How Long Does It Take to Improve Your Credit

How long does it take to improve your credit? That’s a great question. Unfortunately, the answer is, “It depends.” It depends on what your credit score is now, and why. And it depends on how much you want to improve your credit score. Serious credit problems — foreclosures, collections records, etc. — will stick to […]


60 Second Guide to Making IRA Contributions

The other day I received an email from the IRS about IRA contributions. Believe it or not, the IRS has done a lot over the last few years to provide really helpful information about everything tax related. So I signed up for the emails, and they have been extremely helpful. So today I thought I’d […]


PowerShares S&P 500® High Quality Portfolio (SPHQ) Review

When I first started investing, I had the hardest time figuring out which mutual funds to select. Over the years, I’ve learned that the key selection criteria are costs and asset class (e.g., large cap U.S. vs. small cap). Still, with 1,000s of mutual funds and ETFs, picking the right investments can seem overwhelming. To […]


How Not to Spend $235,000+ to Raise a Child

What does it cost to raise a child? The USDA says it costs $235,000+ to raise a child from birth to 18. I say, not a chance. You can raise a child for much less with these tips. You’ve likely read reports from “experts” detailing the cost of raising a child, but how accurate are […]


How to Refinance a Mortgage That’s Underwater

Photo: 401(K) 2013 If you’re underwater on your home – meaning you owe more than your home is worth – you’re certainly not alone. Many American families are in the same situation because of the real estate market crash. Even though property prices are starting to rise in some areas of the country, many families […]


When You Need Self Storage, and When It’s a Terrible Investment

Photo: masanori_jpn According to the Self Storage Association, self storage has been one of the fastest-growing pieces of the U.S. commercial real estate industry for more than three decades. And it’s no surprise. We have a lot of stuff, and we like to keep it. That’s evident from these statistics from the association’s 2012 fact […]