Latest News https://wwfcu.org/blog/?p=2077 https://wwfcu.org/blog/donating-a-vehicle-tax-deduction/ Cars Taxes Tax Deduction Donating a Vehicle – Tax Deduction Do you have an old vehicle that’s been sitting in your driveway for years collecting dirt and rust? Maybe it’s the set of wheels you used in college or a minivan from when the kids still lived at home. You could sell it, but likely wouldn’t be worth the hassle. Instead, an easy way to Wed, 19 Jul 2017 21:11:17 Z Dan DeRoeck <p>Do you have an old vehicle that’s been sitting in your driveway for years collecting dirt and rust? Maybe it’s the set of wheels you used in college or a minivan from when the kids still lived at home. You could sell it, but likely wouldn’t be worth the hassle. Instead, an easy way to get it off your hands and squeeze the last bit of value out of it is to donate it for a tax deduction! There is a plethora of charities that will happily find a way to make some use of even the most rusty of rides.</p> <p><strong>Check If It Runs</strong></p> <p>Before you call up any charity, check to see if the vehicle will start. If it doesn’t, it may just need a jump. Take the time to give it a jump start, because if you can get it to run you’ll be able to write off a greater value on your tax return.</p> <p>If it still won’t turn over after you’ve charged the battery, don’t worry. You’ll have to choose from a narrower selection of charities, and you won’t get as much of a tax break, but you can still donate the vehicle. Many charities are capable of picking the vehicle up from your location; you’ll just have to schedule an appointment.</p> <p><strong>What You’ll Need</strong></p> <p>Some paperwork is required in order to transfer ownership of the vehicle to the charity. The first thing you’ll need to locate is the title; this is the document that specifies the owner of the vehicle. If the title is in your spouse’s name, you’ll need to ask the charity whether your spouse needs to be present for the transfer or if they can just sign a note. If it has been years since you acquired the vehicle, and you can’t find the title, visit a Secretary of State’s office for a replacement. In this case, whosever name is on the title, that person must be present or sign an Appointment of Agent form.</p> <p>If you took out an auto loan when you purchased the vehicle, you’ll also need a lien release from your lender. Typically, you’ll receive the release when you pay off the loan, but sometimes a lender neglects to send out the release.</p> <p><strong>Reporting the Donation</strong></p> <p>When you donate the vehicle, a charity will often use a value database like Kelley Blue Book to let you know the value of the donation. The IRS also accepts qualified appraisals, but if you’re donating an old vehicle, there’s not much sense in paying for one.</p> <p>For a deduction of more than $500, you need to obtain written acknowledgment from the charity in question. It should include your name and taxpayer identification number, the vehicle identification number, the date of the donation and a statement that no goods or services were received in exchange for the donation. When you file, you’ll need to fill out IRS Form 8283. For more information about filing requirements, see IRS Publication 4303.</p> <p>Remember, a deduction reduces your taxable income, not your tax amount. For example, if you donate a vehicle worth $2,000, it will reduce your taxable income by that amount. If you’re in the 28 percent tax bracket, you’ll pay $560 less in taxes.</p> <p>Don’t forget to remove the license plate!</p> <p>Original Source: http://lmcu.frc.finresourcecenter.com/Auto_Buying_78855.html?article_id=2363</p> 2017-07-19 21:11 +00:00 2017-07-19 17:11 -04:00 https://wwfcu.org/blog/?p=2070 https://wwfcu.org/blog/when-your-plans-go-awry/ Uncategorized holidays travelling When Your Plans Go Awry When leaving home for a vacation, most people experience a slight nervousness. “What if something goes wrong?” they ask themselves. Usually, it’s a concern that’s quickly forgotten when they reach their final destination. However, for an unlucky few, sometimes vacations do go “south”. Here are some situations you may run into while abroad, and how Sun, 02 Jul 2017 12:55:52 Z Dan DeRoeck <p>When leaving home for a vacation, most people experience a slight nervousness. “What if something goes wrong?” they ask themselves. Usually, it’s a concern that’s quickly forgotten when they reach their final destination. However, for an unlucky few, sometimes vacations do go “south”. Here are some situations you may run into while abroad, and how to make the best of them.</p> <p><strong>Poor Weather</strong></p> <p>When most people travel, they generally hope that it’s going to be sunny and warm; or at least that it won’t be storming. But, it’s always a possibility, even if the locale hasn’t seen rain in 100 years. If you’re on a sightseeing trip and the rain isn’t too heavy, don a poncho and check out the landmarks anyway. The unique atmosphere may lend itself to a stronger memory! Otherwise, look for indoor attractions. Are there any museums in the area? Sometimes architecture is just as remarkable as nature.