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What is AARP?

One of the largest and most influential groups in the country is the American Association of Retired Persons, or AARP. It is a nonprofit organization whose mission is the improvement of the quality of life for its members. The group is one of the largest entities in the country, and it’s free monthly magazine has a higher circulation than any other publication in the United States. Its membership consists of over 40 million American citizens over the age of 50. Members receive many benefits each year, including many discounts and coupons on food, lodging, travel, and so on, for dues around $20 per person per year. Continue reading...

What is the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP)?

In 2009 the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) commissioned the HARP program to help Americans upside-down on mortgages to get approved for mortgage refinancing. This is only available to people whose mortgages are already owned by Freddie Mae and Freddie Mac. Many Americans find themselves upside-down, or underwater, on their home mortgages, particularly after the housing bubble popped in 2008. To be underwater means that there is more owed on the loan than the home can serve as collateral for. Continue reading...

What is a No-Appraisal Mortgage?

Most mortgages require that an appraisal or at least inspection is done before any loan is made. There are exceptions to this, in the form of no-appraisal mortgages which are available to lower-income homeowners, qualifying members of the military and its veterans, and some farmers. Most no-appraisal loans are through federal programs such as HARP, FHA, and the VA. The purpose of these loans is to keep people in their homes and to keep the economy relatively stable. These are generally not first mortgages, but are relief, modification, and refinancing arrangements to qualifying homeowners that already have a mortgage outstanding. Continue reading...

What is a Home Debtor?

In contrast to the term “home owner,” home debtor is reserved for those who will seemingly never be able to pay off the mortgage(s) on their home, or who have already defaulted. Most Americans live in homes that they pay on, but are still primarily owned by the bank that loaned them money. Banks have insurance to protect them against mortgage defaults. Home mortgage loans are the primary way that Americans by homes today. Continue reading...

What is the Home Affordability and Stability Plan (HASP)?

HASP came into being in 2009 in response to the housing market crash that made life very difficult for many Americans. Also known as the Making Home Affordable Plan. It called for the creation of various programs and support for lending institutions, consumers, and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The Homeowner Affordability and Stability Program (HASP) has three main parts. Part one is to aid responsible homeowners who are suffering from falling home prices and have become underwater on their mortgages. Continue reading...

What Is American Association of Retired Persons?

If you're 50 years old or older, whether you're working or retired, there's an organization dedicated to making your life better and more affordable: the American Association of Retired Persons, better known as AARP. With over 38 million members, AARP is America's leading organization for individuals aged 50 and above. It is a nonprofit, nonpartisan entity committed to empowering older Americans in various aspects of life. Continue reading...

Should I Buy a Medigap Policy?

There are pros and cons to buying so-called Medigap coverage, and it can depend on how much medical care and services you anticipate needing. They cover all or nearly all of the out-of-pocket costs left over by Part A and Part B, but they don’t offer Part D coverage. Obviously, buying a Medigap policy will mean additional costs. If you have the means and you’re looking to extend your medical insurance to areas not covered by Medicare Part A and B (original Medicare), it might be a good option. Continue reading...

How Do You Analyze Mid-Cap Stocks to Find the Investment 'Sweet Spot' ?

Mid-cap stocks represent companies that fall between large-cap and small-cap in terms of market capitalization. Market capitalization is determined by multiplying a company’s outstanding shares by the value of each share. These stocks often have market capitalizations ranging from $2 billion to $10 billion. Just like golfers aim for the "sweet spot" on the club head for maximum efficiency, investing in mid-cap stocks can produce impressive results. Continue reading...

What Does Medicaid Cover?

Medicaid will cover many things, but it is reserved for those without enough assets to get such care on their own or to pay for other coverage. Some examples of covered services include checkups and childbirth for low income pregnant women, and nursing home care for low-income elderly people with long term care needs. Medicaid covers a very wide range of medical costs, including hospital expenses, visits to the doctor, nursing home expenses, and so on. Continue reading...

Should I Buy a Long-Term Care Policy?

Whether you should own a long-term care insurance policy depends on a myriad of factors, including but not limited to affordability, family medical history, your liquid net worth and your cash flow needs in retirement. It also depends on your ability to make consistent premium payments to ensure your policy stays in force over time. Since a Long-Term Care plan requires you to keep paying the (steep) premium until you actually start to use the coverage – or you’ll lose it, it may not be a great idea to buy the policy if you have financial insecurities in the near (or even distant) future. Continue reading...

Best Stocks in the Specialty Stores Theme

The world of investing is vast and varied, with opportunities spanning across various industries and sectors. One such sector that has consistently shown promise is the Specialty Stores Theme. In this article, we will delve into this theme and take a closer look at some of the top companies that make it shine. Continue reading...

What was the Best Day for the Markets?

The best day for the markets, in terms of the largest single-day point gain for the Dow Jones Industrial Average, was October 13th, 2008. It happened when the Dow closed up 936 points in response to seemingly positive news about the handling of the ongoing financial crisis. The market would fall much further however before the next uptrend began, on March 9, 2009. In percentage terms, the biggest gain for the Dow came on March 15, 1933, when the index shot up over 15% (8.26 points) in response to Franklin D. Roosevelt's (FDR) Emergency Banking Act. Continue reading...

What were the key factors contributing to the market's decline in the fall of 2008?

Unlocking the 2008 Financial Crisis: Explore the Explosive Subprime Market Growth, Complex Instruments, & Government Bailouts. Learn from history, secure the future. #FinancialCrisis2008 #SubprimeMarket #EconomicHistory Continue reading...