Sunday, April 23

Financial Well-being


Want to improve your credit score? Want to cut your tax bills?  Like to tear up hundred dollar bills? (You're probably doing that). How about this:  want to wake up retired and without money?  Your Financial Well-being rules your life.  We put you in charge of the rules.

 

What Is a “Credit Score” And How Can It Affect Your Credit?

altWhat is your credit score? And why is it important? In this report, we give you some basic facts about credit scoring that highlight its importance to your financial health. Credit scoring is a system of statistically analyzing credit reports that provides a simple three-digit score comparing an individual's past and current credit performance to that of similar consumers. Your credit score provides lenders, or other potential creditors such as insurance companies or landlords, a quick, fairly objective way to assess your creditworthiness—or likely ability to pay back a loan or mortgage or pay the rent. Knowing your credit score (along with regularly checking your credit report) is a smart thing to do.

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Tips for Improving Your Credit Score

credit_consolodateWhether your credit is already good or could use some improvement, managing your personal finances in ways that enhance your creditworthiness is always smart. Adopting sound practices that enhance your credit score is a good place to start.

The topic of credit scores has been in the personal finance news since credit reporting agencies began to make such scores available to consumers several years ago. This event has opened the door to a number of Web-based companies that offer to provide your score — along with outrageous fees — for what may be inaccurate information. You can get all this information yourself for much less. The FoolProof Report, "What's Your Credit Score, and How Can it Affect Your Credit?" explains credit scoring and tells you how to get accurate information about your score for a reasonable fee.

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It's Time to Tap Year-End Money-Saving and Tax-Saving Tips

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When December arrives, thoughts turn not just to the holidays but to steps you can take to maximize year-end savings, particularly on the year’s taxes. As you enjoy the season’s festivities, take a moment to consider the following potential ways to save.

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Do You Have These Important Planning Documents in Order?

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If an incapacitating illness or accident were to strike suddenly, would your family (or other designated person) know where to find important documents related to your finances, health care, and personal information and assets?

An important part of managing all of your assets is making a plan that details what you’d like to happen in the future under various life circumstances. These range from illness or accident to death. This process is usually called "estate planning." And doing this planning is important whether you are young and just starting out or older and reaching retirement age. Even if you haven’t made a formal plan, you have assets and documents that ought to be organized for your use and so that your spouse, children, or designee can find them easily in case of an emergency.

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Are You Saving for Your Kids' College?

Tips for Success No Matter When You Start

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In September, parents' thoughts turn naturally to school, don’t they? September is also National College Savings Month. Whether your child is 5 or 15, it’s never too early or too late to think about saving for higher education. Higher education at colleges and universities and technical schools pays off in higher regular and lifetime earnings and lower unemployment rates for most people. For example, the U.S. Census Bureau estimates than individuals with a bachelor’s degree will earn an average of one million dollars more over their lifetime than individuals with a high school diploma.

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