• Credit Reports: Annual Check-Up Time!

    June 12, 2020 by

    What do you call an annual health check-up for your credit? A credit report! If you have ever used a credit card in your name or borrowed a loan from a financial institution, you have credit history. Your credit history shows whether you can be trusted with borrowing money and paying it back. Your credit… Read more

  • The Road To Recovery

    June 5, 2020 by

    Everyone tells you to “Save, Save, Save,” but no one talks about what happens if you can’t save or you found yourself in a pinch and spent all your savings. Are you doomed for a life of poverty? Not necessarily. When I worked in finance, there was a common theme in every situation I met.… Read more

  • So You Got A Stimulus, Now What?

    May 29, 2020 by

    By now, most Americans have received a boost in the form of a stimulus, in this case, free money from the federal government to combat financial woes stemming from coronavirus. Now that you have money you didn’t have before, what do you do with it? The most likely option is to spend it, as intended,… Read more

  • Spare Change

    May 23, 2020 by

    In the modern day of cashless transactions, cash still remains a popular mode of payment. According to the US Federal Reserve in 2019, cash ranks as one of the top two payment methods, used in 26% of transactions, just behind debit cards (28% of transactions). For children who don’t have a bank account yet, cash… Read more

  • The Download On Deals

    May 15, 2020 by

    What does “saving money” mean? Setting aside money for the long term is typically how we define savings, but another important discipline for building wealth is finding savings when we spend money. When you pay less than full price, you are saving money. One transaction may not seem like much savings, but many transactions together… Read more

  • Needs Vs. Wants

    May 8, 2020 by

    This week’s lesson is a short one, but a very important one: Needs Vs. Wants. Everyone has both things they want and things they need. But when faced with spending a finite amount of money, needs come first. Learning about needs and wants starts at a young age. The good news is that you can… Read more

  • “Playing” With Cash

    May 1, 2020 by

    With all the cashless ways to use money in this day and age, it’s difficult to show kids the value of a dollar. Substitutes just aren’t the same. Do you sense the same satisfaction from earning an extra $500 when it is deposited directly to your account instead of visiting the bank with a paycheck?… Read more

  • Allowance

    April 24, 2020 by

    April marks National Financial Literacy Month in the US, so why not take this time to learn (and teach) about money? It can be difficult to understand money at a young age because children cannot make money through employment like adults do. By the time children reach an age where they can work for money,… Read more

  • The Rhyme And Reason For A Roth IRA

    April 17, 2020 by

    Rap Ode To Roth IRA Here’s the thing about Roth IRAs. Pay taxes now, no delays. You won’t owe any more while your investments grow. Once you’re ready to retire, it’s ALL your money to sow! Add contributions up to the annual max, Then pick the investment(s), and see how it stacks! Don’t touch the… Read more

  • Back To Basics

    April 10, 2020 by

    As a result of the financial turmoil caused by COVID-19, there is a lot of confusion about what is the best thing to do with your money? Let’s face it. Watching a paycheck disappear or get reduced is scary. And seeing investments bounce up and down daily can be unsettling. During uncertain times like these,… Read more

  • Money Lessons At Home

    March 21, 2020 by

    Now that everyone is home due to Coronavirus COVID-19, it’s a great chance to spend that quality time together brushing up on subjects that school may not focus on, like learning about money! Here are some suggested activities that can make learning about money FUN!! Some ideas come from personal experience, but I found neat… Read more

  • Target Date Funds

    March 13, 2020 by

    Set it, and forget it! – Ron Popeil (Infomercial King, Founder of Ronco) If you are watching your savings go up and down in the stock market with a queasy stomach, you’re not alone. The natural human reaction when this is happening is to take all your investments and cash out. But that’s exactly what… Read more

  • ABC’s of Health Insurance: From HMO to PPO

    March 6, 2020 by

    With the spotlight on coronavirus, medical care and the means to pay for medical care become ever important. Just one visit to the doctor averages $200-$600, and hospitalizations cost anywhere in the tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars! Most people do not have that kind of money laying around, and even if you do,… Read more

  • Diversification

    February 28, 2020 by

    Ever hear the saying, “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket?” Just like eggs, your money is fragile. If the basket drops or breaks, you’re out of luck. That is why you need diversification. Essentially, diversification means spreading your money (eggs) into more than one investment (basket). This way, if one of your investments… Read more

  • America Saves Week: February 24-29, 2020

    February 21, 2020 by

    Next week marks an annual campaign that started in 2007 and continues this year 2020: America Saves Week. Even if you do not live in the United States, it’s a neat way to keep savings top of mind. Each day — February 24 to February 29 — is a new savings focus. And the great… Read more

  • Paying For College: Ways To Save

    February 14, 2020 by

    Last week, we examined how decisions play an important role in paying for college. This week, we look at ways to pay for college. While parents usually assume the responsibility of funding their kids’ education, kids can also be involved in saving for their own education. Let’s look at the ways to save and pay… Read more

  • Paying For College: Decisions, Decisions

    February 8, 2020 by

    At a recent speaking event, I was asked by a concerned parent, “How do I prepare financially for my kids to go to college?” As important a role as parents have in funding college, the kids have an equal if not greater role in the cost of college education. That is because the kids are… Read more

  • Insurance: The Safety Net

    January 31, 2020 by

    What sad news this week with passing of legend Kobe Bryant. Then we hear about all the deaths from the new coronavirus. If you haven’t already, take time to cherish your loved ones. Life is precious. Events like this make us stop and think: What would happen if something devastating occurred to you or one… Read more

  • Do You Need A Rainy Day Fund?

