You can’t be Bad and Boujee with Bad Credit: Journey to the 850 Club

bad credit meme

It is almost the end of the first quarter of the year! Time flies when you are having fun (or just living life)! LOL! By now, you should have pulled your credit report. You are entitled to receive all three credit reports (Experian, Transunion, and Equifax) once a year for free. I pulled my credit report and need some improvement on my score. I desire to be in the 850 Club. I am not too far off so I can totally do it.

**If you have not pulled your credit; go to Annual Credit Report **

To improve my score; I took out a small loan with Self-Lender.  A credit builder loan is a small loan that you make monthly payments on while that money is being saved in a interest-bearing account. I am increasing my credit score by making on-time payments. Those on-time payments are being recorded to all credit bureaus. Why a Credit-Builder Loan?! Glad you asked! I did not want to commit to a credit card forever but I wanted to increase my credit score. Credit-Builder Loans are for a fixed term such as 1-3 years depending on what the banks and credit unions allow.

Why Self-Lender?!!? Because they had a Facebook ad! LOL! I know.. I know… Such a millennial response! LOL! Once I did my extensive research; I realized that they are a legitimate financial institution (Doing Business As… Lead Bank) that gives you the loan. I also read the reviews and all were very positive.  It is a paperless application and has an app to monitor my progress. (Less Paper=Better). Since I acquired this loan 5 months ago, my credit score has increased 70 points!! Once I am done with this loan; I will have these funds in a CD account with the option to withdraw the money or maintain the Certificate of Deposit. I am increasing my credit score and saving money at the same time. Sounds like a Plan to me!

Build Credit Nugget

Now flashback to 2010…. When I graduated from college; I needed to establish my credit profile. I acquired a Capital One Secured Credit Card. I made a deposit of $50 and received a credit line of $300. I made on time payments and my credit line was increased to $800. Awesome!  I am still a Capital One customer to this day. I highly recommend Capital One Secured Credit Card for the following reasons:

  1. Great Customer Service
  2. Works with People with Limited or Bad Credit
  3. Amazing Credit Booster

Lesson of the Day

If you have pulled your credit report and your credit score is not the best and needs improvement of if you have no credit; a credit builder loan and secured credit card are the best way to start. Below is the link to Self-Lender and Capital One.


Capital One


Happy Saving and Credit Building!


Miss Diva Dollars

Question for my Divas and Divos

What did you do to establish your credit or improve credit if you hit a slump with your credit score?



** Please note that this is not a sponsored post by these companies. I am sharing my financial story. Please note that you are not guaranteed approval from either company. I am not a financial advisor and they are risks with any financial instrument. If you have any questions; you need to contact a certified financial advisor.**

Giving is Better than Receiving


!giving tuesday


Today is Giving Tuesday!! The purpose of Giving Tuesday is to encourage people to donate to non-profit organizations that are doing great work in the community. I know… I know… You spent all your money on Black Friday, Shop Small Saturday, and Cyber Monday…. You have some left over to give to organization that help others. That is reason for the Holiday Season right?!!? Well… For me, it is….

Below are a list of organization that are near and dear to my heart because these organization focus on serving people in under served communities make better financial decision. You know this DIVA is all for helping people to do better with their COINS. You can click on the name to find out how you can volunteer or donate to these organizations.


Ladder Up– This non-profit organization provides free tax preparation and financial literacy workshops throughout the Chicagoland area.


Institute Financial Literacy– This non-profit organization develops financial literacy curriculum for other organizations to utilize in their programming.


One Stock One Future– This non-profit organization teaches teens how to understand the stock market.


As you much as I encourage you to save and invest your coins; you should also donate them as well.

You know how the saying goes… “It is Better to Give than Recieve”.


Keep on Giving!



Miss Diva Dollars

Diversify Your Coins: Invest in Real Estate with REITs

Dear Divas and Divos,

We need to continue to diversify your coins. You can diversify your coins by investing in real estate! I know…. I know what you are thinking….. You probably do not want to be a landlord. Me neither?!?! There is an easy way to invest in real estate without the hassle of fixing toilets and roofs.

