Rules For Borrowing & Lending Money + How To Ask For It Back!

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Sometimes in life we have to have tough conversations, and hands down one of the most awkward discussions can be those concerning money. Especially, if you’ve lent a friend or family member you’re hard-earned cash and they’ve yet to pay you back. There never seems to be the perfect words to start that “Well, I kind of need my money back” conversation.

One of the wisest pieces of advice I’ve ever received was to not lend money at all. According to my grandmother, it’s okay to be a monetary blessing to someone but you should never expect it back. She always said money has a funny way of messing up your personal relationships so only give gifts, not loans.

However, I admit, I haven’t always listened to her wise words. I’m guilty of helping a family member or two, even at times before my own personal needs were met.

Luckily, I’m older and wiser now. I’ve learned a few rules of the “money” game and they haven’t failed me yet. Here are 5 rules I’ve learned about borrowing and lending money, and most importantly how to ask for it back.

1. Don’t let anyone guilt trip you.
Mixing finances and loved ones can be risky so make sure you are giving from you heart. Don’t let anyone force  or guilt trip you into your decision. Take time to think about your choice, even if it means giving yourself a few days before you give a yes or no answer.

2. Write a contract.
Both parties should have a clear understanding of how much money is being lent and when it will be paid back. Whether we are dealing with a small or large amount of money, the best way to be “on the same page” is to write and sign a contract. In event of the worst-case scenario, a contract gives you proof to purse legal action.

3. Communicate by phone or in person.
Communicating via text message and email is an easy way for misunderstandings, which can lead to hostility, to occur. When you initiate the conversation, be as pleasant as possible and try asking about what they borrowed the money for. For example, if you lent money to help your friend get a new tire ask, “How is your car running now with the new tire?” Being straightforward, yet pleasant, is the best way for the already-awkward conversation to go best. Also, if they don’t have all of the money at once try recollecting it in installments.

4. Have them spot you during an event.  
If months go by and the person has yet to reimburse your cash, don’t go on a yelling and screaming rampage. That will continue to ruin the already tarnished relationship you have with the individual. Try a more sneaky way to have them repay you. Invite the person to lunch or the movies, and when the bill comes ask if they can cover you. Say, “Well you owe me that $40 dollars so if you cover me we will call it even.” This may not work in every situation, but it’s a fun way to try.

5. Don’t bring other people into the situation.
Complaining about your owed money with other friends and family members can perpetuate the problem. You must understand the risk of not getting the money back with you initially give it out. You may be forced to take a loss. However, you should feel comfort in knowing that the next time they ask you for money — because they usually do — you can politely decline.

http://hellobeautiful.com/2635439/rules-for-borrowing-lending-money-how-to-ask-for-it-back/

George Zimmerman’s Mother Pens Her Son’s Innocence In Open Letter

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george zimmerman trayvon martin

George Zimmerman’s family just doesn’t know when to quit. First his father and brother attempted to publicly declare his innocence — which most likely did more to hurt his case than help — and now his mother is pleading her case.

In an open letter penned on her older son’s Twitter account, Gladys Zimmerman said her son, who was arrested for the shooting and killing of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, is innocent and the justice system has failed to serve her family.

“April 11, 2012 will forever be remembered by the Zimmerman family as the day the justice system failed us as Americans, and as a consequence an innocent man was arrested for a crime he did not commit, solely to placate the masses,” she wrote in the letter, which was translated from Spanish.

“The media, with the help of social media made it their prerogative to judge and sentence George before and after his arrest,” she said. “Even members of Congress and self-proclaimed “activists” used and routinely use to this day the term “murderer” when they speak of him–in effect they are re-enforcing the only acceptable judicial outcome in their eyes. Many have seen to it that he be judged by the public, the very public they were keen on misinforming.”

In response to her letter, Martin’s parents released a statement saying Zimmerman is not innocent and there was overwhelming evidence to justify his arrest.

“One year ago today, the State of Florida decided that there was evidence to charge George Zimmerman for second-degree murder for profiling, pursuing, and killing our unarmed teenage son,” it reads. :The facts of this case are simple and straightforward. We are confident that a jury following the overwhelming evidence against George Zimmerman will hold him accountable for killing our son, Trayvon Martin.”

The statement goes on to say:

“For the Zimmerman family to allege that the justice system doesn’t work, simply because they are unhappy their son was arrested in the first place, is disingenuous and disrespectful to the very system that is currently affording him every available opportunity to defend himself,” the statement continued. “The arrest of an admitted killer is not a violation of due process, it is due process. Most will agree that no one has been given greater consideration by the justice system for killing an unarmed child, than George Zimmerman. We continue to pray that our son’s death will serve as a catalyst in preventing other senseless acts of gun violence.”

