Personal Finance for Artists & Freelancers

Lesson 2 of 30

Your Snapshot: Where Are You Today?

 

Personal Finance for Artists & Freelancers

Lesson 2 of 30

Your Snapshot: Where Are You Today?

 

Lesson Info

Your Snapshot: Where Are You Today?

So this is part of where you are today, and this is where we're just going to really talk about taking advantage of the technological tools out there in this case, and I'm probably already like, six months behind what's going on, but this is where technology is your friend use it, use the resource is out there in terms of putting money on a daily life in your daily life. So here's, just a few things that I like and what I would suggest where really love to hear from the audience right now or just from you listening in is what are you using? Is there something here I don't know about? Like I said, I think I'm up on it, but, um, gosh, literally two days ago, someone said, oh, had you heard about this site? And I had it, so let me know if there's something that you use that you love or if there's something here that you don't like because this isn't for everybody, this is not a one size fits all kind of course at all, my favorite is meant, which we'll talk about it talk about tracking aps...

e, which I liked, too we'll talk about your bank's site and then just a tool to get you more organized, maybe you're in great shape with your money. And by the way, this was a great lesson for me as I worked with another client she's a wonderful author she's written cook bugs business book she's merged the two just a real creative type in terms of being creative about making more money and one of the things that she discovered when she and I worked together she said you know attraction in really good shape so I hope that's you listening in by the way that you go through this and you say I'm doing all right I'm doing more than all right I'm doing awesome maybe I just need to get more organized or it's like I'm healthy so I don't go to the doctor but maybe I should go to the doctor once or twice a year just to get a checkup so maybe that's you kudos but that could be just using the organized tool so let's start with men to mint has gotten so popular I think there's twelve million users it's owned by into it which is a large large company because invariably somebody always asks me well, is it safe? Is my information safe on the internet and I had a little bit I don't want to say that I'm a dinosaur but I'm not you know a young twenty techno person and so I say guess what that information's already on the internet it's already out there if they want it they're going to get it if you belong to a bank sort of like a small mom and pop bank in a very small, small city, you're probably in a large banking institution. Your information is on the internet. Use a credit card with a large company, so don't be scared of using the internet it's not to say that you shouldn't look for things and have some credit watches, but don't be scared of looking at your finances on the internet. So what is mint dot com it's, a free site? Most of the information I'm talking about, by the way, the next three days is free, except for maybe studying for this course, but everything else is free. So mint dot com what you have to do, spend maybe half a knauer inputting your credit cards, your debit cards if you want to tell them your loan information, so you do have to give them that information in terms of having access to it. Once you are logged on, it takes seconds to update, and what I love about it is the visual, and us artists and freelancer should love that, too. I love that you log on, so just spend that half hour, really, I spent I I've helped a lot of clients get on mint dot com, and it does take half an hour, if not more, but once that's it and you can get the updates on your mobile phone on your ipad, obviously on your computer. So what I love is that it tells you what you're spending has been over periods of time categories. The categories are not always correct, so sometimes you've to fix them so you can see what did I spend shopping, medical expenses home. I have a client. He set up a mint dot com accounts separate for his business. So he has a business credit card and a business bank account so he could see where his business expenses were going. And it was. I mean, he didn't have to hire a bookkeeper. He got really organized that way, and he was able to give that to his accountant when it came time to do taxes. So that's a great, easy, cheap tool. So he had to have a separate business credit card, a separate bank account. And so he set up a separate mint dot com account for that. So here's a great stories that I had a client who had saved a pot of money to start a business and was he's done very well with it, and so his goal was he really worked hard in corporate america, saved a lot of money and then for a year he gave himself to start this new business, but he was going to live off his savings and he had a family and he had a mortgage, so has monthly expenses were a little bit higher than some, but he said, you know, I've worked really hard to spend this money, I don't necessarily want to go through it, I'm going to give myself twelve months, so we've come up with a budget, I remember the exact numbers, but his budget was that he was going to spend about seven thousand dollars a month again, I could be wrong about that number, so min dot com was a great tool for when we did check ins he came in and I said you didn't spend seven thousand last month, you spent eight thousand? He said, no, I didn't I spent seven thousand and I said, these numbers don't lie there directly tied to your credit card, your debit card. So that was a great exercise for you to see where your money has gone, I will say, is an ongoing budgeting tool I'm not such a fan of it. But I think to really see where you are today and where your money went mint dot com could be great and they do have budgeting tools they work for some I have not found it to be as useful I'll give you suggestions for others