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8 ways first-time homebuyers can make themselves mortgage-ready
(BPT) - It’s rare to get something right the very first time you try it, but when it comes to buying your first home, a lack of knowledge and experience can lead to costly mistakes. One in four first-time homebuyers say they are completely unfamiliar with the mortgage financing process, accord ...
How will the Affordable Care Act affect your 2014 taxes? [Infographic]
(BPT) - The Affordable Care Act brings a lot of changes to this year’s tax code that will affect 25-30 million people. What’s most important is to know how your taxes may be affected. People who will see the biggest impact fall into two categories: 1. had insurance through the marketplac ...
7 common tax return blunders to avoid
(BPT) - Although tax laws change every year, you can count on certain things to be timeless. That includes the same common mistakes taxpayers with simple and complex returns make every year. Knowing what those common errors are will help keep you in the clear. 1. Not reporting all of your income. Em ...
Cultivating financial confidence: Study finds women have more to learn when it comes to retirement planning
(BPT) - Women today are incredibly competent when it comes to juggling career, family and personal obligations. Despite feeling confident in their ability to multi-task, it appears that managing their long-term finances may be taking a back seat to short-term priorities.Seventy-five percent of women ...
What's your path to retirement happiness?
(BPT) - Retirees have a message for people still working but wondering what life might be like once they retire: “Come on in, the water’s warm.” But they also say that it pays to plan, the earlier the better, because retirement might come sooner than you expect.A recent study, spon ...
Busted: The truth about top cellphone myths costing you real money
(BPT) - Most people today have a cellphone that rarely leaves their side. In fact, cellphone usage is at an all-time high, with 91 percent of adults owning one, reports the Pew Research Center. While the technology has drastically improved many aspects of daily life, the cost of devices and service ...
10 tips to safely sell a car online
(BPT) - Looking for a new set of wheels? Need to raise some cash for a home improvement project? Heading back to college?Last year, a whopping 42.5 million used cars were sold in the United States, many by private owners. And 94 percent of those transactions involved an online search, according to l ...
This 30-minute check could increase your retirement savings
(BPT) - When is the last time you checked in on your retirement plan? A month? A year? Can you even remember? If you can’t, you’re not alone. Many people find the idea of reviewing their retirement plan intimidating, so they put it off. You can’t avoid reviewing your plan forever, ...
Creative college savings: Unique scholarships to help offset rising costs
(BPT) - Does the cost of higher education scare you? If so, you’re not alone. College tuition prices have skyrocketed. Over the past 30 years average tuition and fees at public four-year institutions rose by 225 percent, according to The College Board. Factor in room and board, books and livin ...
5 tips to help savvy Latina moms raise financially smart kids
(BPT) - Latina moms juggle many priorities. You are entrepreneurs growing businesses, community leaders advocating for change, and still caring for children, parents and spouses who all rely on you for guidance and support. As part of this role you also need to make sure your children are embracing ...
Tax time tips: How to combat tax identity theft fraud
(BPT) - April 15 is quickly approaching, and while receiving a tax refund may be the first thing on your mind, there’s one important issue to think about: tax fraud. Tax-related identity theft occurs when your personal information is stolen and used to file a tax return claiming a fraudulent r ...
Research study uncovers small business predictions for 2015
(BPT) - Small business owners can easily get caught up in the December rush. But once the holiday sparkle fades, business owners and entrepreneurs will need to refocus and make decisions likely to impact their business in 2015.Before coming to any conclusions, entrepreneurs should be aware of some b ...
Ready, set, file: Helpful tips for choosing DIY tax preparation tools
(BPT) - Tax season is officially here. Last year, 40 percent of Americans chose to file their own taxes – but not all do-it-yourself tax preparation tools are created equal. For those consumers who like to sit in the driver’s seat when filing, here are five tips for what to look for when ...
Why women need to reassess retirement planning
(BPT) - Men and women are not the same when it comes to retirement planning. Consider this: A husband and a wife of the same age, earning the same salary and looking to retire during the same year need to account for different factors in retirement planning. This is true even if they share a househo ...
Time-saving hacks impatient people use to maximize every minute
(BPT) - Do you routinely honk at the car in front of you, pass slow walkers on a sidewalk or press an already illuminated elevator button in hopes of getting to your destination sooner? If so, you’re not alone. The hectic nature of modern life means more people are impatient to squeeze the mos ...
How to secure the home loan you need
(BPT) - Springtime represents new beginnings and is the prime time to get the house in order. Whether you’re looking to make a first-time purchase, refresh an existing home or simply leverage built-up equity for other reasons, it’s important to figure out which path is right for you and ...
How to maximize your tax refund and cut monthly expenses
(BPT) - Tax season is in full swing and everyone is hoping for a refund from Uncle Sam. What will you do with yours? Whether it’s several hundred or several thousand, if you use your refund smartly, it can provide the jumpstart to boosting your budget and living financially well this year and ...
Car buying and selling simplified: Insider secrets to avoiding hassles and saving money
(BPT) - Having a car is a necessity for most people, but buying and selling one shouldn’t cause headaches and waste time. Industry insiders know there are steps that can help both buyers and sellers maximize their investment while minimizing stress.“The process of buying or selling ...
Honking, speeding, hanging up - how impatient are you really? [Infographic]
(BPT) - As it turns out, we’re not as patient as we’d like to think. Curious to know how you stack up? If so, quickly follow this infographic to learn more about the habits of impatient people – you might be surprised.
Is a line of credit right for your business?
(BPT) - From time to time, your small business may face revenue swings, prompting you to borrow money to meet your short-term cash and working capital needs. One option is to secure a business line of credit.The Small Business Administration defines a line of credit as a loan given by a financial in ...
