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This That & Chit Chat

September 30, 2022
by: Banzai

What a Car Loan Costs

When shopping for a car, it's usually best to start by shopping for a car loan.

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September 26, 2022
by: banzai

Opening Your First Account

Opening an account at a bank or credit union is the first step toward owning your personal finances. Best of all? It’s super easy.

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September 16, 2022
by: banzai

7 Internet Safety Rules

Follow these 7 internet safety rules to help keep yourself and others safe online.

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September 9, 2022
by: IAMT

How to Overcome ‘Credit Card Shyness’

News outlets and credit card companies are quick to label millennials as being credit card-shy. According to a recent survey, millennials apparently fear their credit card debt more than climate change, the threat of war and even death. It may sound like an overreaction, but the underlying trend is substantial: millennials are carrying fewer cards and have lower balances, compared to the previous generation of young adults. 

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September 2, 2022
by: banzai

Improve Your Cybersecurity

It’s likely you use a phone, computer, or some other device every day (you’re even using one right now!). But just because you use it often doesn’t mean you can let your guard down.

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August 26, 2022
by: Banzai

Getting a Car

When looking for a new car, you have three main options: buy used, buy new, or lease.

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August 11, 2022

Check It Out

Still stashing money under beds, in ceiling tiles, or under floorboards? You may even use a safe to protect your cash. Yes, these are fun, creative ways to secure money, but they aren't great for all your income. Instead, it’s time to take safe-guarding your money a little more seriously. Checking accounts—they’re serious—and safe.

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August 11, 2022
by: IAMT

When You Can't Afford Your Minimum Payments

It’s scary to find yourself in a situation where you can’t afford your monthly debt payments. Whether that’s due to a sudden life change, like a job loss or illness, or if you’ve simply found yourself unable to keep up, there are steps you can take.

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August 3, 2022
by: IAMT

College Budget Breakdown

Most people ask, "How much does college cost?"—that’s the first mistake. It’s not to say this question isn’t answerable, but grouping college into one huge expense can be a little deceiving.

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August 1, 2022
by: IAMT

Auto Insurance

Auto insurance is not only often a legal requirement, it's also absolutely vital to your financial health.

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July 19, 2022
by: IAMT

What is a HELOC?

A home equity line of credit (HELOC) is a line of credit that allows you to tap into your home’s equity.

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July 15, 2022
by: Banzai

To Buy or Not to Buy?

They say there’s no place like home, but does that mean you have to purchase one to get the benefits? Just like everything else, buying a home has its pros and cons.

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July 8, 2022
by: IAMT

When’s the best time to write a business plan?

Writing a business plan is an essential part of building a successful business. At its core, a business plan is a road map for your project: it establishes your purpose, it sets goals and expectations, and it forecasts the relationship between cost and revenue. Business plans exist in many forms: some formal and some informal.

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June 30, 2022
by: IAMT

The Effect of Time on Investing

Investing can seem like a very risky, complex and fast-moving process. With endless combinations of investment vehicles to choose from, it can be difficult to take your first step as an investor—especially with the knowledge that all investments carry the risk of losing some or all of your money. So why bother?

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June 22, 2022
by: IAMT

Where You Seek Financial Advice Says a Lot About You

How did you decide where to open your first bank account? Where did you learn to budget or pay bills? If you have a money question now, what do you do? Who do you turn to?

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June 16, 2022
by: IAMT

How to Stop Lifestyle Creep in its Tracks

Have you ever caught yourself daydreaming about all of the amazing lifestyle changes that await you just beyond your next pay raise? Have you ever fantasized about how to spend a work bonus, only to have the money instantly disappear into your monthly spending? If this sounds familiar, you might be prone to lifestyle creep.

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June 10, 2022
by: IAMT

Why Is It Called A Credit Union?

While bank and banking are universally understood and accepted terms, the term credit union is still largely misunderstood and unknown to many. Credit union is an unusual term, isn’t it? Is it just another name for a bank? Is it a credit card company? Do I have to be in a union to join?

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June 2, 2022
by: IAMT

It Pays To Start Saving Now

In case you haven’t heard, compound interest is the best.You may remember it as an equation you had to memorize for math class, but it’s so much more than that. It’s the concept that powers all sorts of savings and investment products and, over time, allows you to turn your money into, well, more money!

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May 27, 2022

The Dos and Don’ts of Debt Repayment

Consumer debt is an extremely contradictory part of our personal finances: it’s at once common and incredibly personal. According to numerous sources, the majority of US adults owe money in some way, shape or form—and yet what this consumer debt represents can vary drastically from person to person. To some, a debt might signify a major accomplishment or progress toward a large goal. To others, it might be a constant reminder of a time of crisis or hardship. The decisions that lead us to consumer debt can be thoughtful and deliberate, or rushed and misguided. It is perhaps these differences that make it challenging to talk openly about debt for fear of judgment.

