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How can you boost the payout from a home insurance claim?

Losing items in a home fire, burglary, or other catastrophe is traumatizing, not to mention costly. That’s why we suggest homeowners insurance replacement-cost coverage: It compensates you for the actual cost to replace your home’s contents—up to your policy limits—not for their depreciated value.

Apple Pay virtual wallet looks like an also-ran

Apple's entry into the crowded virtual wallet market, Apple Pay, is supposed to "transform mobile payments" today.

The best space heaters for $100 or less


Space heaters keep you comfortable in one of two ways: warming up the room around you or bathing you in direct heat in a drafty room or chilly office.

Putting a finger on credit card fraud

When it comes to new ways to pay with your credit cards, attention right now is focused on Apple Pay, a new digital wallet from Apple that works with the iPhone 6 and 6 plus and will eventually work with the Apple watch.

Driving a BMW with night vision proves illuminating


We recently had the opportunity to experience the latest in night vision technology on a BMW 7 Series.

Frisky BMW 428i Gran Coupe adds versatility to the recipe


Lately, BMW has been concocting model variants with such frequency as to recall Heinz’s understated 57 varieties.

The test drive

You’ve already done a big part of the test drive without even leaving the dealership’s lot. Now it’s time to get the feel of the vehicle in motion.

How to pick a Medigap plan

Medigap health plans are basically bookkeeping operations. Unlike Medicare Advantage plans, Medigap plans don't make any decisions about what to cover.

How to buy your first car


Owning a car brings tremendous freedom and responsibility. But it also brings significant expenses, such as the purchase, maintenance, repairs, insurance, and fuel.

Buying vs. leasing basics

If you are deciding whether to pay for a new car or just get a loaner, check out some of the major differences between buying and leasing.  In general it makes financial sense for most to buy a vehicle especially if you drive a lot of miles and have kids that may dirty or damage the interior.

Are all name-brand products sold at big-box stores the same as those sold at dealers?

Q. I keep hearing that a name-brand product purchased at a big-box store (i.e., Lowe’s, Home Depot) is slightly different from one you may purchase at a local dealer, even if it is represented as being the same model.

How to pick a Medicare Advantage plan

In the months leading up to the fall Medicare open enrollment season, your mailbox may be overflowing with sales brochures from Medicare Advantage plans.

Wood vs. plastic cutting boards: Which is better?

Q. Is it a fact that plastic kitchen cutting boards harbor more bacteria than wooden ones?—Sawrie Wuest, Asheville, NC A.

Don't be an Ebola scam victim

With the Ebola virus making headlines across the globe, scammers are trying to use the deadly disease to trick people out of their money or into downloading malware onto their computer or mobile device.

Now, Halloween costumes for your refrigerator


Having a Halloween party this year? Don’t forget a costume for your refrigerator. Yep, now there are supersized refrigerator magnets that allow you to dress up your refrigerator as Little Red Riding Hood, a bookshelf, a Lego set, or a creepy scene called Friday the 13th.

GMOs and food: Do you know what you're eating?

For more than two decades, Consumers Union, the policy and advocacy arm of Consumer Reports, has supported the labeling of genetically engineered foods, also known as genetically modified organisms, or GMOs.

Sony PlayStation TV is a great low-cost way to extend your play

Sony released the PlayStation TV earlier this week, and we bought one to try it out. This small box, similar in size to a streaming-media player, is a micro-gaming console that fits right into Sony’s PlayStation gaming ecosystem: It connects to a TV (other than the one your PlayStation 4 is using) and allows you to play games and stream entertainment.

Best holiday gift ideas for kids


Buying gifts for kids these days is not easy. They want the coolest electronics, and adults want them to have appropriate electronics.

Top-rated matching washers and dryers


Matching washer and dryer pairs are a popular choice but some don't make a great couple. Their coordinating style and color make a statement, but you'll question how a terrific washer and a noisy dryer that's tough on clothes ended up together.

What 12-year-olds do on social media

There’s been renewed chatter recently about how much time kids should spend in front of their digital devices, with one study finding that children who refrained were better at reading emotional cues in real life, and the revelation that Steve Jobs didn’t let his children use an iPad.


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