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home : life : personal finance July 27, 2017

How the state you live in affects your college savings strategy
(BPT) - The cost of a four-year college degree now hovers around the $100,000 mark, according to data from the National Center for Education Statistics. While high college costs seem universal these days, college savings strategies are far from a one-size-fits-all. Many factors influence how you&rs... More >>


Seeking a small business loan? What you should know
(BPT) - Small businesses still struggle to obtain credit; nearly half of those who applied for credit in 2016 didn’t get all the funding they sought, and 17 percent of those who didn’t apply for financing skipped it because they didn’t think they could get what they needed, accord... More >>


Finding success in direct sales
(BPT) - What’s better than being your own boss, setting your own hours, determining your own salary and having an office wherever you happen to be? It’s a Utopian idea that is reality for tens of thousands of people working independently in direct sales worldwide. But getting there isn&... More >>


Tips to prepare your budget before buying a home
(BPT) - It’s virtually impossible to know what size home you can afford if you aren’t fully aware of how much money you are earning and how much you are spending each month.Start with your income: How much do you bring home after taxes and retirement plan contributions?Next, look at you... More >>


Break from basic at home and away [Infographic]
(BPT) - A new survey uncovers the majority of Americans describe time off from work as “basic” or “chill” (53 percent) — far more so than “eventful” (15 percent) or “adventurous” (13 percent) — but are willing to break from basic.The surve... More >>


3 tips to save money every wedding guest should know
(BPT) - Wedding season fills summer weekends with nuptials, and while we enjoy celebrating the bride and groom, all the “something borrowed and something blue” adds up to some serious green. In fact, a new survey from Bankrate.com (April 2017) found that nearly half of those surveyed &m... More >>


How to use your home equity in retirement
(BPT) - Most of us save and plan for decades to enjoy the period of our life when we no longer need to go into the office and work an eight-hour day for a paycheck.But even with those decades of hard work, it can be tough to save up enough cash to cover all your costs in retirement. Many soon-to-be... More >>


4 strategies to grow your finances in retirement
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5 Investment Strategies That Can Outlast Market Spikes
(BPT) - You’re familiar with the saying “If it seems too good to be true, it probably is”?Just like any other scheme to “get rich quick,” attempting to buy low and sell high based on intermittent fluctuations in the stock market—also known as “market timing... More >>


7 tips for balancing retirement savings and paying for college
(BPT) - Most people want to help their children pay for a quality college education, but it can be difficult to balance personal financial goals and funding your kids' educational aspirations. When retirement savings is sacrificed for college costs, it can be a disservice to the entire family.To he... More >>


Tips to help save money on prescription drug costs
(BPT) - Modern medications can work wonders, improving quality of life, curing illness and even saving lives. However, those miracles can come at a high cost, as anyone who’s had to pay for branded prescription medication knows. In fact, spending on prescription drugs has increased 73 percent... More >>


5 steps that can improve your credit score in 100 days or less
(BPT) - Low interest rates, a strong economy and the turn of the seasons are all causing the real estate market to heat up. More homes on the market bring more competition to buy the inventory that is out there. And one way to stand apart from other buyers who are vying for their dream home is to t... More >>


3 tips when buying a used car
(BPT) - If you’re in the market for a used vehicle, the car-buying process can be both an exciting and daunting experience. Whether you are a first-time buyer or looking for a different model, a car is one of the largest purchases you will ever make. It’s not only important to make sure... More >>


A smarter way to buy a home
(BPT) - Are you considering buying a home? With mortgage rates on the slow and steady incline, there may be no better time for a home purchase than now. Mortgage interest rates will likely continue to go up for the foreseeable future, according to recent data from the housing finance company Freddi... More >>


5 tips to find the financial advisor to match your retirement goals
(BPT) - The idea of retirement may start out as a distant dream. You have hopes and plans for that special time that seems so far away. Sooner or later that time will be here and hopefully you’ll be ready.However, recent research shows many people are not prepared to enjoy a financially stabl... More >>


3 steps to becoming a savvier online shopper
(BPT) - Every day, people use data to influence their decision making — from where to go for dinner, to selecting stocks in which they should invest, to where to live. Every Google search we perform, every Yelp review read or written, each item of clothing, houseware or electronic device we p... More >>


