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To Lease or Not to Lease?

Once you’ve retired, experts say it makes less sense to lease a car than to buy it outright.

Here are their reasons:

1.) While lease payments may be lower than purchase payments, over the long run, buying costs you less over the long run. That’s because after you pay off your car (typically in 5 years), you can drive payment free for as long as you care to continue owning the vehicle.

2.) You don’t have to worry about mileage. Typically, when we retire, travel is one of the activities that tends to increase. With a leased vehicle, you pay penalties for driving more than 12,000 to 15,000 a tear.

3.) Should your lease vehicle be involved in an accident that totals the vehicle, you may be liable for an “early termination fee.” You may be able to avoid such a fee by purchasing gap insurance, but that insurance also creates an additional expense you don’t have with a purchased vehicle

4.) Typically, your regular insurance may be higher as well as the leasing agency requires you to carry a higher accident liability than you might purchase if you are buying the car. This is because the lease vehicle is still legally the property of the lease company. If it’s involved in an accident, lawyers for the other party usually go after the lease company, figuring they have “deeper pockets” than the driver. To protect themselves, lease companies require you to carry higher liability insurance.

However, if you’re the type that likes driving a fancier car than you may be able to purchase or if you like having a new vehicle every 3 years or so, then leasing might still be the way to go no matter your age!

Staying Ahead of the Con Artists

The name of scam artists trying to con you via your phone or over the internet is increasing. They pose as IRS agents, anti-virus tech support, jury duty managers, bank verifiers and more.

Think you can spot a fraudsters? Most of us think we can, yet more people are getting scammed every day.

AARP has an online quiz that tests your ability to spot a phony. You can take it at aarp.org/fraudwatchnetwork.

Beware: The “Pop-Up Window of Death”

You know the situation. You’re calmly surfing the web on your PC or laptop when all of a sudden a big pop-up window appears and a loud voice comes over your speakers warning you that your computer is dangerously infected with a virus or malware. There is just one problem…

Real anti-virus/anti-malware programs do not operate like this. They do not take over your computer with loud voices or screens you cannot close.

Your computer IS in danger – but from the source of the pop-up.

If you get one of these pop-up warnings, here are some steps to remember:

1.) Do NOT click anywhere on the pop-up window

2.) Do NOT take any action the pop-up window is urging you to take (like call a toll-free number)

3.) If possible, immediately closer your web browser.

4.) If that’s not possible, reboot your computer immediately

5.) If all that fails, get your computer to an authorized repair center as soon as possible.

Why You Should Avoid Online Reviews

Once upon a time, people relied on magazines like Consumer Reports before making big purchase decision. Now, people increasingly rely on online reviews. But most experts give those kind of ratings low ratings!

There are several reasons for this. One is that if people have a bad shopping or shipping experience, they tend to blame the product and not the retailer. Second, many consumers are swayed by brand name recognition and are hardly putting these products through scientific testing - the way the consumer magazines do.Thirdly, some products actually have paid people and/or employees to post favorable reviews online (what? I can't believe everything I read on the internet?).

Those who know say smart shoppers still rely on consumer testing experts and NOT online reviews.

Escaping the Tax Man

Baby Boomers are rightfully concerned about not outliving their financial resources. One of the most vexing is taxes. Here are the states where your tax bite may be less painful:

Alaska & New Hampshire: These states collect no tax on sales, income or Social Security.

Florida, Tennessee, Texas, Nevada, South Dakota, Washington and Wyoming: No taxes on income, Social Security or pensions.

38 States and Washington, D.C.: Do not tax income from Social Security

Many states have other taxes, such as on interest and dividends, sales taxes and high property taxes, so consult your financial advisor before making any final decisions.

On My Little Margie, who did Margie's dad, Vern, work for?

The investment firm of Honeywell & Todd
O'RyanCordes Marketing