</p> <p>If you took a trip to a tropical resort specifically to enjoy beautiful weather, the situation may seem more hopeless. Fear not¾there’s a solution. Unless you bought out the entire resort for yourself, the other travelers will be just as forlorn when looking out the windows. Nothing builds camaraderie quite like shared misery. Strike up a conversation about the weather and ask them where they’re from. Before you know it, everybody will be painting the hotel red.</p> <p><strong>Illness or Injury</strong></p> <p>Unlike unfavorable weather, illness or injury has a better chance of putting the kibosh on a good time. The most important thing to do in this situation is to stay calm and seek adequate medical care. If you’re in unfamiliar territory, the staff at your accommodation will likely be able to help you get what you need. Make sure you keep the hotel phone number handy, just in case something happens while you’re away.</p> <p>Once your medical situation has been dealt with, anyone along for the trip who isn’t sneezing or bleeding might spend some time trying to recoup costs from upcoming activities on your itinerary. If you had any tours booked or nights left at the hotel, you may be able to get a refund or partial refund, especially if you explain the situation.</p> <p><strong>Losing Your Luggage</strong></p> <p>Getting separated from your bags is a huge bummer. If you made a few connecting flights and your stuff never turns up on the carousel when you finally arrive, it might seem like a bad omen for the rest of your trip. Don’t worry¾it’s probably just delayed. Either way, immediately file a claim that your baggage was lost so that you start a paper trail. If you’re traveling within the U.S., you should also know that the Department of Transportation requires airlines to compensate you for their contents up to $3,300.</p> <p><strong>Robbery</strong></p> <p>When traveling, do your best to keep a low profile. Don’t flash money or expensive purchases around. Also, try to avoid secluded areas, especially at night. The best way to deal with robbery is to prevent it. If it can’t be avoided, comply with any requests in order to avoid violence. Your wallet is not more important than your life.</p> <p>Once you’re back to safety, report the robbery to local police. They may be able to help you get in contact with your embassy in order to replace any important documents that were stolen, like your passport.</p> <p>More than likely, you won’t have to deal with any of these troubles. However, it’s always better to be prepared!</p> <p>Original Source: http://lmcu.frc.finresourcecenter.com/Travel_78930.html?article_id=2385</p> 2017-07-02 12:55 +00:00 2017-07-02 08:55 -04:00 https://wwfcu.org/blog/?p=2066 https://wwfcu.org/blog/introducing-your-kids-to-credit-and-debt/ Kids child to the concept of credit and debt introducing finance to kids kid debt and credit Introducing Your Kids to Credit and Debt The concept of credit is enormously broad, as well as enormously important. It’s only natural that the idea of introducing it to your kids is accompanied by apprehension. After all, their credit and debt habits will have a profound impact on their lives. If you start early with some engaging simulation of real-life finances, you Sun, 21 May 2017 12:50:14 Z Dan DeRoeck <p>The concept of credit is enormously broad, as well as enormously important. It’s only natural that the idea of introducing it to your kids is accompanied by apprehension. After all, their credit and debt habits will have a profound impact on their lives. If you start early with some engaging simulation of real-life finances, you can be sure they’ll go on to manage their credit carefully.</p> <p><strong>Start With Easy Ideas</strong></p> <p>Before you introduce the idea of credit, start with the concept of earning money. Set up a system of chores that are worth different amounts of money based on how much time they take or their difficulty. Connecting different values to different tasks is important because it sends home the idea that income is earned better than an arbitrary end-of-week allowance. Once your child buys their first cheap toy that breaks quickly, you can be sure they’ll know the value of a dollar. Provide them with a piggy bank so they can save or “hold” money themselves.</p> <p><strong>Introducing Interest</strong></p> <p>Once your child is comfortable with the idea of earning and saving money, you can familiarize them with the concept of interest. Ask if you can borrow some money, since they’re just “holding” it. You’ll put it to good use then give it back at the end of a month. At the end of the month, you’ll also pay them something extra for the privilege of having borrowed the money. Make sure you give them an IOU, or “bond,” that you’ve both signed with all the details. Offer enough “bonds” so that the idea sticks, but be careful about the rates you offer, or you might end up owing more than you expected!</p> <p><strong>Financing</strong></p> <p>Interest is fun when you’re the creditor, but it’s important to also learn about being the debtor. When they’re a little bit older and have some more money, offer your child the opportunity to finance something reasonably small, like a $50 video game. Instead of paying $50 when they get it, they’ll pay for it a week at a time — $13 a week for five weeks. Chances are they’ll quickly figure out how much more they’re paying than if they would have just saved up the $50.