Wednesday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: Make sure a new holiday credit card plays well with others. Also in the news: How one couple paid off over $200K of debt in six years, how to tell if consolidating your student loans would actually save you money, and the 10 best finance movies of the decade.

Make Sure a New Holiday Credit Card Plays Well With the Others
1 in 4 consumers will open a new credit card over the holidays.

How I Ditched Debt: ‘Happiness Journey’ Fueled Payoff
How one couple paid off over $200K in six years.

Here’s how to tell if consolidating your student loans would actually save you money
Not all loan consolidations are equal.

The 10 Best Finance Movies of the Decade
Financial lessons on the big screen.

Wednesday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: What to do when your first student loan payment is due. Also in the news: Van life reality check – 7 questions to shape your travels, why you should stop hoarding your credit card points and travel rewards, and how to spend less when you’re moving on short notice.

What to Do When Your First Student Loan Payment Is Due
Take a deep breath.

Van Life Reality Check: 7 Questions to Shape Your Travels
Do you really want to spend a week in the back of a van?

Why you should stop hoarding your credit card points and travel rewards
They depreciate in value.

How to Spend Less When You’re Moving on Short Notice
Asking for help is key.

Tuesday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: Employers who chip in on your student loans. Also in the news: Six unexpected things you can find on sale on Black Friday, how to sign up for ACA health insurance for 2020, and spending tips for millennials can help anyone who would like to survive the holidays without debt.

These Employers Chip in on Your Student Loans
One of the best perks.

Six unexpected things you can find on sale on Black Friday
Look for travel deals.

How to Sign Up for ACA Health Insurance for 2020
It’s open enrollment time.

Spending tips for millennials can help anyone who would like to survive the holidays without debt
Win the holidays without going broke.

Thursday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: How to beat basic economy airfare at its own game. Also in the news: Employers who chip in on your student loans, the pros and cons of refinancing your student loans, and this rule of thumb about credit card use could be costing you.

How to Beat Basic Economy at Its Own Game
A Points Nerd explains how.

These employers chip in on your student loans
How different companies assist their employees.

Is it worth it to refinance your student loans?
The pros and cons.

This rule of thumb about credit card use could be costing you
Credit utilization is a major credit score factor.

Wednesday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: Your student debt doesn’t always die with you. Also in the news: 10 ways to meet a credit card’s minimum spend requirement, how today’s Fed rate cut affects you, and how to churn credit cards without getting penalized.

Your Student Debt Doesn’t Always Die With You
It all depends on the type of loan.

10 Ways to Meet a Credit Card’s Minimum Spend Requirement
Don’t let your rewards slip away.

Here’s how the Fed rate cut affects you
Cheaper loans, lower interest on savings.

How to Churn Credit Cards Without Getting Penalized
Targeting those sign-up bonuses.

Wednesday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: 6 places to shop on Black Friday. Also in the news: Is a 580 credit score good or bad, a new bill would make for-profit colleges ineligible for federal student loans, and what to do if a stranger sends you money on Venmo.

6 Places to Shop on Black Friday — Big-Boxes and Beyond
Thinking outside the big box.

580 Credit Score: Good or Bad?
Steps to take to get out of the bad place.

Bill would make for-profit colleges ineligible for federal student loans
Many of these schools aren’t accredited.

What to Do If a Stranger Sends You Money on Venmo
The latest scam.

Q&A: Should you pay off student loans or save for retirement? Both, and here’s why

Dear Liz: What are your recommendations for a recent dental school graduate, now practicing in California, who has about $250,000 of dental school loans to pay off but who also knows the importance of starting to save for retirement?

Answer: If you’re the graduate, congratulations. Your debt load is obviously significant, but so is your earning potential. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the median pay for dentists nationwide is more than $150,000 a year. The range in California is typically $154,712 to $202,602, according to Salary.com.

Ideally, you wouldn’t have borrowed more in total than you expected to earn your first year on the job. That would have made it possible to pay off the debt within 10 years without stinting on other goals. A more realistic plan now is to repay your loans over 20 years or so. That will lower your monthly payment to a more manageable level, although it will increase the total interest you pay. If you can’t afford to make the payments right now on a 20-year plan, investigate income-based repayment plans, such as Pay As You Earn (PAYE) or Revised Pay As You Earn (REPAYE), for your federal student loans.

Like other graduates, you’d be wise to start saving for retirement now rather than waiting until your debt is gone. The longer you wait to start, the harder it is to catch up, and you’ll have missed all the tax breaks, company matches and tax-deferred compounding you could have earned.

Also be sure to buy long-term disability insurance, even though it may be expensive. Losing your livelihood would be catastrophic, since you would still owe the education debt, which typically can’t be erased in bankruptcy.

Friday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: Would student loan refinancing pay off for you? Also in the news: How store credit cards can leave you unprotected, the newest workplace perk that looks a lot like a payday loan, and the best (and worst) tippers in America.

Would Student Loan Refinancing Pay Off for You?
The type of loan you have matters.

How Store Credit Cards Can Leave You Unprotected
Fewer protections could leave you vulnerable.

The newest workplace perk looks a lot like a payday loan
Checking the fine print.

The best (and worst) tippers in America
Not a good look, Millennials.

Wednesday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: What to do if you lose your credit card. Also in the news: Chime and Varo launch free programs to pay account overdrafts, half of student loan borrowers fear they’ll be in debt forever, and why you should never spend the money a bank accidentally deposits into your account.

What to Do If You Lose Your Credit Card
Don’t panic, but act quickly.

Chime, Varo Launch Free Programs to Pay Account Overdrafts
New programs from the mobile banks.

Half of student loan borrowers worry they’ll be in debt forever, study finds
Graduates have major financial regrets.

If the Bank Accidentally Deposits Money in Your Account, Don’t Spend It
Fight the temptation.

Monday’s need-to-know money news

Today’s top story: How student loan fees work and what they cost. Also in the news: Making renting work for your financial goals, what millennials get wrong about Social Security, and does the new Apple credit card live up to the hype?

How Student Loan Fees Work and What They Cost
Origination fees can be costly.

Make Renting Work for Your Financial Goals
It could help you buy your dream home down the line.

What Millennials Get Wrong About Social Security
Time for some mythbusting.

Does the new Apple Card live up to all the hype?
Reviews are mixed.