Girls and Money: Six Important Steps to Take Right Now

Business / Ask Carrie /

Dear Readers: Did you know that Oct. 11 is the International Day of the Girl Child? Designated an official international day by the United Nations, its goal is to focus attention on the particular challenges girls face worldwide, encourage programs that empower girls and celebrate the achievements of girls.

So what does this have to do with ...Read more

Tips for Helping Elderly Parents With Their Finances

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Dear Carrie: My parents are in their early 80s. Fortunately, they're in relatively good health and still quite independent, but I want to help them be prepared should things change. How can I get involved with their finances without being intrusive? -- A Reader

Dear Reader: While popular wisdom might say that 80 is the new 60, the reality of ...Read more

Attention Ask Carrie Editors: The Following Column Was Originally Published In 2014. Thank You For Your Attention. -- Creators

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Do You Have to Pay Income Taxes on Social Security Benefits?

Dear Carrie: From what I've read, if a married couple has annual withdrawals from 401(k) plans, individual retirement accounts or pensions that exceed ...Read more

Here's How You Can Help Teachers Meet the Financial Education Challenge

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Dear Readers: What do dinosaurs and virtual reality have to do with financial education? A lot, according to teachers who responded to the most recent financial education Innovation Challenge sponsored by the Charles Schwab Foundation in partnership with DonorsChoose. The challenge asked entrepreneurial K-12 teachers to come up with innovative...Read more

Are Your Kids' Extracurricular Activities Straining Your Budget?

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Dear Carrie: I'm the mother of a very creative 12-year-old daughter who wants to take classes in art, drama and dance, but I have a limited income. While we live a comfortable life, paying for all these extras is a real stretch. I don't want to disappoint her, but I'm struggling. How can I handle this on top of everything else? -- A Reader

...Read more

Can You Spend Money on Fun Without Feeling Guilty?

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Dear Carrie: I'm feeling a little overwhelmed by all the things I need to save for. From retirement and emergency funds to my son's college account and home repairs -- on top of trying to pay extra on the mortgage and student loans -- I feel as if I have very little left over for anything else. I know these bigger things are important, but ...Read more

How Can Couples Max Out Social Security Benefits?

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Dear Readers: Are you and your spouse nearing that magic age when you can file for Social Security benefits? If so, you've got a lot to think about. Because while waiting longer to file generally means a higher monthly benefit, with a little planning, couples may be able to optimize their benefits in the short and long term.

Of course, there'...Read more

10 Steps to a DIY Financial Plan

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Dear Readers: Did you know that 78% of people with a financial plan pay their bills on time and save each month versus only 38% of people who don't have a plan? That's a pretty powerful statistic, if you ask me. Or would it surprise you to learn that 68% of planners have an emergency fund, while only 26% of nonplanners are financially prepared...Read more

Is It Time to Declutter Your Finances?

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Dear Carrie: I am trying to simplify my finances and have way too many accounts (savings, checking, brokerage, credit cards). What happens when you close an account? Is that bad to do? -- A Reader

Dear Reader: Decluttering is certainly a popular concept these days. So why not apply it to our finances? While we all start out thinking we'll ...Read more

Should You Tap Your 401(k) to Fund Your Down Payment?

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Dear Carrie: My husband and I are trying to scrape together enough money for a down payment on our first home. Because we live in an expensive real estate market, we need to be creative and consider all our potential resources. Would it be OK if we borrowed from our 401(k)s? -- A Reader

Dear Reader: How exciting that you're buying your first...Read more

Is Social Media Ruining Your Finances?

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Dear Readers: If I asked you how much time you spend on social media each day, would you answer honestly? Chances are most of us spend more time perusing popular platforms like Facebook and Instagram than we'd like to admit. According to the Pew Research Center, in America, around 7 in 10 adults use social media to connect with friends and share...Read more

How Should Millennials Save for Retirement?

Business / Ask Carrie /

Dear Carrie: I'm 28 and have a good job. My company offers a 401(k), but I haven't signed up yet -- mostly because I don't understand if it's the best move. I know I should be saving for retirement, but it seems so far in the future, and I have other things I need to cover. Also, I probably won't stay with this company forever, so it seems ...Read more


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