</p> <p><strong>Credit Scores</strong></p> <p>Credit scores don’t lend themselves easily to such practical examples. However, if you’ve implemented either of the above “games” with success, it should be easy to explain the idea of a credit score. You can start by asking how they might assess whether an adult they don’t know is trustworthy enough for them to lend money for a “bond.” There are lots of potential answers, but none are so simple and comprehensive as the idea of credit reporting and credit history. From there, as your child grows into maturity and begins taking on jobs while attending high school, you’ll be able to discuss the actual system that determines a person’s FICO score, and how they can start building good credit.</p> <p><strong>Lead by Example</strong></p> <p>Another way to introduce your child to the concept of credit and debt, once they’re nearing the end of their high school career, is to explain a part of the family financial situation, like the car payment. Why did you choose that rate? How did the payments fit into your budget? Opening financial discussions will help prepare them for the real situations they’ll soon be dealing with, like student loans.</p> <p>By the time preapproved credit card offers with outrageous rates start arriving in the mail on your child’s 18th birthday, your mind can be at ease. He or she will already know how to handle them!</p> <p>Original Source: http://lmcu.frc.finresourcecenter.com/Loan__Credit_Management_78913.html?article_id=2279</p> 2017-05-21 12:50 +00:00 2017-05-21 08:50 -04:00 https://wwfcu.org/blog/?p=2030 https://wwfcu.org/blog/words-of-warning-about-playing-the-market/ Investments investments market rules Words of Warning about “Playing the Market” Everyone has heard a story at one time or another of someone’s friend of their cousin’s roommate who “played the market” and hit it big. There are countless books written by successful traders who give general advice on how people can replicate the same success that they have achieved. Every day there’s news about movement Tue, 29 Nov 2016 13:06:06 Z WWFCU <p>Everyone has heard a story at one time or another of someone’s friend of their cousin’s roommate who “played the market” and hit it big. There are countless books written by successful traders who give general advice on how people can replicate the same success that they have achieved. Every day there’s news about movement on the stock market, and people murmur about how “someone, somewhere” must have made a killing. It can seem like there’s a fortune to be had if you just know the right rules or strategies. That idea couldn’t be further from the truth.</p> <p><img class="alignleft size-medium wp-image-2043" src="https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Playing-the-Market-300x200.png" alt="playing-the-market" width="300" height="200" srcset="https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Playing-the-Market-300x200.png 300w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Playing-the-Market-63x42.png 63w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Playing-the-Market-120x80.png 120w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Playing-the-Market.png 500w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" /></a></p> <p><strong>“Technical” Analysis</strong></p> <p>When people look for “secret stock market rules,” what they have in mind falls under the umbrella of “technical analysis.” Proponents of technical analysis claim there’s no need to look at a business’s financial statements, as all the necessary information is contained in its price history data. This data is to be interpreted with a myriad of techniques involving various indicators, “candlestick patterns” and market pseudo-psychology. Some proponents will claim that there’s no need to even know the actual price level or timeline: if you show them an unlabeled chart, they believe they can tell you if it’s going up or down.</p> <p>“Technical analysis” is an example of confirmation bias: people pay attention only to results that confirm their beliefs and ignore the ones that are contradictory. Don’t fall for this costly trap.</p> <p><strong>Seminars, Mentors and Proprietary Trading</strong></p> <p>If you start looking around for trading advice, you’ll quickly stumble upon allegedly “once-in-a-lifetime” and “one-of-a-kind” seminars or mentorships that claim they will teach you to be financially independent through trading. Usually there’s an ex-trader or two that run the whole thing and they’ll provide all sorts of software and live mentorship to “help” you make millions in the stock market. They usually charge somewhere in the neighborhood of $3,000 to $5,000, sometimes more. The sales pitch will make it seem like that’s pocket change compared to the life-changing dough you’re about to pull down once you learn to look for the right technical analysis patterns.</p> <p>You may also see job postings for entry-level proprietary trading positions. These are usually billed as work-training programs where they’ll teach you to trade full-time. All you have to do is put up $25,000 starting capital. They’ll be a little more up front about the risks involved, but still push the idea of endless piles of cash if you’re “disciplined” enough to stick to the program.</p> <p>Both of these “opportunities” are outright scams.  