5 Shrewd Secrets from Women Who’ve Fixed Credit, Paid Debt and Made Fortunes

5 Shrewd Secrets from Women Who’ve Fixed Credit, Paid Debt and Made Fortunes

click photo for more information
5 Shrewd Secrets from Women Who’ve Fixed Credit, Paid Debt and Made Fortunes
Looking for some advice when it comes to managing your money? We have stories from a former Merrill Lynch executive, a mom of nine who overcame a job layoff and a college grad who was able to pay off $100,000 worth of debt — then start her own business. They share their tips and secrets for financial success. You can even start using some of their strategies right now. Secret No. 1: Women Should Invest Differently Than Men Traditional investing companies have never really considered the fact that women statistically get paid less, yet live longer. That’s why Sallie Krawcheck, the former head of Merrill Lynch designed an investing company for women called Ellevest. With Ellevest, you can start investing with as little as $1. Plus, when you sign up through The Penny Hoarder, you’ll get a $25 bonus in your Ellevest account.* When you sign up, Ellevest will build an investing plan just for you and your financial goals. It considers gender pay differences, any potential career breaks and overall lifespan. Even better? It invests your money in women-owned businesses. Thanks to Krawcheck, we can invest exactly for our needs and feel more confident in our financial future. Secret No. 2: Be an Advocate For Yourself (and Your Credit Score) It’s easy to pass your credit score off as some silly three-digit number — that’s what most of us did throughout our early twenties anyways. But what happens when you want to buy a car? Or a house? That seemingly arbitrary number starts to play a huge role in your life. And here’s the unfortunate fact: You can do everything right, but if your credit report has an error (one in five reports do), it could be holding you back — for no good reason. That’s why it’s important to keep an eye on things. Thankfully, a free website called Credit Sesame will give you your credit score for free and help you detect any errors on your report. If you find any, it will even help you dispute them. Salome Buitureria, a working mom in Louisiana, found a major error on her report — a supposed unpaid medical bill that had definitely been covered by Medicaid. Using Credit Sesame, Buitureria fixed the mistake and took additional steps to raise her credit score from 524 to nearly 700.**  Now? She’s focused on buying a home. It only takes about 90 seconds to sign up with Credit Sesame. Secret No. 3: You’re Not Stuck With Your Credit Card Debt Wanna know something? Even if you have loads of credit card debt right now, that doesn’t mean you’ll have it forever. Heck, that doesn’t even mean you’ll have it tomorrow. What? We’re serious. One of our favorite first steps in escaping credit card debt is to refinance it with a personal loan. It might sound counterintuitive — like you’re just moving your debt from your credit cards to a loan — but the truth is, this could lower your monthly payment, save you tons of money in interest over time, and allow you to pay off your debt faster.. If you’re not sure where to start looking, use a website called Fiona. It’ll match you with a low-interest loan (rates start at 3.84%). You can then use that loan to wipe out your credit card debt. Then you’re left with just one bill to pay every month. Pro Tip When shopping personal loans, look for interest rates lower than your credit cards’ and manageable monthly payments. Oh, and don’t take out more than need to pay off your credit cards. Fiona won’t make you stand in line or call a bank. And if you’re worried you won’t qualify, it’s free to check online. It takes just two minutes, and it could save you thousands of dollars. We chatted with one San Francisco resident who struggled to keep up with her credit card debt. She faced a minimum monthly payment of $274 plus $154 in monthly interest plus a $99 annual credit card fee. She said it felt like she was on a treadmill. She decided to refinance with a personal loan, which spared her from what would’ve been $14,000 in interest over time. Secret No. 4: You Can Leave Your Kids $1 Million for $5/Month If you have kids, you’ve probably worried about what’ll happen to them if something were to happen to you… For single mom Rebekah Pearsall, this was difficult to consider. “Since my son doesn’t have a biological father in his life, I wanted to make sure he was secure if something were to ever happen to me,” she said. That’s when she started looking into life insurance. Before you start thinking you don’t have the time or money for that, look into policies through a company called Bestow. It offers $1 million policies starting at only $5 a month. Your application shouldn’t take more than about five minutes. You can change or cancel your plan at any time. Plus, the security of knowing your family is taken care of is priceless. Pearsall had seen firsthand the benefits of life insurance; her childhood friend lost his dad and life insurance helped his family make it through that time financially. It takes only a few minutes to get a free quote. Secret No. 5: You Don’t Have to Have an MBA to Start a Business If you dream of starting a business, don’t let the fact that you don’t have a business degree from an Ivy League school hold you back. (Yeah, imposter syndrome is the worst.) We’ve talked to plenty of women who’ve successfully started businesses on their own. Here’s a story that really resonates with our frugal hearts: The Budget Mom. After graduating college, Kumiko Love had $100,000 worth of debt — student loans, credit cards and medical bills. All that good stuff. Still, she had trouble sticking to a budget. So she gave up. Then she started studying the psychology behind money and that gave her a renewed hope: She started viewing her situation through a positive lens. She combined several budgeting tactics and started logging her process through her blog, The Budget Mom. And guess what? Love is now debt free and she recently quit her full-time job to focus on her seven-figure business, The Budget Mom. *The Ellevest The Penny Hoarder promotional offer is valid for the first 1,000 new clients of Ellevest who enter through this designated landing page. Clients who enroll and fund their non-retirement account will receive $25 added to their highest priority goal in their Ellevest account. Clients who enroll and fund their retirement account will receive a $25 Amazon gift card which can be redeemed by visiting www.amazon.com. Please review Amazon.com Gift Card Terms and Conditions prior to redemption. Ellevest is not responsible for lost Amazon Gift Cards. Ellevest’s processing time for depositing $25 into a client’s Ellevest account or delivery of a $25 Amazon gift card may be up to 60 days. **Credit Sesame does not guarantee any of these results, and some may even see a decrease in their credit score. Any score improvement is the result of many factors, including paying bills on time, keeping credit balances low, avoiding unnecessary inquiries, appropriate financial planning and developing better credit habits. Carson Kohler (carson@thepennyhoarder.com) is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.
1
41

Comments

Write a comment

Is My Credit Frozen? What to Do If You’re Not Sure

click photo for more information
Is My Credit Frozen? What to Do If You’re Not Sure
For years, applying for credit has been a cinch, with approvals happening almost instantly. But now, if you’ve heeded expert advice and frozen your credit, there’s a new step: unfreeze your credit. If you apply for a loan or a credit card, forgetting your credit is frozen, your application likely won’t be approved. That’s because... Bev O'Shea is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: boshea@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @BeverlyOShea. The article Is My Credit Frozen? What to Do If You’re Not Sure originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
1
1

9 of the Hottest Products on Amazon Today

click photo for more information
9 of the Hottest Products on Amazon Today
Whether you’re an impulse shopper or just like to be on top of the latest trends, you need to check out Amazon’s “Movers & Shakers” lists. These are the hottest items on Amazon right now, based on how much their sales rank has jumped compared with 24 hours earlier. According to Amazon: “For example, if a music item has a current sales rank of 10, but was ranked 30... [...]
1
15

5 Things to Know About the Key Cashback Credit Card

click photo for more information
5 Things to Know About the Key Cashback Credit Card
The Key Cashback credit card, issued by KeyBank, has an annual fee of $0 and features an appealing 2% cash back on every purchase, an ongoing flat rate that’s hard to beat. But there are some catches for that high rate: You will earn it only under certain conditions, and if those conditions aren’t met, you’ll... Kimberly Palmer is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: kpalmer@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @kimberlypalmer. The article 5 Things to Know About the Key Cashback Credit Card originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
1
6

500 Credit Score: Good or Bad?

click photo for more information
500 Credit Score: Good or Bad?
A 500 credit score is considered bad credit. Your credit score determines whether you qualify for financial products, like credit cards and car loans, and what interest rate you might pay. In 2019, 4% of Americans had a score lower than 500, according to credit scoring company FICO. Here’s how a 500 credit score can affect your... Amrita Jayakumar is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: ajayakumar@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @ajbombay. The article 500 Credit Score: Good or Bad? originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
1
4

*HOT Clorox Wipes Deal | $10 Money Maker After Rebate!!

click photo for more information
*HOT Clorox Wipes Deal | $10 Money Maker After Rebate!!
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here. WHOA! If you’ve been needing to stock up on Clorox Wipes, this is a deal you don’t want to miss! Top Cash Back is offering a $14.65 rebate on any $11 or more Clorox Wipes purchased from Staples, making it FREE! But that’s not all! Right now when you sign up as a new member, you also get a $10 bonus! That means you’ll get back $24.65 when you purchase this slow cooker — which is a $10 money maker deal! Here’s how to get your FREE Clorox Wipes + Bonus $10: 1. Head here for the special Clorox Wipes offer and sign up for a new Top Cash Back account. 2. Spend at least $11 on Clorox Wipes. Select free in-store pickup at your local Staples to avoid shipping costs. 3. Within 21 days, your Top Cash Back account will be credited with $14.65 — so all you’ll pay is tax! Once your account is credited with the $14.65, you’ll immediately see the bonus $10 in your account, too! That means you should get $24.65 cash back total! 4. After you receive the $24.65 payment in your Top Cash Back account, you can choose to transfer it to your bank account or request a Paypal payment. This is for new TopCashBack members only. If you are already a member, you are allowed to sign up another adult in your household. This deal is valid through October 20, 2019 — or while supplies last. [...]
1
3

How to Finally Break Free from Anxiety & Stress

click photo for more information
How to Finally Break Free from Anxiety & Stress
Need some practical encouragement to move past anxiety, stress, and survival mode? Longing for life of more wholeness? Don’t miss this episode with Aundi Kolber! Missed previous episodes of The Crystal Paine show? You can listen to them here. Okay, I know I’ve said this before about other episodes, but I truly think today’s episode was one of my very favorite podcast recordings to date! Maybe it had something to do with the fact that Aundi Kolber is a therapist and I felt like I got a therapy session just by spending an hour with her?! 🙂 Listen in to the episode and you’ll see what I mean. Aundi has a gift of sharing so eloquently and yet also in such a heartfelt manner. She just exudes such peace and calmness, but also such profound wisdom and understanding of how we are wired. In this episode, we not only talk about what’s saving our lives (I had to laugh that she talked about something related to brain science and I talk about leggings!) and the books we’re reading, but then we dive into some deep heart topics. She shares what it means to Try Softer (the title of her new book), the difference between Big T trauma and little t trauma and how we might be experiencing the aftershocks of little t trauma without even realizing it and this might be at the root of our stress, anxiety, and overwhelm. Aundi explains thoroughly how the body processes pain — whether physical or emotional. And she provides very concrete suggestions and ideas for how we can start to take steps toward more healing and wholeness. Whether you feel stressed, anxious, and overwhelmed or whether you know someone who does, this conversation is highly important and one that you do not want to miss. I have thought of it over and over again since we recorded last week and will be taking so many nuggets of truth from it to apply to my everyday life. In This Episode:  [00:25] Welcome back! I am so excited to have Aundi Kolber on the show! [01:06] Aundi shares about a little about her background and family [03:43] Meaningful walks are saving Aundi’s life — and the brain science she shares here is fascinating! And then, to keep things a little more down to earth (!), I talk about my new favorite leggings. [09:25] We discuss our current reads, including one written by a therapist and a novel I finished last week.  [13:08] Why did Aundi write Try Softer? (I loved that she wrote it as a love letter to her younger self!) [17:20] We talk about the stigma surrounding the word “trauma” and why it’s important to understand if you’ve experienced little t trauma. [19:27] How can you tell if you’re holding onto the pain of the past and how does it show up in your life? [23:50] What does it mean to “try softer” and how can we apply this in our every day lives? [27:37] Aundi shares practical first steps for beginning to break free from stress, anxiety, and survival mode — even if you feel so stuck and overwhelmed that you don’t know how to take the first step! Links and Resources: Try Softer by Aundi Kolber Aundi’s Website My New Favorite Leggings Maybe You Should Talk to Someone by Lori Gottlieb (Note: Aundi wrote me a few days after the interview to say that she would give a language warning with this book. She said it didn’t show up until the later parts of the book which she hadn’t read yet when we did this interview.) Boundaries for Your Soul by Allison Cook and Kimberly Miller The Printed Letter Bookshop by Katherine Reay Dear Mr. Knightley by Katherine Reay Aundi on Facebook Aundi on Twitter Crystal’s Favorite Things on Amazon CrystalPaine.com MoneySavingMom.com Crystal’s Instagram account (I’d love for you to follow me there! I usually hop on at least a few times per day and share behind-the-scenes photos and videos, my grocery store hauls, funny stories, or just anything I’m pondering or would like your advice or feedback on!) Have feedback on the show or suggestions for future episodes or topics? Send me an email: crystal@moneysavingmom.com How to Listen to The Crystal Paine Show The podcast is available on iTunes, Android, Stitcher, and Spotify. You can listen online through the direct player we’ll include in the show notes of each episode. OR, a much easier way to listen is by subscribing to the podcast through a free podcast app on your phone. (Find instructions for how to subscribe to a podcast here.) Ready to dive in and listen? Hit the player above or search for “The Crystal Paine Show” on your favorite podcast app. Note: This post contains affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase, we may receive a small commission — at no additional cost to you. Thank you so much for your support! [...]
1
11

5 Things to Know About the Delta Reserve for Business Credit Card

click photo for more information
5 Things to Know About the Delta Reserve for Business Credit Card
Small-business owners who want a new credit card and who are continually flying out of Atlanta, Boston, Cincinnati or other strongholds of Delta Air Lines might shortlist the Delta Reserve for Business Credit Card. Learn More It offers airport lounge access, progress toward elite status and other perks. The card is scheduled to get better —... Gregory Karp is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: gkarp@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @spendingsmart. The article 5 Things to Know About the Delta Reserve for Business Credit Card originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
1
9

Smart Bricks meet Clicks & Voice – the Walmart Way

click photo for more information
Smart Bricks meet Clicks & Voice – the Walmart Way
PHYGITAL E-commerce giant Amazon is a big player in many markets. From e-commerce, cloud, delivery, entertainment, payments, smart home devices, and physical stores. Retail giant Walmart, not included in the FANGs or the GAFAs, as it is a native of another tribe (physical retailers), can actually stand respectfully next to Amazon and other large non-financials […] The post Smart Bricks meet Clicks & Voice – the Walmart Way appeared first on Daily Fintech. [...]
1
35

