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Education Articles

Whether you're simply financially curious or have a specific goal in mind, you've come to the right place. Check out the most recent articles just below or filter by category using the dropdown.

Education Articles


The Cost of Going Solar

Are your winter and summer energy bills going through the roof? Maybe it’s time to upgrade to solar panels. Solar panels have become increasingly popular since a tax credit was instituted in 2019. Solar energy can conceivably save homeowners  up to nearly $100,000  over the life of the system. But are solar panels worth it? That all depends on h...
Owning a Home Knowing Your Payment Options

First-Time Home Buyer? Get to Know Homeowners Insurance

Protect your home (and everything in it) for years to come. Congrats on deciding to buy your first home. It’s an exciting (if perhaps a little intimidating) step. But  your  home with  your  stuff? How cool is that? Like anything you own that carries special meaning (your car, jewelry, musical instruments, etc.), you’ll want to protect your new...
Owning a Home Understanding Insurance

Buying Your First Home: A Realistic Guide

To buy or not to buy? That is the question facing many prospective homeowners in today’s topsy-turvy housing market. Buying a home at any point can feel intimidating. There’s just so much to consider—finding a home that meets your needs, finding the right agent, finding the right mortgage professional, qualifying for a mortgage, signing so many...
Planning Your Future Owning a Home

Demystifying Mortgage Terms, Part II

Now that some of the  common loan-approval terms  are embedded in your brain, it’s time to explore other head-scratchers that come up over the life of a mortgage. The following is a short list of terms describing anything from mortgage insurance to the various types of loans. By the time you wade through this list, you’ll be good and ready to bu...
Planning Your Future Owning a Home

Demystifying Mortgage Terms, Part I

Here’s an understatement: The financial industry is full of confusing terms. The mortgage world, especially, is saturated with head-scratching  words and acronyms . What’s an LTV, for example? You’d be forgiven if your first thought went to some sort of off-road vehicle. If you’re buying a home for the first time, a lot of terms will be thrown a...
Planning Your Future Owning a Home

Fall: The Sleeper Season for Home Buying

The real estate market is typically a frenzy of activity from April to September. The weather is ideal for sellers to put their homes up for sale and buyers to look at them. Families tend to relocate during the summer months as they change jobs while getting their children settled before the upcoming fall school term. That’s what happens in a...
Planning Your Future Owning a Home

Is Your Home as Efficient as It Could Be

Drafty windows. Leaky faucets. Inefficient light bulbs. Energy-sapping appliances and electronics. Just a few causes of decreased energy efficiency and higher utility bills. But by exercising a little due diligence, those problems can be tempered significantly. Making your home more efficient can seem like an overwhelming—not to mention costly—t...
Owning a Home

Tricks to Selling Your Home Quickly

Are you on the fence deciding whether to sell your home? Depending on your station in life, there may not be a better time to sell. For the foreseeable future, sellers will remain in the driver’s seat as housing inventory remains historically low, which in turn is driving up prices. Before diving in, though, make sure your financial home is soun...
Planning Your Future Owning a Home

Is My Insurance Enough When Disaster Strikes?

The Pacific Northwest has its share of natural disasters. Because of their unpredictable nature, they should serve as a good reminder to be prepared. If you feel like you’re not ready for the next big one, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has a detailed guide for improving personal preparedness at  Ready.gov . When natural disaster...
Planning Your Future Owning a Home Understanding Insurance

Hitting the Reset Button in Spring

If you’re like many people, spring cleaning just feels good. It gives us a sense of purpose—even in normal times. Organizing and cleaning gets you moving, makes you feel more productive. You get to open all the windows and blinds to let fresh air and sunshine in, and follow that natural light outside. Decluttering your home, inside and out, also...
Planning Your Future Owning a Home