Personal Money Management

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What Are the Different Markings Used to Identify Real Gold?

Federal law requires that gold jewelry sold in the United States must be marked with the gold content. The U.S. jewelry industry has standardized the marking of real gold items through Voluntary Product Standard PS 68-76. The jewelry manufacturer bears the responsibility and ...

Blind Trust Vs. Revocable Trust

You set up a trust to manage money, and for the legal advantages that trusts offer. Many trusts handle estates to be passed on to beneficiaries; such a trust helps the heirs avoid probate court when the grantor dies. The trustee, a person or organization that you designate, has ...

How Much in Taxes Do You Pay on an IRA in Retirement?

An IRA is a tax-advantaged account that allows you to save money for retirement. Whether you have a traditional or Roth IRA, you don't pay tax on the earnings while the account is growing. The earnings are reinvested and compounded for more growth. When you retire and begin to ...

Does It Make Sense to Trade a Car in Every Year for a New Car?

There's nothing like that new car smell, nor the peace of mind that comes with knowing you're driving a car with low mileage and years left on the warranty. No wonder, then, that it's tempting to want to trade a car every year for a new one. Before you make the decision to do a ...

How to Convert Simple Returns on Equity to Annualized Returns

The simple return on equity refers to the total income divided by the total shareholders' equity over any specified period of time. For example, you use the simple return on equity to find the overall growth rate during the time you held a stock, but because of compounding, you ...

How to Borrow Against Your Savings

Passbook savings loans, also known as secured personal loans and savings secured loans, present a way for you to borrow money from your own savings account. The chief advantage of this type of loan is that interest rates are far lower than credit card or unsecured loan rates, ...

How Much Money Can You Leave in a Trust Before You Have to Pay Inheritance Taxes?

Setting up a trust is a valuable tool when planning for your family's financial future. A trust can hold a wide variety of assets, and as the grantor you can name the beneficiaries who inherit these assets after your death. A trust avoids probate court, making life simpler for ...

Life Insurance Loan Facts

A life insurance policy has value, and can be used as collateral to secure a loan — but securing a loan with a life insurance policy can leave you vulnerable to unexpected financial and tax consequences. Carefully weigh the pros and cons of this type of loan before signing ...

Can You Claim Dental Crowns for a Tax Deduction?

Dental work can be a major cost as a result of hard-to-obtain materials, plus techniques and innovations requiring high skill levels for practitioners. Dental equipment is also sophisticated and expensive, and such costs are typically passed along to patients. Dental insurance ...

How Much Debt Can You Have to File Chapter 7?

Personal bankruptcy protection is available to individuals who are struggling with unpaid credit card bills, medical bills, foreclosure or other types of debt. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is designed specifically for debtors whose income makes it difficult or impossible to meet their ...

How to Transfer Credit Card Balances at a Fixed Rate

Credit cards companies generally charge much higher interest rates than you pay for an auto loan or mortgage. If you don't pay off the credit card balance each month, you end up paying a lot in interest, which makes it easy for credit card debt to get out of control. Some credit ...

What Are the Things You Need to Check Before Signing as a Loan Guarantor?

If you're responsible with your personal finances and you have a high credit score, someone may ask you to be a loan guarantor. Signing as a loan guarantor can help another person, such as a child, sibling or other relative, acquire a loan. As a loan guarantor, you agree to ...

Is It Better to Make Payments or Pay Cash for a Car?

The decision whether to finance or pay cash for a vehicle might be well-thought-out or impulsive. Several factors could influence whether paying cash outright or taking out a loan makes sound financial sense. In addition to the long-term costs of financing and the planned use of ...

Examples of Short Term Debt

While excess debt is detrimental to the financial health of companies and individuals alike, access to credit is usually considered a good thing. Access to credit lets individuals buy things like a car or home, and pay for a child's college education. Companies and governments ...

What Is the Difference Between a Signature Loan and a Short-term Loan?

It's normal to obtain a loan to buy a house or vehicle. When you take out a loan for a house or car, the lender lets you repay the loan over several years. But what if you need a quick, short loan? In this case, you can apply for either a signature loan or a short-term loan. ...

Can Property in a Revocable Trust Be Refinanced?

Anyone seeking to protect assets from probate court may set up a revocable trust. The grantor of the trust names a trustee to manage the trust's investments and property. On the death of the grantor, the assets pass directly to the beneficiaries named in the trust document. Many ...

What Are Qualified Expenses for a 529 Plan?

A 529 plan is a tax-advantaged investment vehicle that offers parents a way to save money for their child's future education expenses. Each state administers its own 529 plan but parents must adhere to federal tax guidelines when taking distributions. The IRS has specific rules ...

Can I Analyze My Own Investments or Should I Pay an Adviser?

The old adage labeling the person "a fool" for heading into a legal battle without professional assistance occasionally also applies to the world of investments. Self-education provides the bedrock for an investor to analyze management decisions, but outside advisers ...

Can I Roll a Thrift Savings Into a 529?

The Thrift Savings Plan, the defined-contribution pension plan available to federal employees and the military, is a popular tax-deferred retirement savings vehicle. It is not designed to be a college savings vehicle, however, and is incompatible with the Section 529 college ...

Cost of an RV Vs. a Motel

The various costs associated with traveling mean that even a vacation can be a time to pinch pennies. Owning an RV is one way to travel, while renting a motel room offers a different experience. While neither option is guaranteed to be less expensive than the other, the distance ...

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