Thursday’s need-to-know money news

imagesToday’s top story: How to tame your student loans. Also in the news: Why you shouldn’t skimp on insurance, critical personal finance tips for your first years after college, and three bills to pay off before you retire.

How to Tame Your Student Loans (Told in Under 350 Words)
Wrangling your student debt.

Don’t Skimp on Your Insurance
Pay now or pay more later.

4 Critical Personal Finance Tips for Your First Years After College
It’s a whole new world.

3 bills to pay off before you retire
Smoother sailing.

Wednesday’s need-to-know money news

wall_street_zombie_moneyToday’s top story: How to handle “expired” debt. Also in the news: Ways to avoid a disclosure catastrophe after closing on your new home, why your small business should have its own credit score, and why you should skip the extended warranty and save the money instead.

How to Handle Time-Barred Debt
Beware of “zobmie debt.”

5 Ways to Avoid a Disclosure Catastrophe After Closing
Pay close attention to the listing language.

Your Small Business Should Have Its Own Credit Score
Protecting your personal credit.

Skip the Extended Warranty and Save the Money Instead
Build a repair savings account instead.

Friday’s need-to-know money news

budgetToday’s top story: Mapping your financial journey. Also in the news: What Wells Fargo’s settlement might mean for you, six unusual ways to get out of debt, and surprising Social Security benefits for divorced spouses.

Mapping Your Financial Journey
Building a roadmap to success.

What Wells Fargo’s $185 Million Settlement May Mean for You
The Wells Fargo wagon has rolled into some big trouble.

6 Unusual Ways to Get Out of Debt
You don’t have to deliver pizzas.

2 surprising Social Security benefits some divorced spouses can get
All is not lost.

Monday’s need-to-know money news

crop380w_istock_000009258023xsmall-dbet-ball-and-chainToday’s top story: Mortgage application forms will look different next year. Also in the news: 5 times you shouldn’t use a credit card, why you should say no to 72-84 month auto loans, and why you need to stop being delusional about debt.

It’s Coming: The First Change to Mortgage Application Forms in 20 Years
An easier to understand application is on the way.

5 Times You Shouldn’t Use a Credit Card
High interest rates could leave you in a debt spiral.

5 Reasons to Say No to 72- and 84-Month Auto Loans
Long term loans set you up for years of negative equity.

Don’t be debt delusional: Quit buying stuff you can’t afford!
Time for a reality check.

Q&A: Divorced, and in debt

Dear Liz: I recently got divorced and found myself in about $50,000 of credit card debt. While I’m struggling to slowly pay off this debt, I do have some money saved in a tax-sheltered annuity as well as a small Roth IRA. Should I use those, take a personal loan or file for bankruptcy?

Answer: A good rule of thumb is to leave retirement money alone for retirement. Early withdrawals can trigger taxes and penalties that eat up one quarter to one half of what you take out. You can always withdraw your contributions tax free from a Roth, but any earnings can trigger taxes and penalties. The biggest cost, though, is the loss of future tax-deferred compounding that can equal 10 times or more of what you take out.

If your credit is good, low-rate balance transfer offers could help you lower the interest rate on your debt so you can pay it off faster. A personal loan from a credit union, your bank or an online lender could work if it offers a low, fixed rate and a repayment term of five years or less.

If you can’t pay this debt off within five years, then you should talk to both a credit counselor (visit the National Foundation for Credit Counseling at www.nfcc.org) and a bankruptcy attorney (referrals from the National Assn. of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys at www.nacba.org).

Wednesday’s need-to-know money news

money-vacation-saveToday’s top story: Overcoming the obstacles between you and retirement. Also in the news: What the President wants to tell college students, what happens when your debt goes to collections, and how to pay less for staying cool this summer.

5 Obstacles Between You and Retirement (and How to Overcome Them)
Clearing the pathway to a solid retirement.

5 Things the President Wants to Tell College Students
Messages for students and student loan borrowers.

What Happens When Your Debt Goes to a Collector?
Not every debt collection process is the same.

Stay cool, but pay less for electricity this summer
Your wallet’s hot enough.

Wednesday’s need-to-know money news

types-of-scholarshipsToday’s top story: Most families don’t plan ahead for college costs. Also in the news: The Brexit effect on mortgages begins to fade, the pros and cons of partial payments, and common money mindsets that are holding you back.

Most Families Don’t Plan Ahead for College Costs, Study Finds
High school graduation is just around the corner.

Brexit Effect Fades; Loan Applications Fall
The Brexit effect on mortgages begins to fade.

Does Making Partial Payments Help?
Is paying someting better than paying nothing?

Common Money Mindsets That Hold You Back
Breaking out of old misconceptions.

Tuesday’s need-to-know money news

o-BOOMERANG-KIDS-facebookToday’s top story: Why not all debt is bad. Also in the news: An explanation of benefits from your health coverage, why your boomerang kid may be sabotaging your retirement, and why it’s time to have the talk about estate planning.

Not All Debt Is Bad
Debt is getting a bad rap.

Check Your Health Coverage With an Explanation of Benefits
Understanding what you’re entitled to.

Everybody Dies. It’s Time to Have the Talk
Avoiding financial disaster.

Your boomerang kid may be sabotaging your retirement
The Bank of Mom and Dad.

Monday’s need-to-know money news

18ixgvpiu0s24jpgToday’s top story: How to save on your cellphone bill when moving. Also in the news: how to survive a job loss, why millennials aren’t in a rush to buy a home, and why you shouldn’t wait to tackle your debt.

Moving? One Simple Change Could Save You Money on Your Cell Phone Bill in a New State
Taxes and fees vary from state to state.

How to Survive a Job Loss
Getting through a financially difficult time.

Are Millennials the Renter Generation?
Not rushing to buy a home.

Don’t Wait Until Your Debt Starts Hurting to Begin Tackling It
The sooner the better.