Rich Girl Faith, Mailbox Money for the Carters, and Desperate Fashion – So Nouveau riche!

This is your January, Miss New Money Redux. Well, what did we learn this month?

$ That money can be used for other fulfilling purposes other than  having more and more material possessions. While those are nice too, if Miss New Money (me!) were a Rich Girl I’d  be able to be free with life. Free to choose a career or not; to live in a home ore not; to continue my education and prepare future generations. “And I’m freeeeeeeee…..freeeeeee & ballin’….yea I’m free & ballin’ “

$ That batting for mailboxes probably isn’t so funny if you’ve got money in there, mailbox money to be exact (wait, did you get it?).

$ That in times of disaster AND in economic triumph, have faith in your money and generously donate to those in need. Aren’t you learning how to make new money anyways? Text  Haiti to the number 90999 donate to the Red Cross today.

$ That Keeping up with the Carters, Miss Beyonce, Mr. Jay-Z and Weezy F-Baby, is expensive! But once you can hang with the big boys, financial freedom could look like this:

  1. Buying the most expensive food you can buy stuffed with the second most expensive food
  2. Wearing clothes with the hardest names to pronounce
  3. Lighting up your cigars with $100 bills

Or could it?

$ Having a bank that will lend money to you in your most desperate fashion moments exists….in France! France is ready to open up a new kind of banking system: one that will allow fashion designers who’ve fallen on hard times to borrow money from ‘fashion banks and the government will back it. Could this mean that designers are to become indentured servants of The French Republic if they can’t pay? So not Nouveau riche!

What did you learn this month?

Check back next week for the February edition of “If I was a Rich Girl: A Letter to Money” . Read how one aspiring finanshionista found out the hard way that what happens in college…doesn’t stay in college!

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A Bank for Fashion? Sorry PNC…

In an article titled, France backs fashion bank for crisis-hit designers, the new idea of a fashion bank (you heard me right) has emerged. “The fashion industry, which the government sees as part of France’s cultural heritage”, begins the article, “has been hit hard by the global spending slump…”. Some of our favorites (Christian Lacroix, Dior and Hermes) have been affected by the current economic order. In order for France to remain the top dog in the fashion world, the idea being proposed here is that France’s government backs or guarantees loans made to fashion houses and companies to sustain the fashion power the country continues to hold.

Top 100 Looks from Paris: Spring 2010 photo credit: Dan and Corina Lecca

A stimulus plan for fashion? Well not exactly. Parisians won’t be able to secure a mini – loan to purchase Jean Paul Gaultier 2010.  And if successful a local industry that employs  125,000 fashionably good looking people won’t have to suffer anymore. The ideal outcome is that we see a rise in Frances luxury/designer industry, something it wrote the book on.

A bank for fashion! Who would’ve thunk it!!?!?

What if there really was a lending institution where people could get mini-skirt loans? I think we call those C3’s. Or Credit Card Companies (such dirty words).

Sounds a little foolish, asking a bank for a loan so you can buy a skirt. But you don’t hesitate to ask Visa (oh snaps!). If you were to categorize how much debt you’ve accumulated into trends, out of all of the charges how much is for clothing? Food? Bills? Unexpected Surprises? Some financial money management software programs (I don’t know what to call them) do this for you but it’s not complicated and doesn’t require much more than a rough estimate.

I like to take a look when I am using my card because it gives me a sense of what I am unable to afford and reminds me that I need to find a better way. My last statement from the C3 (I only have one) reflected quite the poor person. I couldn’t  afford many of the Christmas gifts I purchased last month but I went ahead and bought charged them anyway. Bringing my C3 debt free victory right back to the beginning, and I’m starting “behind” b.k.a. “in debt“.

Open a few statements from the C3’s you owe (or owed). What kinds of stores appear often? Grocery Stores or Fast Food? Department Stores or Boutiques? When do you use your credit card the most?

Define it as you wish. Value it as you see fit.

Comments are Welcomed!

“I’m Getting Money” – Part Deux: How Hip-Hop Influences Your Money

“Keeping up with the Carters” is a special guest post by my boyfriend and the second edition of “I’m Getting Money“, where MNM discusses the financial influences present in music.  He shares many of the same views in terms of finding financial freedom. He however expresses his points of view in a comic and current way. Look for his posts in the future here at Miss New Money.

