27 Contributions 83 People Helped Top Contributor

Member Since: October 2014

About Me: Retired Army Officer (~28 years) who also finished a Spartan TRIFECTA in 2016.

Most Helpful Contribution

Credit Karma score compared to FICO score. If my CK score is 730 what would my FICO score be?

Oct 06, 2017
Aloha, VANTAGE Scores are a good PROXY
Helpful to 38 out of 43 people

Aloha Folks,

VANTAGE Scores are helpful tools, but you have to 'take them with a grain of salt'. YES, it's not the same score as your FICO score, but it's close enough to be helpful for the majority of folks out there looking to keep score with their credit score. I see some folks here complain, and other folks here praise this helpful tool. The bottom-line truth is, if your VANTAGE score is going down over time, your FICO score will be hurting too, but if your VANTAGE score is going up over time, you can believe that your FICO score is too. That's what the Vantage score is good for, as a PROXY to your real scores to help you keep tabs on how you're doing. If you're that concerned about accuracy, then it might be worth it to sign up for EXPERIAN's credit monitoring services to see what your actual FICO scores look like.

As for me, I find that my VANTAGE score and my FICO score are very close most times, and not that far apart. So for me at least, getting a FREE VANTAGE score is a good deal.

Take care and stay awesome folks.

Activity (27 Total Contributions)

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should I stop 401K deposit and payoff credit cards

Jan 15, 2019
Aloha lmkjn, that is a great question

Aloha lmkjn, that is a great question by the way! I want to expand a little on jakewill05's answer. If you have a lot of credit card debt (and I mean a LOT), and you are not comfortable with the amount of debt that you carry from month to month, then it comes down to what the interest rates you are paying on said credit cards actually are.

If your interest rates are great as in single digits to low teens, than continue to put away in your 401k and continue to pay down your cc bills. You can go to the library and borrow a copy of Dave Ramsey's books which will give you some great debt killing strategies called a DEBT SNOWBALL. Use it to pay down your cc bills.

If your interest rates are terrible, as above 15%, than you should look into cutting down your 401k payments to add more money to your debt snowball to pay off your debts even faster.

Once you get your debts going down and your highly motivated , your path forward and way ahead will become clear.

Good luck and best wishes lmkjn!

Very Respectfully,

Spartan Hiker

I receive VA disability compensation. Is it reportable or taxable?

Apr 10, 2018

Aloha jwsister,

     Thanks jwsister for your answer to Arglen1's question. Good to know since I'm in the military to. :)

Very Respectfully,


at 47 years old how much money should i have saved

Mar 30, 2018
Aloha bornbless0831, a great question.

Aloha bornbless0831, that is a great question. I will take a slightly different angle that Jwsister by saying that you should have at least a $1,000 Emergency Fund and preferably a 5-6 month Emergency Fund which could sustain you in case of emergency. Think of it as a kind of self-insurance. If you're in debt, especially credit card  or student loan debt, you should be doing everything in your power to pay off your debts minus the mortgage. If you're past that way point, then you should be saving 10-15% of what you make each year in a retirement fund like a Roth 401k or a ROTH IRA. There are many great FREE books you can borrow at your local library or cheap used books you can buy off Amazon that cover this in depth.

Take care and good luck bornbless0831.

Very Respectfully,


Finding a list pension?

Mar 27, 2018
Aloha Beneficial2, ???

Aloha Beneficial2, that question is a bit vague and cryptic. Please repost here if you can articulate it with a little more info to go on. Take care and good luck.

Very Respectfully,


im self employed .what can i do for retirement.iam 51 years old .

Feb 26, 2018
Aloha me3ur1, I agree with faidros

Aloha me3ur1, I agree with faidros 100%. I'll second his good opinion here. You should have Social Security, and you you can go to the Social Security website to order an estimate of your retirement income from them. It's a very helpful piece of information that you should be tracking carefully. On top of that, you should be putting away as much as you can into a ROTH or traditional IRA. At your age, you can also put away a little more called a CATCH UP CONTRIBUTION. Look that up for this year and that's what you can put away starting right now. Great question me3ur1.

