5 Pieces of Dumb Financial Advice That Most People Believe
When it comes to money, everyone likes to put in their two cents.
Oh, you should definitely buy and not rent. Stay away from credit cards; they’re evil. Why are you so worried about your credit score? It doesn’t matter.
There’s a lot of — quite frankly — dumb advice floating around out there, and it can be difficult to figure out what’s up and what’s down.
Well, we’re here to set the record straight. Here’s all the dumb money advice out there — and what you should do instead.
Dumb Advice #1: Put Your Money in a Savings Account
You’ve probably heard the best way to grow your money is to stick it in a savings account and leave it there for, well, ever. That’s bad advice.
But maybe you’re just looking for a place to safely stash it away — but still earn money. Under your mattress or in a safe will get you nothing. And a typical savings account won’t do you much better. (Ahem, .09% is nothing these days.)
But a debit card called Aspiration lets you earn up to 5% cash back and up to 11 times the average interest on the money in your account.
Not too shabby!
Enter your email address here, and link your bank account to see how much extra cash you can get with your free Aspiration account. And don’t worry. Your money is FDIC insured and under a military-grade encryption. That’s nerd talk for “this is totally safe.”
Dumb Advice #2: Keep Wasting Hundreds of Dollars on Homeowner’s Insurance
You’re probably wasting money right now. And it’s probably on something you’d never expect — your homeowners insurance policy.
This isn’t something you actively think about — you just know you’re required to have it.
The problem is, you’re paying too much. Luckily, an insurance company called Policygenius makes it easy to find out how much you’re overpaying. It finds you cheaper policies and special discounts in minutes.
In fact, it saves users an average of $690 a year — or $57.50 a month. It’ll even help you break up with your old insurance company. (You’re allowed to cancel your policy at any time, and your company should issue you a refund.)
And just because you’re saving money doesn’t mean you’re skimping on coverage. Policygenius will make sure you have what you need.
Just answer a few questions about your home to get started.
Dumb Advice #3: You Need to Save $1,000,000,000,000,000 Before You Die
All your life, people have been telling you to save. Save for emergencies. Save for the future. Save for your family. At that rate, you’re gonna need a gazillion dollars in the bank.
Here’s the thing: You should keep a healthy amount of savings in the bank, but if you want to give your family up to $1 million, use something called term life insurance.
We suggest a company like Bestow. Maybe you’ve considered this before, but thought it was only for rich or older people. But we’re hearing that people are getting it for as little as $8 a month. And the truth is, as long as you’re under 54, this is one of the smartest things you can do with your money right now.
You don’t even need to leave your house to apply. It takes just minutes to see how much you could leave your loved ones — without saving a gazillion dollars.
Dumb Advice #4: You Should Get 3 Auto Insurance Quotes
People love to tell you to shop around. “You should be getting three different quotes to get the best price on car insurance,” they say.
Sure, this sounds like good advice. Here’s why it’s wrong: Comparing only three companies isn’t nearly enough. We suggest comparing 40. But who has time for that?
A company called Gabi will do it for you for free. It gets people an average of $825 back in their bank accounts a year — and you’ll get the same coverage you already have.
It doesn’t matter when you last renewed; you can get a check from your old company for the time left on your previous policy. (Read: They probably owe you money.)
You don’t have to make any calls or fill out any forms. It takes two minutes to see how much Gabi can put back in your pocket. And the best part? Because we’re driving less, some insurers are slashing prices this month.
Dumb Advice #5: The Only Way to Earn Money is With a Job
People will say the only way you can earn money is with a real job. Not true. You can make money by watching the news.
Seriously. Research companies want to pay you to watch the news. You could add up to $225 a month to your pocket by signing up for a free account with Swagbucks. It’ll present you with short news clips to choose from every day, then ask you a few questions about them.
You just have to answer honestly, and Swagbucks will continue to pay you every month. This might sound too good to be true, but it’s already paid its users more than $429 million. We talked to one user in Pennsylvania, 52-year-old Carolinda Hendrickson, who earned $1,200 in a year.
It takes about one minute to sign up, and start getting paid to watch the news.