The Nuances of Extreme Couponing Explored

They aren’t probably exaggerating when they are saying that extreme couponers can actually even dig out dumpsters in a bid to find coupons. Yes, there are families that even end up saving around 50% on their grocery bills with the help of coupons. Coupon-driven shoppers are even regarded as better shoppers than the ones who avail no coupons at all. However, there is still room for thought. Is extreme couponing really worth it? Read on to unravel.

Tricks to Avoid Financial Fraud During Holiday Season

With the busiest holiday season roundthe corner, let us tell you that it wouldn’t really be prudent on your end to concentrate solely on shopping. Financial fraud remains one of the biggest perils of the busy shopping season and buyers at large should be extra cautious to avoid such vagaries at any cost whatsoever. Today, in the course of the post we will document a series of ways with the help of which you can actually go on to make the most of safe shopping this holiday season. So, do read on in order to be duly guided.

The unstoppable rise of Bitcoin

Recently the price of Bitcoin has touched the 10,000 dollar mark and with this it seems that there is nothing that can stop the rise of this particular cryptocurrency. However, it also needs to be noted in this context that getting out of this asset, which is supposed to highly lack in liquidity, can be so much more difficult than getting in. In most cases, the money these days is electronic. It is all about a series of zeroes and ones that are there on a computer. This is why this meteoric rise of Bitcoin in the space of a year has been so praiseworthy.

Financial planning for the biggest moments of your life

In this day and age you are always going to get some major moments in your life – they will either be happy (marriage, childbirth etc.) or sad (death in family), and expected or unexpected. No matter what, you need to be prepared, and financially so, for these huge moments in your life. These funds are also known as milestone funds and as such you need to plan well for these expenses. There are a few steps that you can take so that you can be financially prepared to meet these situations in a better manner in life.

Are You Financially Ready to live on Rent?

You haven’t really relocated for your job but it’s time to move out from your parents’ home and start living on your own --- at least, that’s what you think. Finding a new home for yourself isn’t solely about living out of your parents’ shadow and performing chores on your own but it’s also about figuring out whether you are financially prepared to take the leap of faith or not. Read on to figure out why your decision to live on rent can never be made arbitrarily.

Socially Responsible Investing Decoded

What are the factors that you keep in view while making investments? Have you ever thought about it? Has “society” ever featured in your reasons behind making an investment? Is socially responsible investing even possible? We will unravel details right in the course of the post.

What is Socially Responsible Investing? Estimating its Feasibility

What exactly is socially responsible investing or SRI? Is it possible to give back to your country by making these investments at the first place?

Cognitive Bias or Mental Money Traps?

Do we ever arbitrarily regard ourselves as prudent consumers? Read this particular post before you are even close to drawing conclusions. How do we rationalize our purchases? By weighing the pros and cons of each product and then deciding which one of the options made available to us is suitable.

Financial Security in College: Exploring a Few Tips

The financial woes of college students have been an eternal area of concern. We have – time and again- come across the stories of so many students finding it so difficult to balance out government support with the rising rent, food and education costs. Even the funds from freelance gigs- it seems – have consistently failed to help them meet ends.

When Credit Cards Get Out of Control, Freedom Financial Could Help

Credit cards tend to get a bad reputation when it comes to your financial situation. They are frequently associated with high interest rates, overspending, and out of control debt. Given the fact that people use them for virtually everything now, it is easy to see how this could happen. A recent report shows that people are using their credit cards for even very small purchases such as a cup of coffee.  While this may sound surprising, there are benefits to using your credit cards, even for small purchases. Of course, if you do find that your credit card debt is out of control, Freedom Financial could help you get back on track.

Can “Overspending” be Categorized into Different Types?

What are the possible consequences of overspending? Overwhelming credit card bills? Loan defaults? Black marks on your credit report?

The evils of overspending are too many to count. And, the key to controlling your habit of overspending is to identify the kind of overspender you are. There are so many people who do not even understand that there actually are many types of overspenders – let alone figure out the kind of overspender they are. We are offering you a rundown of the types of overspenders out there so that you know who exactly you are and where exactly you can curtail.

Ward Off Hackers By Investing In Precious Metals – Why Are They A Proven Store Of Wealth?