Life Update: Pregnancy (week 11) & a trip to South Africa & Herndon, VA

click photo for more information
Life Update: Pregnancy (week 11) & a trip to South Africa & Herndon, VA
Welcome to my weekly life update where I share about my pregnancy & give you a peek into our life this past week. If you want to follow a lot more behind-the-scenes and real-time updates every week, be sure to follow my stories and posts on Instagram. In case you missed last week’s update, check it out here. 11 weeks! I’m so excited to be getting close to the 2nd trimester! This week was a week full of ups and downs. I had some really bad days and two surprisingly decent days where I actually had a few short windows where I didn’t feel nauseous. It was the most incredible feeling and, even though it was short-lived, it was just the encouragement I needed after having a really rough and discouraging week last week nausea-wise. (By the way, it seems that most people have told me that their nausea is always worst in the mornings. For some reason, mine gets progressively worse as the day goes on. By bedtime, it’s at the severe level and often keeps me up for a few hours. I don’t have any explanation for this but it’s how it’s been in all my pregnancies so I guess it just is what it is!) HIGHLIGHTS: I had another doctor’s appointment this week and another ultrasound. Since Jesse and Kathrynne are in South Africa, I took Silas and Kaitlynn with me to the appointment. It was exciting for them to get to see our baby on the screen! Also, my doctor says the baby has grown quite a bit & everything is looking so healthy. NOTABLE: We had the NIPT test done this week. We opted to do it for a variety of reasons, even though it’s not 100% accurate. One exciting side benefit: we should be finding out what we’re having in the next two weeks! We haven’t decided whether we’ll be telling people or not. We didn’t find out with either of the girls but chose to find out with Silas and decided that we preferred finding out to being surprised. However, with Silas, we decided to keep it a secret from everyone, including our extended family. We may or may not do that again. WEIGHT GAIN: A total of 4 pounds so far… which means that I have officially outgrown a lot of my clothes. I ordered a few new tunic tops from Amazon and a few new pairs of leggings. I also went through my closet and pared it down to the looser-fitting tops/bottoms I already own that I can still into comfortably. I’m guessing I’ll be transitioning to maternity clothes sometime in the next 4-6 weeks. (If I remember right, I usually start wearing them around 17-20 week but I feel like my belly has popped faster this pregnancy!) A Peek Into Our Week A number of you have asked for me to post a picture of Quill (our pet hedgehog). He’s doing so well and has grown so big. A Trip to South Africa Jesse and Kathrynne flew to South Africa on Wednesday to visit our friends there and see how things were going with the ministry we support there. (We usually go every year and it’s one of my favorite places ever, but for some reason, I didn’t feel a peace about going this year. It didn’t make any sense at all, but I just felt strongly that I wasn’t supposed to go… little did I know that it was going to be because I was pregnant!) They’ve been sending me pictures of their time there and I am just so happy for them. Jesse said that Kathrynne is having the best time and it warms my mama heart so much to see my girl halfway around the world loving on these kids and teens. While they’ve been gone, we stayed busy back here. I got to interview Aundi Kolber for next week’s podcast episode. I can’t wait for you to listen to this episode; it is fantastic! (Also, we looked like we were dressed for a gender reveal party or something! I didn’t even realize it until I looked at the picture we took together after she left!) I also was so excited one morning to feel well enough to go to Kroger quickly and pick up their Friday-Saturday deals! A Trip to Herdon, VA And then Kaitlynn and Silas flew with me to Herdon, VA for me to speak at the 2:1 conference. (I usually only bring one child with me on speaking engagements, but since they were both on fall break and Jesse and Kathrynne were gone, they both got to come with me!) One of the highlights of the conference was getting to meet Janet Benge, who has co-authored so many of the Christian Heroes Then and Now books. I had to get a picture for my mom. I loved getting to do a breakout workshop about exploding your engagement on Instagram! The attendees were the best and I could have stayed for another hour or two and answered all the questions I didn’t get to answer during the session and at the end! One of my favorite things is getting to help others also fall in love with the power of Instagram. Speaking of which, are you following me on Instagram? If not, you’re missing out as I share lots of behind-the-scenes, money-saving deals, and real-time updates there… many that I never get space to share here on the blog! I also gave the morning keynote sharing how my parents impacted my life and the power of legacy. What I’m… Reading right now: The Only Plane in the Sky (Note: This has a little bit of language in it, but it is a very worthwhile read and I would highly recommend it.) Watching right now: Have you seen the Enneagram Rhapsody? Multiple sent it to me this week and I had to laugh because there was so much truth in it. If you are an Enneagram fan, you’ll probably love it, if you haven’t seen it yet. 🙂 Listening to right now: This week, I’ve been listening to the Serene and Pearl UnShow at night when I have trouble sleeping because of nausea. I love the Trim Healthy Mama podcast and their quirky sense of humor and the way they disagree with one another and tease one another. (A lot of people are annoyed with how they talk over each other on their podcast. I happen to love it — probably because I grew up in a large family and we are always talking over each other and teasing one another mercilessly!) Loving right now: This kimono (I have it on in the photo at the top of this post. It’s perfect to dress up an outfit, so comfortable, and is something I’ve worn multiple times in the last month!) What are YOU reading, watching, listening to, and loving right now? I’d love to hear! In Case You Missed It: Guess what? I actually went to Kroger! Jesse Answers Your Burning Questions 2019 Goals: September Update [...]
1
31

The new wisdom in credit ratings for SMEs

click photo for more information
The new wisdom in credit ratings for SMEs
Jessica Ellerm is a thought leader specializing in Small Business and the Gig Economy and is the CEO and Co-Founder of Zuper, a neowealth disruptor in Australia. Back in 1968, Dr Edward Altman was responsible for a major innovation in the field of credit risk analysis for corporate businesses – the Altman Z-score. While it transformed […] The post The new wisdom in credit ratings for SMEs appeared first on Daily Fintech. [...]
1
9

How To Pay Off Credit Card Debt Faster

click photo for more information
How To Pay Off Credit Card Debt Faster
According to NerdWallet, the average credit card debt for the American Family is nearly $16,000.  That is a considerable amount, and the monthly financial burdens can quickly become overwhelming You may feel as if there is no light at the end of the tunnel as you see no end in site.  How in the world ... Read More about How To Pay Off Credit Card Debt Faster The post How To Pay Off Credit Card Debt Faster appeared first on Penny Pinchin' Mom. [...]
1
22

New from SmileDirectClub: Straighten your teeth while you sleep!

click photo for more information
New from SmileDirectClub: Straighten your teeth while you sleep!
Want to straighten your teeth while you sleep? Check out this brand-new program from SmileDirectClub! Note: This post is sponsored by SmileDirectClub and contains affiliate links. All opinions are 100% my own. Read our disclosure policy here. As I’ve been sharing my journey with SmileDirectClub, I’ve heard from many of you who are very interested in using SmileDirectClub, but you don’t want to wear retainers all day and all night. Some of you said that it just sounds like a pain. Others of you said that you couldn’t because of your job. One of you told me you work in customer care and are on the phone all day and need to be able to talk clearly and you were worried people wouldn’t be able to understand you as well if you were wearing aligners. Introducing the Nighttime Clear Aligners Program Well, if the thought of wearing aligners all day and all night has been holding you back from signing up for SmileDirectClub, I’ve got GREAT news for you! They just launched their new Nighttime Clear Aligners program. This allows you to only wear aligners at night (approximately 10 hours/day) and to straighten your teeth while you sleep. Now, most of you probably don’t sleep for 10 hours total every night, but you could put these in at 9 p.m. when you’re winding down for bed and wear them until 7 a.m. in the morning. Then, just pop them out, rinse them, put them in the case, and go about your day. Repeat the same thing the next night and the next night and watch your teeth “magically” begin to straighten! The Nighttime Clear Aligners program is twice as long as the regular aligners program (10 months versus 5-6 months), but you never have to mess with your aligners during the day! I think that’s a HUGE score! Best of all, the price is exactly the same ($1895 total or $85/month)! I have been so excited to tell you about this program as I think it is such a great idea and I wish they had had it when I started SmileDirectClub! My 5-Month SmileDirectClub Update Speaking of SmileDirectClub, I’ve been so happy with my overall experience! I can’t tell you how many people have noticed how much better my teeth look — without me ever mentioning anything to them! Now that I’m finished with my 5-month treatment, I only have to wear retainers at night to make sure my teeth don’t go back to where they once were. It is SO NICE to not worry about wearing aligners during the day, but I’m so happy I decided to take the plunge and do this program. It has been everything I hoped and more. Best of all, every time I see a photo of myself with my new smile, I can’t help but smile even bigger. It’s given me a newfound level of confidence. My teeth aren’t perfect, but they are so much better than they used to be and the process was really quite simple, with minimal pain and discomfort. Overall, I would highly recommend SmileDirectClub and have had a really positive experience with them. For years to come, when I see my smile or look in the mirror, I will be grateful to them! Read More of My SmileDirectClub Journey: My Completely Honest Experience at the SmileShop My First Month Wearing SmileDirectClub Aligners Does SmileDirectClub Really Work? (My 90-Day Update) Want to try SmileDirectClub? I highly recommend going to a local SmileShop to get a 3D Scan done. If you don’t have one nearby, though, you can order an at-home Impression Kit. Again, I would personally recommend going into a SmileShop. It’s completely FREE to do so and they do such a great job of giving you such a high-quality scan. But you if you do end up ordering an at-home Impression Kit, use coupon code MSMDEAL to get 50% off the price. And if you decide to sign up with SmileDirectClub, you can also use coupon code MSMDEAL at checkout to get $100 off the price of your Invisible Aligners. [...]
1
19

Limited Time Offer: Hyatt Cardholders Can Earn a $50 Statement Credit

click photo for more information
Limited Time Offer: Hyatt Cardholders Can Earn a $50 Statement Credit
Hyatt credit card holders already have impressive points earning power when they stay at Hyatt properties. Now for a limited time, they can earn a $50 statement credit, too, by spending at least $300 with Hyatt Place or Hyatt House. Like many hotel promotions, this one requires World of Hyatt members to register before they... Meghan Coyle is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: mcoyle@nerdwallet.com. The article Limited Time Offer: Hyatt Cardholders Can Earn a $50 Statement Credit originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
1
24

What Walmart’s Switch to Capital One Means for Your Credit

click photo for more information
What Walmart’s Switch to Capital One Means for Your Credit
On Oct. 11, 2019, Walmart’s massive credit card portfolio is due to transition from Synchrony to Capital One. And for existing Walmart cardholders, this major switch raises a big question: Will changing issuers affect my credit? The short answer: Probably not, because of credit reporting conventions that issuers follow. “A transition of account ownership does not... Claire Tsosie is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: claire@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @ideclaire7. The article What Walmart’s Switch to Capital One Means for Your Credit originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
1
28

Overwhelmed by Student Loans? Find Some Relief With Debt Forgiveness

click photo for more information
Overwhelmed by Student Loans? Find Some Relief With Debt Forgiveness
Ever wonder what life would be like if you could make your student loans disappear? It’s possible, but it isn’t magic.  Or immediate. Or easy. Or likely. (Sorry.) But considering the mounting pile of outstanding student debt in U.S. — at $1.5 trillion, student loans were the largest non-mortgage source of household debt in 2018 — we should at least consider every option for wiping it out, right? If your student loans have become more than you can handle, seeking forgiveness or discharge of your debt could be an option. Check out this Penny Hoarder guide to student loan forgiveness so you’ll know all your options. Understanding Student Loan Forgiveness, Cancelation and Discharge Before we dig into individual programs, let’s cover the ground rules. First, a word about words: Forgiveness, discharge and cancellation essentially mean the same thing when you’re thinking about your student debt — they mean you no longer have to pay the remaining balance on your loan — but the terms are usually applied in different circumstances: Forgiveness is usually used in cases where you qualify because of your job or employer.  Discharge typically refers to other reasons for not paying the debt, such as your financial situation.  Cancellation is a more general term that often covers both. All of the programs covered here are only available for federal student loans, not private student loans. And depending on the program, there are requirements for which types of federal loans qualify. Additionally, these programs typically take years to qualify for — sometimes as much as 25 years. There’s one exception to this rule, but it’s probably the least desirable way for getting rid of your debt. (Spoiler alert: It’s death.) Many of the options depend on your job. If you work in public service or choose a specific profession, you can receive forgiveness for a loan after a specified amount of time, during which you must document your employment. If you don’t have a job through which you can receive loan forgiveness, your other choices for forgiveness or discharge become limited to income-driven options or extreme circumstances, like becoming permanently disabled or your school closing. Additionally, although you might celebrate wiping out your student loans, understand that you might be trading your student loan debt for a big tax bill, depending on the program.  Pro Tip If you borrowed before July of 2010, you’ll need to consolidate your loans to qualify Public Service Loan Forgiveness and some income-driven repayment plans. In general, if your loan is wiped out because you worked in public service, you won’t owe federal taxes. And if you die or are permanently disabled, you don’t owe taxes on the forgiven amount (and neither do your survivors). Pretty much everyone else can expect to get a bill from Uncle Sam. But even if your forgiveness isn’t subject to federal taxes, you could still be on the hook at the state level, so find out beforehand whether you’ll be liable for taxes and plan accordingly. We’ve broken down the programs by work and non-work qualifications. We’ve also included “scam alerts” throughout since, unfortunately, there are plenty of unscrupulous individuals and companies out there who prey on the unsuspecting and often desperate people overwhelmed by student loan debt.  With that in mind, let’s dive in. Student Loan Forgiveness Based on Your Job If you’re committed to a life of helping others, whether it’s by working for the government or a non-profit or by choosing a public service profession, you could qualify for student loan forgiveness. This is not a commitment to be taken lightly, as it means you’ll have to ensure that your loans qualify, stay current on your payments throughout the process and stick with a job that qualifies for forgiveness.  And while you may graduate ready to give back through a career in public service, a lot can change over those qualifying years — whether it’s adding family responsibilities to the mix or simply realizing you don’t like your job. Pro Tip Scam alert! It’s illegal for anyone — including companies that offer to “help” you repay your student loans — to ask for your federal student aid user name and id. Never give that info out. “There is danger and risk with that because you don’t know what is necessarily going to occur,” said Melinda Opperman, executive vice president at Credit.org. “What if you change professions halfway through and you don’t do the whole 10 years? Circumstances change.” If you do change your mind and switch to a non-qualifying job, you’ll be responsible for paying the remaining amount you owe. Public Service Loan Forgiveness The Public Service Loan Forgiveness program is probably the most well known, but for all the wrong reasons. Out of the approximately 76,000 PSLF applications that were processed by March 2019, 518 applications were approved. For those who didn’t major in math, that’s less than 1%.  And the program that was supposed to fix the problem — Temporary Expanded Public Service Loan Forgiveness (TEPSLF)? Yeah, it turns out the acceptance rate for that one nearly matches the original. Pro Tip Scam alert! When it comes to federal student loan repayment applications, there’s nothing a company can do for you that you can’t do for free on your own. But if you have your heart set on serving the public at a government or non-profit entity and are facing a mountain of student loans, then the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program may be the way to wipe out your debt. Be prepared for a long wait — it takes a minimum of 10 years to qualify — and to follow a lot of rules in regards to your loan and employment eligibility. To help you navigate the process, check out these seven essential questions to ask about Public Service Loan Forgiveness. Teacher Student Loan Forgiveness No one goes into teaching for the money. But when student loans leave you thousands of dollars in debt, scraping out the payments on a teacher’s salary can be downright overwhelming. Fortunately, there’s a specific Teacher Student Loan Forgiveness program for those who work in underserved communities and/or subject areas.  Forgiveness will be dependent upon where you teach, what you teach and how long you teach, and the maximum amount you can receive is $17,500. But you can discover additional options for graduating from student debt with these teacher student loan forgiveness programs. Nursing Student Loan Forgiveness Medical debt can be an additional burden for students, so nursing student loan forgiveness offer some help with the debt.  In addition to a couple of specific loan-forgiveness programs for nurses, you can also find debt relief through programs at some hospitals. Eligibility requirements can include holding an advanced degree, having a specific loan type or working in a specialized department.  Other medical professionals, including doctors, can find student loan relief at the national and local level through the Association of American Medical Colleges. Perkins Loan Forgiveness The Perkins loan program program ended on Sept. 30, 2017, but you’re still on the hook for paying off any of the Perkins loans you took out. That said, if you work in public service — including teaching, law enforcement and the military — you could qualify for a partial or total discharge of your Perkins loan.   Depending on your career, you could receive 100% loan cancellation for five years of service, which is distributed in annual increments. FROM THE DEBT FORUM Student loans!! 8/9/19 @ 1:07 PM J My debt 9/23/19 @ 12:05 PM [...]
1
72

