savings

Savings represent strategies and resources that help you collect money for long-term planning or emergency spending. This helps ensure that you do not overextend yourself and need to max out your credit cards or pursue other forms of credit.

Get Out of a Debt Cycle in These 5 Steps

For many, debt isn’t just an obstacle. It’s a lifestyle. Once you fall into debt, it can be hard to pull yourself back out of it. Debt leads to borrowing, which leads to interest and more debt. And before you know it, you’re trapped in a vicious debt cycle. 

Fortunately there is a way out. Follow the five steps below to get out of your cycle of debt and achieve financial freedom. 
How to Escape a Debt Cycle
Step 1: Save up an emergency fund.
Your first thought is probably to throw every spare dollar at your debt. But one of the things that keeps people locked into a debt cycle is surprise expenses such as a car repair or medical bill. Before fully tackling your debt, build up a small emergency fund. That way your debt payback plan can remain uninterrupted by minor emergencies. 
Step 2: Consolidate debt and transfer it to a low (or no) interest rate.
There are a number of credit cards that offer low or even no interest rates for a select period of time if you transfer your debt to them. Doing this can free you up from interest payments that keep you trapped in a debt cycle. If possible, consolidate all of your debts into one loan or credit card. 
Step 3: Pay more than the minimum. 
Pay more than just the minimum on your balance each month. You’ll pay less in interest and will climb out of your debt cycle faster. 
Step 4: Live on a budget.
A key to breaking the debt cycle is maintaining a pattern of predictable spending. Create a budget so you know how much you’ll be allocating each month to food, bills, [...]

By |November 30th, 2019|Tips and Hints|Comments Off on Get Out of a Debt Cycle in These 5 Steps|

How to Budget and Save Money in Charlotte, NC

With so much to do around Charlotte, North Carolina — from restaurants to shopping centers and more — it can be easy to spend all the money in your pocket. As tempting as that may be, it’s probably not in your best interest. To keep yourself from overspending, check out these helpful money-saving tips.
How to Save Money in Charlotte, NC
Collect a rainy day fund
It’s the oldest trick in the book for a reason. Place a jar on your bedroom dresser or kitchen countertop, and fill it with all the loose change you get when you pay for groceries and make other transactions in cash. Or, make a habit of placing a dollar or two in the jar every time you get home from work. When the jar fills, bring it to your local bank and deposit your collection.

Once the coin machine calculates a sum in 10s, 20s, or even 50s, you can save it or spend it on something you’ve always wanted to do in Charlotte — like go to a football game at Bank of America Stadium or visit Carowinds Amusement Park.
Lookout for free events
After you’ve taken care of the groceries, rent, and monthly bills, save your extra cash and opt for a number of free events and activities around Charlotte. If physical fitness is your jam, stop by the South Tryon Athletic Center Crossfit (STAX) every Tuesday and Thursday from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. for a free boot camp.

Visit the UNC Botanical Gardens on a warm afternoon, and stroll through three gardens featuring seasonal flowers, plants, shrubs, and more. The Reedy Creek Nature Center and Preserve is another free spot where you can walk along nature [...]

By |October 12th, 2018|Tips and Hints|Comments Off on How to Budget and Save Money in Charlotte, NC|

Affordable Souvenirs to Bring Home From Your Vacation

Spring is finally here, which means a chance to get away and travel. Last year we wrote a blog on how to stretch your vacation dollar, but what about souvenirs? Everyone wants to bring back something to help them remember their trip, but all the gifts you buy for yourself and your family can add up.

We’ve included a few of our favorite cost-effective souvenir ideas for your next trip from Clover, South Carolina.
Affordable Souvenirs You Can Bring Back From Your Vacation from Clover
One way you can save is by vacationing close to home. All of these great destinations are less than six hours from Clover, South Carolina:

Atlanta, GA
Myrtle Beach, SC
Outer Banks, NC
Jacksonville, FL
Richmond, VC

Get Something Practical
If you’re going to throw down money on a souvenir, why not get something you’ll actually use?