The murder trail is scheduled to being on June 10th. Tell us what you think of Gladys Zimmerman’s new letter.

http://hellobeautiful.com/2635371/george-zimmermans-mother-pens-her-sons-innocence-in-open-letter/

How To Avoid Overdraft Fees

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In 2012, American banks earned $32 billion dollars in overdraft frees, up 1.3 percent from the previous year. Despite new rules to help prevent abusive overdraft charges, banks and credit unions have still found a way to end up on top.

According to the Huffington Post, financially struggling Americans have been hit the hardest because many banks have forced consumers into “costly overdraft-protection schemes.”

“Consumers might be trying to hide from the banks, but the banks keep coming up with creative ways to pick their pockets,” said Ed Mierzwinski, a consumer program director. Here’s what he had to say about overdraft schemes:

According to Mierzwinski and others, the overdraft rules have led to a host of unexpected consequences, hurting consumers. Some banks now routinely change the chronological order of consumer transactions, putting larger purchases first, so that account holders sometimes find themselves paying multiple overdraft fees even if they exceeded their account balance only once. (The biggest banks charge a fee of $35 for each overdraft, on average.) Some institutions have raised the penalties on bounced checks to scare consumers into opting into overdraft protection.

So to make sure that your hard-earned paychecks aren’t adding to the banks’ billion dollar revenues, let’s look at 5 ways to take responsibility for your spending and avoid being charged those unwanted overdraft fees.

1. Balance your own checkbook. You should always strive to keep your account in a positive balance, and to do this you can’t always rely on the available balance amount that your bank provides. Online banking is a great tool, however the available balance does not always reflect your scheduled or recently-made purchases.

2. Create an artificial buffer. No one knows your spending habits like you do, so give yourself a cushion in your checking account. Most overdrafts fees are the result of small purchases, like fast food, coffee or gas. So just in case you go over your limit, give yourself a $50, $75 or $100 buffer. This will ensure your account balance always stays in the green.

3. Sign up for overdraft protection by linking a backup account. Although this service is not free at all banks, it’s definitely worth the extra money if your are prone to over drafting your account.  To cover any overages, considering linking your checking account to a savings, credit card or line of credit.

4. Go old school and use cash. Using cash more often is a great way to avoid potential overdraft fees because you can’t over spend with the dollar bills you have in your pocket. Some reports show that people tend to spend more with debit cards than they do with cash. So to avoid being statistic, make more bill payments and give yourself a daily or weekly cash budget.

5. Sign up for alerts. Services like Mint.com provide phone, email and text alerts when your account is reaching low funds. This will help you make better choices for your daily spending and prepare for unexpected events, like a flat tire or kitchen appliance repair.

http://hellobeautiful.com/2632001/how-to-avoid-overdraft-fees/

7 Of Our Favorite Hood Chicks From Film

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Taraji P Henson "Baby Boy"

When we think of our favorite hood films — the movies that we grew up watching and know nearly all the words to — the leading ladies come to mind. Many of these classic films are still relevant today because of the Hollywood’s actresses who were able to play insightful characters and tell accurate stories about urban life with humor and class.

READ MORE: 7 Of Our Favorite Hood Chicks From Film

There’s nothing like a good ‘ol classic, so let’s take a look back at 7 our favorite hood chicks from the big screen.

Rick Ross Needs A Lesson On How To Apologize

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rick ross

Rick Ross is in dire need of a How To Apologize 101 course.

Today, the rapper and businessman sent out  a series of Twitter messages which were meant to be an apology of his verse on a song called “U.O.E.N.O,” — where he raps about giving a girl ecstasy and having his way with her  — however he failed to take full responsibly for his words and instead blames it on our interpretation.

In the song he raps: “Put molly all in her champagne, she ain’t even know it/I took her home and I enjoyed that, she ain’t even know it.”

“I don’t condone rape. Apologies for the #lyric interpreted as rape. #BOSS,” he wrote. “Apologies to my many business partners, who would never promote violence against women. @ReebokClassics @ultraviolet.”

This half-apology backtracks on the bottom line: this isn’t an issue of how we “interpreted” the lyric, it’s the nature of his statement. He’s basically saying,”I’m sorry you guys took it that way” while disregarding that slipping a women drugs and “enjoying that” is never acceptable under any circumstances.

And to make matters worse, it seems Ross only dished out this “I’m sorry” because of the live protest that took place at Reebok’s New York City store yesterday. Multiple women’s rights groups are pressuring the shoe line to cancel Ross’ endorsement deal, and now since his money is involved, looks like Ross found a voice to speak up.

