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Money talks.

Our blog is written by experts — who also happen to be real people who have experienced the same financial concerns you have. Read on for real talk about real finances.

Money management tips: 5 easy ways to spark financial fireworks

When it comes to your finances, a small spark can ignite spectacular results. Even seemingly minor decisions can have long-term benefits, like lighting a fuse on an amazing fireworks display. Here’s a roundup of our best money management tips, to help you find your spark: 1. Put together a realistic budget.Because this task feels like a chore, many people put it off or skip it altogether.... Continue Reading »

Stay on track: How to prevent a default on a mortgage

Missed mortgage payments became far more familiar during the recent financial crisis. If your tight budget is forcing a decision about which payments you might have to skip, don’t give up and let the situation spiral out of control. Tight cash flow doesn’t mean you’re going to default on your mortgage. The mortgage should, of course, be one of the last bills you let slide. Missing payment... Continue Reading »

Make the most of your first salary: living on a budget

Establishing a viable budget after landing your first full-time job is tricky, usually because it’s difficult to imagine exactly how many places your money has to go. You’ll soon discover, though, that without a plan, your finances can quickly run amok. Read on to help get your financial house in tip-top shape. Budget framework When establishing a budget, it’s a good idea to get your pla... Continue Reading »

Learn how credit cards work: The fine print

Credit cards can be a useful part of your financial toolbox. Along with enabling you to purchase items now and pay for them later, credit cards can also help you build your credit score. But don’t start filling out that application until you have a good understanding of how credit cards work. It’s easy to sign on the dotted line, but it isn’t as easy to understand the fine print that weaves... Continue Reading »

Living on a budget: Summer fun edition

Don’t let your vacation dreams turn into an excuse to quit living on a budget or start racking up credit charges that you’ll spend months paying off. With a little smart planning now, you can enjoy a great summer without worrying about financial repercussions. Plan within your means If a week at an all-inclusive resort isn’t realistic, set your sights elsewhere. Don’t fall into the t... Continue Reading »

Debt facts and myths: The truth about how debt adds up

Most debt is incurred with large purchases, like big televisions or extensive vacations, so if you just keep those big charges in check, you’ll be fine, right? Wrong. In fact, for many people, debt sneaks up after using credit cards for small purchases. Here are some debt facts and myths that will help you get your finances under control. Consider these three credit myths and the solutions... Continue Reading »

Small business tools to help manage day-to-day tasks

When it comes to running a small business, the daily, weekly, or monthly tasks involved in keeping things humming can be surprisingly time-consuming. You need to focus as much energy as possible producing whatever it is your business specializes in, but the little details can take up more of your time than you ever would have expected. There are plenty of small business tools to help you worry les... Continue Reading »

How can you prevent identity theft on mobile devices? Our top tips.

Smartphones and tablets help us work, plan activities, and shop on the go, but as mobile buying and banking become more popular, consumers are becoming more vulnerable to identity fraud. So how can you prevent identity theft on your mobile devices? Here are some simple ways to keep your identity and information safe from hackers, particularly when it comes to these increasingly popular gadgets. ... Continue Reading »

Living on a budget? 5 guidelines to follow

Putting together a realistic budget is one of those to-do list items that feels daunting for many people.  However, getting a handle on spending, saving, and education expenses is one of the best ways to make living on a budget effective. Cobalt Credit Union’s Beverly Hobbs, AAMS®, LPL Financial Advisor, answers some questions on good strategies to implement, so that budget planning isn�... Continue Reading »

Make the most of your tax refund

Your tax refund is here, and suddenly you’re envisioning all the items that you can buy. Although small luxuries are a healthy part of any financial plan, when it comes to funding infusions like tax returns, holiday bonuses, or unexpected windfalls, saving at least some of that money is important. And when you do, make the most out of those funds by thinking about your financial goals. Here a... Continue Reading »