eFinPLAN Blog

Here you'll find no-nonsense advice to help you understand and manage every one of your pennies - from how to budget yourself out of debt to tips for selecting the right kind of insurance. We write every word ourselves so you'll know that the information you read here is accurate and practical!

Low Cost Smartphone Alternatives

Categories: Spend

Good article in the Wall Street Journal about some good alternatives to the expensive full featured smartphones.  Those on an extremely tight budget may want to avoid these all together, and stick with a regular phone to save themselves high monthly data usage bills, unless they really need one for business. The monthly savings could… Read More »

9 Common Overlooked Tax Areas

 The Ernst and Young Tax Guide for 2012 listed 50 of the most easily overlooked deductions. You may want to purchase this large book or look at what is listed on their website.  Also see IRS.gov for a list of highlights and Whats Hot. My list will touch on a few of them that I… Read More »

Cooking on a Budget

I like to cook, and my wife says I’m pretty good at it. I have to admit I have watched a few cooking shows like Paula Deen, Rachael Ray, and Steven Raichlen’s Barbeque U. These shows provide good ideas for putting dishes together, use of ingredients and spices. However I seldom use the recipes, either because… Read More »

Indiana and the Right to Work Laws

The Indiana legislature is battling over putting the Right to Work referendum on the ballot. Right-to-work laws exist ins 22 states, which prohibit agreements between labor unions and employers that make membership, and union dues a condition of employment. What this means to worker’s personal finances in the short run is having to pay mandatory… Read More »

8 General Tax & Accounting Tips

Categories: Taxes

A very important part of personal financial planning is tax planning. As you prepare for tax season, here some general things to consider:  Be aware of the different types of taxes: Many people are not aware of the different types of tax systems that we have. The following are the most common systems that may affect you…. Read More »

Is Your Pension Secure?

Categories: Plan, Retire

Pensions are a little rare today, so rare most people don’t really know how they work.  Pensions also known as Defined Benefit retirement plans, pay someone a percentage of their income when they retire, based upon age, years of service, wage history and the design of the plan.  Millions of people still have them, typical… Read More »

11 Ways to Receive Income

A few days ago I was talking to a friend who was out of work, and considering several great opportunities. This reminded me that there are really many ways to earn an income today, and many financial experts believe in the years to come more people will have several income streams at the same time…. Read More »

Estate Planning for Blended Families

A marriage counselor friend of mine recently said that only 25% of households in some areas are made up of single people and traditional nuclear families of once married couples with their own children. The other 75% of households make up the rest of unmarried couples or remarried couples following separation, divorce or death, with children… Read More »

Estate Planning Documents Most People Need

Categories: Legacy

The following are the most common and basic estate planning documents. If you don’t have them, plan now to get them. If you do have them but it has been several years since they were updated, update them now. If you don’t have properly drawn-up documents, your family members will have great difficulty in planning… Read More »

Year End Investment Results 2011 & Expectations for 2012

Categories: Invest

You may be wondering how your investments performed in 2011, and what that prognosticators are saying for 2012, here are some very good resources: “Mutual-fund categories and their benchmarks ranked by one-year total return. Yardsticks are based on categories compiled by The Wall Street Journal, based on Lipper, Inc. fund investment objectives. Performance for Yardsticks… Read More »