Have you ever been sceptical about whether or not your wealth can be hacked? Well, this is a threat which is mostly overlooked by investors. Investors actually ignore them at their own peril! In a world where elections can be hacked, who can vouch for the fact that brokerage accounts and banks can’t be hacked? It has just been 5 months into Donald Trump’s presidency and within that time Russia hacked elections and this theory of conspiracy won’t just vanish!

Off late, major e-commerce websites and e-mail providers have been attacked by hackers where they take customer’s secret information and sell it off on the web. In fact you thought that Bitcoin is hack-proof, you need to think again. There are million dollars worth crypto currency which have been digitally hacked by hackers.

Can you reduce vulnerability to hackers by investing in precious metals?

Well precious metals have always proved themselves as storage of wealth for years unknown. During financial instability, precious metals like gold are deemed as safe haven as they’re used to enhance security and preserve wealth to an uncertain economic future. Being finite and tangible resources, precious metals will always retain their inherent value as they’re not controlled by any financial institution or the government. USMoney Reserve is one of the largest distributors of precious metals issued by the American government.

As we know that that there are very few assets which offer your family a shield against economic and political uncertainty, precious metals like silver and gold help protect your wealth from viable threats like hacking and sudden decline of the US dollars or a crash in the stock market.

Investing in precious metals – How to go about the process

When people speak of investing in precious metals, they actually mean buying and selling silver, gold or platinum. Investment can be done in 2 forms; investors can buy the metal and keep it in some private place like your safe or in the bank. Another option is by buying a precious metal ETF. Ideally, this entails purchasing a stock which is tied to the present value of the metal. When the metal’s value goes up, this has a direct relation with the price of the ETF as well.

Big pulses of precious metal investment

It’s a physical commodity: If you own a precious metal like gold, you own a piece of that metal and this is different from the way a stock or share works as it exists on paper.

It’s a controlled item: You won’t find an oversupply of precious metals like gold, silver or platinum. Although such metals are mined most of the time but that doesn’t make it grow at a rapid rate. US Money Reserve sells such metals to the most reputed mints of the world. You can check out their Crunchbase profile to know more on the company.

Its price runs opposite to the economy: Off late, there has been a sudden rise in gold’s value and this has come during a period when the US economy is in a sluggish state. This means that people usually take resort to gold when the economy looks weak and they move out of the precious metal when the economy looks strong.

In case you have a huge portfolio of investments which includes assets of other classes, foreign currency, foreign stocks, cash, bonds and real estate, precious metals can definitely be one more element you may want to add. Precious metals are a volatile piece of the investment picture that can be effortlessly balanced with the other stable assets of your portfolio.

Common Credit Card Mistakes

Credit cards are everyone’s gateway to whole different world. These cards may be small and unassuming but the power they wield over mere mortals is unparalleled. Credit cards are similar to miniature loan providers without having to avail approval and furnish documents every time a transaction is required. All individuals will have to do is pay their credit card bill by the end of the month or whenever their billing cycle is. However, credit cards are provided by the bank or financial organization based on the individual’s income and also their credit score if it is not their first card.

How Your Finances Should “Change” After You Become Parents

Upgrading your finances makes for one of your crucial responsibilities as new parents. Has the baby arrived? Or is it about to arrive soon? Are you done setting up the nursery? Have you kept aside the delivery charges? What should your financial checklist look like after your baby has arrived?

Documented below are a few ways in which you should upgrade your finance after your baby is born. Read on in order to unravel.

Do you know about the importance of Social Insurance Number?

Make sure you are focusing on the creation of a social insurance number for the baby. If you are living in Canada or want your baby to work there in the near future then you ideally- at first- establish a registered education savings plan in his or her name. Your child will require a social insurance number. Most of the provinces of the country offer a Newborn Registration Service which enables new parents to apply for the social insurance number or SIN. This is done while issuing the child’s birth registration. In Ontario and British Columbia, you can also apply for the birth certificate at the same time.

Why Reviewing the Insurance Policy is Important

The arrival of the baby necessitates a thorough review of your insurance. If you are yet to secure a life insurance policy then it is the time to get one. If you already have a life insurance policy (which you ideally should have) you should check whether the terms mentioned in the policy are sufficient enough to cover the needs of the new addition to the family or not.

Should you Undermine your Financial Goals?

How do you strike the right balance between your own financial goals and your child’s needs? Everybody will tell you that your baby’s needs should definitely be prioritized but that doesn’t really mean that you should dismiss your own needs totally. So, how is it that you should aim for that perfect balance? It is very important to include childcare, education and food costs in your budget.

