Give Your Retirement Savings a BoostBy: Heidi Davis, CFP®
What Are Individual Retirement Accounts?
An Individual Retirement Account, or "IRA", is a personal savings plan that gives you tax advantages for your retirement savings.
Social Security is not designed to fund all of your retirement income. So, the IRA is an incentive by our government to help you save and control your own funds for retirement.
How Would an IRA Benefit You?
The main benefit of an IRA is that it gives your retirement savings a "boost" in its long-term growth. And the growth of your IRA is generally not taxed until after you retire. So, this may increase the value of your savings compared to savings in an account that is subject to taxes.
Contributions into an IRA may also fully or partially reduce your income, which may provide you with lower income taxes. In addition, you may be able to receive a "Retirement Savings Contribution Credit" if your income is not more than $55,500.*
How Much Can I Save?
An IRA allows you to save up to $5,000
Blog Posts by Quizzle.com
- Quizzle.com | Work + Money – Mon, Aug 29, 2011 4:38 PM EDT
Give Your Retirement Savings a BoostBy: Heidi Davis, CFP®Read More »from Boost Your Retirement Savings with Individual Retirement Accounts
Home Improvements: Why You Should Make Them NowBy: David BakkeRead More »from 5 Reasons to Invest in Home Improvement Now
With the end of the recession nowhere in sight, you may have pushed those home improvements and renovations you've been wanting to make to the bottom of your priority list.
However, now might actually be the best time to invest money in your home. With cheaper loan rates, contractors, and building materials, there are plenty of ways to save money on your home improvement projects by taking advantage of the current market.
Here are five reasons why you should start tackling your home improvements today, way before you even think about selling.
1. Low Home Equity Loan Rates
You've probably heard this phrase a lot lately: "Rates are historically low right now." But it really is true, especially when it comes to home equity loans. Contact your lender to find out the rate you're eligible for and ask if you qualify for a "relationship discount" (i.e. for loyal customers who have account balances totaling a certain amount).
2. Reduced Energy Expenses
When you spend money
Whole Foods Coupons and Money-Saving StrategiesBy: Kate ParhamRead More »from How to Save Money at Whole Foods
For #9 in series about how to save money at the nation's largest retailers, including CVS, Kroger, Walgreens, Target, Safeway, Rite Aid, Walmart and Albertsons, we're looking at a grocery store that many of you will likely be surprised to hear offers several ways to save money: Whole Foods Market.
The Austin-based supermarket that emphasizes natural and organic foods placed third on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's list of Top 25 Green Power Partners - all the more reason to shop there! For those of you who are skeptical, take a look at how you can save money while shopping at this green market:
Sales Cycle: Whole Foods sales cycles run Wednesday through Tuesday, meaning that advertised sales prices change on Wednesday. Whole Foods also offers a monthly ad, called "The Whole Deal," which you can find on their website or at the store. The Whole Deal highlights "Sure Deals" - high-quality, popular pantry items with great prices - and contains coupons,
Buy a New Home or Remodel?By: Kristie Lorette
In a housing market that has gone haywire, many homeowners are debating within their own heads or even aloud with spouses or roommates: should we move or make improvements to the home we already own? The truth of the matter is that more homeowners are choosing to stay and fix up their own home rather than move - even though the price of buying a new home is relatively inexpensive right now.
Find out the pros and cons of both moving and remodeling so you can make the decision that is right for you and your family:
What's Your Home Value?
Your first mission is to determine the current value of your home. You can accomplish this a couple of different ways:
- Contact your real estate agent to find out the value of comparable homes in your neighborhood.
- Visit some open houses in your area and compare those that are similar in square footage and condition to your own home.
- Check your home value estimate online to get an idea of what your home is worth.
Read More »from Buy a New Home or Remodel Your Existing One?
How to Garage SaleBy: Nick FadoirRead More »from What Not to Buy at a Garage Sale
Yard sales can be great. Cruising the community, taking note of all the many lawn sales sporting massive amounts of bargained merchandise is mighty enticing. And in these trying economic times, shopping for bargains and buying used is one of the easiest ways to save money without completely cutting off your spending valve. What's more is the quality may be equal if not better than what you'd buy at the store! You might even get a cute little backstory of your purchase thrown in, free of charge.
