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December 16, 2017

Women in agriculture are challenging stereotypes
(BPT) - About a third of the nation's farmers are women, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. And most of these women are working family farms, since 99 percent of all American farms are family-owned and operated. Just under 1 million women farmers contribute $12.9 billion to the nation... More >>


22 million strong: 4 ways to make VA loans work for you
(BPT) - If you're a veteran, active military member or reservist, you've likely heard about all the benefits offered with VA home loans.Since 1944, some 22 million vets have taken advantage of the powerful U.S. program enabling affordable low-interest mortgages that require no down payments, no mor... More >>


The time is right to seek new income opportunities
(BPT) - Whether you plan to watch the ball drop in Times Square this New Year's Eve or be in bed by 10 p.m., one thing is certain: a new year is coming, and with it comes a chance for change. It's a time to reflect on what works best for you and reset your course for the coming year. Research shows... More >>


New ways renters are becoming homeowners
(BPT) - Sponsored Content from Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance, Inc.The world that millennials have grown up in is a lot different than the world the Gen Xers and Baby Boomers knew. The digital revolution, widespread use of smartphones and adoption of disruptive technologies such as ride sharing an... More >>


Tips to protect yourself from online shopping scams this holiday season
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Growing need for ag expertise: Not all high-paid careers are on the farm
(BPT) - (BPT) - As the farming industry faces growing consolidation in the U.S., one might get the impression fewer jobs are now available in agriculture.In fact, just the opposite is true. Today, one in three people worldwide - more than a billion employees - work in an ag-related industry.Industr... More >>


5 Must-know Investing and Retirement Tips
(BPT) - Parents and grandparents typically pass down many things to the next generation - jewelry, furniture and other family heirlooms. But what if the best thing that the preceding generation passed along was their financial wisdom? Through years of investing and saving for retirement, Baby Boome... More >>


Top trends for the 2018 housing market identified
(BPT) - In the real estate market, springtime is go time. It's the busiest time of the year for home sales, and with this year's stable economy and low unemployment rate, the spring of 2018 has the potential to be especially active.Every market is defined by its trends, and while each year is diffe... More >>


5 strategies for protecting your valuables
(BPT) - Home is your sanctuary, your castle, the place where you feel the most secure and protected. It is natural to feel this way. So, it is not surprising that you store your prized possessions and valuables at home as well. But is that the best choice for all your valuables?The recent wildfires... More >>


5 tips for working adults returning to college
(BPT) - Most working professionals want to advance their skills, land that promotion and get a raise. However, some 36 million adults face a significant barrier to achieving their goals and aspirations: They still need to complete a significant amount of coursework in order to earn a college degree... More >>


5 ways digital natives are giving our lives a mobile makeover
(BPT) - Their heads may be buried in their smartphones, but don't be fooled; the youngest generation is changing the world as we know it, one emoji at a time.According to recent findings from the Bank of America Trends in Consumer Mobility Report, Generation Z - the youngest generation - and millen... More >>


The hidden dangers of oversharing on social media
(BPT) - Locking doors and windows and leaving a light on used to deter criminals from breaking into homes when you were away on vacation, but our obsession with sharing photos and experiences in real time on social media has created a whole new security risk for travelers. According to Mercury Insu... More >>


Buckle up for the new passenger economy
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5 hacks to save time and money during the holidays
(BPT) - The holidays are a wonderful time of year to spend with family and friends, and to reconnect with those you may not often see. However, the festive season can also be a busy and expensive time. By January, many are left feeling exhausted physically, emotionally and financially. But don't le... More >>


Beyond the diploma: Helping teens forge their futures
(BPT) - What's the key to optimism? From a career standpoint, it's having a vision where you see yourself climbing and thriving, and you know there will be a place in the world for your skills and knowledge.Unfortunately, there are many teens and young people who have a much bleaker vision of their... More >>


Buying life insurance can be complicated. But it doesn't need to be
(BPT) - Getting insurance can be famously complex and time-consuming. Whether it's life, health, automobile or home, it takes time to understand what coverage you need and how to get it. As a result, it's easy to put off items that don't feel truly urgent until it's too late.Buying life insurance a... More >>


