Month: May 2014

How To Buy Cool & Cheap Christmas Gifts and Save Money

Now that the Christmas shopping season is upon us, many of us are wondering what on earth we should get for people in our family. “What do I buy for my ultra-trendy teenage niece?” you might be wondering, or “How can I get something that will wow Uncle Ron without breaking the bank?” Interestingly enough, …

The 9 Steps To Financial Freedom: Buy or Don’t Buy?

This week, The Simple Dollar is conducting a detailed review of Suze Orman’s The 9 Steps to Financial Freedom. This title has appeared on countless personal finance shelves over the past decade; does the content inside hold up? We aim to answer that very question. Now we come around to the big question about The …

Categories: Books and Reading

#5: Hiring Help

This is part of a series in which we re-evaluate Money Magazine’s “25 Rules To Grow Rich By”. One “rule” will be re-evaluated each weekday until the series concludes; you can keep tabs on the action at the 25 Rules index. Rule #5: Never hire a roofer, driveway paver or chimney sweep who is going …

Categories: Money

When the Fridge and the Wallet Are Both Empty

Several times in my life, I found myself without any money at all and an empty refrigerator. Thanks to my atrocious money management, I needed food but had absolutely no money to spare until my paycheck arrived later in the week. That meant three or so days without food. I didn’t want to go to …

Categories: Frugality

A Guide To Using Froogle

I was surprised recently to find out that several regular readers of The Simple Dollar were completely unaware of Froogle, Google’s comparative shopping search engine. It’s such a powerful tool for finding good and reputable deals that I wrote up a brief tour of the site, including a clear example, so that you can see …

The Value of Personal Appearance

One of the greatest challenges of living a lifestyle of financial freedom is determining the exact value of personal appearance. How does one balance a desire for less expensive clothing and personal care items with the expectations of the culture that enables their income and personal lives? On the one hand, many people who overspend …

The 9 Steps to Financial Freedom: Steps 7-9

This week, The Simple Dollar is conducting a detailed review of Suze Orman’s The 9 Steps to Financial Freedom. This title has appeared on countless personal finance shelves over the past decade; does the content inside hold up? We aim to answer that very question. Yesterday, we looked at the fourth, fifth, and sixth steps …

Categories: Books and Reading

#4: Paying for a Home

This is part of a series in which we re-evaluate Money Magazine’s “25 Rules To Grow Rich By”. One “rule” will be re-evaluated each weekday until the series concludes; you can keep tabs on the action at the 25 Rules index. How Much Should My House Payment Be? Rule #4: Your total housing payments should …

Video Game Addict? Here’s A Plan For Saving A Lot Of Money

Even during my worst days of spending, it was clear to me that I was overspending on my video game hobby. In fact, it became one of the first things that I cut my spending on. I was able to do this by developing a clear plan for cutting back on my video game purchases. …

The 9 Steps To Financial Freedom: Steps 4-6

This week, The Simple Dollar is conducting a detailed review of Suze Orman’s The 9 Steps to Financial Freedom. This title has appeared on countless personal finance shelves over the past decade; does the content inside hold up? We aim to answer that very question. Yesterday, we looked at the first three steps in The …

Categories: Books and Reading

#3: Buying a Home

This is part of a series in which we re-evaluate Money Magazine’s “25 Rules To Grow Rich By”. One “rule” will be re-evaluated each weekday until the series concludes; you can keep tabs on the action at the 25 Rules index. How Much House Can I Afford? Rule #3: Spend no more than two and …

Categories: Housing, Money

If I Could Do It All Over Again: Advising Myself At Age Eighteen

Ten years ago, I was in the midst of my freshman year in college. I had very little concept of money or what to do with it, but at that point I still had an overall positive net worth. If only I knew then what I know now, I sometimes think to myself, particularly when …

100 Questions To Ask Yourself About Your Financial Mindset

Recently, an old friend of mine came to me quite upset. She was drowning in debt, much like I was, and she told me she didn’t know where to even start. I told her that I would be glad to counsel her, but that I didn’t want to actually look at her financial numbers because …

The Wrong People Are Reading Personal Finance Sites

If you’re reading this, you’re more likely than not to have a pretty solid grip on your personal finances. You’re thinking about them regularly and you’re visiting and reading websites devoted to the topic. Getting your mindset in the right place is the foundation of personal finance; everything else just follows along with it. When …

The 9 Steps To Financial Freedom: Steps 1-3

This week, The Simple Dollar is conducting a detailed review of Suze Orman’s The 9 Steps to Financial Freedom. This title has appeared on countless personal finance shelves over the past decade; does the content inside hold up? We aim to answer that very question. Yesterday, we looked at The 9 Steps to Financial Freedom …

Categories: Books and Reading

#2: Home Refinancing

This is part of a series in which we re-evaluate Money Magazine’s “25 Rules To Grow Rich By”. One “rule” will be re-evaluated each weekday until the series concludes; you can keep tabs on the action at the 25 Rules index. When Should I Refinance My Home Rule #2: It’s worth refinancing your mortgage when …

Categories: Housing, Money

Evaluating and Minimizing Hobby Expenses

I have a multitude of hobbies that I enjoy, but lately I’ve been evaluating them more carefully in terms of the time spent and their cost. I spent two weeks recording the time I spent on my various hobbies and then estimated the cost of that time spent to get a “cost per hour” estimate …

Categories: Frugality, Money

#1: Home Renovation

This post is part of a series in which we re-evaluate Money Magazine’s “25 Rules To Grow Rich By”. One “rule” will be re-evaluated each weekday until the series concludes; you can keep tabs on the action at the 25 Rules index. Rule #1: For return on investment, the best home renovation is to upgrade …

Categories: Housing, Money

How To Get Rich – According To Money Magazine

People email me all the time asking how to get rich. They are usually underwhelmed when I tell them there is no secret and definitely no quick way to do it. There are, however some general rules and principles that hold true. The Simple Dollar devotes much time to discussing these topics. Recently, I had …

Categories: Money