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Do you use email to advertise your business? If so, those messages are subject to rules established under the
CAN-SPAM Act. Signed into law by President George W. Bush in 2003, it applies to all commercial email messages that advertise or otherwise promote a commercial product or service.

Should the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) find you in violation of the CAN-SPAM law, your business could face a penalty of up to $16,000 per email sent. However, the FTC isn’t the only one looking at the emails you send. Many email and internet service providers (ISP) use SPAM filters to keep unwanted messages out of their customers’ inboxes. In fact, according to ReturnPath, an email data services provider, one out of every five legitimate emails never makes it to its destination. It’s either swept up by a SPAM filter or blocked by an ISP.

Social Security benefits make up a big part of a majority of seniors’ incomes. In fact, according to the Social Security Administration (SSA),
64 percent of “aged beneficiaries” received at least half of their income from Social Security in 2013. Whether you’re still decades away from joining these retirees or have already collected your final paycheck, here are a few ways to increase those benefits.

  1. Put in at least 35 years.

Your 35 highest-earning years are factored into the equation that the SSA uses to calculate your Social Security benefits. But because you only need 40 credits to qualify, and you can earn up to four annually, you don’t have to actually work 35 years—unless you want to maximize your Social Security benefits. Work fewer years and a corresponding number of zeros will be factored into the calculation, thus decreasing your benefit payout.

Each year the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) collects data on the race, ethnicity, sex and job category of private sector employees. The data is then provided to the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) at the Department of Labor.Employers with 100 or more employees—or those with fewer than 100 if the company is owned or affiliated with another company for a total of 100 or more employees—submit the data to the EEOC using Standard Form 100, also known as EEO-1. Federal contractors with 50 or more employees are also required to report employment data to the EEOC.

If you’re like most Americans who want to buy a home, you’re going to need a mortgage. In fact, according to CoreLogic, a real estate data company, homebuyers making cash purchases accounted for a mere
34 percent of total transactions in 2015—the lowest percentage since 2008. It’s easy to see why: the median existing-home price for all housing types nationwide is currently $210,800. And 62 percent of Americans have less than $1,000 in savings.

Of course, whether to obtain a loan or empty your savings account isn’t the only decision you’ll need to make when purchasing real estate. Should you go the mortgage route, you’ll need to calculate costs carefully in order to determine how much property you can afford and how high a mortgage payment you can comfortably take on. For the most accurate calculation, avoid making these mistakes.


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