Consider Working at a University to Help Pay College Expenses

My aunt and uncle, both high school graduates with no college education, had nine kids and helped the ones who wanted to go to college pay for their education.

Many of the nine children now hold professional positions such as financial planner and nursing supervisor.  They are all successful adults, and some make very good salaries.

My aunt and uncle were able to help pay a portion of their children’s college costs despite the fact that my uncle worked in a factory for a number of years while my aunt was a homemaker.

How were they able to do it?

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The Three Best Financial Moves You Can Make for Your Child

My grandmother was a young bride during the Great Depression, and some of the frugality she practiced during that time never left her. When I was young, I routinely saw her washing aluminum foil and plastic bags for reuse.

She and my grandfather lived in a trailer park during retirement to minimize their monthly expenses, and when my grandpa died at 88 and later my grandma at 90, they still had a enough money left to give a small inheritance to their nine children.

That type of sacrifice and money management is seen less often nowadays.

In fact, we routinely hear about college students who graduate with thousands of dollars in both student loan and credit card debt and struggle to find a job and pay their bills.

Yet, as a parent, there are three important things you can do for your teen to put them on the financial track that will lead to a life of prosperity.

Three Best Financial Moves You Can Make for Your Child

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Want to Win the Lottery? Better Off Creating Your Own

Roll a dice

When we took a recent trip to Montreal, I was amazed at the number of casinos as we drove through Michigan.

I am originally from Michigan, but I have not lived there for nearly 15 years.  When I did live there, the closest casino to our house was 3 hours away.  Now there are more than a handful within that same 3 hour radius.

Clearly business must be good for the casinos, otherwise they wouldn’t continue to build more.
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How We Found Over $600 to Snowflake on Our Debt in 7 Days

My husband recently completed his Ph.D., and he has since taken on a full-time job.  Now that he is settling into his career and bringing in more money than he did with his assistantship, we are ready to tackle our debt, which includes student loan and credit card debt.  We recently wrote up our debt repayment plan and found that after minimum payments, we only had $2.69 extra to apply to our debt snowball.  Using this basic formula, we would be completely debt free by February, 2017, roughly 5.5 years from now.

However, we don’t want our debt repayment to stretch out that long.
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Don’t Let Your Purchases Fall Prey to Your Emotions

Many U.S. citizens would prefer to pay full price rather than negotiate.  Sometimes it is because they feel uncomfortable negotiating and other times it is because they have become emotionally attached to the thing they want to purchase and don’t want to try to negotiate for fear of losing it.

Psychologists recognize the power of emotional attachment and suggest that if you do want to negotiate for an item, do not hold it or touch it because it shows you are already emotionally attached to the item and “own” it in your mind, which lowers your negotiating power.

While many of us aren’t privy to private negotiations, a barrage of television shows allow us to watch others negotiate—successfully and unsuccessfully.  If you have ever watched TLC’s Say Yes to the Dress, you may be surprised, as I often am, to see a woman go into the bridal shop with a firm budget of say, $4,000.  Perhaps a friend suggests she tries on a beautiful dress, and she does.  She falls in love with the dress and sees herself walking down the aisle in it.  It is HER dress.
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How to Fix an Error on Your Credit Report

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According to CBS News, approximately 80% of credit reports contain errors.  These errors range from minor, such as a misspelling of your name, to an error on your address, to serious such as the same mortgage appearing twice on the report or a loan showing that it is still open when it in fact has been paid off.  These latter examples can be enough to deny you future credit, especially if your debt to income ratio is perceived to be too high thanks to the error.  I myself found an error on my credit report — a student loan I paid off over 12 years ago still shows as being current.

How do these errors occur?  Some may be simple typographical errors, while others occur when a loan is sold to another institution.  Regardless of how the errors occur, it is important that you find them and correct them so that your credit report reflects your true credit history. Continue Reading

Save Money: Attend Community College First

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The cost of college is skyrocketing.  According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the average price for public tuition, room and board during the 2009-2010 school year at a four year institution was $12,804.  For private institutions, it averaged a staggering $32,184.  As government funding has changed to loan-based aid, rather than grant-based aid, many students are easily left with tens of thousands of dollars in student loan debt when they graduate.  If they find a job, which can be difficult in the current economy, they may only make $30,000 a year right out of college.

However, some students have made the choice to put off attending a four year institution and instead begin their college careers at a community college. Continue Reading

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