Clothes are probably the best example of a practical souvenir, but avoid the overpriced, low-quality tourist store t-shirts that line the bottom of most dressers. Opt for an identifiable shirt, swimsuit, pair of sandals, or sunglasses that can become a part of your regular wardrobe. You’ll be reminded of your trip every time you wear it.
Pictures
You probably already have a way to obtain this souvenir in your pocket right now. Just make sure to snap a quick shot of every place you stop, and by the end of the trip, you’ll have dozens of memories. You can print these and put them on display or just upload them to social media to share with those you care about.
A Journal
Keep a journal of your activities while you’re out on vacation. This can include short blurbs, sketches, [...]

By |March 21st, 2018|Tips and Hints|Comments Off on Affordable Souvenirs to Bring Home From Your Vacation|

Simple New Year’s Resolutions to Help You Save Money

New Year’s resolutions are great opportunities to get a fresh start and improve your life. If you’re anything like most Americans, finding ways to save more money is near the top of your list. Fortunately, you can make great headway by adopting just a few minor lifestyle changes. Here are some helpful money-saving resolutions.

Like all resolutions, some setbacks are to be expected. If you’re caught off-guard by sudden expenses along the way, you can make ends meet with a convenient title loan from Cash Fast Loan Center in Clover, South Carolina.
New Year’s Resolutions to Help Yourself Save Money in Clover, SC
Cut Out the Small Expenses
Maybe you pick up a cup of coffee every morning or go out for lunch several times a week. These small expenditures can add up to a massive portion of your budget. Limiting these convenience purchases or cutting them entirely can save you hundreds in a year.
Prep Food Ahead of Time
Buying and prepping your lunches in bulk can save you both time and money. Just make several large servings of the same meal Sunday night and pack them up in plastic containers to reheat and eat throughout the week. This way you aren’t wasting money on ingredients for individual meals every day.

Here are just a few delicious and easy prep-ahead meals.
Eat Less Meat
Another way to save on food is to eat less meat. Meats are typically the most expensive part of any meal, and it can be substituted for high-protein vegetables like broccoli, mushrooms, legumes, and tofu. Avoiding meat can also help you improve your health. Try incorporating a “Meatless Monday” into your weekly schedule to get started.
Set Aside Extra Money
If [...]

By |January 10th, 2018|General|Comments Off on Simple New Year’s Resolutions to Help You Save Money|

How to Save Money on Your Holiday Party This Year

Your yearly holiday party is a great time to get together with family and friends, but it can put a major dent in your budget, especially if you’re already experiencing financial issues. A tight budget shouldn’t mean you don’t celebrate. Here are some ways to throw a festive holiday bash for less.
How to Host a Holiday Party on a Budget
Postpone the Holiday Gift Exchange
It may be more difficult to capture the holiday mood in early January, but if you can put off your gift buying, you’ll be able to save big. Stores will be lowering prices and offering sales to move the extra inventory and items they weren’t able to sell over the holiday shopping season. Take advantage of these discounts and have your gift exchange later.
Have a Wrapping Party
The presents aren’t the only thing that can add up this season. Wrapping paper, tags, ribbons, and bows aren’t cheap. However, if you get together with some friends, you can spread out the cost of these supplies. Wrapping parties are also an affordable way to spend more time with loved ones.
Make it a Potluck
The meal is usually one of the most significant expenses of any party. You can decrease the food budget by asking guests to bring their own dishes. If you still want some control over the menu, assign the foods that people make. It’s also fun to let them choose whatever dish best represents them. Either way, you’ll get a great variety without the costs.
Get Creative with the Decor
Getting your home ready for the season shouldn’t have to mean spending money on expensive lights and decorations. You can create a festive feel for less [...]

