Mark Henricks has reported on personal finance, investing, retirement, entrepreneurship and other topics for more than 30 years. His freelance byline has appeared on CNBC.com and in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Kiplinger’s Personal Finance and other leading publications. Mark has written books including, “Not Just A Living: The Complete Guide to Creating a Business That Gives You A Life.” His favorite reporting is the kind that helps ordinary people increase their personal wealth and life satisfaction. A graduate of the University of Texas journalism program, he lives in Austin, Texas. In his spare time he enjoys reading, volunteering, performing in an acoustic music duo, whitewater kayaking, wilderness backpacking and competing in triathlons.
A patronage dividend is a refund that a co-operative distributes to its members as a share of the co-op’s profits. Unlike a regular stock dividend, a patronage dividend is not a return on investment. Instead, it represents a rebate on the member’s purchases from the co-op during the previous fiscal year. Cooperatives may be able to deduct patronage dividends from their income to reduce their taxes, and a member of a cooperative normally does not owe income taxes on patronage dividends. To learn more about patronage dividends and other types of dividends or how each could impact your finances, contact a financial advisor. Read more
A Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) is a unique nine-digit number the Internal Revenue Service uses to identify individual taxpayers. A TIN can come in different varieties, including Social Security Number (SSN), Employer Identification Number (EIN), Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) and Preparer Taxpayer Identification Number (PTIN). TINs are required any time taxpayers file tax returns and may also serve other purposes, including identifying people applying for jobs, loans and credit. Filing, paying and managing taxes is a key part of a solid financial plan. For help with your taxes or any other financial considerations, consider working with a financial advisor. Read more
Force-placed insurance is a policy that a lender places on a home or other property securing a loan in order to protect the lender’s interests. The lender selects the policy and coverage details but the borrower has to pay the premium. Force-placed insurance generally costs much more than a policy obtained on the open market, and may not protect the borrower as well or at all. If a borrower does not pay the force-placed insurance premium, the lender may be able to foreclose on the property. A financial advisor can help you devise a risk management plan, including insurance to protect your assets. Read more
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