Personal Finance FAQs

  1. What's the difference between an individual retirement account (IRA) and an annuity?

  2. What's the difference between an individual retirement account (IRA) and a certificate of deposit (CD)?

  3. What are the different types of private mortgage insurance (PMI)?

  4. What's the difference between private mortgage insurance (PMI) and mortgage insurance premium (MIP)?

  5. Why is Social Security running out of money?

  6. How can I avoid paying private mortgage insurance (PMI)?

  7. What's the difference between IRS Forms 1040EZ and 1040A?

  8. Can my spouse and children collect my Social Security when I die?

  9. Can moving to a higher tax bracket cause me to have a lower net income?

  10. What's a better way to borrow money: overdraft or credit cards?

  11. What are the pros and cons of overdraft protection?

  12. How Can I Fund A Roth IRA If My Income Is Too High To Make Direct Contributions?

  13. How Long Should I Keep My Tax Records?

  14. If I don't have any kids and want to leave all of my worldly possessions to my dog, how would I do it?

  15. How do I list the beneficiaries of my life insurance policies if I have a trust?

  16. If I want to have some cash in a liquid account for unexpected emergencies, what is best? A savings account or another type?

  17. How are capital gains and dividends taxed differently?

  18. Are 401(k) loans taxed?

  19. What is pay-as-you-drive auto insurance?

  20. What is an annuity?

  21. If a LEAP option is purchased and held for more than 12 months, is the tax treatment long term?

  22. How does the government spend my taxes?

  23. What is the difference between a credit report and a credit score?

  24. Who is eligible for student loan forgiveness?

  25. What is an asset?

  26. What exactly is a startup?

  27. What is a reasonable amount of debt?

  28. Can my insurance company refuse me coverage?

  29. What pension benefits are available to military personnel?

  30. When buying a car, is it better to have a trade in or a down payment?

  31. What should you do when you're five years from retiring?

  32. Why do some companies pay a dividend, while other companies do not?

  33. What are the differences between a 401K and an IRA?

  34. Does paying my utility bills on time improve my credit score?

  35. How old should you be to get life insurance?

  36. Besides a savings account, where is the safest place to keep my money?

  37. How do I retire?

  38. Suppose my garage collapsed onto my car. Are damages covered by my home insurance or auto insurance?

  39. What credit cards offer the lowest interest rates?

  40. Why should I pay myself first?

  41. I want to transfer my house title to my child, what are the costs and tax consequences of doing so?

  42. Why do interest rates change?

  43. What are Government Pension Offsets, and who is subject to them?

  44. How do you plan for retirement if you have multiple employers? Can you combine retirement plans from multiple employers?

  45. What are the biggest factors that can affect my credit score?

  46. My daughter would like to use some of her Roth IRA to pay for some current tuition fees and loans. Can she do this without a penalty?

  47. I have a 403(b) from a old employer. I would like to convert it to a 401(k). How can I do that?

  48. What is the relationship between inflation and interest rates?

  49. If you have a house that is under your company name and you want to sell it back to yourself, do you have to pay capital gains taxes?

  50. Should I pay my mortgage with my credit card to earn credit card rewards?

  51. Our broker switched firms in the middle of 2011. As a result we lost track of our required minimum distribution (RMD) amounts and ended up withdrawing much more than our RMD. Is there a way to defer some of the withdrawal to 2012 to avoid the tax liabilit

  52. Where do most fund managers get their market information?

  53. If my mortgage lender goes bankrupt, do I still have to pay my mortgage?

  54. What happens during the consolidation phase of an investor's life cycle?

  55. How can I use layaway plans for budgeting?

  56. What does deflation mean to investors?

  57. What is the double taxation of dividends?

  58. How are life insurance proceeds taxed?

  59. How can I start an IRA for my child?

  60. What changes might I need to make to my insurance policy?

  61. Am I responsible for fraudulent charges on my credit card?

  62. What is the difference between qualified and non-qualified plans?

  63. What is evergreen funding?

  64. Which investment would be most suitable for a client investing for retirement and seeking protection from purchasing power risk in the future?

  65. What effect did the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 have on debtors?

  66. What was Robert Citron's role in Orange County, California's bankruptcy?

  67. How much money do I need to start trading?

  68. The reason why ERISA qualified plans should have an investment policy statement is to:

  69. When and why did brokerages switch from fixed commissions to negotiated ones?

  70. A parent would choose to set up a Coverdell Education Savings Account for a child in order to save for college expenses AND:

  71. How are bonds rated?

  72. How do 401(k) loans work?

  73. What are the exceptions to the premature withdrawal penalty rules for IRA accounts?

  74. Can I refuse a gift by providing a "Qualified Disclaimer," and what does this entail?

  75. What is a tax-free 1035 Exchange?

  76. I have a profit-sharing plan with my former employer. I am now trying to buy a home. Can I use my profit-sharing money to put a down payment on a house?

  77. When is it a good idea to use an irrevocable life insurance trust?

  78. What does a "5 by 5" power in a trust document mean?

  79. Why do you need an emergency fund?

  80. What is a "wash sale"?

  81. What are the requirements to be able to contribute to an HSA?

  82. How does an employer benefit from a 401(k) matching plan?

  83. Because I missed a few credit card payments, the issuer raised my interest rate from 9.9% to 19.9%. What should I do?

  84. Why is accidental life insurance so inexpensive?

  85. Is life insurance good for mortgage protection?

  86. How do I know if I qualify to open a HSA (Health Savings Account)?

  87. Should I collect early Social Security?

  88. What is the "stretch IRA" concept?

  89. My mortgage payments are no longer affordable; is there anything that I can do to prevent foreclosure?

  90. How much life insurance should I have?

  91. Why is Game Theory useful in business?

  92. The real rate of return is the amount of interest earned over and above the:

  93. What are the distribution options for an inherited annuity?

  94. What are the pros/cons of naming a trust as the beneficiary of a retirement account?

  95. Which constitutional amendment made income tax legal?

  96. Is it wise to consolidate credit card debt?

  97. Should computer software be classified as an intangible asset or part of property, plant and equipment?

  98. What is PMI, and does everyone need to pay it?

  99. What happens to insurance policies and variable annuities if the insurance company itself goes bankrupt - do the policyholders get anything out of it?

  100. How do I know if I should refinance my mortgage?

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