travel

Travel Solo or With a Tour?

Many people wonder if they should travel solo or with a tour. Both have advantages and drawbacks, which depend on your age and relationship status.

 
Many people wonder about traveling solo or with a tour. Both have advantages and drawbacks, which depend on your age, relationship status, and how much comfort or adventure you seek. I have done both, and from my experience as a single woman, my advice is to go with a tour.

For my first trip when I was alone, I chose to go on a tour to Egypt. I had dreamed of seeing the pyramids …

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Louvre Art Gallery

Is Traveling to Paris on Your Bucket List?

Traveling is one of the bonuses that comes with retirement. You now have the time to go somewhere for as long as you like.

 
When it comes to traveling, you should take the advice passed on by Anthony Bourdain, host of CNN’s Places Unknown, who quoted Ernestine Ulmer: “Life is uncertain. Eat dessert first.”

Are you eating your dessert first? Many of my contemporaries say things like:

“I always wanted to go to Ireland.”
“I have never been to London.”
“It has always been a dream of mine to see Paris.”

“Why aren’t you going?” I ask them, …

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renovation scams

How to Avoid Renovation Scams

How can you tell if a contractor might not be reputable? To avoid renovation scams, you may not want to do business with these companies.

 
Signs of a Home Improvement Scam
How can you tell if a contractor might not be reputable? You may not want to do business with someone who:

* Knocks on your door for business or offers you discounts for finding other customers
* Just happens to have materials left over from a previous job
* Pressures you for an immediate decision
* Only accepts cash, asks you to pay everything up-front, or suggests you …

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owing money

Knee Deep in Debt

Having trouble paying your bills? Getting dunning notices from creditors? Are your accounts being turned over to debt collectors? Are you worried about losing your home or your car?

 
You’re not alone. Many people face a financial crisis some time in their lives. Whether the crisis is caused by personal or family illness, the loss of a job, or overspending, it can seem overwhelming. But often, it can be overcome. Your financial situation doesn’t have to go from bad to worse.

If you or someone you know is in financial hot water, consider these options: realistic budgeting , credit …

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insurance

Homeowners and Renters Insurance

Homeowners and renters insurance policies do not cover some catastrophic losses, such as those from earthquakes, hurricanes, or floods.

 
Homeowners and renters insurance protect your personal property against damage or loss, and insures you in case someone gets hurt while on your property. You may already have insurance on your home if you have a mortgage on the property, because most lenders make insurance a condition of the loan.

Renters insurance, or tenant insurance, offers renters coverage similar to homeowners insurance. If you are a renter, do not assume your landlord carries insurance on your personal belongings; you may …

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moving house

Protect Yourself Against Housing Scams

Follow these guidelines to protect yourself against housing scams. There are scammers that attempt to take advantage of people through fraudulent practices.

 
Avoid Moving Fraud
While most moving companies are reputable businesses that do quality work, there are some that attempt to take advantage of clients through fraudulent practices. Follow these guidelines to protect yourself against moving fraud:

* Get a written estimate from several movers. Some companies quote a low price to get a contract–and later ask for more money before they remove your belongings from their truck.
* Make sure the mover has insurance and is licensed …

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stainless steel countertop

The Right Kitchen Counter Tops

Choosing the right countertop can be a difficult task.  Arguably it’s one of the most important and eye-catching aspects of your kitchen. Your countertops need to be right.

 
Designing the kitchen of your dreams is an exciting task. From paint colors to appliances and cabinets to countertops, there’s so much that goes into kitchen design. The smaller design elements like wall colors and backsplashes are easier to choose, as you don’t have to take durability in consideration when making your choices.

Choosing the right countertop can be a more difficult task. Arguably one of the most important and eye-catching …

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retirement plan

Don’t Retire Without a Plan

Are you prepared for a 30- or 40-year retirement? Whether or not you choose to work with a financial professional, it is imperative that you retire with a plan.

 
The Social Security Administration estimates that the average 65-year-old woman today will live to age 86 and a 65-year old man today will live to age 84.

Are you prepared for a 20-year retirement? How about a 30- or 40-year retirement? It could happen!

About 25% of today’s 65-year-olds will live past 90, with approximately 10% living to be older than 95, according to Social Security Administration projections.

For generations …

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stealing your identity

Identity Thieves Preying on Elderly

Thieves need only take what won’t be noticed right away. They might not even take anything at all. A camera is all they need to capture any important info.

 
It used to be that thieves were after your money. Today’s miscreants are after something more. They’re knocking on the door or calling on the phone. They’re trying to get in your email and even going through your trash.

What are they looking for?

Your identity. Your birthday, your name, your social security number, anything associated with you. It’s a very unsettling thought. However, you don’t need to be afraid, …

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false credit alert

False Credit Alarm!

Erroneous fraud alerts are on the rise.  However, banks are now less likely to completely block transactions at the point of sale thanks to real-time tech features.

 
By: Jennifer Liu

Frequently purchase with plastic?

Then you might have noticed that your bank has become a little trigger happy when it comes to credit fraud alerts lately.

And thanks to the recent uptick in financial data breaches, you can start expecting them more often.

According to a recent survey from CreditCards.com, four in 10 Americans have had a transaction blocked or questioned by their card company—and of these alerts, …

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predict data

The Power to Predict

Predictive Analytics: The power to predict who will click, buy, lie, or die. The computer literally learns from data how to predict the future behavior of individuals.

 
By: Eric Siegel

You have been predicted — by companies, governments, law enforcement, hospitals, and universities. Their computers say, “I knew you were going to do that!” These institutions are seizing upon the power to predict whether you’re going to click, buy, lie, or die.

Why? For good reason: predicting human behavior combats financial risk, fortifies healthcare, conquers spam, toughens crime fighting, and boosts sales.

How? Prediction is powered by the world’s …

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Identity Theft

Signs of Identity Theft

A few days ago Anthem notified its members that it was the target of a sophisticated external cyber attack. Although the company states that based on what they know now, there is no evidence that credit card or medical information were targeted or compromised.

In light of this news, we recommend that everyone, not only Anthem members learn how to protect themselves from identity thieves.

If you suspect that someone is misusing your personal information, acting quickly is the best way to limit the damage. Setting things straight involves some work.

How Do Thieves Get Your Information?
“I thought I …

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CES Las Vegas

2015 CES International Highlights

Although, there were many interesting exhibits at the 2015 CES, I visited only areas that might interest baby-boomer women.

 
From the many interesting exhibits at the 2015 CES, I selected the following products for my review:

AURIA

If you use earphones to listen to music or podcasts while on the move, this product will interest you. I tested them and was surprised to learn that I could hold a normal conversation with the representative while listening to music. The design is different in that they don’t actually fit into the ear canal but conform to your ears and sit …

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privacy

Protect Your Personal Information

Look for privacy statements on websites, sales materials, and forms you fill out. If a website claims to follow a set of established voluntary standards, read the standards.

 
Today, it’s quick and easy to get a credit card approved, transfer money from one account to another, renew your driver’s license, fill a prescription from your doctor at your local pharmacy, use store loyalty cards, and purchase products online. But you pay for this convenience by providing more opportunities for your personal information to be changed, stolen, or reported inaccurately. Companies can also use the information you have shared to …

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