However, doing this definitely doesn’t mean that you will focus solely on these needs and completely forget about your own financial goals. Do not hesitate to save money for property, car etc. Additionally, be prudent enough to set aside money for important emergencies like job loss, pay cut and drain of wealth in the form of medical bills as well. So the motto of your financial planning after a kid is born should be “your baby’s need come first but that shouldn’t mean that you should undermine your needs”.

Power of Attorney: A Must!

Do establish powers of attorney. This may be the last thing on your mind but you should be prudent enough to decide who your child’s legal (and financial) guardian will be in the event of your absence. Put in writing the name of the person who should be responsible. Pick a close friend or relative who is willing to take those decisions for you in your absence. Set up a health care power of attorney.

Why Living in these US Cities is Financially Advantageous

Though many of us haven’t really realized this, it’s actually very important to consider the earning potential of a given region and its cost of living simultaneously while we are in the process of zeroing in on a region where we would want to live.

How does Finance Affect our Choice of Living Region?

We do want to live close to our friends, relatives or loved ones, but it’s our finances that finally go on to determine the place where we want to stay. And, talking about our finances, it is absolutely important on our end to not to treat the cost of living in a region and its income potential separately because they do work at tandem and not in isolation.

Generally places with fat paychecks in New York (or for that matter in most other parts of the world) are associated with higher cost of living (include food, rent and transport). However, a recent research has actually led to more heartening findings.

Fat Paychecks and Low Cost of Living: What the USA has to Offer you

If you are looking for residential options in the country, then it’s advisable for you to scout regions lying in its middle instead of just arbitrarily shifting towards the more expensive coasts. The middle of the country has regions combining fat paychecks and modest cost of living. Documented below is a rundown of the US cities that combine the best of both worlds.

Read on in order to be duly guided in this regard.

Which US Cities Promise the best virtues of cost of living and paycheck? You will find out right here! Hopefully this read will facilitate your house hunting endeavors by a little extent.

Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas

Lying in the Sunbelt, this city is known to reap the benefits of high net domestic migration and an almost zero existent state income tax. The comparison drawn by Numbeo regarding the costs of living in Los Angeles and Dallas will actually make the picture crystal clear for you!

It has been said that a person needs around $5,066.81 in Los Angeles, CA to maintain the same standard of life that you can actually enjoy for $4, 200 in Dallas, Texas.

Houston, Texas

Houston, Texas is also known for its high domestic migration rate coupled with desirable economic trajectory. Notably, as per Census Bureau’s 2015 population estimates, Texas had witnessed the most remarkable increase in population. Talk about the suburb Harris County in the city and it actually grew at a better rate than any other country. The Department of Numbers proclaimed that the city’s median household nominal income was something around $60,072 last year and its real income was $65,910.

Denver, Colorado

Denver, Colorado is known for its picturesque serenity and outdoorsy community. The area is dotted with a number of small towns, where you are allowed to hike with your family and pets absolutely free of charge. The Living Wage Calculator (from Massachusetts Institute of Technology) reveals that the typical annual salaries of Denver as far as the management jobs are concerned are something around $103,690. The living wage that people must earn in the city (as calculated) is $10.79 as against $14.37 in San Francisco.

Get Acquainted With Time Banking Basics: Your Time Is Now!

With job recessions and downturns, amplifying the idea of time banking can be helpful in more ways than you can envisage. Not only does it give value to menial jobs but it also helps evoking community bonding--- something that no money transaction can give you. Time dollars are as valuable as any other currency and alongside getting your job done can be a new way of life in this age of economic decline. Time banking uses people’s time instead of cash outlay for any kind of service provided.

Herein documented are a few basics of this process to get familiar with the advantages time banking renders. Know better!

What ‘time banking’ actually is

As explained above time banking is a way to payout a job done with time currency instead of money in any form. Now let us cite an example, your house needs cleaning and you get help from someone. Normally this would bring upon you a hefty service bill but none in this case. Thinking why? That is the “no money way” where you serve with service like for house cleaning you walk someone’s dog from the time banking community. 

Surely a boon for the daily wagers who generally have to pay often more than what the earnings are for the services and even for the affluent class. The policy of “give help and get help” can get things done easy and also create a bond amongst neighbors.

