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Should Your Child Wear A ‘LEAF’ To School

After your child gets their driver’s license, one of the next financial considerations is whether or not you should purchase another car for your household.   Some parents will buy their children a brand new Hummer while others will find clunkers that weren’t intended to be two-tone cars even though the hood is black the rest of the car is grey.   With advancements in technology, is it possible that getting a brand new electric car is a good idea? If you’ve read Your Smart Money Moves over the past five years, you know that I’m not a humongous fan of leasing cars.   However, in the case of electric cars, it can be quite advantageous, at least within the state of Georgia.   Consider what a lease would look like on the electric vehicle Nissan Leaf. An income tax credit is available for up to 20% of the cost to purchase or lease an electric vehicle, or $5,000, whichever is less. The credit ...

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Five Celebrities That Know How To Save Money

Most of the media generated stories about celebrities consist of shock and awe showing situations resembling the Titanic sinking into the ocean.   When it comes to personal finances, we read about those who didn’t pay their income taxes, stars that spent themselves into bankruptcy, and estate plans that went decidedly south after their death.    However, there are celebrities who understand a thing or two about money and here are five famous people who know how to improve their bottom line. Teri Hatcher Understands Used Cars– Teri Hatcher became famous through the Superman shows she did with Dean Cain and then hit a home run with the Desperate Housewives television show.   She’s reported to have a net worth of over $50 million dollars.  “I don’t spend my money on sports cars or new million-dollar houses. I drive my cars for 10 years until they have 100,000 miles on them.” (source www.msn.com)    Used car buying is a smart money move that can ...

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Do I Still Need A Landline?

My wife and I were recently on vacation and had a once in a lifetime opportunity to ride the Orient Express.   It was truly magical to be jettisoned back into the early part of the 19th century sitting on plush armchairs, dining with fine china, and silverware that was actually made of silver.   As we journeyed from Cheltenham to Southampton in England, we got into a lively conversation with couple sitting across from us in the train car.    This couple was retired and after a discussion around mobile phone technology, they gave us some food for thought around why to sill have a landline. I want to get to know my daughter-in-law–  One of the most interesting comments they made during the trip is that home phones allow both partners from the family to pick up the phone.   In today’s world, if you have a child that is married you might generally call only their mobile phone.   This doesn’t give ...

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Put Down the Registry Gun

By: Mary Kennon Lewis With a gleam in his eye and the registry gun in hand, my husband was a dad-to-be on a mission. We were completing our baby registry and being assisted by a sales associate who was at the top of his game. This associate walked us through each aisle of the store, expertly showing off items that were a “must have” for any new baby or parent.  As we walked and listened, I noticed my husband pointing and clicking like a madman at anything and everything that was recommended (and a few more items, I later saw). Two hours later, we walked out of the store confident that we had left no stone (or bottle, in this case) unturned. We had been schooled on everything from how loud each breast pump sounded when running, to each accessory available for the stroller we had chosen. What we weren’t schooled on, but found out after our little bundle of ...

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You Are A Sole Proprietor: How About A Solo 401(k)

I am seeing more and more people quit the corporate America lifestyle and venture into becoming their own business owner.  This shape of a business owner can be a freelancer, consultant, or someone who actually starts up a ‘brick and mortar’ operation.    Many of these folks will ask questions about whether they should incorporate their business, which I have discussed in other articles.    Once they become profitable, they often ask which kind of retirement plan would suit them the best.   For someone who is a sole business owner, the Solo 401(k) has been around for about a decade and provides a great alternative to helping maximize your retirement contributions.   Here’s a little history on the Solo 401(k) and how it can be a smart money move for your business. The Solo 401k came about in 2002 after Congress passed Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001 (EGTRRA). EGTRRA added some small paragraphs to the tax code that put ...

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AMEX Points: Try The Clearance Rack

People often ask me what is the best type of credit card to get when it comes to frequent flier or cash back awards. I’ll cover some of my favorite reward cards in other post, but in today’s blog I thought I would share how to make the most of your AMEX card.   Sad to say, but most people who carry the GOLD or PLATINUM card don’t ever look at or use most of the benefits of card.   What most consumers are aware of is that with each purchase they rack up 1 point for every dollar they spend.   So how do you make the most of your rewards?  Check the CLEARANCE rack.  Here’s an example of three items you can get in the clearance section on AMEX membership rewards today. (source: AmericanExpress.com) When you click the membership rewards link in your AMEX account, you’ll notice on the far right hand side a link called ‘specials’.  If you click this ...

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Public School Is Not A Free Ride

By: Genna Jenkin The Your Smart Money Moves Mom Request a FREE consultation: www.oxygenfinancial.net Barely a week into our back to school routine and I’m already aware of some very disconcerting patterns forming.  The kids’ interest in helping get their lunches together is waning, bedtimes are not being adhered to and I’ve badgered them all about their homework more times than I’d like to count.  However, the most troublesome of all, is that every evening I find myself with my checkbook “paying” for my children’s public school education. Now don’t get me wrong, I understand that public education in this country can tend to get the proverbial short end of the stick, so I am well aware for the need to ask parents for some financial assistance.  It’s the changes I’ve seen since I enrolled my oldest in kindergarten (12 years ago) that concern me.  I’m sure that everyone with school age children can identify with the lengthy and detailed ...

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