8 Ways to Use a HELOC

8 Ways to Use a HELOC

Tackle your to-do list with your available home equity line of credit — you can borrow up to your maximum credit limit, when you need it, as you need it. It’s as simple as making a transfer in Online Banking! Your HELOC provides more flexibility to support your goals than other loan options due to… Read more »

FAFSA Application

FAFSA for 2022-2023 School Year Opens on October 1

October is the kickoff season for financial aid. That’s when incoming and returning college students can start filing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, for the next academic year. The FAFSA is a prerequisite for federal student loans, grants, and work-study, and may be required by colleges before they distribute their own… Read more »

Housing Market

Too Hot to Handle: What’s Ahead for the U.S. Housing Market?

ASK A FINANCIAL PLANNER   The U.S. housing market, already strong before the pandemic, has heated up to record levels in 2021. The Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index, which measures home prices in 20 major metropolitan areas, reported a 12-month increase of 18.6% in June 2021, the largest year-over-year gain in data going back… Read more »

College Student

Positioning Your Income/Assets to Enhance Financial Aid Eligibility

ASK A FINANCIAL PLANNER   What Does it Mean to Enhance Your Financial Aid Eligibility? If you qualify for federal financial aid, there are a number of strategies you can try to implement to enhance the amount of aid your child will receive when you apply for financial aid. The idea is to lower your… Read more »

Student Financial Aid

Are There Any Assets Not Counted for Financial Aid Purposes?

ASK A FINANCIAL PLANNER Yes, assuming you are talking about federal financial aid. Under the federal government’s financial aid formula, four main types of assets are excluded from consideration when determining your child’s financial need: All retirement accounts (e.g., IRAs, 401(k)s, 403(b)s) Home equity in a primary residence Annuities Cash value life insurance These assets… Read more »

Student Loans

Student Loan Payment Pause Extended Through January 2022

  On August 6, 2021, the U.S. Department of Education announced an extension of the pause on federal student loan payments to January 31, 2022. The payment moratorium, currently in effect for millions of federal student loan borrowers, was set to end on September 30, 2021. The Department noted that this extension would be the… Read more »

Dorm room

Do’s & Don’t’s of Dorm Room Shopping

Dorm life is an exciting milestone for many incoming college students, but preparing to move in can be a little daunting (and costly). It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement and overspend on items you don’t really need. So before you start shopping, consider these do’s and don’ts: Do: Review Dorm Move-In Info… Read more »

Back to school

Tips for Tackling Back-to-School Shopping

Back to school shopping season is already here, and experts are predicting spending to increase this year. Preparing for the new academic year doesn’t have to break the bank. Plus, involving your child in planning and budgeting is a great way to teach them about money through example. Here are 5 tips for tackling back-to-school… Read more »

Student Loans

Federal Student Loan Interest Rates Set to Increase for 2021-2022

ASK A FINANCIAL PLANNER After two years of decreases, interest rates on federal student loans are set to increase almost a full percentage point for the 2021-2022 school year.1 The interest rates on federal student loans are reset each year after the May auction of the 10-year Treasury note. The rates apply to new federal student… Read more »

Debt

Get Smart About Debt: 7 Tips to Help You Get Out of Debt NOW

If you are dealing with debt, you aren’t alone. The average American household has an average balance of about $6,600 in credit card debt, and that’s not taking into account home, auto, and student loans. Paying off your debt isn’t always easy, but having a plan can go a long way in achieving your financial goals. Check… Read more »