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The One Thing Every Millennial Should Do if They Want to Own a Home (It Costs Nothing)

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Owning a home is no small feat — especially after the financial apocalypse and dismal job market millennials have persevered through. Twice. 

And yet, despite all odds, millennials are now the biggest group of homeowners in the United States, according to 2020 research by the National Association of Realtors. 

How did they do it? Well, everyone follows a different path to homeownership — but there is one thing most home-owning millennials have in common: a good credit score. 

Without a good credit score, getting approved for a mortgage is going to be tough. And getting a decent interest rate is going to be even harder — meaning a homeowner could be paying tens of thousands of dollars more for their home than someone with excellent credit. Yikes. 

That unnecessary debt is avoidable, though, and it will cost you nothing to start improving your credit score. 

In two minutes, you can sign up for a free Credit Sesame account and get personalized tips on how to improve your score. You’ll also be able to see any of your debt-carrying accounts, plus any marks or errors holding you back (it’s more common than you’d think).

So for millennials ready to take the next big step in their life and stake a claim on a piece of property, make sure your credit is on track. Credit Sesame can help you bump it up — making homeownership more attainable.

Can you see a white picket fence in your near future? Then take 90 seconds to sign up for a free Credit Sesame account. The sooner you get started, the closer you’ll be to your goal of a good credit score — and homeownership.

Kari Faber is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. She’s a first-time millennial homeowner, somehow!

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You Don’t Need To Be A Millionaire To Leave Up To $1.5 Million In Life Insurance To Your Family

Some of the links in this post are from our sponsors. We provide you with accurate, reliable information. Learn more about how we make money and select our advertising partners.

Let us guess: You’ve sort of thought about getting life insurance — Hmm, I should probably do that sometime.

That way, if something bad happens to you, you’ll still be able to look out for your loved ones. Thanks to your thoughtfulness and smart decision-making, they’ll be more financially stable and won’t be left stressing about paying the bills without you.

But you just haven’t gotten around to it. You figure it’ll be kind of a hassle, and you really don’t need another bill to pay, right?

Are we getting warm? OK, but what if we told you it’s surprisingly easy and affordable to check this off your list?

An Affordable Solution

Let’s start with the basics: Life insurance is probably cheaper than you think. In general, people overestimate the cost of life insurance. For instance, nearly half of millennials think life insurance costs about five times what it actually does, according to a study by the insurance industry group LIMRA. 

Meanwhile, a company like Bestow offers term life insurance rates starting at just $16 a month.

No Waiting, No Medical Exam

Here’s another thing: It’s not the hassle you think it is.

Historically, getting life insurance could be a weeks-long process. You could be asked to go to a doctor’s office to get a physical and bloodwork, then organize and send back results and other paperwork.

But newer companies like Bestow are changing the game. Bestow uses algorithms instead of medical exams to evaluate applicants.

If you’re between the ages of 18 and 60, you can get a free quote without a medical exam — or even having to get up from the couch. In fact, most customers who apply for a Bestow policy do it from their phones. It takes as little as five minutes.

With Life Insurance, Sooner is Better

I’ll worry about this later, you’re thinking. Maybe 10 or 15 years from now.

Here’s the problem with that: You probably won’t get a better deal on life insurance than you will right now, while you still have your health. You’ll never get any younger than you are right now. And the younger you are, the lower your premiums usually are. So, by getting in early, you’ll be protecting your loved ones at what’s likely your best possible price.

“Term life insurance is an affordable way to get started with a death benefit that can cover you through the most important upcoming years — a new mortgage, young children, etc,” says Kerri Moriarty, a financial business strategist based in Boston.

Getting a free quote  from Bestow takes just minutes, and if approved, you could get coverage today. Now’s a great time to start planning for the future. To get the best deal, apply while you’re young and healthy.

Mike Brassfield ([email protected]) is a senior writer at The Penny Hoarder. He has life insurance.

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Save Money

6 Ways to Save Money on Amazon You Probably Don’t Know About

Some of the links in this post are from our sponsors. We provide you with accurate, reliable information. Learn more about how we make money and select our advertising partners.

We’re all doing a lot more online shopping these days. New quarantine sweatpants? Add to Amazon cart. Noise-canceling headphones for your home office? Thanks, Amazon!

Here’s the thing though: You’re probably overpaying.

We always assume Amazon has the best price, but oftentimes, there are way better deals hiding out there. If you’re not tracking them down, you’re probably getting gouged.

