Wednesday February 19, 2014
What type of mortgage should you get?
A fixed rate mortgage is one in which your monthly payment stays the same, regardless of what happens in the overall economy. If we experience a crisis that causes the average interest rate to skyrocket, you don't have to worry because your monthly payment is going to stay the same.
An adjustable rate mortgage changes over time, just as the markets change. The advantage is that you might be able to capture lower interest rates during times when the market is favorable, but the disadvantage is that your interest rate might explode into a payment that you can't make.
Learn more about mortgages in this article. Then leave your comments in the forum!
Saturday February 15, 2014
How should you spend your limited funds?
University of Colorado researchers found that spending money on experiences, like traveling or skiing, creates more "ongoing satisfaction" than spending on physical objects, like handbags or shoes.
They noted that memories tend to get better over time. You remember taking the kids to the water park, but you -- over time -- forget about the fact that your kids were cranky during the car ride.
So if you're going to budget your discretionary money towards something fun -- opt for a vacation, rather than a nicer piece of furniture.
Wednesday February 12, 2014
Did you catch our interview with bestselling personal finance expert Jane Bryant Quinn?
If not, don't worry -- you can read it here.
This leading expert on money management talks about:
- Using envelopes to track your spending
- How much you should borrow for college
- The best way to pay down debt
.... and much more! Check out our interview with Jane Bryant Quinn, and leave your comments in the forum!
Monday February 10, 2014
How much does Fluffy or Fido cost?
People often don't want to talk about the costs associated with owning a dog or a cat. After all, they're part of the family.
But in reality you need to budget for pet ownership costs. You may not realize how much those little expenses add up: Veterinary appointments, vaccinations, food, toys, and boarding - these can add up to more than $1,000 a year to your household budget, even if you are not spending on anything particularly unusual or extravagant.
How can you budget for the cost of a new pet? You'll have to find other areas within your budget that you are willing to trim. Can you cut your cable bill and put that money in a "pet care fund"? Can you dine out at restaurants one fewer time per month?
Use these worksheets to write out your budget. Then figure out what categories you can trim in order to make room for other things in your life that are more important to you ... like Fluffy and Fido.