How to Buy a House Without Help From Your Family

click photo for more information
How to Buy a House Without Help From Your Family
On the highway to homeownership, coming up with a sufficient down payment continues to be one of the biggest roadblocks. In fact, many prospective home buyers, particularly first-timers, find it hard to overcome this challenge without the kindness of loved ones. Among recent home buyers age 28 and younger (who are more likely to be... Beth Buczynski is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: bbuczynski@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @bethbuczynski. The article How to Buy a House Without Help From Your Family originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
1
37

How to Make Your First $100 From Blogging {free class}

click photo for more information
How to Make Your First $100 From Blogging {free class}
Are you a new blogger or a longtime blogger who still hasn’t figured out how to really make money from blogging? You don’t want to miss my new brand-new class on How to Make Your First $100 From Blogging. Best of all, it’s FREE! In this free class, you’ll learn: 5 tried and true ways YOU can make money from your blog today The #1 mistake most bloggers make that keeps them from earning an income My secrets for building a 7-figure blog on a shoestring budget Plus, you’ll have the opportunity to ask me your burning questions about monetizing a blog Go here to sign up for one of the two times I’m teaching it on Saturday or the one time I’m teaching it on Monday. The class will be about 50 minutes long and then I’ll allow 30 minutes extra at the end to answer your questions live. By the way, on these classes, I’ll also be unveiling my brand-new course, Monetize Your Blog: A Beginner’s Guide to a Profitable Blog. You’ll be one of the first ones to have the opportunity to sign up for it! P.S. If you can’t make it to the live class, still go ahead and sign up because I’ll be sending you a replay of the class once it’s finished. [...]
1
45

How This Couple Paid off $20K in Credit Card Debt — Making Less Than $70K/Year

click photo for more information
How This Couple Paid off $20K in Credit Card Debt — Making Less Than $70K/Year
It happened fast. In a little over a month, Wilmer and Kimberly Swerdfeger had accumulated $20,000 in credit card debt. “Everything went haywire,” Wilmer says. The 51-year-old Bakersfield, California, resident has been an emergency medical technician on a 911 ambulance for more than 10 years. Wilmer says both he and his wife, who’s a substitute teacher, are financially responsible. They earn a modest income, but they have near-perfect credit scores, and their cars are paid for in full. Heck, they don’t even like having more than $600 on their credit card. So when $20,000 in unexpected home repairs and emergency medical procedures hit all at once, Wilmer felt stressed. He went looking for a way out and found an online lender called Figure, which offered home equity lines of credit (HELOCs) of up to $150,000 with annual percentage rates (APR)  starting at 4.99%*. This could save him hundreds of dollars in interest each month and would leave him with a single manageable monthly payment — not multiple credit card bills due on different days. Plus, Wilmer could get a free quote in five minutes and apply online. It was worth a shot, right? How a HELOC Can Alleviate the Stress of Credit Card Debt If you own a home, a HELOC allows you to borrow money against its equity — that’s the money you’ve paid toward your mortgage. Use Wilmer as an example. He’s accumulated more than $200,000 in home equity over the 20 years he’s owned his home. He applied for a five-year HELOC through Figure, which granted him access to $24,000 worth of his home’s equity with an  APR of 5.75%. He could then use that $24,000 to pay off his high-interest credit card balances. With a HELOC, you can use the money for whatever you want — but that doesn’t mean you should. HELOCs (typically) come with lower interest rates than personal loans because they’re backed by your home. This is a huge perk. But that also means if you fail to pay back what you’d borrowed, you risk losing your home. Many experts suggest only opening a HELOC to consolidate and pay off high-interest credit cards (like Wilmer) or to increase the value of your home with repairs or renovations. Don’t Let Lenders Take Advantage of Your Bad Situation Before he found Figure, Wilmer contacted his bank and other lenders about opening a HELOC. But he quickly realized: “These guys were trying to take advantage of my desperation.” “A couple of banks told me I qualified for a $190,000 line of credit,” Wilmer says. “It’s taken me 20 years of hard work to build up that equity.” He didn’t need that much money, and when Wilmer told one lender that, the voice on the other end responded: “Go buy a new wardrobe! Take a vacation!” It’s taken me 20 years of hard work to build up that equity. That enraged Wilmer. He knew that was the last thing anyone should do with borrowed money. Other banks offered a HELOC with a draw period of nine years, meaning he’d have more chance to spend. It was unnecessary; Wilmer just wanted to pay off his debt as soon as possible. A Line of Credit Could Save You Hundreds Each Month Right when he reached peak frustration, he learned about Figure. It offered home equity lines of credit for up to $150,000, with APRs starting at 4.99%. But because he hadn’t heard of the company before, Wilmer had questions. He picked up the phone and called Figure… several times. Everyone he spoke with was friendly, helpful and patient; no one was pushy. Wilmer even asked about the history of the company. Skepticism now aside, Wilmer got a free quote from Figure, then applied for a HELOC from his phone. He got approved for a five-year line of credit for with an APR of 5.75%. It was way better than any previous offer he’d received. Whereas his bank told him he’d have to wait three weeks for approval and to receive his funds, Figure directly deposited the money he requested into his account the next day. And, unlike some lenders might have, Figure didn’t surprise him with fees. He paid an origination fee (typical), but he wasn’t charged an application fee and doesn’t face monthly maintenance fees. Moving on From Unexpected Credit Card Debt  Once Wilmer was approved for his line of credit, he says, “It was like, ‘Wam bam bam,’ and everything was paid off. Now I just owe Figure. It took a lot of stress off.” He’s no longer worried about making payments toward his wife’s emergency eye surgery. Or paying off that air conditioning system — his old one went kaput the day his wife came home from surgery, and California summers are hot. And he went ahead and paid off a lingering $4,000 he still owed on roof repairs. It took a lot of stress off. Now he’s left with two easy-to-manage monthly payments: His mortgage and his Figure payment. He’s even throwing some extra money toward his line of credit so he can pay it off early — Figure has no early repayment penalty. It only takes five minutes to check your rate with Figure. If you like what you see and your application is approved, Figure will initiate funding within five days*. Then it’s goodbye to high interest rates and credit card debt.   *Terms and conditions apply. Visit figure.com for further information. Figure Lending LLC is an equal opportunity lender. NMLS #1717824 Carson Kohler (carson@thepennyhoarder.com) is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
1
101

Making the Most of the Uber Visa Credit Card

click photo for more information
Making the Most of the Uber Visa Credit Card
For serious foodies, the Uber Visa Card packs plenty of features, minus the surge pricing: The card’s annual fee is $0. To get the best performance possible from the card, here’s what to keep in mind. » MORE: Full review of the Uber Visa Card Scoop up the sign-up bonus Learn More The Uber Visa Card features the following welcome offer... Robin Saks Frankel is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: rfrankel@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @robinsaks. The article Making the Most of the Uber Visa Credit Card originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
1
33

7 Surprising Things That Damage Your Credit Score

click photo for more information
7 Surprising Things That Damage Your Credit Score
The next time you check your credit score, you might discover it has taken a tumble because of a seemingly small mishap on your part. This happened to me once because I misplaced a bill for a whopping $12.70. My nonpayment ended up being reported to credit bureaus, also known as credit-reporting agencies. The result was an 80-point decrease in my credit score and several months of regret. [...]
1
74

2 Programs for Homebuyers With Good Credit (but Not Much Cash)

click photo for more information
2 Programs for Homebuyers With Good Credit (but Not Much Cash)
Dreaming of becoming a homeowner?  While it may be fun to fantasize about what color you’ll paint the living room and which shower curtain will adorn the guest bath, there’s one important consideration to take care of first.  How are you going to finance it? Many mortgages require a sizable down payment — historically up to 20% of the full purchase price of the home. Of course, 20% of a six-figure price tag is a pretty hefty bill to foot, which is part of the reason the average homebuyer is putting down far less these days.  But not every lender will let you get your foot in the door for less cash upfront… which is why we want to introduce you to two mortgage programs that may just help you reach your homeownership goals even if a large down payment isn’t in your budget. Government-controlled corporations Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac both offer mortgage programs aimed specifically at candidates whose credit histories are good, but whose income might not allow them to save up a traditional down payment. Fannie Mae’s is called HomeReady, and Freddie Mac’s is called HomePossible.  Fannie Mae HomeReady and Freddie Mac HomePossible: How Do These Two Mortgage Programs Work? If you’ve got decent credit but don’t earn enough to have much wiggle room, one of these programs may be a fit. But how do they work — and what’s the difference between them? In a lot of ways, the two programs are very similar. Neither requires you to be a first-time homebuyer, and both allow you to finance up to 97% of the property value, which means your down payment can be as low as 3%, depending on your specific qualifications — and both make allowances that help you fork over even that small down payment from a variety of sources including gifts from relatives, government grants, or a second mortgage. And both have similar income requirements: You must make 80% or less of the median income in your area. Both programs allow non-occupant co-borrowers to help you apply for the loan, which can be helpful for those trying to help a family member relocate or buy their first home.  But as much as they share in common, there are some important differences between HomeReady and Home Possible that could help you decide which of the two to apply for. Fannie Mae HomeReady HomeReady is available to borrowers with a credit score of 620 or greater, though those with a score over 680 may get better rates.  If you have someone living with you who pays you rent, or a “boarder,” their income qualifies in determining your eligibility, as does the income of a non-resident co-borrower, which can be helpful if your earnings are low enough to endanger your approval. To qualify for Fannie Mae HomeReady, at least one borrower must complete the Framework online homeowner education program, which costs $75. According to the FAQ, your lender may provide a credit against closing costs to make up for this fee, but it’s not guaranteed. Of course, in the grand scheme of things, $75 is a pretty small price to pay for a financial product that could help you save money in the long run. Freddie Mac Home Possible Although Freddie Mac doesn’t publish its minimum credit score requirements, it does match Fannie Mae’s 3% down payment for the most qualified borrowers. However, only borrower income is counted when determining eligibility, so you can’t get a boost from the earnings of your co-borrower or spouse. (You may still be able to count your boarder or renter’s income, however.) Furthermore, the occupying borrower may own another residential property — even a financed one. And you can skip the homebuyer education requirement if at least one borrower on the loan application is not a first-time home buyer. If you are a first-time buyer and you need to meet homebuyer education courses, you can meet this requirement in a wider variety of ways: homebuyer education provided by HUD-approved counseling agencies housing finance agencies (HFAs) community development financial institutions (CDFIs) mortgage insurance companies or other programs that meet National Industry Standards for Homeownership and Counseling. There’s also an option for a free online homebuyer training offered through Freddie Mac itself called CreditSmart  – Steps to Homeownership.  FROM THE HOME BUYING FORUM 401k Loan 7/29/19 @ 10:35 AM B Knowledge Is Important When Buying A Home 7/22/19 @ 9:18 AM Can I buy a home with student loan debt? 6/12/19 @ 11:20 AM Fund my home 6/12/19 @ 1:11 PM C See more in Home Buying or ask a money question What About FHA Loans? There’s an alternative to Fannie Mae’s HomeReady and Freddie Mac’s Home Possible mortgages that you’ve probably already heard of: FHA loans.  In many ways an FHA loan is similar to the above-mentioned programs: You don’t have to be a first-time buyer, and you can score a down payment of as low as 3.5%.  And unlike the Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac products, FHA loans allow buyers with lower credit scores to qualify — though if your score is between 500-579, you’ll have to cough up a full 10%. FHA loans may also offer lower interest rates than HomeReady or Home Possible, but they often have a longer appraisal process, and unfortunately, you’ll need to pay two types of mortgage insurance: an upfront premium at closing, plus monthly premiums. Mortgage insurance can generally be cancelled through both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac programs once your loan balance is less than 80% of the home’s value. One thing’s for certain: Buying a house can be complicated, especially if you don’t have the cash for a large down payment on hand. It’s worth shopping around and reaching out to different lenders directly to see how they can work with you and learn more about your specific rates and terms. Then, you can get back to the fun stuff — like comparing paint swatches and running your hands over carpet samples. Home, sweet home! Jamie Cattanach’s work has been featured at Fodor’s, Yahoo, SELF, The Huffington Post, The Motley Fool and other outlets. Learn more at www.jamiecattanach.com. This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
1
55

FINRA Proposes TRACE Reporting Obligations for U.S. Dollar-Denominated Foreign Sovereign Debt

click photo for more information
FINRA Proposes TRACE Reporting Obligations for U.S. Dollar-Denominated Foreign Sovereign Debt
The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is proposing to expand TRACE reporting requirements to include transactions in U.S. dollar-denominated foreign sovereign debt securities. Under the proposal, this transaction information would be reported for regulatory purposes and would not be publicly disseminated. Comments on the proposal must be submitted to FINRA by September 24, 2019. More information is available here. [...]
1
77

