Karin Price Mueller is the founder of NJMoneyHelp.com, a personal finance web site that offers smart and objective advice on everything money. She also writes the Bamboozled consumer affairs column for The Star-Ledger, and a monthly money column for Inside Jersey magazine, and she's been the recipient of many national and local journalism awards. Mueller lives in Monmouth County with her husband — Star-Ledger reporter Mark Mueller — and their three kids and two English Mastiffs. Whatever they don't eat goes into her retirement savings accounts.
Karin Price Mueller/NJMoneyHelp.com
Applying for ‘early college decisions’ and financial aid questions
Q. My son is applying early decision to one school. But I know we won’t get the financial aid package until later. How can he say yes — if he’s accepted — if we don’t know what it’s going to cost?
Avoiding taxes on retirement distributions
Q. I don’t need my Required Minimum Distributions and I don’t want to pay taxes on them, but I don’t really want to give them to charity. Are there other options?
Tax changes for NJ retirees
Q. Can you explain about before vs. after-tax savings for retirees? For example, I plan to retire in 2018 and will have a pension of about $40,000, filing taxes as single. I don’t expect additional income. What would I owe in taxes under the new bill that gives help for retirees?
Lowering your taxable income after that big raise
Q. I got a big raise, and I’m afraid it will put me into a higher tax bracket. What can I do to lower my taxable income?
Trump’s presidency and the stock market
Q. What areas of the stock market should be unaffected by the election?
Are annual credit cards fees worth it?
Q. I have a credit card with a $95 annual fee. I’m trying to decide if I should cancel or if it will hurt my credit report. What do you think?
You may want to take a second look at your estate planning
Q. We had our estate planning documents set to have a trust to help us avoid estate taxes in New Jersey. Now that it’s changing, do we have to change our plan again?
Depreciation from a home office
Q. Please explain depreciation, and why would anyone want to do it? It seems you’d get killed in taxes when you eventually sell a home.
Deciding if municipal bonds are right for your investment strategy
Q. How can I decide if I should have municipal bonds? Is there a formula or something?
As markets panic over Trump win, what should you do?
We’re getting a new president. The markets are shaky. In this NJMoneyHelp.com special election report, here’s what you need to know for your portfolio.