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September 30, 2017  

Consider this when buying a house

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There are lots of things to consider when you are thinking about buying a house. The first thing is to decide if it is better to rent or buy. Then there is the cost, the location, the size and all the other stuff that comes with being a homeowner. This podcast will help you learn more about all the things you need to take into account when making the largest financial decision of your life.

Read the Compass Catholic blog for more tips on buying a house and avoiding financial disaster.  The calculators on the Compass Catholic website will help you calculate mortgage loan payments, down payments, or acceleration on your current mortgage.

Read Evelyn's Blog: Consider This Before You Buy a House

 

September 30, 2017  

How to save money on your taxes

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In Mark 12:17, Jesus said to pay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar, but if Caesar creates rules that allow you to lower your taxes . . . then take advantage of those opportunities! Here are some tax saving ideas.

  • Adjust the number of dependents claimed on your W4 form so you are tax neutral.
  • Boost your retirement savings and reduce your taxes by contributing to a qualified retirement plan.
  • Take advantage of a health spending account and a child-care reimbursement account if your employer offers them.
  • A child born, or adopted, is a blessed event for your tax return. An added dependency exemption will knock $4,050 off your taxable income.

Saving money on your taxes isn’t just an April 15th tax-day exercise. Monitor your income and expenses to save on your taxes all year long.

Read Evelyn's Blog: Tax Saving Ideas

 

September 29, 2017  

Vacation Planning

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It’s about that time of year when we start daydreaming about basking in the sun on the beach, then we wake up and wonder how we’ll pay for it.

You should ALWAYS pay cash for a vacation because it is silly to finance a luxury.  No matter where you’re going, there are plenty of simple ways to cut expenses. Here are some ideas:

  • Sign up for a travel-related credit card and use the points to pay for hotel or air fare costs.
  • Be flexible with times and days when booking flights.
  • Travel off-season. Just before or after peak season will get you lower prices, smaller crowds and the weather will still be nice.
  • Avoid the most popular destinations and try a similar location. Places like Costa Rica, Croatia and coastal areas in Brazil are more affordable than you think.
  • Look for vacation rentals, rather than hotel rooms. We have gotten some great deals from VRBO.
  • Take free tours. In many major cities around the world, the locals offer free walking tours to show you the city’s highlights and teach you about the culture.

Read Evelyn's Blog: Planning Your 2018 Vacation.