Count the hours

One hour gets you one hour of credit. This is the distinguished feature of this unique banking system. In return of an hour of service you give in you get an hour of time dollars that you can utilize to get any job done in return.

Time banking is not the same as bartering because in this you don’t exchange jobs with the same individual rather you can do the work for anyone in the community and in return get favors done from anyone from the same community. Likewise if someone helps your neighbor with baby-sitting can request you to help with laundry in return for the time dollars earned by him.

Not just one on one basis but time banking can be useful to serve a group of people as well to earn credits. For example, the person who serves time hours at the old age center in return can get someone to help her with taxes.

Discern the principles and benefits

The values are applicable to all time banks irrespective of its size, purpose and management. Time banks value people above anything else and also give recognition to many occupations that do not fit the traditional job brackets. It endows everyone with respect and helps building positive relationship among the communal residents.

In the wake of the unprecedented growth in the rate of unemployment, time banking can bring in some amount of respite. A new age currency that saves on taxes—isn’t it a great way to describe this phenomenon? Alongside being helpful in this time of financial crisis it brings forth a sense of social responsibility something not any other banking system would ratify.

Although time banks are exceedingly worthwhile yet they aren’t free from some downsides. Research well before forming a time bank or joining a running one. Hope you’re sorted!

Time is money!

Planning for a Financially Secure Retirement

You already work hard enough and you are probably already saving for your kids’ college funds, that new car you want, or even a bigger home. How can you possibly find the time, money, or even patience to start figuring out how much of a nest egg you are going to need for a proper retirement?

Well, the good news is that the whole process doesn’t have to be as mind numbing as you might think.

Trying to figure how to save enough money for retirement, how much you need to save, and where to invest it, is one of the most frustrating issues within the realm of personal finance. Of course, you already know that the amount of money you need will be dependent on the lifestyle that you want to live, but how can you possibly come up with a figure without already knowing how much everything will cost?

Are your dreams of touring the Caribbean on a luxury yacht achievable? Is it possible for you to find a way to retire down South and live in the lap of luxury? Or should you instead be aiming for comfortable living with the occasional treat now and then?

The problem with retirement savings is that a lot of people do not even ask themselves these questions, nor do they set realistic goals even if they do. While it is sad to say, these are the same people that end up cursing themselves down the road when they find themselves to be on the starting blocks of life all over again at the age of 65.

Thankfully, there is help and there are ways for you to avoid second mortgages, part-time work after retirement, and the daunting B word - bankruptcy.

One of the major drawbacks for retirement planning is that it often involves complicated calculations and complex formulas. The lingo that many financial advisors use is downright intimidating, while many people are simply looking for a savings estimate that they can aim for.

If your retirement is still a ways away, then it is incredibly beneficial to decide which type of retirement lifestyle you desire, and even crave. Do you want a large home with all the bells and whistles? Are you striving for a middle-of-the road retirement with a few high quality assets? Or are you comfortable with bare-bones living in a cozy area?

Once you have made a decision on which of the three retirement variations you want to achieve, continue reading on in order to get a look into just how much your post-work life is going to cost.

So you want to retire in the Lap of Luxury?

If you are looking for a little more than the average retirement offers, and want to jump over middle-class living, then you have to be ready for costs to skyrocket. The same basic assets will still apply to this lifestyle, as you will have cars, a house, take vacations, and dine out in restaurants. However, your cars will be a lot fancier, your house will be bigger, the restaurants you eat at will be classier, and your vacations will be lengthy and exotic.

With this type of lifestyle comes add-ons such as golf memberships, a boat, well maintained landscaping, as well as upgrades and amenities within a home. These are the retirees that have vacation homes around the world and a whole lot of money available for living life and spoiling the ones they love.

Sounds to die for right?

The real question is, how much is it going to cost you?

In the simplest of terms, if you do not have a pension from your employer then you are going to have to be a millionaire to afford this type of retirement. Assume for example that you will be getting $40,000 from your government pension plan or other income streams; you are going to need another $60,000 a year in retirement savings. This equals out to a substantial $1.5 million dollar retirement savings plan in order to live the way you plan to.

If that sounds like an absurd figure, take solace in the fact that you are not alone. However, these are the hard figures that people need to hear in order to understand that their retirement goals may just be a little bit lofty.

