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Six New Mariner Finance Branches Open in September

In the month of August, Mariner Finance opened nine new branches in four different states; Illinois, Missouri, Virginia, and Wisconsin. Mariner Finance continues to grow and expand as a company, and in September opened six new branches in five different states; Kentucky, Ohio, Missouri, Texas, and Virginia. The Baltimore-based business opened its first branch in 2002 and has grown to well over 200 branches and 1,500 employees in 19 states, dedicated to helping consumers meet their individual credit needs. Continue reading

Nine New Mariner Finance Branches Open in August

In the month of July, Mariner Finance opened five new branches in three different states; Illinois, Utah and Texas. Mariner Finance continues to grow and expand as a company and in August opened nine new branches in four different states; Virginia, Wisconsin, Missouri and Illinois. The Baltimore-based business opened in 2002 with one branch, and now serves well over 200 branches and employs about 1,500 individuals across communities in eighteen different states.
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Money-Saving Tips for Back-to-School Shopping

It’s that time of the year again, when the swimsuits and patio furniture displays are being replaced by back-to-school supplies! Whether you have kids getting excited for school in the fall, a college student ready to leave the nest, or you’re attending school yourself, back-to-school expenses add up fast. Studies have shown that a family with school aged children will spend over $600 on school supplies and related purchases; with the biggest amount going toward clothes. From supplies to clothing, we’ve collected some tried-and-true tips for back-to-school savings. Continue reading

State Sales Tax Holidays for 2016

With back-to-school season looming ahead, it’s a good idea to start looking for ways to save on all those end of summer purchases. We took a look at the states we are currently located in, and found that many of them offer tax-free shopping days in 2016. These sales tax holidays are a great way to save money this upcoming school year. Don’t live in one of these states? Plan a day trip with family to a participating state, or contact your state legislator for more information about how to make this possible in your community. Continue reading

Tips for New Homeowners

As a new homeowner you may feel a bit overwhelmed when thinking about all of the responsibilities you have just gained. At times it may seem so daunting you don’t even know where to start. We rounded up a list of tips to help make your new homeowner status less daunting.

1. Change Your Locks: This should be one of the first things you do upon buying your home. You never know who has a key to your house, realtors, neighbors, family friends of the people who previously owned the house, etc. To get some piece of mind, change your locks right away.

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Easy and Cheap Super Bowl Party Recipes

Save money this Super Bowl Sunday with these recipes that will be sure to impress your friends and your wallet! Whether you’re going to a friend’s house or hosting the party yourself, be sure to check out these budget-friendly recipes that range from quick dips to more filling dishes. Stick to your budget by making a grocery list from the recipe before you head to the store and use a reusable pan or container you already own.

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Pepperoni Pizza Dip
6 ounces of ricotta cheese
6 ounces of mozzarella cheese
6 ounces (¾ cup) pizza or marinara sauce
Pepperoni slices to cover the top
Crackers, pita bread, or veggies

1. Preheat oven to 350°
2. Spread ricotta cheese in an evenly in a dish
3. Pour pizza sauce over and spread evenly
4. Top with cheese and pepperoni slices
5. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until cheese is brown and bubbly
6. Serve with crackers, pita bread or veggies


4 ripe avocados
½ cup chopped cilantro
¼ cup lime or lemon juice
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon salt
Pepper to taste
Hot sauce or chipotle powder (optional)

1. Peel and mash avocados in medium size bowl
2. Mix in cilantro, lime (or lemon) juice, extra-virgin olive oil, salt, pepper and hot sauce or chipotle powder (if desired)
3. Serve with tortilla chips


Apple Nachos
1 bag of apples (Granny Smith or any kind you’d like)
Peanut butter/Caramel sauce/Melted chocolate
Toppings of your choice: Nuts, dried fruit, mini chocolate chips, granola…

1. Cut apples into slices and layer them on a plate or pan
2. Drizzle melted peanut butter, caramel sauce, or melted chocolate (you can pick just one or add all three)
3. Sprinkle the toppings of your choice on top and serve


Potato Bites
1.5 pounds small red potatoes
4 slices of bacon
1 cup sour cream
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon chopped chives
½ cup shredded cheddar cheese

1. Preheat oven to 375°
2. Boil potatoes in sauce pan with water until tender (approx. 10 min) then drain and cool
3. Cook bacon and crumble into pieces (set aside)
4. Take the cooled potatoes and cut them in half. Scrap out the center of each half for all potatoes
5. In a bowl mix potato centers, bacon, sour cream, salt, pepper, chives, and cheese.
6. Spoon mixture back in each potato shell and bake for 10 minutes and garnish with parsley once removed from the oven