but just maybe say let me see where my money went I had no idea I was spending so much on fill in the blank on eating out on groceries I have a client who was a target problem way loved are good but she's like I can't go into target and spend less than a hundred dollars which it's not in my budget because I see this nun and she's not going you know she goes for toilet paper and comes out with new outfits and craft goods and whatnot so this is just a great exercise its visual once your information's in there it takes seconds to update so maybe you just need been dot com this is using your bank I care which bank this is so this is just from a bank's website but there's some really great the larger bank it's such a cz wells fargo bank of america chase citigroup, citibank if you're with one of the larger banks which are all over the country they have great tracking aps I mean they're not as pretty is mint but the information is really, really helpful and again, this is a free tool you're probably already using the debit card if you have a credit card with them so they can have that information for you so I've had a few clients come in and just show me their bank tracking app or their bank tracking function so again maybe you already have this information so why reinvent the wheel? This is one of my favorite aps y n a b what do you think the stands for? You need a budget pretty clever so this is gosh this might not be free, but if it's not free it's about three dollars so it's it's pretty cheap so you can either link it to your credit card or your debit card or you could just input the information just manually and I say manually it's an app on your mobile phone it's iphone and android so while you're waiting in line at the coffee shop while you're I'm from the east coast from new york so I do a lot of stuff on when I'm on the subway or waiting for the subway. But if you're in a car, don't do it in a car so you two do when you get to work or get to where you're going or if you're at home but using a tracking app so this is really a tracking app and they have this's great at a lot of information on there, so why in a b this is another app and I like this happens actually much more simpler, but I just I found it visually just much more appe using to me so this is budget they've left out a vowel or two so it's a budget happen again? I can't remember if it's free or not, but if it isn't free it's three dollars so this is an app that you put in the information so you may be put in again the income we're not sure what the income is, but you can put in the expenses you can say, you know, two dollars the coffee has spent ten dollars on a taxi put that information so it's just a great tool to start talking where you are that was going to say one of the things that I don't like about men and a lot of these other verses that cash becomes a problem. And so do you think that this, for example, this app is probably better for that? Yes, absolutely go to the you get forty dollars out, you know, technically, because we are going to talk a lot about that earlier when we talk about because oh, cash is great because you don't get into dead it's easy, but maybe you should only go to the once a week and just you're taking forty dollars every three days, so you know what? When we do the budget we'll talk a lot about that but I agree with you mint does not track hash very well they have gotten better about it but it's not great but using a tracking app where you can just put in the dollar amount is great for that. So if that's an issue for you but we will talk about just controlling your cash absolutely I think also just is a kind of a forward tip is that if spending is a problem which it is for a lot of us let's go back to cash cash only no damn it, no credit just think about that think about how easy life was when you only had cash unless you truly got a credit card at sixteen but a lot of us started our spending think about when you started your spending habits it was cash only so think about how can I use cash to actually change my money habits? So these air tuapse these air very simple aps but I love them so what I did by the way, when I was trying to learn about all these money apse is I think I bought thirty of them on my phone just to try them cause I thought, how can I say which one I like unless I try them? I'd read reviews on tech websites and such and personal finance magazines in the wall street journal but, you know, I had a practice. What I preach, so and that's. And so I tried a lot of aps. I love these two. I keep going back to these two. Their names might change it's pennies and envelopes envelopes. Has anyone heard of the envelope system? Kind of like an old fashioned, very country type system is that, you know, you have your your money for the week. You put your rent money in the envelope. You put your grocery money in the envelope you put your I know when I really started talking about people their money, habits, envelope coming up and it's a very old fashioned sort of, you know, churchgoing, like just rural type philosophy. And I just love the idea of it love it, love it. So this is the electronic version of envelopes, so you would set I have got three fifty for groceries. I've got two hundred for eating out so you'd set the budgets beforehand, and then you'd have to track it again. Maybe this works for you. Maybe this doesn't on dh. Then this is just I loved this gas gauge. Love it. So you put here. I don't want to spend more than fifteen hundred dollars this month. And then I have to track the information, so as soon as I open up the app, I can see where's my gas gauge so just again as a visual person and I'm definitely a financial background but I realized the visual I think talking to artists and creative people and freelancers having visual with your money is great so I love this gas gauge it says, oh, I can't go out to dinner I can't go out to dinner I can buy that new dress I can't buy that new dress so my kids are getting shoes this month oh, they're not so I just kind of