Right about now, retirees and Social Security recipients are anxiously awaiting the Social Security Administration (SSA) announcement of what might be a Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) (if there is one) for 2018. I say “if” because as we have seen in recent years, the COLA adjustment hasn’t always been there for the many who depend on it to survive in a very costly 21st century world. So, will it be all good news?
Social Security beneficiaries have lost almost one third of their buying power since the year 2000 as the cost of things purchased by these recipients, typically the elderly, have continually outpaced any inflation adjustments made by the government and the SSA according to a recent report by The Senior Citizens League (TSCL). Continue reading
For today’s guest post on types of life insurance, please welcome insurance agent and fellow blogger Chris Huntley.
When it comes to life insurance, getting the wrong policy can be like flushing money down the toilet. On the flip side, getting the right one can adequately protect your loved ones without breaking the bank.
If you ask most life insurance agents which type is best, the answer is no surprise.
…it’s the one that offers the biggest commissions.
It’s not your responsibility to pad their pocketbook, though, so read on to learn which types of life insurance you should consider and which you should avoid.
The two best types of life insurance
The whole point of life insurance should be to provide for your loved ones financially if you pass away without being a big financial burden now. Continue reading
Generally speaking, I have always thought myself to be very frugal and smart with my money. It’s a lesson I learned as a kid from my mother who was really good at stretching a dollar and more than that, she understood that extravagance just wasn’t a virtue. My parents provided a pretty good life for me as a child, and I was never all about having the biggest or best of everything anyway. I often saw that others were demanding that kind of thing. Being practical and even “frugal” was fine with me all through my formative years.
But something happened, a blip along the way. That’s something I’d like to share with you.
My financial successes led to erosion of my frugality! Continue reading
Climate change isn’t just about our weather changing. If the world continues to heat up and continues to have more powerful storms and other natural catastrophes at what seems to be an increasing frequency, our finances will be taking a big hit. Even it doesn’t happen right where you live, you’ll still be affected financially. That’s not good news. As we just have all witnessed with Hurricane Harvey in Texas and Louisiana as well as in the western U.S. with numerous wildfires, not to mention the impending Hurricane Irma, the damages from weather can change your life in a heartbeat, and the recovery from it can take years of suffering and billions of dollars. The cost of climate change is real and will affect us all.
The changes in our climate are being debated and that seems like a waste of time and goes against one of the most basic planning techniques that exist. “Hope for the best and be prepared for the worst” has no truer relevance than when we look at the possibilities and effects of climate change, and you can quote me (and many others) on that one!
In the short term, we need to support those affected by these natural disasters. But for the longer term, we need to be focused on how to prevent some of those disasters from occurring at all. If we don’t, we’re going to have to pay a very steep price. Continue reading
This is a paid post written by me on behalf of Discover Personal Loans. All opinions are my own.
The accumulation of debt is something that all of us try to minimize in our financial lives. While most of us may be pretty smart about managing our money, many of us have debt and are paying it off at a higher interest rate every month than we need to be, instead of saving.
In fact, household credit card debt today is over $750 billion in total. There are many reasons for accumulating debt. The most common use revolving debt; credit cards and medical expenses, which can frequently be due to an unexpected situation. To be financially successful, first try to avoid taking on more debt than you can handle. Second if you already have debt, create a plan to pay it off. For example, if you’re someone who has debt from spending outside your budget, find ways to pay off your debt and to reduce and eliminate your excess spending. Become more familiar with the “why” you acquire more debt and possibly fall behind in your monthly bill payments and then you’ll be able to find a solution to pay it off. Ultimately, taking these steps could lead to finding the best ways for you to avoid unwanted debt, and only having debt that helps you reach your goals, like a mortgage you can afford or loan that helps you consolidate debt and pay it down faster. Continue reading
Often we spend a lot of time trying to rationalize why we haven’t achieved all of our goals in life and yet we spend a lot of our time looking at others and wondering why and how they were able to have made it. Enter FOMO, or fear of missing out.
Wondering why about our lack of achievements seems like a waste of valuable time. Yet it doesn’t take long in a conversation among busy adults to get into it and for someone to raise a pervasive, underlying concern: “Am I making the right choices for my career, my family, and my life?” We’re so often consumed with what we—or our loved ones—might be missing out on or not achieving that it’s not a surprise to me that FOMO, the acronym for the fear of missing out, was added to the Oxford English Dictionary a few years ago. Continue reading
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If you are anything like me, you are always on the hunt to find some new ways to earn some extra cash. It might be a side hustle like selling at the flea market (which by the way is one of the most popular posts I have ever written) or it might be working a second job, part-time. There’s even the weird idea of writing a blog to make some money, albeit not quite as easy as it says it is on paper (or actually in cyberspace). In any event, if I were to ask you the question, “Do you want to make some extra money”, 99% of you would most likely answer a resounding “YES”! (I hear you!!)
The many reasons we love that extra cash
So you want to start earning some extra income? You are not alone, my friend. Maybe you want to save up toward a weekend getaway with your significant other or need to generate extra cash to supplement some lost income. Are you desperately trying to save for a new car? Continue reading
Sunday evening around 9:30 pm, my wife and I were sitting in our living room watching a movie when we heard the sounds of a fire engine racing nearby and saw the flashing lights outside of our window. At first we didn’t pay too much attention to it, but a minute later a second, third, and more engines started to turn in across the street in our condo complex along with several police cars and ambulances. Before you could say holy sh*t, we realized that someone’s condo was in the middle of a serious blaze. It was a complete shocker and very scary.
Fires can happen, we all know that!
Living in a condo where over 400 units are so close together makes the thought of a fire even more dramatic. A fire in one home easily spreads quickly and can engulf an entire block of homes in a short period of time. Even if you live in a single family home on a plain somewhere in Montana, a fire can happen and kill someone or ruin your home and life. Continue reading
Ok all of you “personal finance buffs”, so you think you can dance? No, wait a second, that’s a whole other thing, Monday nights on Fox at 8 PM. With hostess Cat Deeley! But I digress…
Personal expertise about money issues is a subject all of us strive for and some of us are really good at it. The truth about it is that we usually learn the ins and outs of money the hard way, and hopefully we all learn from our mistakes and never repeat them. Since I have made many a money mistake in my lifetime, I consider myself an expert. Hmmm, is that a good thing to admit? Well, whether it is or not, it has helped me learn a thing or two about what and what not to do to build good finances. Continue reading
Insurance and insurance companies in the United States today are a major topic of conversation. In healthcare, for example, you literally cannot escape the debate on whether the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) should remain as is, be fixed, or be repealed and replaced. Millions of Americans could lose their coverage or simply won’t be able to afford it unless something is done about our healthcare system. That whole topic of insurance problems is very, very painful. But that isn’t exactly what this post is about.
Today’s post is about how your insurance policies and the coverages you pay for are managed that can be even more painful than any illness, injury, or accident. That goes for health, auto, homeowners, and even your life insurance. Here’s why. Continue reading