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Raise Your FICO Credit Score

by Luke Landes

You may have been offered a credit score when you took advantage of the free credit report offer. CNN is offering tips for boosting that score. But first a note. Often, credit scores offered by the credit reporting agency are not true FICO scores — the ones mortgage companies use when contemplating your credit risk, ... Continue reading this article…

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Emergency Funds, Doing Okay?

by Luke Landes

We hear all the time how Americans are not saving enough for emergencies. The “Emergency Fund” is heralded as the first step in getting a sound financial footing, before thoughts about investing in stocks or making large purchases enter the brain. The idea of putting aside cash for a (very) rainy day has been a ... Continue reading this article…

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Carnival of Personal Finance #8

by Luke Landes

Welcome to this week’s Carnival of Personal Finance (basic introduction, schedule) and welcome to Consumerism Commentary (about, best of) to any new readers! This is the eighth installment of the Carnival. In this issue: Designer Pets. Free Money Finance discovers the latest craze for dog owners, crossing poodles with other breeds, giving us wonderful breednames ... Continue reading this article…

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Wallet of Plastic

by Luke Landes

It’s widely believed that the more credit cards you have, the better your credit rating. MSN Money, with the help of some experts, debunks that common misconception and recommenhds having two to six credit cards, and using them wisely: Keep your debt ratio low. Don’t carry a balance higher than 30 percent of the credit limit. ... Continue reading this article…

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Can’t Buy Me Happiness

by Luke Landes

Here is some common sense from Jeanne Sahadi: If financial success is important to you, and you are not as successful as those around you, you are not going to be as happy as someone who doesn’t care as much about financial success. In fact, setting financial success as a goal can make some people ... Continue reading this article…

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Wednesday Reading

by Luke Landes

Forbes takes a look at what the good life costs, with the “good life” being a nice house, good education for the kids, and a summer home. In the Northeast, my region of the country, it will cost at least $215,000 a year (after taxes and savings). That’s enough to make most families give up ... Continue reading this article…

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Time to Consolidate

by Luke Landes

I spent the last 45 minutes or so consolidating my student loans. I’m a graduate student, working on my Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Phoenix Online. Even though I have these loans, they get paid off as soon as I receive my reimbursement check from my company. However, when I first ... Continue reading this article…

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Carnival of Personal Finance #1

by Luke Landes

Welcome to Consumerism Commentary and the Carnival of Personal Finance! For an introduction to the Carnival, read this entry. For a schedule of upcoming Carnivals and their hosts, see this article. Below you will find the articles that have been submitted so far. The deadline was originally set for Sunday night at 10:00pm, but any ... Continue reading this article…

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