July 23, 2019

When I was in graduate school, I remember having conversations with my peers about the length of time it would take us to repay our student loans. For some of us, that meant closer to our proposed retirement years. For some older adults (60 and over), the realities of carrying student loan debt continue to increase.

Podcast Who Should Pay for College?
September 01, 2019

Do you think the student should pay for their own college expenses?  Or is it the parents’ responsibilities?  This is a tough question!

Desert road
September 01, 2019

On the financial to-do list, saving for retirement is one of easiest to say, I’ll do that another day! The good news is that two-thirds of Americans are saving for retirement, according to 2019 EBRI/Greenwald Retirement Confidence Survey. If you are one of these people, congratulations!

lipsticks all red, pink colors
January 08, 2020

Cosmetics may seem like a great gift for a teen, tween, sister, wife, girlfriend or any woman in your life, but with the rise of counterfeit cosmetics, a low price for a typically high end product may end up hurting a loved one or yourself. The beauty industry was valued at $532 billion dollars in 2017 with an expected market value of $805 billion dollars by 2023.

What to do with $1200? Hand holding $20 dollar bills.
April 02, 2020

Stop! Before you go too far planning your spending of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act payment, let’s take a look at the big picture. Unfortunately, the current economic downturn will be a reality for many months. Now is the time to strategize how best to manage this financially.

The first priority is to keep you and your family safe. Safety includes items like shelter and food. You may need the government relief payment to provide for these needs.

Grocery bag filled with vegetables, eggs, and fruit
April 08, 2020

Recently grocery stores have started offering a variety of services to help you shop. You can choose to shop online, pay online, have the grocery items delivered to your house and/or pick up your groceries at the store. Who knew you didn’t have to trek up and down the aisles to buy groceries! Here are some options to consider when deciding between services.

Cost –

Bills piling up
April 21, 2020

At different times in our life, seasons can get tough financially. If you find that you’re unable to make ends meet, you may have to make some tough decisions about which bills get paid before others. If you’re in this situation, here are some choices to consider.

Pay Basic Essentials

Woman streaming television eating popcorn
May 11, 2020

My family had been waiting to see the movie, Onward since we saw the first trailer in 2019. One of the local theaters is about a mile from our house, and we love to walk (when the weather permits) or take a short drive to see some of our favorite new movies. Since we couldn’t go to the theater when it was released, we were happy it was available to stream. Each year, we go through the motions of subscribing to or canceling streaming services based on changes to the service or the time of year when our favorite shows are available.

dog and cat cuddling
June 24, 2020

For as long as I can remember, we’ve always had a furry companion in my household. Whether it was a cat, dog, bird, or fish, having a pet as a companion can make many people happier. Having said that, pets have expenses to keep a pet healthy, happy, and safe.

minor child walking down the sidewalk
July 10, 2020

Choosing someone to raise your child in the event you die is a daunting task.  While godparents can be a potential choice for a guardian, without documentation from your will to nominate a personal guardian, your wishes may not be honored. Below are a few pieces of information I gathered from my research into the topic of guardianship:

Finding a Personal Guardian

July 13, 2020

Estate Planning is one of the most overlooked pieces of a holistic financial plan. It could be because we’re not only discussing money, but also death. Two of the most unfriendly topics in finances. With, estate planning is a really important part of finances, without a will, your estate can end up in probate with your possessions and assets in limbo.

Woman looking puzzled and stressed
October 13, 2020

Kathy Sweedler: This blog post was originally posted in 2013 by Karen Chan, CFP, retired Extension educator. A reader recently requested it. This is a timeless topic, still helpful today, and I’m happy to repost it.

When our father, died, I think my sister and I both felt like we were wading through a sea of details.

Individually, most of them weren’t a big deal. But the volume and speed with which they had to be handled made it stressful.

high water with pedestrian sign show flooded
October 19, 2020

I grew up in Jamaica, where one of the seasons is fondly referred to as the “rainy season,” which seemed like most of the year. Hurricanes, flash floods, earthquakes, and tropical storms are prevalent in the Caribbean. As a young child, I remember the adjustments my dad would make to our house. He would buy construction materials to batten down the windows and protected his workshop. I also can picture my mum securing essential documents such as our birth certificates, bank account information, medical information, and other necessary documentation as we brace for a storm.