Banking Has Changed, but Criminals Haven’t — Here’s How to Protect Your Money

This year marks a decade since the global financial crisis. Although the biggest financial institutions still dominate the landscape, banking has undergone some changes. The proliferation of smartphones means mobile banking now plays a significant role in how we manage our money. A 2016 Fed survey found that over half of smartphone users with bank accounts used their devices to access their money.

What hasn’t changed since 2008? Con artists. Continue reading

3 Simple Things Anyone Can Do to Stay Out of Debt

With a swipe here and a swipe there, it can be easy to live your life on plastic and pile up debt. You’re not alone: U.S. households carried credit card balances that totaled $815 billion in debt in the first quarter of 2018, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

Sticking to a budget, spending wisely and focusing on your financial goals can help you use your money for the things that are most important to you — without taking on the burden of credit card debt. Here are three strategies to help you avoid the debt trap. Continue reading

Nine Ways to Master Your Money

1. Set S.M.A.R.T. Goals
Saving tends to be easier when you have a certain purpose in mind: Saving for your first house, your retirement at a certain age, a child’s college education, or even a trip around the world. The important thing is for your goals to be specific, measurable, actionable, realistic and time-bound, or SMART. Continue reading

Affordable Ways to Refresh Your Home

Home improvements can rejuvenate a stale dwelling. But remodeling and renovations could set you back thousands of dollars for each room.

A “midrange minor kitchen remodel” — including hardware, countertops, flooring and a refrigerator — is about $21,000, on average, according to Remodeling magazine’s 2018 Cost vs. Value report. But with the right approach, you can give your abode some TLC without busting your budget. Continue reading