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MoneyTips

Surprise! The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act may cause many changes in your tax situation. Instead of enjoying a tax refund this year, you may discover that you owe Uncle Sam. Even worse, you do not have the money to pay these surprise taxes. What can you do?

The good news is that you still have options but ignoring the tax bill is NOT one of them. That will only make your situation worse in the long run as you rack up fees and penalties.

Fortunately, the IRS and Treasury Department extended the tax filing and payment deadline from April 15 to July 15, 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In the interest of safety and to curb the spread of the coronavirus, all Taxpayer Assistance Centers have been closed temporarily and face-to-face IRS services have been suspended until further notice. See the IRS Coronavirus Tax Relief page for the latest updates and stay safe.

You must nevertheless m...

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MoneyTips

You have just closed on your home purchase and money is going to be tight for a while. Should you buy a home warranty to help you avoid out-of-pocket expenses or will it be a waste of money?

Before you decide if it will be worth it to you, you should understand what a home warranty really is and what it can do for you.

1. What is a Home Warranty?

A home warranty, also known as a home service contract, is a home protection plan that covers the cost of repairs or replacement of your home's critical systems and appliances when they get damaged or break down due to regular wear and tear. Many home warranty plans will typically cover:

  • Plumbing
  • Electrical
  • Major appliances, such as refrigerators, microwaves, washers, and dryers
  • HVAC, central vacuum, and garbage disposal systems
  • ...

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MoneyTips

Congratulations! You have saved for your child's education using a state 529 plan and built up a decent nest egg to send him or her off to school or college with minimal financial worries. Once a choice of school is made, you can apply the 529 funds toward the educational costs — but beware of these mistakes that parents make when first withdrawing from 529 plans.

Assuming the Process is Automatic – People are so used to the automated aspects of financial services that they expect 529 accounts to work in the same way. In the case of a 529 plan, you must request that the funds be withdrawn and direct them accordingly. Check with your 529 plan to verify the options. Typically, you can direct the funds to the school, beneficiary (student), or to the owner (parents). In all cases, you must initiate the withdrawal.

Not Correctly Assessin...

Back to School Savings

Check Before Using Your 529 For Pre-College Education

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MoneyTips


By Andrea Woroch

The first round of stimulus checks was sent out to millions of Americans across the country, with $218.4 billion paid out so far in an effort to ease the financial strain caused by the coronavirus outbreak. Although these payments provide some relief, using the money wisely is crucial in creating more financial stability.

According to a recent survey from the financial services firm IPX 1031, it appears consumers are making smart decisions with their stimulus payments so far. The study found that 29 percent of Americans plan to save this money, while another 20 percent will use it to pay their mortgage. However, the survey also found that 17 percent will pay off debt, 7 percent will pay their utility bills and another 11 percent will use it for "other" expenses. Although these seem like sensible strategies, there is a lot to consider w...

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MoneyTips

Saving for your child or grandchild's higher education is one of the most important investments you can make for his or her future. To make saving for college easier, the Qualified Tuition Program or 529 plan was created. Named after section 529 of the Internal Revenue code, it is a federal-income-tax-free savings plan to be used for qualified educational expenses. Many states throughout the country also offer their own versions of the 529 plan; those are administered by state agencies and other organizations.

Two different 529 plans available

Currently, there are two different versions of the 529 plan from which to choose:

  • Prepaid tuition plans - These plans allow for the pre-purchase of tuition based on today's interest rates, with money to be disbursed when the beneficiary enters college. Prepaid tuition plans are usually managed by state organizations or by colleges and universities. The funds in prepaid tuition plans ...

Why Aren't 529 Plans More Popular?

Back to School Savings

Check Before Using Your 529 For Pre-College Education

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