Make a Plan to Get Your Money Resolution Back on Track

We’re three months into 2021. Let’s check on those financial New Year’s resolutions. (Remember those?) Quite possibly, they’ve already gone awry. Maybe you planned to build a $1,000 emergency fund, but the balance is still zero. Or perhaps you swore off takeout, yet you’re scraping the last bite of chow mein from a paper container as you read this. Don’t … Continue reading


3 Ways COVID-19 Reshuffled Our Finances

The U.S. economy ground to a halt in March 2020 as state after state issued lockdown orders and shut down businesses to blunt the spread of the coronavirus. A year later, mask-wearing is commonplace, the phrase “social distancing” is now in the dictionary, elbow bumps have replaced fist bumps and hugs are still on pause. The tumult of the COVID-19 … Continue reading


Turn Your Quarantine Clutter Into Money

I placed more online orders than I can count in 2020. And I justified all of them. My front porch was filled with boxes containing all sorts of things: furniture (I needed to redecorate), paper towels (I needed to stock up), crafts (I needed activities), board games (more activities) and a treadmill (I needed exercise). But if I’m being honest, … Continue reading


Finances Unscathed by Pandemic? Seize the Moment and Tackle Debt

After close to a year of living with the pandemic, the effect on people’s finances has varied widely. If you’re in the fortunate position of still having a steady income, you can plan for what lies ahead in 2021. A good first step is dealing with debt. Maybe you leaned on credit cards to get through the ups and downs … Continue reading


What the New COVID Relief Package Means For Your Money

A second wave of federal coronavirus relief totaling $900 billion could begin flowing to millions of Americans as soon as the year’s end, nearly nine months after Congress passed the original pandemic relief package known as the CARES Act. Here’s what the COVID relief package — part of a $2.3 trillion spending bill — could mean for you, your family, your home … Continue reading


Life and Money Lessons From the Pandemic

I’m a “be prepared” kind of person. I like having money in the bank and a good stock of emergency supplies. But I wasn’t prepared to see empty shelves at the supermarket, or thousands of cars lined up at a Texas  food bank, or nurses dressed in garbage bags because there wasn’t enough protective equipment. The pandemic showed me that … Continue reading


How to Protect Your Credit When Shopping for the Holidays

The rules for protecting credit during the holidays usually don’t vary much from year to year, but in 2020, COVID-19 has changed where and how we shop. And money’s tight for a lot of people. About 40% of Americans said they plan to spend less on holidays this year due to the pandemic, according to a recent NerdWallet survey. On the … Continue reading


Feeling Out of Control? These Money Moves Could Help

Behavioral economist Dan Ariely and his colleagues at Duke University’s Center for Advanced Hindsight have a pact. Every week, the group of 50 people picks one small business in Durham, North Carolina, and each person spends $100 there. A one-time $5,000 infusion wouldn’t make a difference to Amazon, Costco or any other large retailer, but it could be enough to … Continue reading


Can You Have Too Much Credit?

People who care about their credit scores tend to obsess about some things they probably shouldn’t, such as the possibility they might have too much credit. Let’s bust that myth right upfront: The leading credit scoring formulas, FICO and VantageScore, don’t punish people for having too many accounts. And right now, having access to credit could be a lifeline. In … Continue reading


Is That ‘Contact Tracer’ Really a Scammer? How to Tell

If you’re contacted about possible exposure to the coronavirus, make sure it’s legit. Scammers are masquerading as contact tracers, and it’s smart to verify calls or texts before giving out any information. A tracer’s job is to help contain the pandemic by reaching out to people who may be spreading the coronavirus. You could be called because your test was … Continue reading


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