longer. Imagine if you did not have to buy clothing and shoes as often as you do. You could hold on to your car longer, spending less in the process. Maintenance is the key to saving money.

5. Bargain

Many Americans are reluctant to negotiate for purchases and services, believing it makes them appear cheap. Many from other countries would recommend Americans conquer this cultural handicap. You might save thousands of dollars each year. Smaller merchants, in particular, tend to be open to negotiation. Purchasing in bulk or with repeated transactions can open the door to good discounts.

Your likelihood of achieving financial freedom increase dramatically if you can save money, control your credit and minimize your debt. You will be better able to provide for your family and yourself, not to mention the awesome feeling of being debt-free.

Consider sharing what you’ve learned so that others can take steps to enjoy financial independence. You can also start helping your younger relatives (i.e. nieces, nephews, and grandchildren), by adding to a 529 college savings account and helping pay for extracurricular activities, to support them in broadening their knowledge and start out their adult lives with as little debt as possible.


Contact Century to Learn About Debt Settlement

If debt settlement sounds like it might be the right debt reduction strategy for you, contact Century Support Services. Century has helped hundreds of thousands of people settle debts that they otherwise couldn’t pay, and has saved clients a lot of time, aggravation and money in the process. To date, Century has settled more than $1.3 billion in debt and maintains a 94% satisfaction rating.

To get started, you’ll receive our free assessment and our Certified Debt Specialists will create a personalized program plan for you.

To learn more about the debt settlement process or if you have any general questions relating to how long does debt settlement take or how long will it take to recover from debt settlement, we’re happy to answer any questions.
Contact us today!