Blogs

Pay Down Debt or Save for Retirement?

You can use a variety of strategies to pay off debt, many of which can cut not only the amount of time it will take to pay off the debt but also the total interest paid. But like many people, you may be torn between paying off debt and the need to save for retirement. Both are important; both can help give you a more secure future. If you're not sure you can afford to tackle both at the same time, which should you choose?

There's no one answer that's right for everyone, but here are some of the factors you should consider when making your decision.

Financial Survival After a Job Loss

You may have lost your job already, or it's something you're concerned about. Either way, the keys to surviving a job loss financially are to plan ahead, take stock of your income, and cut your expenses.

Socially Responsible Investing

Investing with an eye toward promoting social, political, or environmental concerns (or at least not supporting activities you feel are harmful) doesn't mean you have to forgo pursuing a return on your money. Socially responsible investing may allow you to further both your own economic interests and a greater good, in whatever way you define that term.

Disaster Preparedness for Businesses

As a successful business owner, you don't want to think about your operations being interrupted by a natural disaster or other unexpected event. Yet the possibility is a real one.

Understanding the New CARES Act

On March 27, 2020, President Trump signed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the CARES Act) into law. The CARES Act has been enacted as a direct response to the COVID-19 pandemic and is intended to provide immediate and ongoing economic relief to individuals and businesses affected by the crisis. But how does the CARES Act affect you?

 

Refinancing Your Mortgage

A mortgage refinance creates a new mortgage that pays off and replaces your current one. Some of the reasons people refinance is to lower their monthly payment, shorten their loan term, or tap in to their home’s equity to achieve a specific financial goal. But how do you know when to refinance your mortgage? There are several factors to consider before you decide whether refinancing makes sense for you. 

The Joys and Financial Challenges of Parenthood

Parenthood can be both wonderfully rewarding and frighteningly challenging. Children give gifts only a parent can understand — from sticky-finger hugs to heartfelt pleas to tag along on Saturday morning errands. You raise them with a clear goal that you secretly dread will actually take place — that someday they will be grown, independent, and ready to move out on their own, and your work will be over.

As your children travel this long and never-dull road from infancy to adulthood, you try to protect them. You want to make sure that they are financially secure, but meeting expenses can be challenging.

Should You Pay Off Your Mortgage or Invest?

Owning a home outright is a dream that many Americans share. Having a mortgage can be a huge burden, and paying it off may be the first item on your financial to-do list. But competing with the desire to own your home free and clear is your need to invest for retirement, your child's college education, or some other goal. Putting extra cash toward one of these goals may mean sacrificing another. So how do you choose?

Women and Retirement Planning

Women often face special challenges when planning for retirement. Because their careers may be interrupted more often to care for children or elderly parents, women may spend less time in the workforce and earn less money than men in the same age group. As a result, their retirement plan balances, Social Security benefits, and pension benefits are often lower. In addition to earning less, women generally live longer than men, and they may face having to stretch limited retirement savings and benefits over many years.

To meet these financial challenges, women need to consider making retirement planning a priority. Consider the following tips to help yourself or the women in your life plan ahead.

Health Savings Accounts: Are They Just What the Doctor Ordered?

Are health insurance premiums taking too big of a bite out of your budget? Do you wish you had better control over how you spend your health-care dollars? If so, you may be interested in an alternative to traditional health insurance called a health savings account (HSA).