By |December 12th, 2017|Loans|Comments Off on How to Save Money on Your Holiday Party This Year|

Payday Loans and Other Tips to Help You Stretch Your Budget

It can be difficult finding the money for all your expenses in tight financial times, but if you find yourself short at the end of most months, you may want to reconsider the way you budget. Here are a few tips you can use to stretch your monthly budget further.

If surprise expenses have affected your ability to pay for budget necessities, you may also be able to get some extra help with a payday loan from Cash Fast Loan Center in Gastonia, North Carolina.
Payday Loans and Other Ways to Make Your Budget Go Farther
Prioritize Expenses
At the start of each month, it is important to sit down and settle on financial priorities. Before you spend a penny, decide which of your monthly expenses are the most important. This list should have housing, utilities, and food at the top. These expenses should ideally fall just under 50% of your income. When these costs are taken care of, spend about 20% of your income on debt. Whatever money is leftover can be spent on entertainment and other discretionary expenses.
Set Aside Money for Necessities
Once you budget out your high-priority payments, pay them immediately. If you can’t pay early, set the cash aside in an envelope. This puts this money out of play while you spend on wants through the month.
Make Allowances
Split the money you have leftover further. Set aside as much as you’re comfortable with to go into a savings account. The rest can go towards whatever you want to spend it on. If you’re can’t manage to save any money, you may need to examine your buying habits to see if there are places you can spend less.
Track [...]

By |October 27th, 2017|Payday loans|Comments Off on Payday Loans and Other Tips to Help You Stretch Your Budget|

How to Quickly Pay Off Your Car Title Loan

If an unexpected expense is keeping you from making regular monthly payments, you may be able to get some relief from a car title loan. Title loans provide an emergency influx of cash to help keep you afloat in difficult times.

Since it is a loan, you’ll need to pay the money back eventually. Here are some tips that make paying back your title loan a little easier.
How to Pay off a Car Title Loan
What is a Title Loan?
A title loan is a small emergency loan you can apply to by allowing the lender put a lien on your car’s title as collateral. The amount of money you can take out is dependant on the value of the vehicle and your ability to pay back the loan.  Once the loan is paid off the lien is removed, returning full ownership of the title to the borrower.

Title loans can get you a short-term influx of cash, but like any other loan, it comes with interest payments. By staying on top of your loan payments, you can pay off your title loan without incurring any additional interest.
Find a Payment Plan That Works for You
During the loan application process, you’ll have a chance to work out a payment plan. Consider how much you’ll be able to afford each month when you work out your monthly payments. If you can afford to make larger installments, you’ll pay off the loan sooner with less interest.

You can also opt for smaller monthly payments, keeping in mind that you’ll pay more in interest this way.
Build Your Budget Around Paying Off the Loan
When you’re making your monthly budget, make sure that your loan [...]

By |October 16th, 2017|Title Loans|Comments Off on How to Quickly Pay Off Your Car Title Loan|

4 Exciting Free Local Events to Celebrate Independence Day

Independence Day is a time to celebrate, but barbecue supplies, fireworks, and drinks can add up in cost. Celebrating doesn’t have to be so expensive this 4th of July. Make your holiday more affordable by taking advantage of one of the many free celebrations around Charlotte, North Carolina, and York County, South Carolina.
Save this Independence Day with These Charlotte, NC, Area Events
The Carolinas are full of free July 4th celebrations that let you enjoy the holiday without needing to drain funds. Here are a few of our favorites.
Skyshow Charlotte
July 4th, 9:30 pm

Outside BB&T Ballpark

When it comes to 4th of July fireworks, the bigger, the better. So why settle for anything less than the biggest? Skyshow in Charlotte, North Carolina, bills itself as the largest fireworks display in the Southeast, and it is truly a sight to behold. Although the best seats are from BB&T Ballpark, you can get a stunning view of the spectacle from Romare Bearden Park or one of the nearby parking lots.
Harrisburg 4th of July Celebration
June 29- July 4th

Harrisburg Park

The town of Harrisburg in North Carolina always put together an impressive 4th of July Celebration, and 2017 is their 20th year. With three days of great activities, shows, and events, there is something for the whole family to enjoy.

