1. Weighing Your Options: Renting vs. Buying a Home

    Couple holding keys from new homePerhaps the biggest financial decision we make in life is whether to buy or rent a home, be it a house, townhouse, condo, co-op or multi-family dwelling. It is not a decision to be taken lightly and it involves numerous factors, including for new or expecting parents who may need more space and are looking to provide stability for a growing family.

    Every family’s situation is unique. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer. When deciding between renting vs. buying a home, and the timing, start by asking yourself the following questions:

    • How long do I plan to live in this location?
    • What are my future plans, both short-term (within the next 5 years) and long-term (five or more years from now)?
    • Do I have enough money to buy a home or would I need to get mortgage financing, and do I have enough additional money to cover expected and unexpected expenses?

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    Categories: Saving Money
  2. Tax Advantages With an Education Savings Account

    Education Savings Account Tax AdvantagesA qualified education savings account usually offers federal tax advantages to participants. The key factors are “how much” and “how they work” for investors. While you can use any savings or investment account to plan for college, qualified college investment funds offer tax advantages that standard accounts do not.

    For example, a Coverdell Education Savings Account (ESA) offers tax-free earnings increases, if the parent qualifies. If the parent (or child) has “modified adjusted gross income” less than $110,000 (or $220,000 for joint tax returns), and your child is under 18, you qualify for these college savings accounts. If you only withdraw funds for your child’s education expenses each year, these withdrawals are also tax-free.