You can invest in REITs. REIT is an acronym for Real Estate Investment Trust. A REIT is a company that owns and operates income-producing real estate. It does this by leasing space and collecting rent on its real estate, the company generates income which is paid out to shareholders in the form of dividends. It gives investors the opportunity to own valuable real estate and help communities grow and thrive.

Why should you invest in REITs instead of purchase property? Great Question!

REITs offer people who want to invest in real estate with the ease similar to investing in publicly traded stocks. They are required to distribute at least 90% of their taxable income. That means you will always receive a return on your investment as long you hold the investment.

How can I invest in a REIT as a millennial with little to no funds? I GOT YOU!

You can invest in a REIT with not a lot of money. Below are top 3 REITs that I recommend based on low investment minimum and fee structure:

1. Fundrise

One of the more popular REITs started by a group of millennials. Their portfolio consists of a mix of commercial, residential, and single-family properties. Minimum investment amount is $500. There is an annual 1% account fee.

2. Realty Mogul

A real estate crowdfunding site that allows people to invest in commercial real estate opportunities. It is a private REIT. Minimum investment amount is $1000. There is annual account fee of approximately 0.50%.

3. Rich Uncles

A real estate crowdfunding site that allows people to invest in purpose-built student housing properties. It is a Public REIT. Minimum investment amount is $5.00. There are no annual account fees.

So there you have it Divas and Divos, you can start investing in Real Estate with just as little as $5.00. Start your investment portfolio today!

Happy Investing!


Miss Diva Dollars

Diversify Your Coins: Get Some Life Insurance



death and taxes


Dear Divas and Divos,

I know that quote is kinda morbid but it is at the absolute truth.  That time will come when it is time to move on to heaven. Are you ready for that? Have you thought about what your financial legacy will be?

Answer to question is LIFE INSURANCE!

You should invest in yourself and purchase life insurance.

Q: What is Life Insurance?

A: Glad you asked! Life Insurance is an insurance policy that pays out a sum of money at the time of your demise.

Q: I’m young! Why should I think about that?

A: Tomorrow is not guaranteed to anyone so you should prepare yourself and your family to be able to take care of your funeral expenses. Funerals can become costly so a life insurance policy will offset those costs. ALSO, the best time to buy life insurance is before you turn 30.

It is cheapest in your twenties because your life span is longer than someone trying to purchase life insurance at 50.

Q: What kind of life insurance is available?

A: There is Term, Whole, and Variable Life Insurance policies.

Term Life Insurance is a type of life insurance that pays a benefit in the event of the death of the insured during a specified term. It has a fixed payment during the duration of the insurance term. Most people select 30 or 40 years term. Yes, it is a renewable product. It is the cheapest insurance product but it does not accumulate cash value.

Whole Life Insurance is a type of life insurance that provides lifelong coverage and accumulates cash value. This insurance product will remain intact as along as the premiums are paid on time or up to its maturity date.  It is significantly more expensive than term life insurance.

Variable Life Insurance is a type of permanent life insurance, because the death benefit will be paid if the insured dies any time as long as there is sufficient cash value to pay the costs of insurance in the policy. There are 3 parts to variable life insurance: death benefit, cash value, and premium. This is probably the most expensive of the three but there is more opportunity to gain more returns on this financial products.

Q: What are some companies that offer life insurance?

A: There are many companies that offer life insurance. Here are just a few:

State Farm

Colonial Penn


Mutual of Omaha

Mass Mutual


Protect Yourself. Protect Your Family. Buy Some Life Insurance.


Miss Diva Dollars

Diversify Your Coins: SAVE Edition with US Savings Bonds

You can save your coins by purchasing a US Savings Bond.

bonds 2

I’m sure you remember your grandparents buying you one for Christmas when you were small….

No…. That’s okay… We will dive right into it.

What’s a Savings Bond?

A savings bond is a bond that is offered to individuals and institutions for a certain interest rate for a certain period of time. Basically, the US government is raising funds to fund capital projects and maintain the economy.

Sounds legit right?! Because it is. It’s one of the safest investments for your money. *

What’s so special about Savings Bonds?

