7 Reasons Why Americans Retire in Thailand


Retirement can be financially difficult for many Americans. The median retirement account balance in the United States is below a level that will sustain a retiree until death. With Social Security benefits on the decline, this provides many Americans with a retirement problem.

If retiring Americans are looking to maximize their retirement, it’s a good strategy to retire to Southeast Asia, in one of many countries that offer a tropical lifestyle for a bargain. One of the most popular retirement destinations in Southeast Asia is Thailand, which offers a low cost of living and a relaxing lifestyle.
1. Low Cost of Living

The cost of living in Thailand is much lower than in the U.S. It’s possible to buy a one-bedroom home in the popular Chiang Mai area for around $50,000. A retiree can rent a similar home in the Chiang Mai area for around $500 per month.

Food, transportation and entertainment also cost comparatively less than they do in the U.S. For roughly $1,500 a month in total living expenses, a retiree can live a comfortable lifestyle in Thailand.
2. Delicious Food

Thai restaurants are some of the most popular international eateries in the

8 Ways To Find Cheap Textbooks


According to U.S. News & World Report, the average college student spends up to $1,200 a year on textbooks. Worse yet, the price of college textbooks has increased 82% over the last decade with no end in sight.

Fortunately, college students who want to lower the cost of obtaining textbooks have some options.

1. Free

Since free is about as cheap as a college textbook can get, start with an online search at Project Gutenberg. Project Gutenberg specializes in scanning out-of-copyright books in the public domain and placing them in its library. The site claims to have more than 49,000 free eBooks, including many in Kindle format. Other free online book resources include Google Books and Manybooks.net.

Bookboon.com is also worth mentioning and includes free textbooks in PDF format, mostly in the fields of accounting, economics, engineering, information technology, marketing and management.

2. E-Textbooks

If you are comfortable reading on your computer or tablet, you may want to look for textbooks in digital form. One of the best sources for college level e-textbooks is Vitalsource CourseSmart, which advertises savings of up to 50% or more off print versions.

Another site, textbooks.com, also has an extensive e-textbook section

How Does Depreciation Reduce My Tax Bill


After each tax season, taxpayers will receive their refunds—or end up in dutch to Uncle Sam. And, although Americans can take advantage of numerous tax deductions, the number of options can be hard to parse, or process. Fortunately, property owners can take advantage of a benefit which grants a reduction in taxes they owe. This benefit (called a “depreciation deduction”) is an easy and legal way to minimize tax liability, and property owners should be prepared to take full advantage.
What is the Depreciation Deduction?

Depreciations are income tax deductions that permit property owners to recover the cost of assets over time. The IRS makes an annual allowance for a property’s deterioration, for wear and tear, and for obsolescence—one that applies to tangible property (buildings, machinery, equipment, and vehicles) as well as intangible property (computer software, patents, and copyrights).

As with all tax rules, there are requirements and limitations. The property must be owned by the taxpayer; the deduction can’t be used on a rented or borrowed assets. Properties that have depreciated must be have been used for business purposes, or for income-producing activities. Lastly, the property must have existed for more than

6 Unique Timeshare Ideas for Rich Retirees

As the leading edge of the Baby-Boom generation moves well into retirement age, more and more empty nesters and retirees are putting additional thought and preparation into their vacation plans. For years, many vacationers with disposable income and wanderlust have chosen to invest in a timeshare, which can offer familiarity year in and year out.

But instead of resting their heads on the pillows of a four- or five-star resort, some are bedding down everywhere from catamarans to tree houses to ancient castles.

According to the American Resort Development Association (ARDA), more than seven million owners currently participate in vacation timeshares at more than 5,000 timeshare resorts in nearly 100 countries. And clearly a number of those millions have grown tired of the standard beach-and-golf destinations and are electing to explore more nontraditional venues. It’s a good time for quirky journeys.