Credit Freezes: A Powerful (and Free) Way to Fight Identity Theft

click photo for more information
Credit Freezes: A Powerful (and Free) Way to Fight Identity Theft
Another day, another massive data breach.  Equifax, Capital One, Marriott … the list seems endless.  And as more of our personal information is digitized, the risk of it ending up in the wrong hands rises, leaving us increasingly vulnerable to identity theft and trashed credit. But while the scope of these data breaches can seem overwhelming (1.1 billion identities were exposed in 2016 alone), the reality is that you are not powerless. You can defend yourself, and you don’t have to go off the grid and hide out in a bunker in New Zealand. One of the most powerful ways to defend yourself is a credit freeze. Setting it up is simple, and best of all, it’s free. What’s a Credit Freeze? Credit Sesame defines a credit freeze as “a process which locks down your credit file and prevents identity thieves and cyber criminals from opening credit in your name.” Basically, access to your credit file is inaccessible to everyone except you.  Creditors, such as banks and credit card companies, ask to see credit report before opening new accounts. Since they won’t be able to see your credit history, they won’t be able to extend you a line of credit. Makes sense, right? And no, it won’t negatively affect your credit score. When Should You Freeze Your Credit? Many people freeze their credit after their identities have been stolen, which is fine. However, you’re basically in a race against the criminal. Who can get to your credit report first? Steven Weisman, a Bentley University professor and author of the fraud and identity theft blog Scamicide, suggests freezing your credit now — and always. He thinks of the tool as a “preventative medicine.” “This is the single best thing someone can do to protect themselves from being a victim of identity theft,” he says. “Even if your Social Security number was in the hands of an identity thief, you’d still be protected.” If you’d rather not put your credit on perma-freeze, then you should also consider it under the following circumstances: You’ve been the victim of a data breach. (At this point, that’s nearly all of us.) You believe you may have become a victim of identity theft. You want to protect your child’s credit. Once your credit is frozen, you will still have access to your credit report, as will current creditors and debt collectors.  Employers — both current and potential — have limited access to your credit report, as do some government agencies.  What Does a Credit Freeze Cost? Credit freezes now cost nothing, thanks to the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act, which became effective in September 2018. Prior to the law’s passage, credit freezes used to cost between $5 and $15 to set up, with a second charge to unlock the freeze.  (Victims of fraud were typically exempt from paying these costs.) This is the single best thing someone can do to protect themselves from being a victim of identity theft. The law also allows you to unfreeze and refreeze your credit at any time, at no cost. How to Freeze Your Credit It will take a bit of legwork on your part. You’ll need to request a credit freeze from each of the three main credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Each bureau has a slightly different process.  1. Contact the Three Major Credit Bureaus Have information like your Social Security number, birth date and most recent addresses on hand when you make your request. You can freeze your credit by mail, by phone or online. How to Freeze Your Credit With Equifax Online: https://www.equifax.com/personal/credit-report-services/ Phone: 800-685-1111 Mail: Equifax Security Freeze, P.O. Box 105788, Atlanta, GA 30348 How to Freeze Your Credit With Experian Online: https://www.experian.com/freeze/center.html Phone: 888‑397‑3742 Mail: Experian Security Freeze, P.O. Box 9554, Allen, TX 75013 How to Freeze Your Credit With TransUnion Online: https://www.transunion.com/credit-freeze Phone: 888-909-8872 Mail: TransUnion LLC, P.O. Box 2000, Chester, PA 19016 Note: All three credit bureaus say requesting a credit freeze by mail is the slowest method, and so if time is of the essence, you should consider requesting the freeze over the phone or online. If you do opt to request a credit freeze by mail, make sure to include your full name, date of birth, Social Security number, last two addresses, a clear copy of a government-issued identification card and a clear copy of a utility bill, bank statement or other form of proof of address. 2. Receive Your PIN and Keep It Safe The credit bureaus will set you up with a PIN, which will allow you to manage your credit freeze. Once you receive this number, make sure you keep it in a safe place where you can always find it. You will need to use it if you ever need to unfreeze — or “thaw” — your credit, like if you decide to apply for a mortgage or open a new credit card. 3. Manage Your Credit Freeze Your credit freeze should be active one business day after you make the request online or by phone. (The time frame for mail requests is three days.) You can manage it by logging into the bureau’s site using the credentials you established when you requested the credit freeze. If you want to make any changes via phone or mail, you’ll need to have that PIN on hand. How to Unfreeze Your Credit The time may come when you will need to unfreeze your credit — say, to apply for a credit card or shop for a loan. To do so, go to the credit bureau’s website and use the credentials you set up to request the thaw.  The freeze should be lifted within an hour, as required by federal law. (If you choose to request your credit thaw by mail, your wait time will be considerably longer — at least three business days from the receipt of the request.)  You can also request to have the freeze lifted temporarily, which is especially helpful if you are looking to rent an apartment or applying for a job, and then want to go back into lockdown. Pro Tip If you know which credit bureau your future landlord, creditor or employer will be contacting, you can save yourself some time by requesting the freeze be lifted for only that credit bureau. Pros and Cons of Credit Freezes The pros of having your credit frozen are pretty straightforward: It prevents anyone from opening new accounts in your name. It won’t affect your credit score. Best of all, it’s free. However, there are some possible pain points you should consider before requesting a credit freeze: Requesting and managing credit freezes through three credit bureaus can be a pain. You’ll need to lift the freeze if you want to apply for a new credit product. It doesn’t protect your existing accounts. FROM THE CREDIT FORUM REBUILDING CREDIT AFTER BANKRUPTCY 3/24/19 @ 1:56 PM savings account 8/5/19 @ 1:35 PM C Were you affected by the Equifax Data Breach? 7/31/19 @ 4:42 AM Effective Methods to Get The Best Credit Rating 6/27/19 @ 1:01 PM See more in Credit or ask a money question What Else Can You Do to Protect Your Credit? As we said earlier, a credit freeze can be an incredibly powerful and effective tool to protect your identity and your credit, but you shouldn’t allow it to lull you into a false sense of secur [...]
1
82

How to Pay off Credit Card Debt When You Have No Idea Where to Start

click photo for more information
How to Pay off Credit Card Debt When You Have No Idea Where to Start
We know how incredibly easy it is to rack up credit card debt.  More than 40% of American households carry a credit card balance, with an average balance of more than $9,000, according to a study from the financial data website ValuePenguin.  But here’s the tricky thing about credit cards: They only benefit you when you’re building credit and receiving perks — but not when you’re paying interest. If you’re paying a lot of interest on your balances, credit card companies are making money off of you. Your cards are using you, not the other way around. With average interest rates on new credit cards north of 17%, according to CreditCards.com, paying them off is a smart move. You can do it. And it’ll be worth it. 5 Ways to Pay off Debt From Multiple Credit Cards Before you start, try to stop using your credit cards altogether until you can use them without putting yourself in financial risk. Though the specifics will vary based on your situation, we only recommend using credit cards if:  You don’t have any debt outside of a mortgage or student loans. You have an emergency fund with three to six months of expenses saved. You can pay off your balance in full every month. However you do it, make paying off your credit cards — and learning to use them responsibly — a high priority.  First, determine how much credit card debt you have. You can do this using a tool like Credit Sesame, a free credit monitoring service.  Credit Sesame will also show you how to raise your credit score. James Cooper, a motivational speaker, raised his credit score 277 points following suggestions from the site. Then choose your weapons! We’ll go over five different methods for paying off your credit card debt. 1. The Debt Avalanche Instead of looking at your debt in its entirety, we recommend approaching it bit by bit. By breaking your debt down into manageable chunks, you’ll experience quicker wins and stay motivated.  Two popular ways to break down debt repayments are the debt avalanche and debt snowball methods.  Using the debt avalanche method, you’ll order your credit card debts from the highest interest rate to the lowest. You’ll make minimum payments on all your cards, and any extra income you have will go toward the highest-interest card.  Eventually, that card will be paid off. Then, you’ll attack the debt with the next-highest interest rate, and so on, until all your cards are paid off. 2. The Debt Snowball With the debt snowball method, you’ll order your debts from the lowest balance to highest, regardless of the interest rates on the cards. You’ll make minimum payments on all your cards, and any extra income will go to the credit card with the smallest balance. Starting with the smallest balance allows you to experience wins faster than you would with the avalanche. This method is ideal for people who are motivated by quick wins, but it has a downside: Those who choose it could end up paying more interest over the long term.    Here’s an example of how each method would work if you’re paying off four credit cards of varying balances and interest rates. $654 with 0% interest $5,054 with 15% interest $2,541 with 23% interest $945 with 17% interest If you followed the avalanche method, you’d pay off card No. 3 first, followed by No. 4, No. 2 and No. 1. If you followed the snowball method, you’d pay off card No. 1 first, followed by No. 4, No. 3 and No. 2.  Let’s say you have $600 per month to put toward debt. Using the snowball and avalanche comparison calculator from Dough Roller, you can see that it would take you 18 months to pay all of your cards off using either method.  The debt avalanche method would save you $105.73 of interest in the end, but you’d pay off your first card six months earlier by going with the snowball. Choosing the right method comes down to deciding whether you’d rather get quick results or save money on interest. We encourage you to check out Dough Roller’s calculator yourself, so you can calculate what each method would cost you. 3. The Balance Transfer  If you have good to excellent credit (typically a FICO score of 670 or above) and can feasibly pay off your debt within a year, a balance-transfer credit card is a great option. Balance-transfer cards can save you money on interest charges by letting you transfer the balance of a card with a high interest rate to a card with 0% interest.  Most of these cards offer 0% interest for 12 to 18 months with no annual fee. They generally have a 2% to 5% balance-transfer fee, but you can easily find balance-transfer cards with no fee. A higher credit score will help you qualify for a card with better terms. 4. Take out a Loan  You might look at getting a loan to consolidate and refinance your debts. If you get a loan with a lower interest rate and pay off your credit cards, that lower rate could potentially save you thousands of dollars in interest.  This is a realistic way to pay off credit card debt if you currently have little or no money to put toward it. Let’s look at two options here: A personal loan or a home equity loan.  Personal Loan  Online marketplaces will allow you to prequalify for a personal loan without doing a hard inquiry of your credit, so if you want to shop around, head there first. It won’t affect your credit score.  A good resource here is Fiona, a search engine for financial services, which can help match you with the right personal loan to meet your needs. It searches the top online lenders to match you with a personalized loan offer in less than a minute. Home Equity Loan  If you own a home with equity, you have three ways to borrow money against the value of your home: a home equity loan, home equity line of credit or a cash-out refinance. With a home equity loan, the lender gives you your money all at once, and you repay it at a fixed interest rate over a set period of time. With a home equity line of credit, you’re given a limit to borrow. Within that limit, you can take as little or as much as you need whenever you want. With a cash-out refinance, you refinance your first mortgage with a mortgage that’s slightly more money than your current one, and pocket the difference. For homeowners, these options will most likely offer the lowest interest rates. But they’re also the riskiest, because your home is the collateral — something you own that your lender can take if you don’t pay off the loan.  5. Debt Settlement The world of debt collections and creditors can be confusing, intimidating and sometimes even illegal. There’s a common misconception, for example, that someone can take your house or you can go to jail for not making your payments. But credit card debt is unsecured debt, meaning no one can put you in jail or take your house if you don’t pay it. If you’re being harassed by creditors or have circumstances that make your debt repayment confusing, don’t give up before finding out your options for assistance. Debt Management Program With a debt management program, a credit counseling company will handle your consolidation in hopes of getting you better interest rates and lower fees. You’ll be assigned a counselor, who will set up a repayment and education plan for you. This program is specifically for unsecured debt, like credit cards and medical bills. A debt management program pays your creditors for you to ensure you stay current on your debt payments. Your credit score may even improve during the program. But if you miss a payment, you can be dropped, and you’ll lose all the benefits you gained. Debt management plans usually don’t reduce your debt, but they may reduce your interest rates by as much as half or extend your payment timeline to make paying your debt more manageable. Credit Card Debt Settlement If you’re in more than just a temporary season of financial instability, and you can’t see yourself affording the amount of credit card deb [...]
1
109

How I Finished Graduate School Debt Free

click photo for more information
How I Finished Graduate School Debt Free
Guest post from Darya 0f A Mom From a Foreign Land Completing graduate school was one of my biggest accomplishments in life… and graduating with no school debt made the moment even sweeter! Before I started my master’s degree, I was terrified that I would graduate owing thousands of dollars and it would take me years to pay it back. I was also freaking out because I was pregnant and my baby was due in the middle of my first semester. I couldn’t imagine how we were going to afford it all. Gratefully, I had the support of my husband and a plan in hand. Three years later, I received my master’s in science and had no debt to repay. I went to NC State University in Raleigh, NC. The tuition and fees for one semester totaled to about $6,000 for in-state students. On average, a master’s degree at this school takes between 4 and 6 semesters (roughly $24,000 to $36,000!) Here are the things I did to finish graduate school DEBT FREE: 1. I worked at the university. The good thing about grad school is that you can often get an assistantship job and have your tuition covered. I also received a small stipend with it! I got a teaching assistantship that included assisting a professor during a class, grading homework, helping with attendance, and overly assisting with general administrative tasks. I had this job for 3 of my semesters — which meant no additional tuition costs for those 3 semesters! 2. I had another part-time job. I worked every Friday and Saturday night at a local steak house.This job gave me the flexibility and finances to earn my master’s degree. Occasionally, if my school load was lighter and my husband was available to watch our child, I would pick up an extra shift here and there. I made about 70% of my income at the restaurant. It was tiring and I had to work late but I needed the money. 3. I took some online classes. I didn’t want to take too many online classes, but taking a few helped me stay at home when I first had my baby. At the same time, I saved on gas (I had a 70-minute commute) and could work more hours at the restaurant. 4. I cut down on unnecessary expenses. We stopped eating out. On the days I went to school I brought my snacks, lunch, and coffee from home. I minimized social life and entertainment. I breastfed my daughter to save on formula. I kept clothes shopping to a minimal. 5. I earned a scholarship. I got a $1000 scholarship for working towards a Career in Conservation due to some volunteer work I did for a local environmental organization. 6. I made small payments on my loan while on grad school. My schooling lasted 6 semesters and (as I mentioned above) my tuition was covered for 3 of the semesters. In order to afford the other 3 semesters I had to get a loan. However, as soon as I got the loan though, I started making $50 monthly payment on it while still in school — even though I did not have to. Some months I could not afford to pay more, others I would pay extra. And once I started working full-time (see below), I started paying as much as I could. I ended up completely paying off my loan before I officially graduated! 7. I started a full-time job while still in school. I started working as soon as I finished all my classes, but I spent another 8 months working on my thesis. Working a full-time job and working on my paper was challenging. I had to devote my nights and weekends to writing, but I was happy to be able to get a job before I had officially graduated. Doing all these things took a lot of effort and dedication. I am so happy that I can now focus on paying off other bills and not worry about student loans. I believe that anybody that puts their mind to it, can do it too! Darya grew up in Eastern Europe, and has been living in the U.S. for over 10 years. To this day she still has trouble adjusting to the American culture, especially when it comes to raising a child. She lives with her husband and 3.5 year old daughter in Greenville, SC. While working a not-so-exciting governmental job, she still finds time to blog about motherhood, working mom life, healthy life, and recipes at A Mom From a Foreign Land. [...]
1
115

5 Things to Do When You Get the Bank of America Premium Rewards Credit Card

click photo for more information
5 Things to Do When You Get the Bank of America Premium Rewards Credit Card
You’ve applied for the Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card and were accepted. Once you receive it in the mail, what should you do next? 1. Plan your next vacation over dinner Cardholders receive 2 points per $1 on travel and dining and 1.5 points per dollar on other spending. Enjoy a leisurely dinner... Amanda Johnson is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: travel@nerdwallet.com. The article 5 Things to Do When You Get the Bank of America Premium Rewards Credit Card originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
1
92

Inbox Dollars: Get paid to read emails, take surveys, search the web, and more!

click photo for more information
Inbox Dollars: Get paid to read emails, take surveys, search the web, and more!
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here. Looking for ways to make some extra money from home? Try Inbox Dollars! Sign up for Inbox Dollars and you’ll get paid to read emails, search the web, take surveys, and more. I loved earning free gift cards from this company when Jesse was in law school and I had a lot more time than money. You won’t get rich using Inbox Dollars, but it’s a really great way to make a few extra bucks each month to stretch your budget a little further! Sign up here to get started. Looking for more opportunities to make money from home? See my list of recommended survey companies here. [...]
1
117

5 Things to Know About UBS Business Credit Cards

click photo for more information
5 Things to Know About UBS Business Credit Cards
UBS Bank caters to wealthy individuals, institutions and corporate clients worldwide, as well as private clients in Switzerland. So naturally, when the bank launched a trio of business credit cards in June 2019, the cards all came with princely perks and swanky benefits befitting the high-end clientele most likely to bank with UBS. Not everyone will be... Robin Saks Frankel is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: rfrankel@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @robinsaks. The article 5 Things to Know About UBS Business Credit Cards originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
1
160

