Author Archives: Darren Marchal

How to Protect Your Credit From Unscrupulous Landlords

Lori seems to have had bad luck with landlords. When she left her first apartment, she says she cleaned it thoroughly but her landlord charged her $1,200 for a cleaning fee. They kept her $500 security deposit toward that cost, then charged her another $675, which they turned over to a collection agency. In the second case, she…

Exposing Some Common Homebuying Myths

If you are a first-time homebuyer, friends and family members may be quick to give advice about the home-purchasing process. As a result, there could be several homebuying myths that may have found refuge in the back of your mind. Unfortunately, that friendly advice can help perpetuate some of the most common homebuying myths —…

6 Interview Tips and Tricks for 2014

Is 2014 going to be the year you finally land your dream job? With budgets evaluated and annual goals set, many employers are ready to welcome a crop of new team members to start the year off right. If you want to get a jump on the competition and wow the hiring managers at your…

The Secret Math Behind Early Retirement

Early retirement often seems impossible. It’s difficult enough these days to retire at age 65, so the thought of retiring early is a pipe dream for most people. Yet somehow this dream has become a reality for some diligent savers. In extreme cases, a few people have retired at an age when most of us…

8 Tips to Stay Sane During the Holidays

It’s counter-intuitive: This time of year we should be taking time to enjoy life, but for many entrepreneurs, it’s the busiest season of the year. And that’s not just for those who work in retail. We’re busy with holiday party obligations, buying client gifts, volunteering, sending cards…the list goes on and on. I’m in favor…

Top Business Executives Name Their 10 Must-Have Mobile Apps

Whether you are partial to iOS, Android or even BlackBerry for your mobile computing needs, you’re likely faced with an embarrassment of riches when it comes to apps. To put it in perspective, Apple announced in October that its App Store now boasts 1 million apps. And the average U.S. smartphone user downloads 25 apps and spends two hours daily using…

Extended Warranties for Your Gadgets: Are They Worth the Money?

Holiday shopping season is in full swing, and smartphones, tablets, and other electronic devices once again top many shoppers’ gift lists. Given how expensive many popular gadgets have become, one big question many shoppers are facing is whether or not to tack on an extended warranty to protect themselves should their electronic devices come to…

How to Create a Strong Password

Are your passwords as strong as they can be? For many users, self-created passwords are not nearly as secure as they should be. Trustwave, a Chicago-based information security firm, recently revealed that a massive security breach compromised nearly 2 million websites and social media accounts in more than 100 countries. In the breach, 1.58 million website login…