Mistakes http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/1643/all en-US 10 Ways to Salvage a Burnt Meal http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-salvage-a-burnt-meal <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-ways-to-salvage-a-burnt-meal" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_burned_chicken_51534210.jpg" alt="Woman trying to salvage a burned meal" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>My husband likes to joke that his mother cooked by the &quot;smoke alarm method.&quot; I laugh, but not too hard, because people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones. I have burned my share of meals &mdash; I'm also prone to burn some types of things more than others. It happens, but you may not have to waste food and money if you burn, or overcook, your food. Here are 10 ways to salvage your &quot;Cajun-style&quot; food.</p> <h2>1. Rice</h2> <p>Rice came in first on my list, because to this day, sometimes I get distracted and burn the heck out of it.</p> <h3>What to Do</h3> <p>Quickly (before the smell gets bad), scoop out as much rice as you can and put it in a separate bowl. Fill the pan with water (don't just let it sit) so that it's easy to clean up, later.</p> <p>Another method is to turn off the heat, put a slice of white bread over the rice, and re-cover for five minutes. This might help to absorb the bad smell, but you may still have a stuck-on layer on the pot bottom. The rice may still be okay for other uses, such as fried rice. You may also be able to use it in meatballs or soup.</p> <h3>How to Prevent It</h3> <p>If you eat a lot of rice, consider purchasing a rice cooker. Alternatively, check your water to rice ratio. I use two cups of water to one cup of rice. Bring to a boil, reduce to simmer, cover, and cook for 25 minutes. I cheat and check under the lid once in awhile, to make sure it isn't burning. Turn off the heat at 25 minutes, fluff the rice with a fork, cover, and let it sit for five to seven minutes.</p> <h2>2. Overdone Turkey</h2> <p>Haven't we all been there? The table is set beautifully, and everyone is awaiting the grand entrance of the Thanksgiving turkey. You start carving, and oh, no. It's so dry.</p> <h3>What to Do</h3> <p>Reconsider carving at the table. It makes a mess, anyway. If you carve in the kitchen, you have time to do some rescuing, if need be. Ladle some broth over the turkey pieces; it will soak in. Another tactic is to brush the pieces with a little melted butter. Or, just 'fess up, and tell folks they'll need a <em>lot</em> of gravy. Fortunately, chopped turkey (even if it's dry) will be fine in creamy casseroles, or enchiladas.</p> <h3>How to Prevent It</h3> <p>Before you start cooking your turkey, make sure it's thawed. Also, for beginners, buy the brand with the pop-up button, or use a turkey cooking bag.</p> <h2>3. No-Longer-Rare Roast</h2> <p>There you were, making a nice roast for Sunday dinner, and the phone rang. You forgot about that roast, and now it's toast.</p> <h3>What to Do</h3> <p>Shift gears. You can still probably use some of it. My mother made <a href="http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/traditional_roast_beef_hash/">roast beef hash</a> a lot when I was a kid, and now I suspect I know why. Also, try tossing it, along with veggies, into a stir-fry, or making fried rice.</p> <h3>How to Prevent It</h3> <p>A good meat thermometer is a wonderful thing.</p> <h2>4. Burned Chicken</h2> <p>Visions of a picture-perfect cookout go right out of your head when flames turn the chicken black, right?</p> <h3>What to Do</h3> <p>If it has skin on, remove the skin, and finish baking it in the oven. You may also be able to cut the burned parts off and chop up the meat. Having a salad with the picnic? Toss the remaining meat into that.</p> <h3>How to Prevent It</h3> <p>If you really must keep the skin on (I know, it's so tasty), trim the skin so that it doesn't hang down and catch on fire. Make sure you brush the grill with oil before heating it, so that it doesn't stick and burn. Don't put the sauce on until the chicken is almost done, because any sugars in the sauce may cause the chicken to burn.</p> <h2>5. Chocolate</h2> <p>It's a pretty sickening feeling to burn chocolate while attempting to melt it. I mean come on, it's chocolate. Ouch.</p> <h3>What to Do</h3> <p>First, get it away from the heat. If you have any more chocolate around, chop it, add it, and stir. That will stop it from melting any further. Still lumpy? Try adding a little vegetable oil or shortening to the chocolate and stir it. If it still cannot be saved, just let it cool, chop it up, and toss it into cookies.</p> <h3>How to Prevent It</h3> <p>Rather than melting it on the stove, try short bursts in the microwave. Start at one minute, and stir. Try another 20 seconds, stir, and check. If it still has not melted, give it 15 seconds more and stir. If you own a double boiler, that's also a safer method than just melting on the stovetop.</p> <h2>6. Very Well-Done Vegetables</h2> <p>The veggies were steaming along nicely, and you got a phone call. The water evaporated in the pan. Oops.</p> <h3>What to Do</h3> <p>Scrape out what you can. There is still hope! One idea is to add grated Parmesan and a little cream to the leftover vegetables. This might actually be yummier than the original healthy steamed vegetables. Or, you can puree them with a little butter, and use as a thick sauce. Lastly, puree, add some stock, and call it soup.</p> <p>How to Prevent It</p> <p>Set the timer, or turn off the stove if you are distracted.</p> <h2>7. Butter</h2> <p>There you were, just melting butter to make a sauce, and... It went from melted to muddy-brown.</p> <h3>What to Do</h3> <p>Grab a coffee filter and a bowl. Strain the butter through the filter. Now you have delicious, nutty, brown butter. Add some chopped herbs, and pretend you meant to do that. Browned butter makes a great sauce.</p> <h3>How to Prevent It</h3> <p>Use low heat to melt butter, and don't leave the stove. If you get distracted, turn off the burner.</p> <h2>8. Pie Crust</h2> <p>You were feeling like Betty Crocker there, for a while, until you burned your pie crust. All that work, down the drain? Nope.</p> <h3>What to Do</h3> <p>If it's just a little brown, who cares? It looks better than <em>underbaked</em>. However, if it's really obvious, see if you can cut up your pie and put it onto a serving plate minus the outer crust. If it's burned beyond being edible, remove the whole top and make a crumb topping (combine one cup flour, &frac12; cup butter, and &frac12; cup brown sugar, mix together, and sprinkle over top). Put it back into the oven at 425 and bake until brown.</p> <h3>How to Prevent It</h3> <p>Next time, wrap foil around the edges of the pie, removing just for the last 15 minutes of baking. Also, bake on the bottom rack of your oven, not the top.</p> <h2>9. Burnt Bacon</h2> <p>It happens quickly. You aren't alone.</p> <h3>What to Do</h3> <p>It's still edible. Let it drain, crumble it up, and sprinkle over salads, soups, or onto scrambled eggs.</p> <h3>How to Prevent It</h3> <p>Try <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AALN13mQhRw">cooking bacon in the oven</a>, which is easy and makes less mess, too. Don't forget to set the timer!</p> <h2>10. Crispy Lasagna</h2> <p>My grandmother always burned the top of her lasagna, so I actually learned to like it that way. But that's probably a unique thing.</p> <h3>What to Do</h3> <p>If the top is black and crunchy, peel back a layer. Add more sauce and cheese, and return to the oven just to brown it up.</p> <h3>How to Prevent It</h3> <p>Before you pop it into the oven, cover it with foil. Halfway through baking, remove the foil.</p> <p>If it's overdone, don't throw it out! You may be able to save some food <em>and</em> some money.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/marla-walters">Marla Walters</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-salvage-a-burnt-meal">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-delicious-ways-to-save-stale-bread">10 Delicious Ways to Save Stale Bread</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/17-uses-for-stale-bread">17 Uses for Stale Bread</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-perfectly-respectable-uses-for-instant-mashed-potatoes">5 Perfectly Respectable Uses for Instant Mashed Potatoes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/frugal-gluten-free-living-flour-tortillas-that-taste-great">Frugal Gluten-Free Living: Flour Tortillas that Taste Great!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tasty-treats-to-make-with-mulberries">Tasty Treats to Make With Mulberries</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink burned food Cooking food waste Mistakes recipes repurposing salvaging Tue, 23 Aug 2016 09:30:29 +0000 Marla Walters 1775892 at http://www.wisebread.com The 10 Most Common Financial Aid Mistakes — And How To Avoid Them http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-most-common-financial-aid-mistakes-and-how-to-avoid-them <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-10-most-common-financial-aid-mistakes-and-how-to-avoid-them" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/student_loan_debt_000080203665.jpg" alt="Learning how to avoid common financial aid mistakes" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>For many students, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is crucial to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-easy-ways-to-avoid-student-loan-debt">making college affordable</a>. While the application process can be greatly rewarding, that doesn't mean it's easy. FAFSA is riddled with confusing acronyms and financial lingo. And getting any money out of it is contingent on meeting deadlines and reporting dollar amounts precisely. Errors can greatly reduce or eliminate your financial aid award. Read on for our roundup of the most common FAFSA flubs &mdash; and our tips for avoiding them.</p> <h2>1. Missing Deadlines</h2> <p>The price of missing the FAFSA application deadline can be steep. So don't fall victim to this time management failure. Stay on top of deadlines by creating a due date calendar. Vow to review it daily. For each deadline item, create a list of tasks you'll need to complete to meet the due date. Estimate how much time each of these tasks will take you to finish. Add this information to your deadline calendar and hold yourself accountable.</p> <h2>2. Procrastinating</h2> <p>This year the FAFSA form will be made available on October 1. That's a full <em>three months earlier than usual</em>. Despite the early bird form availability, it will serve you best to fill out the FAFSA and submit it as soon as possible. Many folks wait until after they file their taxes to fill out and submit the FAFSA, and in some cases that can be too late. At least nine states award financial aid on a <a href="https://www.edvisors.com/blog/switch-to-prior-prior-tax-data-for-fafsa-09-2015/">first come, first served</a> basis &mdash; until the money runs out. Even if you beat the official deadline, waiting to file could potentially cost you everything.</p> <h2>3. Messing Up Numbers</h2> <p>While it's important to fill out the FAFSA in a timely manner, it's equally important that you fill it out correctly. Double-check to make sure the numbers you enter onto the FAFSA form are correct and in the right field. One faulty keyboard stroke could cost you thousands of dollars.</p> <h2>3. Leaving a Field Blank</h2> <p>If the answer is zero, write zero. Leaving a field blank can prompt the processor of your application to assume that you failed to answer the question. It can also lead to grave miscalculations and processing delays. So before you submit your application, double-check that all fields are filled in.</p> <h2>4. Not Including Stepparents</h2> <p>The FAFSA can be filed by just one parent. But if this parent is remarried, the financial information for that spouse &mdash; the student's stepparent &mdash; must also be reported. Depending on that stepparent's income and assets, a student's eligibility for need-based financial aid can fluctuate greatly.</p> <h2>5. Not Including Stepchildren on an Application</h2> <p>To soften the blow of a well-off stepparent, stepchildren may be included on the FAFSA application, as well. By including stepchildren, you'll make adjustments to the household size and expected family contribution portions of the form, thereby creating opportunity for greater need-based aid.</p> <h2>6. Filing the Wrong Form</h2> <p>At any given time, there are two versions of the FAFSA that could be filed: The FAFSA for the <em>current </em>academic year, and the FAFSA for the <em>upcoming </em>academic year. The majority of applicants &mdash; those seeking to attend school in the upcoming school year &mdash; will want to file the latter. Be sure that you've got the right form for your desired college enrollment date.</p> <h2>7. Not Using the Right Website</h2> <p>The FAFSA is free to fill out and submit on <a href="https://fafsa.ed.gov/">fafsa.ed.gov</a>. But beware: There are imposter sites out there. If you are asked for your credit card information, you're not on the official government site.</p> <h2>8. Including Retirement Info</h2> <p>Retirement info, such as your 401K or IRA assets, should never be included on the FAFSA. Only non-retirement financial data is required. Mistakenly including retirement funds on the form could reduce your chances of winning need-based aid, so be sure to avoid this mistake.</p> <h2>9. Entering the Wrong SSN</h2> <p>Most of us are rarely called upon to state our Social Security numbers, which could be why so many folks misstate these numbers on the FAFSA. Double-check SSN numbers before submitting the form, and make sure you have the correct number matched to the right family member.</p> <h2>10. Failing to Seek Help</h2> <p>Successful completion of the FAFSA form is no easy task. If you're flustered, seek help. There's a <a href="https://studentaidhelp.ed.gov/app/home/site/fafsa">FAFSA hotline</a> available to help you navigate the process as well as free online resources, such as the <a href="https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/fafsa/estimate">FAFSA calculator</a>.</p> <p><em>Did you find the FAFSA process confusing?