FICO Score: Why it matters and what you can do to change it
(BPT) - For anyone who has tried to borrow money to purchase a car, buy a home or open a revolving line of credit, you may be familiar with the term FICO Score. The vast majority of lenders use this scoring model, which essentially determines a person's creditworthiness."The FICO Score may seem lik... More >>


5 questions about applying for disability benefits
(BPT) - Age and chronic illness can take a toll. A June 2017 study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention finds that the most costly health conditions in the U.S. include: heart disease, cancer, arthritis, stroke and type 2 diabetes. An estimated 117 million people have one or more chron... More >>


Time-saving tricks that save hours each week
(BPT) - When you look at your to-do list, does it seem a mile long? From running errands, returning emails and making hurried trips to the ATM, modern life has never been busier for Americans.You can reclaim your day by using a few simple time-saving methods. By simplifying common tasks, you can op... More >>


Winter is coming: 3 reasons why you need to install winter tires
(BPT) - Winter brings unpredictable and dangerous road conditions, yet changing out all-season tires for winter tires isn't high on our priority list. No matter the type of vehicle you drive, tires are the only connection between a vehicle and the road. Improper tires put drivers at a higher risk o... More >>


Step-by-step game plan to save the most on Black Friday
(BPT) - Pretty much every American knows that Black Friday and Cyber Monday are big days for sales. But for many, Black Friday is more than just a chance to save big; it's a tradition in its own right.And this isn't a trend that's going away anytime soon.In fact, the age group that is into Black Fr... More >>


Don't get hooked: Know warning signs of a phishing scam
(BPT) - Half of the world's 7 billion inhabitants use email, generating 269 billion emails per day in 2017, according to technology market research firm The Radicati Group. Email is so commonly used in business and personal interactions that it's also become a prime avenue for scammers to attempt t... More >>


5 steps to making annual enrollment the most wonderful time of the year
(BPT) - It's that time of year again. But before you plan your Thanksgiving menu or check off your gift list, it's time to think about employee benefits.VSP Vision Care surveyed employees about their attitudes around that special time of year when they must choose a benefits package and found that ... More >>


Home smart home: Boost your home IQ with smart appliances
(BPT) - If you think a Jetsons-like home of the future is still a ways off, think again. Today's smart home is here offering simple ways for consumers to operate their home, adding the ultimate in efficiency, convenience and enjoyment. It's easier than you think to create a connected home that lets... More >>


A New Kind of Life Insurance for Those Living with Diabetes
(BPT) - For people living with diabetes, the condition is a part of their everyday life and one that impacts many of their decisions, from balancing what they eat to taking care of their health. One area that might not be top of mind for people living with diabetes is life insurance. That's because... More >>


5 auto insurance myths you've been wrong about all along
(BPT) - Most drivers 'know' for certain just two things about car insurance: they're required by law to have it, and it's expensive. Beyond that, there's a lot of confusion and a lot of misconceptions, according to a recent survey by The Zebra, an online auto insurance search engine that recently i... More >>


5 myths keeping millennials in their parents' basements
(BPT) - Millennials are often called 'perennial renters,' yet studies show they are not only planning to own a home one day, but they expect to own multiple throughout their lifetimes. Many people incorrectly assume these 'boomerang kids' are moving home due to laziness when they're actually doing ... More >>


Looking for a Medicare Part D plan? Consider these 3 things
(BPT) - Many people are surprised to find out that Original Medicare doesn’t cover prescription drugs. For help with the cost of your medications, you can choose a standalone Part D plan or a Medicare Advantage plan with prescription coverage, but navigating your options can be complicated.With Med... More >>


Don't get hacked! Time to get serious about password safety
(BPT) - We all know hiding your house key under the doormat is a terrible idea, but we do it anyway because it's a convenient backup. When it comes to safeguarding passwords, especially in a family setting, people often choose convenience over safety.As families manage their digital information and... More >>


