How Your Credit History Can Cost You on Car Insurance – Get Your Auto Insurance Score

car insurance accident claimAuto insurance scores are finally starting to share some of the limelight with credit scores. Consumers are learning more about what this other credit scoring model is and how it could potentially raise or lower car insurance costs.

So what exactly is an auto insurance score? Here’s the lowdown on how auto insurance scores work, how “fair” are they, and what you should do about yours to improve your situation.

Why Does My Credit Affect How Much I Pay For Auto Insurance?

That’s the question most people wonder about auto insurance scores: how on earth is their credit rating related to their car insurance?

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5 Easy Home Improvement Projects & Upgrades For the Winter

paintIf you’re like most people, you’ve been spending a lot of time indoors lately. Unfortunately, there are several more months of winter to get through before we start seeing signs of spring.

Before you throw your hands up in despair, why not break the monotony by working on your house? After all, you’re stuck inside anyway, and you’re probably searching for something to do that doesn’t involve watching endless reruns of Glee while eating any carb that will stand still. Plus, some home improvement projects will increase your property value, save money on your utility bills, and potentially prevent larger, more expensive issues from developing.

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10 Steps for How to Get an Internship or Summer Job for College Students

How To Get A Summer Job Or InternshipIt’s January – which means it’s time to start working on getting a summer job or internship, especially if you’re currently a college student.

That’s right. If you’re planning on scoring a temporary job this year to gain some experience, now is the time to get started on the process. And the process, from the moment you decide that you want or need a summer job to the moment you accept an offer, can be stressful and challenging.

By starting early and following these 10 steps, you can greatly increase your chances of landing the perfect internship.

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Shred Your Credit Card and Win Over $1,000 in Cash Prizes

shredded paper credit cardsIf you’re like many Americans, one of your New Year’s resolutions for 2011 is to get out of debt and stop using those darn credit cards.

So how is it working out for you so far?  Are you able to follow through on your promise?

A great way to get some extra help in ridding yourself of consumer debt is to cut up your credit cards and shred them up – literally. If you don’t physically have the card, you’re obviously not going to be able to use it.

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How to Buy a Foreclosure Home or Property From a Bank – 5 Questions to Ask

foreclosure home for saleBuying a foreclosed house can be a very rewarding experience if you do your research diligently. I know because I was lucky enough to purchase one in the summer of 2010, after many months of house hunting. A new property is a huge investment for most people and as such, should be considered carefully.

In this article, I’ll summarize some of the key questions to think about before deciding to sign a purchase contract for a foreclosure. I’ll also add some of my own personal anecdotes and share parts of my experience. If you’re interested in buying a foreclosure home, these points are important to consider and can help you build a healthier financial portfolio.

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Personal Finance Round-Up: Making The Best Of A Bad Situation

frustrated manSometimes in life, we find ourselves in positions that may feel awkward and undesirable but is often necessary. For example, I’m sure that with the foreclosure rate in the US steadily climbing, many people are finding themselves in these very situations. They’ll need to do something about it even if it means swallowing their pride and moving back into their parents’ house.

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Dangers of Plastic Food Containers, Water Bottles, and Bisphenol A (BPA)

Do you ever think about all the plastic in your kitchen?

You probably have an entire drawer full of stuff, including reusable plastic containers that you use to store and reheat leftovers. After all, these things are handy. They’re lightweight, they store easily, and they’re cheap.

What’s not to love?

The Dangers of Plastic

What many people don’t think about is that many of their plastic dishes and storage containers are leaching chemicals into their food, especially if they’re using #3 or #7 plastics, or any hard plastic that’s “shatterproof.” These plastics contain Bisphenol A (BPA), a chemical that, once ingested, mimics estrogen in our bodies.

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Cost of Home Birth vs. Hospital Birth – Is Natural Home Birthing with a Midwife Right For You?

newborn babyI’m really fascinated by birth stories. It’s absolutely exciting to hear how a baby enters the world and all the circumstances surrounding the event. While I’ve heard some great stories, the most interesting ones involve home births. I’m intrigued by the concept, but I’m also a little hesitant to pursue such an endeavor myself.

All of that aside, another thing I often wonder about home births is whether or not they are cost effective. Even without taking birth location into account, having children takes financial consideration. After all, you’ll want to plan for the best time to have a baby.

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New Job Hunt Dilemma – Stable Jobs with Salary or High Paying Jobs on Commission?

climb corporate ladderWould you rather have a stable job with lower income, or a position with fluctuating, but potentially higher income? This is something my family and I have wrestled with a few times over the past 3 years. Now, we’re in that position again. It takes a lot of consideration to sort through all of the variables in order to make the right choice for our family and our future.

Fixed vs. Variable Income

Most people who are self-employed or work in sales earn some form of commission that allows them to make more as they sell more. You can earn a lot more than most standard salaries by working hard and providing good service.

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Penny For Your Thoughts: My Family Thinks I’m Cheap at Christmas

This post is part of our “Penny For Your Thoughts” column where readers can write into Penny with their dilemmas on money and relationships. If your question is chosen for the next Penny For Your Thoughts column, you will receive a $20 Amazon Gift Card. In addition, one commenter who offers the best advice will receive a $15 Amazon Gift Card.

baby christmas giftsDear Penny,

My family goes all out for Christmas – spending into the realm of ridiculousness. Sometimes it seems to be quantity, not quality, and it’s almost too overwhelming for the kids!

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