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/brittany-lyte">Brittany Lyte</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-most-common-financial-aid-mistakes-and-how-to-avoid-them">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-if-you-didnt-save-for-your-childs-college">What to Do If You Didn&#039;t Save for Your Child&#039;s College</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-moves-to-make-the-moment-you-graduate">5 Money Moves to Make the Moment You Graduate</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-sobering-facts-about-student-loan-debt">5 Sobering Facts About Student Loan Debt</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-better-way-to-rank-americas-colleges">A Better Way to Rank America&#039;s Colleges</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-get-trapped-by-these-higher-education-scams">Don&#039;t Get Trapped by These Higher Education Scams</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Education & Training applications college FAFSA federal student aid financial aid Mistakes student loans Mon, 23 May 2016 09:30:26 +0000 Brittany Lyte 1714480 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Tax Mistakes Millennials Make http://www.wisebread.com/8-tax-mistakes-millennials-make <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-tax-mistakes-millennials-make" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_reading_stressed_000058019024.jpg" alt="Millennial man making common tax mistakes" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Claiming deductions and organizing receipts isn't fun for anyone &mdash; least of whom Millennials, who might be filing taxes for the first time or experiencing changes in their finances.</p> <p>And while making mistakes might at times be unavoidable, it's not a legitimate defense if the tax man comes knocking. Consider these eight common errors Millennials make when preparing and filing taxes.</p> <h2>1. Not Hiring a Tax Professional (If You Need One)</h2> <p>Not everyone needs a CPA or other tax professional. In fact, if your taxes are straightforward, you can easily file them yourself for free, or use low-cost services such as TurboTax. But not hiring a CPA is one of the biggest mistakes you can make if your taxes are complicated. Accounting professionals are all too familiar with legal loopholes, tax credits, and qualifiable exemptions, and they will work on your behalf to understand your particular situation and get you the maximum return.</p> <p>A simple rule of thumb: If your taxes seem too challenging to file on your own, they probably are. Seek expert guidance before you make costly mistakes.</p> <h2>2. Spending Tax Refunds</h2> <p>Before most people have received their tax refund, they've already decided how they're going to spend it. Most often it's on a depreciating asset like a car, clothes, or electronics. If tax season is exciting to you for this reason, you definitely should not be spending your refund. I know this not what people want to hear, but you should find more financially constructive uses for this money &mdash; such as investing, tackling debt, or making truly necessary purchases. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-smart-things-to-do-with-your-tax-refund?ref=seealso">8 Smart Things to Do With Your Tax Refund</a>)</p> <h2>3. Allowing High-Interest Debt to Linger</h2> <p>If you're carrying high-interest debt on anything &mdash; including car loans, student loans, or a mortgage &mdash; you may want to use your annual tax refund to knock it out fast. This just depends on your personal situation. First, see if you qualify for ways to reduce your interest rate and/or monthly payments, such as mortgage refinancing, a student loan forgiveness program or income-sensitive repayment. If you can't, paying the debt off quickly might make sense. Put your refund in a savings account, divide it by 12, and take small monthly withdrawals of this amount to include with your regular payments each month. Use this strategy for any debt you wish to repay early. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-times-student-loan-refinancing-can-save-you-big?ref=seealso">4 Times Student Loan Refinancing Can Save You Big</a>)</p> <h2>4. Not Using Retirement Accounts to Lower Your Tax Bracket</h2> <p>Taxes are by far one of the biggest obstacles normal people face when trying to build wealth. If you don't believe me, here's a simple example. If $1 invested doubled every year for 20 years, it would end up being worth $1,048,576. If the same $1 invested doubled every year for 20 years and was subject to a 28% tax bracket, it would be worth a modest $51,353. Now you see the importance of investing to the max inside of tax-advantaged accounts such as 401Ks and 403Bs in order to reduce your tax bracket.</p> <h2>5. Forgetting to Claim Capital Losses</h2> <p>Whether you invest inside of your retirement accounts, or trade on investing platforms such as E*TRADE, if your capital losses offset your capital gains the difference can be claimed as a tax deduction. Let's say you decided to trade penny stocks &mdash; and I'm not saying penny stocks are necessarily a bad investment, but let's say this year you lost $2,000 with no other capital gains from other investments. Your $2,000 loss on risky stocks can be deducted from your other income. In fact, you can deduct up to $3,000 of Capital losses in any tax year. Anything over $3,000 can carryover to the following tax year.</p> <h2>6. Failing to Claim Student Loan or Mortgage Interest Payments</h2> <p>Mortgage and student loan interest payments are generally tax deductible, within certain limits. If you qualify for these deductions, don't forget to claim them. It could otherwise cost you thousands of dollars at tax time.</p> <h2>7. Not Using an FSA for Childcare Costs</h2> <p>If your employer offers an FSA, make sure to take advantage of it. The annual contribution limit to <a href="https://www.healthcare.gov/flexible-spending-accounts/">Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA)</a> is $2,550, and money saved inside a FSA is tax-advantaged and can be used for health-related costs and dependent care expenses. Any money saved inside your FSA is taken from your pre-tax income, reducing your annual income by the subsequent amount. However, there are time limits on using FSA funds so, be careful not to lose the money you've saved. In <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-spend-your-last-minute-health-care-fsa-funds">8 Ways to Spend Your Last-Minute Health Care FSA Funds</a>, I explain how to avoid losing your hard-earned dollars.</p> <h2>8. Not Claiming the Cost of Moving</h2> <p>Millennials move more than any other group. And the majority of them move due to career opportunities. Well, did you know that if you change residences due to work, you can claim the expense of your move as a tax deduction? The IRS states that if you meet certain requirements, the cost of your <a href="https://www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc455.html">work-related move</a> may be tax-deductible.</p> <p><em>Have you made any of these tax-time mistakes?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/qiana-chavaia">Qiana Chavaia</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-tax-mistakes-millennials-make">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-tax-tricks-to-try-if-youre-stuck-with-student-loans">8 Tax Tricks to Try if You&#039;re Stuck With Student Loans</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-student-loans-impact-your-taxes">4 Ways Student Loans Impact Your Taxes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-facts-millennials-should-know-about-retirement-planning">5 Facts Millennials Should Know About Retirement Planning</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-things-successful-30-somethings-do">9 Things Successful 30-Somethings Do</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-tax-deductions-new-homeowners-shouldnt-skip">4 Tax Deductions New Homeowners Shouldn&#039;t Skip</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Taxes capital losses debt interest millennials Mistakes refunds tax deductions Thu, 03 Mar 2016 11:30:07 +0000 Qiana Chavaia 1665767 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Dumb IRA Mistakes Even Smart People Make http://www.wisebread.com/5-dumb-ira-mistakes-even-smart-people-make <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-dumb-ira-mistakes-even-smart-people-make" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/000062076804.jpg" alt="Smart people making dumb IRA mistakes" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You know how important it is to save for your retirement. So to help you reach your financial goals, you've set up an IRA.</p> <p>Setting up and contributing to an IRA is a good first step. But even financially savvy people make key mistakes when contributing to IRAs &mdash; mistakes that can cost them plenty of retirement dollars.</p> <p>The good news? It's actually fairly easy to avoid these errors. Craig Howell, vice president of business development at San Francisco's Ubiquity Retirement + Savings, said that consumers can do so with just a bit of education.</p> <p>&quot;It doesn't take much to educate yourself on how IRAs work,&quot; Howell said. &quot;You do have to pay attention to your IRAs. A lot of people set them up and then ignore them. But if you do just a bit of research, you can avoid making mistakes with that money.&quot;</p> <p>Here are the most common mistakes even smart people make when it comes to building the savings in their IRAs. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-important-things-to-know-about-your-401k-and-ira-in-2016">5 Important Things to Know About Your 401K and IRA in 2016</a>)</p> <h2>1. Not Contributing Enough</h2> <p>The more money you deposit in your IRA, the more money you'll have to help fund a happy retirement. That seems obvious. But many people, even financially savvy ones, simply use their IRAs as a place to stash money, not as a place to grow it.</p> <p>This is because many people first fund their IRAs from dollars they roll over from an employer-sponsored 401K when they change jobs. They take that money, deposit it in an IRA, and ignore it. Sure, depending on the economy, these dollars will slowly grow. But they won't grow nearly as fast as they would have if their owners were making regular contributions.</p> <p>And this is far from an uncommon mistake.</p> <p>&quot;I believe that the number one mistake that people make is not contributing to their IRAs at all,&quot; said Joe Roseman, managing partner at retirement firm O'Dell, Winkfield, Roseman &amp; Shipp in Charlotte, North Carolina. &quot;That is easily the number one mistake.&quot;</p> <p>A 2015 study by the Employee Benefit Research Institute found that only 7% of investors contributed to their traditional IRA accounts in 2013. Investors who owned Roth IRAs did a bit better, with 26% contributing in 2013.</p> <h2>2. Taking the Silo Approach</h2> <p>Jim Poolman, executive director of the Indexed Annuity Leadership Council and former insurance commissioner of North Dakota, said that too many investors never consider how their IRAs fit into their overall retirement plans.</p> <p>Of course, too many people never calculate how much they'll need to save for their retirements in the first place. So when they invest dollars in an IRA, they do it in a haphazard way, contributing when they are fortunate enough to have some extra money. A better approach is to contribute on a regular schedule that is based on all the savings vehicles you are using to fund your retirement, Poolman said. For example, if you contribute to an employer-sponsored 401K every pay period, consider doing the same for your IRA. Automatic account transfers from savings or checking balances can help you achieve this.</p> <p>&quot;It is important to look at your full retirement plan and how your investment vehicles fit in,&quot; Poolman said. &quot;Evaluate all of your investments together so you have a proper balance to meet your time and investment objectives. Some people look at the different vehicles like an IRA in a silo, and don't consider it in the entire financial or retirement plan.&quot;</p> <h2>3. Forgetting Their Required Minimum Distributions</h2> <p>IRAs come with generous tax breaks &mdash; but don't think you're getting these for free. The federal government requires that when you turn 70-and-a-half you begin taking regular withdrawals from your traditional IRAs, withdrawals on which you will have to pay taxes. (If you have a Roth IRA, you won't have to do this.)</p> <p>How much you'll have to withdraw each year depends on how much money you've saved in your IRA. If you forget to make these withdrawals, or if you don't take ones that are large enough, the government will levy a 50% penalty against you. If you were supposed to withdraw $5,000, not only will you have to catch up with that withdrawal &mdash; paying taxes on it &mdash; you'll also have to pay a penalty of $2,500.</p> <p>&quot;Uncle Sam, being the nice gentleman that he is, at some point if he gives you something, he also takes it away from you,&quot; Roseman said. &quot;If you don't take your required minimum distribution, he is going to hit you with a very nasty penalty.&quot;</p> <h2>4. The Rollover Mistake</h2> <p>Say you want to move the dollars in your current IRA to a new one. Or maybe you've changed jobs and you want to take the money from your old 401K account and deposit it in an IRA. You can roll those funds over.</p> <p>In a rollover, you'll receive a check for the amount of money in the retirement account you are closing. You then use that money to start a new IRA. But there is a catch: If you don't deposit your dollars into a new account within 60 days, the IRS will consider that money as income, which means you'll have to pay taxes on it.</p> <p>And if you are under the age of 59-and-a-half when you do this, you'll also be hit with a 10% penalty. If you withdrew $10,000 and failed to move it into a new IRA within 60 days, you'd have to pay a penalty of $1,000.</p> <p>Also, you can only do one rollover a year. A better choice? Sign up for a direct transfer of your dollars from one retirement savings vehicle to your new one. Doing so will send your money directly to your new IRA without you ever receiving a check first. It's a way to eliminate this extra step and make sure that you don't accidentally trigger the 60-day penalty. You can also make unlimited direct transfers in a year.