Take Control of Your Finances by Following These Three Steps

Posted 1 year ago by

We attended LearnVest Live last week and learned a lot of valuable lessons and shocking realities about finances. Here are some of the statistics that not only blew our minds, but seriously made us think:

  • 61% of Americans live paycheck to paycheck.
  • 30% of Americans who make $100,000 or more a year are in this position.


Most people think their money woes will go away when they make more money, but that rarely happens. Simply buying a house you really can’t afford and living above your means can easily make you a part of these statistics.

After listening to Alexa von Tobel, the CEO of LearnVest speak about how to take control and not be a statistic, we learned so much and just needed to share !


Step 1: Organize

Track everything and run your finances like you run your social life. Create a separate email account just for your bills and set up automatic calendar alerts for your money to-dos, so you never miss a deadline.

You also need to know important dates:

  • Your Bills: Both monthly and annual.
  • Your Savings: Make yourself a bill.
  • Your Taxes: Prep and payment schedule, if applicable.
  • Your Credit Score: Check monthly. Check for free and without being penalized at CreditKarma.com.

Step 2: Focus

Know your numbers:

  • Income
  • Expenses
  • Credit Score

Step 3: Know the 50/20/30 Method

Following this formula will help you figure out how much money you should be spending each month and on what, based on your income.

Essentials (50%) – Rent or mortgages, utilities, transportation to and from work, and groceries.

Future (20%) – Debt repayment, emergency savings and retirement funds.

Choices (30%) – The fun stuff: eating out, travel, shopping, gym, gifts etc…

Following these three steps will help get your finances in order. Think you need more help? Consider purchasing a financial plan from LearnVest!


Start Autumn Financially Stable by Attending LearnVest Live!

Posted 1 year ago by

Live in or near New York City? LearnVest, a financial planning company, is hosting an event for those who want to take control of their finances.


On October 1st, you can enjoy an evening of money advice from a certified financial planner, lifestyle tips from A-list tastemakers—and the opportunity to meet and mingle with other LearnVest fans.


Below are some of the exciting things in store:

  • Meet fashion designer Nanette Lepore, who launched her label with a $5,000 loan from her father.
  • Learn how to organize a budget you can actually stick to.
  • Speak to Joanna Coles, the Editor-in-Chief of Cosmopolitan.

Did we mention this event is only $25?! Buy tickets here.


We’re huge fans of LearnVest here at Broke & Chic so you’ll definitely see us there!


10 Ways to Nab That Corner Office

Posted 2 years ago by

Yesterday, LearnVest partnered with Chase Blueprint to have their first ever large-scale event. This event embodied the company’s mission: to empower people everywhere to take control of their money and live their richest lives.

Cosmopolitan’s new Editor-in-Chief, Joanna Coles (formerly the Editor-in-Chief of Marie Claire) was one of the key speakers. She gave the audience ten great tips on how to nab the corner office. They ‘re something you all should put into consideration if you want to get promotions thrown at you right and left. We might be broke fashionistas now, but I know you’re secretly hoping to be a rich fashionista later…

1. Keep Moving

Don’t be afraid to move sideways. Never feel you should stay in a position more than two years. If it isn’t working, don’t stay and whine. Move on.

2. Try to get your boss on your side

It’s always important to make allies in the office.

3. Pay attention to people who are good at what you are not

– Learn what they do. If necessary, copy it.

– Don’t waste your time getting sucked into office politics. Your job is to do it well and go home. Don’t spend your lunch break gossiping, those people never land their dream jobs.

When you go back to the office, take a look at those gossipers. You’ll notice they aren’t the ones getting the promotions. If you’re the gossiper…stop!

4. Don’t be afraid to ask for help

– Contact people you admire and ask them for 15 minuets to get their advice.

– Do what ever you have to do to meet with someone of value.

(Joanna actually jumped into the former Editor-in-Chief of Marie Claire’s cab in order to get the job)

5. When Negotiating your salary never say “Need”

– Explain why you’re worth more instead.

– Silence is the most powerful tool in negotiating. Start off your meeting like this…”as you know, I love it here. I’m in no hurry to leave, so I’d love to talk to you about the next step.”

– If you’re negotiating another offer, be prepared to take it. This process only works once.

– Be realistic. Know the ball park salary of others in your position.

(Joanna once had an employee ask for more money than even she was making)

6. Under promise, over deliver

– If you get to set the dead line, over estimate how much time you’ll need. If you finish early, submit it.

7. Always take the interview

– Go whether or not you want the job. Connecting with that person could bring you other opportunities.

