7 Common Life Insurance Myths Debunked

Date August 30, 2017

Many of us let popular misconceptions about life insurance convince us that we don’t need it. Read on to see how seven of the most widespread life insurance myths are easily debunked.

Myth #1: I’m single and I have no dependents. I don’t need life insurance.

Actually, you do. Every person should have funds to cover their funeral costs and end-of-life medical bills. Also, you can leave a legacy by choosing a cause to be the beneficiary of your death payout.

Myth #2: I’m a stay-at-home parent who doesn’t earn an income. My partner needs life insurance; I don’t.

The tasks that currently fill your time will need to be outsourced to hired help should you suddenly pass on. Nannies, cleaning help and cooks cost money. That money can come from the insurance payout of your homemaker’s policy.

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Video: Save Money on Back to School Shopping!

Date August 28, 2017

 

College Students: 3 Ways To Build Your Credit History Before You Graduate

Date August 23, 2017

magnifying glass showing excellent credit scoreIf you keep up with financial news, you know your credit score is one of the most important and widely circulated bits of information about you. It determines the outcome of many of your adult life decisions. The kind of car and house you can afford, the rates you’ll pay for insurance and credit cards, and even the kinds of jobs you can get all hinge on your credit score. While much of credit-building will have to wait until after graduation, there are ways you can control your credit score now: Pay your bills (and pay them on time) and keep your debts low.

1) Get (and keep) a clean payment record

Pay your bills on time. It’s good advice anyway, but if you’re trying to build a credit history, making on-time monthly payments is a critical first step. This includes both credit cards and other monthly bills (electricity, Netflix, gym memberships). Don’t have a credit card? Consider “piggybacking.” Your parents can make you an authorized user of their credit card, which will show as an account in your name and one that is being paid on time.

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Dealing With A Financial Setback

Date August 21, 2017

Financial setbacks come in all shapes and sizes. It can be an expensive household repair, a medical emergency, getting laid off or the birth of a baby. Whatever the situation, it’s impossible to plan for every financial hit you will take in your lifetime.

But don’t fret. If you’re hit with hard times, here’s some tips to keep in mind.

1.) Don’t panic

Keeping calm will allow you to think more clearly and resolve your deficit quicker. As difficult as things seem now, they’ll always look a little better after some levelheaded planning.

2.) Crunch the numbers

Sit down and work out exactly how much more money you’ll need to cover your new expense or to fill the gap of income loss.

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The Dow Jones Reached 22,000. What Does That Mean?

Date August 16, 2017

Q: Everyone is talking about the stock market hitting an all-time high of 22,000. What does this mean?

A: The stock market can be confusing. Before answering the 22,000 question, let’s start with a brief explanation on how it works.

1.) What is the stock market?

The stock market is where stocks and bonds are bought and sold. When you purchase stock, you become a shareholder and now own a “share” of the company. If the company’s profits go up or down, the value of your shares follows suit. When a company needs to raise money, it issues shares and keeps all of the money raised in the initial sale of shares. 

2.) Why are stocks traded after they’re purchased?

Traders and investors continue to trade their purchased company stocks because the perceived value of the company changes over time. The investors may make or lose money depending on whether or not their predictions on the value of the stock are correct. The ultimate goal is to make money by buying stock in companies you expect to increase in value.

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Financial Tips For Single Parents

Date August 14, 2017

Single parenting brings unique budgeting challenges.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture reports that it costs an estimated $241,080 for a middle-income couple to raise a child to age 18 – and many single parents shoulder that responsibility alone. Even with adequate child support, it’s smart to be proactive about financial matters as a single mom or dad.

Estate planning should be your first priority. It’s essential to make arrangements for your children should you become incapacitated. Draw up a will, designating a guardian for your children, and a “power of attorney,” giving someone the legal right to make decisions on your behalf.

Consider setting up a trust – a legal structure that is overseen by a trustee, in which your assets can be held for your children. Also, ask your employer about disability benefits. Generally, you will receive a smaller income when you claim disability, however, ensuring even partial income is crucial for single parents who don’t have another source of income to cover a gap.Taking out a life insurance policy is equally important. The policy you purchase will depend on your finances; a term policy is most economical because it offers a straightforward death benefit.

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The Pros And Cons Of Bridge Loans

Date August 9, 2017

If you’re looking to buy a new home, you may be counting on the proceeds from the sale of your existing home to help cover the down payment and closing costs.

What happens if selling that home takes longer than you’d anticipated? What if you need to move quickly? How will you be able to come up with the necessary funds if your home doesn’t sell quickly?

This is where bridge loans come in. A bridge loan provides temporary financing until more permanent financing can be obtained. It is granted with the understanding that, once permanent financing is in place, some of those funds will be used to repay the loan.  Bridge loans have shorter terms and are more expensive than conventional loans.

Terms of bridge loans vary tremendously. Some completely pay up the outstanding mortgage on the old home, while others only pay off a portion of it, leaving the borrower with two mortgages, or lumping the loans together.

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Money Hack: How to Save on Your Mortgage

Date August 7, 2017

 

College Jobs: On Or Off Campus?

Date August 4, 2017

 alt=Face it: You need a job. Maybe it’s just for spending money, or maybe something else is pushing you toward employment. You could need an excuse to leave campus to escape the college bubble for a short time. You could be working on your networking skills to help climb the ladder toward a “real job” in your chosen field. You might also be needing to pass the time until the next adventure comes along. There are even study benefits! A 2009 Boston University study revealed that a work schedule forces students to create a study schedule and stick to it. Without a job, many students struggle with time management. The question for today’s students, then, is: Do you work your job on campus or off?

There are many advantages to working a job on campus. For starters, depending upon the size of your college, you may be able to walk to work. Save the commute and the gas bill for your out-of-school job! The schedule may be more flexible when it comes to working around classes and big projects. After all, your employer works for the school and understands that learning is a priority. These factors can make it much easier to juggle a job with school. You can also meet many of the “behind-the-scenes” people at your school, which can get you the inside scoop on many school policies.

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Creative Ways To Save On Energy Costs

Date August 2, 2017

Are your summertime electricity bills astronomical? Check out our list of 10 creative ways to trim your bill in the summer and all year ’round!

1.) Plant trees

If your home has lots of west-facing windows, you’re likely getting loads of sunlight each afternoon, and that’s making your AC unit work harder. Lower your energy consumption by planting trees or large shrubs in front of some of those windows.

2.) Go solar

If your electricity bills are through the roof, consider going solar! MCCU offers very affordable solar financing that can save you money on your electricity bills! And, you can take advantage of the federal tax credit.

3.) Rethink your roof

Is your roof dressed in black for 90-degree weather? By installing a sunlight-reflecting “cool roof,” you can reduce your roof’s temperature by up to 60 degrees. This will trim your AC use by as much as 20%.

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