Here’s how to stop overpaying…

1. Find Out if You’re Overpaying

Wikibuy tells you when you’re about to pay too much for an item. For example, you could save $30 on this TV.

Wouldn’t it be nice if you got an alert any time you’re shopping on Amazon and are about to get ripped off.

That’s exactly what a free service called Wikibuy does.

Wikibuy’s free alerts can be added to your browser. Before you check out, it’ll check other websites, including Walmart, Target, eBay and others to see if your item is available for cheaper. It will also show you coupon codes, set up price-drop alerts and even let you see the item’s price history.

Let’s say you’re shopping for a new TV. You’re ready to check out, and you assume you’re getting the best price. Here’s when Wikibuy will pop up and let you know if you’re about to overpay. It will even let you know if you can get it delivered sooner (see photo above).

So far, Wikibuy has saved users more than $70 million.

You can get started with Wikibuy in just a few minutes to see if you’re overpaying online.

2. Get $80 in Amazon Gift Cards Every Month  

Taking surveys might not sound like the best way to make save on Amazon, but if you’re just vegging out on the couch — or pretending to be interested in your partner’s new favorite show — why not click a couple buttons?

There are a bunch of paid survey sites out there, but one of the best we’ve found is Survey Junkie

It could earn you up to $80 a month in Amazon gift cards. Seriously.

They’ll ask you questions about things like, what kind of laundry detergent you use, or if you prefer Pepsi or Coke. You get points for answering, and many people accumulate enough points to request a check within a few hours. 

More than 10 million people already use Survey Junkie, and it has 4.5/5 stars on TrustPilot. 

Give it a try by visiting Survey Junkie and clicking the “Join Now” button. It’s free.

3. Stop Deleting Your Emails from Amazon

It turns out deleting your emails could be costing you money. Intrigued?

One of our secret weapons is called Paribus — a tool that gets you money back for your Amazon purchases.

It’s free to sign up, and once you do, it will scan your email for any receipts. If it discovers you’ve purchased something from Amazon, it will track the item’s price and help you get a refund when there’s a price drop.

Plus, if your guaranteed shipment from Amazon shows up late, Paribus will help you get compensated.

Disclosure: Paribus compensates us when you sign up using the links we provide.

4. Get $225 in Amazon Gift Cards Just for Watching the News

A woman uses an Amazon gift card to shop.
Aileen Perilla/The Penny Hoarder

It’s been a historic year in news, and we’re all constantly refreshing for the latest updates. You probably know more than one news-junkie who fancies themselves an expert in respiratory illness or a political mastermind.

And research companies want to pay you to keep watching. You could add up to $225 a month in Amazon gift cards to your pocket by signing up for a free account with InboxDollars.

They’ll present you with short news clips to choose from every day, then ask you a few questions about them.You just have to answer honestly, and InboxDollars will continue to pay you every month.

This might sound too good to be true, but it’s already paid its users more than $56 million.

It takes about one minute to sign up, and start getting paid to watch the news.

5. Shop Amazon’s Outlet Store

A woman walks down the street with an Amazon box.
Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

Did you know Amazon has an outlet store? Seriously.

It works similarly to your traditional brick-and-mortar outlet stores; it stocks overstocked items and sells them at a discount.

You can find anything from pet supplies to clothing to electronics to grocery items.

6. Get $5 in Amazon Stock

Imagine if you had bought one share of Amazon for $18 when the stock first went public. Today, it would be worth more than $20,000 — despite all the ups and downs in the stock market.

But if you work for a living and don’t happen to have millions of dollars lying around, that can sound totally out of reach.

That’s why a lot of people use the app Stash. They’ll give you $5 of stock in Amazon (or another company of your choice) just for opening an account. 

The best part? When these companies profit, so can you. Some companies even send you a check every quarter for your share of the profits, called dividends. 

How to claim your free bonus: It takes just a couple of minutes to sign up and get your bonus stock — you may even just get a share of the “next Amazon.”

With Stash, all your investments are protected by the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) — that’s industry talk for, “Your money’s safe.”2

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Save Money

6 Ways to Save Money on Amazon You Probably Don’t Know About

Some of the links in this post are from our sponsors. We provide you with accurate, reliable information. Learn more about how we make money and select our advertising partners.

We’re all doing a lot more online shopping these days. New quarantine sweatpants? Add to Amazon cart. Noise-canceling headphones for your home office? Thanks, Amazon!

