Just like assets can be sold, so can debts. It’s possible that your auto loan or mortgage could be sold by one lender to another. If your debt is in good standing, the terms and conditions of your agreement generally apply, but things relating to the servicing of your loan such as due dates and
By Sandra Parsons While Cardi B is topping the charts, “Card Cracking” is ruining some music fans’ lives. Rapper Young Ash and five others were recently indicted for running a card cracking ring that recruited accomplices through her Snapchat channel. Learn how card cracking works and how you can avoid falling victim to
Congratulations! You’re the proud parent of a newborn bundle of joy. Many things are swirling through your head right now, especially if this is your first child. Acquiring a Social Security Number (SSN) for your child is probably not near the top of your priority list, and it probably shouldn’t be – but don’t let
You probably comparison-shop for most of your purchases, especially the high-dollar ones. If you’re going to spend money on a new appliance or an automobile, you want to review options to make sure you’re getting the best deal. According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), there’s a big exception to this rule – mortgages.
When your credit score is down, it takes great effort to rebuild it. You have to take care to pay down your debts and get your finances in order. You may also have to change some of your spending habits to have the greatest impact. Consider these five spending habits that will retard your credit
You want to know exactly what you are getting when you make any large purchase, especially when you are buying a home – the largest purchase that many Americans will ever make in their life. That’s why a real estate disclosure statement is a fundamental part of any real estate transaction. By law, home sellers
Living the Dream Homeownership is one of the classic measures of “the American Dream.” According to a recent Bank of the West Millennial Study, over half of respondents (58%) say they’ve either attained the American Dream or that the American Dream is still attainable. A similar percentage (59%) says that owning a home is a
Getting your first credit card can be a liberating experience. You can enjoy the convenience of a simple swipe or tap, and you don’t have to worry about having cash for all your purchases. However, if you don’t use your card wisely, it’s easy to get into unpleasant credit situations that can have long-lasting effects.
If you are one of the fortunate few who have a defined benefit retirement plan, you have more predictability in your retirement income than most. You can calculate your combined pension benefits and any Social Security benefits that you have earned and have a clear idea of your annual income throughout retirement – assuming you
Homeowners may see less of a tax break this year, thanks to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA). Beginning with homes purchased after December 16, 2017, you can only deduct the interest incurred on $750,000 of mortgage debt on qualifying residences (primary homes and one second residence). Under prior law, the limit was $1
You’re in a cash-flow crunch again. An important bill is due, and you’ve earned the money to pay that bill – but it’s not payday yet. You’re on a two-week pay cycle and have to wait for another week or so before your money is available. What are your options? Ask a friend or relative
Credit freezes are one of the most powerful tools you have against fraudulent use of your identity. Unlike a fraud alert, which just requires that creditors take reasonable steps to verify your identity when a credit request is made in your name, a credit freeze stops creditors from accessing your report at all. If a
Did you realize that not all financial advisors are obligated to act in your best interest? Financial professionals are obligated to offer products and advice that are suitable for your needs, but not all of them are obligated to offer the best advice possible. Two standards govern financial advisors – the fiduciary standard and the
How much longer would you have to work beyond your full retirement age to equal an additional 1% retirement savings over the thirty years prior to your retirement? You might expect to work an extra year or two – but according to a recent study published in the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), you
You’ve probably moved at least once in your life and had to fill out the Change of Address form at the U.S. Postal Service (USPS). The USPS makes it easy to change your address or temporarily forward mail to a different address. Forms are available at your local post office, or you can make the
Retirement has finally arrived. You’re ready to start drawing on your retirement income sources. Enjoy this new phase of your life. Unfortunately, you haven’t been able to retire from taxes – and your taxes will enter a new phase as well. You don’t have an employer to hold out taxes on your salary anymore. You’re
Do you have enough cash to handle an unexpected emergency expense? According to a new survey from Bankrate.com, a significant number of Americans don’t have an emergency savings fund – and don’t see the lack of one as a problem. Bankrate found that almost one in four respondents has no emergency fund at all, and
How Low Can It Go? According to economic theory, low unemployment will lead to rising wages as employers compete for the small pool of qualified workers. Unemployment in America hit a historically low 3.8% in May 2018. Aside from a one-month dip to 3.8% in April 2000, the unemployment rate hasn’t been 3.8% or below
Prefer using debit cards over credit cards, but miss earning rewards? Some debit cards offer cash-back rewards – either as a straight points-based redemption program or as a perks-based program directed at purchases with specific merchants. You may have debit card cash-back benefits through a perks-based program and not even realize it. Cardlytics is
Do you plan to relocate when you retire? If so, where would you like to go? It’s easy to rattle off a favorite vacation destination as your preferred retirement location, but it’s far different when you are visiting a location instead of living there. Try keeping an open mind and evaluating multiple retirement locations and
Your kids are growing up fast. Soon, it will be time to have … the talk. No, not that one. We’re referring to the talk about responsible use of credit. If you don’t drive home the importance of good credit practices while your children are young, they’re more likely to learn about credit the hard
You want to buy a home and have the income to support a decent monthly payment – but you can’t save up enough money for a significant down payment. With home prices and interest rates rising, you’re afraid that you’ll be priced out of the market before you can save up a full down payment.
Do you consider a rewards program as an integral part of your credit card choice? According to a new study by finder.com, close to one-third of Americans use credit cards just to get the associated rewards. The finder survey suggests that approximately 71.7 million Americans (29.2% of the adult population) make credit card purchases just
Another Day, Another Breach Have we reached the point where Americans react to data breaches with a yawn? Given the constant stream of new attacks and the staggering number of accounts involved, that’s an understandable reaction. The sportswear retailer Adidas recently joined the list of companies successfully attacked by hackers. The size of the
Most people say they plan for retirement, but they are really planning for financial independence. The day you achieve financial independence is a great day – you have accumulated enough wealth to not have to work again, and will be able to retire whenever you choose. (We use the word “day” symbolically; as a practical
Homeownership remains a goal for most Americans. According to NerdWallet’s 2018 Home Buyer Report, 91% of respondents want to own at least one home during their lifetime. However, that same report shows eight concerns renters have regarding that goal. If you haven’t bought a home yet, see if they match your concerns. 1. Purchase Cost
A summer job is a great way for students to earn some extra money while building a resume for the future and learning new things about the working world. Typically, one of the hardest lessons for students to deal with is income tax. Working students may say, “Why is so much of my paycheck withheld?
A poor credit score makes your financial life difficult in a number of ways. You receive poorer interest rates and terms on credit cards, it’s harder to qualify for mortgages, and, “When it comes time to get insurance, maybe your insurance premiums will be a little more expensive because you have a low credit score,”
A New Avenue for State and Local Taxes Americans love shopping online, in large part because of lower prices. Online merchants offer lower prices because they have a lower overhead compared to traditional brick-and-mortar retailers – and they also enjoy a sales tax advantage. A 1992 Supreme Court decision prohibited states from requiring businesses to
Congratulations! Your shopping has paid off and you’ve finally found an excellent car at a reasonable price. Now, how do you plan to pay for it? Dealers will be happy to arrange financing for you. Simply fill out and sign a loan application, and the Finance and Insurance (F&I) manager will immediately begin searching