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99 Ways to Save

15 Ways to Save on Your Finances

You can lower the costs of managing and protecting your money

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11. Dump your dogs

If you've got some old dogs — investment losers, that is — sitting in your portfolio, selling them for a loss could provide a tax benefit. Likewise, selling investments when you've held them a year or longer will generate long-term capital gains, which are more tax-friendly than short-term gains.

12. Title trick

When refinancing your home, slash your closing costs by getting a discount of up to 50 percent off your title insurance by asking for a "reissue" rate. It may also be available if you buy from someone who bought the home within the past 10 years.

13. Family ties

Having adult children or grandchildren living with you may mean special tax breaks for you. Ask your tax preparer about claiming dependents for any family members you support — even if they're not your offspring.

14. Save on stamps

Schedule payments for your bills online and you won't need to buy stamps.

15. Free credit report

Don't pay for your credit report. Request a free copy once a year from each of the three credit-reporting companies (Equifax, TransUnion and Experian) at AnnualCreditReport.com.

Contributors to 99 Great Ways to Save 2013: Lynnette Khalfani-Cox, Tara Finnegan Coates, Joan Rattner Heilman, Stacy Julien, Megan Lawson, Marlece Lusk, Bob Lyford, Anne Masters, Jeff Yeager and AARP members like you.

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FISCAL FASTING: Home budgeting expert Jeff Yeager, the Ultimate Cheapskate, shares tips for doing a fiscal fast, in which you don't spend any money for a week.

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