Here’s the thing though: You’re probably overpaying.

We always assume Amazon has the best price, but oftentimes, there are way better deals hiding out there. If you’re not tracking them down, you’re probably getting gouged.

Here’s how to stop overpaying…

1. Find Out if You’re Overpaying

Wikibuy tells you when you’re about to pay too much for an item. For example, you could save $30 on this TV.

Wouldn’t it be nice if you got an alert any time you’re shopping on Amazon and are about to get ripped off.

That’s exactly what a free service called Wikibuy does.

Wikibuy’s free alerts can be added to your browser. Before you check out, it’ll check other websites, including Walmart, Target, eBay and others to see if your item is available for cheaper. It will also show you coupon codes, set up price-drop alerts and even let you see the item’s price history.

Let’s say you’re shopping for a new TV. You’re ready to check out, and you assume you’re getting the best price. Here’s when Wikibuy will pop up and let you know if you’re about to overpay. It will even let you know if you can get it delivered sooner (see photo above).

So far, Wikibuy has saved users more than $70 million.

You can get started with Wikibuy in just a few minutes to see if you’re overpaying online.

2. Get $80 in Amazon Gift Cards Every Month  

Taking surveys might not sound like the best way to make save on Amazon, but if you’re just vegging out on the couch — or pretending to be interested in your partner’s new favorite show — why not click a couple buttons?

There are a bunch of paid survey sites out there, but one of the best we’ve found is Survey Junkie

It could earn you up to $80 a month in Amazon gift cards. Seriously.

They’ll ask you questions about things like, what kind of laundry detergent you use, or if you prefer Pepsi or Coke. You get points for answering, and many people accumulate enough points to request a check within a few hours. 

More than 10 million people already use Survey Junkie, and it has 4.5/5 stars on TrustPilot. 

Give it a try by visiting Survey Junkie and clicking the “Join Now” button. It’s free.

3. Stop Deleting Your Emails from Amazon

It turns out deleting your emails could be costing you money. Intrigued?

One of our secret weapons is called Paribus — a tool that gets you money back for your Amazon purchases.

It’s free to sign up, and once you do, it will scan your email for any receipts. If it discovers you’ve purchased something from Amazon, it will track the item’s price and help you get a refund when there’s a price drop.

Plus, if your guaranteed shipment from Amazon shows up late, Paribus will help you get compensated.

Disclosure: Paribus compensates us when you sign up using the links we provide.

4. Get $225 in Amazon Gift Cards Just for Watching the News

A woman uses an Amazon gift card to shop.
Aileen Perilla/The Penny Hoarder

It’s been a historic year in news, and we’re all constantly refreshing for the latest updates. You probably know more than one news-junkie who fancies themselves an expert in respiratory illness or a political mastermind.

And research companies want to pay you to keep watching. You could add up to $225 a month in Amazon gift cards to your pocket by signing up for a free account with InboxDollars.

They’ll present you with short news clips to choose from every day, then ask you a few questions about them.You just have to answer honestly, and InboxDollars will continue to pay you every month.

This might sound too good to be true, but it’s already paid its users more than $56 million.

It takes about one minute to sign up, and start getting paid to watch the news.

5. Shop Amazon’s Outlet Store

A woman walks down the street with an Amazon box.
Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

Did you know Amazon has an outlet store? Seriously.

It works similarly to your traditional brick-and-mortar outlet stores; it stocks overstocked items and sells them at a discount.

You can find anything from pet supplies to clothing to electronics to grocery items.

6. Get $5 in Amazon Stock

Imagine if you had bought one share of Amazon for $18 when the stock first went public. Today, it would be worth more than $20,000 — despite all the ups and downs in the stock market.

But if you work for a living and don’t happen to have millions of dollars lying around, that can sound totally out of reach.

That’s why a lot of people use the app Stash. They’ll give you $5 of stock in Amazon (or another company of your choice) just for opening an account. 

The best part? When these companies profit, so can you. Some companies even send you a check every quarter for your share of the profits, called dividends. 

How to claim your free bonus: It takes just a couple of minutes to sign up and get your bonus stock — you may even just get a share of the “next Amazon.”

With Stash, all your investments are protected by the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) — that’s industry talk for, “Your money’s safe.”2

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The 8 Best Pieces Money Advice For 50-Somethings We’ve Ever Heard

Some of the links in this post are from our sponsors. We provide you with accurate, reliable information. Learn more about how we make money and select our advertising partners.