You will lose all of the money you paid, possibly more. The truth is that no one knows any special patterns that are foolproof determinants of which way a stock is going to trade tomorrow. Any such knowledge would be tantamount to knowing the future. Hedge fund managers who have studied the stock market for the better part of their lives struggle to beat the market. If there really were any such “strategy” for success, you can be sure they would be employing it for better returns than they’re currently reporting.</p> <p>If you want to “play the market” and do some active trading, that’s okay. Just be clear with yourself that you’re essentially gambling and don’t use any more money than you would be comfortable taking to the casino.</p> <p>Original Source: <a href="http://kineticcu.frc.finresourcecenter.com/Savings_Calculator_99026.html?article_id=2185">http://kineticcu.frc.finresourcecenter.com/Savings_Calculator_99026.html?article_id=2185</a></p> 2016-11-29 13:06 +00:00 2016-11-29 08:06 -05:00 https://wwfcu.org/blog/?p=2033 https://wwfcu.org/blog/should-you-be-using-a-digital-wallet/ Banking Apps digital wallet Should You Be Using a Digital Wallet? If you bought a smartphone in the last year or two, you may have noticed that it touted digital wallet technology. If so, you probably wondered why you would switch from whatever system is working for you now. Digital wallets are catching on more slowly than expected, but you can expect to see and hear Mon, 28 Nov 2016 00:56:04 Z Dan DeRoeck <p>If you bought a smartphone in the last year or two, you may have noticed that it touted <a href="https://wwfcu.org/online-services/going-mobile/mobile-banking">digital wallet</a> technology. If so, you probably wondered why you would switch from whatever system is working for you now. Digital wallets are catching on more slowly than expected, but you can expect to see and hear more about them in the next few years. They claim to offer convenience and added security. But should you take the plunge?</p> <p><img class="alignleft size-medium wp-image-2037" src="https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Digital-Wallet-300x211.jpeg" alt="Digital-Wallet" width="300" height="211" /></p> <p><strong>What Is a Digital Wallet?</strong></p> <p>Although the term “digital wallet” technically has a broad meaning, these days it almost always refers to the storage of payment credentials on your phone for use at brick-and-mortar stores, as well as for internet purchases. Near field communication technology, or NFC, allows you to simply hold your phone near a payment terminal, authenticate the purchase and be on your way.</p> <p>Digital wallets keep all your cards in one place. Some of them also keep your various loyalty, rewards and coupons in one place — and pull up the right ones just as you need them.</p> <p><strong>The Late Bloomer</strong></p> <p>Unlike smartphones and MP3 players, technologies that the public quickly embraced, digital wallets haven’t gained much traction yet. The key reason? A self-perpetuating cycle: point-of-sale (POS) terminals with the required NFC technology were expensive to upgrade to and in low demand from consumers, so only a few retailers actually accepted digital wallets. And because using digital wallets as a payment method wasn’t widely accepted, few consumers bothered to set it up, keeping demand for the technology low.</p> <p>Enter a possible game-changer. Credit card companies set October 2015 as a deadline for retailers to upgrade their POS terminals to models that include chip readers. Since that date, any retailer without chip-reader compliance will be held liable for fraudulent transactions. This has created a huge incentive for retailers to upgrade their terminals, and many are upgrading with models that include NFC technology. In another year or two, it could be pervasive.</p> <p><strong>Security Concerns</strong></p> <p>A consensus among tech and security bloggers is beginning to develop that digital wallets are safer than credit cards. If you lose your credit card or hand it to an unscrupulous clerk, your credit card number is as good as compromised. Digital wallets store your information behind multiple layers of security, including encryption, your fingerprint and a complex process called tokenization. Tokenization prevents your actual card number from being skimmed by a third party by utilizing dummy numbers. So, even if your phone is lost or stolen, it will be very difficult for anyone to access your personal information.</p> <p>There is one major security caveat. Some, but not all, financial institutions transfer individual responsibility of fraud to their customers if they choose to use a digital wallet.</p> <p>Should you make the switch? First, check with your credit union, bank or credit card company to see if you’ll still be protected from fraud if you use a digital wallet. If that’s the case, it may be worth a try. Unfortunately, NFC isn’t ubiquitous yet, so you’ll still have to carry cards for occasions when you visit retailers that haven’t upgraded yet. Nevertheless, you can take pride knowing you’re leading the technological tide!