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The CreditGUARD of America Blog

Home Buying: Turnkey vs. Fixer Upper Homes

Move-in Ready Homes There are two main reasons you’d need to buy a place that is ready for you to move in. FHA (Federal Housing Administration) loan restrictions Basically, you can’t buy a true fixer-upper with an FHA loan. There are provisions that exist to protect buyers — this means under an FHA loan, you […]

Understanding Home Equity

What is Home Equity? Home equity is the amount that your home is worth minus any outstanding mortgage loan balances. For example, if you purchase a home valued at $200,000 with a $150,000 mortgage, you have $50,000 equity in your home. Your home equity will most likely grow over time as the value of your […]

The Dangers of Only Paying the Minimum Payment

Why Is It Dangerous to Only Pay the Minimum Payment? Most credit cards make you pay a minimum payment every month to keep your payment schedule current. This minimum is typically an amount based on a percentage of your balance but can be a fixed amount. If your wallet is tight, it can be tempting […]

Home Buying: Understanding Short Sales, Foreclosures and Auctions

Home Buying: What You Need To Know Buying a home can seem like an overwhelming process. On top of everything you will need to know about how to buy a home, you should also know what happens if you can no longer make your mortgage payments. While mortgages are secured debt (meaning that the house […]

Frugal Family: How Meal Planning Saves Money

What is Meal Planning and How Can it Help Save Money Meal planning is one of the easiest ways to help you and your family save time and money by planning out each meal of the week and sticking to this list when shopping for groceries. Saving money isn’t the only benefit of meal planning. […]

How Much Does it Cost to Withdraw from 401(k)?

Early 401(k) Distribution Financial hardships can come out of nowhere: an unforeseen medical emergency, a natural disaster, an unexpected house repair, or loss of a job can jostle even those most well-prepared financially. During this setback, it may be tempting to dip into your retirement savings. But first it is necessary to understand the true […]

Frugal Family: Buying New vs Used

New vs. Used?: How and When to Save Money One of the best and easiest ways to save money for your family is to buy used items whenever possible. In most cases, you’ll be just as happy with the item and get just as much functionality as you would with a new one for a […]

5 Money Saving Tips for Renters

  How to Maintain Your Financial Well-Being While Renting For some people, renting is the best option. If you have little job security, know you might not stay in the same place for two years, or you’re not financially ready to buy a home, renting is probably the best option. Just because you’re renting doesn’t […]

Renting vs. Owning: 3 Key Considerations

Whether it’s your first time on your own or you want to make the switch from renting an apartment to owning your own home, housing decisions can seem both exciting and intimidating. The best way to make your dreams come true is through research of your needs and understanding of where you stand with your […]

Best Affordable Fun Spring Activities

With the arrival of March comes springtime, bringing with it warmer temperatures, greener lawns and lots of color to the outdoors. At this time of year, nature beckons to families who have been cooped up in the cold to reconnect with one another in the sunshine. Lots of springtime traditions provide you with fun family […]