When “I Do” Becomes “We Owe”: How to Pay Off Your Debt as a Couple

click photo for more information
When “I Do” Becomes “We Owe”: How to Pay Off Your Debt as a Couple
Marriage is about two becoming one. And along with all the good qualities you both bring to your marriage, you might each be crossing the threshold with student loans, mortgages and credit card debt from your life before the wedding. Although you may not legally be responsible for your spouse’s debt — that depends on your state’s rules — that whole for-better-or-worse thing probably means you want to help each other stress less about the money situation. So why not make tackling your debt the first big success of your new life together? We’ve rounded up tips from other couples that you can apply to your own debt-free goals. Strategies for Paying Off Marriage Debt as a Couple Marriage is, by design, supposed to be a long-term commitment. Although the discussion really should have happened earlier, talking about money now that you’re married is essential to tackling debt as well as planning for your future, according to Ariel Ward, Certified Financial Planner at Abacus Wealth Partners. “First of all, come together as a couple and have an honest conversation with each other about what the current state of your finances [is], facing the debt,” she said. “And also with that, talk about once we have this debt paid off, what are going to be our long-term goals around money.” Ready to stop stressing about finances and enjoy married life? Say “I do” to these savvy strategies. Think of “My Debt” and “Your Debt” as “Our Debt” One of the most important things to remember when you’re starting your new life facing a pile of debt: You’re in this together. “The couples that I see that have the most success have come to terms with what their financial situation is and they view each other as teammates,” said Ward, adding that they view themselves as co-owners of the debt, “even if one person brought more of it in.” About a year and a half into their marriage, Pete and Maria Sbashnig had not yet combined the finances of their blended family (each has two kids from previous marriages), so he figured it was time to see where they stood. Pro Tip Unless there is an extenuating circumstance, sign up for a joint bank account and become authorized users on each other’s credit cards so you both know where your money is going each month. Midway through listing their debts — which included two mortgages, a home equity line of credit, two car loans and over $60,000 in credit card debt — they realized their total debt was $332,000, putting their net worth at a negative $244,000. But rather than focusing only on their own bank accounts, the two decided to team up to pay off the debt. Pete brought in more income by taking side jobs umpiring baseball games, mowing lawns and helping his dad with his landscape business. Maria cut the family’s expenses by clipping coupons, cooking meals at home and limiting school shopping. Together they paid off $65,000 in 17 months while making less than $100,000 per year combined. Budget for Two When you’ve been budgeting for one (you have been budgeting, right?), you might be wondering how to turn that process into a debt paydown plan for two. By creating a budget together, you’ll both understand why certain expenses need to be cut, according to Ward. “It’s important to know where your money is going on a monthly or a weekly basis,” said Ward, who suggested using an app like Mint, which allows both of you to track expenses. “It is easy for couples to just assume the other is watching the budget … and maybe neither one of you is doing it.” Pro Tip When discussing your budget, set aside at least an hour when you know you can both offer your full attention. Make sure neither of you are tired or hungry — and turn off those cell phones! The Penny Hoarder contributor Abbigail Kriebs said she and her husband weren’t getting anywhere with their financial goals until they signed up for a budgeting class that forced them to talk about their financial situations, including struggles and insecurities they felt about money. They started setting aside time on Sunday afternoons to budget as a couple and discuss their living expenses, income and goals. By being honest about their spending and saving habits, they’ve been able to re-evaluate strategies to pay down their student debts. Earn Extra Money as a Couple Hustling is so romantic, right? Alright, maybe it’s not about flowers and candlelight dinners, but there are ways the two of you can pay off debt by working as a team. Finding a side gig that the two of you can do together allows you to find work you’ll both enjoy — or at least work you’ll enjoy doing because you’re together — according to Ward, who suggested dog walking as one option. The couples that I see that have the most success have come to terms with what their financial situation is and they view each other as teammates. “That could be kind of a fun date to go do together: You go pick up a dog to walk for 30 minutes, and you get paid for it,” she said. “And maybe not as fun, but… there are plenty of apps out there where you can put up an ad and offer to clean people’s houses, so that’s something you can do together as well.” Another option is to tag team your work, like Sam and Susen Meteer splitting their schedules to drive for Lyft. Sam is an elementary school teacher by day who gets behind the wheel on nights and weekends. On weekday mornings, Susen drops their kids at school and keeps on driving. Together, they can pull in $800 to $1,500 a week. FROM THE DEBT FORUM Student loans/debt consolidation 7/8/19 @ 1:09 PM Unsure How to Proceed 7/10/19 @ 7:39 PM From Debt to Debt-free to Debt again 6/30/19 @ 3:53 PM Travel Trailer Debt 6/25/19 @ 5:31 PM See more in Debt or ask a money question If your efforts to dig yourselves out of debt as couple still aren’t getting anywhere and it’s causing strife within your marriage, it may be time for outside help. “Talk to a marriage counselor that can help you learn how to work as a team on not just the debt but other things, or looking for a financial planner,” Ward said. “Sometimes it’s a good idea to seek outside help when you can’t solve things on your own.” Because getting out of debt together is a good way to start your happily ever after. Tiffany Wendeln Connors is a staff writer/editor at The Penny Hoarder. Read her bio and other work here, then catch her on Twitter @TiffanyWendeln. This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
0
157

Retire on Your Own Terms With Help From This Course

click photo for more information
Retire on Your Own Terms With Help From This Course
Knowing how to plan for retirement is a must-have for any soon-to-be retiree. It’s especially important if you’d like to keep a steady income stream, travel and enjoy your golden years. Having a plan in place will ensure that you’re ready for what’s ahead. If you need help with your own retirement plan, consider The Only Retirement Guide You’ll Ever Need... [...]
1
147

If Your Credit Score Is Under 700, Make These 3 Moves This Week

click photo for more information
If Your Credit Score Is Under 700, Make These 3 Moves This Week
You work hard to be a responsible credit user.  You pay your bills on time; you try to use your credit card only when you have to; and you have a few different credit accounts, all in good standing. You even know what a credit utilization ratio is and why it matters. That’s some next-level credit card management! But no matter what you do, your credit score never budges over 700.  And you are so, so frustrated by the whole dang thing. We don’t blame you. It’s hard to feel like you’re doing everything you’re supposed to, only to have an algorithm spit out a seemingly inexplicable three-digit number that brands you as “lesser than” in the eyes of the world’s financial institutions — especially when that three-digit number controls so much of your life. But don’t give up! These three moves might be the kickstart you need to get your credit score moving in the right direction — and best of all, you can do them right this week. 1. Write a “Goodwill Letter” to Your Creditors If your credit history is generally pretty good, save for a couple of missteps, then a well-executed goodwill letter may be one way to get those slip-ups removed from your report.  You’ll want to cover the following bases when writing your goodwill letter: Explain why and how long you have been a loyal customer of the creditor. Take responsibility for the mistakes that led to the blemishes on your credit history. Describe the steps you are taking to ensure they don’t happen again. Appeal to your audience’s sense of empathy. Show that you want forgiveness but also that you are determined to do better going forward. Show them you deserve this! Keep your letter concise, clear and to the point. Don’t forget to include important information, like your account number and the date and amount of the missed payment you want removed from your credit history. Once you’ve written your goodwill letter, address it using the information on the creditor’s website, cross your fingers for good luck, and drop it in the mailbox.   2. Check Your Credit Report for Errors Credit reporting agencies generally do a pretty thorough job of collecting your credit history, but that doesn’t mean they are infallible. In fact, one out of five credit reports has an error, according to a study by the Federal Trade Commission. And those errors could mean the difference between a credit score in the 600s and one in the 700s. Jamie Cattanach saw this firsthand as a victim of identity theft. She pulled her credit report and saw her score had plummeted to just below 600 after someone opened an AT&T account using her information. She got to work disputing the errors, and after writing just one letter, she was on the road to rebuilding her credit. Within a few years, her credit score was well over 700. To keep a closer eye on your credit, get your credit score and a “credit report card” for free from Credit Sesame. It breaks down exactly what’s on your credit report in layman’s terms, how it affects your score and how to address it. Because it simplifies everything, you should be able to spot any errors. For instance, if you find an “unpaid” credit card that you know you paid, or a bill in collections you know never existed, you can dispute the incorrect information and raise your credit score. The proof is in the numbers: 60% of Credit Sesame members see an increase in their credit score; 50% see at least a 10-point increase, and 20% see at least a 50-point increase after 180 days.* 3. Consolidate Your Debt With a Better Loan So now you’ve appealed to the better angels of your creditor’s nature, and you’ve gone over your credit report with a fine-tooth comb and a magnifying glass in search of errors you can dispute. Now what? Your next step is to take your high-interest debt and consolidate it into a single loan with a lower interest rate. One payment per month is way easier to keep track of than three or four, right? That means fewer chances to be late on a payment, which means fewer opportunities for your credit score to take a hit. And best of all: The lower interest rate means you’ll be spending less money on your debt in the long run. Through Upgrade, you can borrow between $1,000 and $50,000, at interest rates of 7.99% to 35.89%, depending on your credit history. What if you’ve been turned down for a loan? Wouldn’t it be helpful to have access to advice on how to improve your credit to be approved next time? And wouldn’t it be nice to have free credit monitoring thrown into the deal? Those are some of the benefits of going with Upgrade, an online lending platform.  Upgrade will throw in free credit monitoring, alerts and educational features. If your loan application through Upgrade is denied, these credit tools will still guide you to improve your credit to help you get approved in the future. Now you’ve got three tactics you can use to get your credit score right where you want it. Good luck — you’ve got this! This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
0
130

Give Your Kids the Gift of a Good Credit Score by Adding Them to Your Card

click photo for more information
Give Your Kids the Gift of a Good Credit Score by Adding Them to Your Card
Teaching your kids how to fail is one of those underrated parenting skills. By making mistakes in a controlled, safe environment, kids can learn coping skills before they incur real-world consequences. That’s particularly true when it comes to teaching kids about finance. Those lessons can have an important impact on your child’s future. A Penny Hoarder survey found that one-third of adult respondents did not grow up discussing basic personal finance topics, such as credit scores or debt. The result? For those with no early financial literacy, 40% had no savings at all, compared to 17% for the group that did discuss finances. One important lesson that you can teach your kids is how to use credit responsibly — before they get credit cards of their own.  Wondering if you should get your pride and joy a credit card? Here’s why and how to do it so they can learn how to handle credit responsibly. Should Your Kid Get a Credit Card? Although it might not seem like a priority, getting your child a credit card helps them build credit history. Pro Tip You can help protect your child’s credit score from identity theft by checking their score periodically, or at least by the time they turn 15, when the score may become more relevant. Credit history makes up 15% of your credit score, which will become important to your kids in the future if they want to finance a car, buy a house or possibly even get a job. And unlike other factors — like credit utilization or credit mix— there’s no way to improve your credit history other than with time.  But simply allowing your child to sign up for a credit card presents two problems:  They may not be ready for the responsibility of handling credit and could end up thousands of dollars in debt, thus wrecking the credit score you wanted them to build. They probably can’t qualify for a card … because they don’t have a credit history. That’s where you come in. You can cosign on your child’s credit card or even consider adding your child to your credit card to build credit. Which one should you choose? Should You Be a Cosigner or Make Your Child an Authorized User? Choosing between becoming a cosigner or making your child an authorized user starts with their age — you cannot apply for a credit card until you’re at least 18 years old, so that’s the earliest age you could be their cosigner. But becoming a cosigner on your older teen’s credit card makes you legally responsible for the debt if they miss a payment, according to Todd Christensen, an Accredited Financial Counselor and education manager with MoneyFit.org.  “The problem is, cosigners are not usually 100% involved in the billing process — they do not see, typically, the monthly bill,” he said. “So often, a cosigner will be contacted six to 12 months after a payment is missed, and then be requested to make all the back payments plus fees, and this is in the meantime hurting their credit.” Pro Tip The CARD Act of 2009 made it more difficult for people under 21 to get a credit card. However, there are plenty of cards that are marketed specifically to college students who can prove they can pay. Adding your child as an authorized user means they aren’t receiving the privileges (or reward points) of having their own card — they’re essentially just carrying your card. For most issuers, an authorized user doesn’t even get a separate credit card number. That also means your kids are depending on your credit history to build theirs. If your payment record isn’t so great or you have concerns about your ability to keep up with your credit card balance, you way want to consider the cosigner option when your kids get older. But if you’re ready to teach your kids by showing them what a responsible card holder looks like (that’s you), adding them as an authorized user is the better choice. Here’s why. Adding Your Child to Your Credit Card to Build Credit  By adding your child as an authorized user on your card, they can learn to handle a credit card in a low-risk way.  “It’s a great opportunity to build credit,” Christensen said. “It doesn’t cost [parents] anything. It doesn’t affect their credit at all.” The minimum age for adding your child to your credit card depends on your credit card company — many have no minimum age requirements at all — and some premium cards charge a fee for adding an authorized user, so check your issuer’s terms and conditions before adding your child. Pro Tip Seven years is typically the amount of time needed to establish a good credit history, so adding a very young child as an authorized user won’t do much to help their score. “I typically recommend it especially in the late teens,” Christensen advised. You can track your child’s spending instantaneously by setting up text alert messages for all credit card transactions or less frequently by checking your account activity daily. Still unsure if you can trust your kid with the plastic? You don’t actually need to tell them they’re getting the card.  “I’ve done that with my own kids,” Christensen said. “I had them as an authorized user on my wife’s and my card for several years, and they never knew it until they turned 18.” FROM THE DEBT FORUM Travel Trailer Debt 6/25/19 @ 5:31 PM Suze Orman says CAR LEASES are always a BAD financial move - do you agree? 4/18/19 @ 3:47 PM debt from a scam/fraud 6/18/19 @ 6:57 PM C credit card trouble again 6/24/19 @ 5:20 PM a See more in Debt or ask a money question Even though his daughter wasn’t aware she was building her credit history, Christensen noted that she ended up reaping the benefits of having that credit history. “When my daughter went to apply for a car loan after she moved out, one of the credit ratings had her in the 700s because she was an authorized user on our accounts,” he said. Additionally, if you’re using the card to teach your older kids about handling credit cards responsibly, by allowing them to be authorized users on your card, they can reap the benefits of building credit — and make a mistake without putting your own score in danger. Pro Tip As long as your child uses the card responsibly, don’t remove them as an authorized user until they get their own credit card and have had a few years to build that credit history. “If their credit goes south, it should not make it onto [your] credit rating,” Christensen said. “But even if it did, a simple dispute online will have it removed.” Ready to give your kids the chance to learn but aren’t sure where to start? Check out The Penny Hoarder Academy’s Credit Cards 101 course and this post on how to use a credit card as guides for teaching them about using credit in a responsible way. Tiffany Wendeln Connors is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. Read her bio and other work here, then catch her on Twitter @TiffanyWendeln. This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
1
212