Need some good news? There is an exception to the rule. If both you and your spouse have had the pleasure of a public sector job, then your pensions could well be the ticket to luxury you have been relying on. To delve further into the matter, if you and your spouse both earn over $60,000 a year as public employees and plan to retire after 35 years of work, you are almost guaranteed enough pension to live like part of the royal family.

Your combined pension, along with other savings and investments, should top the $100,000 a year mark which means you will have a hold of that $1.5 million nest egg that a lot of people strive for.

In fact, it is not uncommon for public employees to realize they can live much more frivolously in retirement than they did while working full time.

If you are considering switching occupations, you are not alone either.

Retire and Live in the Middle-Class

The majority of people are not going to be able to live it up in retirement like those previously mentioned, but they still have the chance to enjoy more than just bare-bones living. Many people aim for enjoying the same comfort they did will working full time, and are more than happy with that. Over time, more and more seniors are pursuing expensive hobbies such as owning vacation homes, traveling, golfing, or skiing. This is a lifestyle that is built more on experience than it is on assets, and that is why many seniors downsize to cheaper cars and smaller homes in order to enjoy more active living.

The average spending of couples over the age of 65 is approximately $40,000 a year, but a very comfortable retirement can cost closer to $60,000 a year.

So how much are you going to need to enjoy an active retirement?

Assuming that you will receive close to $30,000 in a government pension plan, you are going to need to have a nest egg that can handle an extra $15,000 to $30,000 a year. Financial experts advise that retirees need savings that totals 25 times your targeted yearly spending, which means that a middle-class retirement will require retirement savings of around $250,000. If you want to enjoy a little more in your life after work, then a good target is around $750,000 in savings.

There is a big variation between the two, and deciding the amount you want to save will depend largely on how much you want to enjoy life now compared to how much you want to enjoy life in the future.

Retiring with Bare-Bones Standards

While a no-frills type of retirement seems to be the worst-case scenario, it is definitely wise to know what you will need to save in order to survive. This gives you a definite start point in terms of your savings, and will give you the information you need to start building.

A bare-bones retirement entails a lifestyle where a retiree rents their home, does not own a car, and does not possess spare income for nights out, alcohol, or even upgrades such as cable TV. This does not exemplify the retirement dreams of many people, but this lifestyle still affords food, shelter, health care coverage and other essential costs.

The question then becomes: how much are you going to need in order to simply survive?

The good news here is that in many cases you are not going to have to save a dime. A combination of your government assistance as a low-income senior and federal Social Security benefits will ensure that all your basic needs are covered, especially if you live in a smaller city. If yourself and your spouse are over the age of 65 then you will qualify for close to $25,000 a year if you have no other savings or income to speak of.

So basically, the government has made sure that the elderly do not live in poverty, but have really only promised about $1 more than the poverty line.

This is still better then nothing, and it definitely feels good to know that you won’t have to worry about where your next meal comes from, even if your retirement savings plans fall apart.

Meeting Your Retirement Expectations

In the end, it is very important for you to match your desires with your actual means. If you are like most people, and are not a millionaire, it doesn’t mean that you have to give up on your lofty aspirations for retirement, but you have to remain realistic. Find variations of what you dream of that are less expensive. For instance, if you lay in bed dreaming of your luxury vacation home in the South of France, consider a rental condo in a more affordable locale.

On the other hand if you know your savings plans just aren’t shaping up, it is not uncommon for a lot of retirees to work part time. Even three days a week as a consultant or as a business manager can make an incredible difference on your retirement bottom line, and can be the difference between three basic meals a day and dining on succulent cuisine in Europe.

Retirement savings is important, but it can be a lot simpler than you first imagine. Consider what type of retirement you are after, set realistic goals, and set out with a plan of action. With a few smart decisions and an attainable goal, you may realize that your retirement dreams are not nearly as far off as you thought.

And if some of the figures in this article brought you back down to earth, at least you know now before it is too late.

This article is contributed by Steven, he is a professional personal finance journalist. He is a contributor for several personal finance web sites. His work has been mentioned in and linked to from, USA Today, The Huffington Post, Benzinga, Investopedia, The Wall Street Journal, and other publications. Make sure to subscribe to his Credit Zeal blog.

The Nuances of Money Recycling Explored

Stuff that you’re leaving in your blue bin every day or for that matter every week or month might as well be worth cash! And, that’s how we start off establishing our claims regarding the pragmatism of money recycling. Selling your used cooking oil, using the old corks for a new bottle of wine may not really be stuff that you do or think about every day. However, you can do that if you want to. Here’s where the worth of moneyrecycling comes into play – to cast a very meaningful impact in your life.

