Your bags are packed, your itinerary is set and you’re counting down the minutes until you take off for your dream summer getaway. Before you head out, read through this checklist of important things people tend to forget before leaving for vacation.
The best way to teach a child financial responsibility is by encouraging her to earn and manage money on her own. As the weather warms and summer nears, there are many opportunities for your kids to pull in some extra money.
If money-making is not on your children’s minds, you may need to direct them toward that line of thinking. The next time they ask you to buy something that’s out of budget, tell them they can earn the money to buy it themselves. As an alternative, suggest that you’ll cover half the cost if they earn the other half. Talk to them about finding a summer job, the work they can do on weekends, or suggest a one-time gig they can initiate.
In honor of Youth Savings Month, let’s take a look at 9 easy ways your kids can earn some extra cash.
The sun is shining, the birds are chirping, the flowers are blooming—and your cluttered closets are calling. Time to roll up your sleeves and whip your home into shape. And yes, this means you! It’s been a long winter and you’ve let the clutter grow, all over your garage, across your basement and up into your attic crawl space. And your bedroom closets? We’re not even going there.
As always, Catholic Federal is here to help! Use this handy list of creative cleaning hacks to banish those dust bunnies without spending a fortune on organizers and cleaning solutions. Plus, you’ll be doing your part to help keep the planet green by skipping over those toxic cleansers this year.
Let’s get cleaning!
Self-care goes beyond our physical, emotional, social and spiritual needs—it includes our financial needs, too.
Financial self-care means taking the time to focus on your finances and create healthier money habits that lead to greater financial health and overall wellbeing. It’s time to make a commitment to show yourself some love and give your financial wellness the attention it deserves. Get started with these four steps for achieving greater financial health and overall well-being:
If you feel like you’ve been struggling to keep up with car payments, you’re not alone: According to a recent report from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, over 7 million Americans are at least 90 days behind on their auto loans.
If you’re like most Americans, you owe money on a large loan. Whether that’s credit card debt, a mortgage and/or a car loan, loan debt is part of your life. And that means you’re looking at hundreds of dollars in interest over the life of the loan. There’s also the mental load of knowing you’ll be paying on the debt for years to come.
Did you know there are simple tricks you can employ to lighten the load? With a carefully applied technique, you can pay off your mortgage, auto loan, credit card debt and any other debt you’re carrying sooner than you thought possible. These tricks are light on your finances, but they can make a big difference to the total interest you’ll pay over the life of the loan and get you debt-free faster.
A note of caution: Check with your lender before employing any approach, as some loans have penalties for making extra or early payments.
Shopping for a new home can be an exciting blur of listings, neighborhood scouting and open houses. There’s so much to consider! You want a house in the perfect neighborhood with that gorgeous kitchen and great yard, all within your budget.
And then, it all finally comes together and you think you’ve found your dream home. But don’t go “under contract” just yet! First, be sure to have an inspection contingency included in your contract. Doing so can save you a ton of aggravation and thousands of dollars in the long run.
Once you’re under contract, you’ll need to have your future home professionally inspected by a certified engineer or a licensed inspector. The inspector will carefully examine the entire house from top to bottom, checking its systems, structure and equipment for functionality and potential problems.
A home inspection will set you back several hundred dollars, but it can easily save you thousands down the line. Before you officially become the new owner of the house, learn all you can about its general condition.
Here are 7 reasons you don’t want to skip a home inspection:
Winter doldrums got you down? The empty calendar making you feel blue? Don’t pull out your wallet for some “retail therapy” just yet!
Right now is the time of year when the blues hit the hardest, so many people turn to their favorite foods, a round of shopping or some other costly means of escape. However, you can get the same results without spending a penny. Let Catholic Federal show you how to de-stress for less and send that down mood packing!
Read on for 7 pick-me-ups that are absolutely free.
It’s time to celebrate the significant other in your life! If you’re thinking that means pricey gifts, expensive dates and blowing an entire day’s salary on a restaurant meal, think again. There’s no need to drain your wallet while trying to create the perfect Valentine’s Day. Instead, use these eight hacks for a dream Valentine’s Day that doesn’t break the budget.
- Dine In
Restaurants typically up their prices when the whole world is going out to eat, so you’ll likely be paying extra just because it’s Valentine’s Day. Plus, trying to carry on a conversation in a noisy restaurant while keeping your elbow out of the soup on the next table is hardly a recipe for a romantic evening.
Instead of shelling out big bucks for a sub-par experience, cook up a gourmet meal at home. You can easily spend less than half of what you’d pay for the same food in a steakhouse by opting to DIY. If you both like puttering around the kitchen, prep your delicious dinner together. Don’t forget to set the ambiance with scented candles and soft music!
- Explore the great outdoors
Each year, the IRS publishes the “Dirty Dozen,” a list of 12 scams that are rampant during that year’s tax season.
This year, the IRS is cautioning taxpayers to be extra vigilant because of a 60% increase in email phishing scams over the past year. This is particularly disheartening, since it comes on the heels of a steady decline in phishing scams over the previous three years.
Typically, an email phishing scam will appear to be from the IRS. Once the victim has opened the email, the scammer will use one of several methods to get at the victim’s personal information, including their financial data, tax details, usernames and passwords. They will then use this information to steal the victim’s identity, empty their accounts or file taxes in the victim’s name and then make off with their refund.