Yet, certain things should never be bought used. Bad deals happen, but bad deals that threaten you or your child's life shouldn't. Avoid buying these items at your neighborhood garage sale:
Only two months ago, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) issued new regulations for baby cribs. Under the new regulations, drop-side cribs - a standard of the nursery because it made parentel access to the infant easier - are now illegal. According to the CPSC, from
- Quizzle.com | Work + Money – Mon, Aug 22, 2011 7:22 PM EDT
Secrets of the Wealthy from the World Wealth ReportBy: Benjamin GranRead More »from Personal Finance Lessons from the World Wealth Report
Capgemini and Merrill Lynch recently released the latest version of their annual World Wealth Report (as discussed in this New York Times article), an analysis of the latest trends affecting the world's wealthiest people, giving an overview of the state of high net worth individuals worldwide, discussing how they are investing their money, and how they feel about the economy.
We might not all be as wealthy as the participants of the World Wealth Report survey, but perhaps there are some lessons here to see how the world's wealthiest people are managing their money.
Findings from the World Wealth Report include:
There are more wealthy people than ever before.
In 2010, there were 10.9 million people in the world who had at least $1 million in investable assets, also known as "high net worth individuals" (HNWIs). (The term "investable assets" means that they have $1 million in addition to their homes and belongings.)
If all of these HNWIs lived together in the same
Credit Scores: Men vs. WomenRead More »from Credit Score Battle of the Sexes
By: Bill Rice
As I was browsing through my Facebook News Feed I came across this quote: "A successful husband is one who makes more money than his wife can spend. A successful woman is one who can find such a man!" It wasn't the first stereotype I've heard characterizing women as frivolous spendthrifts. The question was: Is it true?
Naturally, being the curious sort about all things credit and personal finance I consulted the Internet.
My findings in the Credit Score Battle of the Sexes might force you to update your comedy act.
Survey of Credit Demographics
In a survey conducted by credit website Quizzle.com of more than 800,000 Americans, men averaged a credit score of 590 and women a slightly lower 582, revealing a very narrow gender gap.
The insignificance of this difference in credit scores led me to investigate a deeper question:
Where might this credit gap be trending for the future?
My first step was to look at credit score potential - or how much a person can
How to Save Money at AlbertsonsBy: Kate ParhamRead More »from How to Save Money at Albertsons
And the money-saving saga continues… We're up to retailer #8 in our series about how to save money at the nation's largest retailers, including CVS, Kroger, Walgreens, Target, Safeway, Rite Aid and Walmart.
This time, we're looking at shopping strategies for Albertsons, a North American grocery chain with more than 240 stores located in Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas and Florida. The "Albertsons" name is used under license from SuperValu, which operates 463 grocery stores in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Louisiana, Nevada, Southern California, Florida and certain parts of Utah. Here's what you need to know about Albertsons before shopping:
Sales Cycle: Albertsons' sales cycles run Wednesday through Tuesday, meaning that advertised sales prices change on Wednesday. Albertsons also offers a monthly ad called the "Big Book of Savings," which you can find inside the store or online.
Bonus: Top 5 Places to Find Coupons
Buying a Foreclosed Home at AuctionBy: Kristie Lorette
A foreclosed home can offer you a bargain basement price as a homebuyer, but what about the pitfalls that comes along with buying these types of homes? There are risks associated with buying a home in foreclosure and when you buy the home at an auction, the risks tend to increase. Learn what you are getting into before you to take the leap and how to recognize red flags, so you can avoid common mistakes.
Research County and State Rules
Each county and state handles its foreclosure auctions differently. Some counties still hold live auctions on the steps of the county courthouse, while others have moved their auction process online. Some of the information you need to research before bidding on a foreclosed home at an auction includes:
- Bidding process;
- Amount of deposit you need to bring to the auction;
- The auction location;
- Whether the current homeowners have the right to try to get their property back after the auction sale.
The best way to Read More »from How to Buy a Foreclosure Home at Auction
Secrets of a Top Credit ScoreBy: Ann-Marie MurphyRead More »from Secrets of the 800+ Credit Score Club
It's a Catch-22. If you have bad credit, you pay more in interest on home loans, auto loans, credit cards and more, making it more challenging to make your payments, get out of debt and improve your credit score. On the other hand, if you have good credit, you pay less in interest, increasing the likelihood that you can manage your monthly payments, keeping your credit score high and in tact.
The truth is, no matter what your credit score is now, you can achieve the "platinum standard" of credit - a score above 800 - and nab yourself the best deals on life's largest purchases.
As your average 30-something, I've been in debt, struggled to pay bills and never had a substantial income to bail me out. But, the one thing I do have (now, anyway) is a credit score of 808. And I'm here to tell you my secrets:
Never miss a payment.
I've never had a payment reported as late on my credit report. This is crucial to your credit score. Payment history makes up about a third