</p> <p>Original Source: <a href="http://palisades.frc.finresourcecenter.com/Consumer_Resources_148443.html?article_id=2191">http://palisades.frc.finresourcecenter.com/Consumer_Resources_148443.html?article_id=2191</a></p> 2016-11-28 00:56 +00:00 2016-11-27 19:56 -05:00 https://wwfcu.org/blog/?p=2017 https://wwfcu.org/blog/who-can-you-trust-with-your-assets-when-youre-gone/ Financial Guidance a will beneficiaries trust beneficiaries will estate tax your will Who Can You Trust With Your Assets When You’re Gone? A will isn’t the only way to transfer your assets upon your death. Trusts are a useful tool that can be used to achieve a maximum amount of control over how your assets will be distributed among your loved ones and other beneficiaries. Trusts may also reduce the amounts spent on probate court and estate Thu, 27 Oct 2016 14:58:53 Z WWFCU <p>A will isn’t the only way to transfer your assets upon your death. Trusts are a useful tool that can be used to achieve a maximum amount of control over how your assets will be distributed among your loved ones and other beneficiaries. Trusts may also reduce the amounts spent on probate court and estate taxes.</p> <p><strong>So, Just What Is a Trust?</strong></p> <p>A trust is a fiduciary agreement that allows a third party to hold assets on behalf of a beneficiary. That third party may be any adult who is competent and has no felony convictions. However, it’s a good idea to select someone who has an adequate knowledge of asset transfer and is impartial — like a lawyer, accountant or trustee service.</p> <p>A trust will either be revocable or irrevocable. A revocable trust allows you to maintain control of your assets while you’re still alive. You may make changes at any time to how the assets will be distributed upon your passing. While a revocable trust will often prevent assets from having to pass through probate, it’s still subject to estate taxes. Once you’re gone, it becomes an irrevocable trust, and no changes can be made.</p> <p>You may also set up an irrevocable trust while you’re alive. Doing so requires that you give up control over the assets within. Once it’s executed, the trust is no longer part of your estate and, therefore, in addition to avoiding probate, its assets will generally not be subject to estate tax (depending on the laws in your state).</p> <p>It’s worth noting that a trust does not replace a will. Trusts usually deal with specific distribution of specific assets, whereas a will governs your entire estate a bit more generally. Think of a trust and a will as two pieces of a whole.</p> <p><strong>How to Set Up a Trust</strong></p> <p>It’s possible to form a trust on your own with the help of some software with detailed instructions. Expect to do a lot of legwork getting documents notarized. However, there are many different kinds of trusts, and laws regarding the different kinds vary widely from state to state. So, for anything other than the simplest of trusts, it’s a good idea to enlist the help of an expert. Find a reliable estate attorney to help guide you through the establishment of a trust. It’s common to use the same attorney to set up both your will and trust.</p> <p><strong>When to Get a Trust</strong></p> <p>The rule of thumb for when to set up a trust in addition to a will is when your net worth totals more than $100,000. You can expect the costs of estate planning to be a few thousand dollars, but you’ll save (or, rather, your beneficiaries will save) a great deal by avoiding probate, and reducing the estate tax to a (legal) minimum. There will also be fees to administer the trust after you have passed away, but if you have significant assets, the fees will pale in comparison to the savings.</p> <p>Even if you don’t have a substantial net worth, a trust could still be useful if you have assets you want distributed in a specific way over time. For example, you may have $25,000 that you want distributed to a grandchild in $5,000 increments over the course of five years. Just be sure that the setup and administration fees don’t eat up the assets you’re trying to protect.</p> <p>A trust is a great tool to ensure that your valuable possessions end up where you want them. There is some cost involved in setting up and administering a trust, and it requires planning, but once set in motion, you can trust that you’ll rest easy.</p> 2016-10-27 14:58 +00:00 2016-10-27 10:58 -04:00 https://wwfcu.org/blog/?p=1980 https://wwfcu.org/blog/unique-mortgages-for-every-situation/ Home Loans Buying a new home Home Loan loan refinance Unique Mortgages for Every Situation Our partner, Mortgage Center, offers a variety of mortgage options that other lenders cannot. These Credit Union Exclusive Programs have been designed to bridge the gap in conventional loans, so that you can find the loan program that is best for you. Here are just a few of the exclusive programs available to you: Condominium Wed, 21 Sep 2016 20:49:19 Z WWFCU <p><img class="wp-image-1985 size-medium alignright" src="https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/HomeLoan-300x196.jpg" width="300" height="196" srcset="https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/HomeLoan-300x196.jpg 300w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/HomeLoan-768x501.jpg 768w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/HomeLoan-1024x668.jpg 1024w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/HomeLoan-1200x783.jpg 1200w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/HomeLoan-64x42.jpg 64w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/HomeLoan-123x80.jpg 123w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" /><br /> Our partner, Mortgage Center, offers a variety of mortgage options that other lenders cannot. These Credit Union Exclusive Programs have been designed to bridge the gap in conventional loans, so that you can find the loan program that is best for you. Here are just a few of the exclusive programs available to you:</p> <ul> <li>Condominium Loans are the right choice for community living.