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November 2012

Money Advice for Newlyweds

Every once in a while I get asked for money advice for newlyweds.  I remember the first such advice that I received (although technically I was about to get engaged, not a newlywed).  I was visiting my fiancé’s father to ask for his support before I proposed to my future wife.  I remember 3 things [...]

Identity Theft Protection Basics

There are not many things that can ruin your day like becoming a victim of identity theft.  Identity thieves are becoming more and more sophisticated and the number of identity theft victims continues to escalate at an alarming rate.  Learning basic identity theft protection techniques can go a long way in protecting your identity. Identity [...]

Why Money Matters: The Role of Money in our Lives

Does money matter in life?  If so, what is the role of money in our lives?  Are money and wealth evil?  Should we judge others by the size of their bank account?  My personal belief is that money, while definitely not the most important thing in our lives, does play an important role. I believe [...]

Teaching Kids about Money and Personal Finance

In my profession I see way too many people with financial problems because they never learned proper principles of financial management growing up.  Schools could do a much better job of teaching kids about money and personal finance principles; however, parents have the primary responsibility of teaching their children about money and personal finance. If [...]

Saving for College

I think most people understand the value of a good college education.  However, college costs are increasing much faster than inflation.  It wouldn't surprise me if some toddlers today face future tuition bills of $200,000, which puts increased importance on saving for college now. Saving for college is made more difficult by the fact that you have [...]

Refinancing 101: Mortgage Refinance Basics

A mortgage refinance is the replacement of an older mortgage with a new home loan that has different terms.  During the refinancing process, the existing mortgage is paid off by the opening of the new mortgage refinance loan, and the prior mortgage balance is carried over to the new loan. People refinance their mortgages for [...]

Consumer Loans: Consumer Debt Basics

Consumer loans and debt result from the purchase of goods on credit that are consumable and that tend to decrease in value over time.  Using consumer debt and loans unwisely can ruin your credit and cause you to pay thousands of dollars in interest. Consumer debt may include all of the following: A credit card [...]

Umbrella Insurance (Personal Liability Insurance) Basics

I still remember the reaction I witnessed from a close relative of mine when I recommended that she obtain umbrella insurance (personal liability insurance): “Why on earth would someone insure an umbrella?” Umbrella insurance does not insure your umbrella; rather it provides extra personal liability insurance coverage that could come in handy if you were [...]

Mortgage Loan Basics

A mortgage is a loan that is used to finance the purchase of real property.  There are many different types of mortgage loans; however, fixed rate mortgages (interest rate remains constant or fixed over the life of the loan) and adjustable rate mortgage (interest rate fluctuates with overall market rates) are the most common. Most [...]

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