Transcript: Chat with Financial Planner Denisa Tova Fri. 8/3

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Chat live with certified financial planner Denisa Tova, who answers your financial questions every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Click below to read a transcript of Friday morning’s chat.

7:48
Denisa Tova:

I am standing by to take your money questions.

Wednesday August 1, 2012 7:48 Denisa Tova
7:53
[Comment From GuestGuest: ]

Denisa, what was the name of the website to hold you accountable?

Wednesday August 1, 2012 7:53 Guest
7:53
Denisa Tova:

Hi, the site is Stickk.com

Wednesday August 1, 2012 7:53 Denisa Tova
7:53
[Comment From ColeenColeen: ]

What’s the best way to start saving money for education?

Wednesday August 1, 2012 7:53 Coleen
7:54
Denisa Tova:

Hi Coleen,
By signing up for automatic savings from your pay check. 529 College Savings Plan is one option to save for college education.

Wednesday August 1, 2012 7:54 Denisa Tova
7:54
[Comment From GuestGuest: ]

Hi Denisa. So my husband and I are finally makin a little more money. We have several credit cards and we want to pay them off. My husband had suggested that we take one credit card and pay more, while the other cards we pay the minimum until we can pay off the one card. Then take the next card and do the same thing. What is the best way to pay off our cards?

Wednesday August 1, 2012 7:54 Guest
7:57
Denisa Tova:

Hi,
This approach is also known as the ‘snowball’ method and personally my favorite. You can see a quick progress and it will motivate you to keep going and pay off your debts faster. Some people find it helpful to make a visual aid (like a list) that the can update and hang it up somewhere where they can see it.

Wednesday August 1, 2012 7:57 Denisa Tova
7:58
[Comment From AndyAndy: ]

Hello Denisa – great savings tips. How much should I put into my 401k?

Wednesday August 1, 2012 7:58 Andy
7:58
[Comment From AndyAndy: ]

What about toward emergency short terms saviings?

Wednesday August 1, 2012 7:58 Andy
7:59
Denisa Tova:

Thanks Andy!
Id say at a minimum as much as your employer matches. As for emergency cushion – 4-6 months worth of your basic living expenses would be ideal but saving $500 will be a great start :)

Wednesday August 1, 2012 7:59 Denisa Tova
7:59
[Comment From GuestGuest: ]

Thanks Denisa. We will try that and hopefully be debtfree!

Wednesday August 1, 2012 7:59 Guest
7:59
Denisa Tova:

You are half way there – you have the right mindset! :)

Wednesday August 1, 2012 7:59 Denisa Tova
8:13
[Comment From GuestGuest: ]

If my 401k investing options are limited and not rewarding does it make sense to invest elsewhere?

Wednesday August 1, 2012 8:13 Guest
8:14
Denisa Tova:

Hi Guest,
Absolutely. Take the match if your employer offers it and invest the rest of your money into an IRA . Find a custodian that offers a wide selection of investment options (across all asset classes).

Wednesday August 1, 2012 8:14 Denisa Tova
8:14
[Comment From LisaLisa: ]

My question is we have credit card debt and we may have layoffs coming at work – should i start putting money in a savings account or focus on paying extra towards credit cards? – thank you

Wednesday August 1, 2012 8:14 Lisa
8:15
Denisa Tova:

Hi Lisa,
For now, only stick with min payments on your credit cards until you build up your emergency fund.

Wednesday August 1, 2012 8:15 Denisa Tova
8:15
[Comment From GuestGuest: ]

Do you believe colorado home values are increasing?

Wednesday August 1, 2012 8:15 Guest
8:16
Denisa Tova:

Hi Guest
I think in general they are but certain areas are doing better than others.

Wednesday August 1, 2012 8:16 Denisa Tova
8:16
[Comment From JanJan: ]

Your savings tips made sense. How can I check out an online bank to make sure it is sound? I love your segments

Wednesday August 1, 2012 8:16 Jan
8:17
Denisa Tova:

Hi Jan,
Make sure it is FDIC insured; check on FDIC.govfor a list of banks that are insured and solvent.

Wednesday August 1, 2012 8:17 Denisa Tova
8:46
[Comment From GuestGuest: ]

How do you feel about life insurance for children? do you have a rule of thumb amount for adult coverage?

Wednesday August 1, 2012 8:46 Guest
8:48
Denisa Tova:

Hi Guest,
I think getting a coverage early on a child is a great idea. This way they will have a life insurance in place that can stay with them and they don’t have to worry about insuarabiity later on in life. I am not a fan of rules of thumb but generally something like $50K or $75K rider (addition to the parent’s) policy is a good way to start.

Wednesday August 1, 2012 8:48 Denisa Tova
8:48
[Comment From JohnnieJohnnie: ]

When taking money from your own business, what is the vehicle to put it in, (legally), to pay the least amount of taxes? For example, a SEP, self directed 401k, etc.

Wednesday August 1, 2012 8:48 Johnnie
8:48
[Comment From JohnnieJohnnie: ]

Should I pay my self a salary from my business?

Wednesday August 1, 2012 8:48 Johnnie
8:50
Denisa Tova:

Hi Johnie,
Actually contributing to any business sponsored plan will give you a tax deduction.
As for paying yourself a salary, that depends on the cash flow of our business, but ulimately that is the idea – to reap the benefits from the business, make money, so I would hope you will be able to pay yourself.