Picking a health insurance plan? Prepare for the unexpected
(BPT) - As many Americans know, fall is the season when we must select our health benefits for the upcoming year. Choosing a health plan can be a daunting task, but selecting the right coverage protects you and your family’s general health needs and can prepare you for an unexpected medical crisis.... More >>


Friends and money don't mix: Money cited as a key cause of stress in friendship [Infographic]
(BPT) - Many consumers admit they would rather talk to their friends about nearly anything - including their love life or family drama - than money. People would rather trip and fall in public than ask a friend to pay them back. One solution? Forty-one percent of millennials say that sending money ... More >>


Paving the way to college: 4 things parents need to know
(BPT) - Senior year: It’s a time to finish college applications, solidify friendships and look forward to the freedom and the responsibility that come once that final bell rings. A lot of feelings surface during that final year, especially for parents. While your son or daughter might be overjoyed ... More >>


'Tis the season: Holiday gifting and budgeting strategies [Infographic]
(BPT) - The Coinstar Holiday Survey, conducted among 2,000 U.S. adults, reports that the majority (65 percent) will set a budget this holiday season. The holiday infographic showcases results including budgeting and shopping strategies, creative gift giving, the 'Scrooge' effect as well as ways to ... More >>


Find Medicare Confusing? Start Here
(BPT) - Navigating Medicare can be challenging. In fact, according to a 2017 UnitedHealthcare survey, nearly 40 percent of Medicare beneficiaries find the program confusing. Learning the basics can help you cut through the confusion and make an informed decision about which coverage option may be t... More >>


Small businesses have struggled to find funding: Not anymore
(BPT) - In business, dreams are easy. Finding the money to make them happen, however, can be difficult.Even established, successful businesses can get turned away for loans at banks. This was the case for Sole Bicycles, a popular maker of stylish, high-performance bikes based in Venice Beach, Calif... More >>


Easy ways to make your data, and your dollars, go further
(BPT) - Wireless providers would love for you to believe that a modern lifestyle requires an endless, unlimited stream of data; and by the way, they'd love to sell it to you! On its face, there's probably nothing wrong with this assumption. Just think about how much of your day is spent on data-dep... More >>


Freelancers: Are you grabbing the best possible tax relief?
(BPT) - If you earn all or part of your income these days from freelance or contract work, you're far from alone.A CNN report this year estimates some 34 percent of the U.S. workforce is now part of the so-called gig economy, a segment expected to reach 43 percent - representing some 7.7 million wo... More >>


3 reasons to consider a group legal plan
Being a parent is a balancing act. You are constantly being pulled in different directions and it can be challenging to manage all the things you need to get done. Your company's open enrollment period is a chance to take stock of benefits that can help you manage some of the issues you face. One o... More >>


5 steps to prepare for open enrollment
(BPT) - Millions of Americans will select or switch their health benefits plan during open enrollment, so now is the time to prepare for that decision that usually happens once a year.More than 70 percent of Americans say they are prepared for open enrollment, yet most people struggle to understand... More >>


Why IRAs are an important part of the retirement planning mix
(BPT) - There are so many questions people have — no matter their age or stage in life — about saving for retirement: When is the right time to start saving? How much should I be putting aside? What are the savings vehicles I should be using? While the answers vary for everyone, depending on their ... More >>


Embracing the awkward: Why you should pay back your friend (and how to do it right)
(BPT) - Spending time with friends is rewarding and fun, but things can become tricky when money is involved. Almost everyone has that friend who conveniently heads to the restroom when the check arrives at a group dinner; or regularly 'forgets' his or her wallet on a coffee run claiming they'll pi... More >>


Don't be misled by these down payment myths
(BPT) - Confused about how much you need for a down payment on a house? You're not alone.Whether it's your first time buying a home or you've been around the block, calculating the right amount for a down payment can be a challenge. Many admit that accumulating down payment funds is one of the more... More >>