Earn Cash Selling Clothes From Your Closet With These 6 Online Resale Shops

click photo for more information
Earn Cash Selling Clothes From Your Closet With These 6 Online Resale Shops
Truth time: My wardrobe embarasses me. It’s not because I dislike the things I wear — it’s because I have so many things I don’t wear. Since cleaning out my closet and attempting a capsule wardrobe experiment a few years ago, I’ve unfortunately regressed to my old ways — and by “old ways,” I mean my closet is overflowing with things I just don’t wear often enough. In fact, I would guess that at this point, about 60% of my wardrobe is simply taking up space. But I’m ready to simplify again, and, in the process, I’m hoping to make a little extra money. So, I’m heading to the internet (because my local consignment shops are — shall we say — choosy) and selling my clothes in an effort to earn back some of the money I’ve carelessly funneled right into my closet (again). 6 Places to Sell Clothes Online These are the sites I’ll use to try and make a few extra bucks as I clear out my wardrobe. 1. Poshmark Poshmark touts itself as a “fun and simple way to buy and sell fashion.” And while “fun” may be an accurate descriptor, “simple” really isn’t — but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. You see, Poshmark is more than just an online platform for selling clothes — it’s a “social marketplace.” Rather than being a place where sellers can list an item, hope it sells and move along, Poshmark is powered by buyers and sellers who share fashion ideas and styling tips, browse each others’ “closets” and generally connect over clothing and fashion. What Poshmark isn’t? A set-it-and-forget-it type of site. In order to make sales on Poshmark, you need to upload quality photos, write thorough descriptions, offer style guidance, “attend” buying and selling events within the app, share and promote listings and interact with other users. Pro Tip Some successful Poshmark users recommend investing in nice packaging or thank you cards to keep your ratings up and your listings more visible. Buyers are allowed to negotiate prices, but you can choose to decline or accept an offer. For sales under $15, Poshmark takes a flat commission fee of $2.95. For sales of $15 or more, you’ll keep 80% of the profit. Once a sale is made, Poshmark will provide you with a pre-paid, pre-addressed shipping label. All in all, Poshmark is a good option for anyone who’s willing to do a little (virtual) legwork. 2. thredUP ThredUP is an online consignment and second-hand shop focusing on brand-name clothing for women and children — and it couldn’t be easier to use. If Poshmark is the most involved clothing selling site on the market, thredUP might just be the least. Sure, your return may not be quite as big as if you steamed, photographed and listed each piece individually all while liking, commenting and sharing other people’s items, but for the lazy among us, thredUP couldn’t be more convenient. Debra Wallace, the woman behind the blog Zero, also notes the small return as a con of selling on thredUP. “Used clothing is not worth much,” she writes. “So if you’re looking to make more money, you’ll have to put in more effort” using other sites or brick-and-mortar stores. For anyone who’s still on board, thredUP’s process is pretty simple: Go to the “Clean Out” tab on thredUP’s website and select “Order a Kit.” You can then choose whether you’d like to receive a standard clean out bag or an expedited one. (There’s also an option to just donate a bag of clothing, if you’d prefer to do that.) ThredUP will then send you a bag that you’ll fill with clothes, seal up and return for free with a prepaid shipping label. ThredUP will then sort through your clothes, list the keepers on the site and, depending on which clean out option you chose, either recycle or return the unwanted items to you. Depending on whether your items are highly trendy and in season or have a little more longevity to them, thredUP will determine whether to give you the money up front or when the item sells on consignment. Once your payout becomes available, you have to cash out via PayPal. 3. Swap.com Swap.com is similar to thredUP in a lot of ways, except it also accepts and sells men’s clothes and even kids’ toys and a few household items. To sell your unwanted clothing on Swap.com, you can either request an “inbound box” or simply print a prepaid shipping label to use for sending in your items. Once the company receives your items, it will price them, upload them to the site and send you your payout after your items sell. Similar to thredUP, any items not accepted for resale will either be sent back to you or donated, depending on which option you choose. FROM THE MAKE MONEY FORUM Sell photos 6/24/19 @ 3:40 PM Earning Money 6/24/19 @ 1:18 PM A Make Money Asking Questions On Quora 4/26/19 @ 12:28 AM Employment in the trades 6/20/19 @ 11:41 AM See more in Make Money or ask a money question 4. Instagram If you’re an avid Instagram user, you’ve probably stumbled across more than one person selling their “closet” on the popular app. And while it’s a clunky interface for buying and selling (sales are done through the comments under photos and via direct messages), the return is pretty good because no commissions or fees are shaved off the top. Still, selling your clothing on Instagram will take a bit of legwork on your part. You’ll have to know how to work the system (lucky you, we have some tips right here!), and you’ll have to go through the trouble of steaming (it helps), photographing and listing each piece individually. You’ll also have to be totally in charge of collecting payments and shipping the items. All in all, though, it’s a great option for those who are willing to go the extra mile to make the extra dollar. 5. Tradesy If you want to sell your clothes on a platform that’s just a little bit more seller friendly, (but still not quite as involved as Poshmark) Tradesy is the way to go. Tradesy says it deals primarily in designer and luxury items, but technically you can sell any brand from Xhilaration for Target to Gucci — and any item from purses to wedding gear. To sell on Tradesy, all you have to do is take a few photos of an item (Tradesy will even do a little editing for you to make it look better), add a description and input a price. (Again, Tradesy is pretty helpful and will suggest a selling price if you’re at a loss.) When an item sells, you can use one of Tradesy’s complimentary shipping kits to ship the item at no cost. Tradesy’s flat commission fee is a little steep: The company takes $7.50 of any item sold for under $50. If an item sells for $50 or more, Tradesy takes 19.8%. The process is a little more involved than just loading up a bag and sending it off in the mail, but with a little bit of work, your payout can be pretty good — as long as you’re selling at the right price point. 6. eBay You thought we were going to leave eBay off this list for a second there, didn’t you? But we couldn’t do that! Even though it’s been around for quite some time (and sometimes has a reputation for being unwieldy or a little outdated), eBay is still a valid option when you’re selling clothing — especially when you’re looking to make a few bucks on so [...]
1
154

How I Made $1,500 Collecting Soda Cans During My Work Breaks

click photo for more information
How I Made $1,500 Collecting Soda Cans During My Work Breaks
You can make money selling wine bottles and corks, but what about soft drink and beer cans and bottles? Yes, you can make money through aluminum can recycling, as well. Let me tell you a true story. When I worked in a Michigan casino, we had a soda machine in the break room. Blackjack dealers get a 15-minute break every hour, so it was a well-used machine. Every hour on my break, I gathered the empty cans and plastic bottles left on the tables and plucked them from the top of the trash can. I rinsed them in the break room sink and put them in plastic grocery bags, 25 in each bag. I took home three to five bags after each shift. Why? In Michigan, all carbonated beverage containers can be returned for a 10-cent deposit, so I was walking out of that break room with $7 to $13 every shift. By the time the casino management removed the soda machine a year later, I had made an extra $1,500 collecting cans and bottles on my breaks. And that’s in addition to the returnable drink containers I gathered from other sources. I did well enough, but not as well as another man I met — he paid his entire rent from the empties he collected. Here’s how you can also make money recycling cans and bottles. Aluminum Can Prices at Scrapyards and Recycling Centers If you live in one of the states without a deposit law, the only drink containers worth bothering with are aluminum cans. Aluminum can prices at scrapyards and recycling centers around the country vary, but not much. A recycling center in Fairfield, Ohio, is paying 33 cents per pound for anything 50 pounds and over, and a scrap metal buyer in Salt Lake City is paying 38 cents per pound. Prices go up and down but are usually similar throughout the country at any given time. With approximately a half-ounce of aluminum per can, or 32 cans per pound, that makes each one worth about 1.7 cents. Although there are some people making a living collecting cans in the streets, it isn’t a good living. When my wife and I lived in Tucson, we saw people with garbage bags full of hundreds of cans they had collected from parks and garbage bins, but at less than 2 cents each, even a thousand cans is nothing to get excited about. The Best Prices: Bottle Deposits For most of us to get motivated to collect cans and bottles, they have to be worth substantially more than a penny or two. That’s why the best aluminum can prices are in states with “bottle bills,” laws requiring a deposit. Michigan, like Oregon, has the highest standard deposit at 10 cents. Most other states with such laws have a 5-cent deposit, although some require higher deposits on larger cans or liquor bottles. Ten states and one U.S. territory have deposit laws: California Connecticut Hawaii Iowa Maine Massachusetts Michigan New York Oregon Vermont Guam If you live in an area with deposit laws, you probably already know the routine. In Michigan, stores have to redeem your empties for the deposit if they carry that brand, even if that particular can or bottle wasn’t purchased there. Most of the larger stores now have can and bottle sorting machines that you load yourself (though this can be sticky work). Once you run your empties through the machine, you get a ticket to cash in at any register. So is there really much money in this? Well, there was that man I met who paid his rent by collecting empties in the streets. But for most of us, returnable beverage containers are just a way to make a little extra cash. FROM THE MAKE MONEY FORUM Sell photos 6/24/19 @ 3:40 PM Earning Money 6/24/19 @ 1:18 PM A Make Money Asking Questions On Quora 4/26/19 @ 12:28 AM Employment in the trades 6/20/19 @ 11:41 AM See more in Make Money or ask a money question Where to Search for Extra Aluminum Cans Want to do it without resorting to digging through trash cans in parks? Try these places to look for extra cans. Concerts At outdoor music venues, people toss their empties left and right while partying in the parking lot. In northern Michigan, I spoke to a couple who said they made more than $100 in a couple of hours by driving their pickup truck into the parking lot of a concert and loading up the back with all of the empty beer and soda cans there. Of course, it probably took another hour to run all those empties through the sorting machines at the grocery store. Any outdoor concert venue might be worth checking out. Festivals In Traverse City, Michigan, I spoke with can collectors who come from out of town just to make money during the National Cherry Festival each summer. With half a million visitors in one week, it isn’t surprising that there are a lot of empties to pluck off the grass and picnic tables. It might be worth looking into nearby festivals if you live in a state with a deposit on beverage cans and bottles. Friends and Family Your friends and family are another good source of returnable empties. I once returned 700 cans for a friend who didn’t want to deal with the pile in his garage; we agreed to split the proceeds, and I kept $35 of the $70. If family members or friends don’t like to return their empties, you might drive a route to a few homes every two weeks to pick them up. It’s a very earth-friendly thing to do, and a few dollars in cans at each stop might add up to enough money for your time. Antique Cans If you happen to be collecting empties in a garage or barn that has been around for a while, keep an eye out for certain old cans. Some antique collectible beer cans are worth $35 to $1,000. Regular aluminum can prices range from 1.7 to 10 cents each. Steve Gillman is the author of “101 Weird Ways to Make Money” and creator of EveryWayToMakeMoney.com. He’s been a repo-man, walking stick carver, search engine evaluator, house flipper, tram driver, process server, mock juror and roulette croupier, but of more than 100 ways he has made money, writing is his favorite (so far). This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
1
194

Spotted: A Bigger Southwest Credit Card Bonus for In-Flight Applicants

click photo for more information
Spotted: A Bigger Southwest Credit Card Bonus for In-Flight Applicants
Sometimes the most lucrative sign-up bonuses aren’t available online. We spotted this sign-up bonus for the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card in the wild world of in-flight reading materials. • Offer: Earn 50,000 points after you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open. • Seen: June 15, 2019,... Meghan Coyle is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: mcoyle@nerdwallet.com. The article Spotted: A Bigger Southwest Credit Card Bonus for In-Flight Applicants originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
1
146

Alaska Airlines Credit Card Adds Discounts for Lounge Access, In-Flight Purchases

click photo for more information
Alaska Airlines Credit Card Adds Discounts for Lounge Access, In-Flight Purchases
Bank of America® and Alaska Airlines recently rolled out new perks for cardholders of the Alaska Airlines Visa Signature® credit card. New and existing cardholders get 20% back on Alaska Airlines in-flight purchases and a 50% discount on lounge day passes when they pay with their Alaska Airlines Visa Signature® credit card. Here’s what you... Meghan Coyle is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: mcoyle@nerdwallet.com. The article Alaska Airlines Credit Card Adds Discounts for Lounge Access, In-Flight Purchases originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
1
153

Getting Paid to Start Fires: How a Park Manager Landed His Dream Job

click photo for more information
Getting Paid to Start Fires: How a Park Manager Landed His Dream Job
In his dream job as a Florida park manager and “burn boss,” Tony Clements wears a lot of interesting headgear. A Florida Scrub Jay bird mask when entertaining kids, a gorilla head while goofing around pretending to be Bigfoot, and, on a more serious note, a flame-retardant helmet when he’s scorching patches of earth during a prescribed burn. Clements is also janitor, ecologist, meteorologist and construction manager — all while overseeing the 1,400-acre Oscar Scherer State Park. But long before Clements landed his dream job, he worked as a paperboy, dishwasher, landscaper, car washer and air-conditioning installer, among other occupations. It took a lot of persistence and perseverance to get him where he is today, but his wide smile  and infectious laugh behind a beard with a touch of grey tells you it was worth it. Here’s How to Land Your Dream Job (Whatever it May Be) Clements’ fondest memories from his childhood in Wales are exploring the forest behind his parents’ barn, digging for insects and tracking birds. He conjured these memories after a bad breakup in his 20s led to the existential dread that he needed to find a real job. “All the jobs I had were great,” he says. “But I needed a career.” So, he looked to the Florida State Parks system, which seemed like the perfect fit for someone enamored with the outdoors. “I knew I wanted to make a difference and do something that I wake up every day excited to do,” Clements says. One problem: They weren’t hiring. So, he did what he recommends anyone trying to land their dream job should do and started volunteering. After a couple years, he applied for an assistant park ranger job and got turned down. Then he was turned down again. And then a third time for good measure. “You have to be persistent,” said Clements, who got the job on his fourth try. Now, he’s been park manager for 14 years. He even met, and married, his wife in the park. FROM THE MAKE MONEY FORUM How to earn money with simple idea! 6/8/19 @ 8:25 AM Fundrise 6/5/19 @ 11:35 AM I Saving money 5/28/19 @ 9:09 AM B Make money apps 5/28/19 @ 9:09 AM B See more in Make Money or ask a money question But what if you don’t know what your dream job is? John Sheehy, Career Development Coordinator at Stetson University, says first think about the things you absolutely don’t want to do for a career and work from there. Start with a wide view: Don’t want to work outside? Consider occupations that are indoors. Then refine that: Can’t stand sitting down all day? A desk job probably won’t be a good fit. Now think about your specific talents and interests and create a list of fields that tap into those skills but still avoid your “not gonna do it” criteria. “Talk to professionals in multiple areas of the fields you have interest in,” he said. Here are a few ways to feel out a career or company: Job shadow days and informational interviews: You can use LinekdIn to reach out to a company to request a day to shadow someone on the job. The firm will likely allow it even if they’re not hiring. Use a networking cover letter for this purpose. Internships: These may be unpaid — or offer crummy wages — but will help you get your foot in the door at a company. Actually digging in and doing the work should help you decide whether a particular path is for you. Here’s a guide to land any internship. Co-ops: These are similar to internships, but are usually paid and last for multiple semesters while you’re in college. They also generally provide college credit. Volunteer positions: Clements credits his years of volunteering at Oscar Scherer for helping him land his dream job. Now that you’ve zeroed in on a field, you need to meet people in the industry. Networking can help you refine your knowledge of a certain field and forge connections that could yield a job one day. Thinking about a career move? Check out The Penny Hoarder’s list of the Best Jobs of 2019 that Don’t Require a Bachelor’s Degree. Sheehy compares it to starting a fire. “Work on getting multiple pockets of embers glowing in several areas and then when it’s time, fuel the fire, add the kindling to get the fire red hot,” he said. That means you need to keep up regular communication with your network; you can’t let these relationships get cold. And finally, remember to be patient. You’re not going to fall right into the dream gig. But once you get that first job in your chosen field, you can start climbing the ladder. “Dream jobs are rarely the first job one acquires, and knowing that will assist in working your way to it in the future,” Sheehy said. Facing Reality — and Maintaining Perspective Surely some folks dream about working on Wall Street and making boat loads of money. But, for many people, a dream job is more about the work and less about the cash — and that can require sacrificing some comforts. For Clements, who makes $46,000 a year, it’s meant making meticulously planned trips to the grocery store. Every week, his family knows exactly what they’re going to eat, and therefore exactly what to buy. “They say we throw away a third of the groceries we buy,” he says. “Which is crazy.” Clements is lucky on one front, though: He doesn’t pay rent or a mortgage while living in a house at the edge of Oscar Scherer park. Even if your dream job doesn’t pay much in general, you should always advocate for yourself and push for fair pay in the hiring process. Do your research on what the job pays in similar markets, and use these tips to help negotiate a better salary. Above all, if you’re lucky enough to land your dream job, remember to focus on both the “dream” part as well as the “job” aspect. You’ll have to work hard and make some sacrifices, but you’ll be doing what you love. Starting Fires and Living His Dream On May 31, Clements got a call at 5 a.m. A storm had torn through the park and landed a branch on a tent in the camping area. He rushed to the scene, chainsaw in hand, to remove the tree limb.  But Clements’ best days at work are when he gets to be the burn boss, overseeing prescribed burns. These are man-made fires that support the forest’s ecology by mimicking natural wildfires and burning up dead leaves that could send a wildfire out of control and into surrounding neighborhoods. The weather has to be perfect for a prescribed burn, and Clements has to think through any scenario in which something goes wrong. He puts together a 40-plus page manual that outlines each event. “You need to be ready for the fire to bite back,” he says. When he’s not overseeing prescribed burns or asking — extremely politely — that a patron puts his dog on a leash, he relaxes with his wife, son and daughter (when she’s not away at college), along with their two chocolate labs (Mocha and Brady), bunny (Bun-Bun), fish, chickens and Leopard tortoise. The family spends a lot of time rehabilitating animals they’ve found injured in the park. As a kid, Clements would spend afternoons climbing trees and weaving through the woods in Wales trying to track down robins or goldfinches. Now he spends his days exploring his own forest in his own backy [...]
1
172

