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Javier Simon

Banking, Retirement and Investing Expert

Javier Simon is a banking, investing and retirement expert for SmartAsset. The personal finance writer's work has been featured in Investopedia, PLANADVISER and iGrad. Javier is a member of the Society of American Business Editors and Writers. He has a degree in journalism from SUNY Plattsburgh. Javier is passionate about helping others beyond their personal finances. He has volunteered and raised funds for charities including Fight Cancer Together, Children's Miracle Network Hospitals and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

Posts by Javier Simon:

by Javier Simon Sep 25, 2018

Amid rising healthcare costs, Americans are taking a closer look at their health insurance and savings options. As you look to sign up for a health plan that best suits your needs, you may be intrigued in particular by the health savings account (HSA). It’s a special type of savings vehicle designed to help you pay for future medical expenses. It also offers unique tax breaks. However, you must be enrolled in a high-deductible health plan (HDHP) to open an HSA. That’s good news for many: an HDHP paired with an HSA makes healthcare very affordable for the right person. So read on to learn all about HSAs, their benefits, risks and who should get one. Read more

by Javier Simon Sep 25, 2018

If you’re shopping around for health insurance, you’re probably getting sick from the alphabet soup of plan names you’re taking in. What is an HSA? What about HDHP? Pondering the HSA vs. PPO decision alone may be giving you a headache. But don’t pay to see a doctor just yet. This article will explain in plain English the difference between a health savings account (HSA) and a preferred provider organization (PPO). We’ll also explore the pros and cons of each to help you make the best healthcare decision for you. Read more

by Javier Simon Sep 05, 2018

The South Dakota state government and the federal government both offer special programs for first-time homebuyers who need loans to purchase a home. Which loans you have access to will depend on your exact needs and circumstances, but there are many types of loans out there. For example, you can find loans that only require a small down payment or low credit score minimums. You can also find demographic-specific loans, such as those for veterans. If you want more personalized help throughout the home buying process, it may be worth talking to a financial advisor. Read more

by Javier Simon Aug 28, 2018

The Empire State and the federal government manage several New York first-time home buyer programs. Some cater to specific groups like veterans, teachers or people with less-than-favorable credit… Read more

by Javier Simon Aug 29, 2018

The state and federal government run several first-time home buyer programs in New Mexico to help make homeownership a reality for all. So don’t feel discouraged if your income isn’t stellar or if… Read more

by Javier Simon Aug 27, 2018

Filled with pristine lakes, rivers and state parks, Wisconsin can be a wonderful place to lay down roots. And a first-time home buyer program in Wisconsin can help you make it a reality. Wisconsin… Read more

by Javier Simon Aug 27, 2018

The state and federal government sponsor various Oklahoma first-time home buyer programs designed to give everyone the chance to lay their roots here. So don’t feel left out because of low income or… Read more

by Javier Simon Aug 24, 2018

The state of Kansas and the federal government sponsor several first-time home buyer programs. Some cater to low-income individuals with less-than-superb credit scores. Others support public service… Read more

by Javier Simon Jul 24, 2018

With tuition increasing at a steady pace and student loan debt reaching record highs, many parents struggle finding ways to lower the price of higher education. But a 529 college savings plan can… Read more

by Javier Simon Aug 09, 2018

After years of investing in your children’s college education, you’re ready to reach into your 529 college savings plan and send your kid off to the best years of his or her life. But while making… Read more

by Javier Simon Jul 09, 2018

You contribute money to 529 college savings plan as a tax-advantaged way to save for your child’s future education. But when your kid is set to matriculate, you can’t use those funds for just any… Read more

by Javier Simon Jul 09, 2018

Amid rising college costs and mounting student debt, parents are looking for more ways to lessen the financial burden of higher education. Luckily, 529 college savings plans can help. These unique… Read more

by Javier Simon Jul 04, 2018

Unlike with 401(k) plans and other retirement savings vehicles, the IRS does not set annual contribution limits for 529 college savings plans. Instead, the states that sponsor individual 529 plans… Read more

by Javier Simon Sep 05, 2018

529 college savings plans offer several tax benefits and the potential to build your child’s college fund over time. Unlike with several investment accounts, the federal government allows your 529… Read more

by Javier Simon Jun 19, 2018

Mortgage preapproval requires extensive documentation of your financial and credit history. Before house hunting, you should seek mortgage preapproval. Most real estate agents expect serious buyers… Read more

by Javier Simon Apr 12, 2018

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) issues loans with low interest rates and zero down payments to thousands of low-income Americans, so they can finance homes in rural and suburban… Read more

by Javier Simon Apr 11, 2018

If mortgage payments are eating away at your income, you may find some relief through refinancing your home loan. When you refinance a mortgage, you basically take out a new loan to pay off the old… Read more

by Javier Simon Jun 25, 2018

First-time homebuyer programs throughout the country help hopeful homeowners even if they are low- to moderate-income individuals. These programs also assist Americans in securing mortgages when they… Read more

by Javier Simon Apr 09, 2018

A subprime mortgage helps people with low credit scores finance their homes. Today’s subprime mortgages function much differently than the ones before the Great Recession, but they still pose certain… Read more