TURKEY TETRAZZINI RECIPE

Turkey Tetrazzini is an easy pasta casserole that is a perfectly delicious way to use leftover turkey or chicken. It is easy to make ahead to serve for a crowd.

Did you know that Turkey Tetrazzini is an American dish? Yup. According to Wikipedia, the American pasta casserole, that first surfaced in print in Good Housekeeping’s October 1908 issue, was named after an Italian Opera Star, Luisa Tetrazzini. While that may or may not be true (just because it’s on the internets doesn’t make it so, right?), it sure is fun to wonder what the famous opera star must have been like to be named after such a tasty casserole that has become a favorite comfort food classic for so many.

Source: shewearsmanyhats.com

VA Loans and Credit Scores

There are a lot of things to keep track of before applying for a VA loan. Aside from providing your current financial information and checking your VA eligibility, you’re going to need to prove that you have a decent enough credit score.

During the application process, your lender is going to pull your score. Depending on a number of factors, this score could be the breaking point for your mortgage – or it could save you thousands over the life of the loan.

Here’s everything you need to know about credit scores and VA loans.

Check today’s VA rates.

How do credit scores affect VA loans?

One of the biggest impacts your credit score will have is helping to determine what mortgage rate you get.

Mortgage rates aren’t the same for everyone. Depending on factors like the size of the downpayment, debt-to-income ratio and, of course, your credit score, different rates will be available. Lenders will combine this information and look at what’s called a rate sheet. The rate sheet is essentially a chart that shows the specific rate offered to home buyers with a specific set of information.

So, the higher the credit score you have, the better chance you have of getting a lower rate.

Some home buyers hear this and are concerned that not making a downpayment will force their mortgage rate higher. It’s true that lower downpayments can lead to higher rates. But because VA loan rates are consistently much lower than rates for other mortgages, a loan with no downpayment could carry a lower rate than a comparable mortgage type.

To avoid making a large downpayment (or making one altogether), keeping your credit score healthy is the best way to get lower mortgage rates.

What is the minimum credit score for VA loans?

Another large impact of credit scores on VA loans is that having a low score can immediately disqualify you from being eligible.

While it’s true that the VA doesn’t require a minimum credit score, many lenders will only accept a mortgage if the borrower has a score of 620 or higher. Of course, there are always exceptions to the rule, but home buyers will want to play it safe and keep their credit score as high as possible.

Check today’s rates.

Getting a VA loan with lower credit

Any VA home buyer with a credit score below 620 should work with a lender to find out how to be eligible. Usually, this means bumping your credit score higher.

The good news is that getting your credit score above 620 can be an incredibly quick process. Credit scores are always changing, for better or for worse. That means that a few quick, smart decisions can help you get a higher score.

At the same time, a decision at the wrong time can cause a huge credit score drop. Too often, home buyers go out and buy a new car or open a new credit card during the application process. Both of these will result in a quick drop of credit, and that will be reflected in the application.

So, along with speaking with a lender on how to get approved, work to pay off any credit card debt or car payments while avoiding getting new loans. If you do this, you’ll have a higher credit score in no time.

Credit scores and VA refinances

The VA streamline refinance is among the easiest refinances to get approved for. However, a low credit score can hurt your chances of refinancing and saving money on your home.

Any VA homeowners who get disqualified from a refinance should ask their lender why. If the problem is a lower credit score, then working to increase the score is the best course of action.

It could also be that the credit score is too low with the current application. Credit scores, combined with home equity and the debt-to-income ratio, will determine your rate and eligibility. Sometimes, increasing your equity or improving your debt-to-income ratio can do the trick, and you won’t have to work hard on your credit at all.

Checking your eligibility

If you’re interested in getting a VA loan or refinance but aren’t sure if your credit score is high enough, the first thing to do is apply. You’ll never know what rates are available to you until you speak with a lender.

 

SOUTHERN SWEET CORNBREAD

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This recipe for southern sweet cornbread has been a readers favorite for years!! You’re going to love the simplicity of the recipe, and amazing outcome for this moist southern sweet cornbread!

Let’s talk cornbread! Now I know that I have many recipes for southern cornbread here on I Heart Recipes. However, my readers absolutely LOVE the very first homemade sweet cornbread recipe that I posted many years ago. The sweet cornbread is simply the best. It’s better than Jiffy, and all those other store bought cornbread mixes out there. It always comes out so buttery and moist, it’s just the perfect cornbread. The only probably with my previous cornbread recipe was the amount that it made, and one of the ingredients.

