Estate Planning Basics

Written by Amy Nichols


You have probably accomplished a great deal with your life. Overrepparttar years you have worked, planned and saved. Perhaps you have even made some sacrifices to achieve your current level of success. Itís a sure bet that you will want to pass along your accumulated assets rather than hand them over for court costs, taxes or attorney fees.

Estate planning isrepparttar 148699 relatively simple process by which you prepare legal documents outlining your wishes for your estate upon your death. It can be difficult to plan forrepparttar 148700 end of your life, but this planning is necessary to protect your family and your assets.

What is your estate?

Your estate refers to your property, those things you own, including your total assets and liabilities. Your property includes your home, car, accounts (i.e. bank, retirement, and brokerage), jewelry, insurance policies and so forth.

The language of estate planning

It is understandable thatrepparttar 148701 idea of planning for your family after die can be a little frightening. Familiarity withrepparttar 148702 terms used in estate planning will help you begin to develop some comfort withrepparttar 148703 process.

Estate: Refers to your property or those things that you own.

Property: Includes two categories, real (as in real estate/your home(s) and personal, which includes everything else such as stocks, bank accounts, car(s), jewelry, and so forth.

Intestate: Is a pre, or non-planning state. Dying intestate means that you have died without creating a will or trust to outline your desires for distribution of your estate. Trust: Eliminates many ofrepparttar 148704 financial risks in planning forrepparttar 148705 transfer of your estate from you to your heirs upon your death. Risks include taxes, probate, lawyers, creditors, judgments, etc. A trust can provide forrepparttar 148706 management of your estate if you become incapacitated as well reduce death taxes and assure a smooth transfer of your property according to your wishes. Trusts can be revocable or irrevocable. Talk with your tax or legal advisor aboutrepparttar 148707 benefits of each.

Common Credit Score Myths

Written by Gary Gresham


A lot of credit score myths about fico score ratings get spread around and some of them are just outdated information. Sometimes even lenders can give yourepparttar wrong advice and it can get confusing. Butrepparttar 148679 bottom line is bad information can cost you money no matter who you get it from.

Fico score ratings are used for most mortgage lending, which means, you need to know what will hurt or help your credit score points. To make it clear, here are some ofrepparttar 148680 most common credit score myths.

* Checking your credit report will hurt your credit score

Checking your own credit report and credit score counts as a soft inquiry and does not go against your score. However, if anyone else like a lender or credit card company is checking your credit report, this is considered a hard inquiry and will generally knock off about 5 credit score points.

The credit score rating system treats multiple inquiries in a 14-day period as just one inquiry. The system ignores all inquiries made within 30 days prior torepparttar 148681 dayrepparttar 148682 credit score is computed. So if you want to minimizerepparttar 148683 damage from credit inquiries, shop for a loan in that short period of time.

* Closing old accounts will improve your credit report score

Sometimes even lenders will tell you to close your old and inactive accounts as a way for improving your credit report score. In most cases, closing old accounts will actually haverepparttar 148684 opposite effect withrepparttar 148685 current credit score rating system.

Canceling old credit accounts can actually lower your credit score because it makes your credit history appear shorter. If you want to reduce your levels of available credit, it's better to reduce or close new accounts instead. Applying for new credit is more likely to lower your score.

* You need to check more than just FICO score rating

If you ever hear this from anyone, consider it a red flag. All ofrepparttar 148686 three major credit reporting bureaus offer FICO credit score ratings usingrepparttar 148687 formula developed by Fair, Isaac. Even though each one givesrepparttar 148688 scores a different name you only need a fico score rating fromrepparttar 148689 three major credit reporting bureaus.

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