The Best Prepaid Card Is Kaiku Visa® – (Come See Why)

KAIKU_Cards
KAIKU_Cards

I love prepaid debit cards, but hate the fees that are attached to so many of them.  If you've ever used a prepaid card then you know that the fees that come along with just about all of them are frankly, ridiculous.  In some cases, more than you'd pay with a traditional bank account. And for that reason I've stuck with only a chosen few because I'd rather not have fees chip away at my hard earned cash. Recently, I came across Kaiku, a new prepaid card and I am impressed.  I used it for about a month.   I love not only their branding, but I am also impressed with their push to remain clear, upfront and honest about how the card is structured. That's Great And All But What About The Fees? Originally, the fee was $3 per month but this was recently revised and changed by Kaiku.  It is now … [Read more...]

#IwantDRAFT: If You Want Lower Fees + Crowdsourced Insights – You’ll Want To Read This

how_to_invest_in_gold_600x450
how_to_invest_in_gold_600x450

By the time you reach 35 your investor fees could easily top out at $350k on your investment portfolio.  I don't know about you but I'd rather not sacrifice that many coins while working towards the golden years. You may be wondering how do I save money on fees while growing my portfolio?  How are others dealing with this issue? Draft has the solution for that problem. They are the first app of it's find to solve such a unique issue.  Investors needing crowd sourced information in order to make better decisions, ask the right questions of their financial advisors while also saving money on fees.  Overall, this results in more meaningful information about your investment portfolio. What does this mean for you?  Draft helps you make smarter decisions by making the investment … [Read more...]

5 Reasons You Need To Buy Life Insurance

insurance-policy
insurance-policy

Do you have life insurance?  If not, ask yourself why?  Some people don’t buy life insurance because they don’t think they need it and some others don’t think of it as an essential financial product like a bank account or a credit card.  Maybe you don’t have life insurance because you think the premium costs are too high or maybe it’s because you haven’t thought about what happens to your loved ones and family members after you’re gone. Over the last couple of years I have lost my best friend as well as a family member and I can attest to the fact that the entire situation would have been completely different if they didn’t have life insurance.  We didn’t have several thousands of dollars to pay for final expenses, nor did we have the emotional and mental stability to deal with the … [Read more...]

Fixed or Variable Home Loan? That’s Still The Question

first-time-home-buyer-tax-credit-house
first-time-home-buyer-tax-credit-house

If you're looking to finance the purchase of a new home one of the questions on your mind may be Should I get a fixed rate or variable rate home loan plan? The truth is there's no easy answer as both options have their pros and cons.  The best course of action is to read up on the features of both types of home loans and make an informed decision about which one is best for you. The pros of fixed rate home loans Fixed rate home loan plans are just that, they offer a fixed interest rate on your mortgage loan for a predetermined time period such as 1, 3 or 5 years. Stability is a major benefit of fixed rate loans.  You will have consistent monthly mortgage payments and your payments will be completely unaffected by interest rate hikes because your rate is locked in.  This is the … [Read more...]

4 Reasons to Consider Offshore Banking

offshore
offshore

You may think setting up bank accounts in foreign countries is for the rich and famous or people who have something to hide, but the truth is diversifying your banking relationships is an extremely beneficial financial strategy. When looking outside our borders to invest, Americans can benefit from different tax laws, new investment options and foreign exchange. The best part is it can all be done with a name you already know and trust. If you're looking for a way to gain new exposure for your personal assets here are four good reasons to consider an offshore bank. Tax advantages Offshore banking can offer Americans tax advantages they would otherwise not have access to domestically. Of course the possible tax breaks depend on a variety of individual factors such as your … [Read more...]

5 Tips for Paying Off Student Loans

Student
Student

Paying off student loans, especially when the balances often total more than a year’s salary can be an intimidating task. For those who want to get better with their student loan repayment, here are 5 tips to make it happen in less time and with less pain. Get Creative Often times the most overlooked ways to pay off student loans can be the most creative. The internet is filled with inspiring stories of real students paying off their loans. Whether you start a small side business, cram roommates into your apartment, or spend your free time taking surveys online, every little bit of effort can significantly reduce the time you spend paying back the loan, and the interest you have to pay in the process. Avoid Credit Cards Many often try to get zero or low interest rate credit … [Read more...]

She Wasn’t Hired Because Of Her Looks? Elizabeth Bentivegna’s Lesson In Humility And Entitlement

photo_what_not_to_wear_on_job_interview_female_2
photo_what_not_to_wear_on_job_interview_female_2

When dealing with matters of gender equality, there is nothing more egregious than pulling the unsubstantiated "I wasn't hired because I am a woman" card. The issue of women receiving unfair treatment by their male counterparts has been well-documented.  I don't doubt for a minute that women experience scathing discrimination in STEM fields.  However, it isn't limited to just tech - other fields experience this as well.  So many of us know what it feels like to work really hard only to be bypassed by a man with lesser qualifications.  It happens!  But we need to know when to put the sword down, accept our flaws and understand how they impact our ability to get ahead. Elizabeth Bentivegna's story came across my news feed this morning and after reading it I just thought to myself: … [Read more...]