Although there is a pageant on the 29th of June, and plenty to do on the 3rd of July, festivities kick into full steam on the 4th. After a 9 a.m. parade, visitors can enjoy a full evening of food, fun, live music, and fireworks.
Queen City Brass Band
July 3rd, 7:30

Mint Hill Town Hall

Take in some classic patriotic music this holiday with a free concert from [...]

By |July 1st, 2017|General|Comments Off on 4 Exciting Free Local Events to Celebrate Independence Day|
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    6 Fun and Affordable Summertime Activity Ideas for Your Kids

6 Fun and Affordable Summertime Activity Ideas for Your Kids

With summer here, your kids are probably getting restless from all the free time they have. Without school and homework to keep them busy, children need something to do.

Read on for ideas and activities that will keep the little ones entertained this summer without breaking the bank.
Cheap Summertime Activities for Kids
Free Museums
A lot of art, natural sciences, or history museums are free or offer discounts to children. For instance, the Mint Museum in Charlotte, North Carolina, is free Tuesday evenings and the Gaston County Museum in South Carolina is always free. Take advantage of these opportunities for a fun and educational summer activity. A lot of museums even offer hands-on activities for younger visitors.
Arts, Crafts, & Experiments
For the relatively small price of some art supplies, you can keep your kids occupied for hours. You can even use everyday household items like sponges, paper towel rolls, and pencils as craft supplies. Encourage them to get creative.

Is your daughter or son is more science-minded? Making slime, mixing household items, and other science projects can be great fun.  Here are some great crafts and experiments you can try at home.

Michaels hosts affordable art classes during summer months. These are a great way for your child to blow off steam while picking up a skill.
Explore Local Parks
Take advantage of the warm Carolina weather with a visit to a local state park. Hours can fly by simply exploring trails with your kids. You can also use the visit as a chance to teach them about the wilderness by identifying trees and other wildlife.
Bowling
Bowling alleys all over the country are participating in Kids Bowl Free, an event where registered member [...]

By |June 7th, 2017|Tips and Hints|Comments Off on 6 Fun and Affordable Summertime Activity Ideas for Your Kids|
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    Beat the Heat of Carolina Summer With These Tips from Cash Fast Loans

Beat the Heat of Carolina Summer With These Tips from Cash Fast Loans

In the Carolinas, summer heat can be hard to bear sometimes. It can be instinct to blast the air conditioning for a respite from the oppressive warmth. However, a well air-conditioned house comes with a high price tag.

If you’re tight on cash, you can save yourself some money this summer with these easy tips to help beat the summer heat.
Tips for Affordable Relief from Summer’s Heat in Carolina
Blinds
With the beautiful weather of a Carolina summer, leaving the blinds wide open is tempting. However, tons of heat comes in through the windows. Blocking out the sun’s rays cut the heat going through your house by as much as 45%. White blinds are the best for deflecting sunlight.
Cold Water on Wrists
You can quickly cool off most of your body by running cold water on certain specific points. These spots are close to major veins, letting cooled blood move throughout your body.

The easiest spots to reach are your wrists. Run them under cold water in the sink for several seconds when you get too hot.
Use Public Spaces
Public areas like libraries or coffee shops always have excellent air conditioning. If you’ve got some work to do, or are meeting someone, consider one of these locations.
Maximize Your A/C
Running a fan and an air conditioner at the same time can help cut the cost of cooling your home. With the fan blowing the cool air around, you can have the A/C at a much lower setting.
Cook Outside
Give your oven a break! The oven is a massive source of heat in any home. By cooking outdoors, you keep yourself from having to bring extra heat indoors by leaving [...]

By |May 12th, 2017|General|Comments Off on Beat the Heat of Carolina Summer With These Tips from Cash Fast Loans|