Wall Street Journal’s Best Free Online Tools for Personal Finance

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Mint.com automatically aggregates all your online financial data and then keeps track of credit cards, home loans and bank and brokerage accounts all in one place. It also keeps track of how your investments are performing, and what you are spending and saving. It helps you to budget better by automatically displaying how much you spend in any given category.

Learning is a Family Thing!

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The "Learning is a Family Thing" (LIFT) Program is a series of interactive sessions designed to enhance family, health, financial, and workplace skills for everyone in the family. The upcoming session at AADL is called Dollars and Sense, which focuses on credit management, budgeting, and financial smarts for all ages. There will be activities for the whole family, prizes, raffles, and giveaways, and snacks and drinks will be provided. Join us on Sunday, June 7 from 2 to 4 pm on the fourth floor of the downtown library.

Morningstar Investment Database Computer Training Class

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Four spots are still available for the Morningstar Investment Database Class being held at the Downtown Library Computer Training Center on Wednesday, April 29th from 4-5 pm.

Keep that promise you made on April 15th to get a handle on your investments by learning how to use the Morningstar Database—ranked by Barron’s and Forbes as one of the top investing sites. Now, more than ever, it pays to have solid, unbiased information to make investment decisions. Register online or by calling 327-4555.

Learning is a Family Thing

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The Learning is a Family Thing (LIFT) Program is a series of four interactive sessions designed to enhance family, health, financial, and workplace skills for everyone in the family!
The four sessions will address:
* Reading Together: Reading as a family; using effective communication skills and study techniques.
* Healthy Families: Keeping your family healthy through nutrition, exercise, and education.
* Dollars and Sense: Credit management, budgeting, and financial smarts for all ages.

American Credit Repair: Everything U Need to Know About Raising Your Credit Score

Ok, the title alone almost says it all. And who has a credit score that couldn’t use a bit of a boost? Do you know how to find your score? Do you know the five main factors that make up your score and the practice which is its best indicator? Did you know that, with a carefully worded letter to your creditor (sample given), you can have a late payment expunged from your report? What should you do first if your report has multiple problems?

Credit, and reporting your credit activity, is a big game in America. But it is a game that you can learn to play as well as your creditors. Perhaps even learn to win. There is a wealth of information here to help you learn the rules of the game and strategize a new reality to the story of your credit report. Ready-to-print forms, sample letters and an accompanying cd allow you to apply triage to your score on your own. The author also maintains a website which may help.

Need Some Help?

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Washtenaw County MSU Extension is teaching Family Consumer Science Programs on useful subjects such as How to Talk So Kids Will Listen, Relax- Alternative to Anger, and Paying Down Debt. They also offer financial resources on their website. Be sure to check them out!

2009 Financial Action Plan

With the financial markets the way they are you may be looking to have more concrete plans for the future. Suze Orman has just released a book about how to plan for specific life situations. AADL doesn't have a copy yet, but if you hurry (before 11:59 pm CT tomorrow, Jan 15 2009) then you can grab a free download of the book from Oprah's site. The file is in PDF format.

Here is Suze's recent appearance on Larry King Live:

If you miss the download we do have many other books by Suze Orman and also DVD's of some of her programs like The 9 steps to financial freedom. If your working on some financial resolutions for the new year you might also be interested in a post over at the Wesabe Blog titled Five Ways To Make Any Financial Resolution A Success.

Pulp

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Buffett or Buttons?

SmartMoney - December 2008 Issue
Page 17 - Make Money Like Buffett - Find out how preferred shares are sometimes yielding more and why.
Some books about Warren Buffett in our collection:
Even Buffett isn't perfect... Buffettology... Warren Buffett and the interpretation of financial statements...

Threads - November 2008 Issue
Page 30 - For the Love of Buttons - The stock market is not your only source of wealth, look to your buttons. Use the tricks provided (using your teeth, hot needles and your sense of smell and hearing) to determine exactly what your buttons are made of (china, glass, shell, porcelain, metal, or ivory).
Some books about buttons in our collection:
The book of buttons Buttons : the collector's guide...

Estate Planning

Have you been thinking about getting your affairs in order? It is a necessary but daunting task. A recent survey estimates that upwards of 60% of Americans do not have a will. If you keel over without a will or a living trust, probate court makes all the decisions. That means a big, sad mess for your surviving loved ones.

Get Money Smart Now

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Washtenaw County will be host to Michigan Money Smart Week Events April 19 - 23. Start with the Money Smart Workshop Saturday, April 19, at the UAW Local 849 Hall, 454 Chidester, in Ypsilanti. You'll learn how to improve your budgeting skills, get out of debt and begin to save. The Money Smart Brown Bag Lunches will further your financial literacy. Space is limited at all events so register now at 734.222-3943 or jonest@ewashtenaw.org.

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