“No one wants to keep up with the Jones-es anymore. For those of us under the age of 25, you may not even know who the Jones-es are. Just know that they have the best of the best at all times. The best cars, the best clothes, the biggest houses…just know if you want it and don’t have it, the Jones-es do!

These days people aren’t worried much about the Jones-es; now it’s the Carters: Lil Wayne, Jay-Z, and the newest Carter, Beyonce.

They are the biggest celebrities of 2009 with Beyonce being named Billboard Woman of the Year, Jay-Z surpassing Elvis with the most number one albums of all time, and Lil Wayne having the highest selling album and concert tour in recent history. Combined, these three individuals have reigned supreme over the music and entertainment worlds.

Don’t believe me?

Turn on your TV or radio right now and I guarantee you will see or hear at least one of them and probably many others talking about them.

But are they setting unrealistic standards for the rest of us to meet? Beyonce wanted to Upgrade Jay.

But what about the rest of us?

I for one had no idea half of the designers she mention. And we can all be certain that if we can’t pronounce it, we more than likely can’t afford it. Jay-Z is a regular fashion icon among the black community, but Maison Martin Margiela and Ralph Lauren Purple Label ain’t cheap. And we all know the exploits of Lil Wayne. In just one evening he can “make it rain” the salary of a high powered executive.

A report came out last year stating that the buying power of African Americans will reach $1.1 trillion by 2012. Buying power, also referred to as disposable income, is the amount of money that is not used for necessary and everyday expenses; i.e. food, shelter, taxes and so forth. This means in two short years, African Americans would have enough money to bailout AIG and the auto industry all on our own!

Unfortunately, our priorities are pointed in a somewhat different direction. As the Carters continue to amass great fortunes and openly share the exploits of their riches, their fans aren’t always so lucky. While dropping $40,000 in a night doesn’t phase the Carter trio, it is more than the average annual salary of the rest of us ($33, 916 in 2007).

But the Carters can’t be to blame. Or can they? I wouldn’t say so. Is it their fault they were paid so exorbitantly? Of course, not. They have worked extremely hard to reach their own personal levels of success. And we can all be certain that they won’t break their spending habits to make the rest of us feel better about ourselves.

Instead, we need to look more closely at our own spending habits and see how they align with our incomes. Each of these individuals have an estimated net worth above $100 million, and Jay-Z and Beyonce are each worth well over $300 million. With that in mind, they are entitled to spend as they see fit.

But what about the rest of us?

Before you make futile attempts to keep up with the Carters with clothes, cars, or jewelry; make a grander effort to keep up with their net worth. When you reach those levels of success, reward yourself with the most expensive food you can buy stuffed with the second most expensive food you can buy; wear clothes with the hardest names to pronounce, because you’re sure it costs too much, then light up your cigars with $100 bills. But until then throw it in a BANK!”

If you would like to contribute a guest post, email MNM at missnewmoney@gmail.com!


MNM Vocabulary Lesson: New Money

new mon-ey [noo, nyoo muhn-ee]

1. wealth created where there once was none.

2. through financial principles and discipline, the money one accumulates.

3.  a person who has acquired considerable wealth within his or her generation.

– antonym

1. Old Money: inherited wealth

translations

1. Nouveau riche (french)

2. Nuevo Dinero (spanish)

3. nuovo denaro (italian)

4. Uusi raha (finnish- See Confessions of a Shopaholic (the movie))

Have faith in your money – give it away

The earthquake that hit Haiti this past Tuesday, the worst in two – hundred years, has left thousands dead and / or missing and has left many without shelter and basic necessities. As of yesterday afternoon, the Red Cross received donations in excess of $5.1 million. This week MNM takes a break from the focus of earning money and talks about giving it away.

Regardless of one’s spending or savings style, the blessing present in the ability to earn money is reciprocated and counter balanced with the ability to not only spend, but to be able to give it away and donate. Being generous to others with the money you make is much more than advantageous tax-write off.

I talk a lot about ‘buying stuff’ on this website, but the overall big picture is that of personal responsibility. You owe it to yourself (your future-self and your present-self), your family and your community to make smart financial choices. Everyone listed has an interest in … well… your pockets. Make a not-so-smart decision with your money and you and your family may end up in the hole. Make a smarter choice and you, your family and generations to come may never have to worry about home – ownership. 

Today your community needs you. All too often, people walk this earth feeling disconnected to those around them, but especially to those in different countries. The people of Haiti are a part of your community and they need you to make financial decisions that will have an impact on them. (Even a few of my favorite online boutiques are temporarily halting sales, basically not making any money,  out of respect to this national crisis.)

