15 or 30 Year Mortgage?


A 15 or 30 year mortgage? That's the question facing Ilana and her husband as she says 15 and he says 30. Who's leaning in the right direction?

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"Jill on Money" theme music is by Joel Goodman,

Are We on Track for Retirement?

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We start the show this week with Nick from Wisconsin who had a few questions regarding his current mortgage which also led to a discussion about his retirement savings strategy.

Next up was a great retirement planning discussion with Michelle from Georgia. She and her husband are in great shape, sometimes it just helps to hear that from an unbiased third party, like yours truly!

Who's a better financial planner, a man or a woman?

That was the gist of the story when today’s guest, Blair duQuesnay, penned an op-ed in the New York Times.

I’m guessing she didn’t think it would go viral. Welp, it did.

Consider Firing Your Male Broker took off like gangbusters with reaction coming down on both sides of the aisle.

What follows is from Blair’s blog, The Belle Curve, and it explains why exactly there was so much reaction:

Some criticized the use of the term broker, which applies only to registered representatives of brokerage firms, commissioned sales agents. Those of us who work for independent RIA firms are advisers who adhere to a fiduciary standard. That is a different and equally important topic for an NYT op-ed. Maybe they will let me write it. Bottom line, the investing public uses the words broker/advisor/adviser interchangeably. They do not know the difference, and the article met them where they are.

Other criticism revolved around the use of research on investment performance to justify the argument. In my mind, the research was not central to the thesis there should be more women advisors. Barber and Odean found that among individual investors, women outperformed men because the traded less often and incurred less trading costs. That information is fascinating and led to additional work on the affect of overconfidence on investment performance. It is not the sole basis of my argument, merely additional ammunition.

Less than 20% of financial advisors are women, a statistic that has not changed in the 15 years I have been here. It’s about time for more.

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"Jill on Money" theme music is by Joel Goodman,

Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) and Refinancing

Rising home prices has helped many homeowners get richer on paper...they have also prompted a big influx of questions about private mortgage insurance (PMI) and refinancing, so we figured it was time to bring on an expert.

Nicole Hamilton, a tech executive-turned-mortgage and homeownership expert, founded Tactile Finance, the first digital tools that let people visualize their homeownership outcomes over time, putting consumers on a level playing field with the professionals who serve them.

Nicole is also the author of the book Avoid the Money Pit, Turn Your Home into a Financial Powerhouse, and the founder of, a company that provides unbiased, independent information for homeowners to get the best financial outcome possible.

We touched on a variety of topics and questions facing the average consumer as they try to navigate the murky waters of homeownership:

  • What if I don’t have 20% for a downpayment?
  • What is PMI?
  • How do I know if I need PMI?
  • Should PMI be a dealbreaker?
  • Will PMI eventually go away?
  • Will PMI go away on its own or is it my responsibility?
  • Is refinancing always a good idea?
  • Pros and cons of an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM)
  • Should I prepay my mortgage?

All those topics and more! And based on what we’ve been seeing in the inbox, I think we did a pretty good job covering all your burning questions!

So when you’re checking out those open houses this summer, or considering a refi before rates go even higher, playback this episode and you’ll be well armed with loads of information.

“Better Off” is sponsored by Betterment.

Have a money question? Email us here or call 855-411-JILL.

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"Better Off" theme music is by Joel Goodman,