</li> <li>The Right Choice Home Loan can be the right choice for you if you have less than perfect credit. Mortgage Center can work with you!</li> <li>Golden Jumbo is for properties that exceed conventional loan limits.</li> <li>A Hobby Farm Loan is for members interested in raising livestock or growing crops for fun.</li> <li>The One-Time Close Construction Loan allows you to build a customized home and make interest-only payments during construction. Once your home is completed, the loan will automatically convert to a conventional mortgage.</li> <li>Maximum Cash-Out Refinance – take advantage of the equity you’ve built today!</li> <li>Smart Choice Refinance – offers the ability to consolidate your 1<sup>st</sup> and 2<sup>nd</sup></li> <li>PMI Saver – avoid the extra expense of Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI).</li> <li>Doctor Loan – offers medical doctors, who have a minimum of 6 months medical residency remaining, to exclude deferred student loans from their Debt to Income (DTI).</li> </ul> <p><a href="https://wwfcu.org/products-services/loans/home-loans"><em><strong>Read More</strong></em></a></p> <p>Mortgage Center also offers members traditional loans including fixed-rates, adjustable rates (ARM), FHA financing, and much more. Call 888-562-6865 to speak with a Mortgage Center loan expert to start your no-cost prequalification today.</p> <p><em><strong><a class="banner_button" href="https://www.mortgagecenter.com/apply-online"target="_blank">APPLY ONLINE TODAY</a></em></p> <p>Mortgage Center NMLS# 282701</p> <p><a href="https://www.mortgagecenter.com/" target="_blank"><img class="alignleft wp-image-1981" src="https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/Logo_HomePage.png" alt="logo_homepage" width="150" height="111" srcset="https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/Logo_HomePage.png 325w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/Logo_HomePage-300x222.png 300w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/Logo_HomePage-57x42.png 57w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/Logo_HomePage-108x80.png 108w" sizes="(max-width: 150px) 100vw, 150px" /></a></p> <p><img class="alignleft wp-image-1982" src="https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/equal_housing_opportunity.jpg" alt="equal_housing_opportunity" width="50" height="50" srcset="https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/equal_housing_opportunity.jpg 425w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/equal_housing_opportunity-150x150.jpg 150w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/equal_housing_opportunity-300x300.jpg 300w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/equal_housing_opportunity-250x250.jpg 250w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/equal_housing_opportunity-42x42.jpg 42w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/equal_housing_opportunity-80x80.jpg 80w" sizes="(max-width: 50px) 100vw, 50px" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> 2016-09-21 20:49 +00:00 2016-09-21 16:49 -04:00 https://wwfcu.org/blog/?p=1991 https://wwfcu.org/blog/how-to-choose-the-right-budgeting-and-accounting-solution/ Money Management Accounting Solution Budgeting solution manage accounts How to Choose the Right Budgeting and Accounting Solution Keeping your personal budget and accounting organized is necessary to ensure any kind of financial security. Managing such accounts and budgets down to the individual transaction is, at best, a tedious task if handled the traditional pen-and-paper way. Fortunately, help is available. The option you choose will depend on whether you’re an excel monkey — Tue, 20 Sep 2016 15:53:37 Z WWFCU <p>Keeping your personal budget and accounting organized is necessary to ensure any kind of financial security. Managing such accounts and budgets down to the individual transaction is, at best, a tedious task if handled the traditional pen-and-paper way. Fortunately, help is available. The option you choose will depend on whether you’re an excel monkey — comfortable with math, formulas and spreadsheets — or a people person who prefers to work with an expert.</p> <p><a href="https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/AdobeStock_38948692.jpeg"><img class="alignnone size-medium wp-image-1993" src="https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/AdobeStock_38948692-300x199.jpeg" alt="Budgeting-and-Accounting" width="300" height="199" srcset="https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/AdobeStock_38948692-300x199.jpeg 300w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/AdobeStock_38948692-768x510.jpeg 768w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/AdobeStock_38948692-1024x680.jpeg 1024w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/AdobeStock_38948692-1200x797.jpeg 1200w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/AdobeStock_38948692-63x42.jpeg 63w, https://wwfcu.