Will the Affordable Care Act impact your taxes? Myths debunked
(BPT) - There are a lot of changes to this year’s tax code – 46 to be exact – as a result of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). What’s most important is to be aware if your taxes – and your annual refund – will be affected.Tax experts at H&R Block address common m ...
5 tips to slash prescription drug costs
(BPT) - Today’s rising health care costs can feel out of control. Fortunately, prescription drugs are an exception. Consider these five simple ways to save money on your prescriptions so you can stay healthy and maintain your budget.1. Ask about generic or lower-cost equivalents.Your health pl ...
The 6 smartest money moves Millennials can make in 2015
(BPT) - Money worries know no age limit, and financial health is important for everyone – which could explain why financial pledges are among the most common New Year’s resolutions. Still, Millennials are a bit more likely than any other age group to be tempted into spending too much, ac ...
Engage a financial professional to boost your bottom line
(BPT) - Women today are enjoying a hard-won sense of independence. While there are many aspects of a woman’s life that can be successfully navigated alone, when it comes to financial planning, a collaborative approach is best.Women are increasingly taking control of household finances, but the ...
5 financial fitness habits to begin in the new year
(BPT) - While many people focus on personal health goals in the new year, the beginning of the year is also a great time to check your financial fitness. So how can you whip your finances into shape?South University College of Business, Virginia Beach faculty member Dr. Alan Harper says everyone sho ...
Hoping to retire in 10, 20 or 40 years? Here's what you need to know now
(BPT) - American workers, ages 32 to 64, are $6.6 trillion short of the amount they need in order to retire comfortably, according to Retirement USA. When it comes to planning ahead and saving money early, time is of the essence. However, 63 percent of American workers have less than $1,000 saved fo ...
3 tips to create and stick to your financial goals this season
(BPT) - Holiday sales are expected to reach more than $600 billion this year, an increase from 2013 according to the National Retail Federation. For the average household, that equates to spending $804 on gifts - up 5 percent from last year. And rest assured retailers will be pulling out all the sto ...
Learn about this home improvement that can save you money
(BPT) - For many homeowners the biggest utility bill is electricity. Heating and cooling the home makes up nearly half of electricity costs, but the next biggest source is the water heater. Water heaters can account for up to 25 percent of total household energy use. Taking steps to improve the ener ...
How the Affordable Care Act may affect your tax refund
(BPT) - The Affordable Care Act (ACA) brings a lot of changes to this year’s tax code. Do you know if and how it will affect your tax refund?Here are five tips from H&R Block to help you understand how your taxes and tax refund will be affected as a result of the biggest tax code change in ...
Tax hints every investor should know
(BPT) - Contrary to popular belief, having investments doesn’t mean only an accounting genius can prepare your tax return. Investors can easily do their own taxes while maximizing tax savings by following a few simple tips.“Gathering all forms and information beforehand makes preparing t ...
5 easy ways to boost your budget
(BPT) - It takes time and energy to be thrifty with your money. You can clip coupons and search for online discounts to save at the stores. You can reduce your expenses and find ways to cut back on things you dont need. And you can make the most of what you already have, which might be h ...
Accountants are solving crimes and helping businesses plan for the future
(BPT) - Accounting jobs are expected to grow 13 percent between 2012 and 2022, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, with select specializations projected to grow even faster.Emerging jobs in the accounting field call for new and diverse skill sets that have not been required in the past. Tod ...
6 tips for managing your year-end tax planning
(BPT) - The end of 2014 is shaping up to be relatively quiet compared to the challenges of recent years - such as the fiscal cliff. After this year’s mid-term elections a lame duck Congress needs to fund the operations of the federal government, so it is possible new tax law changes could affe ...
How to prevent identity theft during tax season
(BPT) - It’s the time of year when Americans gather their financial documents and anxiously await news of a tax refund or debt. While many hope to get money back, Time Magazine recently reported that the IRS paid an estimated $5 billion plus in false tax refunds in 2013, and according to Bloom ...
5 money traps to avoid each month
(BPT) - Are you always on the prowl for a better deal? Looking for ways to save money – but without having to cut back on quality?People often overspend in ways they don't even realize. From service plans that aren't being used to buying too many bulk items, it is easy to throw away money with ...
Busting first-time homebuyer myths
(BPT) - When buying a first home, most people are making one of the biggest purchases of their lives. Without home buying experience, it’s hard to separate fact from fiction.“Buying a first home can be exciting and stressful for most young buyers, especially the financing process,” ...
The disappearing act: How to go from being credit invisible to credit visible
(BPT) - Are you credit invisible?You may have never heard this term before, but if you are credit invisible, then you’ve certainly felt its affects.Those who are credit invisible lack a credit score due to non-existent, limited or dated credit histories. More than 30 million Americans have bee ...
6 model behaviors for tax planning season
(BPT) - Each tax season, much is written about strategies to minimize the amount you pay to Uncle Sam. Less focus is usually given to behaviors or practices that better position you to navigate tax season.With that in mind, Robert Fishbein, a vice president in Prudential’s Tax Department, offe ...
4 things you should know about choosing your first credit card
(BPT) - Whether you are headed to college, joining the armed forces, or simply looking to take greater control of your finances, you might be wondering if it’s time to open your first credit card.Although credit cards are not for everyone, they have some important benefits you should consider. ...
How to prepare and e-file your taxes for free
(BPT) - Doing your taxes doesn’t have to be taxing. There are many programs available to help you process – and file - your taxes.Use Free File – available only at IRS.gov – and join more than 43 million people who have saved $1.3 billion in fees. You get brand-name software ...
Philanthropist shares love of farming
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Philanthropist shares love of farming
FarmHouse alumni on mission
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