</p> <h2>5. The Wrong Beneficiary</h2> <p>When you die, you want the money left in your IRA to go to the right beneficiary. But Roseman said that too many investors forget to update their IRA's beneficiaries when their lives change.</p> <p>This most often happens in cases of divorce, he said. Divorced or remarried investors often forget to change their beneficiary forms. Their IRA dollars are still scheduled to go to their ex-spouses, not their current ones, after they die.</p> <p>&quot;You are dead and your current spouse is counting on the $300,000 in your IRA,&quot; Roseman said. &quot;But the beneficiary designation still says that this money goes to the ex. There have been many court cases saying that the beneficiary designation rules. It overrules a trust agreement and it overrules a will. That is a huge mistake that investors make. Any time there is a change in their lives, people need to re-do those beneficiary forms.&quot;</p> <p><em>Are you making any of these common IRA errors?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-dumb-ira-mistakes-even-smart-people-make">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/401k-or-ira-you-need-both">401K or IRA? You Need Both</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-important-things-to-know-about-your-401k-and-ira-in-2016">5 Important Things to Know About Your 401K and IRA in 2016</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/left-a-job-do-a-rollover">Left a job? Do a rollover.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-max-out-your-ira-contributions-by-april-15th">7 Ways to Max Out Your IRA Contributions by April 15th</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-signs-you-arent-saving-enough-for-retirement">10 Signs You Aren&#039;t Saving Enough for Retirement</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Retirement beneficiaries contributions IRA Mistakes rollovers saving money Mon, 15 Feb 2016 11:30:04 +0000 Dan Rafter 1654106 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Money Mistakes Everyone Makes When Buying Their First Car http://www.wisebread.com/7-money-mistakes-everyone-makes-when-buying-their-first-car <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-money-mistakes-everyone-makes-when-buying-their-first-car" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_new_car_000023883579.jpg" alt="Woman making money mistakes everyone makes with their first car" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's easy to make money mistakes anytime you buy a car &mdash; but your first car is especially risky. Here are some expensive first-time car buying mistakes and how to avoid them.</p> <h2>1. Buying the Wrong Kind of Car</h2> <p>When shopping for your first car, it's easy to overlook how you're going to actually use it in the long term. You might think about picking up friends to go out, but overlook routine chores such as hauling groceries home. Your car needs can change rapidly. You don't want a two-seater if your family could grow to three or more within a couple short years. The best way to save money on car expenses is to drive the same car for many years, so choose wisely!</p> <h2>2. Buying a Car With Poor Fuel Economy</h2> <p>If you are buying your first car, you probably aren't used to experiencing pain at the pump, and consequently you may not consider the cost of keeping gas in a pick-up truck. With the current low gas prices, you may not feel that fuel economy is a major consideration &mdash; but don't fall for this expensive mistake. If you choose a car that gets half the fuel economy, you'll pay twice as much for gas &mdash; no matter what happens to the price of gas. And just because gas prices are low today doesn't mean they'll stay low forever. If you buy a fuel hog and gas prices go up, it could seriously impact the resale value of your vehicle down the road.</p> <h2>3. Surprise Maintenance Required</h2> <p>Used cars are much less expensive to buy than new, and are a great choice for a first car. But sometimes a used vehicle can have expensive problems that are not obvious until after you have driven off in it. Never buy a vehicle with a check engine light on unless you understand what maintenance is required to resolve the issue. The problems indicated by a check engine light can cost only a few dollars to repair &mdash; such as replacing the gas cap &mdash; or thousands. The only way to know is to get the car checked out by a mechanic who can read the diagnostic codes, investigate the trouble, and provide an estimate for repairs.</p> <p>Even if the check engine light is not on, I recommend having any used vehicle checked over by a mechanic before you buy it. Getting a vehicle inspection can be a bit inconvenient and costs around $50, but you could save thousands by avoiding a car with expensive maintenance needs. You can also use the inspection report as a bargaining tool to get a better price. Do you really want to risk buying a used car without knowing what could be wrong with it?</p> <h2>4. Buying to Impress</h2> <p>Start your car search by thinking of the things you need a car to do. It needs to be reliable, get you to where you are going, and hold the things you need to haul. That's pretty much it. There are all kinds of options and upgrades available, but these do not change the basic functionality of a car.</p> <p>It is easy to think that a nice car will impress people and make your life better, but any reliable car provides the same basic utility. Try to approach buying a car as you would buying a tool, and don't let emotion overcome your judgment about what a car can do for you.</p> <h2>5. Thinking of a Vehicle as an Investment</h2> <p>Just because cars are expensive doesn't mean they are an investment. Almost any car you buy will drop significantly in value after only a few years. Dealers may encourage you to buy a more expensive car so it will have better resale value later. It is true that certain options such as automatic transmission and all-wheel drive improve resale value, but other options that add thousands of dollars to you car cost may bring only a few hundred dollars of resale value years later. Buying a car is an expense, not an investment. Try to minimize how much you need to spend to obtain safe, reliable transportation.</p> <h2>6. Not Negotiating on Price</h2> <p>Price negotiation can be a new concept for first-time car buyers. Car prices are not like prices for other items for sale &mdash; the sticker price is only a suggestion, and the seller is almost always ready to sell it for less. If you pay full asking price for a car, you are likely paying hundreds, or even thousands, more than you need to pay. With a few minutes of research on the Internet, you can arm yourself with the information you need to confidently negotiate a lower price. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/speed-past-car-debt-with-this-simple-timing-trick">Speed Past Car Debt With This Simple Timing Trick</a>)</p> <h2>7. Getting Tricked Into Dealer Financing</h2> <p>At the end of the car buying process, there is one more chance to make a costly mistake &mdash; dealer financing. The dealer may try to convince first-time car buyers that it will be difficult for them to get financing at all. After taking down some information and working some magic, they will appear with a financing offer and say that you were lucky to qualify. Just sign and the car is yours &mdash; along with its big monthly payments. The problem is that the interest rate from the dealer may be substantially higher than the rate you could get elsewhere. Avoid this trap by getting prequalified for financing at an online lender, credit union, or bank before you go car shopping. This way, you will know how much you can borrow and find a good interest rate before you fall in love with the car.</p> <p><em>What mistakes did you make when buying your first car?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dr-penny-pincher">Dr Penny Pincher</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-money-mistakes-everyone-makes-when-buying-their-first-car">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-you-need-to-know-before-leasing-a-car">What You Need to Know Before Leasing a Car</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-it-still-smart-to-buy-an-electric-car-while-gas-prices-are-low">Is It Still Smart to Buy an Electric Car While Gas Prices Are Low?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-wisebread-helped-me-get-45mpg-out-of-my-28mpg-car">How Wisebread helped me get 45mpg out of my 28mpg car.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-reasons-why-you-should-never-buy-a-new-car">3 Reasons Why You Should Never Buy a New Car</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-money-moves-to-make-the-moment-you-decide-to-buy-a-car">6 Money Moves to Make the Moment You Decide to Buy a Car</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation financing fuel economy gas prices maintenance Mistakes negotiating new cars Tue, 02 Feb 2016 10:00:09 +0000 Dr Penny Pincher 1647337 at http://www.wisebread.com Should You Always Dispute Mistakes on Your Credit Report? http://www.wisebread.com/should-you-always-dispute-mistakes-on-your-credit-report <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/should-you-always-dispute-mistakes-on-your-credit-report" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_phone-bills_000062937842.jpg" alt="Woman disputing credit mistakes on credit report" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Does your credit score seem too low? Mistakes on your three credit reports might be to blame.</p> <p>TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax each maintain a credit report listing your open credit accounts, your payment history, and any negative judgments, such as a recent bankruptcy or foreclosure. Unfortunately, these reports aren't always perfect. They might contain mistakes that could cause your credit score to plummet by 100 points or more. Yes, disputing a mistake on your credit report will take time on your part. But financial experts say that this time is well spent. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-things-you-dont-know-about-your-credit-report-but-should">13 Things You Don't Know About Your Credit Report &mdash; But Should</a>)</p> <p>&quot;The question I would ask is, 'Why wouldn't you dispute a claim that was inaccurate?'&quot; said Dr. Billie Blair, president and chief executive officer of management consulting firm Change Strategists, Inc. &quot;About once a month on our business credit card account there's an inaccuracy. We always call the credit company &mdash; they put it in dispute and resolve the issue.&quot;</p> <h2>Correct Mistakes With the Bureau and the Creditor</h2> <p>Jared Blank, chief marketing officer of deal site DealNews, agrees. He recommends that consumers correct the information in their credit reports in two ways.</p> <p>First, they should file disputes online with each credit bureau that lists incorrect information. Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion now offer consumers the chance to fix errors through links on their websites. Once consumers contact the bureaus, they will then contact the financial institution &mdash; usually a credit card company, auto lender, bank or mortgage lender &mdash; that initially provided them with the incorrect information.</p> <p>Blank also recommends that consumers directly contact the financial institutions that provided Experian, Equifax, or TransUnion with the incorrect information. This takes a bit more work: You'll usually have to provide a written letter outlining the mistake. For instance, if your credit card provider mistakenly told Equifax that you paid your bill late twice last year, you can write to the provider to explain that you've never made a single late payment.</p> <p>&quot;This will cut out the back-and-forth between the credit bureau and the company that provided the wrong information,&quot; Blank said. &quot;If it was me, I would contact both the credit bureau and the company providing the misinformation.&quot;</p> <h2>Dispute It in Writing</h2> <p>Howard Dvorkin, the author of financial books <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0470641622/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=0470641622&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=GGKPI2BCWX7HWYJV">Credit Hell: How to Dig Out of Debt</a> and <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1118731492/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=1118731492&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=D2LI66L246SXJS55">Power Up: Taking Charge of Your Financial Destiny</a>, says that consumers should order annual copies of each of their credit reports from AnnualCreditReport.com. You are entitled to one free copy of each your three credit reports per year, so take advantage of this.</p> <p>Once you have your report, study it carefully for errors. Mistakes aren't as rare as you might think. A study by the Federal Trade Commission in 2013 found that one in five consumers have errors on their credit reports.</p> <p>Dvorkin recommends that consumers always correct their mistakes with written letters that they send to both the credit bureaus listing the errors, and to the financial institutions that have provided the mistaken information.</p> <p>&quot;Write a good old-fashioned letter detailing your dispute,&quot; he said. &quot;Don't use the credit bureaus' online dispute form, because you simply can't possibly fit all the necessary details in the space they give you. Using those forms simply puts you at a disadvantage from the start.&quot;</p> <p>You'll need to send separate letters for each mistake that you are disputing. If you find the same mistake on more than one of your credit reports, you'll need to send separate letters detailing the mistake to each bureau listing it. You should then send letters to the bank, mortgage lender, auto lender, or other financial institution that provided the incorrect information.</p> <p>Dvorkin recommends that you send these letters by certified mail, and that you check &quot;return receipt requested&quot; so that you'll have proof that someone received your letters. You should also include copies of any documents that support your dispute, such as copies of checks that you mailed to your credit card provider or mortgage lender showing that you did, indeed, make a payment on time.