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Your Financial Action Plan. 12 Simple Steps to Achieve Money Success

  • ID: 2210501
  • Book
  • October 2004
  • 224 Pages
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd
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Your Financial Action Plan outlines twelve simple steps that will improve your level of financial literacy as well as help you forge the financial future you desire.

Today, financial knowledge means financial power, and in Your Financial Action Plan, you'll be introduced to the important personal financial issues that affect your life.

With this book as your guide, you'll learn how to:
- Make the most of your mortgage
- Maintain a good credit rating
- Build your retirement savings
- Negotiate with your local bank to get the best deals
- Navigate the ins and outs of insurance
- Create a will
- Handle tax deductions and credits
- And much more

Filled with practical guidance and extensive expertise, Your Financial Action Plan will help you build the type of financial life you've always wanted.
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Acknowledgments vii

Foreword ix

Introduction xi

Chapter 1: Rainy Day Funds and Sunny Day Savings 1

Prepare for an Emergency

Understand Asset Allocation

Build a Financial Plan

Chapter 2: Bills and Chills 11

Gain Control of Your Expenditures

Chapter 3: Budget Bingo 15

Create a Comfortable Budget

Recognize Shopping Pitfalls

Chapter 4: Hanging It Up 25

Build Your Retirement Savings

Understanding 401(k)s, Defined Benefit Plans,

Social Security, IRAs, and Other Pension Plans

Chapter 5: Bank On It 41

Check Up on Your Bank

Know What Records to Keep and Where to Keep Them

Chapter 6: Willing It 45

Decide Who Gets What

How to Give It to Them

A Look at the Deadly Business of Funerals

Chapter 7: Got Insurance? 51

Disability Insurance: The Gory Details

Life Insurance: How Much Do You Need?

Other Insurance You Need—or Not

Chapter 8: Driving Mr. Washington 63

Lease or Buy?

Showroom Errors

Insure Your Wheels

Chapter 9: Take Credit—Carefully 73

Borrow Responsibly

Understand Your Credit Report

Chapter 10: Dealing with Debt 85

Borrowing Responsibly

Credit Card Bill of Rights

Chapter 11: April 15 Blues 93

Manage Your Withholding Better

Use Tax Deductions and Credits

Chapter 12: This Old House 109

Should You Buy?

Create a Realistic Budget for Homeownership

Make the Most of Your Mortgage

Afterword: 12 Steps to Money Success 125

Appendix: Bankrate Form Letters 127

Glossary 173

About the Author 193

Index 195
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G. COTTER CUNNINGHAM is an authority on personal finance. For over a decade, he has given consumers expert advice on their important finan-cial matters. Mr. Cunningham is the Chief Operating Officer of Bankrate, Inc., which operates Bankrate.com, the most-visited personal finance rate information Web site in the world. Mr. Cunningham and his colleagues provide consumers with comparative data and practical advice on CDs, mortgages, auto loans, banking, taxes, and financial planning. Bankrate.com helps consumers to select the best financial institution for their particular needs. Bankrate provides financial data and information to a network of more than 75 partners, including Yahoo!, America Online, the Wall Street Journal, and the New York Times. . Cotter Cunningham has a unique background and perspective on personal finance. He has spent almost his entire career in finance, from working as a loan officer and running an Internet-based credit card program, to advising companies on financial strategy. Cotter believes the first step in financial independence is to foster a basic understanding of the who, what, why, where, and when of financial matters. In Your Financial Action Plan, he provides readers with the knowledge they need to plan their financial future.. He lives in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, with his wife and children.
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