The Significance of Building an Emergency Fund while Welcoming your Baby

Your responsibility as a new parent isn’t really restricted to changing diapers and bringing home new toys for your baby every day. At the heart of your parenthood planning is your finances. Usually it doesn’t take much time for partners to decide whether they’re “emotionally” ready to welcome another member in their lives or not. And, once you realize that the answer is in an assertive, you embark on a well thought-out financial plan to ensure that your long cherished dream of parenthood comes into fruition.

An Emergency Fund: Your Stepping Stone towards the Creation of a Complete Financial System

An emergency fund is what you should start off with—a fund which will act as a cushion after you welcome the baby home – i.e. at a time when cashflow is likely to become a little tighter. It doesn’t matter whether you are required to get a sewage pipe fixed at your home or else get your baby treated on an emergency basis for some reason or the other – you should be able to do it without really turning to your credit cards.

Now, as a responsible would-be parent you need to understand the nuances of personal finance well. Even apparently “inconsequential” expenditures related to your plumbing or other day to day needs can have serious financial consequences that are beyond your control!

Are you turning to your credit cards to meet the day to day needs of your kid? Wait till the snowball effect starts taking a toll on your finances!

The key is not to let these untoward incidents mar the joy of parenthood! Here is a step by step guide with the help of which you will be able to build an emergency fund without breaking a sweat! Read on to unravel in the course of this post.

A Bigger or Smaller Emergency Fund?

The general rule of thumb is to build an emergency cash fund for 3-6 months. With at least 3 months’ of an emergency fund you will be able to handle potential catastrophes like minor inconveniences. In a way, you are ready to meet your unexpected expenses. There is nothing to throw you into a fit of panic or for that matter to make you turn to the scary debts including credit cards.

However, if you do feel that with your present earning and budget, it is a bit difficult to build a 3-month fund you can aim for a smaller one. The key is to build your fund in stages rather than jumping on a 3-month or 6-month goal.

The Different Stages of Building the Fund

The stage 1 of your fund building should be focused on irregular but expected expenses like any special treatment for the baby or mom, attending guests who might pay a surprise visit to your home to see your baby, car repairs (you wouldn’t want to procrastinate repairs if needed quite simply because of the fact that you will require the car to rush to the doctor to get your partner or baby treated during possible emergencies) and others. A regular deposit of $ 1,000 - $2,000 should keep you sorted when it comes to stage 1 of an emergency fund.

Stage two is meant for meeting true emergencies. What if you end up losing a job when your baby comes? What if you are supposed to pay up a huge hospital bill?

Compare Home Insurance Quotes for Getting the Best Price

There are many people who belief that it is essential to call different insurance agencies or visit a number of insurance companies in order to compare home insurance quotes for obtaining the lowest rates. However, in present world where the internet is playing one of the greatest roles in making lives easier for people, getting rates for home policies in the comfort and the privacy of your house is not a big deal. Some of the best rates for home indemnity can easily be found simply by going online and visiting an insurance comparison site. Whether you are on the lookout of additional coverage or extra liability coverage or a basic policy, a good insurance comparison website will surely help you in getting the best plans available at the best rates.

The Work Procedure of the Comparison Sites

House insurance comparison sites are the best tools that can be used to compare home insurance quotes. This is because these websites offer a number of significant advantages. These websites can easily be used for searching insurance quotes within the comforts of the home and according to one’s own schedule. It is also possible to find many price quotes coming from different insurance companies. This is far more beneficial than looking for insurance quotes at your hometown agencies. The only thing that you need to do is spend some time in filling out the basic questionnaire for obtaining the quotation for home indemnity that come from A-rated insurance companies. Post this, you can easily compare home insurance quotes according to the time that you have on hand. This way, you are not restricted to a handful of insurance companies available in the area that you live. It is also important to note that all the services available at the comparison websites are absolutely free of cost.

Important Tips on Getting the Best Home Insurance Quotes

Here, you will find some other important tips that can help you in getting the most affordable and the best rates for house coverage.

• Try raising your deductibles as high as you can actually afford. This will help you in saving a huge amount of money on your home insurance plan.