Non-Marketable– Meaning you pay for what you buy. If you purchase a bond for $100; you will get that and interest back on your bond if you hold until it’s maturity date.

Interest Payment- This means that you will gain return on your investment. Interest on bonds compounds semi-annually  and accrue every year as long as you have it.

No Taxes-Saving bonds are not subject to state and local taxes so that will help if you may or may not have a tax bill once you file your taxes for the year.

What types of Savings Bonds are available?

Series EE and Series I bond are slighty different.

Series EE Bond are sold at face value and can be redeemed at face value if you were to cash it in. It also offers a fixed rate of interest.

Series I Bond is sold at face value. The rate of interest adjusts according to inflation. If inflation increases, the rate of interest will adjust upward.

How can I purchase a Savings Bond?

Check out Treasury Direct.** You can create an account and purchase today. All you need is your social security number, checking or savings account, and email address.

Soooooooo… Another way to Diversify Your Coins is Saving Money which can be by purchasing a Savings Bonds. It is a financial interest that is backed by the federal government and carries very little risk.

Question of the Day: Did your grandparents or parents gift you a savings bond when you were little? If so, did you hold on to it.

Keep Stacking. Keep Saving,


Miss Diva Dollars



* I am not a licensed an investment professional. This is my blog to offer great personal finance tips and share my journey to financial stability. My words are not gospel. There is a level of risk with anything you put your coins into. Make sure you do your research! 
**Treasury Direct is an official government website where you can purchase US savings bonds. This is not a paid advertisement. 

Diversify Your Coins: EARN Edition

If you are following my Instagram; which you should…… Click Below.

Miss Diva Dollars

Every Monday I post a new financial tip. My financial mantra is EARN, SAVE, INVEST, REPEAT. That is how your money should do for you.

I am going to break down each one every Monday (Check in next week!)

Everyone has to earn money  in order to live and eat. That is the way of the world. As a Millennial, our financial situation is slightly different than the generations before us.

money woes 2

If you are a millennial reading this; I know that you feel this meme.

Sooooo what’s  a person to add some coins to their pocket….


Side Hustle help you make money on your time to help ease your financial burden so you can buy the guacolmole with your burrito bowl at Chipotle because we know that it costs extra…


So there is alot of companies that are apart of the gig economy that you can work for that will help you earn extra cash. Below is a sample list of them:

Uber– You already know…

Lyft-You already know…

Amazon Flex– Deliver Amazon Packages

SpotHero-You can rent out your parking spot.

Instacart-Does the grocery shopping for you

Postmates– Brings food to you

Uber Eats- See above.

Saucey-Bring Alcholol to your door (Must be 21 and older to indulge)

Task Rabbit-Errand Service

AirBnB-Turn your guest room into a money making machine.

All of these companies have different requirements but they are not strenous for the average person. I hope this helps on your journey to earning, saving, and and investing more. If you have worked any of these companies or created your own side hustle; post a comment below. I would love to hear your thoughts…

second job

Happy Saving,

Miss Diva Dollars



Mandy’s Money Minutes- MLK Edition

MLK Day 2


As you all know, Martin Luther King Jr. was a major advocate for social justice and economic equality for all.

We can continue to honor his legacy by investing an minority bank in your local area. You can open up a savings account or Certificate of Deposit (C.D.). By doing so, you are helping your community. Each time a person opens up an account or loan with a minority owned institution; that money is reinvested back into the community through home loans and small business loans. Below is the link to a list of minority owned institutions that you can support near you.

List of Minority-Owned Financial Institutions


MLK Day 1.jpg


Happy Savings!!


Miss Diva Dollars

Introducing Mandy’s Money Minutes

Hey There Divas and Divos!!

Happy New Year!!

Introducing some exciting things on Social Media!

**Mandy’s Money Minute**

Money minute

I will give financial tips and pieces of my financial story on Instagram and Facebook on Mondays in 2018.

I will strive to keep them under a minute! LOL!! Sometimes this diva can get a little chatty but I want everyone to get as much info as they can. You can check it out on the links below.



Happy Saving!!


Miss Diva Dollars