Take 5: A Roundup of Reads From Around the Web

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This week: A new way around the traditional credit score, the meaning of "financial wellness," globe trotting on credit-card rewards and what "President Trump" would do for your wallet.

1. 60 Million People Who Don’t Have a Credit Score Could Be in Luck

[Credit.com] “CreditVision Link is designed to assess the likelihood that a consumer will go 90 days without paying a new, nonmortgage account within 12 months. Through the data it uses to determine that, CreditVision Link gives risk scores to 60 million people who have no credit scores using traditional models, TransUnion says.

It was only a matter of time until the big credit bureaus started using nontraditional information to create traditional credit scores. This new score “looks at data such as property, tax and deed records; checking and debit accounts; payday loans; furniture rental payments; and address changes, among other things.” So one day soon, you may have a credit score even if you’ve never borrowed a dime. Check out the article for more.

2. What Does Financial Wellness Look Like?

[The Dollar Stretcher] “I Googled ‘definition of financial wellness’ and got some interesting responses. One site, TheGreenLivingExpert.com, defines financial wellness as “having a clear understanding of your financial situation.” I know a number of individuals meeting that definition who are as far from financial wellness as South Dakota is from China. Having a clear understanding that ‘Oh, I’m so deep in debt I’ll never be able to get out’ is not exactly financial wellness.”

This article offers no earth shattering advice or insight, but it does get you thinking about what it means to be financially “well,” including the mental and emotional components that are so important to lowering your financial anxiety. It’s an interesting read.

3. This Couple Paid Only $17K for More Than $200K Worth of Travel. Here’s How

[The Penny Hoarder] “Dubash has been to more than 40 countries, and Jablon has been to 32 — though she’s quick to add, ‘It’s not so much about the number of countries; it’s about the depth of experience.’ ”

Last week in this space, I linked to a Penny Hoarder article that described how to get cash back with credit cards. This one goes into detail about how to use credit cards to accumulate enough reward points to travel the world cheap. This is a topic we’ve covered, but this couple gives the details of signing up for credit cards, opening bank accounts and doing just about anything possible to earn airline miles. Same warning as last week’s article: This is only for those who pay off their cards monthly. If you’re carrying a balance, eliminating the interest you’re paying is way more important than earning rewards.

4. 4 Common Reasons People Go to Financial Planners

[Debt.com] “While it is ideal to start your financial planning journey early, most people don’t consider hiring a financial planner until something significant moves them to do so.”

The four situations that get people moving toward financial planners are starting a family, planning for college, dealing with an inheritance and preparing for retirement. But after checking out this article, you may start thinking that getting solid financial advice is always a good idea. Which, I hope, is one reason you’re here!

5. 6 Ways a Donald Trump Presidency Could Impact Your Wallet

[Wise Bread] “But while Trump has plenty to say about a lot of things, it’s his focus on the American economy that holds the most weight. After all, he didn’t become a big-mouthed billionaire by being a dummy. So how will a potential Trump presidency impact your own wallet?”

Since I’ve been slack-jawed in amazement from the minute Trump started leading the polls, I had to click on this one. So, how will Trump affect your finances? According to this author, by allowing the interstate shipment of alcohol, getting rid of Obamacare, changing the income tax tables and imposing trade tariffs, among other things. See the post for more.

Stacy Johnson

It's not the usual blah, blah, blah

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