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Back to School Shopping Tips

Back to school deals are everywhere
In most parts of the country school starts next month and that means it’s time to start thinking about back-to-school shopping. A recent Deloitte survey concluded that most families can expect to spend an average of $501 per student this year. Of course that includes supplies and clothing but it all adds up and holiday spending isn’t too far ahead either.

Saving Money on Teen Drivers

Teenage Drivers
Having a teenager in the house is always challenging and one of the great rites of passage for any young person is getting a driver’s license and sometimes a car to go with it. While this frees the parents from having to drive their children everywhere with busy high school and extra-curricular schedules, it also creates a whole new set of worries and financial realities to deal with.

Tax Tips for the 2nd Half

Midyear Tax Tips
It probably feels like you just filed your taxes a few weeks ago but with the year half way over July is not a bad time to start thinking about taxes and see where you might be able to make some financial improvements for next year. Did you get a big refund this year? Remember that the government doesn’t pay interest and that was your money to begin with. If you owed taxes and especially if you owed penalties you should also review your finances to avoid being penalized again this year.

How to Make it in the “Gig Economy”

Short term real estate rentals for extra income
If you constantly find yourself scrambling each month to come up with extra cash after the bills have been paid or you don’t have enough money for investing and are looking to increase your earnings, you might be considering a “side-gig”. By some estimates 1 in 4 Americans have second jobs to bring in extra income.

Start Thinking About Holidays Now

Summer is a great time to plan for holidays
It might be hard to believe but as of tomorrow Christmas 2017 will be closer than last Christmas. In about 2 months some retailers will start decorating their aisles and selling merchandise and the bombardment of Black Friday advertising won’t be far behind.

Best Cities to Live in 2017

Rochester, MN - Best City to Live in 2017
When summer comes and the kids have a break from school many families spend some time evaluating their options in terms of careers and places to live. The possibilities are potentially endless and many people might be looking to improve their quality of living or just move somewhere with a lower cost of living. has conducted a study of more than 2,000 cities in the U.S.

What to Shop for This Month

Power tools and garage organization
School is out and most families are looking for ways to save money this month. Stores have already started advertising back-to-school savings but beyond that there are many ways to save in June with smart shopping and don’t forget, Amazon Prime Day is only 1 month away with savings on all kinds of products.

7 Ways to Save this Month:

Gift Ideas for Dad

Amazon Echo - perfect for Dad
Father’s Day is just a few weeks away so even if you scored points with Mom just a couple of weeks ago it’s time to start thinking about gifts again. What dad might want most is just a phone call or a card (even though he’ll never tell you that) you can really be a hero by picking up something terrific this year instead of the usual barbecue tools, necktie, or generic gift card.

Here are 6 great gift ideas to make dad proud on Father’s Day:

Stay Safe this Summer

Summer Safety
Summer is a great time to relax and slow down a bit. Whether you are staying home or going on vacation this summer, you still need to be vigilant about financial safety and protect your finances.

Here are 6 tips to protect your money this summer:

Refresh Your Home for Summer Guests

Outdoor living spaces increase your home's value
Summer is almost here and that means longer days and more time spent around the house and for many people, family visits and outdoor entertaining. This is a great time to be thinking about home improvement projects to make you home more enjoyable on those long, hot days.

Here are 6 great projects to consider getting started on over the long weekend ahead: