Spring Cleaning Your Debt

It's springtime--time for you to take stock of your surroundings and get rid of the dirt and clutter that you've accumulated during this past year. In addition to typical spring cleaning tasks, you may want to take this time to focus on your finances. If you have followed my blog posts, now may be as good a time as ever to evaluate your debt situation and try to reduce and/or eliminate any debt obligations you may have. The following are some tips to get you started. 

Determine whether it makes...

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ACA Update: Keeping Your Current Health Insurance? It May Cost You Benefits

Beginning January 1, 2014, the health insurance mandate provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) took effect. As you’ve read in our recent blogs, this provision requires most U.S. citizens and legal residents to have minimum essential health coverage or pay a penalty fee.

If you already have health insurance, you may have the option of keeping it or opting for a new plan. That's because the ACA includes provisions for grandfathering health insurance plans in existence on...

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Lessons Learned: 3 Changes Affecting the Financial Landscape of a College Education

What's New in the World of Higher Education? If you follow my recent blogs about higher education, you know the answer is “plenty.” Whether you have a son or daughter just beginning the college planning process, you are in college or considering returning, or are in repayment, the financial choices you make today will affect you for years. We’re up-to-date and always informed of the changes affecting higher education. Here are a few of more pressing issues:

Costs for 2013-2014

Question: What goes...

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What Baseball Can Teach You About Financial Planning

Spring training and opening day are traditions that baseball teams and baseball fans look forward to every year. No matter how they did last year, teams in spring training are full of hope that a new season will bring a fresh start. As this year's baseball season gets under way, here are a few lessons from America's pastime that might help you reevaluate your finances.

 

Sometimes you need to proceed one base at a time

There's nothing like seeing a home run light up the scoreboard, but games are...

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Robert Coode Named 2014 Cleveland Five Star Wealth Manager

Skoda Minotti, a national CPA, financial and business advisory firm headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio, announced Financial Services Principal Robert Coode has been named a 2014 Cleveland Five Star Wealth Manager from Five Star Professional Magazine.

The Five Star program is the largest and most widely published financial services award program in North America. Award candidates who satisfied 10 objective eligibility and evaluation criteria determine the Five Star Wealth Managers in more than 40...

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Married Filing Jointly or Separate? The Choice is Yours

If you are married, you generally have a choice of filing your federal income tax return(s) as married filing jointly (MFJ) or as married filing separately (MFS). Because of a number of special rules, your combined tax will often be lower if you file married filing jointly than if you file married filing separately, but that is not always the case. You should generally calculate your tax both ways to determine which filing status results in the lower total tax.

Basic rules

You and your spouse can...

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Financial Aid 101

Many parents pay for college with a combination of savings and financial aid. By learning the basics, you'll be able to understand how the financial aid process works, properly fill out aid applications, and compare the aid awards your child receives.

What is financial aid?

Financial aid is money distributed primarily by the federal government and colleges in the form of student loans, grants, scholarships, and work-study jobs. Loans and work-study must be repaid (through monetary or work...

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Getting Help from a Financial Professional

Are you suddenly on your own or forced to assume greater responsibility for your financial future? Are you unsure about whether you're on the right track with your savings and investments? Are you finding yourself with new responsibilities, such as the care of a child or an aging parent? Are you facing other life events, such as marriage, divorce, the sale of a family business, or a career change? Are you too busy to become a financial expert, but need to ensure your assets are...

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The Frugal Habits of Millionaires: How to Cut Costs and Save Money

The word "millionaire" typically conjures up images of a lavish, jet-setting lifestyle, but behind the scenes, that may not always be the case. Like Warren Buffett, who famously still lives in the relatively modest house in Omaha, Nebraska, that he bought in 1958 for $31,500, many millionaires (and billionaires) live a modest, if not downright frugal lifestyle—a lifestyle that may have helped them become millionaires in the first place.

We've all heard the saying "It takes money to make money."...

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Your IRA Contribution Limits for 2014

The amount you can contribute to your traditional or Roth IRA remains $5,500 for 2014, $6,500 if you're 50 or older. You can contribute to an IRA in addition to an employer-sponsored retirement plan like a 401(k). If you or your spouse participate in an employer-sponsored plan, however, the amount of traditional IRA contributions you can deduct may be reduced or phased out, depending on your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI).

Your ability to make annual Roth contributions may also be phased...

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