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May 18, 2022
by: IAMT

Living On Your Own And “Bill Time”

Living on your own for the first time can be empowering. It means having independence and all the things that come with it. Some of those things—like not having to share a bathroom—are wonderful. Others—like killing spiders yourself—are not so fun. And leading the pack in the not-so-fun category: bills.

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May 17, 2022
by: SavvyMoney

College Planning

While the price tag for a college education has edged down slightly during the pandemic, it’s important to plan ahead to determine how to fun – or partially fun – tuition, fees, room, board and everything else for four (or more) years of undergraduate studies.

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May 12, 2022
by: banzai

Romance & Dating Scams

They love me, they love me not. Here’s how you can prevent yourself from falling victim to some of the sneakiest crimes out there—romance scams.

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May 5, 2022
by: banzai

Scams Targeting Seniors

Scammers target seniors more aggressively than any other group. Recognizing the most common scams helps prevent your money and personal information from getting stolen.

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April 29, 2022
by: IAMT

Learn to Spend, Save and Give

For most people, spending comes naturally. Saving up for something special is harder. And setting money aside for giving is really hard.

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April 22, 2022
by: IAMT

What does it mean to be a credit union member?

Even though there are over 5,000 credit unions in the United States, many misconceptions about their structure and their services still exist. One popular-but-false assumption is that the term “credit union member” is interchangeable with the term “credit union customer.” It might seem like a harmless mistake, but the concept of membership is what sets credit unions apart from other financial institutions. A “member” isn’t an empty marketing term—it reflects your credit union’s commitment to co-operative values and shapes your entire banking experience. As a member, you’re a part owner, you have a say in how your credit union is run and you get to share in its success in tangible ways.

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April 14, 2022
by: IAMT

Why Do People Borrow Money?

Borrowing money comes at a cost. This extra cost is called interest. If borrowing money costs more, why do people still do it? Here are three reasons why:

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April 8, 2022

Choosing your financial institution

What was the very first financial choice you ever made?

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March 31, 2022
by: IAMT

What is Opportunity Cost?

You make many choices every day. You choose how to spend your time. You choose how to spend your energy. You also choose how to spend your money.

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March 24, 2022

The 3 Hidden Expenses of Pet Ownership

According to the American Pet Products Association, nearly 70% of all US households own a pet. That translates into an estimated $86 billion spent on food, supplies, medical care and pet services in 2018. Although the love and companionship our furry (or feathered, or scaly) friends provide is priceless, it’s impossible to ignore the effect that pet ownership has on our wallet.

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March 18, 2022
by: Banzai

Ransomware

Everyone has secrets—personal data, passwords, private documents, etc—and people will spend lots of money to keep this information secret or gain access to it. Ransomware is just one way that hackers win access to personal information, expecting its owner will pay to win it back.

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March 4, 2022
by: IAMT

Four Questions to Ask Yourself Before Signing a Mortgage

Asking the right questions is an important part of every financial decision you make, and home ownership is no exception. If you’ve been thinking about buying a place, preliminary research will turn up a long checklist of questions for you to ask at every part of the process. There are questions for your financial institution, questions for your mortgage broker and questions for your real estate agent. But what about the questions you should be asking yourself?

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February 23, 2022
by: IAMT

Buying vs. Renting a Home: Are You Getting the Right Advice?

The average person moves residences about 11 times in their lifetime. That provides a lot of opportunity to confront the following question: is it better to own your home or to rent it? It’s a huge decision that affects your lifestyle as much as it does your finances, and the answer will vary depending on who you ask. There are compelling arguments to be made for both sides and the resulting advice—though well-intentioned—can quickly become confusing and contradictory. So, is paying rent really just a waste of money? Or is it true that you can make more money by renting than by owning a home? Take a closer look at six snippets of common owning-versus-renting advice:

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February 17, 2022
by: IAMT

Pay Yourself First: How to Automatically Start Saving More Money

Like going to the gym or eating a healthy diet, saving money is one of those concepts that’s simple to grasp but weirdly challenging to put into practice. We understand its benefits. We agree that it’s essential to our well-being. We know that it’s something we should be doing. But paycheck after paycheck, it’s the same routine: after the bills have been paid and the regular expenses have been looked after, there just isn’t quite enough left over for our savings goals. We blame our lack of financial willpower and promise ourselves we’ll do better next paycheck, but more often than not, the cycle repeats itself. If this scenario seems all too familiar, consider automating your personal finances in order to pay yourself first.

