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How Much Will It Cost When Your Son Or Daughter Starts Driving?

It’s hard to imagine for most parents that their son or daughter will be ready to get their driver’s license someday.    In fact, I think this ritual is a little bit like the birthing process.   Nature in part prepares you for very little sleep when the baby is born by making it very difficult to sleep in that last trimester.    As much as your stomach will go through the spin cycle the first time your son or daughter leaves the driveway all by themselves, there is also an overwhelming sense of relief for you to remove the chauffeur cap that you have rightly earned the years preceding your son or daughter getting their driver’s license.    While most families prepare for the magical day when their children get their rite of passage to begin driving, they often don’t consider the extra costs that may hit their family budget.   How much will it cost when my child starts driving? Learners Permit- This ...

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VIDEO | Top 5 New Years Resolutions

Published on: January 21, 2013 @ 11:00 It’s hard to imagine that another year has passed by so quickly.   In the wake of the fiscal cliff coming down the stretch, it seems ironic that we would be discussing financial New Year’s resolutions.  http://bit.ly/UMnENB  You would think that our politicians and policymakers alike could learn a little bit from my top five this year.    No matter how all of the information gets relayed to us about this fiscal cliff, you can be 100% certain of simple mathematics.   You cannot make progress when your expenses exceed your revenue and more often than not leverage will get you in deep financial trouble.    If you can learn that basic financial principle from what you have witnessed with our country’s finances, you’ll be much better off when you plan your own in 2013.   So here are five financial New Year’s resolutions that can make a dent in your bottom line. ...

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VIDEO | When Should You Replace Your Old Car

Published on Sep 4, 2012 When it comes to making smart money moves, our family has never been a big fan of buying a new car. Read FULL ARTICLE Here – http://bit.ly/Te3HAf – In fact, the last new car that we bought was back in 1993 when we really did the math on how much smarter it is to buy a used car that is somewhere between two to four years old versus getting a new one. While getting a new car should be a well thought out planned purchase, it often falls into the camp of a spur of the moment purchase depending on when you get in the mood. In a sound financial plan, you should begin to save for the (new) used car purchase the moment that you pay off the old purchase. If you are like me and pay for your cars in cash, you should begin to immediately build a side fund so you can pay for that ...

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Life Insurance: Why Do You Think 1 Million Dollars Is A Lot Of Money?

I’m excited to take part in the life insurance movement with Good Financial Cents.  Having been a practitioner involved with life insurance over the past 21 years, I have unfortunately had to deliver my fair share of insurance checks.   When I met people who have lost a loved one and now have to build them a financial plan, never once did I hear them say, “Boy, I’m so angry my life insurance agent sold me too much insurance!”    Rather, I hear horror stories from widows who cannot understand why their husband didn’t take out more life insurance.   Or, they assured their spouse that they would be ‘well taken care of’ if anything happened to them.   This is the story for many families across America. In the last six months, I’ve seen both friends and family who are in the 40 to 45 year old range dealing with major medical issues.   I’m 42 and when people told me about 10 years ...

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Personal Finance 101: Generation X – You Just Turned 40: Last Time To Get Life Insurance?

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. In the last six months, I’ve seen both friends and family who are in the 40 to 45 year old range dealing with major medical issues.   I’m 42 and when people told me about 10 years ago the aches in my joints would be just a little bit worse . . . well I hate to admit but they were correct.    Recently, I had three different people I know who drove themselves down to the emergency room thinking that they might be having a stroke or heart attack.    I know three different people who were diagnosed with some ...

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When Are Companies Going To Learn To Just Shoot Straight?

I’m excited that 2012 is here and consumers are starting to realize that they can win the money battle when they know something is just flat out wrong with a new offering from their provider.    Large companies need to begin to realize that the consumer today is evolving.   They don’t mind paying a fair price for a good product or service.  Sometimes they will even pay a premium if the value is created for them.   However, what they won’t put up with anymore are these made up fees that are broadly titled like they are doing something good for the consumer when in reality it is just another tack on fee to add to the bottom line.    All companies need to understand that the consumer can handle that prices will go up.   They just want to know what it is without any gimmicks or tricks in a straight forward way.   Instead, we keep getting these insulting fees added to bills ...

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5 Tips To A Successful Garage Sale

If you need some extra cash, one thing to consider during the holiday season (don’t wait til’ it warms up) is to have a year end garage sale.   Garage sales can be really profitable or just end up being a day outside getting rid of a few pieces of junk you don’t want in the house anymore.   If you are seriously thinking about making your garage sale a money making day, here are five of my tips to a successful garage sale. Place Like Items With Like Pricing On The Same Table –  It is really important to use a Sharpie and clearly mark the pricing on each of your tables.  You don’t want people to come up to your house and have to ask you every five minutes what items cost at each table.   If you have items you are going to mark for $1 or $5, it will be much easier to put them together at one table ...

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Personal Finance 101 – This Week: Dying Without A Will

What happens if I die without a Will? First, a little context is required. If you own any property when you die, then your surviving spouse or family will need to go through a legal process called “Probate” in order to legally wind up your affairs, pay off your debts, and transfer your remaining property to surviving family. The Probate process applies whether you have a Will or not. The only way around the Probate process is to own all of your assets through a Living Trust, but that’s a whole different story… If you have a valid Will, then the Probate process plays out according to the specific wishes in your Will, which should include details about who is responsible for administering your estate (the “Executor”), who is guardian for your minor children, who gets your assets, and whether those assets are left outright to people or in creditor protected trusts, just to name a few considerations. After that ...

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IF YOU CAN’T EXPLAIN IT ON ONE PAGE . . . DON’T DO IT!!

Over this past week, I've been watching many different proposals around health insurance in the United States. In one magazine, Investors Business Daily, they had a flow chart of what the health insurance plan would look like. It looked more like an electrical engineering chart of the Empire State Building than it did a health insurance plan. ...

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