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Money

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Any consumer who has tried to borrow money, apply for credit or even rent an apartment most likely understands the importance of a good credit score. There is so much emphasis on this three digit number that entire talk shows, books and even products for credit repair are centered around it. While it is in fact true that a good credit score will get you approved for more lines of credit with more favorable terms…

One of the questions that many people ask when they are looking for insurance coverage is whether or not they need coverage for protection against uninsured drivers. Because many drivers are uninsured — in spite of laws that require car insurance — it can help in some cases to make sure that you get uninsured motorist coverage. What is Uninsured Motorist Coverage? This is coverage that helps pay for injuries you sustain if an uninsured…

Many of us have come to rely on debit cards. They are convenient methods of payment, working like credit cards — and accepted where credit cards are used. You can swipe your debit card quickly and easily, without worrying about paying interest; your money comes right out of your checking. And now, banks are betting on the fact that you will want to keep the convenience of debit cards. Wells Fargo is test out monthly…

I hate to admit it, but it’s been awhile since I’ve checked my credit report. Normally, I check my credit report three or four times a year. However, I’ve been a little lax recently. I don’t need new credit, and I’ve just not thought about it much. I’m about to rectify that, though. It’s important to check your credit report regularly. Here are 3 reasons to keep track of what’s in your credit file: 1.…

The student loan industry is huge now. Indeed, outstanding student loan debt now exceeds outstanding credit card debt in the U.S. As you get ready for college this fall, it’s a good idea to think about your college funding options, and consider your financing. If you have a child that is still a few years away from college, it’s never too early to start saving. Here are some ways to avoid student loans: Save up:…

One of the more worrying issues related to your money is how to protect your assets. During time so economic recession and market turmoil, we tend to pull back a little bit and consider how to best protect our money and remain financially solvent. One way that you can protect your assets is to make sure that you have adequate insurance coverage. How Does Insurance Help You? When we think of insurance, many of us…

Last Friday evening, S&P downgraded the U.S. credit rating. This marks the first time that the U.S. has seen its sterling rating tarnished. Since then, the stock market has been quite volatile, with investors being taken on a wild ride. However, the stock market isn’t the only thing that might be affected by the credit downgrade. Mortgage rates might soon be affected. If Treasuries Rise, Mortgage Rates May Rise, Too One of the possible effects…

Many of us have a goal to pay down debt and to increase the amount of money that we save. The only issue that seems to get in the way is a lack of resources. What happens is you don’t feel like you have enough money to pay down your debt faster or improve your savings rate? When it comes right down to it, there is only so much cutting you can do. There are…

It is understandable that you may worry from time to time about how you and your family would cope financially if you were unable to work due to an illness. Cheap critical cover may offer a solution, which could put your mind at rest. A critical illness insurance policy may provide you with a tax free lump sum if you are diagnosed with a serious or life threatening illness. This means that if you are…

One of the questions we sometimes have to ask ourselves is this: Is it sometimes worth it to pay a little more? The issue of the Netflix price increase has me thinking about when it might be worth your while to pay a little extra. For instance, if the Netflix price increase will allow the company to expand its streamed offerings, then I think that the higher price is well worth it. There are other…

Because food is a necessity for life, you will always be required to purchase it. This can be discouraging as food prices rise, and as you try to keep your costs down. If you have an already tight budget, rising food prices can present an especial challenge. Here are 3 tips for saving money on food: 1. Grow Your Own One of the easiest ways to save money on food is to grow your own.…

One of the biggest challenges that many people have is setting money aside in some sort of savings account. Getting motivated to save your money can be difficult — especially if you think that you don’t have enough income to set some of it aside. As you consider your financial situation, it is a good idea to make saving money a priority. Ideas for Starting a Savings Habit If you are having trouble developing a…

When choosing life insurance, many of us are tempted to purchase a huge amount of coverage. But if you are an average person, with an average income, do you really need $2 million in life insurance coverage? I know that some insurance agents would love for me to have even $1 million in coverage, but I don’t think that my family needs it, and I can think of other things I’d rather do with the…

One of the most common financial goals that many people have is paying down debt. Finding the money to pay down debt can be difficult, though. In order to be more effective as part of a debt pay down plan, you need to make some changes in the way you handle money. This way, you will be able to pay down your debt faster: Move Debt Up the Priority List The first thing you need…

One of the realities of life is that college costs more and more. The rise of student loans to pay for college has made college “affordable” for more people, and has facilitated an education bubble that allows the cost of tuition to keep rising. While you may need some student loans to help supplement an education, it can help to start saving money for college to reduce how much you end up borrowing. If you…

As you look for a home, shopping around and getting documents together for pre-approval, it is easy to lose sight of some of the costs involved with home ownership. There are costs associated with getting the mortgage, and then there are on-going costs that you have to be prepared to pay. While you are looking at how much home you can afford, and wondering if you are adhering to the 30% rule, don’t forget about…

Many of us don’t think much about the “silent” things that erode our wealth. Most of us tend to think about our spending habits when we are considering what has an impact on wealth erosion. However, it is important that you consider inflation, taxes and fees when you make plans for the future. Fees One of the most obvious ways that wealth is eroded is through fees. However, you might not always be aware of…

One of the items that has been in the financial news a lot lately is the effort to come to an agreement on caps to swipe fees on debit cards. While originally proposed at 12 cents, the new swipe fee announcement puts the fee at a base rate of 21 cents, with the ability to tack on a little extra for fraud protection. These new rules could already be heralding the end of free checking…

The amount of taxes we pay may change on an annual basis, depending on inflation and the addition or removal of various tax cuts. If you are trying to get an idea of what you’ll owe for taxes in 2011, or want to work on reducing the amount of taxes you owe, the following income tax bracket charts may help you. The numbers are based on adjusted income before deductions and other adjustments you may…

When you are ready to buy a home, you need to figure out how much you can borrow. Many sellers like to see that you have already been considered by a lender, and that you have been approved for an amount that will allow you to buy the home. Part of the process to qualify for a mortgage can include a pre-qualification or a pre-approval. Both of these actions can help you when it comes…