If Your Rent is More Than $1,200/Month, Make These 6 Moves

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1. Protect Everything in Your Apartment for $5

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What if you lost everything? All your possessions — your clothes, your furniture, your laptop. Any jewelry you have. Even your microwave oven.

A kitchen fire could torch it all. A burglar could steal your valuables. And where would you be then?

You could be out of luck — unless you have renters insurance. And here’s the thing: It can be surprisingly cheap, especially if you get it through a company like Lemonade.

With Lemonade, you could get a policy for as little as $5 a month — less than half the average rate. 

Even better? No phone calls. No lengthy sign-up process. The whole process takes just 10 minutes. And $5-a-month renters insurance policy could be a lifesaver in the event of a fire or theft or vandalism.

If you think you don’t own enough stuff that’s worth insuring, just take a look around you. How else would you be able to replace your possessions if you lost them all? Check to see how much it would cost to insure it all. You might be surprised. 

2. Leave Your Family up to $1 Million

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Have you thought about how your family would pay the rent without your income after you’re gone? Chances are your checking account balance won’t last forever.

Now’s a good time to start planning for the future by securing a life insurance policy. 

You’re probably thinking: I don’t have the time or money for that. But your application shouldn’t take more than about five minutes — and you could leave your family up to $1 million in life insurance (for as little as $5/month) with a company called Bestow.

You can change or cancel your plan at any time. Plus, the security of knowing your family is taken care of is priceless.

If you’re under the age of 54 and want to get a fast life insurance quote without a medical exam, pushy sales calls or even getting up from the couch, get a free quote from Bestow.

3. If You Can’t Lower Your Rent, Cut Your Credit Card Bill

If you’re like most of us, two of your biggest financial burdens are rent and credit card debt. High credit card bills make it that much harder to pay the rent every month.

One problem: Your credit card companies are getting rich by ripping you off with insane rates. However, a company called Fiona could lower your monthly payment.

Here’s how it works: Fiona will match you with a low-interest loan you can use to pay off every credit card balance you have. The benefit? You’re left with just one bill to pay every month, and because the interest rate is so much lower, you can get out of debt so much faster.

If you’re worried you won’t qualify, it’s free to check online. It takes just two minutes, and it could save you thousands of dollars. Totally worth it.

4. Save up to $865 a Year on Car Insurance

It may be difficult to negotiate rent, but you can negotiate some of your other monthly bills — like car insurance. When was the last time you shopped around for that? Was it more than six months ago?

If so, you’re probably overpaying, and possibly by hundreds of dollars. Yep. Experts say you should compare rates twice a year to get the best deal.

Twice a year? Yeah, we don’t want to do that either. 

A service called Gabi does all the shopping for you to find cheaper insurance — with the same coverage and deductibles you already have. And it saves customers an average of $865 a year.

You don’t have to fill out any forms. Just link your existing insurance account and enter your driver’s license, and it will start looking for cheaper coverage.

Plus, after you sign up, Gabi will keep looking for savings. No more shopping. 

5. Add up to 300 Points to Your Credit Score

You’re doing pretty good. You’ve got a decent place to live, you make your rent payments — you’re not overly concerned with your credit score. In fact, you might not think much about it at all.

But what happens when you want to buy a house? Or a car? Even a five-point difference in your credit score could make a huge difference. That’s why it’s important to keep tabs on your credit score, which you can do for free through Credit Sesame.

James Cooper, of Atlanta, used Credit Sesame to raise his credit score nearly 300 points in six months.* “They showed me the ins and outs — how to dot the I’s and cross the T’s,” he said.

If you want to make sure your credit score is in tip-top shape, Credit Sesame will help. Just sign up for an account — it takes 90 seconds — and Credit Sesame will outline exactly what you need to do to give your credit a boost

6. Buy a Piece of a Corporation When You Use Your Debit Card

Take a look at the Forbes Richest People list, and you’ll notice almost all the billionaires have one thing in common — they own another company. 

But if you work for a living and don’t happen to have millions of dollars lying around, that can sound totally out of reach. 

That’s why we like Stash. Its debit card lets you be a part of something that’s normally exclusive to the richest of the rich — buying pieces of other companies. But Stash lets you start by just spending like you normally would. When you make a qualifying purchase with your Stash debit card, it rewards you with stock-back — up to 5%. 

You can own pieces of well-known companies, like Walmart, Amazon, Starbucks* and many more.

The best part? When these companies profit, so can you. Some companies even send you a check every quarter for your share of the profits, called dividends.

It takes two minutes to sign up and open your debit card, and Stash offers subscription plans starting at $1.00 a month.** As a reminder, Investing involves risk.

You might not be in the next issue of Forbes, but this is a great way to get started. 

*Square Budgets is a Paid Affiliate/partner of Stash. This material is not intended as investment advice and is not meant to suggest that any securities are suitable investments for any particular investor. Investment advice is only provided to Stash customers.

**You’ll also bear the standard fees and expenses reflected in the pricing of the ETFs in your account, plus fees for various ancillary services charged by Stash.

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