3 Things You Need to Ask Yourself Before Filing your Taxes

Tax Season is Here

Tax Season is here again, which for a lot of us can be really overwhelming. Before you decide to tackle your taxes alone, ask yourself these 3 questions:

  1. How complicated are my finances
  2. Do I have the time
  3. How comfortable are you with financial matters

Need a little help to bridge the gap before getting your tax refund? CashMax is here with 38 convenient locations in Texas.

CashMax Texas offers 3 easy ways to help during tax season:

  1. Get pre-approved for as much as $5,000 over the phone.
  2. CashMax offers 2 loan options: Cash Advance and Title Loans. So if you need fast cash with instant approval today, we have you covered.
  3. CashMax has 38 convenient locations in Texas to serve you:
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700 Hits

What are the Benefits of Online Banking?

online payment

Banking online offers many helpful benefits, making it easier than ever to keep track of your money and stay in control of your financial future. Using your computer or phone, you can instantly view your current balance and recent transactions, pay bills or send money, and transfer funds between accounts. Rather than waiting in line at a bank, you can take care of business all on your own with a few simple clicks.

Pay Bills

One of the biggest perks to choosing an online bank is quick, easy access to your accounts, allowing you to stay on top of your monthly budget and bills. Paying bills online is a great way to ensure your accounts are up to date, with trackable payment confirmation numbers avoiding any worries of your check or cash getting lost in the mail. Save a stamp and a trip to the post office by instantly sending money to those you owe.

Keep Tabs on Transactions

Did your last paycheck go through? What is your current checking balance? With online banking, you can know exactly how much money you have in the bank at all times, without having to visit a physical location. Access your account 24/7 to double check your spending power, and make sure there are not any suspicious transactions. If you ever see a payment you did not authorize, you can call your provider to address the issue right away.

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3864 Hits

What are Medical Loans?

patient having consultation with a doctor

Medical loans are personal loans for medical expenses. When procedures go outside the limits of insurance coverage, or if necessary treatments aren’t covered by insurance at all, medical loans can help bridge the gap during trying times. Learn what to expect and which options make sense for your medical situation.

Most Common Medical Loans

There are many common medical procedures that insurance companies do not cover. Orthodontia, reconstructive surgery, hair restoration, and bariatric procedures are typically categorized as “cosmetic” treatments, and therefore are often rejected by health insurance. Similarly, fees that address infertility, in vitro fertilization, or adoption are usually outside the scope of most plans.

Types of Medical Loans

If medical expenses are proving to be outside your current budget, here are a few different medical loan options for you to pursue:

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3771 Hits

Reasons to Use a Credit Card

Credit Card

Some folks talk about credit cards like they’re dangerous and lead to excessive debt, but there are plenty of great reasons to use a credit card as a form of payment. Credit cards offer several perks such as airline miles, sign on bonuses, and earnable rewards, all while building your credit history.

Building Credit

Using a credit card for your daily purchases can be an excellent way to build up your credit history. When you pay your credit card bills on time, you prove to lenders that you are reliable. Staying within your credit limit and paying off statements completely each month will boost your credit score and can help you receive future car loans, mortgages, and more.

Rewards, Points, and Bonuses

Many credit cards offer buyers a variety of enticing rewards and sign-on bonuses. Most operate on a point-based earning system, with dollars spent earning a certain amount of points. You can earn airline miles, retail gift cards, hotel stays, and more, depending on which card you choose.

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3508 Hits

How to Keep Your Banking Information Safe Online

Credit Card Fraud

Cyber security is an issue that affects us all, which is why it is crucial to understand how to keep your banking information safe online. By taking a few simple precautions such as using secure Wi-Fi and creating difficult passwords, you can rest assured your private information and account numbers will stay protected.

Browse on Secure Networks

While most of us have grown accustomed to using apps and browsing online from any location, it’s important to save banking tasks for when you’re on secure networks. Avoid checking your account or sending money while using a public computer or free Wi-Fi, especially networks that do not require a password login. These networks are more susceptible to attack, so only log in to your bank while at home or on a password-protected internet provider.

When banking, be sure the website has a “https” at the start (rather than “http”); the “s” stands for secure, and safeguards you against dangerous situations.

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2805 Hits

Three Ways to Get a Free Credit Score

Checking Credit Score

Staying up to date with your credit score helps you know where you stand in terms of your creditworthiness, so when you apply for a loan or credit card, you have an educated idea of whether you'll be approved. Additionally, the United States Federal Trade Commission suggests checking your credit report yearly to make sure your information is accurate. Learn more about the three ways to get a free credit score below!

Get a Free Annual Credit Report

The Fair Credit Report Act entitles you to at least one credit report every year from all of the three main credit bureaus: TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax. To check your credit score, as well as your full credit report, you can order yours online from annualcreditreport.com — which is the only website authorized to provide a free report. You can order online or by phone. To keep track of your creditworthiness, it's a smart idea to order once every four months from each of the three bureaus — one in January from TransUnion, one in May from Equifax, and one in September from Experian.

