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Posted by on in Improving Your Life

The time of year has come when you get to indulge yourself in the spirit of the holidays. It’s time for family dinners, celebrations with friends, and of course, holiday shopping. Still, as gratifying as the holiday season promised to be, if you’re careless with your purchases you could end up putting a huge dent in your wallet. Preserve the holiday spirit by remembering a few tips.

Spending Plan for Presents

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Have you been looking for something fresh and different to spend your Christmas bonus on this year? Too often, the holiday season turns into a hurricane of shopping, and when the new year arrives, you look back and wish you had invested in something of true value. Here are five great opportunities to “pay it forward.”

Volunteer Locally 

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Posted by on in Financial Fitness

The economy is recovering, which is good news, and you may find yourself with enough breathing room to create a new budget and re-examine your spending habits. This is a great time to set new goals and begin putting aside more money for  your future plans and dreams. Or, if you’re still feeling the pressures of the economic downturn, you may want to examine new ways to free up some money each month to help make ends meet. Either way, here are four good ways to save $100 every month.

Give Yourself a Raise and Pay Down Your Debt

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Open enrollment for health insurance under the new federal health care law, the Affordable Care Act, began on October 1 and will continue through March 31, 2014. 

For your protection, as you explore your health care options, please be aware of the following “precautionary” tips:

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If you are a retiree on a fixed income and you have an urgent need for some extra cash right now, the ads offering to give you an "advance" on your pension checks may seem to offer the perfect solution. However, this solution is not as simple or helpful as it may seem.

Unfortunately, too many people have been fooled by these deceptive offers, and as a result they have found themselves in deep debt with less income to live on. The basic fact to keep in mind anytime you see an offer for a pension advance is that you’re looking at a type of payday loan; according to Stuart Rossman, a lawyer with the National Consumer Law Center who spoke to The New York Times about the issue, "The cost of these pension transactions can be astronomically high." 

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