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Elizabeth Smith

Credit Card, Savings and Retirement Expert

Liz Smith is a graduate of New York University and has been passionate about helping people make better financial decisions since her college days. Liz has been writing for SmartAsset for more than four years. Her areas of expertise include retirement, credit cards and savings. She also focuses on all money issues for millennials. Liz's articles have been featured across the web, including on AOL Finance, Business Insider and WNBC. The biggest personal finance mistake she sees people making: not contributing to retirement early in their careers.

Posts by Elizabeth Smith:

by Elizabeth Smith Aug 15, 2018

Purchasing your first home can be intimidating. In Maryland, where there’s no county with an average list price under $100,000, it can be expensive too. Going through the homebuying process, you will likely encounter many situations and price tags that you never have before as you try to secure a mortgage. Luckily, both federal and Maryland state governments offer programs to help first-time home buyers navigate and afford this major purchase. No matter what your financial situation, these programs are worth looking into. Since it can be challenging to decide which mortgage is right for you, check out our detailed breakdowns and consider enlisting the help of a financial advisor. Read more

by Elizabeth Smith Aug 08, 2018

Between breathtaking natural beauty, a burgeoning craft beer scene and a plethora of job opportunities, there are plenty of reasons to move to Colorado. Unfortunately, home prices in the Centennial State have grown exponentially since Colorado rebounded from the 2008 recession. Prices don’t show signs of slowing down but that doesn’t mean first-time home buyers should steer clear of securing a mortgage. The federal and Colorado state governments have created loan and mortgage programs to help make the process a bit easier – and more affordable. Read more

by Elizabeth Smith Jul 23, 2018

Online banks offer some of the best interest rates in the industry. They also tend to raise a few eyebrows. In most cases, they’re just like any other bank only without physical branch locations. Entirely online, Ally Bank fits this description, with competitive rates and around-the-clock support. Still, many wonder: Is Ally Bank safe? Read on to learn how Ally Bank works, what makes it a safe place to store your cash and how to decide if you should make the switch. Read more

by Elizabeth Smith Aug 07, 2018

There’s a lot you have to plan and save for when thinking about your future. Saving for retirement should be at the top of your list. But if you’re planning on buying a home or having a family at… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith Jun 18, 2018

A checking account provides a great tool for money management, keeping your money both safe and easily accessible. However, many banks and credit unions charge a fee to own a checking account. These… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith Jun 18, 2018

When you’re getting started with investing, it’s important to research the options available to you. One such option, known as socially responsible investing (SRI), enables you to grow your money… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith Jun 08, 2018

Since pensions have become less common, many Americans now rely on employer-sponsored, defined contribution plans like 401(k)s or 403(b)s to cover their retirement needs. In fact, a recent study from… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith Jun 08, 2018

Everyone has to plan for retirement, but most retirement conversations revolve around 401(k) plans. While ideal for retirement savings, you can only have a 401(k) plan as an employee of a private… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith Jun 08, 2018

Like many aspects of personal finance, estate planning can be daunting. You’ll encounter complicated terms, intimidating procedures and it’s all about your inevitable demise. Of course, everyone… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith May 29, 2018

About one in five people in the United States collects Social Security benefits each month, according to the National Academy of Social Insurance. Though Social Security benefits provide some income… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith Aug 02, 2018

If you’ve given or received a large gift in the last year, you may need to pay tax on it if it’s over a certain limit. At the same time, you may not have to pay tax, depending on how much you have… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith May 23, 2018

As you get older, there are two major things that you should consider. One is retirement. Having the necessary retirement savings and a financial plan will allow you to live the kind of life you want… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith May 08, 2018

When it comes to accessing your various bank accounts, ATMs offer a big convenience. This is especially true when you bank with an institution that offers thousands of ATMs all over the world.… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith Aug 02, 2018

Even if you understand every tax law and investment strategy out there, it’s always helpful to get support from an expert. Luckily, there are plenty of financial professionals eager to offer their… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith Apr 24, 2018

The Survey of Consumer Finances (SCF) found that the median inheritance in the U.S. is $69,000. Yet an HSBC survey found that Americans in retirement expect to leave nearly $177,000 to their heirs.… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith May 15, 2018

Financial goals are like New Year’s resolutions: easier said than done. Building a financial plan can help bridge the gap between what you want to accomplish and what becomes a reality. A financial… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith May 15, 2018

Managing your finances doesn’t have to be a solo mission. Financial advisors provide expert advice and recommendations on everything from budgets to investments. In fact, industry experts say that… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith May 15, 2018

The U.S. Census Bureau states that the average American retires at age 63. Yet the Social Security Administration defines full retirement age as between 65 and 67, depending on your year of birth.… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith Mar 23, 2018

Traveling abroad can be expensive. Besides renewing your passport, booking your flight and arranging accommodations, you have to pay for transportation, food and all those incredible experiences you… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith Jul 09, 2018

Saving for retirement is important for people of all ages. Contributing to an employer-sponsored plan, like a 401(k) is one great way to save. It won’t always be enough though. Some employers don’t… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith Mar 16, 2018

Many of us have experienced that heart-sinking moment when you get to the ATM or cash register only to discover you don’t have your debit card. Perhaps you dropped it in the parking lot or someone… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith May 03, 2018

When it comes to financial health, it isn’t just about making more and more money. No matter how much money you’re making, you need to be saving a significant chunk of your funds. This comes in handy… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith May 18, 2018

When you start a new job, there’s a lot of paperwork to fill out, from direct deposit documents and benefits enrollments to various tax forms. But when you’re a contractor or self-employed, income… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith Apr 10, 2018

For most of us, payday doesn’t involve any actual cash. And keeping cash hidden at home isn’t exactly foolproof (think theft, fire, flood). That’s where checking accounts come in. Checking accounts… Read more

by Elizabeth Smith Jun 26, 2018

The interest you earn on a savings account is nice, but the accessibility of your funds in a checking account really can’t be beat. Have you ever thought about getting the best of both worlds?… Read more