Source: iheartrecipes.com

What Credit Score Is Needed for a Student Loan?

The credit score needed for a student loan will depend on the type of loan you want to take out — federal or private. So if you don’t have a credit score, or if your scores are bad, you have options.

You don’t need a credit score to get a federal loan

Federal direct undergraduate loans don’t require borrowers to have a credit history or a co-signer. Federal student loans are preferred over private student loans because they carry lower interest rates and offer income-driven repayment loan forgiveness options.

To get a federal student loan, you’ll have to meet basic eligibility criteria, such as citizenship requirements and enrollment in an eligible program.

Submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, to start the process for a federal student loan. This is the key to unlock all types of aid, including grants, scholarships and work-study.

Making payments on a federal student loan can help you build credit, but a score won’t appear with one of the three credit reporting bureaus until about six months after you start paying on it.

Private lenders expect a credit score or a co-signer

If you’ve maxed out federal student loans and you need a private student loan, you’ll need a credit history to qualify.

Most private lenders require you to have a good credit score, which would be 670 or higher on a 300-850 scale used by FICO, the most widely known credit score.

If you don’t have a credit history, you’ll need a co-signer with a good credit score and a steady income in order to qualify for the loan. A co-signer takes on the responsibility to repay the loan if you can’t.

There are a few lenders that don’t require credit or a co-signer. Generally, they’ll consider earning potential instead of a credit history. But interest rates on these loans are higher than federal student loans and credit-based private student loans.

Credit score needed to refinance student loans

If you already have college debt, refinancing can save you money by reducing your rate. You need good or excellent credit to qualify for student loan refinancing. Lenders’ minimum credit score requirements range from 650 to 680.

The better your credit, the lower the rate you’ll likely get. The typical credit scores of borrowers approved for student loan refinancing is often in the high 700s. You may be able to refinance student loans with bad credit if you apply with a co-signer.

In addition to credit score, refinance lenders look at other factors including debt-to-income ratio. The required debt-to-income ratio for student loan refinancing is generally 50% or less. A DTI less than 20% is excellent.

CROCK-POT PORK SIRLOIN TIP ROAST WITH CREAMY MUSHROOM GRAVY

The slow cooker method creates fall-apart tender pork with a creamy, flavorful gravy. This Crock-Pot Sirloin Tip Roast with Creamy Mushroom Gravy is a comforting, family-friendly meal.

This recipe was born from my desire to come up with a way to cook the neat little pork sirloin tip roasts that I snatched up on a visit to Costco. It was also born from my desire to have an excuse to make mashed potatoes…

Source: fromvalerieskitchen.com

Choosing the right business credit card is easier than ever.

Choosing the right business credit card is easier than ever.

No matter which card you choose, you’ll enjoy important features like:

  • Expense management tools
  • No fee for additional employee cards
  • EMV smart chip technology for added security
  • Mobile payments in store, online, and in app using Apple Pay®2, Google Pay™3, and Samsung Pay
To apply today for the right Comerica Credit Card for your business:
  • Current Comerica customers, please sign into Comerica Web Banking® and click the “Apply for a Comerica Credit Card” link in Related Links, or visit a banking center near you.
  • Not a Comerica customer? Please visit a local banking center near you.

Earn valuable rewards

1 Reward points can be redeemed as a cash deposit to a checking or savings account or as a statement credit to your credit card account. First purchase bonus points will be applied  6 to 8 weeks after first purchase and are not awarded for balance transfers or cash advances.

2 Apple Pay works with iPhone 6 and later in stores, apps, and websites in Safari; with Apple Watch in stores and apps; with iPad Pro, iPad Air 2, and iPad mini 3 and later in apps and websites; and with Mac in Safari with an Apple Pay enabled iPhone 6 or later or Apple Watch. For a list of compatible Apple Pay devices, see https://support.apple.com/km207105.

3 Google Pay is available for any NFC- and HCE-enabled Android device running KitKat 4.4+.

4 Reward points can be redeemed as a cash deposit to a checking or savings account with this Financial Institution or as a statement credit to your credit card account within one to two billing cycles.

