Here's help using the tactics we presented in our June cover story, "Simplify Your Life." May 1, 2009 Simple Portfolios As miserably as Standard and Poor's 500-stock index has performed recently, it still has beaten two-thirds of big-company U.S.-stock funds over the past five years. And that, in a nutshell, is why simple portfolios of index mutual funds still make sound financial sense for many investors: They're a dependable way to get better-than-average returns. See 3 Winning Portfolios.Guidance on Sizing Up Annuities Get an overview of annuities from this Kiplinger video. Sponsored Content We look at four investments that promise to protect your money or pay up. Some are better than others at keeping their promises. See these Savings Guarantees. See how much monthly income your lump sum will buy, and shop for immediate annuites. Advertisement Budgeting Tips Use our household budget worksheet to compare monthly spending projections with actual expenditures. Mint.com gathers information from you accounts and tracks your cash flow, credit cards, loans and even investments. If you want to interact with other users, try Wesabe.com or Geezeo.com. You Need a Budget software encourages you to live on last month's income, not paycheck to paycheck, plus follow other budgeting rules. Advertisement Home Time Savers Save time and money on your yard. Read about smart ways to spend your landscaping dollars. Hiring a Pro How to find a pro near you who can lighten your workload. Financial Adviser: National Association of Personal Finance Advisors, (847-483-5400) Advertisement Tax Preparer: Find an H&R Block preparer (800-472-5625) or a CPA. Travel Agent: American Society of Travel Agents Medical Bills: Manager Alliance of Claims Assistant Professionals, (888-394-5163) Elderly Caregiver: Home Instead Senior Care, (888-484-5759) Advertisement Independent Insurance Agent: Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America,(800-221-7917) College Admissions Consultant: Independent Educational Consultants Association, (703-591-4850) Professional Organizer: National Association of Professional Organizers, (856-380-6828) Use Our Tools Find the best online broker. Evaluate funds for your portfolio. Choose a college savings plan. Pick the credit card that works hardest for you. Figure out how much life insurance you need. See whether refinancing your mortgage makes sense. Make sure your retirement savings are on track. Get Up to Speed on the Basics You'll find simple-to-digest information on taxes, investing, saving and more.