5 Tips for Starting a Business

Becoming self-employed can be very exciting and financially rewarding. However, there are plenty of financial issues that can overwhelm you.

Here are 5 tips to cut through the confusion of starting your own business:
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How Much Should You Spend in Retirement?

One of the biggest financial challenges we all face is how to accumulate enough money to last as long as we’ll need it during retirement. Once we pull the trigger and say goodbye to the working world, that doesn’t mean we can start spending like there’s no tomorrow. Moving from the accumulation phase into the spending phase of a retirement plan sounds really fun, but it has to be managed carefully so you don’t outlive your nest egg.

How Much Should You Spend in Retirement?

So, how do you know how much to withdraw from your portfolio each year during retirement so you don’t drain your finances? It’s a complex question because the answer depends on whether you have a guaranteed pension, how much you want to leave to your heirs, your health, the future state of the economy, and the performance of the financial markets.
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How Happy Couples Talk About Money

If you’ve ever had a fight with your spouse or partner about money, you’re certainly not alone. I’m sure you know that the majority of divorces and breakups are the result of conflicts about money.

What happy couples know is that there’s a right way and a wrong way to communicate about money. Even if you don’t see eye-to-eye about everything in your financial life as a couple, there is a way to find middle ground.
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Is It Better to Lease or Buy a Car?

Though the decision to lease or buy a car has financial implications—money isn’t the only factor you should take into consideration before you pull the trigger on a deal.

Your personal taste and lifestyle should also play a big role in whether you decide to buy or lease a vehicle.

What’s best for one person can be totally wrong for another when it comes to cars.

I’ll give you the major pros and cons for each side of the lease vs. buy debate, so you’ll know which option is right for you.
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How to Use a Coverdell Education Savings Account

Many people who are saving money for a child’s college education are familiar with 529 Savings Plans. But what if you want to send a younger child to private school? A 529 Plan only covers expenses for higher education. In this article I’ll tell you about a lesser-known tax-advantaged vehicle that you can use for any level of education—from kindergarten through graduate school—called a Coverdell Education Saving Account.
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Advice About Financial Goals and Saving for Retirement

This week I received a question from Sally P. She says:

I’m 32 years old, self-employed, and earn about $400,000 per year. I’ve saved $100,000 to buy a home but want to wait until I’ve saved a total of $200,000 to put down on a condo. The money is sitting in a savings account for now. I don’t have a retirement account and am wondering if I should fund one in addition to putting money aside for a condo. If so, how much should I invest and what type of account is best?

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When Can You Retire?

Have you ever wondered exactly when you’ll be able to retire? The answer to that question is no different than the answer to many questions in personal finance—it depends. There’s no right or wrong amount that you must have in your 401(k) or IRA. Nor is there a strict rule that says you have to stop working at age 65.

When Should You Retire?

I’ll offer a theoretical answer to when you should retire. If “retirement” means entering a phase of life where you stop earning income, then you can retire as soon as you have enough passive income ideas or assets to support the lifestyle you want for as long as you’re alive.
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Honey, I Forgot to Deduct the Mortgage Interest!

As the host of the Money Girl podcast, one of the most common questions I get from show listeners is about claiming the mortgage interest tax deduction–like this one from Alice:

If my husband and I forgot to take tax deductions for the past couple of years for our mortgage interest, what can we do? Is there a statute where you must use it or lose it?

What is the Mortgage Interest Tax Deduction?

If you’re not familiar with the mortgage interest deduction, it’s a great tax benefit for homeowners because it allows you to deduct the amount of mortgage interest you pay from your taxable income. If you’re a typical homeowner, you’re probably paying big bucks for your mortgage each year—so this tax deduction can save you a chunk of change by substantially lowering your tax liability.
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