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Don’t Let a Holiday Debt Hangover Linger for Months

Guest Blogger: Cait Klein, NerdWalletSmall-arrow-for-disclosure

If you got carried away this year with the holiday spending, you likely are in the throes of a financial hangover. This nasty ailment can cause headaches and last for months, if not longer. But there is a cure. Here are five steps to get over it:

1.  Take a look in the mirror: The first step is facing the facts—you can’t simply look the other way when it comes to holiday debt


Helping Your Kids Budget

Guest Blogger: Roberta Pescow, NerdWallet Small-arrow-for-disclosure

Summertime provides a nice break for children as they enjoy time off from school just being kids. However, all that free time focused on fun can lead to impulse spending if the youngsters haven’t been taught good money sense.  Here are a few ways to give your future heirs some budgeting chops this summer:

Allowances

Young children can truly benefit from a weekly allowance and the power to make their own financial decisions. Sit down with your child and encourage them to identify ways to earn…


Start Saving NOW for Your Summer Vacation

Guest Blogger: Cait Klein, NerdWalletSmall-arrow-for-disclosure

It’s always summer somewhere in the world, so don’t wait to start putting aside cash to finance your next warm-weather trip. Here are five ways to ensure your finances are healthy enough to handle a vacation.

Budget. Planning the perfect vacation is fun, but thinking about the financial side of things can be a drag, especially if you haven’t saved enough. Whether you’re venturing overseas or just enjoying a simpler “staycation” adventure, a budget is necessary to stay on the path to a specific goal. Online…


Balancing Student Loan Debt and Retirement Savings

Student loans may have gotten you through college, but they can be a heavy burden to carry into the adult world. About seven in 10 graduates leave college with loan debt along with their diplomas — and the average amount owed in 2014 was just under $29,000. Maybe you’re feeling pressured to pay off your loan as fast as possible and postpone retirement planning for later. Actually, though, when you crunch the numbers, it may make sense to rethink your priorities.

Why worry about retirement now?

Retirement might seem far off, however, when you consider that it may last…


How Much Should 20-Somethings Save?

Your 20s may seem like an odd time to think of retirement, but it’s actually the perfect moment to start planning for your later years. That’s because the earlier you start saving, the more time your money has to grow.

Savers who begin setting aside 10% of their earnings at 25, for example, could amass significantly more by retirement age than those who wait just five years to start saving. You can use online calculators to see how much can save by the time you reach retirement if you starting investing now.

Building a nest egg on a starter salary…


Tips for Online Shopping Safely

Guest Blogger: Spencer Tierney, NerdWalletSmall-arrow-for-disclosure

The holidays can be a time to give, but there are some things — like passwords — you don’t want to give out. Online shopping fraud is an ever-present threat, especially around this time of year. To protect yourself, follow these tips:

Keep passwords under wraps

Avoid telling anyone your passwords or sharing sensitive information online. If it’s been a year or longer since you’ve changed up passwords, make new onesSmall-arrow-for-disclosure with a…


Mistakes to Avoid During 401(k) and IRA Rollovers

Guest Blogger: NerdWallet

If you have a retirement plan from a previous job or an individual retirement account, there are ways to move the funds without getting penalized by the Internal Revenue Service. These transfers, or “rollovers,” can be directed through a plan administrator or financial institution, but you can also make the switch too. If you do it yourself, be careful to avoid any of the following mistakes that can lead to tax penalties.

Missing the 60-day cutoff

If distributions from a retirement fund are paid directly to you, the Internal Revenue Service gives you 60 days…


Put Your Home’s Equity to Work

Guest Blogger: Roberta Pescow, NerdWalletSmall-arrow-for-disclosure

Wishing you could make improvements to your house but short on the necessary cash? The way to transform those dreams into reality may be right under your nose. Discover how to tap into the value of your home in a way that suits your needs and budget.

Home Equity Financing 101

Home equity financing offers some of the lowest interest rates available, and you can use the money however you want. As an added benefit, you may be able to deduct…


Year-End Paper Purge: Shred vs. Keep

Guest blogger: Elizabeth Renter, NerdWalletSmall-arrow-for-disclosure

The end of the year is a good time to organize important papers and records, purging those that are just taking up space and filing away those you may still need. Knowing what to save and what to toss can help keep you organized and make managing your finances easier.

Technology has made it easy to pull up records of bills, bank statements and loan payment histories. While this means you don’t need to hold onto some papers as long as you once did,…


Don’t Get Tricked By These Financial Scares!

Guest blogger: Tony Armstrong, NerdWalletSmall-arrow-for-disclosure

In honor of Halloween, millions of people will be handing out candy to masked trick-or-treaters. But far spookier than those little ghosts and goblins on the doorstep are the financial demons that plague many Americans and threaten their bank accounts.

Don’t get tricked by these common financial scares:

Towering credit card debt
Credit card debt haunts many American families: The average debt-carrying household has about $15,600 of it. Shouldering that much debt isn’t only hard on your psyche; it also hurts your credit score, leading to…

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