5 Cash Rewards Card: “Cash Back Rewards” are the rewards you earn under the program. Cash Back Rewards are tracked as points and each point in Cash Back Rewards earned is equal to $0.01. You may simply see “Cash Back” in marketing material when referring to the rewards you earn. You will earn 1 Reward Point (“Point”) for each dollar of eligible Net Purchases charged to your Account during each billing cycle. You will also earn 2 additional Points (for a total of 3 Points) for each dollar of Net Purchases charged to your Account during each billing cycle at merchant locations that are classified in the merchant category code as office supplies or cellular phone, landline, internet and cable TV services. In addition, you will earn 1 additional Point (for a total of 2 Points) for each dollar of Net Purchases charged to your Account during each billing cycle at merchant locations that are classified in any of the following merchant category codes: automated fuel dispensers and service stations or restaurants. The number of additional Points earned on office supply store purchases, cellular phone, landline, internet and cable TV services, automated fuel dispensers, and service stations or restaurants is unlimited. Points expire five years from the end of the quarter in which they are earned.

6 Bonus rewards points or cash back will be applied 6 to 8 weeks after first purchase and are not awarded for balance transfers or cash advances. One-time bonus rewards will be awarded after eligible net purchases totaling $2,000 or more are made to your account within three months from account opening.

7 The Elan Rewards Program is subject to change. Rewards are earned on eligible net purchases. Net purchases are purchases minus credits and returns. Not all transactions are eligible to earn rewards, such as Advances, Balance Transfers and Convenience Checks. Upon approval, see your Cardmember Agreement for details. You may not redeem Points, and you will immediately lose all of your Points, if your Account is closed to future transactions (including, but not limited to, due to Program misuse, failure to pay, bankruptcy, or death).

8 Real Rewards: You will earn 1.5 Reward Points (“Points”) for each dollar of eligible Net Purchases made with your Account within a billing cycle (equal to 1.5% cash back). Monthly net purchase points will be applied each billing cycle. Points expire five years from the end of the quarter in which they are earned.

9 Rewards PLUS: Points expire five years from the end of the quarter in which they are earned. You will earn 1.5 Reward Points (“Points”) for each dollar of eligible Net Purchases made with your Account. You may earn additional Points for purchases at merchants that are classified as: airlines, cellular phone services, or hotels (each, a “Category”). You will earn an additional 1.5 Reward Points (for a total of 3 Reward Points) for each dollar of Net Purchases in the one Category that has the highest total Net Purchases charged to your Account (the “Highest Category”) during each billing cycle.

The creditor and issuer of these cards is Elan Financial Services, pursuant to a license from Mastercard International Incorporated. Mastercard is a registered trademark, and the circles design is a trademark of Mastercard International Incorporated.

Apple and Apple Pay are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries.

 

 

 

FUNERAL POTATOES

These easy and delicious Funeral Potatoes (also called cheesy potatoes) are a cheesy hash brown casserole that makes the perfect warm side dish for any meal, holiday dinner, or potluck.

I can’t believe the holidays are almost here! These delicious funeral potatoes accompany many Sunday dinner, holiday dinners and potlucks this time of year in our house. They go well with everything and are a huge crowd pleasing side dish.

Source: tastesbetterfromscratch.com

College Credit for Military Service & Experience

Active-Duty and Veterans can receive college credit for military service and save time and money at the same time. Many colleges and universities provide military transfer credit for military experience via participation through ACE (American Council on Education). ACE collaborates with the Department of Defense (DoD) to extensively review military training and experiences in order to recommend appropriate course credit to member schools. ACE then works extensively with these member institutions to educate them on translating prior military learning experiences into college credit.

Receiving college credit for military service is a great benefit but the amount of credit received can often fall below expectations. There are many factors that can contribute to this but here are the most common:

  • The desired area of study or program is different than their MOC (Military Occupation Code).
  • Military experience or training is determined to be duplicate and applied to the same transfer credit recommendation.
  • Most ACE credits typically only apply to lower level, free elective coursework such as associates degree level classes.
  • Typically very few credits apply toward core requirement, upper level course work.
  • The institution’s transfer credit policies are not transparent.
  • Ultimately colleges determine the military college credits they will accept and how they will be applied to a specific degree.
  • Colleges don’t always follow the ACE recommendations or they may interpret them differently from one school to the next.

How to maximize military service for college transfer credits

  • Review your military transcript and ACE recommendations for courses and occupations.
  • Seek a degree that is aligned closely with your MOC.
  • Determine the school’s policy on accepting military college credits. Admissions counselors or college websites typically can provide this information.
  • Seek out schools that have good veterans programs or determine how military friendly your choices are.
  • Speak to several schools. Colleges interpret military training credits differently and can apply credits differently for the same degree program and military experience. The decisions may be very different!
  • Appeal any adverse decisions on military transfer credits. Successful appeals do happen.
  • Don’t enroll before the school determines your military transfer credits.

Service members or Veterans should request a military transcript as a first step.