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/AdobeStock_38948692-120x80.jpeg 120w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" /></a></p> <p><u><strong>Your Electronic Friend: Specialty Software</strong></u></p> <p>There are a myriad of purpose-made “plug-n-play” applications for personal bookkeeping and budgeting. These products can automate alerts for bills due and account balances, as well as provide a real-time view of all your linked accounts. Some applications organize your expenses into categories, while others merely keep a running list of transactions.</p> <p>You’ll have to trust the service with your financial and personal information, understanding that these products are often web-based. But, as long as you use a reputable, time-proven product, you can feel reasonably assured that your information will be safe. If you’re still unsure, check the service’s security policy.</p> <p><u><strong>For the People Person: Financial Planners</strong></u></p> <p>If you’re not financially savvy, a financial planner could help you work out behaviors, plans and a lifestyle to get yourself on track. These professionals are especially helpful when you have medium- or long-term financial goals and don’t have any idea how to meet them. Think of a personal trainer at the gym who guides your workouts and nutrition. Instead of counting your calories, a financial planner will help you count your greenbacks.</p> <p>There are many different types of financial planners, so make sure you know your goals going in. To make sure the one you’re seeing can help you, ask them to describe their typical customer — before you tell them your goals. This will help you discern the planner’s expertise and if the planner is well versed in what you need. There’s a difference between someone who specializes in helping people budget for their first home and someone who specializes in wealth management.</p> <p>Beware though: Sometimes planners will try to sell you financial products. Ensure that your planner is “fee-only,” which means they only get paid based on the advice they give you, and don’t receive any kickbacks. Make sure that whoever you hire has a fiduciary duty to you. A fiduciary will be legally obligated to give you only the best advice.</p> <p><u><strong>For the Computer Savvy: DIY with Spreadsheets</strong></u></p> <p>If you’re into building your own analytics, this option is for you. The possibilities here are endless. You can connect expenses, incomes, habits and goals to analyze and plan with specificity. This is beyond the capability of most purpose-built software. Fair warning: it will require a bit of math and a free weekend to set up. However, even if you’ve never used a spreadsheet before, you can get the hang of it after just a few tutorials.</p> <p>For example, if you’re somewhat obsessive about your health and your diet, you could record the foods and beverages you consume, then sort out how much of each macronutrient you’re getting from each item. You’ll then be able to analyze the cost-efficiency of those calories, and whether you can consume different combinations of food for a less expensive, more well-rounded diet.</p> <p>While spreadsheet tools are comprehensive enough that you could practically recreate some of the purpose-built software, you should avoid the temptation. Even the most die-hard Dyer would do well to reserve spreadsheets for situations that require a specific need. Building an entire solution will probably be unwieldy (in comparison to purpose-made software) and very time consuming.</p> <p><u><strong>Mix and Match for Best Results</strong></u></p> <p>There is no perfect all-in-one solution. For most people, a combination of two or more of the above options will be ideal.</p> 2016-09-20 15:53 +00:00 2016-09-20 11:53 -04:00 https://wwfcu.org/blog/?p=1968 https://wwfcu.org/blog/useful-tips-for-buying-a-used-car/ Car Fax Car Loans Cars Tips auto loan best used car loan buy a used car Useful Tips for Buying a Used Car If you’re considering replacing your vehicle, have you considered purchasing a used one? The perception of used cars can be somewhat negative. That’s why the market-friendly term “pre-owned” is now more widely used (forgive the pun). However, shopping for a used car can be tricky because every car has a unique, and often hidden, history. Fri, 16 Sep 2016 11:53:52 Z WWFCU <article class="inside breaker">If you’re considering replacing your vehicle, have you considered purchasing a used one? The perception of used cars can be somewhat negative. That’s why the market-friendly term “pre-owned” is now more widely used (forgive the pun). However, shopping for a used car can be tricky because every car has a unique, and often hidden, history. The following advice should help you navigate safely through a minefield of lemons.