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Seven Items Going Up In Cost In 2015!

Everybody says that inflation is staying low, but besides what we see at the gas station you wouldn’t know it when you go to the checkout counter.   While it only costs about half to fill up our tanks, some categories of spending continue to defy gravity going into 2015.   Here are seven items that are going to climb in 2015 and your smart money moves alternatives to keep your dollar stretching throughout the year. BOURBON Bourbon sales continue to skyrocket as the demand for higher end bourbon brands continue to be sought out across the country.  These bourbons may need a 10 to 20 year aging process, so production is extremely limited at this time.  However, just like wine, most of the average bourbon drinkers couldn’t really tell the difference between a higher end and lower end bourbon, and some distilleries make multiple brands in the same place just with a different blend.  Try something like Old Crow or Kentucky ...

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Save Big, Save Little for College

For many of us, one of the biggest expenses that we’ll have is paying for our own or our child’s college education. Personally, I knew that I wasn’t going to have a “Free Ride” during college. Although I played Division III college basketball, I still maintained 4 jobs in college and used the tutoring services so that I could qualify for as many academic scholarships as possible and to pay down some of my student loans before I graduated.  According to the College Board, statistics show that over the past 30 years the average annual increase for college tuition has ranged from 3-5% above and beyond inflation(Consumer Price Index). I recently had the chance to interview Mandy Ginsberg, CEO of Tutor.com/former CEO of Match.com, about the different ways to help students save and pay for college. Below are a few tips that Ginsberg shares with our readers. “Save Big” Ginsberg says. Many people transition from paying for day care to ...

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What’s Next . . . Step On The Scale Please!

Making smart money moves are important within all facets of our lives. Although we often think about money when it comes to bills, purchases, and investments, our overall health and wellness can be one of the largest costs included in our overall budgets. Relative to this, our diets and the way we eat can have a major impact on our personal finances day in and day out. If we end up having diabetes, high blood pressure, or extremely high cholesterol, these health issues can cost us thousands of dollars each and every single year to treat. Several years ago, the USDA (www.usda.org) released a report that stated medical costs that come as a result of obesity related problems are about $10,000 higher than they are for those with a healthy normal weight. What would it mean to put $10,000 back in your cash reserve, your children’s 529 college education fund, or your retirement savings? Back in the early 1990’s, the ...

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VIDEO | Teach Kids Financial Responsibility

Published on Oct 22, 2012 For many parents in their 40’s, a loud and disturbing wake-up call is beginning to happen. ( Full Article – http://bit.ly/QGha19 ) This wake-up call is the dilemma between figuring out how to catch up on the savings to be able to achieve a comfortable retirement and also ensuring you put enough money away to pay for your children’s college education costs. This quandary has put an extreme amount of pressure on mid 40’s parents on how they will come up with a solution on making both of these goals a reality. Since many parent’s will not be able to fully fund a children’s college education, it can be a great time as they go through middle school into the early years of high school to teach them financial responsibility as they will likely have to service their own college debt down the road.   ...

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Do You Eat Out Too Much?

If you’ve noticed that your disposable income may be sneaking out the back door of your family finances, one of the causes could be between the lunches and dinners that you eat out every week.    With our family of five, I’ve noticed that even eating out at a basic Darden casual fare restaurant can run $60 to $80 with basic fountain drinks.    Add in a couple of appetizers and you could be reaching $100 for a family of five.    In addition, your lunches at the local deli in the basement of your building or a casual fast fare type restaurant can set you back $10 a day pretty quickly during the work week.    Total up all of your lunches and dinners, and you could be losing those valuable disposable dollars that can help you build a college education or retirement fund.    Dining out and entertainment expenses have become a blurred line in the family budgeting process because of so many ...

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College Education Or Entrepreneurship?

Generation X parents continue to face the challenging uphill climb of saving for their children’s college education.   For a Generation X couple that has their first child here in 2012, the cost for a private college at $50,000 a year will cost over $518,000 of total dollars at a 5% inflation rate.   As crazy as that sounds, a parent would have to save $1,085 per month in today’s dollars to be able to reach that goal.    For most parent’s the thought of saving this much money to pay for the cost of education for just ONE child can be downright daunting.  Many of us believe that the cost of college education cannot defy gravity forever, but to this point there has been no stopping the rising costs for a four year degree. During the formidable teenage years, many parents help guide their children toward getting excellent grades in school, playing some sort of athletic sports, and filling their resume with ...

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Are Your Student Loans Making You Lose Sleep At Night?

While taking graduate school classes my own personal student loan debt piled up like a house of cards, and I can assure you this debt made me feel like one gust of wind was going to blow my stack of cards down to the ground.  Every month a  special little bill from your creditor comes in the mail, and every month it seems like a nightmare trying to figure just how you will pay down those debts on time so that your credit isn’t affected poorly. There is no simple answer to such a question in today’s economy. Many new undergraduates are having extreme difficulty finding work, let alone in the field they majored in at college. So the question remains, how do you service this seemingly never ending hunk of debt? Hopefully, as a graduate you have found some sort of job. If fact, at this point you might take any job which may help you to make those ...

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Personal Finance 101: Generation X Series – A kid’s birthday party for $500 (or more)?

Generation X is classically defined at people born between the years 1965 and 1979.    Pretty much those of you in your early 30’s to the mid 40’s.  However, having given personal financial advice to thousands of people, I can tell you that many of you who were born 1960 to 1964 fit within the Generation X type of financial and personal attitude.   Since I am 42 and have had a good deal of financial success, I’ve noticed some big mistakes that I see my generation making with their money and how they think about money.    This week I wanted to discuss the mistake parents make that have two, three, or four children, and the crazy amount of money they spend on birthday parties. As a Gen X parent with a 14, 12, and 10 year old, I got caught up making some of the mistakes other Gen X parents make.   As you compete with your neighbors and friends for which ...

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