Budgets are nothing to joke about—though British writer Sally Poplin once observed that while “some couples go over their budgets very carefully every month, others just go over them.” According to a 2013 Gallup poll, barely a third of Americans work with a household budget. Yet experts agree that keeping one is the best way… Read More

Life insurance should be a consideration in your overall personal finance plan

If you think of life insurance as a useless postmortem payday, consider these “pro” arguments. On the short list of things we don’t talk about in polite company, death and money rank pretty high. Perhaps that’s why life insurance, which involves both, doesn’t typically make for lively cocktail-party banter. If you’re among the 60 percent… Read More

Paying your bills on time isn’t always enough to keep a high rating. Watch out for these hidden pitfalls. You don’t need to be an MBA to know the best ways to damage your credit rating. It’s actually rather easy: Just fail to pay your bills on time (or, better yet, don’t pay them at… Read More

They’re doing okay, but they still face big challenges. Here are 6 tips for talking to your kids about saving! Fact: Kids today have inherited a very different world than the one their parents grew up in—whether we came of age in the 1960s, ’70s or ’80s. Fact: Despite their progressive social attitudes, Millennials (generally… Read More

Think that rock-bottom, factory-closeout price is a great deal? Think again. If you learned to speak Minnesotan from Garrison Keillor on his iconic radio show, “A Prairie Home Companion,” you might know the difference between “not a bad deal” and “a heckuva deal.” But for the large swath of the population who don’t speak Minnesotan,… Read More