Lifestyle

Choosing the Right Medicare Coverage

,As you approach age 65, Medicare is on your radar. Medical expenses are one of the biggest costs you’ll face. Making a smart decision about Medicare coverage can do a lot for your health and your wealth. To get started, you will want to make sure you are choosing the right coverage option and considering any extra coverage you may need. But how do you enroll in the plan that keeps you covered at a price point that fits your budget? These steps will show you how to do exactly that. Choosing Between Original Medicare or Medicare Advantage The alphabet has never seemed so confusing as it does when most people start looking at Medicare options for the first time. Think of your coverage options as Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage to help you pick the option that is best for you. Original Medicare is Medicare Part A and Part…

5 Personal Finance Milestones for Your 40s

Competing priorities for your time and money is always at the forefront no matter your age but it’s especially evident in your 40s. With so many to-dos, you might find yourself wondering where to focus and what should be at the top of the list. This post includes the top five personal finance milestones to hit in your 40s to keep you on track for a great financial future. Get in a Stride With Your Income In your 40s, you most likely have a respectable decade or two behind you in your work and you are at an established point in your career. Unless you’ve changed career paths, you may be in a comfortable place with your income. It’s great if you don’t have to worry about where your next check is coming from or how you will pay bills. If you live paycheck to paycheck, take a hard look…

What You Need to Know About Tiny Houses and Insurance

More than a decade ago, a new movement began. One that emphasizes the philosophies of less is more, sustainability and financial freedom. The tiny house movement. Today you’ll find numerous TV shows, countless blogs and even a magazine dedicated to tiny house living. But even with its notoriety, living tiny is still a relatively new industry. Regulators, home insurers and builders continue to navigate the space. If you’re considering joining the tiny house movement, keep these considerations in mind. Goals and Primary Use What’s the motivation behind your desire to go tiny? Are you looking to right-size, live sustainably or eliminate debt? People have many reasons for living in a tiny house. Determining yours will help you stay on track as you go through the building process. Also consider the primary use of your new home. Will it serve mainly as a vacation house for your family, a VRBO rented to…

You, Too, Can Live Like the Rich and Famous

If you’ve ever bought a Powerball lottery ticket and fantasized about how your life would be fabulous if only you would win, it may be comforting to know that some of the super-rich live pretty much the way you live right now. At least some of the time. Multi-millionaires and billionaires obviously have the capital to do whatever they want, wherever they want, as often as they want. Many, however, opt to live modestly, focusing on growing their businesses and maintaining their wealth instead of how to spend their money. Some ultra-rich celebrities shop at Walmart, Target and the Dollar Store, eat at McDonald’s, style their own hair, prepare their own meals, drive old cars, shop for cheap coach class travel and live in the same modest house they’ve owned for decades. A few well-documented examples: Warren Buffett, chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway (net worth $82.3 billion) lives in…

Outsourcing Home Maintenance: Costs and Benefits

With a rise in services such as Angie’s List, Thumbtack and Zaarly, today you can outsource just about any home maintenance task. But should you? Before picking up the phone and shelling out the cash for maintenance help, consider the pros and cons of outsourcing home maintenance versus doing it yourself. You may find the cost is completely worth it. Or, you may decide to save instead. If you currently pay for a home maintenance service you’re not alone. A recent Bankrate survey found more than three in five homeowners use at least one recurring home maintenance provider. These services don’t come cheap. Homeowners pay an average of $2,000 a year for maintenance services, according to the Bankrate survey. Zillow estimates the average is closer to $3,000. This is based on its review of the six most common projects hired for on Thumbtack. These services include “carpet cleaning, yard work,…

10 Thoughts About Money From Favorite TV and Movie Dads

For better or for worse, many of our attitudes about money come from our parents. And no matter their financial situation, profession, age, or number of kids, dads around the world have managed to spout the same cliché “dad-isms” about money to their families: “Money doesn’t grow on trees.” “Do you think I’m made of money?” “The barcode isn’t scanning? I think that means it’s free!” “You get what you pay for.” “Dad, I’m broke.” “Hi Broke, I’m Dad!” Of course, the luckiest of us have gotten some real pearls of financial wisdom passed down from our fathers … and maybe the rest of us have gotten a real-life example of what not to do that we carry with us throughout our lives. In honor of Father’s Day, we’ve rounded up 10 thoughts about money from some of our favorite TV and movie dads, and extrapolated ways that you can…

7 Ways to Save Big, Spend Little This Summer

Summer is here and the kids are out of school, leaving parents to find solutions to that age-old kid complaint — “I’m bored.” Keeping everyone occupied and happy can often cause a drain on the budget. But, it doesn’t have to. These seven tips for budget-friendly summer activities will help you save big, spend less and keep the kiddos engaged this summer. Discover Free and Discounted Activities at Local Businesses Local parenting magazines, blogs and Facebook groups are a great way to find free and cheap things to do with your kiddos this summer. Many home improvement and craft stores offer free or cheap workshops for kids. Libraries provide great reading programs, and you may find music and reading hours at your local toy store. Consider an Annual/Summer Pass for Local Attractions You Visit Often Depending on how often you plan to visit local attractions, such as the zoo, amusement…

Updates For Your Home to Stay in it Forever

Your home is perfect for you. You love the neighborhood, the yard, the space. It’s where your kids grew up and where your grandkids come to play. You can’t imagine yourself living anywhere else. While many people think they have to leave their homes behind as they get older, aging in place is a growing trend in the home improvement world. Many families make modifications and updates to their home, allowing them to age in place by following the basic principles of Universal Design. Some updates require more extensive planning and come with a hefty cost. But a surprisingly number of updates can be made in a manner that is both time- and cost-efficient. Following these tips will allow you to make updates to your house so you can age in place. Change your Hardware Swapping out door knobs for levers and opting for thicker handles instead of knobs as…

10 Money Tips for New Grads

If you’re a new grad who’s feeling a little exhilarated, a little worn out and a little terrified about finding a job that pays the bills … take a deep breath. The great thing about this stage of your life is that while you have room to take your time, make mistakes and figure out what you want, you are also young enough to do a few key things right that will set you ahead of the crowd for years to come. Especially when it comes to money. Looking for financial advice after graduation? Here are ten tips to keep in mind: Follow Your Dreams … but Don’t Wait Around for Your Dream Job You’re smart, enthusiastic and ready to change the world – surely an employer will see that and offer you a job that pays well, has lots of vacation time and lets you make big decisions. Right?…

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