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home : life : personal finance March 28, 2017

Key retirement milestones everyone should know about
(BPT) - Retirement can seem like a very distant destination in your early working years. However, as you age, that once distant destination starts to become more real. As you enter your 50s you can really start to think about how much you have saved and how that will translate into retirement incom... More >>


Secrets smart investors use year-round to save on their taxes
(BPT) - Come tax time, many people work to locate tax breaks. While this is always a smart financial move, a little-known way to help build your net worth is to keep taxes top of mind throughout the entire year. Reducing taxes means you keep more of what you earn, according to Nick Holeman, a finan... More >>


Small nest egg, big dreams? Tips for buying your retirement home
(BPT) - Planning for retirement means making a lot of decisions, including when you’ll stop working, how much you’ll withdraw from your savings each year, and where you’ll live. Many Americans view retirement as an opportunity to move into a house they’ll love and live in for all their golden years... More >>


3 tax hints every investor should know
(BPT) - It's a common misconception that if you have investments you need to shell out a large chunk of change to have your taxes prepared by an accounting genius. The truth is, it's easy and affordable to do your own taxes and maximize tax savings - even if you're an investor.'First and foremost, ... More >>


Seniors struggling to pay life insurance premiums have options, including selling their policy
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The lowdown on low down payment mortgage
(BPT) - You would like to buy, but you can’t manage that 20 percent down payment. Does this sound familiar?The down payment is the biggest impediment to buying a home according to surveys, but in reality many individuals can qualify for a mortgage with as little as 3 percent down.It is important to... More >>


4 tips to help protect your identity this tax season
(BPT) - Tax season is a busy time for everyone. From accountants and small business owners to families and individuals, especially as more people choose to file their taxes themselves. Unfortunately, it’s also a busy time of year for cybercriminals who use the flurry of activity to swindle sensitiv... More >>


5 fast shortcuts to make your home sparkle this spring
(BPT) - We all know that one person who just adores cleaning. But for the rest of us, it's a necessary evil that gets old very quickly!Before you tackle that long list of spring cleaning tasks, try some of these cleaning hacks designed to make these chores faster and easier. When cleaning is fun an... More >>


2017 looking bright for small business owners
(BPT) - The year 2017 is still in its infancy, but research shows small business owners feel this year could be one of the best in recent memory.A new survey, commissioned by Staples and conducted by Wakefield Research, found that 85 percent of small business owners surveyed reported feeling “optim... More >>


Tips to get the most out of your HSA dollars
(BPT) - Millions of Americans with high-deductible health insurance plans rely on health savings accounts to help them manage the costs of health care. If you’re among them, you know how important it is to maximize the value you get out of every HSA dollar.If you don’t yet have an HSA, you may qual... More >>


Self-employed? Tips to help you navigate the mortgage process
(BPT) - Sponsored ad content by Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance, Inc.When you’re self-employed, you often work harder than anyone else you know. That’s what it takes to be your own boss. While rewarding, it comes with a lot of added responsibility. This is especially true when applying for a mortga... More >>


Flood insurance: Does your excuse hold water?
(BPT) - We know the old saying: when it rains, it pours… and when it pours, it floods. With winter snow storms coming to an end, the threat of flooding increases as the snow begins to melt and the rivers and creeks begin to swell. It's easy to forget about how powerfully destructive wate... More >>


5 reasons why talking about money can enhance a relationship
(BPT) - Thinking about combining finances with your significant other? Whether you’re getting married or just thinking about getting serious, talking about money can help couples understand each other and avoid unhappy surprises down the road. Here are five reasons why talking about money can enhan... More >>


Learn the basics to avoid cell phone surprises
(BPT) - It’s easy to be overwhelmed when it comes to choosing a cellphone provider. Everyone claims to offer the best, cheapest and most comprehensive service. It can be especially baffling for seniors who, despite boundless wisdom elsewhere, may be newcomers to this technology.When you boil it dow... More >>


