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home : life : personal finance
August 18, 2018

Three tax savings strategies for a secure retirement to try right now
(BPT) - Individuals who rushed to prepay property taxes after the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act may have saved some money in 2018 — but that’s pennies compared to the long-term tax savings taxpayers should take advantage of before the TCJA’s individual tax provisions are ex... More >>

5 back-to-school tips for parents with young athletes
(BPT) - The transition between summer and going back to school can be tough, especially for families with student athletes who are participating in fall sports. Whether your athletes are in high school or grade school, it’s difficult to balance schoolwork, practice, games, proper nutrition an... More >>

Why public transit is a key economic issue for growing cities
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Knowledge is power: Tips to help children better understand our connected world
(BPT) - Technology has rapidly changed the way we live over the past 30 years. Where people once turned strictly to their televisions to watch their favorite shows or play video games, people can now access their favorite entertainment, anytime and anywhere — thanks to smart devices and a WiF... More >>

Take control of your personal information
(BPT) - Understanding and managing your personal information is essential to achieving your life goals such as owning a home, financing an education, getting your next job or simply having the convenience of credit cards for everyday purchases.Banks, landlords, employers and many others need to aut... More >>

New technology promotes healthy aging in place
(BPT) - As millions of baby boomers reach their golden years, they’re changing the world yet again, this time by driving a booming market in senior-friendly aging-in-place technologies. From simple wearable devices to high-tech monitoring systems, the list of gadgets designed to help aging bo... More >>

Cancer care costs on the rise: How to get help
(BPT) - Cancer patients face skyrocketing costs for their treatment, which adds to the stress of a cancer diagnosis and living with a disease. As an unapologetically patients-first organization, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) is finding ways to lessen the burden. “When cancer patie... More >>

4 ways to use technology to simplify your home buying process
(BPT) - While spring is typically the busiest period in real estate, particularly for families looking to get in to a new home before the school year starts, the fall months have become increasingly active for those who have more flexibility or are looking for a good deal.With increased competition... More >>

4 habits for fit finances
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Tire confidential: Tips on picking the right one for you
(BPT) - To most people, a tire is a tire is a tire. To the naked eye, that’s absolutely correct: They are black and round. However, upon further inspection, tires are one of the most technologically advanced parts of a car, influencing the braking, steering, comfort, handling, safety and fuel... More >>

Paying for college: It pays to have a cosigner when applying for student loans
(BPT) - Adding a cosigner to your student loan application can be a smart financial move, according to a new analysis from online student loan marketplace Credible.com. The research found that borrowers who added a cosigner to their private student loan applications were more than five times more l... More >>

4 ways to prep your home for winter
(BPT) - When you start feeling those first hints of winter, the instinct to get ready kicks in. You may dig out your car’s snow brush, blanket, shovel and winter survival kit and place them in the trunk of your car. The winter coats and boots come out of storage, and you may pick up some extr... More >>

Millennial women and money: 5 things that might surprise you
(BPT) - Now more than ever, women are speaking out on a variety of issues, from social inequality to inadequate representation to harassment, but there is one thing that’s still taboo: money.In order to get a better understanding of how millennial and Gen X women think, feel and act when it c... More >>

4 tips to mitigate home improvement costs
(BPT) - Construction material costs in 2018 are up about 10 percent compared to last year, according to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data, and some raw materials, like crude petroleum, are up nearly 50 percent. Labor is also getting more expensive as construction workers are in high demand due t... More >>

5 hazards on the road to the Medicare Part D plan that's best for you
(BPT) - Some experts estimate that as many as 80 percent of Medicare beneficiaries choose to stay in a Medicare prescription drug plan (“Part D plan”) that doesn’t match their needs. Studies show that these individuals could benefit from cost savings and better coverage by taking ... More >>

Your home haven: 5 common mistakes when planning a DIY deck
(BPT) - Across America, decks have become a popular place for people to entertain guests or just relax. The greatest appeal? The elevated outdoor living areas offer a convenient option for enjoying the great outdoors in a comfortable, room-like space that’s somewhat removed from the elements.... More >>

6 ways nonprofit public broadcasting strengthens local communities
(BPT) - In a time when consumers have more information and entertainment options than ever before, one resource continues to deliver high-quality, well-researched news and engaging entertainment programming that bridges the divide between national events and local activities.Whether you are braving... More >>