</p> <h2>The Process Is Surprisingly Fast</h2> <p>Rod Griffin, director of public information for Experian, said that federal law gives the credit bureaus 30 days to resolve a dispute. That requirement, though, is a holdover from the days when the majority of dispute communication took place through snail mail. Today, it generally takes Experian 10 to 14 business days to resolve disputes, Griffin said. Often, it will take as few as two to three days.</p> <p>Once a dispute is resolved, the financial institution that provided Experian with the information in question will contact the credit bureau. Griffin said that the institution will either tell Experian to remove the information from the consumer's credit report, update it with new details or, if the lender or bank disagrees with the dispute, to leave the information untouched.</p> <p>Consumers who are not satisfied with these initial results will then have to contact the lender or bank directly to continue the dispute, Griffin said.</p> <p>&quot;Any time you see a mistake or find information that shouldn't be there, you should dispute it,&quot; Griffin said. &quot;The goal is to have the report be 100% accurate. That's what really benefits consumers and businesses. Our objective is to have information that is accurate.&quot;</p> <p><em>Have you ever successfully disputed a mistake on a credit report?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/should-you-always-dispute-mistakes-on-your-credit-report">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/your-bad-credit-isnt-the-end-of-the-world">Your Bad Credit Isn&#039;t the End of the World</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-money-goals-you-can-still-reach-by-2017">13 Money Goals You Can Still Reach by 2017</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-best-money-management-tips-from-john-oliver">7 Best Money Management Tips From John Oliver</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-life-is-amazing-with-an-800-credit-score">5 Ways Life Is Amazing With an 800 Credit Score</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/you-missed-a-student-loan-payment-now-what">You Missed a Student Loan Payment. Now What?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance credit reports credit score disputes Mistakes reporting Wed, 23 Dec 2015 14:00:04 +0000 Dan Rafter 1623780 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Money Fears and How to Squash Them http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-fears-and-how-to-squash-them <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-money-fears-and-how-to-squash-them" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/nervous_man_000050240320.jpg" alt="Man with money fears learning how to squash them" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Remember when you were afraid of the bogeyman? We all knew he wasn't real, but that didn't stop our fears. For most of us, that same bogeyman is alive in our finances. If you've had a bad month, or even a bad year or two, it's really easy to let fear take over.</p> <p>Below are five irrational (although they might feel very real for you) money fears and some simple solutions to squash them.</p> <h2>1. I Lost My Job; I'm Never Going to Make It!</h2> <p>Even if you have the most &quot;perfect&quot; job and your boss loves you, there is always a chance that you could lose it. The company could have a bad year and need to lay off staff. They might downsize. Or, maybe they get bought out and decide they don't need you on board.</p> <h3>Squash It</h3> <p>Preparation is key to squashing this money fear, which means preparing <em>before</em> you lose the job. Make sure you button up your emergency fund savings with at least three to six months of your monthly expenses, and keep it in a high-yield savings account (<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/discover-bank-review-you-know-the-card-but-what-about-the-bank">Discover Online Savings</a> or <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/capital-one-360-review">Capital One 360</a>). As the name implies, an emergency fund will help you breeze into temporary unemployment and keep you from having to turn to your credit cards to pay your monthly expenses.</p> <h2>2. My 401K Lost 5%, I'll Never Be Able to Retire!</h2> <p>For those who had money in a 401K during 2008 and 2009, losing just 5% would have seemed like a miracle. Depending on their exposure, retirement investors lost 25%&ndash;30% (or more) of their account values in a really short period of time. Now that's a bad day! A 401K, like any investment, is going to have good times and not-so-good times.</p> <h3>Squash It</h3> <p>The best way to squash this fear of never being able to retire is to commit to a monthly investment amount (called dollar-cost-averaging), rebalance your funds annually, and for heaven's sake, don't look at your account every day. With dollar-cost-averaging you'll be buying some funds during the good days, and some on the not-so-good days &mdash; but the objective is that it evens out and keeps you marching towards your retirement goals.</p> <h2>3. My Spouse-to-Be Makes More Than Me &mdash; It's Not Fair!</h2> <p>Rarely do you find a relationship where both people make exactly the same amount of money. When you pile getting married on top of that all, it can be a real recipe for disaster.</p> <h3>Squash It</h3> <p>Having open communication with your future spouse is key before you get married. Come up with a game plan together about how you will allocate your funds for things like savings, paying off debt, and the goals you are trying to achieve. Another way to squash this fear is to create two separate &quot;fun&quot; funds. In each fund, put the same amount of money each month, so each person can spend their money as they wish with no questions from the other.</p> <h2>4. I've Made Too Many Money Mistakes!</h2> <p>Money mishaps can really keep us from making positive strides in our finances. The truth is everyone has financial setbacks in life, but the key is in how you recover and what steps you take to prevent them from happening again.</p> <h3>Squash It</h3> <p>To get better at anything, you've got to learn from your mistakes, but more importantly, forgive yourself. Take out a piece of paper and write down all of your money mishaps without censoring yourself in the next five minutes. Once you are done, take a look at them all, remember what you've learned, and then tear up the piece of paper. They are in your past.</p> <h2>5. I Won't Be Successful if I Don't Own a House!</h2> <p>Owning a house is the American dream. The problem is not all of us can <em>afford</em> a house, and certainly not a $15 million dollar stunner like you'd see on an episode of the Kardashians.</p> <h3>Squash It</h3> <p>Owning a home is great. However, it isn't for everyone. If you want to own a home, the most important thing you can do is to work with a mortgage broker before you go shopping, find out what you can afford, and then take a serious look at your budget. If you plan on staying put for a few years and the numbers work, then go for it. If not, take this money fear off the table and be happy that if you decided you wanted to move to Berlin tomorrow, you could pack your bag and be on a plane in an hour.</p> <p><em>How do you squash your money fears?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/shannah-game">Shannah Game</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-fears-and-how-to-squash-them">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-put-your-spouse-on-a-budget-without-ruining-your-marriage">How to Put Your Spouse on a Budget Without Ruining Your Marriage</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-simple-ways-to-split-bills-with-your-spouse">3 Simple Ways to Split Bills With Your Spouse</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-moves-to-make-the-moment-you-decide-to-get-married">5 Money Moves to Make the Moment You Decide to Get Married</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-i-learned-about-money-after-getting-married">8 Things I Learned About Money After Getting Married</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-long-can-you-really-live-on-unemployment">How Long Can You Really Live on Unemployment?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance irrational fears marriage Mistakes owning a home unemployment Mon, 26 Oct 2015 17:15:24 +0000 Shannah Game 1598510 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Things You Should Never Do During a Job Interview http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-should-never-do-during-a-job-interview <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-things-you-should-never-do-during-a-job-interview" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couple_whispering_000072021719.jpg" alt="People learning what they should never do in a job interview" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Though the U.S. economy is alive and kicking again, the job market still feels a bit sluggish. If you've managed to land an interview, congratulations &mdash; you're doing something right. Build on that success by avoiding common interview blunders. Here are 10 things you should never do in an interview.</p> <h2>1. Don't Arrive Unprepared</h2> <p>Take time to learn about the company and the position you're applying for. Gathering a few basic facts shows motivation and will help you know what questions to ask later. Also, prepare by bringing along extra copies of your resume or CV; some interviewers may be pulled in at the last moment and appreciate your forethought.</p> <h2>2. Don't Show Up Late</h2> <p>No surprise here; don't show up late to a job interview. In fact, pad your schedule by 20&ndash;30 minutes just in case the train is running late or you can't find a parking spot. Arriving to an interview five to 10 minutes early is completely acceptable and gives you time to mentally prepare.</p> <h2>3. Don't Leave Your Phone On</h2> <p>If your phone rings during a job interview, you'd better hope there's an HR director on the other end of the line with a smokin' hot offer. Ringing cell phones and formal job interviews don't mix. As unnatural as it may feel, completely silence or turn your phone off during an interview (and remember, vibrating phones can still be heard and are still a distraction).</p> <h2>4. Don't Sit Down Before You're Invited</h2> <p>Sometimes small courtesies can make a big impression. It's good business etiquette to not sit down until you've been invited or shown to your seat.</p> <h2>5. Don't Slouch</h2> <p>It may sound terribly old-fashioned, but posture matters. Standing tall and sitting up straight not only conveys a sense of maturity and experience to others, it can boost your self confidence. If you're a chronic sloucher, improve your posture with <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/get-and-keep-amazing-posture-by-doing-these-10-stretches-today">10 targeted stretching exercises</a>.</p> <h2>6. Don't Talk Trash</h2> <p>Be honest, but stay positive when it comes to discussing your previous or current employer. The world is smaller than most of us imagine and it's impossible to know the personal or professional connections your interviewer may have.</p> <h2>7. Don't Talk Money</h2> <p>Don't talk money unless you're asked, or an offer has been extended. A premature focus on money and benefits sends the wrong message to your potential employer. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-never-to-bring-up-in-a-job-interview?ref=seealso">5 Things Never to Bring Up in a Job Interview</a>)</p> <h2>8. Don't Mumble</h2> <p>Hold your head up, speak clearly, and make eye contact. Employers shouldn't have to work to hear you and mumblers don't come across as capable, confident employees. Remember, good communication is a skill you can learn. If you've had trouble in the past, explore <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-get-people-to-listen-when-you-talk">ways to speak more effectively</a>.</p> <h2>9. Don't Up Talk</h2> <p>Up-talking is that annoying linguistic habit of phrasing statements as if they were questions (&quot;I really enjoy my current position, but I think I'm ready for something more challenging?&quot;). Up-talking implies you're unsure of what you're saying, need approval, and lack confidence. Sure, it seems like everyone is doing it, but up-talking is still the verbal equivalent of nails on a chalkboard.</p> <h2>10. Don't Skip the Questions</h2> <p>Your interviewer is likely to ask if you have any questions about the role or the company. Don't be shy; be ready with a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-questions-you-should-ask-at-every-job-interview">set of essential interview questions</a>. Speaking up shows that you're interested and have been listening.</p> <p>In our hyper-casual world, paying attention to the details during an interview can help you stand out in all the right ways. Especially for those positions that require interacting with clients or the public, knowing how to navigate a formal interview with grace and refinement is its own unique qualification.</p> <p><em>What's the biggest mistake you've made in an interview? If you've been on the other side of the desk, what advice do you have for interviewees?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kentin-waits">Kentin Waits</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-should-never-do-during-a-job-interview">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/video-resumes-and-5-other-cool-tricks-to-land-the-job">Video Resumes and 5 Other Cool Tricks to Land the Job</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-sell-yourself-to-potential-employers">How to Sell Yourself to Potential Employers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-can-do-right-now-to-become-more-hirable">10 Things You Can Do Right Now to Become More Hirable</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-embarrassing-mistakes-everyone-makes-but-doesnt-talk-about">13 Embarrassing Mistakes Everyone Makes But Doesn&#039;t Talk About</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-you-get-a-new-job-this-year">This Is How You Get a New Job This Year</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Job Hunting blunders etiquette getting hired interviewing Mistakes professionalism Tue, 13 Oct 2015 17:01:32 +0000 Kentin Waits 1583916 at http://www.wisebread.com 13 Embarrassing Mistakes Everyone Makes But Doesn't Talk About http://www.wisebread.com/13-embarrassing-mistakes-everyone-makes-but-doesnt-talk-about <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/13-embarrassing-mistakes-everyone-makes-but-doesnt-talk-about" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_using_smartphone_000063020477.jpg" alt="Man making embarrassing mistakes everyone makes" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>We all make mistakes. That's part of being human. But while we'll cop to some faux pas, there are others we'd rather keep to ourselves. What are they? Take a look at these 13 <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-financial-mistakes-you-need-to-stop-making-by-30">little mistakes</a> (through the lens of my own revealing anecdotes) that everyone makes but doesn't like to talk about.