    January 24, 2020 by

    Rainy day fund. Emergency fund. Cash reserve. Call it what you prefer, but the important thing is to have one. What is a rainy day fund? It’s money set aside to weather unexpected “storms” in your life. For instance, did your car break down, and you need money for a repair? Lost your job and… Read more

  • The Case For Non-Qualified Accounts

    January 17, 2020 by

    If you have money in an account, chances are that you have at least one non-qualified account. What does it mean to be “non-qualified?” Don’t let the name fool you into thinking it’s a bad thing. Being non-qualified simply refers to “not qualifying” for any tax benefits. Any money you place into a non-qualified account… Read more

  • The Secret To Smart Investing

    January 10, 2020 by

    The old adage “Buy Low, Sell High” works great … if you have a crystal ball for every investment you make. In reality, no one can predict with absolute certainty the best time to buy or sell an investment. How do you know that a stock is at its lowest price when you buy? How… Read more

  • The Silent Partner: Cash Flow

    December 20, 2019 by

    Last week we learned that building net worth is a top goal for your personal finances. How do you accumulate net worth? Since net worth relies on assets, the key to growing net worth is to grow assets. Assets like investments help because they grow in value, but what if your investments take a downturn?… Read more

  • Your Financial Score

    December 13, 2019 by

    How do you determine how well you are doing financially? There are many money “scores” out there, including credit rating (a.k.a. FICO score) or financial independence score. But the best way to get a baseline score and track how well you are doing year after year is to calculate your net worth. Keep Score Now… Read more

  • Buying A Home: What Is In A Mortgage?

    December 6, 2019 by

    Are you considering buying a home someday? Unless you have all the cash to buy that home outright, chances are you will end up borrowing some money. A mortgage is a loan specifically used to purchase a home. Consider it the middle man if you are not buying the home with 100% cash. The mortgage… Read more

  • The 411 On 401(k) Plans

    November 22, 2019 by

    Savings accounts come in many forms, and one of the most popular in the US is the 401(k) plan. It’s essentially a piggy bank that you should not crack open until after age 59 1/2, close to retirement age for most of the workforce which is why it is often viewed as a retirement savings… Read more

  • Credit Card FAQs

    November 15, 2019 by

    Whether you already have a credit card or are thinking about getting one, it’s time to get acquainted. Here’s what you should know. What is a credit card? A credit card allows you to borrow money to make purchases and then pay back later. How much you can borrow is based on your credit, or… Read more

  • Compound Interest

    November 8, 2019 by

    In addition to the seven natural wonders of the world, Albert Einstein believed in an eighth wonder of the world: Compound Interest. What is compound interest? In a nutshell, it’s money making money. How does one unlock the door to compound interest? Through investing. The easiest way to understand investing is to think of a… Read more

  • Balancing A Checkbook

    November 1, 2019 by

    Ever wonder why the amount left on your account is called a “balance?” That’s because you should get that same number after you “balance” your checkbook. Like budgeting, all it takes to balance a checkbook is addition and subtraction. However, budgeting and balancing serve different purposes. Budgeting is about looking ahead, whereas balancing is about… Read more

  • Budgeting 101

    October 25, 2019 by

    A budget is just a fancy way of saying a “plan for your money.” Anyone receiving money on a regular basis, whether it be allowance or salary, should have a budget. This tells you exactly where your money goes, so that you only spend what you have. It’s easy to start a budget, but will… Read more

  • 5 Steps To Smarter Spending

    October 18, 2019 by

    Spending money. Let’s face it. We love to spend money, but we don’t love to talk about our spending decisions. Have you ever been in a store when a child asks, “Can we buy that toy?” and then hear a long, detailed response on all the reasons to buy or not buy the toy? Probably… Read more

  • A Life Of Sharing

    October 11, 2019 by

    You make a living by what you get; You make a life by what you give. – Winston Churchill* I spent the past two lessons on saving money, but now let’s talk about sharing money. In my opinion, of the 3 S’s – Share, Save, Spend – sharing comes first. Why? Because your saving and… Read more

  • How Much Money Should I Save?

    October 4, 2019 by

    The million dollar question (pun!): How much should I save? Well, there’s a complex answer and a simple answer. In most cases, you’ll get the complex answer. It depends. Everyone’s number is different because we each have different savings goals. Saving for a car is different than saving for a house. Saving for a house… Read more

  • A Good Four-Letter S— Word: Save

    September 27, 2019 by

    If having savings is a good thing, why does the act of saving money get such a bad reputation? Do we dread saving money because we live in a world of instant gratification and don’t have the patience to spend our money later? Maybe. Is it tough to accumulate savings when we have other bills… Read more

  • What Is The Right Price?

    September 20, 2019 by

    As a child, I grew up watching TV game show “The Price Is Right.” But often, I knew the price was NOT right because their prices reflected full retail value, and every one of those goods could be purchased for less. This begs the question: What is the right price?

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