– Don’t think taking a pay cut is a bad thing. You’ll have to alter your spending habits, but if it’ll help you later on…go for it!

(Joanna took two pay cuts in order to score her Editor-in-Chief position at Marie Claire)

8. Have a sense of humor

Don’t take yourself too seriously, no one else does.

– Don’t get defeansive

– Be flexible

– You’ll get a lot more done if you don’t feel the need to take all the credit.

9. Be friendly with your co-workers

– Praise others

– Remember, your duty to any boss is to diplomatic but honest. Never put others down. There are nice ways to say you disagree.

10. Hardest word in the English language? No.

But sometimes just say it and leave it like that. It’s liberating. If you don’t sound like you mean it or say maybe, they get confused. Be straightforward.

What do you think of Joanna’s wise words? Remember, always take risks. That’s where the opportunity and success is.

Other notable speakers at LearnVest Live included designer Cynthia Rowley, Top Chef judge Gail Simmons, LearnVest founder and CEO Alexa von Tobel and Gilt Group co-founder, Alexandra Wilkis Wilson. They gave advice in categories such as entrepreneurship, budgeting, career and investing.

All the speakers had wonderful things to say that I think will stay with me for years to come (if not forever). There is nothing better than getting advice from someone you aspire to be like someday. To learn more about this event go here.


Out and About: How to Take Control of Your Finances, featuring LearnVest & Marie Claire

Posted 3 years ago by

Just recently, Melissa Murphy of Office Style and I had the opportunity to attend “Women in Business,” the Marie Claire event showcasing Joanna Coles, Editor-in-Chief of Marie Claire and Alexa Von Tobel, Founder and CEO of LearnVest, in honor of Ruth Fertel, the founder of Ruth’s Chris Steak House. It was so great spending the evening celebrating the achievements of female leaders.

The event started off with Joanna Coles, telling us a funny story about a salon mishap and eventually it was turned over to Alexa von Tobel, who stole the show!

While looking for ways to better manage her own finances, Alexa saw a need for reliable financial guidance for women. And so, she launched LearnVest in 2008. Today, the personal finance and lifestyle website has helped over one million women gain control of their finances!

What an accomplishment on Alexa’s part! If you’re a lady who’s found herself not truly understanding her finances, LearnVest is for you. Don’t hesitate to check it out. Remember, Broke & Chic is here to teach you how to be fashionable and fabulous on a budget; LearnVest teaches you how to take control of that budget!

On an entrepreneurial note, if you have a dream, turn it into a reality. Women have more of a voice than they give themselves credit for. If you have an idea, don’t hesitate to act on it. Who knows…you could even be the next Mark Zuckerberg or Jack Dorsey!

Melissa (left)

  • Dress: $30 NY & Co.
  • Nude Pumps: $69 Nine West

Amanda-Raye (right)

What we learned:

Here’s a few things Melissa and I learned at this event that blew our minds. Needless to say, we both were eager to head home and organize our finances!

1. Only 40 years ago, women weren’t allowed to have a credit card in their own name.

2. Take control of your finances. Get organized and consolidate accounts. Treat your money like your social life!

3. Think about your life based on what you take home, not your salary. You might make 60,000/yr  but in reality, you only make 42,000/yr after taxes. Treat the later as your salary.

4. Your rent should only be 30%of your monthly income.

5. 20% of your income should go to essentials. Utilities, food, gas….

6. Your credit score is the only grade that matters when you’re out of school.

7.  According to Alexa Von Tobel, everyone should have an emergency fund of nine months of living expenses.

8. Should you buy or rent? It depends. If you don’t think you can live in a home for at least 16 years…don’t buy it.

9. All women should have their own bank accounts. Don’t let a man ever control your finances. Don’t rely on someone else to support you forever. Always have your own income. You never know. The only person you can really depend on to be there for you, is yourself!

10. Want a raise? Set up a meeting with your employer a month in advance to talk about your career. Be prepared to negotiate. According to Alexa, women have a hard time with this. Go for it ladies!

11. Don’t be to aggresive in your negotiation. Educate yourself on what others in your position all over the country are making.

12. 25% of the USA consists of single moms!

13. We make 6-10 money decisions everyday!

Helpful Articles from LearnVest

9 Ways to Raise Your Credit Score Immediately 

9 Secret Ways Stores Seduce Us Into Buying

4 Things To Do if You Don’t Get the Job

Is Your Spending Normal? 

Alexa von Tobel and I after the event.

Here’s a question for you. Why do men negotiate their salary tooth and nail and women don’t? Let us know you personal thoughts in the comments below.