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Tara Finnegan Coates


Tara Finnegan Coates is part of AARP Media's Content Creation Team. She blogs regularly on a variety of financial topics.

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Tara Finnegan Coates'sPosts

How Long Should I Keep Tax Documents?

Posted on 02/6/2013 by | Money | Comments

Money & SavingsThe following is a guest post by Jim Young. Ever wonder how long you really need to hold on to your tax documents? Depending on which expert you ask, you might get a range of responses ranging from a few years to a lifetime. See also: Find an AARP Foundation Tax-Aide location near you. IRS Publication 552 gives you a direct answer and says that you are required to keep records as long as they may be needed for the …

Tax Deductions and Your Job Search

Posted on 01/24/2013 by | Money | Comments

WorkThe following is a guest post by Alan Kalman.  Previously, I discussed the tax consequences of losing your job. But did you know that there are certain tax deductions you can take while looking for your next job (even if you don’t get hired)? These include: Employment and outplacement agency fees. Amounts spent for preparing and mailing resumes. Mileage and parking expenses for interviews Going back to college to take some courses to improve your skills. (In this case, you may …

Tune in to “The Cheap Life”

Posted on 01/15/2013 by | Money | Comments

Entertainment | Money & SavingsToday marks the launch of a new YouTube series produced by AARP called The Cheap Life, starring the “Ultimate Cheapskate” Jeff Yeager. Each week, Jeff will discuss how you can have fun saving money and live the ‘good life’ at a fraction of the cost. The Cheap Life will offer plenty of tips on how to stretch your hard-earned dollars. And, of course, you’ll have plenty of chances to win gift card prizes and cheapskate schwag. So tune in. Be sure to subscribe to The Cheap Life, just click …

Job Loss and Your Taxes

Posted on 01/8/2013 by | Money | Comments

WorkThe following is a guest post by Alan Kalman. Job loss can affect your tax situation in many ways. Here are some things to keep in mind as you are preparing to file your taxes. Your employer may provide you with severance pay or accrued vacation pay or accrued sick pay. These payments are all taxable compensation. A large severance check could easily bump you into a larger tax bracket. If you qualify for and receive unemployment compensation benefits, these …

Family and Money Matters: Your Debt Challenge

Posted on 01/2/2013 by | Money | Comments

Home & Family | Money & SavingsThe saying goes: “A fool and his money are soon parted.” But even folks who pride themselves on being financially savvy sometimes have trouble saying ‘No’ to lending money to family and friends – even when they can’t afford to do so. See also: Tell us about your family loan gone bad. Money can ruin all kinds of relationships – from friends, to family members to marriages. When lending money goes bad, someone winds up paying the debt. And unfortunately, …

Wrong Gift Card? You Can Exchange It

Posted on 12/20/2012 by | Money | Comments

Money & SavingsA recent survey by the National Retail Federation found that six out of 10 people want to receive gift cards under the tree this Christmas. Count me among those folks who enjoy the flexibility of giving and receiving gift cards. A gift card allows people to pick out what they like and they can redeem it at their convenience. Who wants to be stuck with something you’re never going to use or something that doesn’t fit? See also: Can I …