Complexity of Student Debt

Key Takeaways

  • It’s important to know your options in choosing a loan to fund your education as there are big differences between federal and private loans.
  • Federal loans have several flexible repayment options whereas private loans do not.
  • Paying your first loan payment on time and in full helps build your credit and keep it high so you can reduce interest expense on other loans.

Auto Loan Basics

Key Takeaways

  • When getting an auto loan, you want to be sure you know what’s involved so you are not caught off guard with hidden fees or payments.
  • The elements to consider when getting an auto loan are your budget, savings, credit score, amortization, depreciation, and buying new or used.
  • You can get a loan through a dealership, but be sure to check on deals straight from financial institutions as well.

Taxes—The Good, the Bad and the Smart

Key Takeaways

  • You can’t get away from taxes, but people who are well-informed pay less.
  • The majority of Americans pay not one but three taxes on their salary—federal, state and payroll.
  • There are a myriad of deductions, exemptions and strategies you can use to lessen your tax bite and accumulate wealth from Day One of your working years.
  • When investing, always look for tax-deductible, tax-deferred and tax-free options.

3 Key Money Math Skills

Key Takeaways

  • Compound interest, computational skills and amortization are the three key money concepts we all need to master.
  • As Einstein observed, compound interest is a saver/investor’s greatest friend and a debtor’s greatest enemy.
  • Creating a budget and sticking to it are essential to building wealth and a secure financial future. Budgeting just takes discipline and the basic math skills that you learned in middle school.
  • When paying off a long-term loan, pay attention to the principal versus the interest, not just your monthly payment amount.