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home : life : finance August 28, 2014

Ready for today but what about tomorrow? [Infographic]
(BPT) - Today many women are taking control of their household finances. Yet, they are less concerned about their financial security than they have been in the past and most do not feel prepared to make wise financial decisions. ... Read More


How to maximize your tax benefits from charitable gifts
(BPT) - You answer calls to support your alma mater, the local animal shelter and the American Red Cross with gifts of money and volunteer time. And after cleaning out the closets, dressers, kitchen cabinets and garage, you take a trunk load of donations to the thrift store.You know your gifts of c... Read More


Tax return check has arrived, so buy the shoes
(BPT) - Your tax return check has arrived in the mail. Now you’ll finally pay off that credit card or add the extra cash to your savings for a rainy day. Or maybe you’ll blow your new fortune on a pair of designer shoes.Perhaps it’s time you instead considered a pair of synthetic ... Read More


Latest wrinkle on scams: Crooks pose as member of the military
(BPT) - Do you believe members of the military contribute a great deal to society? You’re not alone; a 2013 Pew Research Center opinion poll found that Americans of all ages and walks of life placed military service at the top of the list of 10 professions that do the most good. Unfortunately... Read More


Growing your business: Tips for applying for small business loans
(BPT) - The outlook for small business is up with many business owners feeling good about the future of the economy, their financial positions and their plans for growth, according to Capital One’s Spark Business Barometer. But for many business owners looking to secure capital to either star... Read More


Going back to school? Tips to choose the right degree
(BPT) - For many, earning a college degree opened the door to the working world; it may have even been instrumental in landing your current job. But are you applying what you learned in college to your current career field? A recent survey suggests this might not be the case.Only 35 percent of coll... Read More


Overlooking insurance during your job search could cost you
(BPT) - An improving economy has many people entering the job market and looking for new employment opportunities. But if job seekers are not insurance-smart in their search, they may end up in worse financial shape than they were in their previous role.Earning a higher salary is the primary goal f... Read More


Don't go back to college broke
(BPT) - Roughly half of all college students find summer employment, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. While there are no statistics for how much money those in the lucky half were able to successfully save, it’s safe to say that for a good portion of millennials, spending and summ... Read More


Teach your kids the value of money
(BPT) - Teaching your kids to be financially savvy could help them to be financially confident and successful in the future. As credit card debt and low retirement savings continue to frustrate many Americans, you can help your kids steer clear of these and other financial pitfalls by talking to th... Read More


Easy ways to make senior living affordable
(BPT) - Kathy Hesselgrave’s 90-year-old mother’s health declined to the point where she was no longer able to live in her home by herself. Because her mother needed help cooking and taking her medication, Hesselgrave found herself taking care of her mom, splitting the days and nights wi... Read More


Employee engagement is the secret for small businesses to stay productive and make money
(BPT) - One of the biggest worries for a small business owner is training and investing in quality employees and then losing them to a larger company – potentially a competitor – that might be able to offer larger salaries or better benefits.It might look like a no-win scenario for a sm... Read More


With drought across the country, you can do your part to conserve water
(BPT) - When you turn on the water faucet in your kitchen, do you think about the water that goes down the drain without being used in any way? Or have you wondered how you might be able to reduce your water bill? Having good water sense can help answer these questions and more.What does it mean fo... Read More


Bridging the disability insurance gap
(BPT) - For most people, the prospect of losing income due to injury or disability is a frightening one, but in reality, few believe it is a challenge they will ever personally face. Only 28 percent of employees feel confident in their ability to replace earnings in the event of a disability, accor... Read More


New coaching program helps people living with multiple sclerosis improve financial wellness
(BPT) - Suzanne is a Las Vegas resident who spent nearly three decades fundraising for museums and universities until a multiple sclerosis (MS) diagnosis in July of 2012 changed her life. Now MS keeps her from working full-time."Following my diagnosis my self-esteem took a hit and fear came into pl... Read More


Don't let college debt drag you down
(BPT) - With each passing year, student loan debt is digging a deeper hole for more young Americans. Over a nine-year period, the average student loan balance among 25-year-olds has grown 91 percent, from $10,649 in 2003 to $20,326 in 2012. More than 38 million Americans have outstanding debt amoun... Read More


