June 2009

When Is It Time to Get a New Bank?

I bank with Bank of America, and have another account with Washington Mutual. There have been occasions where both banks have nearly driven me to quit them and find some new way to manage my money. In the end, they’ve both offered features that convinced me to stay. Nevertheless, I keep my list of deciding factors around in case one of them finally pushes me over the edge.…
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What’s Your Holiday Budget This Year?

As I mentioned last year, Good Morning America recommended that your holiday budget be three times your daily income. Divide your annual salary by 52, then by 5, then multiply by 3. If you make $52,000 a year, you can spend $600 this holiday season. Is Three Times Your Daily Salary Too Much? However, with cutbacks and job losses, it seems that more people plan to spend much less than…
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Start the Year Right: New Year, New Budget

It’s the beginning of the year, which means it’s the perfect time to sit down and redo your budget. Plan out your basic expenses, budget for savings and big purchases, and start yourself on the path to a financially sound year. Reassess Your Taxes and Income If you adjusted your retirement or flexible spending account contributions, received a raise, bought a house, had a child, or did anything…
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Does Net Worth Matter?

Today I used a quick calculator from Money magazine to determine that I have a net worth of -$60,000. But hey, that’s better than were I was a year ago, because I didn’t own a house. Back then my net worth was -$200,000. You’re probably wondering how taking on more debt reduced my net worth. And that is the trouble with net worth calculations. What Net Worth Is Net worth…
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Don’t Panic: The FDIC Is Secure

Yesterday the big story was the FDIC’s request for prepayment of three year’s worth of fees by member banks to shore up its dwindling reserves. Don’t panic. The FDIC is still secure. You don’t need to close your accounts or rush to the bank to withdraw your money. The FDIC Has a Treasury Credit Line According to NPR, the FDIC has a $100 billion credit line from Treasury that…
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picture oh hoouses for small house vs big house

Big Home vs. Small Home: How Much House Do You Need?

This article mainly talks about Small house vs Big house, what their advantages are and do you really need the other one over the other? I was recently watching one of the HGTV home buying shows, and the prospective buyer said she needed at least 3,000 square feet. She was a single woman with dogs, no children. My first thought was: why do you need a home that…
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A Million Bucks in Pennies at the Carnivals

We’re shaking things up a bit at this week’s blog carnivals. I’m presenting just two carnivals, and one of them is a newcomer to the slate. So, welcome to the Carnival of Everything Money #2 at the Penny Daily. It’s my first time participating and my post about dropping out of life was an editor’s pick. I also recommend Make Money Easy Online’s guide to finding online work that pays – which may come…
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Earn Free Loot with Swag Bucks

Last week I started using a search engine called SwagBucks, and I’ve already earned enough points (swag bucks) to buy a $5 Amazon gift card. Are you in on the latest way to win free prizes? How SwagBucks Works SwagBucks is simple. Perform searches at their engine and occasionally you win points for those searches. However, they also offer other ways to earn points, and that’s where they really rack…
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Five Ways to Save Money on Valentine’s Day

I’m not a Valentine’s Day scrooge. I have celebrated the day with great fanfare in the past – usually early in a relationship. Now that I’ve been with my husband for nine years, the day is becoming less important to me. Also, I don’t find being surrounded by hordes celebrating enforced romance the least bit romantic. I also recognize that most of the Valentine’s Day pressure is a…
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Which Factors Really Affect a Credit Score?

You’ve probably heard that hard pulls on your credit report can ding your credit score and keep it low for a few months. Since I’m now applying for my third mortgage in eight months (one purchase, two free re-fis), I’ve actually gotten free peaks at our credit scores and watched how quickly they recover. Hard Pulls Last About a Year We first started having our credit pulled in February of…
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