</p> <h2>1. Leaving Dirty Dishes in the Sink When Guests Come Over</h2> <p>With all the other things you have to do before guests visit &mdash; change the linens, fold the towels nicely, clean the bathroom &mdash; ya know, the things you let fall by the wayside for longer than you'd like to admit when nobody is coming over &mdash; it's easy to forget a task here or there. Leaving dirty dishes in the sink is one of the most common, because it may be habitual and/or they're just plain easy to miss. The problem is, it could suggest that you just didn't care enough to tidy up beforehand or that you're kind sloppy &mdash; neither of which are good impressions to leave.</p> <h2>2. Hitting &quot;Reply All&quot; on an Email That Definitely Wasn't Meant for &quot;All&quot;</h2> <p>Since the dawn of workplace email, snarky people have been griping about one another through cyberspace. Though not very nice, it can be quite therapeutic to discuss with a friendly coworker that Linda from accounting keeps wearing totally inappropriate blouses that she's basically falling out of. Or maybe you meant to single out one of your closer colleagues on an email string to be all &quot;WTF?&quot; about the new project that's being proposed.</p> <p>But then you realize you hit &quot;Reply All&quot; instead of sending your nastygram to just that one colleague. And then your heart drops down into your gut because you deduce that there's a good chance you might be unemployed now &mdash; in which case, Linda from accounting or that new project are no longer a point of contention in your life. Mission accomplished.</p> <h2>3. Breaking Something Then Claiming It's &quot;Lost&quot;</h2> <p>Like your brother's Walkman. And if you're exceptionally evil, you'll convince him that he put it in his backpack when he went to school the other day and someone probably stole it on the bus.</p> <h2>4. Sending an Inappropriate Text to an Unintended Person</h2> <p>There are essentially two types of text messages &mdash; straight up text with words and texts with images. If we can all be adults here for a minute, let's just recognize that a good portion of our society sometimes transfers racy images between one another. Even the Romans would blush at this behavior &mdash; and they were freak-nasty. Nonetheless, if you're not careful when sending this scintillating content &mdash; like when you're drunk, because, let's be honest, that's when most people have the liquid courage to think this is the best idea ever &mdash; it can go to the wrong person. Like instead of your boyfriend Tim, it accidentally goes to your church friend Tom. Which means you're totally gonna have to pray about it on Sunday. But, hey, at least Tom is happy.</p> <h2>5. Telling a Joke That Doesn't Go Over Well</h2> <p>I'm just gonna put it out there: I think I'm pretty hysterical. As do most people with whom I keep company. (Or at least they pretend &mdash; which is good enough for me.) But sometimes I'm off my game, not particularly witty, or a joke just downright misses the mark. There have been plenty of times that I've tried to get a joke or dig in that I thought was hilarious that died right on the spot. Face turns red and people sort of half ignore the flop/look at you like &quot;Really?&quot; Best feeling ever &mdash; as I'm sure my fellow bombers will agree.</p> <h2>6. Forgetting the Birthday of Someone Important</h2> <p>A friend of mine reminded me a couple weeks ago that it was my husband's birthday that day. My certificate for &quot;Most Awesome Significant Other Ever&quot; should arrive any day now.</p> <h2>7. Saying Something Terrible to Someone You Love</h2> <p>As much as I've tried to keep this post light and fluffy, there's no humor in spewing terrible, anger-filled verbal garbage to someone you love. Yet we've all done it at some point in our lives &mdash; whether to our parents, our siblings, our best friends, or our significant others. Because they understand that mean things are said in the heat of the moment, most people are willing to forgive. But I can almost guarantee, they'll never forget it &mdash; especially if the jab cuts particularly deep. The only solution to this problem is to mind yourself when tempers flare so you don't have to apologize (yet again) when cooler heads prevail.</p> <h2>8. Saying Something Dumb in Front of Your Boss</h2> <p>True story: I once went to my company's holiday party, proceeded to get wasted, and turned up <em>way </em>too much. While I don't remember a whole lot of the evening, some parts do stand out, like when I referred to an older colleague's wife as Grandma So-and-So (they actually thought it was cute &mdash; thank God) and yelled into the bar area (where both my bosses were) when nobody was cutting a rug that &quot;All you [expletive] need to get on the dance floor.&quot;</p> <p>I took Monday off to look for a new job. Alas, most of my coworkers seemed to think that my antics were the highlight of the night &mdash; the ones who weren't sticks in the mud, anyway &mdash; so while my guilt and embarrassment was completely warranted, it was all for naught. Totally learned my lesson though; from then on I waited until my bosses were gone to curse uncontrollably at my colleagues.</p> <h2>9. Gossiping Within Earshot of the Victim</h2> <p>This is another totally relatable faux pas, but one that is no laughing matter. While admittedly I can be a gossip, I don't like hurting someone's feelings if I can avoid it. But there are times when you think you're being quiet with your smarmy commentary when the subject of the gossip is nearby, but in reality you're either hearing impaired or just plain stupid. I don't which one I am yet, but I strive to be a nicer person with each passing year. I hope you do, too.</p> <h2>10. Setting Something on Top of the Car and Driving Off Without It</h2> <p>I've lost more than one Slurpee that way &mdash; and a few containers of restaurant leftovers. Thankfully, all the babies in carseats have made it inside in time.</p> <h2>11. Forgetting Your Kid at an Activity</h2> <p>I'm not a parent, so I've never forgotten my child someplace &mdash; but I have been a child whose parent has forgotten me someplace. I was mortified, and I thought to myself, &quot;this would never happen to the Beav.&quot; I still send my therapy bills to my parents' house.</p> <h2>12. Realizing You Don't Have Any Doggy Doo Bags &mdash; and Walking Away Like It Doesn't Exist</h2> <p>You know the feeling: As soon as your dog squats down and you reach into your pocket for the bag, and you're like &mdash; oh $#!%. Then you look around to see if anybody saw what just went down right before you briskly walk away dragging your precious pooch behind you like nothing happened at all.</p> <h2>13. More Than Lightly Tapping the Front of Somebody's Car</h2> <p>All you city folk with vehicles know that this struggle is real. You try earnestly not to touch the car in front or behind you when parallel parking, but sometimes that bumper-to-bumper tap is unavoidable. And then there are the times when you put a smidge too much pressure on the gas pedal and you kiss that bumper with a small but audible crunch. Just like you beat feet with your dog sliding down the sidewalk behind you, you try to peel out of there like it was a figment of your imagination. Tisk! If only your mother knew the shady things you do.</p> <p><em>Do you have any more of life's little mistakes that we all make but don't like to talk about? Share your stories in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-embarrassing-mistakes-everyone-makes-but-doesnt-talk-about">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-should-never-do-during-a-job-interview">10 Things You Should Never Do During a Job Interview</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-best-free-tools-to-improve-your-work-performance">The 7 Best Free Tools to Improve Your Work Performance</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-salvage-a-burnt-meal">10 Ways to Salvage a Burnt Meal</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-baking-soda-took-my-bathroom-from-yuck-to-yes">How Baking Soda Took My Bathroom from “Yuck” to Yes!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/17-things-car-salesmen-dont-want-you-to-know">17 Things Car Salesmen Don&#039;t Want You to Know</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks blunders embarrassment faux pas Mistakes screw ups Tue, 04 Aug 2015 09:00:18 +0000 Mikey Rox 1507506 at http://www.wisebread.com 9 Common Apartment Hunting Mistakes to Avoid http://www.wisebread.com/9-common-apartment-hunting-mistakes-to-avoid <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/9-common-apartment-hunting-mistakes-to-avoid" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couple_using_tablet_000037104790.jpg" alt="Couple discovering apartment hunting mistakes to avoid" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Looking for a new apartment to rent? Spring and summer are moving season for many renters. It's also a time filled with excitement and hope &mdash; the hope that the next place will be better than the last. I've been there.</p> <p>Fortunately, a lot of the problems that plague renters can be avoided just by choosing that apartment a little more carefully. Here are nine <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-apartment-hunt-on-craigslist-without-getting-scammed">apartment hunting</a> mistakes to avoid while you're looking.</p> <h2>1. Assuming That Moving Will Solve Your Problem</h2> <p>As a renter, it's easy to get used to moving; new year, new apartment. Unfortunately, that new lease often means a new set of problems. Moving is stressful and carries a long list of expenses. Before you decide to move to where the grass is greener, consider whether you're really that unhappy where you are. Every living space has its pros and cons. Decide whether you can live with your apartment's drawbacks before moving on to a new set of problems.</p> <h2>2. Falling in Love Too Soon</h2> <p>These days, apartment hunting usually begins online, where you can browse through photos of apartments for rent in your area. There's nothing wrong with doing a little previewing before you go out to view these places in person; just keep in mind that in many cases, photos tell very little. Not only will landlords do their best to make their rental units look attractive, but photos also lack a lot of detail. A rental unit that looks super cute and cozy in a photo, might turn out to be much shabbier in real life. The problem is, if the photos put stars in your eyes, you might already be in love.</p> <h2>3. Failing to See the Big Picture</h2> <p>Before you set out to look for a new apartment, think about what's really important to you. Are you looking for a short commute to work? Proximity to certain amenities such as shopping, parks, or public transportation? It's important to understand the big picture in terms of what you want out of your apartment, to size up each apartment as a whole. Otherwise, you're likely to zero-in on smaller, less important details, like the size of the unit, the decor, or fantastically cheap rent.</p> <h2>4. Allowing Yourself to Be Wooed by Fancy Fixtures</h2> <p>Fancy fixtures like hardwood floors and granite countertops are great, but when you have a budget to stick to, it's best not to be too fixated on what are essentially details. For one thing, these amenities are purely aesthetic, and will quickly lose their luster if the apartment fails to meet your needs in other key ways. Plus, in many cases, apartments in less desirable locations get the best cosmetic upgrades to entice renters. If you wouldn't live in this apartment if it didn't have fancy fixtures, you probably shouldn't move in just because it does.</p> <h2>5. Going Out of Your League</h2> <p>Before you start looking for an apartment, you have to decide how much rent you are capable of paying. Most financial experts recommend that you spend no more than 30% of your take-home (after-tax) income on housing. Depending on your other financial obligations &mdash; and your personal financial goals &mdash; you may want to spend even less. But no matter what price point you decide on, once you have a number in mind, stick to it. And do not, under any circumstances, look at apartments that exceed your budget. Chances are they will be nicer. As a result, they will make the places you <em>can </em>afford look much shabbier in comparison. They might also tempt you to blow your budget.</p> <h2>6. Failing to Read the Rental Agreement</h2> <p>I once signed a rental agreement that stated that I was responsible for repainting the apartment before moving out. I was a student and had never painted anything in my life. Of course, I lost most of my damage deposit on that one. Rental agreements lay out, in legal terms, what you as a renter are responsible for. Read every word carefully and make sure you're up for it. If you aren't, move on.</p> <h2>7. Overlooking Existing Damage</h2> <p>Most rental agreements include a damage deposit. This is money that the landlord holds in order to pay for any damage the tenant may cause during the term of the lease. This can get tricky if you don't document any damages that were already there when you moved in. On the day you get possession of your apartment, walk through it with your landlord and document existing damage to ensure you are not charged for them when your lease is up.</p> <h2>8. Not Considering Roommates Carefully</h2> <p>I've been lucky to have really good roommates, but living with other people is still hard. When you share your personal space with someone, you get to know each other on a pretty intimate level. Things can get ugly. So try to choose your roommates carefully. There are different philosophies on this. Some people think it's best to choose a roommate who isn't a friend. Others say it's best to room with a bestie. Either way, make sure you get some references to ensure that your roommate has a solid history of paying their rent.