Which life insurance do you need at each stage of your life?
(BPT) - Many of life’s different stages offer challenges and rewards – whether you’re starting out on your own, raising a family, focusing on your career or preparing for a rewarding retirement. However, while each life stage is unique, making sure your loved ones are cared for fi... Read More


Establishing a 401(k) at your small business is easier than you think - and helps employees save for the long-term
(BPT) - Over the next 16 years, 10,000 people will turn 65 every day. Social Security alone may not be enough to provide an adequate retirement. Every day you hear about the lack of retirement savings and how ill-prepared many Americans are to meet their spending needs during retirement. Many remed... Read More


Growing up financially smart: prepaid cards provide college students security, convenience
(BPT) - This fall, college students around the country will take their first steps toward financial independence. For many young adults, the college years are the first time they are responsible for managing and budgeting their money. With a combination of funds from jobs, their families and studen... Read More


Keep cool this summer while saving money
(BPT) - As summer temperatures rise, so can your energy and utility bills. Hotter weather can translate into higher costs if your home isn’t operating efficiently while working to keep you cool and comfortable. Yet there’s no need to swelter in the summer heat. There are simple thi... Read More


5 vital questions to ask your financial professional
(BPT) - When was the last time you met with a financial professional? Would you be more likely to keep those appointments if you knew some specific questions to ask? These meetings provide an important opportunity for you to ensure your strategy is still on track and ensure your family and finances... Read More


Have you gone mobile with your money? Survey says most Americans have
(BPT) - Smartphones have become an essential part of everyday life; from texting and email to social media, Americans rely heavily on their mobile devices. If your mobile phone was taken away, how long could you survive without it?The answer may surprise you: nearly half (47 percent) of U.S. consum... Read More


Brown bagging potentially leads to $1 million retirement nest egg
(BPT) - Here’s a $1 million idea: making breakfast and lunch at home every day instead of dining out can potentially yield seven figures in retirement savings.A 25-year-old who eats breakfast at home and bags her lunch can save an extra $10 a day. Invested in a retirement account earning an 8... Read More


Worried about data breach risks? What you can do to help protect yourself
(BPT) - For many Americans, recent high-profile retail data breaches have been a wake-up call. Even those who never did business with the breached retailers might have found themselves wondering what they can or should do about data breach risks. While you can’t prevent a breach from occurrin... Read More


10 ways you're throwing money away daily
  (BPT) - How savvy are you about saving money? Even some of the best budget planners can fall for these seemingly small daily expenses, but with a few simple changes, you could be on your way to big savings!Check out 10 ways people throw away money every day – and little swaps you ... Read More


How to find $500 in energy savings in 5 rooms
(BPT) - With the demand for electricity and natural gas rising, right along with energy costs, American homeowners can easily spend hundreds of dollars a month on utility bills.“From air conditioning larger homes to powering today’s high-tech electronics, we are using more energy than e... Read More


The self-employment surge and how professionals can best prepare
(BPT) - One in two American workers are projected to be self-employed by 2020, according to MBO Partners. While the shifting economy has surely pushed some people into independent work, many have chosen it. Career goals for contemporary professionals are changing and given how quickly this trend is... Read More


The real cost of delaying retirement savings will shock you
(BPT) - Recent graduates have a lot on their minds: moving, finding a job and the looming repayment of school loans. Retirement is typically low on the list of priorities, but ignoring the issue entirely can literally cost young professionals hundreds of thousands of dollars.“It’s diffi... Read More


Getting hitched at home? Things you should think about first
(BPT) - Deciding to get married is one of the biggest and most important decisions many people will ever make. According to The Knot and WeddingChannel.com, the average wedding costing more than $28,000 - the cost of a new car or a down payment on a home, so your next biggest decision may be figuri... Read More


Planning for your 20-year vacation
(BPT) - Are you ready to be on vacation for 20 or 30 years?That’s what planning for retirement compares to for many people as life spans have increased dramatically over the past few decades. A male who celebrates his 65th birthday today can expect to live until age 84 on average, according t... Read More


Caught in a data breach? How to reclaim control of your credit and identity
(BPT) - By the end of the first quarter 2014, more than 200 data breaches compromised millions of consumer records, according to the Identity Theft Resource Center, which keeps track of reported data breaches. Stunned? Data breach stats are even more staggering if you’re among the millions of... Read More


