America’s largest generation is approaching its twilight years. The oldest baby boomer turned 65 on Jan.1, and every day for the next 19 years, another 10,000 boomers will enter into the traditional retirement age bracket, according to data from the Pew Research Center.
“If you think about who boomers are as a generation, they’ve redefined every space they’ve entered. We know from all indications that they’re going to redefine what it means to age, what it means to grow older,” says Jodi Olshevski, a gerontologist and head of The Hartford Advance 50 Team.
We’re a nation indebted to our creditors: Ivy League and state-school students alike are getting a crash course on what it means to owe. Last year, student loan debt surpassed credit card debt for the first time in history, according to fastweb.com.
“College means debt. Two-thirds of undergraduate students will graduate with student loans. The average amount as of 2007 to 2008 was a little bit more than $23,186. By now, it’s probably about $25,000,” says Mark Kantrowitz, publisher of finaid.org and fastweb.com.
You love each other deeply and are committed to spending the rest of your lives together, but how much do you know about your partner’s credit history? What you don’t know, can hurt you.
With the average American carrying a balance of $7,404 on their credit cards, the debt talk is a must for couples at any stage in their relationship.
As an Ameriprise financial adviser with three school-aged children and two pre-schoolers, Ginger Ewing knows a thing or two about kids and money. She instructs her wee ones on the principles of saving with a cash allowance. Her 8-year-old recently got a crash course on the family’s $700 December utility bill. But Ewing’s brood may be an anomaly.
Kids, especially teenagers, are more plugged in than ever. Online billing and mobile banking apps have replaced trips to the bank teller. The tangibility of money seems to be lost on today’s youth. “I was at church this week, and I heard a little guy asking about a pillow pal. He said, ‘you can just click online and get one of those. Click and it shows up,’ ” Ewing says.
It’s seems like the perfect home – you’ve been wooed by a savvy, yet informative, real estate agent and the fresh-baked cookies at the open house were a nice touch.
“For many people right now who have the money and who qualify [for a mortgage] it’s a great time to purchase a home. The inventory is high, prices are low and mortgage rates are low,” says Elizabeth Mendenhall, 2011 vice president and liaison to committees for the National Association of Realtors.
The clock is ticking for anyone looking for financial aid.
The season for filing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) started on January 1. The FAFSA is your gateway to federal, state and most institutional aid. And the sooner you submit your application, the sooner you’ll secure cash and, possibly, more of it.
“There are several states [and colleges] that have a first-come, first-serve basis where they have a limited pool of funds and when they run out of money, they stop awarding money,” says Finaid.org and FastWeb.com publisher Mark Kantrowitz.
Ideally, life-altering events and financial milestones don’t fall on the same day. Not the case for Laurie Belew, who closed on a house the same day she and her husband found out they were pregnant with their first child. Now, expecting their second, Belew is facing another round of twin financial hurdles.
“We’re not very good planners because my husband is quitting his job and going back to school in August. Whether we bought a house the first time or are starting school the second time, we like to do everything at once, apparently,” says Belew, a certified financial planner with Fox, Joss & Yankee, LLC.
As a financial adviser, John Gugle believed he was the best person to look after his 68-year-old mother’s finances after his father passed away in 2008.
“Who else would look after her needs as well as I could, or who else would care as much since this is my mother? I could probably write a book about all of the things that I’ve learned from this ordeal,” says Gugle, an adviser with Alpha Financial Advisors.
As the heartache of an empty nest subsides, do you now find your home bursting at the seams with extended family? You’re not alone.
A feeble economic recovery and embattled housing market are fueling a once-popular trend in living arrangements – the multigenerational household. Aging populations are living longer and adult children are cracking under the pressure of high student debt and a lack of job opportunities, creating a double dependency for the sandwich generation.
What’s that old adage? Nothing is certain but death and taxes? Well, not in 2010.
Call it a loophole, a lapse or a hiatus – whatever way you want to spin it, the 2009 Congressional estate tax stalemate meant America’s uber-rich passed their billions on to heirs tax free this year. Or did they?