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Responsible Use Of Credit Or Debt Trouble? How To Recognize The Difference

Posted in Borrowing Money
March 14th 2017 by
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Debt may be a four-letter word, but it certainly has its place. A home mortgage, for example, is often necessary. Without the ability to borrow money to finance a home, most of us would be stuck renting, because who has hundreds of thousands of dollars for such a purchase? And a credit card with a reasonable rate and a manageable balance can help keep your credit score up and even provide rewards. However, debt does have a dark side. And it’s important to know when your use of credit is a good thing, as well as when it’s time to cut back…

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Debt Settlement: Pros and Cons

Posted in Borrowing Money
March 8th 2017 by
1 comment

If you feel like you’re drowning in debt, then debt settlement may seem like an appealing option. Debt settlement involves working with your creditors to settle your debt for less than you owe. Creditors are often willing to settle because debt collection agencies will purchase the debt for less than the balance anyway. And if you declare bankruptcy, they might not get anything. But what’s in it for you? And what are the drawbacks? How Debt Settlement Can Help Debt settlement relieves you of your debt without having to declare bankruptcy.  It’s a one-and-done deal and you have a clean…

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How Can I Save On The Costs Of Raising A Child?

December 21st 2016 by
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Q: My partner and I are excited to soon bring home our own little bundle of joy. How can we save money while raising our baby? A: It’s hard to work and juggle child care around normal adult responsibilities! Costs have gone up as well- raising a child from birth to age 18 can cost over $300,000. That is over $16,000 per year. Here are four ways you can save on child care costs: 1.) Use pre-tax dollars Take advantage of a workplace benefit. If your employer offers a Flexible Spending Account (FSA), make an additional contribution to cover a…

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Is My Insurance Enough When Disaster Strikes?

Posted in Home Ownership
November 8th 2016 by
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Q: The news coverage of hurricanes Matthew and Nicole had me worried. What can I do to disaster-proof my home? A: Disaster preparedness is a big topic. Have supplies and an emergency plan on hand. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has a detailed guide for improving personal preparedness at Ready.gov. When it comes to your home, insurance may not always be enough in every natural disaster. Read on for three insurance pitfalls and what you can do about them. 1.) Natural disaster exemptions The pitfall: Many insurance policies specifically exclude natural disasters, or are very selective about the kind of…

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Is Skip-a-Pay Right for You?

Posted in Borrowing Money
November 1st 2016 by
2 comments

Many credit unions, Aspire included, offer members the option to skip their loan payments certain months of the year. December and January are two months this service is typically offered. As a one-time thing, it can be a great convenience. It’s when you do it multiple times that things can get a little muddled. While taking advantage of skip-a-pay offers may make things easier in the short-term, it’s not necessarily the right choice for long-term financial wellness. Here’s what you need to think about before skipping. You Could End Up Upside-down on Your Auto Loan If you owe more than your…

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