</p> <h2>9. Not Vetting Your Landlord</h2> <p>Some landlords care about their properties and their tenants. They'll take your calls and fix leaking toilets and send an exterminator in to deal with your ant problem. Other landlords treat their tenants like cash machines; money is withdrawn, never to be seen again. If you have problems with your apartment, a bad landlord can make your life hell. I once tip-toed across a bridge of soggy cardboard boxes for weeks until my landlord got around the fixing a leaking hot water tank that flooded my apartment. So, be sure to run a check on your landlord before you sign a rental agreement. Do a Google search, ask if you can contact previous tenants, and check with the Better Business Bureau to see if any complaints have been filed against the landlord or property management company. If you discover serious issues, find another place to rent. Dealing with an uncooperative landlord just isn't worth it.</p> <p><em>What apartment-hunting mistakes have you made? How did you learn your lesson?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tara-struyk">Tara Struyk</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-common-apartment-hunting-mistakes-to-avoid">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-forget-to-budget-for-these-unexpected-moving-expenses">Don&#039;t Forget to Budget for These Unexpected Moving Expenses</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-simple-way-to-decide-how-much-rent-you-can-really-afford">The Simple Way to Decide How Much Rent You Can Really Afford</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/self-employed-heres-how-to-get-your-apartment-application-approved">Self-Employed? Here&#039;s How to Get Your Apartment Application Approved</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-apartment-hunt-on-craigslist-without-getting-scammed">6 Ways to Apartment Hunt on Craigslist Without Getting Scammed</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-questions-landlords-cant-ask">10 Questions Landlords Can&#039;t Ask</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Real Estate and Housing apartments Mistakes moving new home renting Mon, 13 Jul 2015 15:00:10 +0000 Tara Struyk 1485196 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Dumb Stock Picking Mistakes Even Smart Investors Make http://www.wisebread.com/7-dumb-stock-picking-mistakes-even-smart-investors-make <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-dumb-stock-picking-mistakes-even-smart-investors-make" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_thinking_newspaper_000053925278.jpg" alt="Smart man realizing he picked dumb stocks" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Everybody loves a winner.</p> <p>That explains why America seems to be obsessed with stories of amazing stock pickers, such as the New Jersey teen wonder who allegedly <a href="http://www.theverge.com/2014/12/3/7319277/whiz-kid-penny-stocks-smartphone-mobile-trader">turned $10,000 into $300,000</a> by trading penny stocks from his smartphone</p> <p>However, even some of the smartest (and luckiest!) investors make mistakes sometimes. Here are seven dumb mistakes to watch out for the next time you're picking investment options.</p> <h2>1. Having No Investment Goals</h2> <p>If you don't know where you're going, you'll never know when you get there.</p> <p>However deeply people may agree with this statement, there are still those who lack clear investment goals. Your first step in investing is defining these goals.</p> <p>Here are three examples of good ones:</p> <ul> <li>In order to avoid the extra cost of private mortgage insurance, you would like to save for a down payment that is at least 20% of a $300,000 apartment in your city within the next 10 years.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>You first child is just born and you would like to have $35,000 available for his or her college tuition by their 18th birthday.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Planning to retire 33 years from today, you and your spouse calculated you'd need $3,000 every month to cover your expenses during retirement.</li> </ul> <p>Notice the two things that these goals have in common: a specific dollar amount and a target date. These two elements are the starting point for any discussion about investing. They allow you to establish a timeline and select benchmarks to evaluate your performance.</p> <p>Before you even think about stock picking, establish your investment goals. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-dumb-401k-mistakes-smart-people-make?ref=seealso">5 Dumb 401(k) Mistakes Smart People Make</a>)</p> <h2>2. Ignoring Your Risk Tolerance</h2> <p>There are two key elements to determining your risk tolerance.</p> <p>First, there is your time horizon. A rule of thumb is that the longer your time horizon, the riskier your investments may be. Since you don't need the funds for quite a while, you can better sustain the ups and downs of the market and chase higher returns. On the other hand, if you need the funds a year from now, you're better off taking more conservative investments.</p> <p>Second is your available &quot;play money.&quot; A person with a net worth of $1 million is more likely to better stomach the price fluctuations of a $25,000 investment than a person with a net worth of $75,000. Also, don't forget about potential liquidity issues. The second individual would be in a really tough situation if he were to suddenly need those $25,000 to pay damages from a lawsuit or meet another type of big financial obligation.</p> <p>Pick investments according to your time horizon and bankroll.</p> <h2>3. Spending Instead of Investing</h2> <p>While some people are very eager to start stock picking, others think they can't even afford it.</p> <p>Or it could be that those others may be listening to their &quot;lizard brain&quot; a bit too much. The idea of the &quot;lizard brain&quot; refers to the instincts that helped our ancestors to survive back in the stone age. Given scarce resources and the ever-present possibility of death, our ancestors prefered to enjoy things right away instead of waiting.</p> <p>Old habits die hard. Given the choice of enjoying $500 right now or receiving $3,000 in five years, most of us would chose the first option. However, this is a bad idea.</p> <p>By refusing to invest even just a little bit, you're incurring a huge opportunity cost. For example, let's imagine that you make an initial investment to your 401(k) of $100. Assuming your 401(k) has a return rate of 5% compounded annually and you contribute $100 every month for 20 years, you would end up with $40,845.78.</p> <p>Start investing today. Right now. Even a little bit! 20 years from now, you'll be glad that you did.</p> <h2>4. Paying Too Much in Fees</h2> <p>This is one of Warren Buffett's <a href="http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/personalfinance/2013/10/26/warren-buffett-investment-advice/3188499/">top three investing mistakes</a> to avoid. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-investors-with-better-returns-than-warren-buffett?ref=seealso">5 Investors With Better Returns Than Warren Buffett</a>)</p> <p>While you can't be 100% sure about the return of your stock picks, you can be 100% sure of how much money you're paying in management and trade fees. For example, if you were to invest $10,000 in the average actively managed U.S. mutual fund, you would pay $132 in fees. On the other, you would pay just $17 by investing the same $10,000 in the Vanguard Total Stock Market Index (VTSMX), the largest index mutual fund.</p> <h2>5. Trying to Beat the Market</h2> <p>Here's another reason to choose index mutual funds.</p> <p>Most actively managed funds fail to achieve returns above their respective benchmark. Only about 20%&ndash;35% of fund managers are able to &quot;beat the market.&quot; These are the pros that do this for a living. Are you sure that you can do better than them on your spare time while juggling your job and family life?</p> <p>Over the long-term, index funds are typically top performers and do better than 65%&ndash;75% of actively managed funds. And index funds cost you less than a fund manager, too.</p> <h2>6. Betting on a Single Stock</h2> <p>There are too many stories about people getting filthy rich by putting all their money on Apple stock.</p> <p>Before you decide to put all your eggs in one basket, consider the performances of these two other past media darlings.</p> <h3>Groupon</h3> <p>Launched in November 2008, Groupon quickly became the leader of the deal-of-the-day movement. Groupon became one of the fastest companies to reach a <a href="http://www.forbes.com/forbes/2010/0830/entrepreneurs-groupon-facebook-twitter-next-web-phenom.html">$1 billion valuation</a>. Heck, Groupon was doing so well that it turned down a <a href="http://www.businessinsider.com/why-groupon-said-no-to-google-2010-12">$6 billion buyout offer</a> from Google. However, an original investment of $10,000 in Groupon on November 7, 2011 would only be worth about $2,554.66 today.</p> <h3>Enron</h3> <p>It's hard to believe that Enron was once a media darling. Back in 2001, Enron's stock was priced at 70 times earnings and 6 times book value. Out of the 22 analysts covering Enron, 19 of them rated the stock a &quot;buy.&quot; The maximum stock price of $90 in August 2000 convinced several people to put all their nest eggs on Enron. A little over two years later, the stock was trading below $1.</p> <p>The lesson is that history tends to repeat itself, so don't bet all your money on a single stock. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-investing-lessons-you-must-teach-your-kids?ref=seealso">10 Investing Lessons You Must Teach Your Kids</a>)</p> <h2>7. Not Rebalancing Your Portfolio</h2> <p>Last but not least, remember that asset prices vary over time.</p> <p>Your investment plan sets a target allocation of your monies in different types of investments. For example, you may have 50% in domestic stocks, 30% in foreign stocks, 20% in bonds, and 10% in T-bills.</p> <p>Let's imagine that your foreign stock holdings had a nice upward ride for the last five years. So, now they represent 50% of your total investment portfolio's value. It's a good idea to rebalance your portfolio to set back your allocation of funds to the target 30% so that you're not taking more risk than you're comfortable with.</p> <p>It's shocking how simple it can be to avoid these six investing mistakes.There's no secret to stock picking &mdash; it just requires planning and sticking to that plan. It may not sound exciting, but it's more likely to make you a profit. And isn't that why you really invest?</p> <p><em>What steps have you taken to fix your investment decisions?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/damian-davila">Damian Davila</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-dumb-stock-picking-mistakes-even-smart-investors-make">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-4-best-investments-for-lazy-investors">The 4 Best Investments for Lazy Investors</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-build-an-investment-portfolio-for-under-5000">How to Build an Investment Portfolio for Under $5000</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-most-important-thing-youre-probably-not-doing-with-your-portfolio">The Most Important Thing You&#039;re Probably Not Doing With Your Portfolio</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-your-retirement-by-avoiding-these-10-risky-investments">Save Your Retirement by Avoiding These 10 Risky Investments</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-tell-if-your-401k-is-a-good-or-a-bad-one">How to Tell if Your 401K Is a Good or a Bad One</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Investment Mistakes portfolios risks stocks Tue, 12 May 2015 17:00:44 +0000 Damian Davila 1414192 at http://www.wisebread.com 12 More Grammar Mistakes That Are Making You Look Stupid http://www.wisebread.com/12-more-grammar-mistakes-that-are-making-you-look-stupid <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/12-more-grammar-mistakes-that-are-making-you-look-stupid" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/businessman-writing-450814525-small.jpg" alt="businessman writing" title="businessman writing" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Having bad grammar can be a job killer.</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://hbr.org/2012/07/i-wont-hire-people-who-use-poo/">Some employers won't hire people who use poor grammar</a>.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Even in industries, such as IT, <a href="http://www.techrepublic.com/blog/career-management/would-you-hire-someone-with-poor-grammar-skills/">good grammar is a requirement</a>.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Human resource experts see <a href="http://www.cbsnews.com/news/why-sloppiness-is-killing-your-job-search/">bad grammar as an obstacle to landing the job</a>.</li> </ul> <p>Simply put: If you're not able to distinguish the difference between &quot;your&quot; and &quot;you're,&quot; employers may not be comfortable with your learning curve.</p> <p>So take action today, and fix these 12 more grammar mistakes that are making you look stupid. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-grammar-mistakes-that-are-making-you-look-stupid?ref=seealso">12 Grammar Mistakes That Are Making You Look Stupid</a>)</p> <h2>Mixing Up Words</h2> <p>At the top of the list of grammar mistakes is the misuse of homonyms (words that sound alike). Let's look at some common mixups.</p> <h3>1. Its vs It's</h3> <ul> <li><em>Its</em> is a possessive pronoun</li> <li><em>It's</em> is a contraction of &quot;it is.&quot;</li> </ul> <p>The test to determine whether or not you're using &quot;it's&quot; correctly is to replace it for &quot;it is.&quot; For example, &quot;<em>It's</em> an apple&quot; is correct (&quot;<em>It is</em> an apple&quot; makes sense), and &quot;<em>It's</em> red car is awesome&quot; is incorrect (&quot;<em>It is</em> red car is awesome&quot; doesn't make sense).</p> <h3>2. Lose vs Loose</h3> <p>That extra &quot;o&quot; makes a world of difference.