Use Your Credit Card Account to Get Your Score

Some credit card companies offer a free monthly credit score or a credit report copy, such as Discover, Bank of America, American Express, and more. If you check your credit card account online, you may be able to keep track of your score right from the dashboard. While these free monthly credit scores aren't FICO scores, they can help you gauge your credit status and keep an eye out for strange increases or decreases.

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2465 Hits

Can I Pay My Credit Card with Another Credit Card?

Credit Cards

Usually, no — at least not directly. Most credit card companies won't allow you to punch in the numbers for another credit card to pay your bill. The main reason why it's typically not an option is that the processing fees are too high for the company. However, if the due date on your credit card bill is fast-approaching and you don't have the cash, you can find another way to use a second credit card or try another approach.

Cash Advances

If you have a second credit card, you can take a cash advance against it to pay off the first credit card, or at least pay the monthly bill. You can then deposit the cash into your bank account and make your payment. However, there is a drawback to cash advances: the fees. It's not uncommon for a fee to be 5 percent or $10 — whichever is higher. There are also limits to how much you can get. Usually, the limit is lower than a credit limit, so if you're in considerable debt, a cash advance likely won't cover it.

Debt Consolidation

Do you have several lines of credit that you're struggling to keep current every month? If so, consider credit card debt consolidation. For example, taking out a personal loan can help you manage your debts and reduce your monthly payments to one credit bill — that is, your loan repayment. This is a great option, as long as you make your payments on time and can snag a loan with reasonable rates and terms.

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1372 Hits

How Much Cash Should I Keep in the Bank?

Credit Cards

If you're like most people, you've probably asked yourself, "How much cash should I keep in the bank?" There's no right or wrong answer, but there are general guidelines you can follow to maximize your savings and avoid wasting money. Everyone has a different savings formula. However, overcomplicating how you look at your own money can cause you to stress over every dollar spent. Read on to learn more about how you can structure your checking and savings accounts for success.

What to Keep in Your Checking Account

If possible, store at least one month's take-home pay in your checking account. This gives you a buffer without putting you at risk for living paycheck-to-paycheck or hoarding all of your extra money — only to overspend later. Saving the equivalent of your monthly take-home gives you peace of mind for 30 days should you paycheck get lost in the mail or another extenuating circumstance arises. Additionally, it reduces the worry of overdrawing your account or feeling unprepared to deal with emergency situations.

While it may seem like keeping a large cushion of funds is smarter, the truth is: mixing your checking and savings money can trick you into thinking you have more money available. If you keep a smaller but adequate amount in your checking, you'll be less likely to splurge on that new TV or designer jacket because the money's sitting in your account.

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1175 Hits

Credit vs. Debit Cards

Credit Cards

What's the difference between credit cards and debit cards? Chances are you have at least one of the two in your wallet. Which is better? Both have their benefits and potential drawbacks, depending on your financial situation, spending habits, and credit history. Learn the basics of credit vs. debit cards below.

What You Need to Know About Credit Cards

Institutions, such as banks, issue credit cards to cardholders after they've applied for and been approved for a line of credit. Cardholders agree to repay the money borrowed with interest. There are four types of credit cards:

  • Standard Card — provides a line of credit.
  • Rewards Card — offers perks like travel points and cash back.
  • Secured Card — can't be used without a cash deposit as collateral.
  • Charge Card — doesn't come with a spending limit, but typically doesn't allow unpaid balances to carry over.

Credit card usage also impacts your credit report and credit score. Your credit report provides lenders with a window into your financial history, while your credit score summarizes your creditworthiness. Using credit cards responsibly can significantly raise your credit score and improve your chances of getting approved for personal loans, low auto financing rates, and more. On the other hand, failing to repay your credit card bills can send your credit score into a downward spiral. None of this is true for a debit card.

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1424 Hits

Diversifying Investments

Business Finance Saving

If you've heard the phrase "Don't put all your eggs in one basket," then you already know one of the top pieces of advice from the leading financial experts! This simple phrase is the heart and soul behind the concept of diversifying investments. Rather than placing all of your money in one place, you divide your assets among a variety of investments to maximize gain and minimize losses. But how does your average Joe learn how to diversify investments in the best way possible? Let's dive into exactly what is a diversified investment and how you can take advantage of this concept in your personal portfolio:

Different Types of Investments

What is a diversified investment? It means spreading your savings across different types of investments - the key words being "different types." Let's say you have a portfolio of stocks and you want to diversify. Should you load up on new stocks? The smarter option would be to add new types of investments like bonds or real estate. This allows you to take advantage of the different pros and cons of investments across the board. Here are a few of your options:

  • Bonds
  • International investments
  • Real estate
  • Stocks
  • Cash
  • And more

Doing the Math

Just how much of your money should you put into each of these investments? It's important to think practically. We like to use a tiered approach with financial planning. Your first tier of savings is your rainy day fund. This pool of money is used as a safeguard against any emergencies you encounter, like medical issues or auto troubles. Your second tier is your stocks and bonds.

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1423 Hits

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