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Completed Sample IRS Form 709 Gift Tax Return for 529 Superfunding / Front-Loading

Updated for 2018. Let's say you are fortunate enough to be able to make a large contribution to a 529 college savings plan, perhaps for your children or grandchildren. You read from multiple sources that you are able to contribute up to $75,000 at … [Read the rest]

Marriott Rewards Premier Plus Card Review

The Marriott Rewards Premier Plus Credit Card is the new co-branded card from Chase and the newly-merged Marriott/Starwood/Ritz-Carlton rewards program. The current bonus is 75,000 bonus Marriott Rewards points after spending $3,000 in 3 months. … [Read the rest]

Open University: UK-Based, Regionally US-Accredited Online Bachelor’s Degrees

If you are interested in online college education, definitely read How Open University Works: An Insider’s Perspective by Manoel Cortes Mendez. The Open University (OU) is a public, nonprofit UK university that was founded in 1969 with a focus on … [Read the rest]

Barron’s Best Stock Brokerage Rankings 2018

Barron's has released their 2018 online broker rankings. The considerations include trading experience/technology, usability, mobile trading, range of offerings, research tools, customer service, and cost. The Barron's list always comes from the … [Read the rest]

Best Interest Rates on Cash – May 2018

Interest rates are rising. Rate-chasing is becoming more worthwhile again. Here is my monthly roundup of the best safe rates available, roughly sorted from shortest to longest maturities. Check out my Ultimate Rate-Chaser Calculator to get an idea … [Read the rest]

Savings I Bonds May 2018 Interest Rate: 2.22% Inflation Rate, 0.30% Fixed Rate

Update 5/1/18. The fixed rate will be 0.30% for I bonds issued from May 1, 2018 through October 31, 2018. The variable inflation-indexed rate for this 6-month period will be 2.22% (as was predicted). The total rate on any specific bond is the sum … [Read the rest]

Tipping Chart: Low vs. Average vs. High Tipper Survey

Tipping. Everyone's got an opinion. The thing I hate most about tipping is the feeling of "I'm not doing this right". To better understand it, I read a book about tipping by a veteran waiter. There are now several "tipping guides", but I like … [Read the rest]

Amazon Price Hike: Gift of Prime Membership Still $99

Amazon Prime has announced the following price increases to $119 per year: Starting May 11, 2018, new members will be charged $119/year for an annual Prime membership and $59/year for an annual Prime Student membership. Starting June 16, 2018, … [Read the rest]

Chase Freedom Unlimited Alternative Offer: 3% Cash Back During First Year

The Chase Freedom Unlimited credit card usually offers an upfront $150 sign-up bonus along with flat 1.5% cash back on all purchases (no caps). However, it looks like they are testing out this alternative offer where instead of an upfront bonus, … [Read the rest]

Mint Mobile: Unlimited Talk, Text, and 3 GB LTE Data For $15/Month + Free SIM

A few readers pointed out Mint Mobile (formerly MintSIM) as another T-Mobile MVNO with cheap plans. Their unique proposition is that they offer discounts if you prepay in advance for 3, 6, or 12 months. Buy in bulk, save money. Right now, they … [Read the rest]

Betterment Review: Customized Asset Allocation, Human Financial Advisors

Updated April 2018 with custom ETF allocations. Betterment is an independent hybrid digital/human advisor that will manage a diversified mix of low-cost index funds and help you decide how much you'll need to save for retirement. (By independent, … [Read the rest]

Audible Returning Trial Members: 2 Free AudioBooks + $10 Amazon Gift Card (Targeted)

If you've already done a free trial of and gotten some free audiobooks... Amazon might like to offer you another trial with two more free audiobooks plus a $10 Amazon gift card! This offer may be targeted and appears to be open to … [Read the rest]