Topic

Personal Finance

Financing & Loans, Personal Finance

5 Tax advantages of owning a home… #5 will make your day!

Whether you currently own a home or are just thinking about purchasing one, there are a number of tax advantages you’ll probably want to know about. These advantages are sometimes hidden within paperwork and difficult to find (without the help of an expensive accountant) or often overlooked by those of us who are not industry professionals. So we’re putting an end to the mystery by listing 5 of the most common (and money-saving) tax breaks of homeownership.

Continue reading

Financing & Loans, Personal Finance

Paying down debt vs. investing and saving. What’s the right choice?

Everyone’s financial situation is different, so the money decision(s) you make must be based on your current financial condition as well as where you’d like to see your financial status in the future. Sure, there are many rules of thumb when it comes to investing, saving, debt payments and more, but when it comes down to it, any decision you make must be built around your actual financial situation, not what others think it should be or what you wish it was.

Continue reading

Personal Finance

Money 911: Establishing an emergency fund

They happen all the time: those unanticipated expenses caused by illness… auto problems… job loss… appliance breakdowns… and the list goes on. Sure, they’re all part of life, but where’s the money supposed to come from to help pay for them? That’s where an emergency fund comes in handy.

Continue reading

Personal Finance

College savings – Facts and tips for parents

You know the saying, “The early bird catches the worm”. Well, when it comes to saving for college, the same idea holds true, but it’s more like, “The early bird catches financial peace of mind”.

It may seem as though your child’s college years are light years away, but time goes quickly and the last thing you want is to be caught financially unprepared for your child’s education. (Okay, it might not be the last thing you want, but it’s probably close.) So how do we stop that from happening? Read on…

Continue reading

Personal Finance

When the wedding is over: Merging money after marriage

When you search online for “list of marriage conflicts”, there is always one particular cause of conflict that appears in the Top 5: Money.

There are a number of complex psychological reasons why money causes stress and strife within a marriage. Perhaps one spouse has a fear of not having security; there’s a lack of trust within the relationship; there’s a fear that one spouse doesn’t have respect for the other’s monetary values… and the list goes on.

Continue reading

Personal Finance

How to cut monthly expenses to make a major impact on your budget – not your life

For those of us trying to save money, cutting expenses can often feel like an overwhelming task. We sometimes think we need to get rid of something “big” in order to get spending down to a manageable number. The problem with that approach is that typically the “bigger” the item we lose, the larger the impact on our life. The trick is to make enough “smaller” cuts so that the changes are imperceptible – well, at least almost imperceptible.

Continue reading

Personal Finance

Mutual funds vs. stocks: Which option is right for you?

Mutual funds… stocks… ETFs… bonds…CDs… TIPs… and that’s just the beginning of the list of potential investment vehicles. Unfortunately for many of us, when there are too many choices, confusion sets in and that leads to inaction. Not because we don’t want to take action, but because we don’t know what action to take.

Continue reading

FICO Scores & Credit Reports, Personal Finance

Does your credit impact your health?

You probably already knew this intuitively (for example, you might have read that paragraph above and said, “of course they’re connected, Jeanne!”). In spite of this, people are frequently surprised when I suggest that our health and our credit are closely connected. Health and credit are two things we don’t always see as linked… but they are. Your health can impact your credit. Your credit can impact your health.

Continue reading