Car buying vs. leasing

Should I Buy or Lease a Car?

by Sophia Bera August 9, 2017

Getting a car is one of the biggest financial decisions you’ll make, and it’s one that can affect your cash flow for years. Beyond the cost of the car, you’ll have to pay for maintenance, fuel, insurance, and parking. A car can cost you just over $700 per month on average, according to AAA (and […]

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travel hacking

Hacking Your Credit Card Rewards

by Sophia Bera July 28, 2017

So you want to go to Thailand for three weeks when you finish your MBA, but you’re concerned about paying for a plane ticket. However, did you know it’s only 80,000 United miles (plus taxes and fees) to fly round trip to Asia from the U.S.? Or maybe you want to go to Italy for […]

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HSAs

Hacking Your HSA

by Sophia Bera July 19, 2017

If your health insurance plan is a High-Deductible Health Plan (HDHP), you may be eligible to contribute to a Health Savings Account (HSA). Unfortunately, HDHPs and HSAs confuse a lot of people, and it’s important to understand how they work so you can use them to your advantage. HDHPs are attractive to many people because […]

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Roth IRA

Hacking Your Roth IRA

by Sophia Bera July 12, 2017

You know the often-suggested retirement savings checklist: If your employer offers a 401(k), contribute enough to get a match. Max out a Roth IRA if you qualify. Go back to your 401(k) and work toward contributing the maximum of $18,000 per year. Generally, you fund these accounts for the long-term, because early withdrawals can lead […]

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Online financial tools

The Best Financial Tools, Apps, and Calculators I Recommend All the Time

by Sophia Bera June 28, 2017

Managing and automating your finances has never been easier. There are so many online and mobile tools available (most for free!) that setting yourself up for financial success involves little more than 30 minutes of set-up and a few minutes of monitoring a month. You’re more likely to meet your financial goals if those goals […]

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Online experts

My Favorite Online Experts

by Sophia Bera June 21, 2017

Helping a client with their financial plan involves a lot of conversations about numerical data. We chat about their current net worth, their debts, the amount they have in savings, and their financial goals like buying a home or retiring. My clients are in a phase of life that comes with a ton of change […]

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blogs and podcasts

Personal Finance Blogs and Podcasts to Add to Your List

by Sophia Bera June 14, 2017

Summer’s a quiet time for financial planners. Lots of clients worry about money in January after setting New Year’s resolutions, or in April when taxes are due. For now, everyone’s going on vacation! But summer is a great time to learn about personal finance. You’ve got time to fill on long flights, after all! And […]

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kids and money

How to Teach Your Kids to Create Their Own Money Values

by Sophia Bera May 24, 2017

Teaching your kids about financial literacy is really important. But being money-savvy isn’t just about knowing how to count coins in kindergarten, or understanding how credit cards work in the 12th grade. Sure, your kids will eventually learn how to read a bank statement and calculate compound interest, but money is about more than that. […]

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Kids and money

How to Teach Your Kids About Money

by Sophia Bera May 17, 2017

Over the years I’ve worked with many people who graduated from college without a clue about money. They didn’t know how to budget, couldn’t tell if they were getting a good deal on a purchase, and ran up credit card debt because they didn’t understand how credit works. Unfortunately, financial literacy isn’t taught in schools […]

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529 plans and saving for college

529 Plans and How to Save for Your Child’s College Education

by Sophia Bera May 10, 2017

At Gen Y Planning, we work with a lot of clients that are thinking about having kids in the next few years, or already have young children. As you can imagine, I get asked about saving for college a lot. With the cost of college going up about 5% a year, today’s newborns can expect […]

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