4: Fees to Avoid, 4: Things Homebuyers Shouldn’t Say, 8: Things Identity Thieves Want to Steal, and more bits…

Below are five excellent articles. The first article discuss 4 fees that you should never pay. There are some fees that are unavoidable, but there are others that you should never, ever be paying. You are simply throwing your money away; and you probably are working way to hard to be throwing it away unnecessarily.

The second featured article really should scare you. It highlights all of the information that identity thieves are trying to get from you. If they have access to any of these 8 personal identity numbers, they can cause you considerable financial pain. Do everything that you can to guard and protect these numbers.

The next article is about home buying; more specifically four things that potential homebuyers ought never to say during the home buying negotiation process.

The last two article are about investing and your risk tolerance. Many people get caught up in bull markets and forget the anguish they felt during the bear markets. These articles delve into that further. Really good stuff. Check them out…

4 Fees You Shouldn’t Be Paying Creating a budget may not be at the top of your can’t-wait-to-do list, but it should be on your to-do list. The idea of a budget is to look at the money you have coming in and compare it with the money you have going out. It gives you a way to see where you are wasting money and how you can redirect it to smarter uses. One of the big things a budget can show you is money leaks, like fees you’re paying often even though they’re preventable. Here are some fees you can cut from your life today to save money…

8 Numbers Identity Thieves Want to Steal From You According to the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse Chronology of Data Breaches tracking tool, at least 867,254,692 records were exposed through data breaches between 2005 and May 28, 2014. The Milken Institute says the number of compromised records was more than 1.1 billion between 2004-2012. The Identity Theft Resource Center reported 91,982,172 exposed records in 2013 alone. Frankly, it really doesn’t matter who is right. The amount of information out there is simply staggering.

4 Things Homebuyers Should Never Say You don’t need to be a world-class negotiator to nab a great deal on your dream home. More often, it’s a matter of knowing what not to say. One errant comment or paperwork misstep can compromise your negotiating position. Playing it close to the vest around home sellers and listing agents is critical. So is flexibility. Homebuyers who conflate wants and needs can cost themselves big time. Here’s a look at four messages and mindsets buyers should avoid broadcasting.

Building Your Optimum Portfolio Somewhere out there is the perfect equity portfolio. Of the infinite number of portfolios you could form, the perfect equity portfolio is the one that generates the highest return per unit of risk. That’s the equity portfolio that everyone in the world would want to own. If you put a gun to my head I might guess that over the long haul that portfolio might return between 8 and 11 percent. Even at the low end that’s a healthy real return over inflation. Of course, in the shorter term returns may be radically different. You do remember 2009 don’t you? Stock portfolios carry a substantial level of risk. And even the perfect equity portfolio is still going to carry the full measure of risk. Not everyone is going to be comfortable with that much risk. And, for good economic reasons some investors will need short term liquidity.

 It’s time to check your risk tolerance, honestly How risk tolerant are you, really? Sure, stocks are down a tad, but they’re still near an all-time high. And that makes it an ideal time to reexamine your risk tolerance and try to get in touch with your true feelings about investing. There’s nothing like a raging five-year bull to make us forget our pain. During the financial collapse, I wrote that investors should write down their pain with investing in that moment, and then read it when stocks had recovered. Remembering that pain is a key to investing and breaking the fear-and-greed cycle. And if you took a risk profile questionnaire recently, be very skeptical of the result.

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