helps us with that but you do have to manually input the information that's the negative so again they're either free or just a few dollars and I think you can buy some of these aps for for free or get them for free but then they have bad so that's your call but that's that's a worthy investment three dollars if that's what they cost so this is a great app to diva doc this is just for getting organized, so maybe this is someone who you know wants it over there will is wants to know where their medical insurance wants know where their passport is once know where their car insurance with their mortgage title, so you actually scan the information and put it in this app great great app I love it love it so diva docks check it out funny name great named eve actually stands for like disruptive innovative vision ambitious so um anyway I love this app I have found that if you're some of the moves a lot a kind of mine told me that she used to she forgot her past short and she still had to go and get it but at least having the this honor the aft helped her kind of like it through security and I think she had a fedex to her something like that but so I can't say that would always happen but it could be a great tool so has have there any been calls anyone suggesting app said that they like are there are there we have right south photo says I have quick books but I never used because when I first logged on and ask me a ton of tax questions I wasn't able to answer so I put it back in the box and never used it again is going to be the sign no gosh men just so easy so quick books is actually an accounting software and I will say I'd used quicken quickbooks you do need a course to learn you need somebody to help you so you might have to have a bookkeeper that helps you I have a wonderful woman in new york who literally all she does is teach people quickbooks so quick books is not an easy program, so I can get it that it's hard mint is easy, so easy, and if you want to just do your taxes, you could do turbo tax, which is also easy actually promised you the tax question. Yeah, I think they have to make it easy because I, you know, I can speak from personal experience that you go and buy a thing in a box because it's in a box at the so you think that if it's in a box, you can just download on the computer and len it straightaway, right? And I think that tends to reflect what we're saying here is people that have bought programs like that, thinking that it will be a quick fix. So if if you want to do accounting, maybe you start with quicken because quicken is a lot easier, and then you could do fresh books for invoicing, which is what a lot of clients teo and I mean, I've got some coaches that I work with a dew fresh books, so I don't think you need to learn as much quickbooks you do need to learn it's a great, great program, fantastic program, right start photo is asking if there are any apse that you can put on multiple multiple devices. So her fiance can have it on his phone, and she can have it on her way to your information into absolutely so min dot com you can have on multiple devices and it's really meant is only as good as the information you put into it. So if you share credit card, you share debit cards, or if you have your own, put them all in there and end it all. How the information in one place so that's how I mentioned my client who used it for his business, so he essentially set up to mint dot com accounts to separate accounts, the two e mails and user I ds and loggins and such one was personal in one was business, but for this client, this sum, this caller who wants to do personal or who wants to share accounts with her fiance so little do one mint dot com account, but then put all their information into it. I love all of these great aps and all of these technologies that help us, but I don't know if this is a girl issue. I always have a problem with my password. I forget my passwords. I forget my log in, so here is an awesome service it's called past pack it's like it's, like triple encrypted, but I haven't been able to organize all my loggins all my passwords and even make notes inside of it so okay that's one that I love that's great great past paco help! Remember that there's actually one that I really love which is called one receipt one we don't know if you've heard of it all was this where you take pictures of the receipt? Yes, yes. That's a lady keep track of how much of your constantly buying things such a ce for your business, right? Right for personal freelancer, right, it's? One of the things that you don't have to keep dax right call, then I think lemon lemon is another sight that does that. So it actually lets you take pictures of the receipt, scans them, then puts in information great. Well and you can add it to you could say it's business or personal. Rachel great tool. Absolutely that's. Great. Okay, so let's, quickly give your homework. So we've gotten so many great apse, so get a tracking tool. Just turn your phone that's free, pay a little bit of money, download it now start using it. Have fun with it. Don't be worried. Is it right, there's? No right or wrong. So whether it's mint dot com, your bank tracking tool diva docks um cash, but also wine, maybe penny's envelopes, thes past pack one receipt lemon I mean there's tillman and these air you know there's also there's I think money one there's tasha I mean if you go into the idea his store we're going to the app store you'll see so many so try one and let me know if there's a great one that I have not talked about because look I've just learned about to that I'm going to put my presentation so over the break download a tracking tool start keeping track of where your money went on words going and just in terms of the password it's a great point nothing's perfect and we're actually going to talk more about the underlying about really just knowing where your money's going versus the passwords and I don't keep track of it online and relying on that laura rolling teo coming I think personal comments so laura comments