Q&A: A dirty problem

Dear Liz: I bought a house four years ago. The previous owner allowed a gentleman to plant flowers every spring and tend them all summer. I allowed the man to continue after I bought the house. He waters the flowers using my water and I help weed every year. He came to me last week […]

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Q&A: State pensions’ effect on Social Security

Dear Liz: Recently someone wrote to you about plans to receive a state pension and apply for Social Security benefits. You said if the person’s job didn’t pay into Social Security, the Social Security benefit might be reduced because of the state pension. I have a state pension from a job that did not pay into Social […]

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Friday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: Dispelling bankruptcy myths. Also in the news: The dangers of credit card checks, the fine print of your car and home insurance, and why many Americans still struggle with credit. 5 Bankruptcy Myths Dispelled Bankruptcy mythbusting. Don’t Cash That Credit Card Check Until You Read This Proceed with caution. Is it covered? […]

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Using debt strategically: Join us!

I’m hosting NerdWallet’s first Facebook Live video, “Using Debt Strategically,” on Thursday starting at 7 p.m. Eastern/4 p.m. Pacific. I’ll be discussing ways to prioritize your debt and pay it off faster while building your overall wealth. Whether you’re struggling with debt or just trying to be smarter with it, I can help answer your […]

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Thursday’s need-to-know money news

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Today’s top story: Why university checking accounts don’t make the grade. Also in the news: Financial steps to take in your 30s, personal finance calculators, and the savings habits of the super rich. University Checking Accounts Don’t Make the Grade High overdraft fees are a dealbreaker. 7 Important Financial Steps to Take in Your 30s […]

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Wednesday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: How to improve your online banking security. Also in the news: Avoiding overwhelming student debt, getting the most out of your 401(k) plan, and 12 cheap ways to keep your kids busy this summer. 5 Ways to Improve Your Online Banking Security Protecting your information. 8 College Planning Tips to Avoid Overwhelming […]

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Debt Forgiveness Always Has a Catch

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The Credit Card Debt Forgiveness Act and the Obama Student Loan Forgiveness Program don’t exist. The IRS won’t erase your tax debt just because you say you can’t pay it. Even when debt forgiveness options are available, they can be loaded with traps such as hard-to-follow rules, unexpected tax bills and damage to your credit […]

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Tuesday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: How life insurance companies learn all of your secrets. Also in the news: How to avoid overwhelming student loan debt, questions parents should answer before paying for a wedding, and financial tips to ease the transition from military to civilian life. How Life Insurance Companies Learn Your Best-Kept Secrets It’s all in […]

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Monday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: College counselors spill financial aid secrets. Also in the news: How to tell if you’re on track for retirement, why new grads have a huge retirement savings advantage, and the 401(k) mistakes that could cost you a bundle. College Counselors Spill 6 Financial Aid Secrets Get the inside scoop. Do the Math […]

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Q&A: Spreading out the tax hit from capital gains

Dear Liz: We are in the lowest tax bracket. If we sell a capital gains asset worth several hundred thousand dollars, does that put us in a higher bracket and we pay 20% or do we remain in the lower bracket and pay 15%? Answer: In the two lowest federal income tax brackets, the capital […]

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