• Try getting each and every discount that you are eligible to receive. There are many insurance firms that offer some special discounts for senior citizens and non-smokers. Discounts can also be obtained if the house possesses safety features like burglar alarm, smoke alarms and deadbolts.

• You can also get multi-policy discount. Multi-policy means buying different policies from the same company. For example, you can get a special discount of 15% by placing your home and your car insurance with the same insurance firm.

• Purchase the right amount of home insurance protection. Remember, you will just require coverage for rebuilding your house if it gets destroyed in some circumstances. Never use the appraised value of your house since it comes included with the value of the land it is located on.

• It is necessary for you to take the services of a building contractor or a real estate agent for obtaining a clear estimate of the amount     of money that you would have to put into rebuilding your house.

The simplest and the quickest method of getting home insurance quotes from top quality insurance companies is by making use of an insurance comparison website.

9 Smart Moves to Curtail Your Income Tax

It’s tax time and a time to look back the last year while keeping your eyes open toward increasing deductions as well as tax credits and having a tax cut for this year. Popular and effective tax deductions include real estate taxes, student loan interest and real estate interest. But these are not all; there are many more options available to you to cut down your tax burden.

Here are some extremely effective and smart methods to minimize your tax bill for this year.

1. Start a business – Being an entrepreneur can radically improve your tax situation; as a business owner you can take more control over how you’ll pay your taxes. You’ve the option to keep more dollars in your company rather than drawing it down as you income. You can also count specific expenses. A tax professional may help you navigate the nitty-gritty of Internal Revenue Service (IRS) regulations on qualified expenses that are quite lengthy.

2. Having children can help – The tax rules offer a number of benefits to the parents. Such benefits may include the child tax credit, credit for childcare costs and ability to count more number of dependants in your family. Alimony payments can also allow you to take advantage of tax deductible.

3. Maintain long-term mortgage – Since interest payments toward mortgage are tax deductible, you can benefit by maintaining your mortgage as long as feasible as opposed to paying the mortgage early. All you need to balance that tax benefits against additional interest incurred. However, paying your debt off, if you have enough savings to do that surely gives you mental satisfaction.

4. Check for earned income tax credit – The earned income tax credit applicable to low and moderate income groups, can give you notable amount of credit. So check whether your income makes you eligible for such a tax credit. You can get help from an income tax consultant in Florida, being a Florida resident, to help you in this regard.

5. Save for retirement – If you voluntarily take lower amount of paycheck to your home by maximizing retirement contributions (though it’s quite painful in short-term), you’d have two useful benefits. First, you can increase retirement savings and the second, you minimize tax burden. Money funneled into different kinds of retirement accounts like IRAs and 401 (k) would allow you to enjoy tax deduction, within limit.

6. Keep track of medical expenses –
Some healthcare-related expenses such as supplies like bandages and breast pumps, acupuncture are tax deductible. For a comprehensive list of such qualified items, you can visit the official website of IRS. Make sure you preserve all the receipts.

7. Be energy efficient – Our federal government encourages valued taxpayers to make their houses more energy-efficient by providing credits for different wise moves like insulation installation, new doors and windows, installing heating and cooling systems etc. Some alternative energy sources such as a solar panel are also qualified for tax credits.

8. Put dollars into college savings – Only a very few parents create 529 college savings account for their children and so they miss getting the tax benefits by not letting the money grow tax free. As long as amount goes toward tuition fees, you don’t need to pay taxes on that income.

9. Look for useless securities – If you own a security that has gone completely worthless, you can deduct the loss.
To know more about the windows that would help you save on your income tax, you just visit any of the reputed income tax consultants in Miami, if you’re a resident of Florida, to provide you with better understanding.

Household debt climbs to $12.5 trillion – Get out of debt with the help of envelope budgeting

Even among people with the lowest credit scores, the credit card is coming back yet again. During the second quarter of 2016, the total household debt ballooned to $12.5 trillion, as per the quarterly report by New York Fed. This increase was driven only by credit cards and auto loans. Auto loan debt has been rising since the past 6 years but the soaring credit card balances have been a recent development. Post recession, households curbed their usage of credit cards till 2014. However, since then card balances have increased by around $70 billion.
Credit cards are more of a necessary evil.

They are extremely necessary tools in our modern life but at the same time, they are the root of all financial problems. If people use cards moderately, this can lead to smooth consumption but when your usage goes out of control, you might fall in trouble. Here are some steps that you may take to stay out of debt.