This tragedy is the first to utilize technology to an all time maximum. It is easier than ever to make contributions, as many sites are allowing you to simply send them a text message (removing many lazy excuses). “U.S. cell phone users have contributed more than $5 million in $10 increments to the Red Cross for Haiti disaster relief, by far the largest outpouring of support via mobile devices in history.”

For Mobile Donations (highly recommended) check out the sites below:

  • Wyclef Jean’s, Yele: to send $5,  text the word “Yele” to the number 501501
    The William J. Clinton Foundation: to send $10, text the word “Haiti” to 20222
  • Red Cross, text the word “Haiti” to the number 90999

Wireless carriers, including AT&T, Verizon Wireless, T-Mobile and Sprint, said they were not charging regular text-messaging fees on top of the donations.

Let go of your money in faith that it will return. More importantly, let go of your money in faith that it will have a real impact on those you gave it to. It is not business as usual and you should not follow your same routine.

* Remember in times of disaster, the rats come out! Be sure to validate the legitimacy of the site before you donate.

** Update: CNN has a complete list of VALID charities. Check it out here!

PHOTOS: 24-hours after the Haiti earthquake (from Reuters)

MNM Vocabulary Lesson: Mailbox Money

mail-box mon-ey /ˈmeɪlˌbɒks/ Show Spelled Pronunciation [meyl-boks muhn-ee]

  1. the money one collects from having to do no additional work
  2. monies placed inside one private box for incoming mail
  3. i.e: “As a landlord, I simply collect mailbox money every month”

– antonym

  1. Earned Money
  2. Employer set-up direct deposit
  3. i.e: “After working 80 hours, it’s payday. Trading hours for dollars is draining. I wish I had mailbox money”
Picture from Intuit

Picture from Intuit

Even with a job, career or otherwise, the addition of mailbox money to ones personal income can help offset many expenses.

Mailbox money is not only earned from investing in real estate, but from freelance writing (both online and off), monetized blogs or even some auction sites. Check out this Podcast from the Simple Dollar. It offers a unique insight to this writers sources of mailbox money.  Listen here!

If I was a Rich Girl: A Letter to Money

The first week of every month ” If I was a Rich Girl: A Letter to Money ” takes an intimate look at the true desires and drive behind ones personal money-making quest. The ‘need’ to accumulate New Money varies from person to person. Tell New Money what you would do if you were a Rich Girl.

Dear New Money,

I’ve got a gripe to pick with you. Where were you when I was growing up? You ignored me, my family and my neighborhood. When friends and neighbors were using you to stay current with trends, upgrade their homes, buy new cars, I was trying to make the little that I had last from week to week.

Because I learned how to interact with you by watching how others interacted with you, I only knew one way to make more of you: work until you retire. But I began to feel that the need to ‘pay’ for life was taking over my need to experience it. I’ve declined invitations because I didn’t want to spend you or work on weekends and holidays because I urgently felt I needed more of you. I also didn’t know what to do with you other than spend. And when it came time to pay for college, I asked (and kept asking) for others to loan me some of you because I knew of no other way to afford schooling.

I use to look at others and feel like I was unfairly forgotten about by you; that I was somehow left behind. But equipping myself with the proper financial education, tips and tools is allowing me to catch up. I use to think that the people whose households you were present in were special in a way that I would never be. I’ve learned that that isn’t true and that you don’t necessarily have favorites. In most cases, you do favor hard work but really, you favor those that take the time to learn about you.

You were hard to understand at first. I was glad to find that the basics were actually pretty basic and that anyone can apply a few methods that will ultimately earn them more of you. And although I may have accumulated student loan debt, I now have savings accounts, investments, and even a retirement account, that I keep putting more and more of you in. I’ve learned better spending habits that keep me out of debt; and work smarter not harder to continue this journey.

If I was a wealthy girl, I’d have the freedom to be creative with life. The possibilities are endless when you have a solid financial foundation. I’d go back to school (debt free of course); open an empire of businesses and create community development centers throughout the country.  I’d ensure that my family would enter into an eternity of financial freedom. I’d be able to afford my dream lifestyle of luxury but more importantly I’d have the time to share my knowledge and remove the financial fears of others who were just like me.

New Money, I don’t work for you anymore (sorry!). You work for me. BACK TO WORK!!

Define it as you wish. Value it as you see fit.

If I Was a Rich Girl: A Letter to Money.

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