Monday’s need-to-know money news

imagesToday’s top story: How to avoid 3 bank fees you shouldn’t be paying. Also in the news: One-word answers to your money questions, life insurance in 250 words, and how allowance contracts could help kids learn about money.

How to Avoid 3 Bank Fees You Shouldn’t Be Paying
Don’t pay your bank to access your money.

One-Word Answers To Your Money Questions
Short and sweet.

Life Insurance Explained in (Exactly) 250 Words
No more, no less.

Negotiate “Allowance Contracts” With Your Kids to Teach Them About Money
Put it in writing.

Friday’s need-to-know money news

bank_fee1Today’s top story: How to escape the big banks and their fees. Also in the news: What not to buy at the big warehouse clubs, getting a credit card with poor credit, and why you should pay yourself first before paying any other bills.

Plot Your Escape From the Big Fees of Big Banks
Why give them more of your money?

What not to buy at warehouse clubs
Put back the three gallon drum of mustard.

Can I Get a Credit Card with Poor Credit?
Possibly.

Are You Paying Yourself First? The Money Habit That Can Boost Wealth
Don’t wait until you’ve paid everything else before taking care of you.

Surprising ways to pay for your dream trip abroad
Turning your dream trip into a reality.

Tuesday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: Five things that won’t hurt your credit score. Also in the news: The Golden Rules of personal finance, which banking costs to avoid while shopping for the holidays, and why the holiday season might be the best time to purchase a new home. Gift

5 Things That Won’t Hurt Your Credit Score
You can no longer use your credit score as an excuse for not getting married.

The Golden Rules of Personal Finance
The answers to some of the most common personal finance questions.

5 Banking Costs to Avoid This Holiday Shopping Season
The banks don’t need any presents.

4 Reasons to Buy a House During the Holidays
Less competition during the holidays could save you money.

Will the Body Shop Cut You a Deal?
Car repairs don’t have to crash your wallet.

How to set up savings “buckets”

Dear Liz: You’ve written about how helpful it can be to have “savings buckets” or separate savings accounts earmarked for different goals such as vacations, property tax payments and so on. I have been trying to do this myself, but every bank I find charges so much in fees that it would cost more money than I would save. Either that, or they tie the savings accounts to a “free” checking account that has a high minimum balance. Can you please pass along any information about free savings accounts that have no minimum balance? I cannot use Internet banks because I cannot deposit cash when I have $5 or $10 in my pocket that I would take to the bank.

Answer: Actually, you can. Internet banks can be linked to your checking account at a brick-and-mortar bank. You can take your money to the bank, then transfer it to one of your savings accounts at the Internet bank. Unlike traditional banks, Internet banks such as ING Direct, Ally and FNBO don’t have balance minimums or monthly fees. You can set up several savings accounts without paying extra fees.

You still need a low-cost checking account, of course. You should be able to find one at a local credit union.