What is Private Mortgage Insurance and Why do you Need it?

Private mortgage insurance (PMI) is an insurance policy required by a lender that a borrower must purchase if the borrower has less than 20 percent or more in down payment when purchasing a home. The lender is in a safe position against default when the lender’s investment is 80 percent or less of the home value.  Private mortgage insurance is included in the monthly mortgage payments.

How does the borrower benefit from private mortgage insurance?

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Can Your Loved Ones Inherit Your Debt?

Stack of Money

There is an alarming trend that shows more and more people are carrying their debts into retirement with them. Some of these people are intentionally increasing their credit card debt with no plans to pay them off.  Their reasons vary from necessities of life to vacations and everything in between, but this leaves their loved ones with a question that needs answering – can family members inherit debt?
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How to Avoid Free Trial Scams and What to Do if You Suspect You are a Victim

With the economy still stuck in limbo, many people have been looking for a way to save money and cut back where they can. Couponing has had a boost in popularity lately, and deal websites like Groupon and Living Social have been thriving.  Along with these trends, people have been increasingly signing up for free trial offers.  “Try before you buy” has allowed many consumers to give a product or service a test drive before purchasing.  As sweet as that sounds, the FTC has some concerns and want you to be aware of potential scammers, taking advantage of you.
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Shoeboxed Review – Organize Your Receipts and Business Cards

How Shoeboxed Works

Whether you’re looking to do some cleaning, looking to go green or paperless, or just want to get a little more organized, Shoeboxed.com can help you.  Shoeboxed offers a service where you can send in your papers/receipts that you want a digital copy of, they’ll extract the data for you, and it’s all available in your own account.

How Shoeboxed Works

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Steps to Take to Avoid Retiring in Debt

Debt trap

National debt is a massive problem in our country and there’s no shortage of advertising reminding us that we need to pay off our personal debts. Sadly, statistics clearly indicate that the numbers of individuals who are retiring in debt are on the increase, so much so that over half of those who retire are in the red.

Earlier this year Newsweek reported that the golden years have been severely tarnished with mounting medical expenses, rising credit card debt, and little or no savings.  Newsweek stated that a law professor at the University of Michigan found that individuals over the age of 55 now account for more than 20 percent of all bankruptcies in the U.S.  CESI Debt Solutions, a nonprofit personal-finance firm, conducted a study and discovered that 56 percent of retirees carried outstanding debts with them as they left the workforce.
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ShareBuilder Now ING DIRECT Investing, a Redesigned Site, and a Bonus!

ShareBuilder has undergone a facelift!

Not only has their parent company, ING DIRECT, redesigned the site to make it easier to use, they have also renamed it – ING DIRECT Investing.

It’s still the same awesome site it’s been when it was created over 10 years ago.  Their goal has remained the same: Bring Wall Street to Main Street.

I think they have succeeded.  They make it easy for the average investor to invest in the market.

So why a redesign and rebrand?

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IRA Maximum Contribution Limits – Roth and Traditional

Roth IRA Contribution Limits 2011

An IRA can be a great tool to help you save for retirement and the traditional and Roth both have interesting tax advantages. But the amount you can contribute every year is limited.  The Federal government imposes limits as to how much money can be contributed to both the Roth IRA and the traditional IRA accounts.  An account holder’s age (and income) is also a factor in how much s/he can contribute per year.

The investors who are 49 years old or younger have had maximum limits that are $1,000 less that those investors who are 50 years old or older since the 2006-2007 investment year.

The nature of this investment fund demands that an investor contributes the maximum amount of contribution allowed every year in order to enjoy maximum yield.  For example, the contribution amount for a person 49 years of age or younger in 2010 was $5,000.  If he only invests $3,000 in 2010 he can’t add the $2,000 deficit to the $5,000 contribution allowed in 2011.  The IRA is a “use it or lose it” investment fund which means any money not invested into an IRA is lost forever.Continue Reading