Meatloaf Muffins
2 pounds lean ground beef (or turkey)
10. 5 ounces (1 can typically) condensed vegetable soup
½ cup chopped onion
1 cup dry bread crumbs
2 eggs
1 teaspoon salt
Pinch of pepper
¾ cup ketchup (optional)
Instant mashed potatoes as a topping (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350° and lightly grease a muffin tin
2. Mix ground beef, vegetable soup, bread crumbs, eggs, salt, pepper, and scoop into tins
3. Bake for 1 hour and if desired remove at 50 minutes add ketchup on top and bake for another 10 minutes
4. Top with instant mashed potatoes if desired


Buffalo Chicken Wings
8 ounces of hot sauce
½ cup buttermilk
½ teaspoon garlic powder
3 pounds chicken wings, separated into two pieces and wing tip discarded

1. Place 1 cup hot sauce, buttermilk, and garlic powder in a large plastic bag and stir to combine. Add wings until they are evenly coated and let marinate in refrigerator for 2 to 12 hours
2. Heat broiler to high and arrange rack in the middle of the oven. Cover baking sheet with aluminum foil and place on a wire rack
3. Remove wings from refrigerator and allow excess sauce to drip off before placing on wire rack/pan
4. Broil for about 12 minutes, let cool. Serve with ranch dip if desired by mixing a package of ranch and plain Greek yogurt for a healthier dip option


Pie Fries
1 package of refrigerated pie crust
12 ounces (1.5 cups) apple (or fruit of your choice) pie filling
1 egg
1 tablespoon water
Caramel sauce for dipping (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350° and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper
2. In a blender, finally chop the apple pie filling until smooth
3. Dust surface with flour and roll out one of the pie crusts
4. Evenly layer the apple pie filling on top and place the other pie crust on top of that and secure the edges
5. Make an egg wash (egg + water), and brush on top, followed by sugar and cinnamon
6. Cut ½ inch by 2 inch stripes and place on baking sheet
7. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown


Strawberry Shortcake Kabobs
1 pound cake or angel food cake (store bought or make your own!)
2 packages of strawberries
1 bag white chocolate morsels
Kabob sticks

1. Remove the leafy top of the strawberries
2. Cut cake of your choice in cubes
3. Alternate strawberry and cake on kabob stick
4. Melt the white chocolate (in microwave or stove top)
5. Drizzle on kabobs, let cool and serve

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Important Tax Dates

Use this simplified listing to stay on top of this tax season’s deadlines. Keep in mind, these are not the only deadlines for tax season and dates for tax deadlines change each year.

January January 17th: Deadline to pay your fourth quarter estimated tax payment for the year 2016. *Tip: You can skip this estimated payment without penalty if you file your return and pay your balance in full by February 1, 2017.

January 23th: Opening day to file 2016 individual tax returns.

February February 1st: Deadline for self-employed individuals to file and to pay their taxes in order to avoid a penalty if they do not make their fourth quarter estimated tax payment. *Tip: You should receive a W-2 form from your employer by this date in order to file taxes for 2016. If you do not receive a W-2 form by this date, you should contact your employer immediately. February 15th: Deadline for employees who claim exemption from withholding to file a new W-4 form with their employers.

April April 18th: Deadline to file individual tax returns (Form 1040, 1040A, or 1040EZ) for the year 2016, or to request an automatic extension (Form 4868). *Tip: An extension provides an extra six months to file your return, but payment of the tax is still due by April 18th. You can submit payment for tax along with the extension form.

Last day to make a contribution to traditional IRA, Roth IRA, Health Savings Account, SEP-IRA, or solo 401k for the 2016 tax year.

First quarter estimated tax payments due for the 2016 tax year.

Final deadline to file an original tax return (Form 1040) and amended tax return (Form 1040X) for the tax year 2016 and still claim a tax refund. *Tip: Make sure to mail the amended return well before April 18th to guarantee your tax refund will be processed in a timely manner. In addition, obtain proof of mailing, such as a certified mail receipt, for your records.

Deadline to file estate income tax or trust income tax returns (Form 1041), or to request an automatic five-month extension of time to file (Form 7004).

Deadline to file partnership tax returns (Form 1065), or to request an automatic five month extension of time to file (Form 7004).

Final deadline for estates, trusts, or partnerships to file an amended tax return and still claim a tax refund for the year 2016.

Source: Tax Calendars for 2017 (IRS Publication 509)


Sources: Tax Calendars for use in 2016 (IRS Publication 509) and About Money

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