</p> <ul> <li>Use <em>lose</em> to indicate that you're unable to find something or someone, or fail to win a game or contest. For example, &quot;when I play chess with grandpa, I <em>lose</em> all the time!&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>On the other hand, use <em>loose</em> when something is not tightly fastened, attached, or held. For example, &quot;wearing <em>loose</em> pants is very comfortable.&quot;</li> </ul> <h3>3. To vs Too vs Two</h3> <ul> <li><em>To</em> indicates place or direction. (&quot;I moved from Maryland to Hawaii.&quot;) <em>To</em> is also used when you're using a verb in its infinitive form. (&quot;<em>To</em> make that move was great!&quot;)<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><em>Too</em> means also. (&quot;I made that move, <em>too</em>!&quot;)<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><em>Two</em> is the number after one. (&quot;<em>Two</em> people moved from Maryland to Hawaii.&quot;)</li> </ul> <p>Now that you know the difference, test yourself with this sentence: &quot;I'm to/too/two tired to/too/two help you carry these to/too/two suitcases to/too/two the taxi.&quot;</p> <h3>4. Accept vs Except</h3> <p>While these words may sound alike, they have very different meanings. Generally <em>except</em> is a preposition (it can also be a verb or conjunction) and <em>accept</em> is a verb. Here are some examples.</p> <ul> <li>The most common use of except is to exclude somebody or something. For example, &quot;the family was all there <em>except</em> Uncle Jerry.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Use accept when you take or receive something, such as in the event that &quot;you <em>accept</em> the Oscar on behalf of Leonardo DiCaprio.&quot;</li> </ul> <h3>5. Advice vs Advise</h3> <p>Confusing these two words can sound like nails scratching on a chalkboard. <em>Advice</em> is a noun and <em>advise</em> is a verb.</p> <ul> <li>Use <em>advice</em> to refer to guidance or recommendations. (&quot;I accept your <em>advice</em>.&quot;)<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>On the other hand, use <em>advise</em> to indicate the action of giving suggestions or recommendations. (&quot;I <em>advise</em> you to go home.&quot;)</li> </ul> <h2>Idioms</h2> <p>An idiom is an expression whose meaning is not predictable from the usual meanings of the words that make it up. The most mistakes with idioms involve verbs and their associated prepositions.</p> <h3>6. Distinguish From vs Distinguish Between&hellip; And&hellip;.</h3> <p>Both idioms are correct, but you need to use the right prepositions at the right time.</p> <ul> <li>Incorrect: &quot;Some people can't <em>distinguish</em> Monet <em>and</em> Manet.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Correct: &quot;Some people can't <em>distinguish between</em> Monet <em>and</em> Manet.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Correct: Some people can't <em>distinguish</em> Monet <em>from</em> Manet.&quot;</li> </ul> <h3>7. Consider</h3> <p>When you use &quot;consider,&quot; you don't add the preposition &quot;as.&quot;</p> <p>I <em>consider</em> this a common mistake because people think of the similar idiomatic expression, &quot;regard as.&quot;</p> <h3>8. Supposed To</h3> <p>In this case, the problem is not the preposition but the verb tense in the idiom.</p> <ul> <li>Incorrect: &quot;I was suppose to call you last weekend.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Correct: &quot;I was <em>supposed to</em> call you last weekend.&quot;</li> </ul> <h2>Made Up Words or Phrases</h2> <p>These words don't even exist, yet somehow end up in our speech and writing. Here are some terrifying abuses of the English language.</p> <h3>9. Irregardless</h3> <p>Holy double negatives, Batman!</p> <p>&quot;Irregardless&quot; is not a word. When you're trying to say &quot;anyhow&quot; or &quot;anyway&quot; use &quot;regardless.&quot; When you use &quot;regardless&quot; at the beginning of a sentence, add the preposition &quot;of.&quot;</p> <ul> <li>Correct: &quot;They knew it was going to rain; they went to the park <em>regardless</em>.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Correct: &quot;<em>Regardless of</em> the rain, they went to the beach.&quot;</li> </ul> <h3>10. Could of, Would of, and Should of</h3> <p>When said quickly &quot;I would've gone to the movies if you had invited me,&quot; some people may hear &quot;would of.&quot; This happens because &quot;would have&quot; is contracted as &quot;would've.&quot;</p> <p>&quot;Could of,&quot; &quot;would of,&quot; and &quot;should of&quot; are speech slurs of &quot;could've,&quot; &quot;would've,&quot; and &quot;should've.&quot; When writing out these expressions, make sure to spell them correctly as &quot;could've,&quot; &quot;would've,&quot; and &quot;should've.&quot;</p> <h3>11. Doggy-Dog World</h3> <p>A &quot;doggy-dog&quot; world sounds like a wonderful paradise filled with tiny, fluffy, and cuddly puppies.</p> <p>If you're trying to say that the world is a vicious place filled with people that will betray one another to get to the top, then you must be referring to a &quot;dog-eat-dog world.&quot;</p> <h3>12. Dangling Participle</h3> <p>Last but not least, here is my second favorite grammar pet peeve: the dangling participle.</p> <p>Also known as dangling modifier, the dangling participle is one of the most common grammar mistakes. Not only will this error make you look dumb, but also it will render your speech or writing almost unintelligible.</p> <ul> <li>Incorrect: &quot;By studying every day, the grade increased from 70 to 90.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Correct: &quot;By studying every day, Mike increased his score from 70 to 90.&quot;</li> </ul> <p>Notice that a modifier (&quot;By studying every day&quot;) attaches to the first noun it meets. Since grades don't study, the modifier is misplaced in the first example. In the second, it modifies &quot;Mike,&quot; and we understand how he improved his score.</p> <p>Modifier phrases, such as participles, must be right before or right after the noun that they're modifying. Take a look at this next example:</p> <ul> <li>Incorrect: &quot;After declining for months, the company turned around its revenue.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Better: &quot;After declining for months, the revenue was turned around by the company.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Best: &quot;The company turned around the revenue, which had been declining for months.&quot; (This is the best choice because it avoids the use of passive voice.)</li> </ul> <p>By paying attention to these grammar mistakes, you are improving the chances of landing your dream job.</p> <p><em>What are your grammar pet peeves? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/damian-davila">Damian Davila</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-more-grammar-mistakes-that-are-making-you-look-stupid">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-grammar-mistakes-that-are-making-you-look-stupid">12 Grammar Mistakes That Are Making You Look Stupid</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/change-your-life-by-learning-how-to-admit-youre-wrong">Change Your Life by Learning How to Admit You&#039;re Wrong</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-stupidest-things-smart-people-do">The 10 Stupidest Things Smart People Do</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/lessons-learned-from-new-years-eves-gone-wrong">Lessons Learned from New Year&#039;s Eves Gone Wrong</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-salvage-a-burnt-meal">10 Ways to Salvage a Burnt Meal</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> General Tips diction grammar Mistakes spelling Fri, 21 Nov 2014 15:00:16 +0000 Damian Davila 1257851 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Kitchen Mistakes Good Cooks Make http://www.wisebread.com/10-kitchen-mistakes-good-cooks-make <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-kitchen-mistakes-good-cooks-make" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/baking-disaster-119148197-small.jpg" alt="baking disaster" title="baking disaster" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>How did I manage to overcook that roast? Why did my cookies spread all over the pan? These cooking mistakes are common, yet can be avoided.</p> <p>We have all made mistakes, even pros like <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iR64GGyEv_o">Julia Child.</a> My mother once made a Baked Alaska mistakenly using salt; my mother-in-law set off the smoke alarm so many times we called it her oven timer. Just learn from your mistakes, and move on. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-surprising-cooking-hacks-that-save-time?ref=seealso">7 Surprising Cooking Hacks That Save Time in the Kitchen</a>)</p> <p>Here are 10 common errors, and how to avoid them.</p> <h2>1. You Didn't Taste Before You Served</h2> <p>So, you followed the recipe to the &quot;t,&quot; but it just didn't measure up when it hit the table. Who is to blame? You are! Taste as you go. Your sauce may need more sweetness, acid, or salt, and <em>while</em> you are cooking is the best time to add, not once it is ladled out. (Note: This does not apply to baking, where use of exact ingredients is important, and where you <em>do not</em> want to eat raw eggs.) If you are still unsure, get a second opinion. My husband is pretty used to me coming at him with a spoon.</p> <h2>2. Under-Salting</h2> <p>My parents' generation got a big scare from the media about the use of salt. As a consequence, food often tasted bland. Most salt in your diet comes from processed foods, so if you are cooking your own food, you don't have to be such a fraidy-cat. Just watch a few professional cooking shows or videos and see how much salt the chefs use. I am usually astounded. Certainly, if you have issues with high blood pressure or your heart, you need to be careful &mdash; but otherwise, salt away!</p> <h2>3. Eating Right Away</h2> <p>It is much easier to slice up a roast, or a chicken, and the result will be tastier, if you allow it to &quot;rest&quot; after cooking. Meat continues to cook even after you remove it from the oven. The center continues to heat while the outside cools down. Let the meat &quot;rest&quot; and re-absorb the moisture. A large roast needs about 25 minutes; a whole chicken or turkey should sit for 20 minutes. If you are worried about it getting cold, tent it with some aluminum foil. Slice too soon, and there go your juices!</p> <h2>4. You Don't Know Your Oven Temperature</h2> <p>The oven dial may <em>say</em> 350 degrees, but is it, really? Get a second opinion. For just a few dollars, you can buy an <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00004XSBV/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00004XSBV&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=5S3UVXXWHV4U5XPS">oven dial thermometer</a> to check. If it's off, check your owner's manual; you may be able to fix it. If not, you may want to call a professional repairman.</p> <h2>5. Over-Softened Butter</h2> <p>I do this too often, because I live in a warm, humid climate. Butter softens here in record time. And then what happens? Cookies, which should be plump, spread. Cake batter will not cream properly. If this happens, start over. Properly softened butter should be the consistency of Play-Doh.</p> <h2>6. Your Knives Aren't Sharp</h2> <p><iframe width="605" height="340" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/SBn1i9YqN1k?rel=0"></iframe></p> <p>Dull knives are <em>dangerous</em>. If your blade is dull, it can slip off of the food you are cutting and cut <em>you</em>! You also use more force with a dull knife. You are more likely to work more safely when using a sharp knife. <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SBn1i9YqN1k">Sharpening knives</a> is not that difficult to learn.</p> <h2>7. You Crowded the Pan</h2> <p>Sometimes, I just want to get some big-batch cooking done and put too many vegetables on the cookie sheet to roast&hellip; or try to brown too much meat at once. And then what happens? Things get soggy. Yuck! Food that needs to brown needs room, so it's better to do it in batches, if you have a lot of it.</p> <h2>8. Dang, Burned It Again</h2> <p>Most often, it's because I am using the wrong burner size on my gas stove. Sometimes, I have the flame up too high (it should never go up the outside of the pan). Also, sometimes I get distracted between the news, texting, or checking a recipe while I am cooking. Good tricks to prevent burning are to set a timer, if you are walking away, or to eliminate some of the distractions until you can turn the stove off.</p> <h2>9. What's Wrong With the Mashed Potatoes?</h2> <p>My mother insisted on &quot;whipping&quot; her potatoes with a hand-mixer, and that's why they became gluey. You are much better off using a ricer or a hand masher. The potato you select makes a huge difference, too. Try Yukon Golds &mdash; and <a href="http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/perfect_mashed_potatoes/">this perfect mashed recipe</a> &mdash; for really delicious potatoes.</p> <h2>10. You Didn't Practice &quot;Clean As You Go&quot;</h2> <p>Unless you want to end up with a sink full of dirty dishes, pots, and pans, you may as well clean up as you go along. It's pretty tiring to cook a meal, then turn around and survey the mess. If most of the dirty kitchen has already been dealt with, you will simplify mealtime.</p> <p>Cooking should be fun. Even if you make mistakes, chalk them up to experience, and move on. Everyone who cooks has a funny &quot;mistake&quot; story! Remember, as Julia Child said, &quot;Have the courage of your convictions!&quot;</p> <p><em>Have I overlooked any common kitchen mistakes? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/marla-walters">Marla Walters</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-kitchen-mistakes-good-cooks-make">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-salvage-a-burnt-meal">10 Ways to Salvage a Burnt Meal</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cooking-for-beginners-10-recipes-for-kitchen-newbies">Cooking for Beginners: 10 Recipes for Kitchen Newbies</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kick-ass-alternatives-to-canned-cranberry-sauce">Kick-Ass Alternatives to Canned Cranberry Sauce</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/canned-vs-dried-beans-which-are-cheaper">Canned vs. Dried Beans: Which Are Cheaper?