how to: invest your money

Saving money and learning about investing is always a smart plan. Even if you’re newly hitched, it’s never too soon to start planning for those golden years. Think about it: Do you imagine yourselves lying on a beach or working behind a desk? If you picked the beach (or travel, or golf, or anything other than the 9-to-5 grind), you’ve come to the right place. We have all kinds of investment advice, including the basics of how to invest wisely and what all those financial terms really mean. Not sure where to begin? Start with our five easy steps to invest your money. We also have investing advice and Q&A on all kinds of financial basics about investing -- learn the difference between a 401(k) and an IRA, how to invest your savings, and your options if you can only invest a small amount. Our basic investing advice will help you get ready. But before you invest your money, you should be sure you’re out of debt: Use our debt calculator to help plan your payments, and follow our simple steps to go from credit card misery to debt free. And if your problem is a lack of cash, we’ve got tips for you, too. Learn the habits of spending-savvy couples, and find easy ways to save more of each month’s paycheck and stick to your budget. Don’t want to go it alone? Check out our local pages to find a financial planner in your area for some in-person investment advice.

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Money Q&A: Switching Banks?


The Nest Q&A

Should I switch banks? What should they be offering?


There's no reason why you shouldn’t shop around and get the best deal possible. There’s no penalty for moving your money from place to place, so the only consideration is time and convenience. When you’re thinking about what branches are closest to you, don’t forget that there are web-based banks that often offer the big discounts as a way of getting new customers.

Compare offers at websites like and go through the various features. The most common offer is free checking, but legally, that only means you won't have a minimum balance or activity requirement. You may be charged for bounced checks and other infractions, so read the fine print and see how free it really is.

You might want to consider a bank that offers an ATM card with airline mile rewards (Fiji, anyone?), a cash back bonus, or a bank that offers a refund for ATM fees you incur when you don’t use the bank’s own machine. Also note their rates on savings accounts and options for CDs and other investments.  

-- The Nest Editors

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