Monday’s need-to-know money news

Image9Today’s top story: Credit mistakes you’ll regret immediately. Also in the news: Apps to organize your financial life, how to curb impulse buying, and changes you need to make if you’re laid off.

5 Credit Mistakes You’ll Regret Immediately
Avoid making these at all costs.

5 Apps to Organize Your Financial Life
Organization right at your fingertips.

Save the Same Amount You Splurge to Curb Impulse Buying
Getting your spending under control.

Laid off? 9 changes to make today
Making the transition easier.

Friday’s need-to-know money news

Zemanta Related Posts ThumbnailToday’s top story: Steps you should take when you’re 20 years away from retirement. Also in the news: Collecting on a business debt, how to improve your budget, and how to give your investment portfolio a stress test.

8 Steps to Take When You’re 20 Years From Retirement
Time is critical.

Can a Debt Collector Come After Me for a Business Debt?
Assessing your personal risk.

Improve Your Budget By Focusing On How Much Satisfaction Your Money Buys
How much fulfillment will your purchase bring you?

Give Your Investment Portfolio a Stress Test
Hypothetical scenarios can display your portfolio’s strengths and weaknesses.

The end to file-and-suspend: Sorry about that

shutterstock_101159917In June, I wrote a column predicting that Congress eventually would do away with “file and suspend” and other Social Security claiming strategies that the Obama Administration had labeled as “aggressive.” I thought it would take years for lawmakers to act. But the end was closer than many of us thought.

The budget deal quickly moving through Congress would eliminate new file-and-suspend applications 180 days after the bill is signed into law, according to the Fiscal Times. That change could shave as much as $50,000 off the lifetime benefits of couples who were planning to use the strategy to maximize their benefits, according to Laurence Kotlikoff, co-author of the book “Get What’s Yours: The Secrets to Maxing Our Your Social Security.”

If you don’t know, file-and-suspend was created in 2000 as a way to encourage people to keep working. Before that time, primary earners had to apply for their own retirement benefits before their spouses could apply for spousal benefits. With file-and-suspend, primary earners could put off actually receiving their Social Security, allowing their checks to grow, while still allowing their partners to get spousal benefits.

Spousal benefits were created with low- or non-earning spouses in mind, but financial advisors soon discovered file-and-suspend was also a good way to maximize benefits for two high-earning spouses. One could collect “free money” in the form of a spousal benefit before switching to his or her own benefit when it maxed out at age 70.

The growing popularity of the strategy pretty much doomed it. Five years ago, the Center for Retirement Research has estimated that file-and-suspend could cost as much as $9.5 billion each year. The more advisors learned about it, and the more people like me wrote about it, the more strain we were putting on an already troubled system.

 

Friday’s need-to-know money news

seniorslaptopToday’s top story: How to simplify your financial life. Also in the news: Credit card fees you shouldn’t have to pay, the hidden costs of starting your own business, and the amazing credit card features you’ve always wanted.

8 Easy Ways to Simplify Your Financial Life
Sifting through the clutter.

6 outrageous credit card fees you shouldn’t have to pay
Banks will always find a way to get more of your money.

The Hidden Costs of Starting Your Own Business
You’ll need to spend money to make money.

5 Credit Card Features You Wish You Had — That Actually Exist
Choose your own rewards? Sure!

Tuesday’s need-to-know money news

downloadToday’s top story: How to cut the cord to your TV and save money. Also in the news: Apps to teach kids about personal finance, how to handle your credit card debt while you’re unemployed, and what happens to your debt if you get divorced.

How to watch TV for next to nothing
Cutting the cord can save you big bucks.

7 Apps to Teach Your Kids Personal Finance Skills
Trick them into learning!

How to Handle Credit Card Debt While You’re Unemployed
You cannot ignore it.

What Happens to My Debt If I Get a Divorce?
What does and doesn’t stay with you.

Calculate the Opportunity Cost of Your Spending Habit Over Time
Just how much is that daily muffin costing you?

Thursday’s need-to-know money news

605x340xdollar-bills-2015-Dollarphotoclub_67129525.jpg.pagespeed.ic.0DZosyt27WToday’s top story: 3 financial changes you need to know about for 2015. Also in the news: What not to do if you inherit money, how to cash in on uncommon tax breaks, and how visualization can help you manage your finances.

3 Changes That Could Affect Your Financial Life in 2015
Changes to Social Security and retirement savings are on the way.

5 Things Not to Do If You Inherit Money
Don’t quit your day job.

Cash in on uncommon charitable tax breaks
Deductions you may not know about.

How Motivational Images Can Boost Your Finances
Using visualization can keep you in check.

Create Your Budget with Long-Term Life Goals in Mind
Focus on the bigger picture.

Monday’s need-to-know money news

Zemanta Related Posts ThumbnailToday’s top story: Five changes lawmakers have made to your taxes for 2015. Also in the news: Keeping your low-down-payment mortgage affordable, why using a Roth IRA to pay for college could work against you, and three reasons why you can’t stick to a budget.

5 Major Changes Lawmakers Made to Your Taxes
Getting ready for 2015.

How to Keep a Low-Down-Payment Mortgage Affordable
How to handle PMI.

Using a Roth IRA to Pay for College May Work Against You
Your child’s financial aid package could take a hit.

3 reasons why you just can’t stick to a budget
Besides being human.

Retailers’ data breaches could get ‘ugly’
More like ‘uglier’.

Tuesday’s need-to-know money news

-Autumn-autumn-32497070-800-600Today’s top story: The best money moves you can make for the end of the year. Also in the news: How to protect yourself from the next massive security flaw, hackers hit one of the country’s largest grocery store chains, and how to manage your finances when faced with cancer.

The Next Massive Security Flaw You Should Worry About: Bash
Time to check your router.

The Best Money Moves for Autumn
Preparing your budget for the end of the year.

Another card system hack at Supervalu, Albertsons
Keep an eye on your accounts if you’ve shopped at these store.

Despite insurance, 1 in 3 cancer survivors incur $10,000+ debt
What you can do when facing a serious diagnosis.

How Financially Secure Are You?
Could you survive an unexpected emergency?

Thursday’s need-to-know money news

crop380w_istock_000009258023xsmall-dbet-ball-and-chainToday’s top story: How you could be spending too little in retirement. Also in the news: How a late payment could disable your car, what bills to pay when you can’t pay them all, and deciphering the “Nanny Tax”.

7 Signs You’re Spending Too Little In Retirement
Yes, you read that correctly.

Miss a Payment? Good Luck Moving That Car
A late payment could leave you stuck in the driveway.

What Order Do You Pay Bills When You Can’t Pay Them All?
How to manage your finances in difficult times.

Do I Have to Pay ‘Nanny Tax’ on a Babysitter?
If you pay more than $1900 a year, the answer is yes.

How to Be Frugal and Invest the Difference
Even saving small amounts can make a difference.

Tuesday’s need-to-know money news

budgetToday’s top story: How customizing your budget could be the key to success. Also in the news: Preparing yourself financially for a career change, products to make your teenagers money-savvy, and Home Depot confirms a months-long credit data breach.

How to Do a Budget: Customization Is Key
Tailoring your budget could be the key to its success.

5 Ways to Financially Prepare to Go After Your Dream Job
Getting ready to take the big leap.

4 Bank Products to Make Teens Money-Savvy
Prepare your teen to make wise financial choices.

Home Depot Confirms Computer Data System Breach
Retailer offers one year of free credit monitoring to customers.

6 Smart Ways to Use a Credit Card
Keeping yourself out of trouble.