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How to Avoid Too Much Student Debt

How to Avoid Student Debt

Back to School It’s that exciting time of year when high school seniors have decided on where they’ll head for college in the fall. At the same time, many juniors begin to apply to the colleges of their dreams. A school’s academic rigor and programs, student-to-teacher ratios, athletic opportunities, size and location are all important considerations when identifying a good fit. So is cost — especially if your child plans to take out student loans. The best way to help your child avoid...

Lending Money to Family Members

Is it a good idea to lend money to family members

Is it Ever a Good Idea? It’s harder than ever for young adults to save and get ahead in our current economy. Modest incomes and college loans make it tough to assemble enough cash to purchase a car or make a downpayment on a house. It doesn’t help that credit standards have tightened, putting bank loans out of reach for those without a strong credit history. It’s no wonder people are looking to family members for some financial help, and while you may...

Expiring Tax Deduction may Hurt Homeowners in 2014

Mortgage Interest Tax Deduction Expired December 31 2013

Eliminating certain tax deductions available exclusively to homeowners has been the topic of discussion for a few years now. The biggest target has been on the back of the Mortgage Interest Deduction that allows a homeowners to deduct the interest paid on a home loan from your taxable income, if you itemize your 1040 tax return. It seems that a new threat of higher housing costs is upon us. I found this great excerpt from the turbotax site that lists what homeownership associated...

Mortgage Insurance Tax Deduction Reinstated?

mortgage insurance tax deduction

UPDATE:  On January 1st, 2013, the mortgage insurance tax deduction was extended - Click here to see the update A proposed bill approved by the Senate Finance Committee on August, 2nd 2012 is asking for reinstatement of the mortgage insurance deduction that was discontinued as of January 1st, 2012. Enacted in 2006 as part of a legislative stimulus plan, homeowners with an adjusted gross income of less than $100,000 could write off 100% of their mortgage insurance premiums. This tax deduction was reduced...

Top 10 Celebrity Estate Planning Mistakes

Don’t feel like reading?  Listen to this article instead! I have been writing about Living Trusts for the past  several weeks, and I just recently came across an article from BusinessInsider.com that I found interesting. The article featured Trial & Heirs' Top 10 Celebrity  Estate Planning Mistakes.  I found them interesting and thought I would share the article with you. The point of all this is to recognize the mistakes of others so that we won’t repeat them. 1. Jimi Hendrix's Critical Error: Doing Nothing If...

Steve Jobs Had a Living Trust

For the past couple of weeks, I have been writing about Living Trusts, which is why I found the below article very interesting. As I’m sure you’re very aware by now, Steve Jobs passed away on October 5, 2011. Shortly after his passing, Forbes.com had an article titled, Steve Jobs Appears To Have Protected His Estate With Living Trusts.  What follows below are excerpts of what I found interesting in the article. _____________________________ Soon after the tragic news broke of the passing of Steve...

Living Trust Keeps Home Out of Probate?

For the last few weeks, I have been discussing the importance of having a Living Trust. One of the major reasons people chose to establish a Living Trust is to avoid probate. Probate can be a very time-consuming and costly experience for your beneficiaries. What happens to someone’s home when he/she/they pass away all depends on how title is held. ______________________________ If you own title to your home and don’t have a will or a Living Trust, then your home will go through the probate...

How to Protect Minor Children with a Living Trust

A Living Trust can protect minor children by giving you the power to make important decisions. As a financial advisor, one of the topics that comes up a lot when meeting with people is death. Nobody, including myself, wants to dwell on the topic of death, but for better or worse, it is going to happen to most of us someday. My hope for all of us is that it happens after a well lived life, but tragically however, most of us know...

Living Trust: Why it’s so Important to Have

A Living Trust is important to have for many reasons.  One of the most important reasons to have a Living Trust is to avoid probate. Probate proceedings are legal proceedings, that are a matter of public record, and are used to wind up a person's legal and financial affairs after death. In California, probate proceedings are conducted in the Superior Court for the county in which the decedent lived.  A “normal” probate process without any glitches can take about eight months.  Some...

What is a Legal Document Assistant?

Having completed all the requirements under the California Business & Professions Code section 6450, I am now a Legal Document Assistant under California Law. ____________________ What is a Legal Document Assistant? Formerly called Independent Paralegals, beginning January 1, 2001, California Law redefined “paralegal” to mean only those that work for and are supervised by attorneys. A Legal Document Assistant (LDA) is an experienced professional who is authorized under California law to prepare legal documents for consumers.  However, an LDA is not an attorney and...

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