Good luck and God Bless.



How to get started at 20?

Feb 22, 2018
Aloha DeniseDY, that is a great question

Aloha DeniseDY,

That is a great question you asked. I'm going to take on a different tack from EddyTX, but to be clear I liked his response and it's some good advice too. Do you have any other debt that your carrying? You should consider building a $1,000 emergency fund first, then once your self-insured against life's little emergencies, and who doesn't have unexpected emergencies? You can move on to step two which is to pay off any outstanding debt you have. Once your done with that you can save a more robust emergency fund, and save for a home and retirement. Debt is one of the most harmful things people can have in life, and as some people like to say, the borrower is slave to the lender. I can speak from experience, without debt, the air around you is fresher, the grass looks greener, and you stand a little taller. I'm just saying it's a huge pyschological boost to not owe any money to anyone. There are always many great books you can read up on the subject. I'm a huge fan of the public library system. Please check with them and ask them some recommendations for a good personal finance book.

Take care and God Bless DeniseDY.



What does the credit report have for my employers?

Feb 07, 2018
Aloha debbie62thebest, GREAT question

Aloha debbie62thebest, GREAT question! I've routinely checked all 3 of my reports, but I've only ever seen it recorded in just one. For my case, it was my Experian report. This is information that I never supplied to them, so I've always wondered how they determine that info. It is very possible and quite likely that if your employer pulls a copy of your credit report as a condition of your employment, the credit bureaus may somehow grab that requestor's info and put that down in your file. I do believe that was the case for me. My other 2 reports have no info in that block. I hope that was helpful debbie62thebest.

Take care and God Bless.



We need a new roof and I would like to pay off a credit card and a loan is this a good idea.

Jan 19, 2018
Aloha Vincyn45, this is why insurance is

Aloha Vincyn45, this is why homeowner insurance is so important. Like mindjazz said, if you have a policy that cover's the roof, that may be your salvation. They can fix the roof, and you can save your hard earned money for paying down your debts or for an emergency fund. An obvious question I didn't hear asked or seen answered was if you own this home or are renting it from someone else. If you own it, it's probably your biggest asset, and a leaky roof will bring financial ruin to your biggest asset in this case. If you rent, then get your land lord on the case asap. Mold can be toxic, and your health is priceless my friend.

Good luck and God Bless Vincyn45.



How do I pay off det

Jan 18, 2018
Aloha Bethany8960, google Dave Ramsey...

Aloha Bethany8960, google Dave Ramsey's Debt Snowball. You'll find tons of information on his website and in his official Youtube videos on his channel that cover this topic. You can also head on over to your local library to borrow a free copy of any of his NYT Bestseller Get-out-of-Debt books. They are all great and cover this topic in depth and then some. If you're really on fire, then go take his Financial Peace seminar at your local church. By that time, I'm sure you'll have made a plan and destroyed your debt(s). Take care and God Bless Bethany8960.



Where can I get a job today?

Jan 17, 2018
Aloha Skipper 88, about your question

Aloha Skipper 88, about your question. It may have been a typo or maybe you didn't have the chance to put down a few more words, so I'll go by your first question. I'm a HUGE fan of free things and FREE help. If you're in school, that may be the ticket to getting started down the road to something. If you're in High School or College, go immediately seek out your Administration office and go see a counselor, any counselor. It's normal to have someone there who can help you. That's what they get paid for, and they want to help you. I'd start there and they can help you take stock of what you're good at, and perhaps point you in the direction of some resources that can help you. My high school counselor helped me get my workers permit at age 16 here in Hawaii. It allowed me to go work part time after school and on the weekends to help me get a foothold in the adult world. A very big step for someone like me. If you're in college or community college, you have even more options. Schools routinely hire students to use around the campus to assist and support the campus, the faculty, and the students. As soon as I could, I traded up to a student computer programmer part time job which paid much better than working outside making minimum wage. That helped me on my current track and I'm still working in that field over 25 years later now. If that's not an option, try your local library. The resources are free for the taking, and librarians are some of the most resourceful and helpful people there are.

Good luck and God Bless Skipper 88.



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