It's a great time to get out of gift exchanges you don't want to participate in. It's also a good time to put your bargain hunting on auto pilot.
It's June, so there's no better time to write about Christmas. Right? Right.
The truth of the matter is that just a little bit of forethought right now can save you a ton of time, effort, cost, and heartache this December. While it might feel really out of place to think about Christmas on a warm June day, right now is the perfect time to give these five things a quick thought.
Losing your home to foreclosure is one thing. But walking away just because it's financially convenient could hurt down the road.
With millions of Americans owing more on their mortgages than their houses are worth, many are opting for a "strategic default" -- allowing a house to go back to the bank, even though the borrower may be capable of making the payments.
In some states, those who choose a strategic default face lawsuits from lenders anxious to collect what they're owed. Now, the quasi-governmental agency Fannie Mae has announced it's upping the stakes by barring those who walk away from getting an FHA-insured loan for seven years.
A California woman is turning flea market finds into cute dresses, jackets and tops -- one a day for an entire year. Her daily budget is a buck.
You've no doubt seen the young woman who created 365 very different looks based on one simple black dress and recycled or donated accessories. Sheena Matheiken's Uniform Project is a testament to creativity, style and resourcefulness.
Now we've come upon her even more frugal equivalent, who is very handy with a sewing machine. Marisa Lynch of West Hollywood is determined to turn outdated flea market and garage sale finds into attractive outfits -- one each day for an entire year -- with a $365 budget. Total. Plus, she's given up new-clothes shopping.
She often starts with tired, shapeless old things -- garments that are the fashion equivalent of a blue leisure suit or a comb-over hairstyle. The results?
A consumer group says including toys with unhealthful meals is 'creepy and predatory.'
The Center for Science in the Public Interest has given McDonald's an ultimatum: Do away with the Happy Meal toys or lawyer up.
The Washington, D.C., nonprofit served McDonald's with notice of intent Tuesday, giving the company 30 days to drop the toys before it finds itself defending against a class-action complaint. CSPI contends that including toys with unhealthful "junk food" is illegal under consumer-protection statutes in California, Texas, New Jersey, Massachusetts and the District of Columbia.
Perhaps we've gotten too critical about what others do with their money. But what if they're doing everything wrong?
We all do it: criticize the way our friends and family spend their money. If we're tactful, we don't do it to their faces.
But should we all be so judgmental?
The HAMP program, now a year old, struggles with the complicated business of salvaging troubled home loans.
This post comes from Marilyn Lewis of MSN Money.
The struggle continues over how to effectively and humanely end the country's gigantic foreclosure problem.
The results are in from the first year of the $50 billion federal mortgage modification program, created by the Financial Stability Act of 2009.
The numbers aren't dazzling.
Wedding cancellations because of the Gulf oil spill highlight both the strengths and weaknesses of wedding insurance.
Melissa Peralta and Jose Aguilar had been planning their wedding for nearly a year when a family issue required moving the date up by three months. Result? They lost the wedding venue they'd selected and the deposit they had put down to reserve it.
That's money they'd still have if they had purchased a wedding insurance policy. But wedding insurance isn't something that covers all contingencies. Nothing will.
Once you've covered the basics, the next best way to make your household secure is to boost the security of those around you.
You already know the best way to make your household finances more secure: emergency fund, insurance, diversified investment portfolio, marketable skills. But once you're doing those things, you've got a choice to make: Do additional resources go toward more of the same, or do you opt instead to do something different?
I vote for something different.
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