NEW CASTLE —
Dear Dave: What do you think about the practice of credit card churning? — Ethan
Dear Ethan: I think it’s a pretty dumb idea. The concept is to run up the balance on one card as high as you can, then flip the balance from card to card in order to get perks like airline miles. But if you want to go through all the trouble and hassle over such a small amount of money, be my guest.
I’ve met thousands of millionaires, and none of them have ever credited their success to credit card churning. Think about it: With all the time you’d spend, and risk you’re taking on a scheme like that, you could actually have made some money.
If you want success, Ethan, you have to mimic what successful people do. This means living on a detailed plan, saving, and investing. — Dave
Dear Dave: Both of our daughters will start college next year. We have $25,000 set aside for each in their custodial accounts, but my financial adviser says we should take the money out because it will keep them from being awarded as much in scholarships and other assistance. What do you think? — John
Dear John: I disagree. It’s like saying you should quit your job to get food stamps. You guys obviously aren’t poor, and any financial adviser who says you need to fake being poor in order to get help is not a person whose advice I want to follow.
When your kids apply for scholarships and assistance, your entire financial picture will be assessed. More funding goes to kids from poor families than rich ones, but that’s only fair. Chances are, you fall somewhere in the upper-middle portion of the scale.
But no, I wouldn’t move the money or try to hide it. It’s just not honest to try and act like you’re poor when you’re not. I don’t believe in that kind of stuff. — Dave
(For more financial advice, please visit daveramsey.com.)
NEW CASTLE —
Mitchel Olszak: Observing the stock market prompts lots of confusion
A casual observer of Wall Street may conclude investors in American stocks are insane. Perhaps that’s because many of them are. Or at least their financial decisions appear to support this contention.
John K. Manna: Party labels shouldn’t matter in local contests
Anything is possible in elections, but often improbable when it comes to school board races in Pennsylvania. In the Nov. 5 election, voters went to the polls in six of the eight school districts in Lawrence County and were faced with little choice.
Dave Ramsey: Where to keep the emergency fund?
“Dave Says” is a weekly column featuring financial advice from nationally syndicated radio host Dave Ramsey. His column is filled with timely, relevant questions and answers taken from actual letters and calls on Ramsey’s radio progam, “The Dave Ramsey Show.”
Mitchel Olszak: Personal skepticism is best defense against scams
The caller said she had been targeted by a telephone scam. She wanted me to put something in the paper to warn others. I asked if she had contacted police about the matter.
John K. Manna: State finally has road, bridge repair plan
Pennsylvania finally has a program in place to fix roads and bridges and provide more money for mass transit. The massive undertaking — pushed by Republican Gov. Tom Corbett — will cost about $2.3 million per year, most of which will be paid by motorists in the form of increases in gas prices at the pump and fees.
Culinary Conversation: Authors share recipes deer to them
If you want the most knowledgeable information about a subject, go to the authority. In this case, the expert on cooking with venison — deer meat — is Ellwood City’s Steve Loder. He and his wife, Gale, are the authors of “Quality Venison Cookbook — Great Recipes from the Kitchen of Steve and Gale Loder.”
John K. Manna: Three former governors give their endorsements
Another election is history, which means another election campaign season is under way. Actually, some Democratic candidates running in next year’s gubernatorial contest couldn’t wait and began campaigning months before this year’s election.
Culinary Conversation: My, oh my, it’s pie!
Making a pie crust can result in one of two things. You’ll either be remembered as the king or queen every time the word pastry is mentioned. Or you won’t. For some, that age-old cliché “easy as pie” is not that simple.
Mitchel Olszak: Autumn becomes the time to report for leaf duty
This time of year, I find myself frequently looking skyward. I’m not pondering the clouds, anticipating snow or scanning for NSA drones. Rather, I’m looking at the trees.
Culinary Conversation: Time to plan Thanksgiving meal
The calendar doesn’t lie. Thanksgiving is less than three weeks away. Then planning begins for all the other holiday meals. I have already made up a list of what we’re making on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. It’s a frenzy of preparation and two days of baking and cooking, but I wouldn’t change any of it for the world.
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