</article> <article class="inside breaker"></article> <article class="inside breaker"></article> <article class="inside breaker"> <p><strong>Look for a Car That Fits</strong></article> <article class="inside breaker"> <p>Make a list of the features and qualities that you need from the car. For example, do you drive long miles and require good fuel efficiency? Then, make another list of what you’d like. It’s okay to go after a few bells and whistles or sleek styling, but only after you’ve determined the vehicle will be able to meet your driving demands. These lists will help you pick a few models to investigate. Lastly, do a quick online search to see if any of your chosen models have had major recalls.<strong>History Repeats Itself</strong></p> <p>If the car you’re looking at has had problems in the past, it will probably have similar problems in the future. Ask the owner or dealer for the car’s VIN number so you can check its history. There are a number of companies that keep records of incident reports, like AutoCheck and CARFAX., Sometimes report details vary by company, so be sure that you don’t miss anything, it’s a good idea to check the VIN with more than one company.Needless to say, if the seller won’t provide a VIN, you shouldn’t spend any more time looking at the car. No matter how sweet the car appears on the outside, you don’t want to gamble on what’s under the hood.</p> <p><strong>Do Your Own Due Diligence</strong></p> <p>Have the vehicle checked out. It’s possible that there has been a recent problem or issue that hasn’t been reported yet. Ideally, you would bring it to a mechanic you trust. If this isn’t a possibility, then bring a knowledgeable friend or a vehicle inspection checklist (easily found online) to over the car.</p> <p><strong>Finding Fair Prices</strong></p> <p>Compare the listings from the National Automobile Dealer’s Association, Edmunds, and Kelley Blue Book to get an idea of what you should be paying. Actual prices will probably vary, but you’ll have a starting point for negotiation.</p> <p>If you have a smartphone, check to see if there are any used car pricing apps available. These apps collect information about what other users have recently paid for the same or similar model cars. The results can be hit-or-miss if there’s not much data available, but if there is, then you’ll be in a stronger negotiating position. You might even find some better deals.</p> <p><strong>Try Before You Buy</strong></p> <p>If everything else seems to check out, take the car for a test drive or two. You want to see how it fares in as many common traffic situations as possible. Take it up to speed on the highway to check for brake alignment or wheel defects. Drive in a city during rush hour to put the transmission through its paces. A slow drive through a neighborhood will let you experience the car’s handling.</p> <p><strong>A Word About Warranties</strong></p> <p>Many of the cars that you look at will have certification or a warranty. Don’t rely solely on these read the fine print  to see what’s actually covered. And remember: even if you trust the seller or dealer, don’t skimp on your own inspection.</p> </article> 2016-09-16 11:53 +00:00 2016-09-16 07:53 -04:00 https://wwfcu.org/blog/?p=1906 https://wwfcu.org/blog/ways-businesses-can-save-on-credit-card-processing-fees/ Credit Cards Tips credit card fraud Ways Businesses Can Save on Credit Card Processing Fees Small Business could miss out in sales in case they decide not to accept payment using credit cards. In 2014, 35% of consumers preferred credit cards over any other type of payment. Some small business build the cost of accepting credit card in the final price of goods. Instead, there are ways businesses can save Fri, 26 Aug 2016 15:48:16 Z WWFCU <p>Small Business could miss out in sales in case they decide not to accept payment using credit cards. In 2014, 35% of consumers preferred credit cards over any other type of payment.</p> <p>Some small business build the cost of accepting credit card in the final price of goods. Instead, there are ways businesses can save on credit card processing fees.</p> <p>In order to minimize the impact of those costs, the business can implement a minimum for consumers to use credit cards. Post your new rule prominently by the cash register and inform your employees of the change.</p> <p>Credit card processing companies have to compete to attract and keep clients just like any other business. Some offer a lower rate to lure in new customers, it is worth to look for the best deal for you business.</p> <p>Ask other businesses in your area what they are using, or search in the Better Business Bureau (BBB) about credit card processing services.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>KEY TAKEAWAYS:</p> <ul> <li>Credit card processing fees can vary depending on the company you choose &#8211; it pays to shop around to find the best deal.</li> <li>Small fees can make a huge difference to your bottom line over the long haul.</li> <li>Before you sign up to use anyone’s service, make sure you understand their fee structure and how it works.</li> </ul> <p>&#8220;When faced with a purchase minimum to use credit, consumers can either turn to cash or spend more – both options that benefit your business. If customers opt for cash, you’ll avoid credit card processing fees altogether. But if they spend a bit more so they can use credit, the extra revenue can help offset credit card processing fees.&#8221;</p> <p>Original Source:</p> <p>http://www.thesimpledollar.com/how-small-businesses-can-save-on-credit-card-processing-fees/</p> 2016-08-26 15:48 +00:00 2016-08-26 11:48 -04:00