Rogue retirement account? Expert advice to reduce rollover stress
(BPT) - It's happened to almost everyone: you leave a job and have a retirement account that you are no longer actively contributing to. It sits there for months — maybe years — because you're not sure exactly where to move it or what the process is like to roll it over. You know that m... More >>


Ready to start saving? Sometimes the best rates can be found across state lines
(BPT) - With interest rates on the rise, now is a great time to start saving. Whether you want to put away money for a large purchase — such as a down payment on a new home or to purchase a vehicle — or you need a secure way to generate a return on money you’ve already set aside, ... More >>


Changing weather patterns leave homeowners underinsured
(BPT) - The U.S. has experienced significant shifts in the frequency, severity and locations of natural disasters — including floods, hurricanes, tornadoes and wildfires — during the past decade.As a result, more than 800 emergency or disaster declarations were made in the U.S. from 200... More >>


Survey: African-Americans passionate about homeownership, but fewer own homes
(BPT) - More than any other demographic group, African-Americans perceive homeownership as an integral component of the American Dream, and a way to build security and wealth for their families, according to a recent survey.The poll by Ipsos Public Affairs, conducted on behalf of Wells Fargo, found... More >>


5 tips to help teens master their money
(BPT) - For most teens, high school is an exciting time, one that offers the opportunity to set their own path and make some of their own decisions. However, with this added independence comes additional responsibility, especially regarding money.Today teens are spending $260 billion a year in the ... More >>


Spring cleaning to make money: Don't toss these 5 hidden sources of extra cash
(BPT) - Before we soak up the summer sun, we need to think about spring cleaning. As you clear out your closets and drawers, be on the lookout for these five often overlooked sources of money:1) Gift Cards: About $1 billion in gift cards goes unused each year, so instead of digging change out of yo... More >>


How PMI can make your dream of home sweet home a reality
(BPT) - In the 2017 housing market, those who choose to pursue the dream of owning a home face several important decisions, such as how much to put toward a down payment. Twenty percent down is typically recommended by most lenders.While 20 percent is not a requirement, paying less can have a big i... More >>


Get extra money all year: Tips to adjust your tax withholdings
(BPT) - Every year, nearly eight out of 10 taxpayers receive a federal tax refund. Many of them are more than happy to see that “extra” money drop into their bank accounts. In fact, according to a recent TaxAct survey, 61 percent of tax filers said they’d rather receive a big refu... More >>


6 tips for decoding college financial aid award letters
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Control mobile data costs by connecting to Wi-Fi at home
(BPT) - American's use of computers has shifted dramatically in the last five years. In the past, desktop computers were the main tools for accessing the Internet and communicating with others. Today, mobile devices like smartphones and tablets are taking over.The use of mobile devices has skyrocke... More >>


Balance is the key to help build financial confidence [Infographic]
(BPT) - Taking small financial steps today can help prepare you for a more confident tomorrow. Learn how to get started with these tips for tackling your biggest financial concerns.Save... More >>


5 mistakes to avoid when buying your first home
(BPT) - Buying your first home is comparable to the first time you ride a bike. You can learn how it works from your parents and observe it from a distance, but you really won’t know the ins and outs until you sit down on the bicycle and start riding.Like most beginners, first-time homebuyers... More >>


The data dilemma: How to choose a monthly plan
(BPT) - How much data do you really need on your monthly cellular plan? Buy too much and you’re simply wasting money. Buy too little and you could end up socked with overage fees, or find your data speeds slowed significantly.The average U.S. wireless customer consumes about 1.8 gigabytes (GB... More >>


Tips for paying less in taxes all year long
(BPT) - American taxpayers file roughly 140 million tax returns annually, according to the IRS. Of those, just 14 percent are the simplest type of form, the 1040EZ. In fact, all the 1040EZs, 1040s and 1040As filed - the least complex types of returns that you should, in theory, be able to do for yo... More >>


The lowdown on leasing
(BPT) - If you’re in the market for a new car, you might be thinking about leasing. After all, it seems very attractive on the surface — so attractive that leases accounted for one-third of all vehicles sales nationally in 2016. Taking a closer look though, you may be surprised to see t... More >>




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