FrugalWorld

A collection of freebies, sweeps, coupons, frugal tips and more… updated daily with resources to save you time and money.

News: Guide to 7 Top Tax Software Programs, 2017

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The tax software business is getting as crowded as the cereal aisle at your local grocery store, and that’s good news for do-it-yourself taxpayers. New entrants are offering deals, forcing veteran players to up their game or lower their prices.

The best tax software for you will depend on your sources of income, your need for help, and your budget. It’s important to review each platform’s terms before you start plugging in your numbers. Otherwise, you could discover that you can’t complete your return without upgrading to a pricier product.

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News: How to Get Money Back When You Turn in a Leased Vehicle

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Q: I’m about to turn in my leased Mazda. The lease specified a limit of 10,000 miles a year for three years, but I’ve driven the car only 16,000 miles. Does the lower mileage give me any negotiating leverage if I want to lease another Mazda?

A: It might. “Because of the low miles, there’s a good chance there is equity in the lease, meaning the lessee could walk away with money in his pocket,” says Ron Montoya, senior consumer advice editor for Edmunds.

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News: 9 Tax Breaks for the Middle Class

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If you believe that tax breaks are for millionaires and companies with offshore subsidiaries, you’re probably paying too much to the IRS.

In recent years, lawmakers have enacted dozens of tax incentives targeted at middle-class families. Taking full advantage of these tax breaks is particularly important for dual-income couples because there’s a good chance they’ll get hit by the marriage penalty—when two individuals pay more in taxes as a married couple than they would pay if they were both single. And they work together: Lowering your adjusted gross income (AGI) with one strategy could make you eligible for other tax breaks.

The tax code offers a slew of incentives for starting a family, saving for retirement and educating yourself and your kids.

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News: 5 Ways to Make Room in Your Budget to Pay Off Credit Card Debt

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Credit card debt is a familiar burden to Americans. Nearly two-thirds of Americans are carrying credit card debt or have had it in the past, according to a new NerdWallet survey. And that debt isn’t cheap. Households that regularly carry credit card debt pay an average of about $1,300 a year in interest on that debt.

If you want to get out of debt fast – and who wouldn’t? – you need to free up more money in your budget to put toward your balances. Basic personal finance advice calls for canceling (or shrinking) your cable package and brown-bagging your lunches to save money. Those kinds of small changes are definitely a good start. However, the most effective way to make room in your budget is to focus on major elements of that budget: income, housing, transportation, education and medical costs.

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News: Phased Retirement: The Next Big Trend

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For decades, the standard has been for retirees to say goodbye to their jobs and ride off into the sunset. However, some people today are taking a different route to retirement. Rather than clocking out one day and never going back, these seniors are instead phasing into their retirement by moving to a part-time schedule, becoming consultants or even starting small businesses.

“I see the beginning of a trend for people to work past the normal retirement age that is as much related to financial needs as to not feeling ready to fully retire,” says Rob Werner, president and CEO of Ardent Credit Union in Pennsylvania.

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News: Credit Repair: 5 Easy Steps To Do It Yourself And Improve Your Score

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To repair credit yourself, follow these five steps:

1. Get Your Credit Report From All 3 Bureaus, For Free

You need to review, in detail, your credit report from all three credit reporting agencies. You can use AnnualCreditReport.com to obtain your report for free. As you review the report, keep track of any information that you believe is incorrect. Credit scores are built using data from the credit bureaus, so it is important to ensure the data at Experian, Equifax and TransUnion is accurate.

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News: The Most Important Money Lesson You Should Teach Your Kids

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Recently, a dad and his daughter entered a small shop where I was browsing. The girl, who looked maybe nine, immediately grabbed a bracelet from a display and asked if she could have it. “We haven’t even been here five minutes and you’re already asking to buy stuff,” he fumed. “But it’s just $8,” she pouted. A few minutes later, when the two of them left the store, the girl was holding a small bag.

Whether out of guilt or because he just didn’t want to be nagged, this dad had caved. (I’m fairly sure that bag didn’t contain a gift for Grandma.) While as parents we’ve all been there, that dad’s inability to say “no”—and mean it—could be setting his daughter up for credit problems when she’s out on her own.

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News: 15 Ways To Make Extra Money Using Mobile Apps

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While I like the idea of taking on a side job to help me save for a house, my schedule doesn’t allow me to dedicate specific blocks of time to a job like waiting tables. However, there are several apps that allow you to work whenever you want to, or allow extremely flexible scheduling. And the fact is, we no longer live in a world where picking up a side hustle involves handing out résumés to local business and hoping someone calls you. Now, it really is as simple as downloading an app, applying and then starting a few days later. If you’re looking for an app-based side hustle, here are 15 options:

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