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Karen Poff

karenpoff.png Karen Poff is a Senior Extension Agent with Virginia Cooperative Extension, serving the Northern Shenandoah Valley and specializing in Family Financial Management. She has worked for VCE since 1987. She holds a master of public administration degree from James Madison University and has been certified by the Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education as an accredited financial counselor.



Recent posts by Karen Poff

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Karen Poff

Back to school shopping sanity

Virginia's "sales tax holiday" the first weekend in August can make these expenses a little more affordable for families. But this year, to make the shopping experience even more enticing, retailers have created "Back-to-School Saturday," slated for Aug. 11.
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Karen Poff

OPT-OUT of pre-approved credit offers

Are you one of the many people who are annoyed by a constant barrage of pre-approved credit offers? If so, you'll be glad to know there is a solution to the problem.
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Karen Poff

Why test your drinking water?

Many of us don't give much thought to where our drinking water comes from. We just turn on the faucet, the water comes out, and we drink or cook with it. Some of us filter it through a pitcher to make it "taste better." But how often do we consider the more important question of whether or not it is safe to drink?
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Karen Poff

2011 tax tips

Some people have already filed their 2011 taxes, while others are still in the middle of preparing their returns. No matter which category fits your situation, these tax tips from the IRS are worth reading.
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Karen Poff

Don't pay to borrow your own money at tax time!

The advertisements for tax services around this time of year often come with an offer of a refund anticipation loan. They might have a different name such as "Rapid Refund" or "Fast Cash," but the fine print will show that the "refund" is really a loan.
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Karen Poff

Home insurance...renters need it too!

Everyone has heard of homeowner's insurance. Mortgage companies require it when you purchase a home to ensure that the house will be covered. Fortunately, homeowner's insurance also protects the personal property in the home, which benefits the homeowner, too.
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Karen Poff

Clearing clutter with freecycle

A reader sent a comment after my last blog about clearing clutter with Freecycle (thanks Kristin!). We weren't able to post the comment because of a policy of not allowing websites to be listed in comments. So, I'm writing this follow-up blog to tell you more about Freecycle.
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Karen Poff

Clearing the holiday clutter

During the time from Thanksgiving to New Year's, we create an extra 5 million tons of garbage. The extra waste is generated because the average American household increases its trash output by 25 percent during the holidays. To keep all of that extra trash from filling up our landfills, we need to think twice before tossing it into the garbage can.
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Karen Poff

Planning ahead can ease holiday stress

Because most people have high expectations of the holidays, many families experience extra tension during November and December. People feel the pressure of long "to do" lists and numerous activities. Ironically, family members may be more short-tempered or overly sensitive during a time of year that is supposed to bring joy. The keys to managing this busy season are adequate planning, advance preparation, shortcuts and stress management.
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Karen Poff

Save money on insurance

One thing that no one can afford to be without is insurance. You might roll the dice and go without it. But the odds are that sooner or later you will encounter a serious life circumstance that you cannot afford.

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Author - Brittany Michael Author - Karen Poff Author - Karen Ridings Family & Human Development Family Financial Management Food, Nutrition, Health




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