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/better-brewing-12-ways-to-make-coffee-at-home">Better Brewing: 12 Ways to Make Coffee at Home</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink Cooking kitchen Mistakes skills Mon, 27 Oct 2014 17:00:06 +0000 Marla Walters 1243332 at http://www.wisebread.com 12 Grammar Mistakes That Are Making You Look Stupid http://www.wisebread.com/12-grammar-mistakes-that-are-making-you-look-stupid <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/12-grammar-mistakes-that-are-making-you-look-stupid" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/writing-459418871-small.jpg" alt="writing" title="writing" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Good grammar is sexy.</p> <p>On the other hand, bad grammar is not only a turn off, but also increases the likelihood that people skip your message altogether. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-ways-to-get-people-to-respond-to-your-email?ref=seealso">15 Ways to Get People to Respond to Your Email</a>)</p> <p>&quot;If you is not doing it good, the grammar,&quot; you may be appearing dumb to others. So, clean up your speech and your writing by avoiding these 12 common grammar mistakes.</p> <h2>Use the Right Word</h2> <p>As Inigo Montoya said in <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000TJBNHG/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B000TJBNHG&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=OZJLP2SBJTMMXSZH">The Princess Bride</a>: &quot;You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.&quot;</p> <h3>1. Specially vs Especially</h3> <p>These two adverbs often confuse people. While both of them indicate that something is particular, they are used in different circumstances.</p> <ul> <li>Use <em>specially</em> to indicate a particular or specific purpose. For example, &quot;I baked this pie <em>specially</em> for this occasion.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Include &quot;especially&quot; to denote a particular or exceptional quality. For example, &quot;Steve did <em>especially</em> well on today's game.&quot;</li> </ul> <h3>2. Your vs You're</h3> <ul> <li><em>Your</em> is a possessive pronoun.</li> <li><em>You're</em> is a contraction of &quot;you are.&quot;</li> </ul> <p>When in doubt about whether or not you're using <em>you're</em> correctly, expand the contraction. For example, &quot;<em>You're</em> pants are wrinkly&quot; is incorrect (&quot;<em>You are</em> pants are wrinkly&quot;), and it should be &quot;<em>Your</em> pants are wrinkly.&quot;</p> <h3>3. Effect vs Affect</h3> <p>While both words can be used as either verbs or nouns, generally <em>effect</em> is a noun and <em>affect</em> is a verb. We can clarify it a little further.</p> <ul> <li>When you are referring to a result or consequence, use <em>effect</em>. For example, &quot;the <em>effects</em> of this workout are impressive.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>On the other hand, use <em>affect</em> when indicating the action or influence. For example, &quot;this workout <em>affects</em> the way I walk.&quot;</li> </ul> <h3>4. Elicit vs Illicit</h3> <ul> <li><em>Elicit</em> is a verb meaning &quot;to bring out.&quot;</li> <li><em>Illicit</em> is an adjective indicating that something is illegal or unlawful.</li> </ul> <p>Check out the difference: &quot;The interviewer couldn't <em>elicit</em> information from the executive about the <em>illicit</em> business transactions.&quot;</p> <h3>5. Their vs They're vs There</h3> <ul> <li><em>Their</em> is a possessive pronoun. (&quot;This is <em>their</em> house.&quot;)<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><em>They're</em> is a contraction of &quot;they are.&quot; Use the same test described for <em>you're</em> to check your sentence.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><em>There</em> is an adverb specifying place. (&quot;The entrance to the party is over <em>there</em>.&quot;)</li> </ul> <p>In general, words that sound alike (known as <em>homonyms</em>) are common sources of grammatical errors. While I have selected five of the most common ones, you can also review this <a href="http://grammar.about.com/od/words/a/HomonymChart.htm">list of 200 homonyms</a>.</p> <h2>Pronouns</h2> <p>Let's use the following sentence &quot;Mary and Kelly are sisters, and she like to eat cake&quot; to explain two frequent issues when using pronouns.</p> <h3>6. Subject-Pronoun Agreement</h3> <p>The verb tense is singular so &quot;like&quot; must be referring to both Mary and Kelly. We need to switch &quot;she&quot; with &quot;they&quot; to indicate that both sisters like to eat cake: &quot;Mary and Kelly are sisters, and <em>they</em> like to eat cake.&quot;</p> <h3>7. Pronoun Ambiguity</h3> <p>If you were to note that only one of the sisters likes to eat cake, you would write &quot;Mary and Kelly are sisters, and she likes to eat cake.&quot;</p> <p>The problem with this sentence is that we are not sure which sister is the one that likes to eat cake. To prevent pronoun ambiguity replace a pronoun with the correct noun that you're referring to: &quot;Mary and Kelly are sisters, and <em>Mary</em> likes to eat cake.&quot;</p> <h2>Lists and Comparisons</h2> <p>When you build lists or compare items, you have to be consistent in order and form.</p> <h3>8. Parallel Lists</h3> <p>Items in a list need to be in <em>parallel</em> form, which means that all phrases and clauses are similar.</p> <ul> <li>Incorrect: &quot;He was proud of his book, car, and his pet.&quot;</li> <li>Correct: &quot;He was proud of his book, his car, and his pet.&quot;</li> <li>Correct: &quot;He was proud of his book, car, and pet.&quot;</li> </ul> <p>Be consistent in your lists by using either only gerunds or only nouns, not both.</p> <ul> <li>Incorrect: &quot;Developing a plan, investment security, and working fast are essential for entrepreneurial success.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Correct: &quot;Developing a plan, securing investments, and working fast are essential for entrepreneurial success.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Correct: &quot;Plan development, investment security, and fast work are essential for entrepreneurial success.&quot;</li> </ul> <p>Maintaining strong parallelism in speech and writing has a bonus effect &mdash; in addition to helping you sound smarter, it will encourage you to think more clearly.</p> <h3>9. Logical Comparisons</h3> <p>Compare items that are both grammatically and logically comparable. Since those items are also in a list, keep the list in parallel form.</p> <ul> <li>Incorrect: &quot;Unlike the economies of Italy and France, England has a terrible economy.&quot;</li> <li>Correct: &quot;Unlike the economies of Italy and France, the economy of England is terrible.&quot;</li> <li>Correct: &quot;Unlike Italy and France, England has a terrible economy.&quot;</li> </ul> <h2>Subjunctive Mood</h2> <p>The subjunctive mood is the verb form used to express a wish, a suggestion, a command, or a condition that is contrary to fact. Despite its fancy name, the subjunctive mood is used quite often.</p> <h3>10. Hypothetical Situations</h3> <p>When talking about hypothetical situations or contrary-to-fact scenarios, use &quot;were&quot; and &quot;would.&quot; A quick way to remember this rule is that the lyrics from <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9rlNpWYQunY">Gwen Stefani's Rich Girl</a> (&quot;If I was a rich girl&hellip;&quot;) are grammatically incorrect, and those from <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AWpsOqh8q0M">Beyonce's If I Were a Boy</a> are grammatically correct.</p> <h3>11. Orders and Recommendations</h3> <p>Verbs, such as <em>order</em>, <em>demand</em>, <em>wish</em>, and <em>insist</em>, attract the subjunctive mood. When using these and similar verbs the correct sentence format looks like this:</p> <ul> <li>The President demands that taxes be lowered.</li> <li>My mother insists that the door be opened.</li> </ul> <p>After the verb, use &quot;that,&quot; a new subject, and the infinitive form of a verb without the &quot;to.&quot; In these cases, a common mistake when using the subjunctive is to use an unnecessary &quot;should.&quot;</p> <h2>12. Countable vs Uncountable Items</h2> <p>Last but not least, here is my personal grammar pet peeve: the incorrect use of <em>less</em> and <em>few</em>.</p> <ul> <li><em>Less</em> can only refer to uncountable things, such as water, confidence, and energy.</li> <li><em>Few</em> must refer to countable things, such as dollars, persons, and cats.</li> </ul> <p>Notice that while <em>money</em> is not countable, <em>euros</em> are countable. The easiest way to prevent this mistake is by using units of measurement, such as watts for energy and degrees for temperature.</p> <p>I hope that you have <em>less</em> uncertainty about grammar and make <em>fewer </em>mistakes!</p> <p><em>What are your grammar pet peeves? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/damian-davila">Damian Davila</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-grammar-mistakes-that-are-making-you-look-stupid">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-more-grammar-mistakes-that-are-making-you-look-stupid">12 More Grammar Mistakes That Are Making You Look Stupid</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/change-your-life-by-learning-how-to-admit-youre-wrong">Change Your Life by Learning How to Admit You&#039;re Wrong</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-stupidest-things-smart-people-do">The 10 Stupidest Things Smart People Do</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/lessons-learned-from-new-years-eves-gone-wrong">Lessons Learned from New Year&#039;s Eves Gone Wrong</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-salvage-a-burnt-meal">10 Ways to Salvage a Burnt Meal</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> General Tips grammar Mistakes spelling Tue, 30 Sep 2014 11:00:08 +0000 Damian Davila 1222063 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Top 10 Retirement Planning Mistakes http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-top-10-retirement-planning-mistakes <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-top-10-retirement-planning-mistakes" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/retirement-planning-stress-176759357-small.jpg" alt="retirement planning stress" title="retirement planning stress" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some stellar articles on retirement planning mistakes, money rules that nobody will ever teach you, and budgeting on a variable income.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://christianpf.com/retirement-planning-mistakes/">Top 10 Retirement Planning Mistakes &mdash; Are You Making Any of Them?</a> &mdash; Are you making the retirement planning mistake of not saving enough? What about waiting too long to start saving? [Christian PF]</p> <p><a href="http://studenomics.com/personal-finance/secret-money-rules/">The Secret Money Rules That Nobody Will Ever Teach You</a> &mdash; Chances are, no one will teach you that you should always live within your means. [Studenomics]</p> <p><a href="http://kylieofiu.com/2014/09/budgeting-on-a-variable-income/">Budgeting on a Variable Income</a> &mdash; It is vital to gather all your bills and track your spending when you budget on a variable income. [Kylie Ofiu]</p> <p><a href="http://www.mightybargainhunter.com/one-person-responsible-financial-decisions/">The One Person Responsible for Your Financial Decisions</a> &mdash; Remember that financial advice, no matter how reasonable, is not one size fits all. [Mighty Bargain Hunter]</p> <p><a href="http://citi.us/1p0oTpk">6 Ways to Keep Your Top-Performing Millennials on Board</a> &mdash; Creating opportunities for international travel can help companies keep millennials on board. [Women &amp; Co]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.narrowbridge.net/get-off-the-grid/">How to Get Off the Grid</a> &mdash; To get off the grid, consider trying to grow your own food. [NarrowBridge Finance]</p> <p><a href="http://dontmesswithtaxes.typepad.com/dont_mess_with_taxes/2014/09/old-age-toll-physical-emotional-financial.html">Getting Old Sucks. We Can't Stop Father Time, But We Can Prepare Physically, Emotionally and Financially</a> &mdash; Are you taking advantage of how the tax code can help you in retirement? [Don't Mess With Taxes]</p> <p><a href="http://sweatingthebigstuff.com/ways-reduce-financial-stress/">4 Ways to Reduce Financial Stress</a> &mdash; If you want to reduce financial stress, create a budget and earn more money. [Sweating the Big Stuff]</p> <p><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Magic-Eraser-Uses-35760193">37 Creative Uses for Your Magic Eraser</a> &mdash; Use your magic eraser to remove stains on dishes and clean the inside of your oven. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/20-mostly-free-ways-to-enjoy-fall-with-your-family">20 Mostly Free Ways to Enjoy Fall With Your Family</a> &mdash; Enjoy fall with your family without breaking the bank by making hot apple cider and visiting a local farm. [Parenting Squad]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-top-10-retirement-planning-mistakes">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-tell-if-your-401k-is-a-good-or-a-bad-one">How to Tell if Your 401K Is a Good or a Bad One</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-occasions-when-you-should-definitely-hire-a-financial-advisor">7 Occasions When You Should Definitely Hire a Financial Advisor</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-incredible-places-to-retire-abroad-that-anyone-can-afford">5 Incredible Places to Retire Abroad That Anyone Can Afford</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-balance-saving-for-retirement-emergency-fund-and-paying-off-debt">How to Balance Saving for Retirement, Emergency Fund, and Paying Off Debt</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/just-saving-isnt-enough-how-cash-flow-allocation-helps-you-retire">Just Saving Isn&#039;t Enough: How Cash Flow Allocation Helps You Retire</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Retirement best money tips Mistakes retirement Wed, 24 Sep 2014 19:00:05 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1219314 at http://www.wisebread.com