Chase Launches Student Credit Card in Branches Only

click photo for more information
Chase Launches Student Credit Card in Branches Only
If you’re a college student who isn’t ready to throw a graduation cap into the air just yet, take a look at the hat Chase just tossed into the ring. A few months ahead of the new semester, the issuer has launched Chase Freedom Student, a credit card designed for those still in school. As of June 9,... Melissa Lambarena is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: mlambarena@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @LissaLambarena. The article Chase Launches Student Credit Card in Branches Only originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
1
219

8 Iconic American Products No Longer Made in the USA

click photo for more information
8 Iconic American Products No Longer Made in the USA
TIvanova / Shutterstock.com Is anything really “Made in the USA” anymore? Yes, actually. Quite a lot is. American manufacturing has enjoyed a resurgence since the Great Recession of 2008, and there are as many manufacturing jobs in the U.S. as there were in the post-WWII days of 1949. Some companies even are returning their manufacturing to America, although manufacturing workers today... [...]
1
147

Got Credit Card Debt? Paying Biweekly Could Save You Hundreds on Interest

click photo for more information
Got Credit Card Debt? Paying Biweekly Could Save You Hundreds on Interest
It happens every month: The credit card bill is due. You dutifully send your minimum payment on the due date — but watch the balance grow ever larger. But what if you could pay half that amount every two weeks instead of one payment every month? More payments, you say? Thanks, I’ll pass. But what if the new payment schedule could save you hundreds of dollars? Biweekly payments are a simple way to reduce your balance and the amount you pay in interest. Here’s what you need to know. How Do Biweekly Payments Work? You may have already heard of — or received offers for — biweekly payment plans for debts like your mortgage. Here’s how one works: Let’s say your monthly payment for a debt is $500. If you pay that amount each month, you’ll make 12 payments each year for a total of $6,000. If you make biweekly payments, you pay $250 every two weeks. But because there are 52 weeks in a calendar year (thanks to that wacky Gregorian), you’ll make 26 half payments or 13 full payments each year, for a total of $6,500. That reduces your principal by $500 in one year and thus reduces the amount of interest you’ll pay on the remaining balance. Depending on how much you owe and how your debt is structured, you could shave months or years off of a payment plan. An amortization schedule is a table listing regular payments for the life of a loan. Each amount includes a little more toward principal and a little less toward interest as your balance goes down. You can check out your loan’s amortization schedule and online biweekly payment calculators to see just how much you’ll save by paying off principal early. How to Decide if a Biweekly Payment Plan Is Worth It There are three questions to ask about your debt before switching to a biweekly payment plan, according to Brian Walsh, Certified Financial Planner and manager of financial planning at SoFi, a personal finance company: 1. What is the interest rate on the debt? Before you start planning out a new payment schedule, you should first know if it’s worth your effort. That starts with knowing how much interest you’re being charged on a debt. “We consider good debt as anything with an interest rate below 7% and bad debt, anything with an interest rate above 7%,” Walsh said. Rather than paying off  “good debt” early, you can often put your money to better use by investing in IRAs, 401(k)s and other accounts that offer a higher interest rate than the one you’re paying. Pro Tip Considering biweekly payments for a student loan? Current interest rates on direct federal loans for undergraduates is 5.05%, while Direct PLUS Loans for parents or graduate students is 7.6%. So if you have a mortgage charging 5% interest and an IRA earning 8%, you’ll make more money in the long term by continuing with your current monthly debt payment plan and putting that extra money toward your IRA. But if you have an auto loan charging 9% interest, you should consider a biweekly payment plan to pay down that debt faster. 2.  Are there any prepayment penalties associated with the debt? Before starting a biweekly payment plan, review loan contracts to be sure it doesn’t include a prepayment penalty. If it does, you’ll be charged extra for paying off a loan or a large portion in a single payment, which could offset any benefits you reap in interest savings. 3. Can you apply the extra payments toward principal? This question typically requires you to simply tell your lender — via phone, email or letter — that you want extra payments applied toward your principal amount, not the interest. That allows you to pay down the debt faster and avoid paying extra in interest. When it comes to meeting all three criteria, there’s typically one debt that’s a clear winner, according to Walsh. “Whenever we come across credit cards, to me, that’s a no brainer,” Walsh said. “People should be setting up biweekly and more frequent payments when it comes to a credit card.” Why You Should Set Up Biweekly Credit Card Payments If there’s ever a chance you’ll carry over a balance from month to month on your credit card, biweekly payments can save you hundreds in interest, according to Walsh. A grace period is the time between when a statement closes and the due date. The 2009 Credit Card Act requires that if a credit card company offers a grace period, it must last at least 21 days. The problem with credit card debt is that unless you pay off the full balance every month, you lose the grace period credit cards typically offer and start accruing interest on a daily basis. By making biweekly payments, you’ll not only knock out more of the balance, you’ll avoid accruing additional interest in those 14 days between payments. Why Biweekly Mortgage Payments May Not Be Worth It So credit card biweekly payments may sound all well and good, but what about knocking out most people’s biggest debt, the mortgage? Not so fast, say the experts. Using a biweekly payment plan to pay down your mortgage typically isn’t the best financial decision, according to Jason B. Ball, a certified financial planner with Ball Comprehensive Planning in West Linn, Oregon. To illustrate this, Ball offered a scenario using the example of a house purchased for $300,000 with a down payment of $50,000 and an interest rate of 4.2%:   Traditional Monthly Payment Biweekly Payment Payment Amount $1,256.97 $628.49 Total Interest Paid $182,510.84 $153,169.81 Pay-off Date 30 years 25 years, 8 months Here’s how much you can expect to save by making a biweekly payment as opposed to a traditional monthly payment: Interest: $29,341.03 Time: 4 years, 4 months “In our example, it looks to save about four years,” he wrote in an email. “It is also interesting to note that most people do not live in their home that long. The typical buyer could be expected to stay in a single-family home roughly 12 years before moving out.” Yes, you’d save on interest (although not as much if you move out before you finish paying off the mortgage), but Ball notes that at 4.2%, you could put your extra payments to better use by investing that money in higher yielding investments like a 401(k). And although it might make you feel better about not having a mortgage hanging over your head (and there are other benefits to paying off your mortgage early), there’s a good chance a paid-off house won’t help you out that much financially even if you do decide to stay there when you retire. “If you put all your money into your mortgage, you may be house rich at retirement, but you need to look at how you will turn that asset into a monthly paycheck at retirement,” Ball wrote. “Typically, pre-paying the mortgage yields a lower probability of retirement success than other options.”   FROM THE DEBT FORUM What is the best way to consolidate my credit cards into one payment 6/5/19 @ 7:03 PM My townhome is just a money pit 6/4/19 @ 4:48 PM Senior Couple drowning in debt 1/22/19 @ 9:44 AM B Great Student Loan payoff apps. 5/8/19 @ 4:44 PM See more in Debt or ask a money question Should You DIY Biweekly Payments? So you’ve weighed the pros and cons, and you’re ready to put yourself on a biweekly payment plan. Now what [...]
1
199

Want to Get Paid to Deliver Food? Here’s How to Get Started in 3 Minutes

click photo for more information
Want to Get Paid to Deliver Food? Here’s How to Get Started in 3 Minutes
The workplace as we know it is changing… and now I’ll tell you the sky is blue! Seriously, though, as you’re well aware, the gig economy is booming. That means earning a paycheck doesn’t have to happen within the walls of your 9-to-5. In fact, some people do away with it altogether and take up several side jobs, instead. One of our favorite options? You could get paid to deliver food with Postmates, one of the few app-based side gigs that will pay you 100% of your earnings. That means there are no annoying service fees, booking fees or transaction fees to deduct from your pay — the money you worked for goes directly into your pocket. All of it. And because there will always be someone who wants a milkshake but doesn’t want to drive to go get it (ahem… me), your money might add up faster than you think. Getting started only takes a few minutes. Land Your Next Side Gig In Only 3 Minutes It took us about three minutes to sign up when we tried it. But it could be less, honestly, if you happen to speed through it. What’s great about signing up to join Postmates’ fleet is how simple the process is. You don’t need to stress about the hassle of scanning in forms of identification, and you can forget about finding the right lighting to get a photo of your license verified. So what do you need? Just your driver’s license and Social Security card nearby — unless you already have both those numbers memorized, in which case you’re a God-tier human. After that, you’re all set to provide this basic information and authorize a (free!) background check: Email address First and last name Full address and phone number Vehicle type and drivers license number Social Security number and date of birth Then, you upload a selfie, and you’re done. Fini. Terminado. Once you complete the sign-up process, Postmates will ship you a welcome kit (a free delivery bag and a prepaid card to make your purchases) to help get you set up for deliveries. Link the card to the Postmates Fleet app, and you’re off to earning extra money. Postmates lets you decide how much or little you want to drive, and when. So in a way, you’re your own boss. And because this is so epic, I’ll say it again: you get to keep 100% of your earnings, tips included. (That’s where it differs from other apps.) Pro Tip To maximize your earnings, deliver during Postmates’ recommended weekday peak hours of 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. Demand is always high on weekends, so log some hours then, too! Whether you’re on two wheels or four, you’re welcome to deliver takeout, groceries or alcohol. Just, you know, make sure you have enough room to hold the requested items. So, Cliffs Notes: You can get started in three minutes or less; you get to keep 100% of your money; and no one even has to get in your car. No awkward small talk, for the win! The Postmates Fleet app is free, and it’s available on iOS and Android. Creating an account is easy, so you’ll be making extra money before you know it. Beep beep! Farrah Daniel is an editorial assistant at The Penny Hoarder. She tested the sign-up process for this article and is excited to receive her welcome kit. This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017. [...]
1
158

My Favorite Cute Summer Tops for Women (all from Amazon!)

click photo for more information
My Favorite Cute Summer Tops for Women (all from Amazon!)
Looking for some cute summer tops for women that are inexpensive and durable? Here are 3 of my favorite summer tops from Amazon that I have worn over and over again in the last year! 3 Cute Summer Tops From Amazon As you likely well know, I love finding great clothing deals at great prices on Amazon. And I love sharing those great finds with you all! In today’s post, I want to share 3 summer tops for women I purchased from Amazon and absolutely love! All of these have held up well to multiple washings, are very comfortable, are inexpensively priced, and fit well. This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here. 1. Amazon Essentials V-Neck T-Shirt These tees come in a two-pack for $18.50 shipped (Less than $10 each shipped!) and they are some of my favorite v-neck tees! They are soft, fit well, but aren’t too tight. You can wear them tucked in or left out. I prefer to tuck them in and wear them with a belt or to do a half tuck. I got the navy/turquoise set (see the two pictures above). This particular set is currently out of stock, but they have a lot of other colors available in this same style and price. 2. Made By Emma Short Sleeve Chambray Shirt I adore this shirt and usually always wear it at least once a week! It’s lightweight, soft, and so comfortable. You can wear it untucked for a casual look, tucked in for a more tailored look, or with a cardigan or jacket. Many of the reviews on Amazon say that it runs small. I have on a small here and that’s the size I usually wear. It’s possible that some of the larger sizes aren’t as true to size. The only drawback of this shirt is that Amazon doesn’t offer free returns on it and it’s $14.97 + $4.99 shipping.   3. WLLW Crew Neck Sleeveless Shirt This is another shirt that I wear almost weekly! And it’s just $15.99 shipped or less (depending upon what size and pattern you choose). It comes in a number of different patterns and colors. One thing I wanted to mention is that some of you have ordered this and some of you said your shirt was a bit darker than mine was and you felt like the material looked different than mine does. The good news? This shirt has free returns, so if you order it and don’t like it, you can easily return it — completely free (Amazon will email you a shipping label to return it). Note: Many of you asked about the shirt I have on underneath this tank. It’s this halter top bralette and I really love it for halter top tanks! How to Search for Clothes on Amazon Be willing to dig. It’s not always easy to find what you’re looking for at first. Sometimes, you have to put in specific search terms to find exactly what you’re looking for. Don’t give up within a few tries; it’s probably there if you’re willing to dig! Use as specific of search terms as possible. If you know a brand name and specific type of what you’re looking for, be sure to include those details in the search terms. Amazon carries a LOT of brands and you might be surprised what you find and the prices they are offering. Look at the related searches. If you find an item you love, be sure to scroll down on the page to see the “Related Searches” items + the “People Who Bought This Also Bought” selections. In both cases, I’ll often find some great options there that I might not have found just by searching. What To Check For Before Making a Purchase Check if they offer free returns. Many clothing items on Amazon offer free returns. This means that if you don’t like the item for any reason, you can go on Amazon and request to return it. They’ll send you a free shipping label so you can return it and get your money back. Read the reviews. I learn so much by looking at the reviews. You can often also see pictures of the actual item on someone. This is really helpful! Always check the shipping price. Many clothes ship free to Amazon Prime members. Make sure you check the shipping price before falling in love with something — because sometimes it won’t be free and might be as high as $5-$6. Look to see where something is made/ships from. Some of Amazon’s clothing ships from China and takes 4-6 weeks to arrive. Be aware of this when you are looking at items — especially if you are hoping to get them within in a few days. Two other tops that didn’t make it to my top 3 list, but that I also love and wear often are the two above shirts: FOMANSH Color Block Tee (this one looks a tad different than the one I have on above but Amazon says it’s the one I have — it has free returns in case it shows up looking different!) Vemvan Striped Block Tee (comes in a number of different colors and is just $15.99!) Other Places to Get Great Deals on Clothes Your Closet — Don’t run out and get something new because “you have nothing to wear” without first checking your closet. There might be a dozen items in there you’ve not worn for awhile just because you forgot about them! Save yourself a trip to the store plus the money for new clothes by making sure you’re wearing what you already own! Thrift Stores — Thrift stores are a gold mine of deals, if you have the patience to dig and look. Approach it like a treasure hunt, have strict guidelines for what you are looking for, and make sure Swap Meets with Friends — Get your group of girlfriends together and have everyone bring what they no longer love, need, fit into, or wear and swap out clothes. This is a fun way to freshen up your closet — for free! TJ Maxx — I’ve found lots of great deals at TJ Maxx over the years. You never know quite what you’ll find, but it’s a great place to find deals on basics like camis, socks, scarves, and workout clothes. Target — Target often releases great coupons through their cartwheel app that can be paired with items from the Clearance Racks. This can make for great deals! Zulily — This is an online daily deal site that has lots of sales on ladies’ clothing. If you like certain name brands like Under Armor or Tom’s, check out this site for their regular sales. Note: The shipping tends to be high on this site and it takes quite awhile for you to receive your items in the mail. What are YOUR best tips for finding great deals on clothes? I’d love to hear! Other Related Links: How I’ve Simplified My Wardrobe The Outfit Formulas That Changed My Life My Completely Honest Review of Stitch Fix Putting Me Together (no-fuss fashion for moms) Get a FREE Month of Rocksbox Jewelry [...]
1
195

