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RENSSELAER — The second annual Jasper and Newton County Job Fair will take place Wednesday, May 1, from 2:30-4:30 p.m. in the West Building of the Jasper County Fairgrounds.

National Business

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MoneyTips

Congratulations! You've just finished paying off your mortgage – probably the largest debt you'll ever have in your life. Should you expect your credit score to increase as a result? Not necessarily.

Your credit score is calculated from your credit report, a history of all of your borrowing and payment activity. While your mortgage was probably a huge part of that history, it's just one part. Credit reports also consider other installment loans, your credit card payments, and any payments for non-borrowing related charges (like cable or utility bills) that have gone into collections. Every account matters and contributes to your credit score.

Consider the factors that go into calculating a credit score, starting with payment history – the most influential factor. Mortgages require regular payments for a long time. With those payments removed, that's one less regular payment that proves you...

How To Accelerate Mortgage Payments

Video: When To Accept Mortgage Prepayment Penalties

Understanding Mortgage Prepayment

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MoneyTips

Welcome to parenthood! You are a proud new father, simultaneously overjoyed and terrified. Since you are now responsible for another human being, you should know that the estimate of what it will cost to raise your child is approximately a quarter of a million dollars, without accounting for inflation. If you would like to send him or her to college, you will probably need at least that much more.

A 2017 report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) estimated the cost of raising a child from birth to age 17 at $233,610 ($284,570 adjusted for inflation). That is for the average middle-income couple; costs ranged from families in the Northeast that will spend around $264,090 to residents in the urban Midwest and rural regions who will spend about $227,400 and $193,020, respectively.

Unfortunately, that figure is not likely to drop, and inflation-adjusted w...

How People Spend Money On Father's Day Gifts

6 Best Buys For Father's Day

Cost of Raising a Child

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MoneyTips

Americans appear to be feeling more confident in their finances – at least with respect to their credit card payments.

According to a new survey from CompareCards.com, more Americans are paying their credit card bills in full. As of January 2019, 39% of survey respondents paid all credit card bills in full over the last six months and 69% paid at least half of their bills in full over the same time period.

"It's great news that more Americans are paying their card statement balances in full each month," said CompareCards.com Chief Industry Analyst Matt Schulz. "Job No. 1 for anyone with a credit card is to pay your balance off as soon as possible, and it's a positive sign that more Americans are able to do that every month."

If consumers follow through on their survey statements, momentum for full payments will keep growing.

Almost half (48%) of respondents are very confident they will pay all credit card bills in full for the current month's ...

Credit Card Grace Periods

When You Don't Have A Credit Card Grace Period

Credit Card Interest Rate Hikes 101

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MoneyTips

Father's Day is coming up on June 17th. What can you get Dad to celebrate his special day without loading up the credit cards? Sometimes simpler gifts are the best. Simpler gifts may also be your only option if you are young and short on cash, or if your credit is not up to scratch right now. You can check your credit score and read your credit report for free within minutes by joining MoneyTips.

What does your Dad like to do in his spare time (if he has any)? What are his hobbies and his favorite activities outside of work? With a bit of recon before Father's Day and the occasional leading question, you can get some idea of what he might like or need. Hint: if Dad is like 99.9% of Dads, the best choice is not aftershave or a necktie — no matter how cool the necktie is. ...

How People Spend Money On Father's Day Gifts

Five Fun Financial Facts: Father’s Day - #1 of 5

Costs of Being a Dad

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MoneyTips

Father's Day will be here soon. Have you picked up anything for Dad yet?

You probably will, if statistics count for anything. In 2019, spending on Father's Day will account for an estimated record $15.96 billion in sales, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF). That's a pretty impressive number – not in the league with Christmas, but not far behind the spending levels of Valentine's Day and Easter.

While Father's Day spending is substantial, the total of $15.96 billion and average of $139 in 2019 is surpassed by the record $24.95 billion total and $196 average spent on Mother's Day – and the gap is expected to grow in the future. Sor...

6 Best Buys For Father's Day

Five Fun Financial Facts: Father’s Day - #1 of 5

How the Federal Reserve Affects Loan Rates

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MoneyTips

Total student debt in America is almost $1.5 trillion, while the average person with education debt in 2018 owed between $20,000 and $24,999. This massive debt load threatens the ability of recent and future graduates to reach their goals of home ownership and economic independence.

How can you successfully get your children through college without subjecting them to suffocating debt obligations? You may not be able to escape completely debt-free, but here are five ways to lighten the load of student debt as much as possible.

1. Start Saving Early – You can't beat the preemptive approach. Use the power of compound interest and start saving as early as possible for your child's education. Don't wait until the junior high or high school years — establish your fund before he or she starts grade school. Put away wh...

Paying For College – More Planning, Less Borrowing (Infographic)

3 Alternatives To Student Loans

Is Your Diploma Worth the Debt Load?

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MoneyTips

Congratulations! You made it through college armed with a degree, and hopefully a job. Now it's time to move on to the next stage of your education: life. The tests are all open book, the deadlines are varied, and some lessons are much harder and carry higher stakes than others do. Worst of all – there is very little grading on the curve.

Sure, you know your GPA, but do you know your credit score? You can see it for free right now by joining MoneyTips.

One of your first post-graduate lessons should be on the proper use of credit. Poor early decisions regarding credit can have adverse effects for years. In the words of millennial money expert Stefanie O'Connell, "It's really important for millennials to understand what a critical role credit plays in your life ... it's cr...

Income Share Agreements

College Students: Good With Credit Cards, But Not Credit-Smart

Video: The Top 5 Credit Mistakes Millennials Are Still Making

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When you were a first-time homebuyer, you were probably surprised by the total amount of fees and closing costs. Are you familiar with the costs on the selling side?

A recent study from Zillow and Thumbtack calculated the average costs of selling a home both nationwide and in specific markets. The national average is $20,851, which is enough to make a down payment in many markets. The average costs of selling a home vary based on location, with cities ranging from the average $13,704 in St. Louis, MO, to a staggering $83,770 in San Jose, CA.

Home prices drive the difference between markets. Most of the costs – $14,281 of the $20,851 average – are real estate agent/broker commissions and state transfer/sales taxes, both of which are percentages of the home's sale price. The remaining costs are mostly associated with home preparation. Between exteri...

Top 10 Secrets to Selling Your Home

How Quitting Smoking Will Help You Sell Your Home

Using Videos To Sell Your Home

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From its humble beginnings in a basement in East Peoria, to becoming a multi-million dollar company with plants in numerous states and countries, Jordan Manufacturing has seen its share of cha…

The Pulaski/White Rural Telephone Cooperative (PWRTC), dba LightStream, Board of Directors are excited to announce it has named Brent Gillum to serve as CEO. Gillum will be responsible for lea…

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Some businesses get started in the basement, while others might start in the garage. Wrede and Sons of Monticello got their start on a farm located on Diamond Point Road, two miles east of Mon…

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Mosey Down Main Street is synonymous with the lively atmosphere of downtown mixed with a business community that stays open for business whenever it’s given the chance.