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Amelia Josephson

Mortgage, Home Buying and Credit Card Expert

Amelia Josephson is a writer passionate about covering financial literacy topics. Her areas of expertise include retirement and home buying. Amelia's work has appeared across the web, including on AOL, CBS News and The Simple Dollar. She holds degrees from Columbia and Oxford. Originally from Alaska, Amelia now calls Brooklyn home.

Posts by Amelia Josephson:

by Amelia Josephson Dec 09, 2019

The title of certified financial planner® (CFP) carries a lot of weight. It indicates that the bearer has put the time and work into obtaining CFP certification. Anyone can say they can help you with your finances, but only a select group of financial advisors obtains CFP certification. How does CFP certification work? Let’s take a closer look. Read more

by Amelia Josephson Dec 12, 2019

Looking for a financial advisor can be a tricky task. It’s hard to know what kind of financial advice you need, and how much you should pay for that advice. One important distinction to understand is the difference between financial counselors and financial planners. Let us explain.  Read more

by Amelia Josephson Apr 26, 2018

Many of us have dreamed of moving to California and enjoying what the Golden State has to offer. But not all California destinations are equally desirable. SmartAsset crunched the numbers to find the best places to live in California. Let’s take a closer look. Read more

by Amelia Josephson May 15, 2017

If you read the fine print of credit card offers, you’ll notice that credit card companies say their interest rates are variable. That means they can change in response to changes in the Prime Rate.… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Feb 28, 2018

Transferring money is easier than it used to be, but it can still be a difficult and expensive chore. When you’re transferring money you probably want to maximize security and convenience while… Read more

by Amelia Josephson May 01, 2017

According to a 2016 World Bank report, $56.3 billion in remittances left the U.S. in 2014. What are remittances? Remittances are monies that someone living in a foreign country sends home. Let’s take… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Mar 19, 2021

The state and local tax (SALT) deduction allows taxpayers of high-tax states to deduct local tax payments on their federal tax returns. The tax plan signed by President Trump in 2017, called the Tax… Read more

by Amelia Josephson May 08, 2017

Do you still need to pay for mortgage insurance if you get a VA loan? The short answer is no. There is no monthly mortgage insurance with VA loans. Unlike regular loans, which require mortgage… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Jul 09, 2018

If your debts are getting you down you may be wondering if a debt settlement is the right move. Settling with your creditors can be a life-changing event, freeing you from debt collectors’ calls and… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Apr 21, 2017

If credit card debt has got you down or you’re committed to earning as many credit card points as you can, you may be wondering whether you can pay a credit card with a credit card. The short answer… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Apr 20, 2017

DD Form 214 is your report of separation from the Armed Services. DD Form 214 isn’t just a formal document – it’s a document you’ll need to access a range of services for veterans, services like VA… Read more

by Amelia Josephson May 18, 2018

Looking for an affordable home? If so, you may be wondering whether buying a pre-foreclosure home could help you land a bargain on your home purchase. Browsing real estate listings will show you that… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Aug 30, 2017

Have you ever wanted to make an online purchase but worried that your credit card number could fall into the wrong hands? If so, you might be interested in a virtual credit card. With a virtual… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Jun 25, 2018

Repossessed houses are houses that have fallen into default. If a homeowner can’t keep up with his or her mortgage payments, the bank may repossess the home. This process is also known as foreclosure… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Aug 20, 2018

Your credit limit determines how much you can charge to your credit card before you start racking up interest. In combination with how much you spend, your credit limit also determines your credit… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Oct 02, 2020

A loan officer decides which would-be borrowers are eligible to proceed to loan underwriting. The loans in question could be mortgages, small business loans or personal loans. Loan officers meet with… Read more

by Amelia Josephson May 11, 2017

“No-doc loan” is mortgage-speak for a home loan that requires only limited income documentation from applicants. Normally, applicants for mortgages disclose their income, assets and employment status… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Mar 31, 2017

In a shared appreciation mortgage, the homeowner shares some of the profit earned as the home’s value increases over time. Generally, lenders or organizations offer shared appreciation mortgages in… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Mar 31, 2017

VA loans help servicemembers, veterans and qualified spouses take out government-backed home loans with benefits and support. In general, VA loans have low delinquency rates. In rare cases, however,… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Mar 30, 2017

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) describes itself as “a U.S. government agency that makes sure banks, lenders, and other financial companies treat you fairly.” To help the Bureau do… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Mar 29, 2017

There’s a reason that annuities are appealing financial products. They take the uncertainty out of retirement income by guaranteeing an annual sum. But do the costs outweigh the benefits? Let’s take… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Apr 14, 2017

If you’re thinking of applying for a VA loan, it’s important to understand the VA home appraisal process. Appraisals and inspections are different. Inspections are more detailed investigations into… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Jun 25, 2018

Wondering whether to apply for a conventional loan or an FHA loan? It’s important to understand the difference between the two loan types. The loan type you ultimately choose will depend on the type… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Aug 20, 2018

The last Social Security privatization proposal with legs came in 2005. Former President George W. Bush proposed a system of voluntary investment accounts. These accounts would contain money from… Read more

by Amelia Josephson Aug 20, 2018

Americans’ debt levels tend to peak in middle age, while seniors tend to have lower debt levels. They’ve had more time to pay down mortgage, credit card and student loan debt. For many Americans, a… Read more