Before you renovate, have you considered this?
(BPT) - Home improvement projects are popular this time of year and you’ve certainly tackled your share of DIY to-dos in the past. But not this year. This year you realize it’s time to go big, to go bold, to set aside those traditional home improvement projects for another year and do s... More >>

3 elements to create a dream bathroom sanctuary
(BPT) - Bathrooms reign supreme, overtaking kitchens as the most popular remodeling project, according to a new survey by the National Association of Home Builders. In the study, remodelers reported on the most common projects in 2017 and 81 percent performed bathroom remodeling.Whether you're hiri... More >>

What should you be doing to prepare for retirement? Top tips and tactics from financial advisors
(BPT) - You're 10 years or less away from retirement. You can clearly see the next phase of your life down the road and it's coming up fast. Are you ready for it? Do you have a comprehensive plan in place so you don't outlive your savings?If you're not as prepared for retirement as you should be, y... More >>

Remodeling to age in place? Make changes where it matters most
(BPT) - American household demographics constantly change. With kids grown and moved out, many adults are considering remodeling to meet their future needs. This has inspired the idea of aging in place, meaning the desire to have a high quality of life in your home as you get older. In the United S... More >>

5 tips for financing your next home improvement project
(BPT) - Whether it’s transforming a fixer-upper into your dream home or just giving a makeover to your kitchen or bathroom, home improvement projects are on the minds of many new homeowners across the country.While many things about renovating your home are flexible, your budget might not be.... More >>

You're covered: 4 unusual homeowners claims you didn't think would ever happen
(BPT) - Homeowners insurance is a practical investment to help protect you, your family and your property in the event of unforeseen and unexpected losses. Traditionally, it’s associated with fire damage, burst or leaking pipes, or stolen property, but occasionally it covers unusual events th... More >>

Not enough hours in the day? Try these handy shortcuts for time-consuming errands
(BPT) - Between work, kids, pets and more, everyday life can feel like … a lot. Add summer schedules to the mix, and things can get downright chaotic.Thankfully, retailers are stepping up with convenient new delivery and pickup options. To help you save time this summer, we’ve listed h... More >>

Boomer bonanza: 5 ways to stay in style on a fixed income
(BPT) - As American baby boomers begin to exit their careers and opt for more leisurely lifestyles, some 10,000 are expected to retire every day through 2029.While many are scaling back their incomes in retirement, however, most have no intention of becoming out-of-touch with modern trends and inno... More >>

Don't suffer high energy bills any longer
(BPT) - Do you cringe each month when your utility bills arrive?The annual energy cost for a typical single family home in the U.S. is more than $2,000, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. If you can think of a thousand things you’d rather spend your hard-earned money on than electric... More >>

Protecting your peace of mind, and your bottom line
(BPT) - How big is your retirement nest egg? Is there a chance you could outlive it? Even if you're socking money into your 401(k) every paycheck like clockwork, that's a question worth pondering. Americans are living longer, more active, younger lives. They say that 60 is the new 40, and if you lo... More >>

Simple ways to earn extra money without owning a car
(BPT) - Whether you’re new to a city and are getting on your feet, or you don’t want the commitment of a longtime lease or loan, there are countless ways to put some dough in your pocket without the need to purchase a car. Working with a flexible schedule doesn't necessarily mean that y... More >>

Top tips to help first-timers navigate the fast-paced housing market
(BPT) - Across the U.S., the housing market is picking up pace moving into the peak of the summer homebuying season.In city after city, home prices are on the rise, up 2.3 percent on average between April 2017 and 2018, according to the RE/MAX April 2018 National Housing Report. And there are fewer... More >>

Five-minute life hack: Tips to boost your career
(BPT) - The rapid pace of change in jobs means the era of one-and-done learning is over. It no longer matters what you learned in the past — to stay relevant you need to upskill. So if you want to improve your marketability and get ahead in your career, it’s time to think about the valu... More >>

3 easy ways to get on deck with the right decking
(BPT) - If The Old Farmer’s Almanac prediction holds true, this summer will be a hot one. The weather forecast anticipates temperatures for the season to be “hotter than normal” across most of the U.S. If you’re ready to kick up your feet and soak in these rays, now is the p... More >>

5 important tips to recruit and retain millennials
(BPT) - As millennials continue to expand their share of the workforce in this country, they’re using their influence to change the workplace to their advantage.The generation of workers ages 22 to 37 is an important segment for employers as baby boomers retire in huge numbers to create what&... More >>