I'm forty seven and single I don't have any savings I'm very nervous for my retirement and I've held back getting involved with relationships for fear of having to disclose my financial scenario that really resonates with may because you do hear that a lot and so to that you know if you suddenly decide look I'm going to get a grip on this I'm financially just out but we know it but I'm gonna change it because collier is showing me how we grabbed the tools that you have and those amazing enrollment materials you have how far back would you go with the information to build a scenario feeder work forwards from how far do you have to dig through receipts and things is a great, great question. So first of all, laura, thank you for sharing that you're where you are and that you've got this fear of not getting into relationships because that's that is huge to share that. So thank you, you don't have to go that far back. That's what I really love about my process with money is that you want to look at where your money went a year at the most. Obviously, if you get audited and there's lots of different examples, but on the whole, you don't need to look that far back, because my philosophy is you are where you are today and let's move forward, so if you have debt, you're gonna have to pay it off. But what I want laura to focus on, and for those of you that are feeling like that, don't be thinking about the mistakes you've made. So you know what? I'm going to start today by looking at where my money's going from now on creating having money habits, creating a savings plan, creating a spending plan, and if retirements closer than I think, then I've got to start saving for more for retirement. And we'll talk about that. I'm gonna have a lot of information on those of you that are watching that might be a little bit older and haven't saved enough for retirement. And then what? Don't worry, we're gonna help you with that. Is it possible to save enough for retirement? Is it possible to maybe completely retired at sixty five? If you haven't saved that much? Probably not, but can you save enough to work part time? Can you save enough to maybe move to a cheaper place? Absolutely it's more just and I see this because I've worked with a lot of forty and fifty year old people that come to my office and have had zero saved, and so we say, realistically, you probably can't not work, but what we can do is create a plan that says we could save enough that maybe you live on twenty five thousand a year, so you need to earn enough to supplement that or go live someplace really cheaply. Just knowing the numbers makes you feel better, I guarantee it got a couple of questions just over the four categories, so well, I guess while people are doing their homework over the break, this might be handy, I'm photograph wonders do you can't account as money owed? Yeah. Absolutely card yet sits alone and on the other on the flip side, if you are in the car, you gonna count that is yeah, on the whole cars depreciate pretty quickly, so it's not such an asset, unfortunately, but it can also not be a liability in the sense that once you paid off, you don't know it, so yeah, you can count it. I just wouldn't count it for as much as you think it does appreciate pretty quickly. Quick question from tracy who's asking it seems like you recommend mutual funds over ft index fund. We're going to talk a lot about that. Yeah, I don't want to get into that now, it's such a good question, we're going to talk about t f c exchange traded funds and index funds, so we're definitely cover that I do, you know, I don't know if I'm allowed to say this, but I'm gonna make them sexy. We're gonna make mutual funds, index funds sexy problem? Yeah, because I almost did it that way. We're going to talk a lot that's actually, my passion investments are my passion shin, so I don't sell them. I don't make any money off of them, but I love talking about, um, this story of films has came to know, and I'm pretty sure you've got this, but are we going to be discussing freelance attacks preparation? I would love to make sure I'm maximizing my potential deductions is a freelancer and also and reporting my income yes, we're totally gonna talk about taxes absolutely I will say you need a good c p a so definitely put that person in your back pocket I have a great ceiba, not a c p a none of us are get a good one but I will talk a lot about taxes absolutely it is I mean as a freelancer and you know, when you have a lot of things, a lot of things I also have a lot of offshore income coming in so it's super complex which just makes me bury my head further in the sand a safety I can also be really expensive freelance hasn't got us how approach that well, you start by asking around again I I work in new york city, which is one of the most expensive cities in the world have about three cpas I recommend that are completely affordable and two of the three I recommend on ly work with freelancers and business owners and he's affordable. So I think it's asking around finding somebody but you have tohave a good c p ay because if you don't, you'll get into trouble by not paying your taxes enough and more importantly, you might not be deducting enough most freelancers don't have to pay a lot of taxes because you can deduct a lot and write off a lot and a good c p I can help you do that, and you can help by saving money with your sepa by maybe getting your receipts together, doing some of your own bookkeeping like my cpu. Granted, I was actually in accounting major in college, and then I switched to finance, so I do know accounting really well, not a c p a the tax laws change every gosh, every month, practically, but I give my sepa my quicken she once a year, so I really link have to pay her once or twice a year to do my books, but what I like is like an email her all the time with questions actually, a c p a question I'm one of those people that has moved from one state to another and to another on dh. I'm still hanging on to my c p a from a different state than I live in