• Are you interested in winning a little extra holiday spending money? You don’t have to answer that – everyone is interested in extra money! Good news! Today marks the beginning of the Quicken Loans Cyber Monday ThanksGiveaway!

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  • Save some time, and find out what this year’s hot holiday toys are before the big rush.

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  • Thanksgiving is quickly approaching, and if you’re hosting the dinner this year, it’s time to start planning. That’s why I’ve put together a helpful Thanksgiving checklist to relieve some of the stress. There’s even a downloadable PDF version so you can check it off as you go!

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Bonds Drop Following Decline in Job Claims Report – Market Update

Bonds Drop Following Decline in Job Claims Report – Market Update

Bonds opened relatively unchanged this morning and then subsequently dropped following a decline in the initial job claims report. In other news, the European Central Bank raised their rates by .25 percent in an effort to curb inflation. That decision came not long after Portugal put in a request for a bailout, which estimates say could reach $130 billion, and also at a time when many countries are in need of capital.

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It’s the Right Time to Buy a Home

It’s the Right Time to Buy a Home

Fortune Magazine published a great article this week talking about how the real estate market is on its way back to recovery and wanted to share it. Signs of Housing Recovery We think it’s a compelling article that supports our belief that it is a great time to purchase a home due to low home prices and historic low mortgage interest rates. While gold or stock options may be appealing, take another look at housing – it may just be the most attractive asset in the American portfolio today.  Here’s why: Home inventory is starting to decline Buying a home is affordable Home Inventory is Starting to Decline According to a three-decade tracking study done by Metrostudy, soon there will be a shortage of homes. Subsequently, there will also be a boost in home prices.  For decades, Metrostudy had inspectors literally drive through 45,000 subdivisions from Baltimore to Sacramento to record whether each lot contained a finished house, one that’s under construction or one that had been sold. They covered 65% of the U.S. housing market. The two most important metrics Metrostudy used to determine whether there is a surplus or shortage are the number of homes that are vacant and for sale in each city, and the number of months it takes to sell them. The results show that there is a reversal of the new-home explosion that caused the housing price decline a few years ago.   There are two factors that are helping the recovery in residential…

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Need To Improve Your Credit Score? Is Your Credit Score Holding You Back? Get Your Quizzle On!

Need To Improve Your Credit Score? Is Your Credit Score Holding You Back? Get Your Quizzle On!

If you thought about buying a home and during the loan application process you realized that your credit score was holding you back – don’t worry, you’re not alone! In fact, below-average credit scores are one of the most common reasons why mortgage applications are denied. A Good Way to Raise Your Credit Score:  Dispute and Remove Errors! According to a survey done by the US Public Interest Research Groups, 8 out of 10 credit reports contain some kind of mistake and some of these mistakes are serious. You can often raise your credit score by disputing and fixing mistakes in your credit report by contacting the three main credit bureaus, Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. A Good Way to Monitor Your Credit Score:  Use Quizzle! One way to easily start monitoring your credit score is by creating a profile at Quizzle.com. What is Quizzle, you ask? It’s a free personal finance site that helps you get a better understanding of your credit and an easy way to manage your home, money and credit in one spot. You basically answer a few questions about your financial status and BOOM- you get your free instant credit report plus much more. Quizzle also gives your credit score a grade, shows you how many points you could improve your credit by (based on your credit report) and offers tips and tools to help you raise your credit score. They help you create a budget and come up with a plan to pay off debt…

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What Do You Really Pay in Taxes Over Your Lifetime?

What Do You Really Pay in Taxes Over Your Lifetime?

The following is from Richard Barrington who writes for MoneyRates.com about financial topics including bank rates. His opinions do not necessarily reflect those of Quicken Loans.   Sometimes, the biggest expenses turn out to be the ones you pay little by little over a long period of time. These expenses come out of your wallet incrementally, so they may not seem so bad from paycheck to paycheck, but when you add up all the charges, the result can be shocking. A perfect example: your lifetime tax bill. According to an analysis by MoneyRates.com, even if you earn an average income over the course of your lifetime, your federal tax bill could total in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. If you are lucky enough to earn a six-figure income, then you might be looking at a million-dollar lifetime tax bill. Something to think about as you take a look at 2011 income tax brackets. Your lifetime tax bill: crunching the numbers Of course, there are dozens of variables that will determine your lifetime tax bill, but a straightforward example is a good place to start for illustration purposes. Assume a single person using standard exemptions and deductions, and earning an average wage. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average income across all occupations in the U.S. is $43,460. Under the circumstances described, this taxpayer would have a tax bill of $4,713 on a 2010 federal tax return. Project that over the course of a 40-year career, and this taxpayer would…

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