Consumers need to be on guard against common rental scams
(BPT) - You know the old saying, that if it's too good to be true, it probably is?Whether you're searching for your first rental or are a seasoned renter seeking a new place in a new city, be aware that rental scams are more common than you think.Here's how the scam plays out A scam artist finds a ... More >>

Tips for empty nesters to maximize summer travel
(BPT) - With the kids out of the house and newfound independence, summer is the perfect time of year for empty nesters to embark on bucket list trips they’ve always craved. In fact, according to a recent survey conducted by Tracfone, 68 percent of empty nesters say that traveling is a priorit... More >>

Ready to switch wireless carriers? Answer these 6 important questions first
(BPT) - Changing your wireless carrier is an important (and potentially expensive) decision. Before you make the switch, answer these simple questions to make sure you make the move that’s right for you.1. Are you free to go?While carrier contracts in the U.S. are quickly becoming things of t... More >>

Be prepared for the 2018 storm season
(BPT) - For millions of Americans, the devastation of the 2017 storm season is still fresh in their minds. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the cumulative cost of the weather events in the U.S. was $306.2 billion. Whether you were directly affected by one of those s... More >>

Quick DIY home improvement projects
(BPT) - The words home improvement usually conjure up images of major undertakings like tiling your bathroom or kitchen or tearing down a wall, taking hours or even days to complete. The fact is there are some meaningful home improvements you can finish in under two hours.1) Need more daylight? Hav... More >>

5 home-buying tips for first-timers and old-timers
(BPT) - Whether you are buying a home for the first time or you are just looking for an upgrade, it is never a bad idea to arm yourself with tips that can make your search go from overwhelming to enjoyable. Rather than learning the hard way about hidden expenses and difficult neighbors, there are t... More >>

Are you a caregiver? Try these 7 resources
(BPT) - When David Bowen’s father fell taking out the trash in 2016, it set in motion a series of health challenges the family is still battling together. Bowen, 62, hired a part-time professional caregiver to assist his father and his mother, who was battling Alzheimer’s, but he found ... More >>

Businesses brace for a summer with record low unemployment
(BPT) - School closing for the summer may mark lazy days for kids, but local businesses are bracing for peak season. With unemployment at a 17-year low, and a record 6.6 million job openings reported at the end of March, it’ll be tougher than usual to serve the seasonal boom of customers as t... More >>

Take the sting out of summer with these pest prevention tips
(BPT) - If you’re like many people, the warm months of summer are when you are most active outdoors. You’re not alone. The same is also true for fleas, ticks and mosquitoes. New findings show these pests are more than just an annoyance, they can pose a health risk. According to the Cent... More >>

Easy and breezy: 6 tips for controlling summer cooling costs
(BPT) - As Americans gear up for sun, surf, barbecues and all the other fun activities that represent summer, they’re also concerned with how to keep themselves and their homes comfortably cool this season.Of course, they're also concerned with controlling costs. The average homeowner spends ... More >>

How much will it cost to replace your roof?
(BPT) - How can there be thousands of dollars difference between contractor bids for similar home improvement projects on neighboring homes? And how can homeowners get an idea of what a new roof will cost?In general, labor for a new roof should make up 60-65 percent of the cost and most of the rema... More >>

Stay agile: 5 tips for easier aging in place
(BPT) - While many of us may dream of retiring and moving away to a beach-side resort or cabin by the lake, the reality is that most Americans look forward to remaining in their own homes so they can continue to enjoy familiar comforts, activities and loved ones. In fact, an AARP survey recently fo... More >>

Home improvement: One repair at a time
(BPT) - Tis the season … for home improvement. Longer days, warmer weather and more flexible schedules (hello, summer break!) have a way of inspiring home improvement projects. It’s as if appliances in and around the house emerge from the shadows of winter, calling out for attention. S... More >>

New technology will define the future of farming
(BPT) - When you think of automated vehicles, you probably think of driverless cars. While that particular movement is certainly in the news, it’s not the only place where driverless technology is gaining momentum. Did you know that driverless technology innovations are occurring every day in... More >>

5 reasons to use a financial professional
(BPT) - True or false: You need to be wealthy to use a financial professional. It's a common misconception, but in fact there are financial professionals that can help at various stages in life, whether you’re just starting out or nearing retirement. It can be a huge benefit to sit down with ... More >>