“It’s time for Reebok to stop using their brand as a platform to promote rape and the idea that rape is not just okay, but cool,” said Nita Chaudhary, cofounder of women’s rights groups UltraViolet. “It’s time for Reebok to answer the 72,000 customers who want them to stop promoting violence against women and fire Rick Ross.”

In a previous interview with New Orleans’ 93.3 FM, Ross described this controversy as a simple misunderstanding.

“There was a misunderstanding with a lyric, a misinterpretation where the term rape was — wasn’t used. I would never use the term rape, you know, in my lyrics,” he said.

I don’t know what kind of fools he takes us as but this is not a misinterpretation. Whether Ross says the word or uses its dictionary definition, rape is rape.

Let’s hope Rick Ross finds the light and learns how to give a real, whole-hearted apology.

http://hellobeautiful.com/2633346/rick-ross-needs-a-lesson-on-how-to-apologize/

 

5 Tips to Maintain Your College Friendships After Graduation

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The saying is true: college really is the best years of your life. Not only do you live on your own, grow comfortable in your own skin and party until you pass out, you meet some of the most amazing people and those bonds grow into lifelong friendships.

Fast forward four years to graduation, and then another couple of years of “living in the real world,” keeping in touch with your college ride-or-dies can seem more like a chore than pleasure.

READ MORE:  5 Tips to Maintain Your College Friendships After Graduation

Post-college life can be a whirlwind and now that your network of friends no longer live down the hall or around the corner — they are disbursed across the country or even the globe — it takes serious effort on both parties to stay connected.

Here are 5 tips we rounded up to help you maintain healthily relationships with your best friends from college.

1. Utilize social media. 

Thank God for Facebook, Skype, Instagram and Twitter. These days it’s fairly easy to stay on the radar and up to date with what’s going on in your friend’s lives. To make it more personal, consider creating a Facebook group for your close circle of friends. This will allow you to easily write updates and share photos of your new life after college.

2. Call for life’s major events.

Yes, we live in a culture were sending a casual text is more common than a phone call, but to keep in touch with your friends after college you have to actually put forth energy. Keep text messages reserved for informal “hellos” and “how are you doings.” When it comes to the major events in life — weddings, births, funerals, advanced degrees, divorces, surgeries and home buying — pick up the phone! It’s always better to hear a live voice during life’s big, tear-jerking moments.

How To Avoid Overdraft Fees

Standard

In 2012, American banks earned $32 billion dollars in overdraft frees, up 1.3 percent from the previous year. Despite new rules to help prevent abusive overdraft charges, banks and credit unions have still found a way to end up on top.

According to the Huffington Post, financially struggling Americans have been hit the hardest because many banks have forced consumers into “costly overdraft-protection schemes.”

READ MORE: How To Avoid Overdraft Fees

“Consumers might be trying to hide from the banks, but the banks keep coming up with creative ways to pick their pockets,” said Ed Mierzwinski, a consumer program director. Here’s what he had to say about overdraft schemes:

According to Mierzwinski and others, the overdraft rules have led to a host of unexpected consequences, hurting consumers. Some banks now routinely change the chronological order of consumer transactions, putting larger purchases first, so that account holders sometimes find themselves paying multiple overdraft fees even if they exceeded their account balance only once. (The biggest banks charge a fee of $35 for each overdraft, on average.) Some institutions have raised the penalties on bounced checks to scare consumers into opting into overdraft protection.

So to make sure that your hard-earned paychecks aren’t adding to the banks’ billion dollar revenues, let’s look at 5 ways to take responsibility for your spending and avoid being charged those unwanted overdraft fees.

1. Balance your own checkbook. You should always strive to keep your account in a positive balance, and to do this you can’t always rely on the available balance amount that your bank provides. Online banking is a great tool, however the available balance does not always reflect your scheduled or recently-made purchases.

2. Create an artificial buffer. No one knows your spending habits like you do, so give yourself a cushion in your checking account. Most overdrafts fees are the result of small purchases, like fast food, coffee or gas. So just in case you go over your limit, give yourself a $50, $75 or $100 buffer. This will ensure your account balance always stays in the green.

3. Sign up for overdraft protection by linking a backup account. Although this service is not free at all banks, it’s definitely worth the extra money if your are prone to over drafting your account.  To cover any overages, considering linking your checking account to a savings, credit card or line of credit.

4. Go old school and use cash. Using cash more often is a great way to avoid potential overdraft fees because you can’t over spend with the dollar bills you have in your pocket. Some reports show that people tend to spend more with debit cards than they do with cash. So to avoid being statistic, make more bill payments and give yourself a daily or weekly cash budget.

5. Sign up for alerts. Services like Mint.com provide phone, email and text alerts when your account is reaching low funds. This will help you make better choices for your daily spending and prepare for unexpected events, like a flat tire or kitchen appliance repair.