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Nina Semczuk

Mortgage, Home Buying, Savings and Retirement Expert

Nina Semczuk is a Certified Educator in Personal Finance® (CEPF®) and a member of the Society of American Business Editors and Writers. She helps makes personal finance accessible as a Writer/Editor and homebuying expert for SmartAsset. Nina started her path toward financial literacy at fourteen after filling out her first W-4 and earning her first paycheck. Since then, she's navigated the world of mortgages, VA loans, Roth IRAs and the tax consequences of changing states or countries at least once a year. Nina specializes in mortgage, savings and retirement education. Nina is a graduate of Boston University and served as an officer in the military for five years. Find her work on The Muse, Business Insider, Fast Company, Forbes and around the web.

Posts by Nina Semczuk:

by Nina Semczuk Dec 29, 2017

In late December, President Trump signed sweeping tax legislation into law. Under the new law, taxpayers can only deduct $10,000 in combined property taxes and other state and local taxes (SALT) from their federal taxes. This change will go into effect in January 2018, meaning it will impact the 2018 taxes that you file in April 2019. The cap on the SALT deduction is a cause for concern for many homeowners in high-tax states. To lessen the impact, some of these homeowners are eager to prepay property taxes for 2018 by December 31 in order to deduct them from their 2017 tax bill. Read more

by Nina Semczuk Dec 21, 2017

Veterans who want to take out a mortgage backed by the Department of Veterans Affairs must prove that they qualify for the home loan program. There are certain requirements to meet as well as paperwork to complete for qualification. If you meet the criteria, you’ll receive a Certificate of Eligibility (COE) that shows a mortgage lender that you’re eligible for a VA loan. In order to receive a COE, you need to submit VA Form 26-1880 through the mail or apply online through the eBenefits portal. Read more

by Nina Semczuk Feb 02, 2018

Some of us like to maximize our tax return. That can mean filing taxes yourself to save on tax preparation fees, or, using an online option to save costs. While online filing is certainly more affordable than many in-person tax services, in many cases, you don’t even have to pay for the basic level. That means you have several excellent options for free online tax software. Read more

by Nina Semczuk Feb 02, 2018

Filing your taxes yourself has never been easier. As long as you have internet access, you can submit your tax return from the comfort of your couch. In fact, according to the IRS, 92% of tax returns… Read more

by Nina Semczuk Oct 30, 2017

The holiday season is a time for celebration. And with most celebrations, you usually find yourself opening your wallet again and again. This can put a strain on your budget and put a damper on… Read more

by Nina Semczuk Jan 09, 2018

Start with giving yourself a pat on the back. Whether you saved $50,000 by diligently setting aside a portion of your paycheck, or you came into money through an inheritance, you now have a tidy sum… Read more

by Nina Semczuk Oct 27, 2017

Reaching retirement age can be exciting, but also nerve-wracking in regards to money matters. One of the first questions you may have, is what happens you start withdrawing from your 401(k)? You’ve… Read more

by Nina Semczuk Jan 09, 2018

Money management is a tricky subject. For many, the topic’s accompanied with a feeling of apprehension. Maybe you’ve put off saving for retirement for a bit too long. Or, perhaps you’re worried about… Read more

by Nina Semczuk Oct 23, 2017

Starting early with college savings is a smart choice. With the price of higher education rising each year, the sooner you start, the better chance you’ll have of helping make a dent in those costs.… Read more

by Nina Semczuk Oct 19, 2017

Inheriting an IRA comes with certain responsibilities. The rules for an inherited IRA depend on the specifics of your situation as well as the deceased’s age and can get a little confusing.… Read more

by Nina Semczuk Oct 23, 2017

Everyone has an opinion on how you should budget. From experts touting the latest app for online money management to bloggers giving personal perspectives on cash-only lifestyles, you won’t find a… Read more

by Nina Semczuk Oct 11, 2017

If you’re in the process of buying a home, you may have heard the term “deed of trust.” Depending on what state you live in, this may have come up more frequently than it would in other places. But… Read more

by Nina Semczuk Jun 28, 2017

Whether you’re buying a house for yourself or as an investment, one factor to consider is the long-term value of the home. Housing market growth is a way to determine if you’ll get a return for your… Read more

by Nina Semczuk Jul 20, 2017

Summer memories wouldn’t be complete for many Americans without tractor pulls, fried dough and live music with friends and family. Each year millions of attendees celebrate the end of summer and the… Read more

by Nina Semczuk Jun 14, 2017

Almost 10 years past America’s most recent financial crisis, you can still hear the term in the news. Whether it’s in regards to recovering from one, or the impending onset of another, it’s a phrase… Read more