Trim Your Budget Strategically to Battle Rising Prices, Rates

Consumers face rising prices almost everywhere they turn, including on basics like gas and food. At the same time, rising interest rates can translate into higher credit card payments for people carrying debt month to month. That double whammy of higher costs for both everyday spending and debt translates into greater financial strain on people’s budgets. While there’s not much … Continue reading


Use Your Tax Refund to Knock Down Debt, Lift Your Finances

So you’re expecting a tax refund this year. With inflation driving up the price of gas, food and nearly everything else, that extra money can’t come soon enough. The hard part is deciding how to spend it. Should you invest the money? Book a trip? If you really want to do yourself a favor, use your refund to pay off … Continue reading


3 Steps to Breaking Unhealthy Financial Habits

Some bad habits affect our physical health, like smoking, nail biting or eating too much junk food. But others take a toll on our financial health. How do you know if you have unhealthy financial habits, and what can you do to build better ones? Take these three steps. 1. Dig into your relationship with money Relationships with money are … Continue reading


How to Put Your Tax Refund to Work for You

The investing information provided on this page is for educational purposes only. NerdWallet and Point West does not offer advisory or brokerage services, nor does it recommend or advise investors to buy or sell particular stocks, securities or other investments. If you’re eagerly anticipating a tax refund in the coming weeks, you have good reason to be optimistic: The IRS … Continue reading


Wait, Whom Should We Tip for the Holidays — and How Much?

You’re likely planning to give some extra love to family and friends this time of year. But what about your dog walker or babysitter? If you haven’t already, consider showing appreciation for your service providers with a gift or bonus gratuity. After all, now is the time to “say ‘thank you’ and wish people well for the next year,” says … Continue reading


How to Sustain Generosity Beyond the Holidays

2020 asked a lot from us. We faced new challenges and reckoned with old ones, and often the world’s problems collided with our own individual needs. Help — whether in donations or even just attention — might’ve been hard to give when you required some yourself. If your finances are in better shape this giving season, you can be more … Continue reading


6 Steps to Higher Net Worth: A Year-End Financial Checklist

If you want to build momentum for your New Year’s money resolutions, set some financial improvements into motion before the end of the year. Here are six easy-to-implement steps to help boost your net worth going into the new year. 1. Mind your health insurance deductibles End-of-the-year financial planning strategies aren’t always this well-timed: “My son’s birthday is December 29th. His due … Continue reading


As You Shop Black Friday, Keep Return Policies in Mind

When you think of Black Friday, the first thing that pops to mind is probably gift buying. But many of those gifts will also need to be returned — and there are going to be lots of gifts this year. The National Retail Federation expects this year’s spending to be 8.5% to 10.5% higher than last year. Knowing and understanding … Continue reading


4 Ways to Sustain Savings Habits From the Pandemic

Whether out of choice or necessity, many people spent less money in the last year and a half on things like entertainment, clothes and furniture. For some, that meant holding on to more of their income. If you were able to save some cash, you’ve set yourself up to withstand future financial crises, especially if you can continue saving. Keep … Continue reading


How Gratitude Can Help Your Financial Life

Gratitude makes us more aware of the sources of joy, wonder and hope in our lives. Being grateful also can improve health, strengthen relationships and help us manage our money. Developing gratitude requires us to focus on what we have rather than on what we lack, says Meghaan Lurtz, a senior research associate with financial planning site Kitces.com and past … Continue reading


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