Interest Rates Don’t Matter If You Don’t Carry a Balance: Some Thought on the Cash-Only Debate

Earlier today, I read with interest the comments on this Get Rich Slowly article about Suze Orman and the “cash only” movement. In a nutshell,

The Simple Dollar Time Machine: December 12, 2009

Many newer readers of The Simple Dollar haven’t been exposed to the hundreds of great articles in the archives of the site, so this is

Does Your Energy Company Pay You for Efficiency Upgrades?

Earlier this week (just before the large blizzard hit central Iowa), our furnace went out. I took a look and couldn’t diagnose the problem myself,

Most of Us Have Never Experienced a True Economic Meltdown

My grandfather and grandmother came of age during the Great Depression. They both passed away when I was a young child (not all that much


Finding the Perfect Gift Without Spending Too Much

As I write this, I’ve spent about five hours online hunting down “perfect” gifts for various people on our Christmas shopping list. In almost every


How Much Life Insurance Do You Really Need?

I can’t tell you how often I’m contacted by readers who tell me the story of their lives, then ask the big question: how much


The Best Career Advice: Do Stuff

Yesterday, I read a really interesting article about career choices on Charlie Hoehn’s blog. A quick excerpt: I haven’t really talked about this before, but


Taking Advantage of Customer Service

Cam writes in: I got a sweater from Land’s End for my birthday with the receipt included. I wore it twice, but I just don’t

The Simple Dollar Weekly Roundup: Educational Investment Edition

Several different people have asked me what gifts I’m getting for my kids this Christmas, mostly as a source for ideas for their own children

What’s Your Motivation?

As I sit in my office and look out the window, I can see a number of people and a few pieces of construction equipment

The Big Distraction

One of the most common coping mechanisms for a serious life/money/career/personal problem is to dive into escapism. We look for something to distract ourselves from

Brand Preferences and Frugality

I’m going to start out by saying something that might get some feathers in a ruffle: everyone in the first world has brand preferences. Simply

Reader Mailbag #92

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

Review: Lifelines for Money Misfortunes

Every other Sunday, The Simple Dollar reviews a personal finance book. A couple years ago, I reviewed Stephen Pollan and Mark Levine’s earlier book Die


Personal Finance 101: What Does FDIC Insurance Really Mean?

Understanding FDIC Insurance and What It Means In the Case of Bank Failure One of the biggest things I encourage people to look for when

The Simple Dollar Time Machine: December 5, 2009

Many newer readers of The Simple Dollar haven’t been exposed to the hundreds of great articles in the archives of the site, so this is

The First Steps On How To Get Out Of Debt

A while back (has it been almost eighteen months already?), I wrote a very detailed article about coming up with a debt repayment plan. This

Some Guys Have All The Luck

I am a very lucky person. I was lucky enough to be born in the United States with (reasonably) good health. I was also lucky