Security in an insecure world
(BPT) - The year 2016 was devastating for some safe deposit box holders. In New York, thieves cut holes in the roofs of three banks and brazenly emptied hundreds of safe deposit boxes, leaving the victims' pillaged boxes on the roof and strewn around the vault.A stealthier thief in Florida picked s... More >>


What you should know about rising interest rates
(BPT) - Homeowners planning to refinance and buyers searching for a home may have an idea of what's in store for them with regards to interest rates, but they never really know until they lock in a rate. Rates can change direction fast, and when they rise-as they have recently-it can cost borrowers... More >>


Debt poses risks to financial security for Americans reaching their golden years
(BPT) - Americans now retire with far more debt than previous generations. This can pose a significant risk to retirees’ income, and may result in them not having enough. It also means that when a spouse dies, there could be little left over as creditors deplete an estate’s assets — forcing survivo... More >>


Where to find rebates, tax credits and rewards for energy-efficient home improvements
(BPT) - If you’re planning to make some home improvements this year, you’re probably thinking about energy-efficient options, knowing they can save you money in the long run. However, many eco-friendly home improvements that help lower your energy bills can also pay off right away in the form of re... More >>


4 reasons you should review your beneficiary designations
(BPT) - Baby boomers have been planning and saving for retirement for decades. They are also planning their legacy - creating wills, trusts and other sophisticated estate planning strategies to transfer their wealth to the next generation.However, most people may not realize their IRAs and qualifie... More >>


Paying for college: Options reduce need for student loans
(BPT) - While only a fortunate few students can expect a free college education by winning full academic or athletic scholarships, everyone can take advantage of a combination of academic aid, grants, fellowships, work-study and student loans to pay for a four-year degree, says Peter Gayle, a vice ... More >>


4 life changes that affect your taxes and how to tackle them
(BPT) - Life changes often mean tax changes. Whether it's getting married, buying or selling a home, moving abroad or having a baby, misunderstanding the tax and financial implications of these life changes can lead to taxpayers making mistakes or leaving money on the table.Depending on your situat... More >>


Top 5 tips for doing your own taxes
(BPT) - With the 2017 tax season a few short weeks away, now is the time to start thinking about your taxes, especially if you are doing your return by yourself. Whether you are a seasoned filer or a first timer, keeping a few tips in mind could help you increase the size of your refund (or minimiz... More >>


Two out of Three middle-income Americans lack a financial plan. Do you?
(BPT) - As the holidays (and all the extra spending that goes with them) wind down and the new year ramps up, many people turn their attention to their finances. While New Year’s resolutions to spend less and save more come with the best intentions, when it comes to your financial future, you need ... More >>


No will? Haven't documented financial information? Now's the time to do something about it
(BPT) - Do you want to be remembered for being a great mom, dad, daughter or son? Do you believe you’re taking the necessary steps to leave this legacy?More than half (53 percent) of respondents in a recent survey commissioned by MassMutual indicated they want to be remembered for being a great mom... More >>


Get ready for summer and warm up with hot deals at your local boat show
(BPT) - Stop dreaming about summer boating and make it a reality by finding the best deals this winter. Starting in January, boat shows take place across the country. They offer some of the best pricing and incentives of the year - a major draw for the millions of Americans who take to the water ea... More >>


6 common tax filing mistakes to avoid
(BPT) - It’s probably safe to say handing cash to Uncle Sam does not top the list of your favorite things. When it comes to filing taxes, making a small mistake can mean paying more taxes than you need to or forking over cash to cover penalties.Fortunately, there’s an easy way to make sure your tax... More >>


5 steps toward improving financial well-being in the new year
(BPT) - With the start of a new year comes New Year’s resolutions. Many will focus on physical wellness, some on organization. Now is a perfect time to take stock of your financial house and work on financial wellness, which will take off a level of stress that can immediately have an effect on you... More >>


