Archive for October, 2012

Tips for Riding Out Hurricane Sandy

Posted on October 29, 2012 by Saldutti

For those in the path of Hurricane Sandy, the wind, rain, floods and potential blackouts are on the way.  If you are sheltered in place with adequate food, water, batteries and other supplies, you are likely to be well-prepared for the approaching weather threat. However, there are some simple mistakes that many people make that can potentially put their family’s health in danger. Former head of emergency response and preparedness for the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Dr. Richard Besser, offers three simple tips to keep you, your family, and even your pets, safe. Tip #1 – In an Outage, Approach…

Hauntingly Helpful Halloween Hints

Posted on October 24, 2012 by Saldutti

Do you find that the most frightening part of Halloween is paying too much for all the fun stuff you need to celebrate?  Just three weeks away, Halloween spending is expected to hit record highs in 2012.  Consumers plan to spend an average of $80 on costumes, candy and decorations, up more than 10% from last year, according to survey results released by the National Retail Federation (NRF).  About 170 million people are expected to celebrate this year, or seven in 10 Americans. In total, Halloween spending this year is expected to top $8 billion, the NRF estimates.  The estimate…

Election 2012: Don’t Wait on Washington to Fix Your Finances

Posted on October 23, 2012 by Saldutti

A presidential election is coming up soon – maybe you’ve heard? And it’s not just Obama and Romney who’ve pinned their hopes to the outcome on Election Day. Many people are convinced that their own personal financial futures depend on the “right” man taking office.  There is no doubt our country is facing some real economic challenges. The national debt has risen to more than $16 trillion. We’ve faced years of historic levels of unemployment. Millions of folks are facing retirement wondering if they have enough money saved to meet their basic needs.  There are many important questions to answer. Should…

Is It Time to Have "The Talk" With Your Kids?

Posted on October 18, 2012 by Saldutti

At what age should you start to teach your kids about money and personal finance?  The truth is, it’s never too early.  These are critical skills that we all need, but they aren’t a part of the curriculum at most schools which is why it is important for parents to instill good habits in their kids at home.  Learnvest.com CEO Alexa Von Tobel offers the following sound advice: Let’s Talk – Psychologists have found that the first money memories that we have – whether good or bad – will project how we will handle money when we’re older.  Von Tobel suggests starting an open…

7 Deadly Sins: Financial Mistakes to Avoid at All Costs

Posted on October 16, 2012 by Saldutti

Who among us has not made a costly financial blunder? Admit it – we all make some dumb moves for which we have to pay a pretty penny. Research by the Consumer Federation of America and Primerica found that 2 out of 3 Americans say they have made at least one “really bad decision,” and almost half of those questioned (47%) acknowledged that they had made more than one financial bad decision. The median cost of these bad decisions was $5,000, but the average cost was $23,000. That we make financial boo-boos is not surprising, but the report also found…

Common Myths About Debt Collection

Posted on October 12, 2012 by Saldutti

Today more than 30 million consumers have delinquent or defaulted accounts under collection, averaging $1,400 each.  “Repayment of consumer debt is the lifeblood of America’s credit-based system and vitally important to the national and state economies,” said Pat Morris, CEO of the Association of Credit and Collection Professionals (ACA).  “It helps ensure that affordable credit is available, goods and services remain affordable, sustains jobs and supports keeping taxes low.” While they are often portrayed negatively, debt collection professionals serve a vital purpose.  As an industry, third-party debt collectors help employ more than 300,000 people, pay nearly $2 billion in federal, state…

Student Loans: The Effects of Delinquency & Default

Posted on October 10, 2012 by Saldutti

It’s October – time for football, falling leaves, bonfires and cool, crisp evenings.  But for many recent graduates, it’s also a far less exciting season: time to start repaying student loans.  Your fleeting six-month grace period is almost finished. The Student Loan Ranger blog has compiled some tips for entering repayment and what to do if you aren’t able to shoulder the financial burden just yet. Now is the time to grab the bull by the horns and figure out exactly what you’re facing. Make a list of all your student loans. Federal loans are in the National Student Loan…

Colleges that Lead to the Most and Least Debt

Posted on October 04, 2012 by Saldutti

Students at Princeton University not only attend one of the best National Universities in the country, they also are likely leaving school with less debt than most of their peers.  Members of Princeton’s class of 2011 who borrowed for school graduated with an average of $5,000 in debt, the school reported to U.S. News & World Report. That’s the lowest class average of any National University, and well below the national average of $24,445. Of the 270 ranked colleges in the U.S. News 2013 Best National Universities, 229 reported indebtedness data. Other highly ranked schools are comparatively good deals, too: Class…

Finances and Football: Lessons Learned from the Gridiron

Posted on October 03, 2012 by Saldutti

At first glance, football might seem like a complicated sport. Especially when you listen to guys like Peyton Manning bark out strange code words in the huddle.  What in the world does it mean? Your guess is as good as ours and apart from a few private lessons with Manning, it’s doubtful we’ll ever figure it out.  Financial writer and radio host Dave Ramsey (DaveRamsey.com) suggests that you can learn some other stuff from football – important life lessons about money, leadership and the like – even if the play calls don’t make sense.  Trust the people who’ve been there before…