How to Create a Low-Cost Will

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Most adults, especially parents, know how important a will is. 

This one document can help determine who will raise your children in the event of your untimely death.  Die without a will and the state determines who will raise your children.  If your children are grown, a will keeps your estate out of probate and retains the inheritance for your inheritors, not the court fees probate generators.  A will can also curb fights over who gets what; your wishes are clearly written in the will.

Even though we all know wills are important, “a staggering 65% of adults do not have wills.”   When asked why, “a large number of people said that a will is too expensive and too complicated” (Mellert Law).

You may likely feel this way, too.  However, there are plenty of ways you can create your will without spending a lot of money.

Consider the following ways to create a low-cost will:

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How to Negotiate to Lower Your Credit Card Interest Rates

According to CreditCards.com, the average credit card debt (per household with credit card debt) is $15,956, and the average APR paid on that debt is 12.78%.

Annually, the average household is paying over $2,000 a year just in credit card interest.

If you do not want to or are unable to transfer your balance to a credit card with a lower interest rate, your next best line of defense is to negotiate with the credit card company to get a lower interest rate.

Before you call to negotiate, remember that you will need to be calm and polite the entire time. 

Do not let your emotions enter into the negotiations.  Also, keep in mind that credit card negotiations are effective about 50% of the time.  Don’t use this knowledge as an excuse to give up, but also recognize that you may not always be able to get the credit card company to budge.

Follow these tips when calling to negotiate to lower credit card  interest rates:

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Making the Most of Your Wedding Registry

If you are engaged, one important task on your wedding to do list is to create a wedding registry.

You may spend a few hours with your fiance choosing a store to register for your wedding gifts and actually picking the items to appear on the list.  Some people find the process so overwhelming that they continue registering over the course of a few days.

If you are recently engaged and planning to create a wedding registry, here are a few tips to make the most of your registry:

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Will Divorce Make You Happier? The Emotional and Financial Implications of Divorce

It happens to the best of couples. 

You start out deeply in love, and then, with the stresses of life, child rearing and career growth, you don’t spend enough time together.

You grow apart.

You start to get upset with one another and find flaws.  (Ironically, often the traits that most endeared your spouse to you in the beginning are now the very traits you find most irritating).

It is at this point that many couples consider getting divorced.

According to Dr. Heller, a licensed psychologist in Massachusetts, “about 10% of all marriages end in divorce during the first five years and another 10% by the tenth year.”

Divorce can seem like the easy way out.
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Grow Your Own Garden This Summer to Save at the Grocery Store

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If you are like most Americans, you have probably felt the pain at the grocery store cash register when buying your family’s groceries.

While the increase in the price of gas most often makes the nightly news, the increase in the price of groceries hits consumers’ wallets even more so, especially if you have a family.

If you don’t want to resort to being an extreme couponer buying processed foods for pennies on the dollar, there is another way to save—grow your own garden.

Can’t Grow a Garden Because You Live in the City?  Think Again

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The History of College Student Loans

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Every other week, it seems, we hear dire warnings about how much debt our college students are burdened with when they graduate.

Indeed, more than ½ of college students take out student loans, and the average student loan tab for a graduating senior is just over $25,000.  Coupled with a rough economy and a general lack of financial knowledge, recent college graduates are struggling financially like never before.

Yet, it hasn’t always been this way.

Many of us just grew up knowing that student loans have, and will be, available, but that hasn’t always been the case.

A Brief History of College Student Loans

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Have a Student Going Off to College? Teach Your Child about Student Loan Debt

If you have a soon to be graduating high school senior, she has hopefully been accepted to several schools and is in the processes of deciding which to accept.

Your high school students should be blissfully debt free right now, but as soon as she decides what school to attend, that may all change.

Far too many students decide what college to attend because they like the campus or the atmosphere or because they want to move far from home.

Ideally, before she even begins to apply to colleges, you, as the parent, should sit down with her and discuss finances.  This conversation should occur no later than before your child makes a decision as to what college to attend.

Most parents would like to pay for their child’s entire college education, but that is often not possible due to the current economy and rising tuition costs.

Chances are, if your child attends an expensive university or private college, she will have to take out student loans, sometimes tens of thousands of dollars worth of student loans.  The cold reality is that she may be paying these loans for the next 10 to 20 years, and she may have to delay important life events such as getting married, having a child and buying a home all because of her student loan debt level.

Ignorance Is Not Bliss

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