5 ways to save money when buying a car [Infographic]
(BPT) - If you’re heading to the dealership for end-of-year deals or considering a new car in 2017, there are a few ways you could save money before hitting the showroom.The tips below highlight steps you can take to get the best deal on your vehicle, and help eliminate stress from the car-buying p... More >>


Where there is a will - and more - there's peace of mind
(BPT) - What's the state of your estate? Robert Fishbein, a vice president and corporate counsel in Prudential Financial's Tax Department, says now's a good time to find out.Changes in federal estate tax law have significantly increased the amount at which federal estate tax is triggered, says Fish... More >>


The New Year's resolution you haven't thought of yet [Infographic]
(BPT) - Have you plotted your path toward retirement? If you have, you're on the right track. Or, if you're just starting to save for retirement, the new year could be a great time to map out your savings plan!More than one-third of Americans don’t have a retirement plan in place. Even those with a... More >>


5 easy tactics for making your New Year's resolution to save money a reality
(BPT) - It’s almost that time of year again – you prepare for the holidays and start thinking about what you want your New Year’s resolution to be.According to research from Nielsen, one quarter of Americans want to spend less and save more money in the New Year. If you’re one of these people, foll... More >>


Buying your first home? Follow this New Year's plan to get fiscally fit
(BPT) - So buying a new home tops your list of New Year’s resolutions. As you picture the big moment — the one where you pull up to your dream home in your moving truck, sprint up and unlock your front door — you probably understand there's something you need to do first. You need to get your finan... More >>


Get fiscally fit in the new year [Infographic]
(BPT) - Here are four easy ways to shape up your credit score and right size your spending so you can afford your new home.SaveSave... More >>


Rebel against rogue investing and the dark side of market forces with these 7 tips
(BPT) - There is great unrest in the financial universe. The next disturbance in The Force is anyone's guess. Like the rebels in the forthcoming Star Wars film Rogue One, you seek a new hope. Fear not and reach for a promising investment future.I. Look to the setting suns.In Episode IV: A New Hope,... More >>


4 tax changes that could impact your 2016 return
(BPT) - With tax filing season upon us, it's a good idea to educate yourself on what's changed since last year. While it's been a relatively quiet year in terms of new tax laws, there are a handful of items for which you'll want to prepare.1. The Tax Deadline is April 18.This year, the deadline to ... More >>


5 things life insurance companies don't always tell you
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Shopping for small business solutions? Tech talk translations for SBOs
(BPT) - As a small business owner, you do it all: the books, marketing, customer service, product, inventory and - oh yes - tech support. In fact, small and microbusiness owners are more likely to shoulder all tech tasks for their firms, according to a study by the National Small Business Associati... More >>


3 ways to plan ahead for the 2017 tax season
(BPT) - With the tax season approaching, now is the time to start thinking about creating a strategy to help maximize tax refunds in the year ahead. From the passage of the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes (PATH) Act to the increase in health insurance penalties, here are a few items to keep in ... More >>


New wrinkles in tax strategies could help smooth your year-end planning
(BPT) - As 2016 enters its final weeks, it's a good time for year-end tax planning strategies - including some new wrinkles:Plan for 2016-2017 together: Consider reducing your overall tax liability by shifting income and deductions across 2016 and 2017. Assuming similar income for both, you can acc... More >>


5 insights into the Asian-American financial experience
(BPT) - Prudential's 2016 Asian-American Financial Experience surveyed more than 2,000 self-identified Asian Americans. Prudential's survey found that this group - one of the fastest growing population segments since 2000 - places a higher priority on family-related financial goals relative to the ... More >>


Hispanics at the forefront of digital banking trends
(BPT) - With a population of more than 55 million and estimated buying power of over $1.5 trillion, Hispanics in the United States are continuing to shape economic trends; however, as new research finds, they're shaping digital trends as well.This year's Bank of America Trends in Consumer Mobility ... More >>








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