Archive for April, 2013

Hard Work U – No Student Loan Debt Here

Posted on April 30, 2013 by Saldutti

The College of the Ozarks barred its students from accepting federal student loans in the 1990s. Now, the Christian college is refusing to certify private student loans too, making it almost impossible to borrow money for college. Students are expected to work, earn scholarships and minimize spending instead.  The students have a ready model for following the pay-as-you-go plan. College of the Ozarks does not carry institutional debt, and waits to build facilities until enough money has been saved. The small liberal arts school recruits good students who have financial need, and provides jobs to help them get through school….

College Debt and the Impact on Retirement

Posted on April 25, 2013 by Saldutti

Here are some staggering student debt facts: Members of the class of 2011 owed an average of $26,600 in student loans upon graduation, 5% more than members of the class of 2010. Approximately 40% of student-loan borrowers are delinquent at some point during their first five years of repayments. Approximately 33% of recent graduates who have student loan debt report that they would have applied for more scholarships or financial aid, majored in a subject that would have resulted in a better-paying job or worked while in college if they had known more about the cost of living. In 2010,…

Credit Report vs. Credit Score

Posted on April 23, 2013 by Saldutti

Credit reports and credit scores can be perplexing – but do you know the difference? Confusing the two could actually end up costing you. Not only are credit reports and credit scores different, they are often used for different purposes. However, because the two are directly related, it can be easy to confuse the two, their purpose and potential effects on your finances.  U.S. News & World Report helps us sort them out: What is a credit report? Your credit report contains information detailing your credit history. This information can come from a number of sources, including lenders, utility companies…

Tax Refunds Can Hurt Your Finances

Posted on April 16, 2013 by Saldutti

What could be wrong about getting a $3,000 check in the mail? It’s great news if you’re like most Americans who have been strapped for cash. The average refund is just under that amount, surveys say. But millions of people use their refund in a way that virtually assures they’ll have less cash in the future than they might have had – and for some, the money can be misspent and become a negative. Studies of consumer behavior show that people spend money very differently depending on how it is acquired. In a well-known “windfall” study from 1994 at University…

Tax Day Freebies

Posted on April 15, 2013 by Saldutti

A new Pew survey found that 1/3 of Americans actually like doing their taxes. Perhaps more surprisingly, the prospect of free cinnabons and free curly fries on Tax Day has nothing to do with it.  Among fans of filing income taxes, the most popular reason cited for not hating the process is the likelihood of getting a refund. Some folks also like doing their taxes because they “don’t mind” or are “good at it” – it gives them a sense of control or they enjoy the feeling of doing their duty and paying their fair share. Marketers have come to…

5 Common Mistakes That Will Damage Your Credit

Posted on April 11, 2013 by Saldutti

Building a solid credit history is one of the most important things you can do from a financial perspective. By doing so, you’ll be able to borrow money more easily in the future and, even more importantly, qualify for a lower interest rate when buying a new home or car. Thus it is important to know what things will quickly ruin your credit if you are not careful. Here are five easy ways to damage your credit, from U.S. News & World Report: Closing credit card accounts – By closing credit card accounts, you reduce your amount of available credit….

Business Equipment Purchases To Increase in Late 2013

Posted on April 09, 2013 by Saldutti

The Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation is now predicting that investment in equipment and software will grow 5.6% in the U.S. in 2013.  That’s up from a previous 2.9% growth forecast that the foundation made in December. William Sutton, the foundation’s president, said that 2013 “will be a tale of two halves,” with sluggish growth in the first half of the year, followed by a pick-up in overall economic activity in the second half of the year.  “On balance, we expect the positives to outweigh the negatives as businesses begin to feel more confident and ready to invest in capital…

Responsible Ways to Pay Down Your Mortgage

Posted on April 08, 2013 by Saldutti

So you’re interested in a mortgage where you have lower interest rates, an earlier payoff date, and smaller monthly payments. Good news: There are a number of smart and financially sound ways this can be accomplished, according to national mortgage expert and “Your Home – Your Future radio show host, Joe Gross.  “But you want to make sure that you choose one that will best fit your particular financial situation,” he adds. Although everyone’s needs and financial situations differ, there are some facts about paying off your mortgage that apply across the board.  Check out Yahoo! Homes’ list of 5…

The 10 Plagues of Bad Credit

Posted on April 04, 2013 by Saldutti

You may not even realize the impact bad credit has on your life, but if you take a close look, you’ll see that it is likely costing you money, time and even relationships.  In the Old Testament, the people of Egypt suffered 10 plagues because Pharaoh wouldn’t allow Moses to lead his enslaved people away. Today, we may not have to worry about locusts or boils but there are 10 plagues that we can face when enslaved by bad credit. Check out this list from and consider which ones are impacting your life right now (or may impact your…