5 tips when buying a car for a teen
(BPT) - With graduation season and summer break upon us, many parents may be on the hunt for a new car for their graduate. Memorial Day deals offer some of the best incentives of the year, so it's crucial to know how to navigate what can be an overwhelming and exhausting process.“USAA helps m... More >>

Why world travelers are going cashless
(BPT) - What’s your dream vacation?Whether you live to travel or only manage to get away for a couple of long weekends every year, you probably have a bucket list of places to go and sites to see.Sometimes it feels like there might be too many options.For some people, it’s adventure tra... More >>

Alternative financing options work for growing small businesses
(BPT) - How businesses access working capital has shifted, as traditional methods haven’t kept pace with the speed of business.Growth is one of the biggest indicators of small business success. According to the Small Business Administration (SBA), more than 500,000 businesses have between 20 ... More >>

Visa Returns Zlatan Ibrahimovic to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia [Video]
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Make the most of your landscaping projects this year with these tips
(BPT) - Home improvement projects aren't constrained to a single season, but during these warmer months, your focus is no longer simply on your home's indoors. Now there’s outdoor yard work to do as well, and if you're looking to recreate your outdoor space, your outside projects may include ... More >>

Looking ahead: 4 tips for scaling your small business
(BPT) - As the U.S. economy continues to move at a healthy pace, many analysts are projecting a 2.5 percent growth for 2018, which would represent the best two-year run since 2005.A big contributor to this growth, and to the high U.S. consumer confidence, which reached a 17-year high in Nov. 2017, ... More >>

If an injury or illness kept you out of work, could you pay your bills?
(BPT) - You helped friends move their furniture; now your back is so sore you can’t move. You could be out of work and unable to collect at least three paychecks.Your doctor says you’ve eaten your last bacon-wrapped hot dog, or your health could keep you out of work for four paychecks.Y... More >>

Simple summer home maintenance tips for comfort and energy savings
(BPT) - Things will soon be heating up all over the country. In fact, the average U.S. household will spend 3 percent more on electricity bills this summer than in 2017, due to rising retail electricity prices and higher usage, according to the U.S. Energy Administration’s estimation.Jennifer... More >>

Wildfire protection starts in these 5 places
(BPT) - It’s National Wildfire Awareness Week. So, if you live in a wildfire-prone area, make sure you’re taking the right steps to stave off potential damage long before flames rage toward your doorstep.And one of the best ways to do that is to take a look at the home itself."It's a co... More >>

3 ways to set the stage for the perfect summer soiree
(BPT) - The backyard barbecue is a staple of the American summer. Long days filled with sun, fun, family and friends are what make lifelong memories. Now is the perfect time to start planning for your next barbecue, so you, too, can create memories you won't soon forget.However, before you fire up ... More >>

Why small businesses need to think big this summer hiring season
(BPT) - Finding great employees hasn’t been easy for small businesses lately. And this summer, the competition could heat up even more.Thanks to a healthy economy, unemployment levels are low across the country. Many companies will be adding even more jobs as the weather warms up — espe... More >>

5 questions to ask when shopping for a mortgage
(BPT) - Buying a home is a major financial commitment. It’s exciting, but can also be confusing and overwhelming. Choosing the best mortgage that fits your needs is an important first step and first-time homebuyers in particular should research the many options and know the right questions to... More >>

Why would manufactured homes require a title?
(BPT) - On June 15, 1976, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) instituted the Federal Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standards — more commonly referred to as the “HUD Code.”With these regulations, HUD defined the safety and quality standards requir... More >>

The most common causes of homeowners insurance claims
(BPT) - The value of homeowners insurance is often thrust into the national spotlight when natural disasters happen. The devastation and financial loss they can cause reinforces the importance of making sure you have adequate insurance coverage to rebuild if disaster strikes your home. In 2017 alon... More >>

Advice for adult children of aging parents who need help at home
(BPT) - Helping a parent stay active and healthy at home can be achieved with careful planning. The rewards of personally caring for, or managing the care of, a loved one who needs help are innumerable. It’s an opportunity to give back and to offer a return on the loving investment they once ... More >>

Problem Gambling: Know When to Stop Before You Start
(BPT) - The bright lights. The energy and laughter that fills the room. Casinos are fun and exciting to the vast majority of people but for some, they can be problematic.Casinos are a form of entertainment, so how do you ensure what’s meant to be a fun and leisurely activity continues to be a... More >>








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