Here’s the thing: A lot of people have already put these money secrets to good use. They’ve found hundreds of dollars in savings, secured their family’s financials and padded their bank accounts.

Now it’s your turn, 50-somethings.

Putting all these secrets to use is actually easier than you might think. We’re betting you can knock out at least three or four of these things right now — yes, even from your phone.

Go ahead and join the masses and get in on these money secrets:

1. Give Your Family up to $1M

Have you thought about how your family would manage without your income after you’re gone? Chances are your checking account balance won’t last forever.

But you could still leave them up to $1 million in life insurance.

A company called Bestow can help you leave your family up to $1 million in term life insurance, and it can cost less than your monthly Netflix subscription.

We get it — it’s one more bill, and who has time to sign up? But if you were born after 1966, you can take advantage of Bestow. You don’t even need to leave your house.

We hear people are paying as little as $8 a month. (But every year you wait, this gets more expensive.)

It takes just minutes to sign up and see how much life insurance you can leave them — even if you don’t have seven figures in your bank account.

2. Invest in Real Estate (Even if You’re Not a Millionaire)

The stock market can be a scary place. Stock prices shoot up and down like a roller coaster ride, and who knows when the whole thing might crash?

It would be nice to diversify and invest some of your money in real estate, but don’t you have to be wealthy to do that?

Now you can invest like the 1% does, and all you need to get started is $500. A company called DiversyFund will invest your money in private real estate — specifically, in apartment buildings it co-owns with its investors — and you only need $500.

You can see exactly which properties are included in your portfolio through their online dashboard — like a 54-unit apartment complex in Salt Lake City, Utah, or a 30-unit waterfront property in Stuart, Florida. And you don’t have to experience the headaches that come with being a landlord — DiversyFund does all the heavy lifting for you.

So you don’t need a fortune to invest in real estate. All you need to get started is $500. Sign up here to start investing today.

3. Cancel Your Car Insurance

When was the last time you shopped around for car insurance? Was it more than six months ago?

If so, you’re probably overpaying — by hundreds of dollars. Yep. Experts say you should compare rates twice a year to get the best deal.

Twice a year? Yeah, we don’t want to do that either. 

A website called Insure.com makes it super easy to compare car insurance prices before 2021. All you have to do is enter your ZIP code and your age, and it’ll show you your options.

Using Insure.com, people have saved an average of $489 a year.Yup. That could be $500 back in your pocket just for taking a few minutes to look at your options.

4. See if You Can Get Money From This Company

Here’s the deal: If you’re not using Aspiration’s debit card, you’re missing out on extra cash. And who doesn’t want extra cash?

Yep. A debit card called Aspiration gives you up to a 10% back every time you swipe.

Need to buy groceries? Extra cash.

Need to fill up the tank? Bam. Even more extra cash.

You were going to buy these things anyway — why not get this extra money in the process?

Enter your email address here, and link your bank account to see how much extra cash you can get with your free Aspiration account. And don’t worry. Your money is FDIC insured and under a military-grade encryption. That’s nerd talk for “this is totally safe.”

5. Get up to $200 in Free Stocks

Imagine if you had bought one share of Amazon for $18 when the stock first went public. Today, it would be worth more than $20,000 — despite all the ups and downs in the stock market.

Here’s the thing about millionaires: They know the sooner you start investing, the better. And we found a company that will give you free stock to get started.  

An investing app called Robinhood will give you up to $200 worth of free stock in companies like Visa, Microsoft and GE, just for downloading its app and opening a free account. 

Robinhood is free and easy to navigate, which is why more than 10 million people use it — including both news junkies looking to outsmart the market and people who want to carefully put a few bucks away in a long-term investment.

It takes just a couple of minutes to sign up and get your free stock — you may even just get a share of the “next Amazon.”

6. Add up to 300 Points to Your Credit Score

When it comes to your credit score, it’s important to stay organized and keep tabs on it. After all, it’ll play an essential role in any big purchase you want to make — whether that’s a home or a car.

So if you’re looking to get your credit score back on track — or even if it is on track and you want to bump it up — try using a free website called Credit Sesame

Within two minutes, you’ll get access to your credit score, any debt-carrying accounts and a handful of personalized tips to improve your score. You’ll even be able to spot any errors holding you back (one in five reports have one).

