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Today, yet another scam to be on the watch for….

Posted by Chuck Bentley

Feb 26, 2015 9:00:00 AM

Anthem, a major health insurance company warned consumers recently to be aware of scam email campaigns targeting current and former customers of the company. The emails encourage recipients to click a link for credit monitoring services. "These emails are NOT from Anthem," the insurance company said in the statement.

Here is why this scam is so dangerous. The insurance company announced that its database had been hacked, exposing personal data on as many as 80 million records for current and former customers and employees. The information accessed includes names, birthdays, Social Security numbers, street addresses, email addresses and employment information, including income data, according to the company.  The fraudsters can communicate with you as if they are legitimate. 

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Topics: Personal Finance

Got enough to retire?

Posted by Chuck Bentley

Feb 25, 2015 2:59:00 PM

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Do you worry about having enough money for your retirement years? According to a recent survey, More than half of people in the USA with significant savings fear going broke in retirement.

In a recent CNBC interview, Bruce McClary of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling provides some ideas for ways to live more frugally in retirement:  “First, analyze your living situation. The cost of home and home-related expenses accounts for about 43% of spending for those who are 65 to 74, research shows. So to save money, it may be worth downsizing to a smaller home,” McClary says. “Less square footage and acreage eases pressure on the budget and can be less stressful to maintain. Downsizing also gives you the opportunity to earn money by selling household items you no longer need”, he says.

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Topics: Personal Finance

Do you love your neighbor?

Posted by Chuck Bentley

Feb 24, 2015 2:30:00 PM

Martin Luther once said, “A true Christian lives and labors on earth not for himself but for his neighbor,” “Therefore the whole spirit of his life impels him to do even that which he needs not do, but which is profitable and necessary for his neighbor.”

As one who is interested in economic history, I find it interesting that the global economy remained relatively flat until the Protestant Reformation. Not only did the Bible begin to be distributed into the hands of regular people like you and me, it set in motion what became known as the protestant work ethic. At that time, economic growth began to explode. History shows that the economic growth of the West correlates with the spread and adoption of God’s Word.

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Topics: Personal Finance

Are you raising your children to become financially independent?

Posted by Chuck Bentley

Feb 23, 2015 11:05:00 AM

3 John 1:4 says, “I have no greater joy than to see my children walking in the Truth.” Amen to that!  I would add my own corollary…I have no greater relief than to see my children able to pay their own way when they become adults….

We all want to help our children financially, but it is more important to teach them to become financially independent.

 

Here are some tips:

1) Start early with dividing all income, including birthday gifts, into envelopes for giving, saving and spending.  Don’t allow any income to be used without first dividing it into these important categories.  When they are young, I recommend they give 10%, save 70% and have up to 20% in a spending envelope. This changes over time.
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Topics: Personal Finance

Today, seven ways to waste your money.

Posted by Chuck Bentley

Feb 19, 2015 11:30:00 AM

 Tim Challies, a Canadian Pastor, recently wrote an article sharing the things where he personally found himself wasting his money.  I think it’s a great list for all of us.

Buying Junk:  Occasionally, it is better to spend a little more money on a quality product rather than buying something that will break almost immediately. In the long run, you will save more money by doing this.
 
The Daily Latte:  Coffee adds up quick in a year. Try brewing your own coffee at home.
 
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Topics: Personal Finance

What are you going to do with your extra $550?

Posted by Chuck Bentley

Feb 18, 2015 11:26:00 AM

For most of us, buying gasoline below $2 per gallon feels like we got a raise, but we weren’t sure just how much.

The federal government’s Energy Information Administration estimates that the average U.S. household will spend about $550 less on gasoline in 2015 than it did in 2014, thanks in part to lower crude oil prices. This means that households will likely spend an average of $1,962 on gas this year — the first time this expenditure has been below $2,000 since 2009, the department estimates. 

So what are you going to do with your extra money?  Allow me to make a few suggestions. 

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Topics: Personal Finance

Millennial preferences may reshape traditional homeownership…

Posted by Chuck Bentley

Feb 17, 2015 11:14:00 AM

 

Nearly six in ten millennials (59%) say they’d rather rent a home than buy one, with just one in four saying they are either “very likely” or “completely likely” to purchase a home in the next five years, according to a survey of 1,300 millennials, released by Elite Daily and Millennial Branding.  This anti-home-buying trend can already be seen: Currently, only about one in four millennials own a home, down from about one in three in the mid-70s and early 80s, according to data from the Demand Institute.

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Topics: Personal Finance

Money can’t buy happiness… don’t believe me?

Posted by Chuck Bentley

Feb 16, 2015 11:30:00 AM

William “Bud” Post won $16.2 million in 1988. A former girlfriend who wanted the money sued him, and his brother hired a hit man, hoping to murder him and inherit it. Post called winning the money a “nightmare.” He died in 2006 after declaring bankruptcy.

Jeffrey Dampier won $20 million in 1996. Several years later, a sister-in-law and her boyfriend kidnapped and murdered him for the money.

John McGuiness won £10 million in 1997. He bought luxury cars and went on vacations, then lost all his money, went back to work and applied for subsidized housing. McGuiness commented, “I just want my life to get back to the way it was before.”

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Topics: Personal Finance

Show Some More Love To Your Picky Valentine

Posted by Chuck Bentley

Feb 13, 2015 1:27:00 PM

Published on February 13, 2015 by Washington Times.

It’s all hearts and flowers now, as love is in the air – literally on the airwaves – as Valentine’sDay approaches and advertisers make a play for the almost $13.2 billion in spending that occurs to express our love to the special one in our life. It’s ironic that all the hearts, flowers and chocolate are preceded by “Divorce Month.   

Sadly, after the holiday season ends, there will be about a one-third increase in divorce filings in January as too many couples decide that they want to begin their new year with an ending. It’s a tragic tale really as the hype of a romantic connection becomes big business in February even as divorce attorneys are gearing up for court.

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Topics: Personal Finance

The Taxman Cometh: Crown’s Tax Tips for 2015

Posted by Chuck Bentley

Feb 10, 2015 9:00:00 AM

 

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Remember Jesus’ apostle Matthew? Even Jesus had a taxman! The Bible says that if you’re wise, you’ll have many counselors, and no where is that more needed than when you sit down to fill out your taxes.  Getting good advice is a must.

Here’s an overview of 17 tips for making your tax experience this year not only less painful, but more productive, and hopefully, leaving you with more of your own resources to invest in the work that God has given you to do.

 

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Topics: Personal Finance

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