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Moving during the holidays can be a headache with all the seasonal activities and obligations – not to mention unpleasant weather in many locations. However, there are plenty of positives to buying a home during the holidays that may make the headaches of moving worth the effort, including the seven listed below.

1. Less Competition – The same issues that make holiday moving a hassle tend to keep people from shopping for homes at that time. While there may be fewer homes available, there are also fewer homebuyers – and that should equal less competition for any home that fits your needs.

2. Motivated Sellers – Home sellers don't enjoy moving over the holidays any more than homebuyers do. It's likely that people who are selling their homes over the holidays are highly motivated to do so. Perhaps they must relocate for a new job, or their home has been on the market for a long time and they need the money from a sale before the yea...

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MoneyTips

Black Friday, this year on November 27, offers some of the lowest prices of the year on many consumer goods including TVs, other electronics and toys. Savvy shoppers save hundreds or even thousands of dollars on this single day.

Shopping on Black Friday is extremely hectic and overwhelming due to so many amazing deals. Stores open extremely early and most only offer their best deals on a first-come, first-serve basis. Finding and keeping track of all of these deals is not easy. To help you, we have put together these tips for saving at both online and in-store sales on Black Friday.

  1. Make a List of Items You Want to Buy - Your objective for Black Friday should be to buy only the items on your list at the lowest price possible. Please note, we did not say you should buy the items with the biggest discounts at each store because you should not. Why not? Retailers will try very hard to get you to buy things that are not on your list. This d...

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MoneyTips

The holidays are supposed to be a jolly time, but this year is shaping up to be a bit more stressful than usual as consumers worry about their financial situations and stress over seasonal expenses. In fact, a recent survey from Gallup found that consumers plan to spend an average of $805 on gifts this year, down from last year’s average spend of $942.

The good news is that you don't have to spend a lot of money to make the most of this year's holiday celebration and, for anyone who is eager to escape their home, a nearcation provides an affordable getaway option. While you will be saving money by driving rather than flying, it's still important to consider other ways to keep your overall vacation costs low.

Here are five tips to save on a holiday nearcation.

1. Travel before or after the holiday.

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MoneyTips

You want to throw a holiday party but simply cannot afford to spend big bucks in the process. The holidays are full of expenses already without dropping hundreds or even thousands of dollars on festivities. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to cut down on holiday party costs and still create a great atmosphere. Consider these suggestions to help you party on a budget.

  • Invitations – Keep the invitations as simple as the circumstances will allow. What is appropriate depends on whom you are inviting. If you are throwing an informal party, make your own simple and whimsical paper invitations, or simply save on paper and postage and go completely paperless. If appropriate, consider invitations via e-mail or social media.

    If paper invitations are a must, consider alternatives such as a postcard that costs less to mail. At the very least, look for sales and clearances on fancier stationery. If you want more credit, check out our list of <...

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MoneyTips

Thanksgiving is a time to relax and enjoy a nice dinner with your loved ones. You don’t want to spend it stressing over the Thanksgiving budget; you want to spend it having an enjoyable day with friends and relatives, and relaxing on the couch with a tryptophan-induced nap.

Try these tips to save dollars on your holiday spread and avoid worrying about holiday budgeting woes.

  1. Host a Potluck – Split the mealtime burden up by making Thanksgiving a potluck dinner. Not only will this distribute the economic burden among the Thanksgiving table, it offers a chance for new and interesting side dishes and desserts. You may end up with some tasty variations that become new family traditions.

    You may want to coordinate the dishes with all of the expected guests so you don’t end up with 15 desserts a...

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MoneyTips

Home sellers and their agents may be limiting their potential base of buyers by ignoring a growing pool of them. Mortgage industry software company Ellie Mae reports that loans acquired through the Veterans Affairs (VA) Department account for 10% of all primary insured home loans.

It is easy to see why VA backing is preferable from a buyer's point of view. If you qualify, you can purchase a house with no money down (up to a particular loan limit that varies by market) and no Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) requirement. Yet, sellers shy away from buyers with VA loans, and seller's agents may serve as a screen to exclude VA-backed offers from ever reaching the seller.

Why is this so? It makes little sense, since the risk of default is borne by the lending institution and not the buyer. In addition, foreclosures ...

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