Student loan aftermath: educating graduates on the importance of credit scores
(BPT) - This is a special time of year. Across the nation, graduates are on the horizon of new careers and building their own lives.While this is an exciting stage in life, it is a concerning time as well. Many students are graduating with student loan debt, and research shows that Millennials (age... Read More


Shopping for a new vehicle? 5 questions to ask yourself before signing on the dotted line
(BPT) - It’s that time again - time to buy a new car. Maybe you’re excited because you’ve been dreaming of getting new wheels for a long time now. Or maybe you’re nervous; buying a car is a big financial commitment and you want to make sure you do your homework. If you fall ... Read More


How to recognize the signs of elder financial abuse
(BPT) - Financial abuse of the elderly is on the rise and not only is it getting worse, but for every reported case of elder financial exploitation, 43 others go unrecognized.The annual financial loss for victims of elder abuse was estimated at $2.9 billion in 2010, up 12 percent over 2008, accordi... Read More


When freedom rings: top tips to help launch your own business
(BPT) - With summer bringing the celebration of our country’s freedom and a bit more flexibility in our hectic schedules, it’s also a time to reflect on the American dream: life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. For many Americans, that means seeking success and prosperity by build... Read More


How to build your nest egg and ensure it lasts throughout retirement
(BPT) - As you approach retirement, are you feeling good about your finances? Kudos to you if you feel comfortable with the amount you’ve saved. Now it’s time to start thinking about how you will manage your savings so it provides you with income throughout your retirement years.“... Read More


Be your own health advocate to live well and save money with Medicare
(BPT) - When you think about health care, doctors and hospitals often come to mind, but it’s important to remember that the person staring back at you in the mirror may be your greatest health advocate. After all, no one knows your body or mind like you do. This is particularly important for ... Read More


Spend smart and score brilliantly: Improve your credit score with these credit card best practices
(BPT) - One of the questions most often asked about credit cards is how they can impact your credit score. With so many different types of credit cards now available, it’s no wonder consumers have lots of questions.Here are five credit card best practices from VantageScore Solutions, the comp... Read More


Stress-free back-to-school shopping tips for parents of teens
(BPT) - Back-to-school shopping with a teenager can be harrowing for both parent and child. Parents must balance the function and fashion of required supplies to make returning to school fun, yet still within budget. With parents of teens spending $133.40 on average for back-to-school supplies per ... Read More


It's never too early to start teens on a budget
(BPT) - At some point, everyone will have to learn how to live on a budget, whether it’s at home, at work or with a nonprofit organization. For teenagers with a limited income and plenty of interests that cost money, learning to manage a budget can never come too early.Money management is a n... Read More


Last-minute shopping tips for back-to-school season that won't break the bank
(BPT) - If you enjoyed every minute of your summer vacation or you were completely booked with fun activities, you might have some last-minute back-to-school shopping left to do before the bell rings this fall. If you are a little behind in checking all of your kids’ school supplies off the s... Read More


Young adults are getting serious about money sooner than you think
(BPT) - More evidence has emerged that parents are doing a better job teaching kids about money, and young adults are getting better at managing it.For instance, the majority of millennials are investing for retirement by the age of 24, according to the Spring 2014 Merrill Edge Report. This is in s... Read More


Home renovation starts with good planning and good insurance
(BPT) - The United States is a country of renovators and remodelers, judging from the steady growth of home improvement projects across the nation in recent years.People are remodeling their homes at historically high rates, according to the National Association of Homebuilders. Many of these proje... Read More


Stop loan scammers and bogus bill collectors with these tips
(BPT) - In the United States, federal and state consumer collection laws forbid debt collectors from using unfair, deceptive, and abusive means to collect debt. Unfortunately, that fact doesn’t stop scammers from using threats of arrest and jail time to coerce victims into paying bogus bills ... Read More


Money-saving tips so you can earn your degree without going into debt
(BPT) - If you’ve just finished high school and you’re headed to college, or if you’re an adult student looking to go back to school, chances are you’ve thought about student debt. You’re not alone.The epidemic of student debt is taking higher education by storm. In 20... Read More


Wedding smarts: Before the 'I do's' remember these important insurance to do's
(BPT) - Congratulations, you're engaged. Once the excitement of sharing the news with your loved ones and Facebook friends dies down, there are several important issues to consider. This includes building your guest list, setting a budget, picking a venue, DJ versus band and other to do’... Read More



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