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Kristen Becker owns enough clothes and shoes to outfit an entire village. She shops constantly online and visits the mall at …

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    By Candace Braun Davison

    In Your Office's Vacation Policy

    More and more companies are allowing employees to "sell" back their unused time off at the end of the year, according to The Wall Street Journal. The money is treated like an extra paycheck--with regular tax deductions--but you can also choose to receive it as a 401(k) contribution or donate it directly to charity. For the average American, that's an extra two days' pay each year.

    RELATED: 7 Ways to Create a Gorgeous Bouquet with $10 or Less

    At Your Local Gym
    There's a new way to motivate yourself to hit the gym, and it's almost as powerful as your friend announcing that she ran into Ryan Gosling there. Some health insurance companies will pay you to work out. UnitedHealthcare, for example, reimburses members $20 for every month they visit a fitness center or YMCA at least 12 times. (Planet Fitness, one of UnitedHealthcare's participating gyms, offers memberships for $10 per month.) Similarly

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  • by Cristina Goyanes for

    How are you spending your tax refund?

    How are you spending your tax refund?

    The only silver lining to spending headache-inducing hours of filling out tax papers is a nice refund. If you're expecting a check in the mail this season (congrats to you!), reward yourself with a a small portion of that rebate in a good-for-you way. Farnoosh Torabi, a personal finance expert and the host of "Financially Fit" on Yahoo! Finance, recommends five easy ways to put your money where your health is.

    1. Invest in memories, not accessories.
    Supposedly you can't buy happiness, but damn, this season's hot new bag would sure put a smile on your face. Before you say "charge it," consider this: "Studies show that buying yourself experiences-like a vacation, yoga retreat, massage, or cooking classes-leads to increased happiness levels more so than buying material things such as a sweater or car," Torabi says. If you buy a new set of wheels, your glee will fade if your neighbor buys a nicer car, but a trip to the Bahamas is more subjective and harde

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  • Kristen Becker owns enough clothes and shoes to outfit an entire village. She shops constantly online and visits the mall at least once or twice a week. She owns more than a dozen pairs of Ugg boots, and hundreds of shirts, pants and dresses.

    Does this sound familiar to you?

    If so, you may be a shopaholic. There are more than 25 million Americans classified as compulsive shoppers. How do you know if your large appetite for spending makes you a shopping addict?

    We tapped Dr. April Benson, author of "To Buy or Not to Buy: Why We Overshop and How to Stop" to walk us through the four telltale signs and how to control the urge to splurge.

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    "Compulsive buying is called the 'smiled-upon addiction' because consumption fuels our economy," says Benson. "People who are compulsive buyers are often struggling with low self esteem, emptiness, loneliness. Compulsive buying is their go-to activity to tolerate distress and regulate their emotion."

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  • Don't let these bad financial habits keep you from your long-term spending goals. Identify your weaknesses and start remedying them. Time for a Change

    A version of this article originally appeared on

    Derek E. Rothchild/Getty Images

    We know you're doing your best with your money. Sometimes, however, even the best intentions can lead us astray. With every cocktail you order at the bar, and every minute that you spend browsing the web on your mobile phone, you put your finances at risk. Don't believe us? We've got proof. These eight seemingly innocent daily moves could be jeopardizing your financial health. Are you guilty of these habits?

    More on
    Your Guide to Saving Money

    1. You move every single year.

    According to U.S. Census statistics, approximately 20 million Americans change addresses each year, and since moves are often prompted by a life change, like getting married or having a baby, we often end up spending money on things we don't anticipate. These purchases can run

    ...Read More »

  • Photo: Thinkstock

    By Lynn Andriani

    Don't Upgrade Your Mattress... April. This middle-of-spring month doesn't have any major holidays, and mattress retailers love to hold sales around days that most people have off from work or school, like Presidents' Day, Memorial Day, the Fourth of July and Labor Day. Plus, in May, manufacturers tend to mark down old models to clear them out and make room for the new ones coming in, so if you buy in April, you'll be too early to score a deal.

    RELATED: 5 Small Ways to Give Your Bedroom a Big Boost

    Photo: Thinkstock

    Don't Buy a New Grill...
    ...between March and June. As soon as people get their first whiff of warm air, they start thinking about burgers and hot dogs, which means they head out to buy charcoal and gas grills--and high demand means high prices. Leslie Wheeler, director of communications at the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association, says you're unlikely to get a great buy early in the season. Wait until after the Fourth of July or, if you can hold out, autumn, when pr

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  • Bad financial habits to ditch in 2013
    Bad financial habits to ditch in 2013

    Don’t let these bad financial habits keep you from your long-term spending goals. Identify your weaknesses and start remedying them. …