Foreclosures hit a record high in August 2011. Although they have since dropped about 13 percent from that peak, the housing saga continues to unfold as high unemployment rates and economic stagnation continues to leave homeowners broke — and sometimes unable to make their mortgage payments. According to the most recent statistics by Realty Trac, many states even saw year-over-year increases in foreclosures in August 2012.
If you’re struggling to make your mortgage payments, there are several options to help keep you in your home, or at least limit the financial damage of giving it up. Find out what to do if you can’t keep up on your home loan payments anymore in my new post on GoBankingRates.com: http://bit.ly/Q6r2UE
When the Bush tax cuts — formally known as the Economic Growth and Tax Reconciliation Act of 2001 and the Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003 — were implemented, Americans faced lower tax rates than any time since the 1970s. Now, they are set to expire at the end of 2012 — and it has everyone wondering what it will all mean for their finances.
Unfortunately, with the all the political debate (Did the cuts help the economy or hurt it? Will President Obama extend parts of them for another year? Who will be affected?) it’s hard to tell what the tax landscape will really look like in 2013. The possibility of change has one group especially worried: Retirees and those approaching retirement.
After the stock market crash and ongoing recession, this group has taken a major blow, and many of them can’t afford anything else that might put a drain on their savings. Check out some of the potential consequences for this group if the Bush tax cuts are repealed in my new post on GoBankingRates.com: http://bit.ly/S0FmIN
Housing prices in the U.S. hit a peak in 2006, but since the market crashed in 2007, things have been mostly downhill from there. Until now. In recent months, many real estate experts have expressed confidence that the U.S. housing market has finally hit bottom and is beginning to turn around.
That rebound comes mostly as a result of the actions of one major group: Investors. But while most people feel that a positive shift in real estate prices is long overdue, some critics feel that investors cause some problems of their own — and may even be preventing the housing market from recovering. Learn about the issue from both sides in my new article on GoBankingRates.com: http://bit.ly/QwiGzA
Paying off debt isn’t easy. Maybe that’s why people so often pull out all the stops when it comes to making excuses about why they just can’t get the job done. After all, it’s much easier to admit defeat than to honestly assess your spending and cut out some of the things you enjoy.
Maybe you think you aren’t spending a penny beyond the bare essentials, but consumer spending statistics from the Bureau of Labor Statistics say otherwise. Check out six non-essential things consumers shell out for — and why if you’re in debt, you need to cut them loose – in my new post on GoBankingRates.com: http://bit.ly/Np9E6t
So you just graduated from college and you’ve landed your first job. Congratulations! What’s up next? You may be wondering, “Should I buy a new car?”
For many people a car may be essential for getting around in the city, but a new car isn’t. Sorry to burst your dreams, but buying new just doesn’t stand up to financial scrutiny. In fact, the benefits of buying a used car far outweigh buying new.
Check out a few reasons to avoid buying a new car in lieu of a used car purchase in my new article on GoBankingRates.com: http://bit.ly/PMmH7x
At some point, we all spend a little more than we’d planned, save less than we wanted and have made a horrible financial decision or two. That’s just life. But financial mistakes — like most mistakes in life — can generally be avoided with forethought, planning and self-discipline. And of course, it’s best to know what kinds of behavior to avoid at all costs. Here are some of the most common financial mistakes people make. If you can learn to steer clear of these, you’ll be well on your way to a bright financial future. Check them out in my new article on GoBankingRates.com: http://bit.ly/O6Wi18
Home prices have declined by more than 33 percent from their July 2006 peak, foreclosures may be set to rise again and the economy just isn’t providing a lot of hope that the “good old days” of high home prices will be back anytime soon, leaving many potential home buyers on the sidelines hoping for better times ahead.
Except for 14-year-old Willow Tufano. In March, the young teen made news by buying a house with cash in Port Charlotte, Florida, for $12,000. And the bold move wasn’t just youthful naivete — this business-savvy girl knows what she’s doing (even if the laws in Florida meant she had to buy the home through her mother). Read more about how she did it – and what you can learn from it – in my new article on GoBankingRates.com: http://bit.ly/ODc4yB
Ladies, have you thought about your retirement plan? And no, a well-heeled man doesn’t count. If you haven’t put any effort into saving for retirement, it’s something worth considering — and soon.
That’s because while few Americans are superstar retirement savers, women in particular tend to fall short on retirement savings compared to men, saving less than 70 percent of what men typically save, according to a recent report by the ING Retirement Research Institute.
So why is saving such an uphill battle for women? Check out some of the key factors that are holding them back in my post on GoBankingRates.com: http://bit.ly/NNt0UA
If you’re looking forward to a day when you won’t have to get up and go to work in the morning, you might have something unexpected to look forward to as well: poor health. It turns out that retirement can be bad for your happiness — and even your physical well-being. According to statistics released in 2006 by the National Bureau of Economic Research, retirees were more likely to experience depression and health problems than those who were still working.
Can you really spend 30 years playing golf? Many baby boomers are doing just the opposite, and opting to stay in the workforce longer. As it turns out, it may also allow them to live longer, healthier lives – and provide a much needed boost to their savings and social security benefits. Check out the benefits of working longer, and how you can do it successfully, in my new post on GoBankingRates.com: http://bit.ly/JywBb8
Flickr/Monkey Mash Button
If you’ve seen the most recent cover of Time magazine, you might be surprised to learn that the story is less about the shock value of a woman breast-feeding a three-year-old child, and more about the method of parenting that inspired it — attachment parenting. The amount of time attachment parents must devote to their children is part of what makes this parenting method so controversial, but it may also be what makes it a great way to save money as a parent. Read more about it in my new post on GoBankingRates.com: http://bit.ly/McY1D3