Smart Buying


The Best of Everything, 2013

Best Money-Management Resources

Best a la Carte Financial Planning

Choose from more than 300 certified financial planners at Garrett Planning Network to get help on an as-needed (or ongoing) basis. The advisers charge hourly rates of $150 to $240.

Best Credit Site

Credit.com gives you a free snapshot of your credit, from scores to how you’re doing in different areas, updated monthly.

Best Credit Protection Service

The ITAC Sentinel Plus plan ($13 a month) monitors your files with the major credit bureaus and notifies you of significant changes. You get a quarterly report, and the service helps with damage control if you become a victim of identity theft.

Best Savings Coach

With Virtual Piggy, kids learn about money while you keep tabs on what they’re doing. They log in to accounts you set up to manage the funds that you allot with limits you set.

Best Student-Loan Monitor

Link your federal and private student-loan accounts with the Tuition.io tool to see your total estimated monthly payment, the percentage of your loans paid and your total balance.

Best Car Insurance

With Progressive Snapshot, you agree to put a tracking device in your car. But if you’re a good driver, you won’t get penalized for other drivers’ bad habits.

Best New-Car Research Site

The all-new Price Advisor at KBB.com shows you what you should pay based on recent transactions in your area. Plus, you can get five-year ownership costs. Coming soon: a Price Advisor for used cars.

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