All home warranties are not created equal
(BPT) - Having a home warranty is a smart way to help deal with the inevitable home repair problems that all property owners face at one point or another.After all, a good home warranty can mean getting expert help when your HVAC system needs to be fixed, your water heater needs to be replaced, or ... More >>


House hunting and credit: What you need to know
(BPT) - By now it is something of a cliche to call homeownership the American dream. But even if sitting on your own deck, looking over your picket fence and sipping lemonade doesn't move you, homeownership is still one of the best ways to build wealth.For many, owning a home is cheaper than rentin... More >>


Be safe while getting social to avoid social media scams
(BPT) - For many people, social media has become a part of our daily lives. We follow friends on Facebook, share our opinions on Twitter and highlight our latest creative projects on Instagram or Pinterest. According to Statista, 78 percent of all Americans have a social media profile, and that ado... More >>


An Empty Nest Is the Time to Grow Your Nest Egg [Infographic]
-(BPT) - SaveSave... More >>


How to save on healthcare costs in 2018
(BPT) - (BPT) - Your cable bill, entertainment expenses, grocery extras - these often top the list when people sit down to discuss where they can save money.One expense you should consider in 2018 is your healthcare costs. Since autumn marks the beginning of the annual open enrollment period for em... More >>


Open Enrollment Is Here: Get the Scoop on FSAs and HSAs
(BPT) - Learn more about Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) and Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) with Visa.Save... More >>


Tips for choosing the Medicare plan that's right for you
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5 unexpected ways life insurance protects your loved ones
(BPT) - More than half of Americans who own life insurance say they purchased it primarily to cover final expenses if something happens to them, according to the 2016 Life Insurance Barometer study. Yet one in four also say they don't think they have enough life insurance - and the mistaken assumpt... More >>


How to lower your monthly mortgage payment
(BPT) - Owning your own home comes with many advantages, including escaping rising rents and the personal and financial stability associated with homeownership. Fortunately, millions of Americans, with less than 20 percent down, have been able to buy a home sooner thanks to mortgage insurance (MI).... More >>


Keeping up with the digital natives [Video]
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3 steps to help freelancers and gig economy workers avoid a tax blunder
(BPT) - More and more people are earning extra cash by freelancing in the sharing economy. That may mean writing on the side, playing music on the weekends, driving for ride-sharing services like Uber or Lyft or selling handmade jewelry on Etsy. No matter how the money flows in, gig economy earners... More >>


You can make retirement happen [Infographic]
(BPT) - Many of us intend to plan and save for retirement, but feel too overwhelmed to act. A new survey from AARP and the Ad Council found that many people are financially savvy in other areas of their life - from coupon clipping to vacation planning - and could apply these same smarts when it com... More >>


Traveling soon? Tips to stay sharp and avoid fraud
(BPT) - If your suitcase is full, don't worry - protecting yourself from fraud doesn't mean more packing.But it does mean you should prepare for the challenge of keeping your personal info safe. According to an Experian(R) survey, 20 percent of respondents had sensitive information like credit or d... More >>


Debunking home ownership myths for millennials
(BPT) - We've all been told, that owning a home is part of the American dream. It's the biggest and most rewarding investment many people will make in their lives. Instead of paying rent every month and having nothing to show for it, paying a monthly mortgage builds equity and wealth.While most kno... More >>


5 mistakes millennials make when it comes to credit
(BPT) - If you're a millennial, you've probably heard enough of grumpy Baby Boomers and Gen Xers grumbling about how lazy the kids are these days or how the younger generation doesn't have a work ethic or has a sense of entitlement.Yes it's true the older generations, who grew up at a time when col... More >>


Tips to achieve the retirement you want [Infographic]
(BPT) - With only 31 percent of middle-income boomers feeling well prepared for retirement, it's safe to say many will face a set of unprecedented financial obstacles in their later years. To achieve the retirement you want, consider the following tips. Save... More >>


Shop for health care with these websites and apps
(BPT) - As our nation seeks solutions to help improve the health care system, there is at least one goal we can all agree on: the importance of making health care quality and cost information more accessible.This is an important effort that has the potential to help improve health outcomes and make... More >>



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