8 Urban Myths of Personal Finance

Don't believe everything you hear about your money.

Myth: You don't have to start saving for retirement until age 40.

Truth: The sooner you start saving and investing, the better.

Myth: Only rich people get tax breaks.

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Truth: The tax code offers savings for middle- and working-class taxpayers for starting a family, education, home buying and retirement saving.

Myth: Gold is the best investment you can make.

Truth: A diversified portfolio will shine brighter.

Myth: Social Security won't be around when you retire.

Truth: It will evaporate by 2034 if nothing changes, but incoming money from payroll taxes will still be enough to support about 75% of promised benefits.

Myth: Free trade deals are bad for America.

Truth: Trade and international commerce creates as many (if not more) higher-paying jobs, especially in the services industries, as it destroys.

Myth: Tapping your 401(k) is a great way to borrow money.

Truth: The hit to your nest egg may be greater -- and last longer -- than you think.

Myth: Credit cards are best to be avoided.

Truth: Used smartly, a credit card will help you build a solid credit history and boost your credit score.

Myth: Only rich people need a will.

Truth: Everybody should have a will, even if only to spell out funeral and burial wishes.

Read more about the urban myths of personal finance.

Rebecca Dolan
Contributing Writer, Kiplinger.com
Before joining the Kiplinger team as Online Community Editor in 2013, Rebecca was associate travel editor at the Huffington Post, where she also handled the travel section's social media. She landed at AOL/HuffPost after earning an MS in journalism at Northwestern University's Medill School, with a concentration in health and science journalism. Prior to that, she covered lifestyle at Jacksonville Magazine, in Jacksonville, Fla., preceded by a stint at American Cheerleader magazine. She holds a BA from the College of William and Mary.