Doing the Homework

Anyone opting for timesharing always needs to decide between purchasing a stake (“deeded ownership”) and leasing rights to the property (“right-to-use vacation interval option”). But when considering an exotic destination such as an African safari, this decision is even more critical. Put another way, do you really want to spend the next ten years returning to that tree house in

ETF Analysis iShares Globl Consumer Discretionary

Issued on Sept. 12, 2006, by BlackRock iShares, the iShares Global Consumer Discretionary ETF (NYSEARCA: RXI) provides exposure to a portfolio of global consumer discretionary stocks. RXI seeks to provide investment results corresponding to the S&P Global 1200 Consumer Discretionary Sector Index, the fund’s underlying index. RXI’s underlying, or benchmark, index includes small-, mid- and large-cap consumer discretionary companies. As of July 31, 2015, RXI has generated an average annualized market price return of 8.8% since its inception, while its benchmark generated returns of 8.76%. This indicates RXI tracks its benchmark index with a low degree of error.

The consumer discretionary sector includes companies that produce nonessential goods and services, such as apparel, media and automobiles. RXI’s benchmark index tracks the performance of companies its index provider, S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC, deems to be consumer discretionary companies and important to the global economy. To track its benchmark, RXI employs a representative sampling indexing approach. RXI may invest in a representative sample of securities included in the underlying index that collectively has a similar investment profile to its benchmark index. Under normal market conditions, RXI invests at least 90% of its total net assets in securities comprising the underlying index,

7 Reasons To Own Life Insurance in an Irrevocable Trust

People buy life insurance for many reasons, and it offers some unique features that are not found in many other financial products. For example, leverage, especially in the early years of a policy, where you pay a small premium to lock in a large death benefit or the ability to time liquidity to an event (the death benefit).


An Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust (ILIT) is created to own and control a term or permanent life insurance policy or policies while the insured is alive, as well as to manage and distribute the proceeds that are paid out upon the insured’s death. An ILIT can own both individual and second to die life insurance policies. Second to die policies insure two lives and pay a death benefit only upon the second death.

An ILIT has several parties — the grantor, trustees and beneficiaries. The grantor typically creates and funds the ILIT. Gifts or transfers made to the ILIT are permanent, and the grantor is giving up control to the trustee. The trustee manages the ILIT, and the beneficiaries receive distributions. (See also: When is it a good idea to use an irrevocable life insurance trust?)

It is important for the grantor to avoid any

3 Tips For Finding a Job in Private Equity

Private equity is an alluring career field. Firms in the industry pay large salaries, and with the incentives and bonuses you can earn on top of your salary, the potential is there to make a lot of money, even in your first year. Moreover, the career carries a lot of prestige in the finance world. One reason private equity is so difficult to break into is these jobs are in such high demand; recent graduates compete with seasoned investment bankers and stockbrokers for precious few job openings in private equity.

The field’s controversial reputation among many politicians and pundits only serves to heighten its allure to money-hungry young people. Particularly during the 2012 presidential election, private equity firms, one of which candidate Mitt Romney served as CEO during the 1980s and 1990s, were painted as corporate raiders, or soulless suits who forced themselves on companies, eliminated jobs and cashed in for themselves. While not every deal turns out to be successful, the goal of private equity is noble. These firms risk millions of their own dollars on troubled companies and use their ownership stakes to try to make them profitable again. The executives who conduct these deals undeniably are compensated

9 Ways to Avoid Business Opportunity Scams

There are many benefits to being self-employed. Two key ones: You can set your hours and you don’t have a boss watching your every move. The problem is figuring out how to make money as an independent operator. If you don’t have your own product to sell, such as your grandmother’s amazing brownies, or a service (you’re a landscape gardener or PR expert), one common way to get into business is to sign up with a company that already has a product line, such as Avon or Mary Kay.

Avon, which sells cosmetics and other women’s products; nutrition-products supplier Herbalife; Mary Kay; fragrance-products company Scentsy; and Stella & Dot, a marketer of jewelry and fashion accessories are all multi-level, or network, marketing companies. These companies rely on independent entrepreneurs, many of them women working part-time from home, to market their products through parties, in-home shows, personal websites and other non-traditional retail settings that emphasize social selling. But what distinguishes multi-level marketing from other forms of so-called direct selling is that those independent salespeople can become distributors, earning income not only from their sales but also from the sales of people they recruit into the company.

Having two ways to obtain income from