Month: May 2014

If You Don’t Need It, It’s Not a Deal!

The following guest post is from Jason of FrugalDad.com. Jason writes about frugal living, family finances, and other related topics at his blog. With the holiday shopping season in full swing I am reminded of how often people rush out to buy something just because it is on sale. I admit, I enjoy saving money …

Categories: Getting Started

The Simple Dollar Weekly Roundup: College Football Edition

I’m apparently one of a tiny handful of college football fans out there that actually thinks the BCS system works well. Almost every year, it does a very good job of identifying the two best teams in the country to play in a championship game where things are decided on the field, as it should …

Categories: Books and Reading

The Basics of Dealing with a Loan Default

Over the past few weeks, several readers have written in with questions related to defaulting on their loans. Some individuals were in a precarious situation and were wondering about the consequences of defaulting, while others had already defaulted on their loan and were wondering what the consequences were. What’s default? First of all, a loan …

Categories: Getting Started

Family Traditions: What Children Really Want for Christmas

While I recuperate, I’ll be sprinkling in a few guest posts from some of my favorite personal finance bloggers. This is a guest post from J.D. Roth, who writes about smart personal finance at Get Rich Slowly. Every year, people lament the commercialization of Christmas, yet few are willing to do anything about it. Christmas …

Categories: Home and Life

Overcoming Obstacles

As I’ve written about on here and Twittered about more than a few times, I’ve been through some serious health issues over the last month and a half. It’s actually been a long string of semi-related things – ear infection, sinus infection, TMJ, a very strong allergic reaction to Bactrim, a virus that threw a …

Categories: Getting Started

Reader Mailbag #40

Each Monday, The Simple Dollar opens up the reader mailbags and answers ten to twenty simple questions offered up by the readers on personal finance topics and many other things. Got a question? Ask it in the comments. You might also enjoy the archive of earlier reader mailbags. As usual, we’ll start things off with …

Categories: Books and Reading

Review: Outliers

Every other Sunday, The Simple Dollar reviews a personal finance, personal development, or entrepreneurship book. Ever wondered how exactly someone becomes world class at something? What exactly does it take to go from being ordinary at something to attaining great heights? Is it talent or a huge amount of persistence? Outliers (subtitled The Story of …

The Best Moment of Your Day

My wife keeps a pretty simple journal. In it, she simply notes the best moment of her day (and occasionally a few other things). Usually, these notes are simple ones. She’ll talk about opening up the first day of the Advent calendar with our kids, or a nice conversation we had while the kids were …

Categories: Getting Started

Reading Tactics For Personal Growth

One topic that seems to come up time and time again in my reader mailbag columns is the concept of reading for personal growth. I hear questions all the time ranging from how to choose books that are worth reading, how to know when a book isn’t really providing answers for you, how to read …

The Simple Dollar’s Christmas Charity for 2008: Jump for Joel

Each year, I like to highlight a charity that’s near and dear to my heart and encourage readers, if they’re considering donating money to a charity during the holiday season, to look carefully at this charity. This year, my charity of choice is Jump for Joel. What’s Jump for Joel? Jump for Joel‘s mission is …

The Intelligent Investor: The Investor and Market Fluctuations

This is the ninth in a weekly series of articles providing a chapter-by-chapter in-depth “book club” reading of Benjamin Graham’s investing classic The Intelligent Investor. Warren Buffett describes this book: “I read the first edition of this book early in 1950, when I was nineteen. I thought then that it was by far the best …

Categories: Books and Reading

Gas Price Deflation

In just a few short months, the price of gas at the station I regularly use has dropped from $4.09 per gallon to $1.49 per gallon – an absolutely amazing drop. Not long ago, I spent $82 filling up my truck (which has a 20 gallon tank) – just today, I filled the tank for …

Categories: Automobile

The Backup Checking Account

Not too long ago, my wife and I combined our checking and savings accounts, mostly in an effort to make our personal finance management simpler. However, instead of simply closing out our old checking accounts, we made the active decision to leave both of these open as free basic checking accounts. We left a couple …

Internal and External Signals

Over Thanksgiving and the following weekend, my wife and children and I went back to our home town to visit our families. There were many nice meals, some long and lazy afternoons spent together visiting and playing games, and lots of getting in touch with people we hadn’t seen in years. One of the big …

The Simple Dollar Weekly Roundup: Recovery Edition

As some of you are aware, I’ve been recovering from a very nasty illness (or series of illnesses) for a while now. Some days are truly better than others with this. There are days where I feel pretty much normal, while other days I seem to completely run out of energy in the middle of …

Categories: Books and Reading

The Balance of Happiness and Saving for the Future

This past Saturday, I was a dinner guest at the home of a family friend of my wife’s parents. Over dinner, the conversation was lively and, as is often the case with my wife’s family, refreshingly frank. One major topic of discussion was one individual’s (a person we’ll call Reggie) balance of several different aspects …

Categories: Getting Started

Cutting Down Costs of After-School Activities

The routine is familiar to many parents. You have an out-of-town school or extracurricular function, whether it be a sporting event or a club meeting or something else, and after the event, your child is quite hungry, so you solve the problem quickly by stopping at the nearest restaurant and buying some quick (and fairly …

Categories: Family

Announcing My First Book, “365 Ways to Live Cheap”

What costs $7.95, makes for a great gift for all your gift exchanges, and is chock full of the good stuff you’ve come to expect from The Simple Dollar? 365 Ways to Live Cheap, that’s what. It’s my first book, due to be released in bookstores everywhere on December 17, but already available for order …

Reader Mailbag #39

Each Monday, The Simple Dollar opens up the reader mailbags and answers ten to twenty simple questions offered up by the readers on personal finance topics and many other things. Got a question? Ask it in the comments. You might also enjoy the archive of earlier reader mailbags. As usual, we’ll start things off with …

Categories: Books and Reading