Trade Stock From Your Smart Watch? We’ve Got An App For That!

smartwatch
smartwatch

The Apple Smart Watch launches in a few days.  And among the neat features is the ability to trade stock, open and close positions and them some - from your wrist. Hello game changer! This no doubt brings markets closer to traders than with previous applications.  Why?  This takes mobile trading to a new level. Check out some of the game changing features below: Spread bet, trade CFDs, and buy and sell stocks Get iPhone app notifications on your wrist Open positions and view markets from your watch lists Open, edit and close positions, or see all open positions and your last seven days of account activity Create price alerts for any non-binary and non-option markets Use one-tap login and switch … [Read more...]

Why You Might Consider A Career In Criminal Justice – I Did

college-student-credit-card-marketing
college-student-credit-card-marketing

On popular TV shows like "CSI" and “Criminal Minds," actors play almost clairvoyant crime solvers who track down offenders and lock them up — usually in fewer than 50 minutes. The crimes depicted are usually serious because, of course, drama sells. The reality, though, is that criminal justice involves much more than just solving crimes. Most offenders are not murderers, rapists, and the like who need to be tracked down by mind-hunter squads. Some are really just petty criminals. Many suffer from addictions or mental illness or come from low socio-economic backgrounds, all of which can negatively influence their life decisions.  On the other hand, some criminals flirt with the white color brand of crimes which tend to make national headlines. As a woman who graduated with an … [Read more...]

4 Spring Essentials You Need Desperately

mystery-shopper-hq
mystery-shopper-hq

Although it might seem like just last week that we were pushing the clocks back, springtime is here, and that means there’s shopping to be done.   Whether you enjoy it or not, spring is the easiest season to shop for, with lightweight pieces to mix and match. Here are the four must-have elements any new spring item you buy should have. 1. Pick A Color Design trends this season are all about soft, natural hues that evoke a sense of serenity, according to color experts at the Pantone Color Institute. This can include rich blues, earthy ochres, and warm beiges. Spring is a time of renewal and rejuvenation. To prepare for this time of year, aim for this peaceful color palette with every ensemble. Whether you opt for something quirky, or you prefer a good, old fashioned pair of leather … [Read more...]

Repeat After Me: “I Deserve New Shoes!”

shopaholic
shopaholic

All throughout the month of April, I be publishing articles with tips that will help you balance your checkbook (and emotions to boot)— exclusively on ELLE.com. as their financial coach of the month!  Here's what you missed last week! The best therapy is retail therapy. Show of hands!  Who hasn't indulged in a little retail therapy at some point? I'll be the first to admit that buying myself new clothes, jewelry, or a handbag can serve as a nice pick-me-up when I'm feeling down. (And getting that "fix" is easier than ever these days; if you're not into the hustle and bustle of your local mall, Amazon Prime now offers same-day delivery. Yikes.) But the emotions that cause us to splurge go beyond just the negative ones:  We may spend because we're happy (let's celebrate!), bored … [Read more...]

Want Job Security? Check Out The Booming Jobs In Healthcare

women-job
women-job

Healthcare is a booming industry!  I hate to say it but people will always need help in this area which creates demand.  This means the supply must match and keep up with the demand.  With an aging population, and people living longer than ever, now is a prime time to enter the health care industry. Whether you’re new to the workforce or looking for a career change, studying a field within the area of health or social services is set to put you in good stead for future jobs. In fact, according to a report released earlier in the year by Indeed.com, the job bulletin board, many of the most in-demand jobs for 2015 are actually found in the health care industry. In addition, in the most recent Bureau of Labor Statistics’ ten-year projections for industry growth (covering 2012 to 2022), the … [Read more...]

After Divorce: Build the Financial Future You Want

bankrupt-woman
bankrupt-woman

The divorce has been finalized. The papers are signed, the dust has settled and now you can start thinking about your future. It’s the perfect time to take stock of what you want for the next phase of your life. And as you do this, it’s also a good time to think about your financial future and make sure you’re set up for a secure, rewarding retirement. Why should you think about retirement now, when it may still be many years down the road? A financial plan may seem premature, but the sooner you set it up, the longer you’ll have to build the resources you’ll need later on. You’ll also be taking control of your financial future, maybe for the first time in years – and this can be truly empowering. That’s what one of my clients discovered when she came to me soon after her divorce. A … [Read more...]

5 Best Tech Companies to Work for in 2015

IGotTheJob
IGotTheJob

If you want to love your job and your employer, the tech industry is the place to be. A recent survey by job site GlassDoor showed that tech companies have some of the highest employee satisfaction rates in the workforce. Another GlassDoor survey asked employees to rank the culture and values of their employers, and again, tech came out on top. Technology companies accounted for half of the top-ranked businesses. For those of you looking for the best of the best, here are the five hottest tech companies to work for this year. Google Google remains a highly sought-after employer in the tech industry. Both Fortune and GlassDoor ranked Google the No. 1 company to work for in 2015. It's not hard to understand why techies love Google -- the compensation is nearly unparalleled, the talent pool … [Read more...]

Can Your Marriage Survive Your Spouse’s Bad Credit?

moneymarriage
moneymarriage

When Sally, a nurse practitioner, decided to marry her long time beau, many of her friends warned her about possible credit problems in the future. Her fiance, Larry, was the owner of a small, two-man auto repair shop. While he made an excellent income, a previous divorce had ruined his credit. Many of their mutual friends felt that Larry’s poor credit would drag down Sally’s previously outstanding relationship with creditors. Although many persons believe that getting married means that your respective credit histories are merged, it’s not true. Credit records which are established prior to the nuptials are never shared, inherited or combined. Marriage doesn’t affect your credit score if you take your spouse’s last name. Everyone has their own credit report and scores, even if they live … [Read more...]