The average FICO score for people denied a mortgage in September 2013 was 696, according to Ellie Mae. That’s a pretty good score by any account—the highest possible score is 850, after all. This illustrates how tight credit has become since the financial crisis of 2008. Every single point counts when you’re seeking the best terms and interest rates on mortgages, credit cards and loans. Here are a few tricks to maximize your score. Continue reading 4 Simple Tricks to Improve Your FICO Score
Seasonality doesn’t just affect the weather; prices across a wide range of products can change on a month-to-month basis as demand fluctuates. Considering millions of consumers will shop for Mother’s Day gifts this week, being aware of these best and worst buys can help you make smarter purchasing decisions that delight Mom and keep your budget intact. Take a look at these worst buys and consider gifting a best buy for Mom. Continue reading The 6 Best and Worst Mother’s Day Buys
The $1000 ETF Portfolio
If you’re scared that $1000 is too little to begin investing – let alone create a portfolio – you’d be wrong. Many of the basic principles of diversification and index investing used by investors with far deeper pockets apply to us mere humans, too. And they can be cheaply replicated using ETFs.
The allure of Exchange Traded Funds is simple: They trade like stocks, but contain a basket of assets, much like a mutual fund. This provides instant diversification, without the need to research every single stock or bond you buy. They also typically offer lower fees and expense ratios than many mutual funds, and you can often trade them for free when you buy them directly from their source (such as Fidelity or Vanguard). Continue reading The $1000 ETF Portfolio
Sure, your twenties are a time for experimentation and growth, but they’re also essential for your financial future. Our friends at Kiplinger.com outline 10 financial commandments for 20-somethings. We think they’re good rules Millenials should pay heed to:
Develop a marketable skill—before you can start worrying about what to do with your money, you need to earn some. Think in terms of your career, not just a job. Because let’s face it: you’re probably not going to love your first job, and it won’t be your last job. But you should try to make the best of it. Don’t be afraid to experiment—you need to take risks when you’re younger. Continue reading 10 Financial Rules for 20-Somethings