now, what's here, get a c p a in the state where you're out, especially if you're taking paying state taxes. We'll talk about taxes, though that's a good subject, any questions directly related to the own this snapshot. Before we okay, twenty three says, should I count my home bills and business bills as my owes? If I'm counting my nine to five job and my creative jobs under earned? So this is that that's a great question. I would strongly suggest you start separating business and personal expenses. So while you might be paying for everything, we are going to talk about that. And when we talk about budget and such but you might wanna have to oh columns, you're oh, personal expenses, and maybe you have this for personal miss for business. It might be all combined, but no, like I know, for my business, it cost me about seven hundred dollars a month. You know, for my office space, for my internet, for this for that. So I know what I need to earn, but I know that my business nut is about seven hundred a month. Care whether that's the exact number. But while my personal knut is whatever thousands a month. So that's a great question. Hello, erica is asking, you know, if you have a good c p a or not your way. The same person for ten years what's the best way to compare you know we'll talk about that talk is that such a great question? So I mean really a good c p a is the I think one who helps you with deductions so we'll talk about that and paying your estimated taxes and so when we got through taxes, if you feel like, oh, I'm doing that I'm doing that you probably have a good sepa, but again, this is where talk to your community like, especially in new york, the freelancers union is such an amazing community and that people talk about I think once you start talking to other freelancers, don't be afraid to say, well, how do you do with your taxes? How do you know what kind of deductions do you pay? Is your tax bracket twenty percent? You know, saying this quickly because I will cover it is you'll realize I'm not doing that, okay, I should do that more, yeah, I was wondering that because, you know, often I think that sometimes you go to groups, but if you're a creative going tio sort of groups, the last thing people talk about his finance, you never have people talking about it, and people are very closed about how much they charge, which now I know you're going to cover that and that's gonna be a key but I mean, are there that sort of financial of you heard of creatives that get together instead of financial support groups yes yeah yeah yeah yeah I was in fact I was part of a wonderful one I think it's just more importantly is you're the ceo seo's talk like think of yourself that way so if there aren't talk next time you're at a networking event to say do you have a good sepa? How do you do with your taxes? I guarantee you people give me like I owned or they'll be like, oh, I'm so glad you mentioned that I'm looking for someone or or I have this great account that's a classic one we've got here is another classic arm from j just I'm a master student and only down a few hundred dollars worth of freelance work so far do I need to worry right now about pain texas for the u yes if you earn income, you pay taxes? Absolutely I think that's a classic trap that people fall in to you don't you just probably need to pay a lot, but you know I'm not I'm not the irs I don't work for them, I work for myself but it's just part of just having responsibility you earn money, pay taxes, you can deduct a lot right off alone but how about spices? So we've got a couple of questions here about how teo high value assets we've got net ingenuity and austin texas says if I jointly on property with my husband or half do I measure half those assets but you're going to and then and then j tous deductions on home office you're going to be talking directly about I'm going to be talking about deductions in home office I won't cover that now and again I think in terms of looking at your finances jointly or separately if you're doing the thirty second snapshot to both do one on your own and do one joint so run two of them I will say it don't make it too complicated just get to know these numbers okay so wait it'll be really interesting to hear how you are passing on you know you talk about how you have extended family have sisters and step moms and a lot of women around too how did how you passing on your financial now to your kids and I've two daughters to yeah two nieces I mean and my sister's having a second girl yeah there's there's a lot of my poor husband guru how you how you making that simple so that you know I have tonight just like how you communicate and talking about it I'm talking about my money I am up front of the kimono is open I'm talking about my money I think that's the most important thing is that well, maybe you're fearful about sharing the dollar amount you earned maybe you're fearful of sharing the shame that you've got credit card debt but we're talking about our money so when you know if we lose a job we're up front about it if we say we're prioritising maybe not saving as much for kids colleges were towards retirement, we're talking about it, we're talking about that I'm prioritizing my expenses that I'm spending prioritizing the mortgage that I'm refinancing we're talking about our money again, it's not a complaining session it's being clear on what we don't know but also just saying here's, what we're doing there's no shame in it, so just talking about it right starts also just on the again the four minutes there sighing at do you put the monthly expenses in our things that aunt did and you can't pay off like a fine bill? Well, if it's a debt, I mean a phone bill is probably I would put it in spend yeah, I can't do that spend because that was a box of tricks and said that's probably spend right and then there's a whole dialogue on what exactly is in this spend category avis is we're going to talk about that we're totally going to talk about what you spend on what should go in those categories