James Cooper, of Atlanta, used Credit Sesame to raise his credit score nearly 300 points in six months.* “They showed me the ins and outs — how to dot the I’s and cross the T’s,” he said.

Want to check for yourself? It’s free and only takes about 90 seconds to sign up.

7. Add $225 to Your Wallet Just for Watching the News

It’s been a historic year in news, and we’re all constantly refreshing for the latest updates. You probably know more than one news-junkie who fancies themselves an expert in respiratory illness or a political mastermind.

And research companies want to pay you to keep watching. You could add up to $225 a month to your pocket by signing up for a free account with InboxDollars. They’ll present you with short news clips to choose from every day, then ask you a few questions about them.

You just have to answer honestly, and InboxDollars will continue to pay you every month. This might sound too good to be true, but it’s already paid its users more than $56 million.

It takes about one minute to sign up, and start getting paid to watch the news

8. Get up to $200 in Free Stocks

Imagine if you had bought one share of Amazon for $18 when the stock first went public. Today, it would be worth more than $20,000 — despite all the ups and downs in the stock market.

Here’s the thing about millionaires: They know the sooner you start investing, the better. And we found a company that will give you free stock to get started.

An investing app called Robinhood will give you up to $200 worth of free stock in companies like Visa, Microsoft and GE, just for downloading its app and opening a free account.

Robinhood is free and easy to navigate, which is why more than 10 million people use it — including both news junkies looking to outsmart the market and people who want to carefully put a few bucks away in a long-term investment.

It takes just a couple of minutes to sign up and get your free stock — you may even just get a share of the “next Amazon.”

*For Securities priced over $1,000, purchase of fractional shares starts at $0.05.

**You’ll also bear the standard fees and expenses reflected in the pricing of the ETFs in your account, plus fees for various ancillary services charged by Stash and the custodian.

The Penny Hoarder is a Paid Affiliate/partner of Stash. Investment advisory services offered by Stash Investments LLC, an SEC registered investment adviser. This material has been distributed for informational and educational purposes only, and is not intended as investment, legal, accounting, or tax advice. Investing involves risk. 

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This Website Could Loan You Up to $40,000 in Just a Few Days 

Some of the links in this post are from our sponsors. We provide you with accurate, reliable information. Learn more about how we make money and select our advertising partners.

When you need a loan, finding one — and getting approved — can bring as much anxiety as the thing you need the loan for. Whether it’s for debt consolidation, medical expenses or big home projects, waiting weeks just won’t cut it. On top of it all, big banks may charge you insane rates after making you jump through qualification hoops. 

There’s another option, though. If you need to borrow up to $40,000, a website called Fiona can help you get a loan through a company called LendingClub. You can save an average of $1,000 on interest payments1, plus, you could get your money in only a few days — talk about relief! 

Fiona will also show you additional offers from other lenders — because comparing your quotes can help you save even more money in the long run.

How to Borrow up to $40,000 and Pay Off Debt Faster

Getting started is simple. The application process only takes a few minutes, and you’ll see your loan offers immediately. Once you choose your loan, you could see your money in just a few days. 

It costs nothing to apply, and it won’t affect your credit score, either. And by the way, your information is totally safe — the website uses higher encryption security than many banks.

Interest rates with LendingClub start at 8.05% — way better than the 20% or more your credit card is charging you — and many people may actually improve their credit scores when they take out a personal loan and make their payments on time each month. These lower rates can save you an average of $1,000 in interest payments and help you pay off your debt faster.

If you have a credit score above 600 and need a loan, let Fiona find your offers in only a couple of minutes. You can get approved and see your money in just a few days.

1 On average, personal loans from LendingClub Bank are projected to be offered at an APR of 15.99% (based on loan approval amounts in aggregate) with an origination fee of 5.30% and a principal amount of $13,411 for loans with term lengths of 36 months, based on current credit criteria and an analysis of historical borrower data between September 2020 and October 2020. For credit card purchases made in October 2020, the average APR was 20.23%, according to publicly available information published by TheBalance.com. If you pay off a credit card balance of $12,700 with an APR of 20.23% over 36 equal monthly payments, you will pay $4,345 in total finance charges. If you obtain a loan with a term of 36 months and an amount financed of $12,700 (principal amount of $13,411 with an origination fee of $711) at 15.99% APR, you will pay $3,372 in total finance charges over the term of the loan, a savings of $973 as compared to the average credit card.