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February 10, 2022
by: IAMT

The Secret History of the Wall Street Bull

Bulls and bears can be considered the unofficial mascots of the stock market. They represent the upward and downward movements of the stock market over a period of time and have even come to describe investor behavior (optimistic investors are said to be bullish, while investors with a pessimistic outlook are said to be bearish). In a field typically known for its confusing financial terminology and often uninspired language, the bull and bear symbols really stand out—and this is especially true in Lower Manhattan.

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January 26, 2022
by: IAMT

Breaking Up with Name Brands

Picture this: you’re steering your shopping cart through the sliding doors of the supermarket, shopping list in hand. As you walk the aisles, there’s a strategy you can use to save an average of 33% on your entire purchase. It doesn’t require any coupon clipping or rewards cards. And the best part? You still get every single item on your list. The secret? Buying private-label products instead of brand-name products.

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January 24, 2022
by: SavveyMoney

Frugal February Challenge

Frugal February

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January 21, 2022
by: banzai

Recognizing and Avoiding Scams

Con artists cheat Americans out of billions of dollars every year. Recognizing red flags for potential scams can help protect you, your loved ones, and your hard earned cash.

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January 14, 2022
by: IAMT

Keep or Toss: How Long Should I Hang Onto My Financial Documents?

Every year, it’s nice to do a bit of “financial spring cleaning” and declutter your filing cabinet, your desk drawers, and the various hiding places where miscellaneous scraps of paper tend to accumulate and multiply. Read on to find out what you should be saving, and what’s OK to shred.

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January 7, 2022
by: IAMT

Boost Your Credit Score: 4 Myths Debunked

Credit scores are an area of personal finance that seem a lot more mysterious than they actually are. Many people believe that improving them is a matter of trial and error and, as a result, there’s a lot of “credit score advice” floating around that can end up doing more harm than good. Four common credit score myths have been rounded up and debunked below:

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December 23, 2021

Are Checks Obsolete?

Checks hold an odd place in our personal finances. In many ways, checks seem like relics from a previous era. We maybe write one or two checks a month (usually for rent or similar bill-paying situations where electronic payment simply isn’t an option). This is vastly different from only a few decades ago, when checks represented more than 85% of all non-cash retail payments. (Can you imagine whipping out a checkbook in line at the grocery store? Times have certainly changed!)

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December 20, 2021
by: Savvymoney

5 Financial New Year’s Resolutions

5 Financial New Year’s Resolutions & How to fulfill them

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December 16, 2021

Keeping Your Money Safe

Imagine this: you are out for a walk and you find a stack of shiny gold bars. Where do you put your treasure to keep it safe?

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December 16, 2021
by: Banzia

Be Prepared, Because Life Happens

An emergency fund is an essential part of your personal finances. Its importance is stressed in almost every personal finance book and budgeting blog, and yet 26% of Americans currently have no emergency fund in place. Of those who do have an emergency fund, up to two-thirds do not have the often-recommended six months’ worth of expenses saved up.

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December 9, 2021

5 Identity Theft Jackpots (and How You Can Safeguard Against Them)

Identity theft is nothing new, and yet it still manages to cost its victims billions of dollars (yes, that’s billions with a “b”) globally each year—not to mention the time and hassle involved in recovering a stolen identity.

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December 1, 2021
by: SavvyMoney

5 points of Financial Data you should check before end of year.

Prepare your tax documents – One third of Americans file their taxes at the last minute. Filing late could cost you additional penalties, interest, or fees. Most common tax forms include:Wage information
Photo identification
Personal information for all filers
Previous year(s) tax returns
Charitable donations
Childcare or education expenses
Itemized medical expenses

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November 23, 2021

5 Totally Free Things You Can Do to Support Your Local Economy

Supporting your local community is a positive thing—it builds relationships, it strengthens the local economy, and it makes your neighborhood a happier and healthier place to work and play. The most obvious way to support your surrounding community is with the choices you make with your dollars. Money you spend in your community is recirculated in the local economy instead of being extracted from it. This translates into more local jobs, more opportunities for local business owners and service providers, and more tax dollars that stay in the community. Supplementing your grocery shopping list with fresh farmers’ market finds, choosing independent cafés and restaurants over national chains, and purchasing art and gifts from local vendors are all simple ways to support your local economy.

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November 18, 2021
by: Banzai

Filling Out the FAFSA

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is an application for financial aid made up of scholarships and grants that the government awards to students based on their needs.

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November 11, 2021
by: Banzai

Working with a Mortgage Lender

Applying for a mortgage is a big endeavor. Most lenders require you to complete a mortgage application—a comprehensive financial statement.

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October 27, 2021
by: Banzai

The Cost of a Mortgage

A mortgage is likely going to be one of the largest loans you'll take out in your life. It's essential to understand all that goes into the cost and your responsibility in paying it back.

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