Class Description

Surviving and thriving as a freelancer or working artist requires strong financial management skills, but getting there can seem stressful and overwhelming. Join financial expert and Fordham University MBA holder Galia Gichon for an introduction to a painless, seven-step plan for taking control of your personal finances.

In this course, you’ll set financial goals, create a budget that works for you, and establish the habits that lead to financial health. You’ll learn how to make financial planning less time-consuming by spending 30 minutes a week directly focused on your budget, spending, savings, and investments. You’ll also learn how to create immediate growth in your savings and investment accounts. Galia will also share key techniques for taking the stress and uncertainty out of planning for retirement.

By the end of this course, you’ll be able to confidently and successfully manage your personal finances, and have more time (and money!) to do the work you love.

Reviews

Kieu Truong
 

I love how approachable and welcoming and easy to understand this course has make financial terms and situation sounds. I love Galia and she makes I really feel calm and comfortable learning from her. Great!

Danielle Allen
 

This class was an eye-opener for me. I love the way Galia makes you feel comfortable thinking about as well as talking about your financial picture. I also appreciated her many examples and actionable steps for planning.

Shannon Borg
 

Galia is AWESOME! I love how down-to-earth she is (hence the name of her business!). I learned so much, and am going into a new year with a totally different outlook on my money. Now I have a plan, goals and much less anxiety about the whole process! Thank you, Galia!