Financial Planning

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Stay-at-Home Parents Need Life Insurance Too

Stay-at-home parents deserve a great big round of applause. From chauffeur to cook, counselor to bookkeeper, they wear many hats. The 16th annual Mom Salary Survey by Salary.com showed moms could hold 20 titles and work more than 90 hours a week as a stay-at-home spouse. While a stay-at-home parent doesn’t see a paycheck roll in each month, their financial contribution to the family is significant. Salary.com calculated the typical stay-at-home mom in the U.S. would earn a salary of $143,102. A handy calculator makes it easy for anyone to determine their stay-at-home paycheck. While Salary.com’s survey may have focused on…

Debit Card or Credit Card: Which is Right for You?

Paying with plastic is par for the course these days, even for small purchases. The question is, which kind of plastic is best? People tend to have strong opinions about debit versus credit cards. Debit card diehards are the modern-day version of cash-only consumers. They won’t spend what they don’t have and using a debit card eliminates any temptation to overspend. However, there are plenty of people who could pay with debit but opt for credit cards instead. Often, it’s because they are earning cash back or racking up points. We all know at least one frequent-flyer fanatic who takes…

College and Insurance: Insurance Entrance Exam for Kids on College Campuses

If you have a child living away at college, you’ve probably been through an extensive checklist in getting him or her prepared and moved to campus for the fall semester. Amid the flurry of planning and packing, have you thought about college and insurance? Although still your dependent, your child living away from home may have additional insurance needs to protect their belongings and their well-being. Consider these areas: Auto Insurance Fewer than half of college students have cars on campus, so if your child doesn’t have wheels, let your carrier know. Your student may be eligible for a “distant…

Take Steps Today to Ensure Your Life Insurance Pays Off

If you have a life insurance policy, you have already taken the first positive step toward protecting your loved ones’ financial futures. September is Life Insurance Awareness Month and the ideal time to take the next steps to ensure that you not only have adequate coverage but that your good intentions will be carried out too. Here are key points you need to know about how to manage life insurance policies and about how insurance is paid out: Check Your Records and Update as Needed Maybe you took out the policy many years ago, during which time your beneficiaries have…

How to Be a Record-Keeping Rock Star

Keeping track of old tax returns and sorting through receipts may sound about as exciting as organizing your sock drawer. There’s no immediate payoff to most financial record keeping, so it’s easy to put it off until another day. Or another year. Plus, record keeping is a chore that can feel even more confusing and time-consuming now that so much information is stored electronically. Raise the Stakes Imagine a new reality TV show where you can win big cash and prizes if you can produce financial and personal documents.   The prize patrol has knocked at your door without warning.…

7 Bad Money Habits That Can Ruin Your Finances

Habits can make or break our personal finance success. While good habits can help you build savings and live without financial stress, bad money habits can turn into a downward spiral of debt, fees and struggles. Making some small adjustments to your financial habits is easier than you may realize. Break these seven bad money habits to put yourself on track to a happy financial life. Making Only the Minimum Payment When you get a loan statement in the mail, whether it is from a credit card, mortgage or student loan, you can quickly find your minimum payment for the…

Family CFO Monthly Money Management To-Do List

Managing your family’s finances is a bigger job than many people realize. A family’s finances work similar to a small business. You have cash flowing in and out, savings and investments, credit cards and debt, bills to pay, and people relying on you for their basics needs. Whether you run your finances like a Fortune 500 company or a mom and pop system, follow these steps to ensure you are fulfilling your family Chief Financial Officer duties each month. Review Your Family Income Statement In personal finance, there is a simple saying to help you manage your income and expenses…

5 Important Money Lessons From Video Games

We get it. Personal finance can be a dry topic but financial savvy is important in achieving financial independence.  So if you are ready for a long nap when the talk of money or personal finance arises, you’ll be thrilled to know that video games have added an element of adventure and action to your personal accounting activities. What types of finance lessons can be learned from games today?  Lessons on how to manage money, business strategy, and other life and personal finance are just a few examples. So, the next time you pick up a video game for your…

The Starter Guide: Truths About Financial Advisors Everyone Should Know

As your finances become more complicated over time, it is common to need a little extra help managing your monthly cash flow, tending to various investments, and preparing for retirement. Schools do not teach about money, so there is no surprise that people just like you need regular help managing their money. If you think finding a financial advisor might be right for you, follow this guide to understand the many aspects of this important decision. Interview Several Financial Advisors At the start, you should plan to speak with multiple advisors before you pick the right one. You shouldn’t blindly…

Financial Freedom: 4 Strategies to Be Debt Free in 2017

Will this be the year you experience debt freedom?  If you have debt, you probably made a New Year’s Resolution this year to work hard to get your debt under control. Think how wonderful it will be.  No more calls from creditors. Debt comes in many shapes and sizes so whether your debt is from credit cards, student loans, or anything else, these 4 strategies will help you tackle your debt and get it controlled once and for all. The Debt Avalanche The best way to get out of debt, according to math, is a strategy known as the “debt…

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