Military Education and Experience Systems (includes Guard & Reserves by branch):

  • Air Force – The Community College of the Air Force (CCAF)
  • Army – AARTS System
  • Coast Guard – The Coast Guard Institute (CGI)
  • Marines – SMART System
  • Navy – SMART System

Veterans can access these systems unless they are not eligible. If the Veteran is not eligible they should complete the DD-295 and provide their DD-214 Discharge Document in order to receive college credit for military service.

WATERGATE SALAD RECIPE

Watergate Salad is a traditional fluff recipe with pistachio pudding, marshmallows, and pineapple! It’s the perfect potluck recipe.

This easy dessert salad has just a few ingredients and will remind your guests of childhood family gatherings.

Source: easygoodideas.com

The Best Business Credit Cards of 2019

If you’ve got a business, new or old, big or small, you should consider getting a business credit card. That’s because businesses need access to credit, and these specialized business credit cards can be a great way to fund business purchases, along with saving large amounts of money over time. This guide will review all the best small business credit card offers and explain how to maximize the benefits of each card. As with my list of the top personal travel rewards cards, I’m compiling my business picks based on which bonuses are the most valuable.

Here are the Best Business Credit Cards of 2019:

  • Chase Ink Business Preferred Credit Card: Best sign-up bonus
  • CitiBusiness AAdvantage Platinum Select World Mastercard : Best for American flyers
  • The Business Platinum® Card from American Express: Best for high-end perks
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit CardBest for Southwest flyers
  • Capital One Spark Miles for Business: Best for everyday spending
  • United Explorer Business Card: Best for United flyers
  • Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card: Best for Marriott guests
  • Capital One Spark Cash for Business: Best for cash back
  • Chase Ink Business Cash Credit Card: Best for pairing with an Ultimate Rewards card
  • American Express Business Gold Card: Best for flexible bonus categories

Can I Get a Business Credit Card?

If you are a small business or even if you just do some freelancing gigs, a business credit card can help you maximize your purchases, separate your expenses and save money on interest each year. Business credit cards offer bonus rewards on categories such as office supplies, airfare, advertising and gas. You can find more information on how to get business card right here.

Here are some things to research before you apply for a business credit card:

Before diving into the list, make sure to check out these posts for information on how applying for new cards affects your credit score, what to know about credit scores, mistakes to avoid and more.

  • 5 Things To Understand About Credit Before Applying For Cards
  • 3 Key Considerations for Improving Your Credit Score
  • Debunking Credit Card Myths: Does Applying For A Card Permanently Impact My Credit Score
  • Avoiding Late Payments and Other Silly Credit Card Mistakes

Compare the Best Business Credit Cards

Here’s how each of these cards stack up against each other. Note that for bonuses that have two spending tiers, we’re only factoring in the rewards you’d earn for meeting the first tier.

Finding the Business Credit Card That Fits Your Business Needs

Now, here’s a detailed rundown of the best business credit cards, with each card’s standout benefits and why it could be worth it for your business.

Current Bonus: Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first three months from account opening.

Current Bonus Value: $1,600

Standout Benefits: Get 3 points per dollar on the first $150,000 spent on travel, shipping, social media advertising and internet/cable/phone services each account anniversary year, plus 1 point per dollar on everything else. This card also offers cell phone insurance when you use it to pay your (and your employees’) cell phone bill, and primary rental car insurance. You can get employee cards at no additional cost, and there are no foreign transaction fees. Read the full card review here.

Annual Fee: $95

Why it’s worth it: The Ultimate Rewards program may not have the most transfer partners (it has 11 compared to Amex Membership Rewards’ 20), but they can get you outsized valuewhen you redeem points for free flights with carriers such as British Airways and United, or for award stays at Hyatt properties. And if you spend a lot on travel or social media advertising, you’ll be able to keep earning significant UR points after the sign-up bonus thanks to the 3x bonus category for the first $150,000 in combined purchases made each year.

Apart from the large stash of Ultimate Rewards points you will get with the Ink Business Preferred‘s current sign-up offer, this card stands out for its unique cell phone insurance benefit. It offers up to $600 in protection against covered theft or damage, for up to three claims per year with just a $100 deductible. Even better, this covers employees’ cell phones too, though remember that you need to pay the respective bills using this card to get coverage. Primary rental car insurance is another great perk as well.

For the reasons outlined above, I consider this one of the top two business credit cards currently available. The Ink Business Preferred can be an even more powerful tool if you also hold the Chase Sapphire Reserve, since you’ll then be able to redeem points for 1.5 cents apiece through the Chase travel portal.