Email FacebookTwitterMenu burgerClose thin

Michael Calleia

Michael Calleia writes on a variety of personal finance topics for SmartAsset. He expertise includes home buying, retirement and investing. Michael has a degree from Bryant University.

Posts by Michael Calleia

Target-Date Funds

What Is a Target-Date Fund and How Does It Work?

There’s about $1.8 trillion in client assets invested in target-date funds (TDFs), according to Morningstar. In fact, it’s likely your 401(k) or IRA offers a target-date fund as an investment option. This makes TDFs extremely accessible retirement savings options. The beauty… read more…

How to Pay Off Mortgage Early

How to Pay Off Your Mortgage Early

When you have a mortgage, a hefty portion of each monthly loan payment goes toward interest. You might be tempted to make minimum payments toward your home loan so that you can use the rest of the money in your bank account to cover other costs. But paying off your mortgage early can save you… read more…

Should You Buy a House Without a Realtor?

Should You Buy a House Without a Realtor?

Can you buy a house without a realtor? That’s one of the decisions you’ll have to make when you begin the home-buying process, but you technically can. While going without a realtor could save you a little bit of money, a buyer’s… read more…

The Road from Bankruptcy Back to Home Ownership
Personal Finance

The Road from Bankruptcy Back to Home Ownership

What if you want to buy a home, but you have a bankruptcy on your credit report? You may be worried that you won’t be able to convince a mortgage lender to provide you with a home loan. There’s good news and bad news. First, the bad:… read more…

Home with For Sale sign on lawn

Does Buying a Home Before Your House Sells Make Sense?

Many homeowners wait to search for a new house until their current house sells. But these days, houses can spend months on the market. While putting a contingency offer on a new home is an option, there’s no guarantee your offer will be accepted in the current market. Find out now: How much mortgage can… read more…

Closed bank branch
Checking Account

What to Do When Your Bank Branch Closes

Is your bank closing your local branch? Don’t be surprised at what is now becoming a common occurrence. Presumably, the economy is a factor in driving banks to shutter branches to save some money. This leaves you with a big question: If your bank closes your local branch, what do you do – do you find a new bank to keep your… read more…

Couple with bill, credit cards and phone
Credit Cards

Is Debt Consolidation a Good Idea?

If you’re struggling with credit card debt, you’re far from alone. According to the latest statistics from financial website NerdWallet, in 2015, an estimated 46.7% of U.S. households carried a balance on their credit cards, averaging a hefty $15,863. Find out now: What card is best for me? American household debt is actually down about $2,200 from the same quarter… read more…

Having Financial Trouble? Mortgage Loan Modification vs. the Short Sale

Having Financial Trouble? Mortgage Loan Modification vs. the Short Sale

Are you struggling to pay your mortgage bills each month? Maybe you’ve lost a job and your income has plummeted. Or maybe you’re going through a costly divorce, or receiving treatment for an injury or illness. There are many reasons… read more…

Woman planning her finances
Personal Finance

Should You Pay Off Your Student Loans Early?

Many students take out a loan to help pay college expenses — often, even more than one. For graduates who secure jobs with healthy salaries, paying those loans off early becomes a distinct possibility. If you are fortunate enough to be in this situation, you may wonder if paying off your student loans is a smart financial move, or… read more…

What Is a Good Credit Score
Credit Score

What Is a Good Credit Score?

Your three-digit credit score is sometimes all that stands between you and a house,  the best insurance rates, your own business or even your next job. Unfortunately, thanks to the recent financial crisis, “good credit” isn’t what it used to be. Banks and other institutions have been tightening their standards and now require higher-than-ever credit scores.… read more…

Couple shakes hands with a mortgage broker after negotiating lower closing fees

Buying a House? How to Trim Your Closing Costs

It might seem like your bank account will have a hole in it by the time you’re done buying a house. After all, you’re paying hundreds of thousands of dollars for your new home, and you’ll be paying hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of interest over the life of your 30-year or 15-year fixed-rate mortgage loan.… read more…

House drawn in sand, swept away by tide
Personal Finance

How to Save Money on Your Homeowners Insurance

You found your dream home. You even made an offer that the seller has accepted. Before you close your home loan, you must take one more step: You need to purchase homeowners insurance. Find out now: Who pays for closing costs? Mortgage… read more…

Driver in a white car showing the car key
Personal Finance

Fine Print You Should Pay Attention to When Leasing a Car

Leasing a car can be a financially smart decision in certain circumstances. But all leases are not created equal, and the lease details found in the fine print of the contract are often the difference between a good deal and… read more…