Personal Finance

Saving for the Unexpected

According to a July 2021 Bankrate study, 25% of Americans surveyed have no emergency fund. An emergency fund acts as a buffer that you can use without relying on credit cards or high-interest loans in the event of an unexpected expense or life event.  If there is anything that the last 2 years have taught…


Changes to Child Tax Credits in 2021

Effective July 15, the IRS will start issuing child tax credits on a monthly basis to eligible families as part of the American Rescue Plan.  This enhanced Child Tax Credit expands the benefit from a $2,000 credit up to $3,600 per child. Who is eligible? Qualifications for this increased credit is based on your income…


Health Care Costs and the American Rescue Plan

On March 11, 2021 the American Rescue Plan (ARP) was signed into law to offer financial assistance and economic stimulus for those effected by the Covid-19 pandemic.  Some of the many elements of the plan address health care costs for 2021 and 2022.  Following is a summary of some of the health care cost savings…


Unemployment Fraud and the Pandemic

The rate at which personal information is being used to file fraudulent unemployment benefits has been accelerating in recent years, and the pandemic environment provided the perfect opportunity for bad actors to amplify their effort. In fact, the Labor Department Inspector General estimates that roughly 10% of the federal funding for unemployment during the pandemic…


What Else is a Respectable Credit Rating Good For?

Much has been said about maintaining a good credit history and high credit score.  But often overlooked is the fact that it can affect more than your ability to qualify for a mortgage or get the best interest rates on credit cards or auto loans.  Here are a few other things your credit score can…


How to Remove Items From Your Credit Report

By Giancarlos Merced, Outreach Specialist, Credit is an important part of most people’s lives. It lets lenders know how trustworthy you are with borrowing money. This includes everything from a personal loan to a big financial commitment like a home mortgage. Yet, in 2020, a lot of people still have no idea how their…