10 Purchases You Should Not Put on a Credit Card

click photo for more information
10 Purchases You Should Not Put on a Credit Card
wavebreakmedia / Shutterstock.com Many credit cards offer a slew of incentives to consumers who use them — from cash back and other rewards to zero liability in case of fraud. But credit cards are not always your best form of payment, especially if you aren’t great with debt. In many cases, you are better off keeping the plastic tucked away. For some readers, this advice comes too late. [...]
1
240

Paying Off Debt On One Income

click photo for more information
Paying Off Debt On One Income
Have you struggled with paying off debt — especially if you’re living on one income? These are some great tips and tricks on how to pay off debt in creative ways! {Need more encouragement? Read about finding contentment in the pit of debt, what to do when it feels like you’ll never get out of debt, how to overcome discouragement when you’re in debt, and how to stay motivated when you’re paying off debt.} Guest post from Ali of Meanwhile at Naptime: Debt is a killer. Unfortunately, our family has lots of it. We did a lot of things wrong our first few years of paying off debt… but this past year, we were able to pay off $32,000 (in addition to our mortgage payments), and it feels so good! How we got all that debt… Graduate school! The majority of our debt is student loans. We floundered a bit our first year or two after graduation, making minimum payments and telling ourselves it would all work out somehow. After a year of minimum payments, our debt was even higher as we couldn’t even keep up with the interest. We buckled down, made a plan and wrote up a budget. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by debt follow these tips to become debt free on a one income! Why We Decided to be a One-Income Family: I want to be a stay at home mom. I had a degree and a job, but once our daughter was born, I knew where I wanted to be. After moving across the country for graduate school, we had no family to watch our baby and childcare costs were so high that it just didn’t make sense for me to work anyway. We are both happy with this decision and we have been able to reach our financial goals on one income and here’s how we did it. How We Paid off $32,000 on ONE Income! If you’re interested in how to pay off debt, here are some of the tactics we used to help pay down our massive sum of debt… 1. We Implemented a Zero-Sum Budget You must have a budget. No way around this one. If you want to pay down your debt you have to tell your money exactly where to go. A zero-sum budget is simple, your income – expenses = 0. If you have any money left over at the end of the month you are not done. You must tell that money where to go. All our leftover money went to our student loans. 2. We Prioritized Our Debt Getting out of debt is our number one financial goal. We wrote down all our money goals — ALL of them. Then we prioritized and dropped those that wouldn’t fit in this year. We placed our student loans at the top. Sometimes when motivation started slipping we had to ask ourselves, would I rather go out to eat or be debt free? With that as our goal, we were able to keep ourselves on track each and every month. 3. We Put Our Entire Tax Return Towards our Debt We didn’t keep any of it — once that money came in, we threw it right at the debt! 4. We Used a Pay Raise to Increase Debt Payments With our budget in place, we knew how much money we spent on things like groceries and utilities. When my husband got a raise, the only numbers that changed were our debt payments and our savings. 5. We Put Any Bonuses Towards Deb Payments Any time we got a bonus at work, we put ALL of it toward our debts. 6. We Canceled Subscriptions When creating our budget, we had to make some sacrifices — subscriptions were one of the first things to go. For instance, I had been getting HGTV magazine for years. It was hard to say goodbye; but now, a year later I don’t miss it at all. Similarly, this year, we’re dropping Netflix to see how much closer we can get to our goal. 7. We Skipped Vacations We decided that we could have fun at home without a vacation. It was a tough decision but we saved hundreds of dollars by skipping the vacation this year. Create a family bucket list full of free or cheap ideas instead of a family vacation this year (see below!) 8. We Found Free Family Events Honestly, this one was one of our favorite “sacrifices”. By looking for free events we got to know our community quite well and saw how much our own city has to offer. Our local radio station has been a great resource for finding free events. We also checked with our local parks department, local schools, and we signed up for a community newsletter. As a result, we’ve been to museums, zoos, and even got a family caricature done for free! Take the time to look for free or cheap events and you won’t be disappointed. 9. We Sold Our Stuff Online Chances are there are plenty of things in your house that you don’t use or even need. Sell them online to make some extra money. We did… and as a result, we were able to refill our emergency fund and free up some cash for more payments! Final Thoughts on Paying Off Debt on a Single Income The hardest part is staying motivated. It’s hard to see your money go to payment after payment. We had to regularly remind ourselves of our desire to be debt free to keep us going. Now looking back, our year of paying off debt was actually a lot of fun — and SO worth it. We made many sacrifices, we followed a strict budget, and we prioritized our debt. We worked hard and found lots of ways to save money too — and as a result, we paid off $32,000 in just ONE year, living on ONE income! I am forever grateful I get to stay home with my babies every day. We’re still working on our debt, and hoping to do EVEN BETTER this year! What are your best tips for how to pay off debt on one income? Ali is a stay-at-home mom to three kids. She is mastering the art frugal living and helps stay at home moms learn how to control their finances while running a home. Read all about mom life and frugal living at Meanwhile at Naptime. [...]
1
163

NerdWallet’s Best Credit Cards for Transit Spending

click photo for more information
NerdWallet’s Best Credit Cards for Transit Spending
More than three-quarters of Americans commute by car, but millions of people also use public transit and other shared forms of transportation to get to work. Whether it’s bus/train/cab fare, rideshares, tolls or parking, you may spend hundreds of dollars a month just getting around. Thankfully, several credit cards offer bonus rewards specifically on those costs. Even general travel cards that... Sara Rathner is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: srathner@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @sarakrathner. The article NerdWallet’s Best Credit Cards for Transit Spending originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
1
203

The Lowdown on New Tools to Jump-Start Your Credit

click photo for more information
The Lowdown on New Tools to Jump-Start Your Credit
The rules for achieving a decent credit score haven’t changed much since credit scoring was invented: Pay all your bills on time, don’t use too much of your available credit and build a long history of responsible behavior. But credit novices and those looking to rebuild after missteps now have two new tools they can... Amrita Jayakumar is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: ajayakumar@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @ajbombay. The article The Lowdown on New Tools to Jump-Start Your Credit originally appeared on NerdWallet. [...]
1
195

These 8 Strategies Will Help You Pay Down Credit Card Debt When You Retire

click photo for more information
These 8 Strategies Will Help You Pay Down Credit Card Debt When You Retire
Ah, retirement. Lazy days in the hammock, bucket list trips to Europe, leisurely drives in your sports car. Wait, you’ve spent more time jettisoning ideas than planning jet-setting excursions? Despite your best savings efforts — and unexpected expenses — those idyllic retirement plans may have run into the stark reality that you didn’t end up with the nest egg you had planned on. In fact, you’re headed toward your golden years with credit card debt. Employee Benefit Research Institute.  In 1992, 53.8% of families with the head of household ages 55 or older had debt. By 2016, that number had climbed to 68%. Unfortunately, it’s a nationwide trend, as families just reaching retirement or those recently retired are more likely to have debt — and higher levels of it — than past generations, according to a study by the Without your former income, you may be starting to worry about making the growing credit card payments on a fixed income, particularly when the average Social Security monthly benefit is $1,461. Putting a dent — permanently — in credit card debt when you’re retired is possible, and we have seven ways to help pay off your debt so you can enjoy that hammock. 8 Ways to Help Pay Down Credit Card Debt in Retirement Retirement offers unique opportunities and challenges when you’re paying off debt. You may have new sources of income, like Social Security or a pension, and new expenses, like increased healthcare costs or fun stuff like travel. So here are eight post-employment strategies that can help you pay down debt. 1. Make a Budget Tackling credit card payment as you approach retirement starts by re-examining your budget. Making changes to your lifestyle and using your free time to save money is a good place to start, according to Joseph Valenti, senior policy advisor with the AARP Public Policy Institute, in Washington, D.C. “One thing we know from studies of retirement is that people have fewer set costs typically compared to when they were working,” he said. “If they have more time, maybe they will be preparing more meals at home.” If you need help creating your budget, check out our step-by-step guide to budgeting or learn the basics in our Budgeting 101 Academy course. Once you know where you stand financially, you can start looking for ways to cut the credit card balance. 2. Negotiate With Credit Card Companies The best way to know where you stand is to look at the numbers — in this case, the interest rate on your cards. It’s easier to pay down a debt if you’re accumulating less interest on top of the original amount (learn more about compound interest in our Credit Cards 101 Academy course). Asking your credit card company for a new rate is one option, particularly if you’re ready to commit to living credit card-free going forward, Valenti said. “In some cases, even if you close that card, they will let you pay it down for little or no interest over a period of time,” Valenti said. “That’s assuming you don’t need the card again.” Pro Tip When you call the credit card company, the first person you talk to may not be able to help you, even if they think they can. Ask to speak with a manager who handles settlement arrangements. Check out this post for more tips on negotiating credit card debt. And if you’re too overwhelmed to deal with the creditors themselves, consider reaching out to a credit counselor, who can help you organize your accounts and may negotiate a lower interest rate for you. 3. Transfer Your Balance to a New Card Loyalty isn’t necessarily rewarding. If you’ve had the same card for years, transferring your balance to a new card could give you a lower interest rate than you current provider can offer. Reap the most benefits by paying down as much debt as you can during the promotional period. When you’re considering which card to go with, compare this information for all offers: Fees (typically at least $5 to $10 or 3% to 5% of the balance) Interest (look for 0%) Duration of the promotional APR (usually 12 to 18 months) Credit score requirements (generally good or excellent) Credit limits (make sure it’s more than your current balance) Here’s what else to consider before transferring a balance. 4. Cut (Former) Work-Related Expenses Still hanging on to that gym membership, even though you only signed up because it was close to your office? By reviewing your monthly, periodic and annual budgets, you may discover work-related expenses that have become so habitual you’ve forgotten about them, according to Valenti, who gave transportation, clothing and cell phone expenses as examples. Cancel subscriptions to professional associations and other automatic billings associated with work (an ink cartridge subscription, for instance) to avoid unwanted surprises at the end of the month. If you have trouble keeping up with recurring payments, try using a subscription tracking tool. And if you still enjoy hitting the gym, cut costs by asking about senior discounts — AARP has many for its members. 5. Set Up Self-Imposed Limits Before retirement, those little expenses that broke your budget one month may have been easier to cushion with your regular paycheck. And remembering them all may have been a little easier a few years ago. To help you track the expenses and avoid unwanted surprises at the end of the month, Valenti suggested setting up alerts from your bank or credit card provider. “It’s one thing to find out instantly through a text that you’ve reached a limit — even if it’s a self-imposed limit — as opposed to a statement that’s going to shock you at the end of a cycle,” Valenti said. 6. Ask for Professional (Financial) Help If you’re overwhelmed by managing your day-to-day finances or fear forgetting to pay bills and sinking further in debt, consider hiring a daily money manager. In addition to tracking bills, daily money managers can help you with balancing your checkbook, collecting tax documents, dealing with medical bills and even avoiding scams. Pro Tip Your bank must protect two months’ worth of Social Security benefits from a credit card collector’s garnishment. If your account has more than that, the bank can garnish or freeze the extra money. Depending on where you live, a daily money manager may charge $75 to $150 an hour. However, the American Association of Daily Money Managers provides a list of state agencies that provide services to low-income and disabled seniors.   7. Make Extra Money on Your Empty Nest Now that the kids have moved out (hopefully), you’re stuck with that big, empty house. One option for making money is to sell it and downsize to a smaller place, then use the profits to pay off credit card debt. But moving still requires an outlay of cash and can add additional stress as you’re adjusting to retired life. If you’re seeking something a little less drastic, think about new ways to use your house — and its contents — to earn some cash today, advises Moira Somers, a wealth psychologist based in Winnipeg, Canada, and the author of “Advice That Sticks: How to Give Financial Advice That People Will Follow.” “Look at the resources you have and say, ‘Could this turn into money somehow?’” she said. “One of the cool things about this period in our life is that there are sometimes ways we can make extra money that wouldn’t have been possible even 10 years ago — the whole AirBnb thing, for example.” If you’re looking to make some money on your extra bedrooms, check out our post about how to become an Airbnb host. And don’t forget about all those buried treasures in the attic. (Did you know that Urban Outfitters sells five-packs of random VHS tapes for $40? Yeah. That’s a thing.) One of the cool things about this period in our life is that there are sometimes ways we can make extra money that wouldn’t have been possible even 10 years ago. Somers notes ta [...]
0
184

HELOC: Understanding Home Equity Lines of Credit

click photo for more information
HELOC: Understanding Home Equity Lines of Credit
  A home equity line of credit, or HELOC, is a second mortgage that gives you access to cash based on the value of your home. You can draw from a home equity line of credit and repay all or some of it monthly, somewhat like a credit card. With a HELOC, you borrow against your... The article HELOC: Understanding Home Equity Lines of Credit originally appeared on NerdWallet.   [...]
1
194