Month: May 2014

When Can I Live Off of My Own Savings?

You’d be surprised how often I’m asked this simple question. It’s something on a lot of people’s minds, apparently. How much do I have to save up to be able to live off of my own savings? It’s impossible to come up with an exact number, but we can come up with an estimate. Figuring …

Categories: Getting Started

Five Red Flags for Bad Financial Advice

Every once in a while, I’ll find myself in an airport or somewhere else where a personal finance or investment program is on television. I’ll watch it for a bit and usually find myself frustrated because, every time I watch, I see a bunch of red flags that indicate that I should take what’s being …

The Connection Between Your Receipt and Your Life

Spend a minute and think about the last several non-essential purchases you made. Maybe you bought a magazine at the grocery store. Maybe you stopped at Starbucks for a cup of coffee. Maybe you downloaded a new album. Now, ask yourself this: In light of all of the things you already have in your life, …

Categories: Getting Started

Reader Mailbag: The Neverending To-Do List

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to five word summaries. Click on the number to jump straight down to the question. 401(k) question Channeling political dreams Elder relative scammed Rampant gambling Remembering things Using Roth for home purchase Data backup Career reboot Food buying conflicts Hamburger or steak? …

Categories: Reader Mailbag

Raising the Celebration Bar

When Sarah and I were seriously dating and, eventually, engaged to be married, we set something of a precedent of celebrating certain events in our lives. When one of us got an A in a difficult college class, we celebrated by going out for dinner and a movie. When one of us got a post-graduation …

Categories: Getting Started

Five Vital Tactics for Making Self-Employment Work

I’ve been self-employed for almost five years now. Along the way, I’ve learned a lot of things about self-employment. Originally, this article was going to be much longer, but as I found myself writing tip after tip, I discovered that most of them were either simply restating the same thing or they were very narrow, …

Categories: Getting Started

Children, Bribes, and Reverse Bribery

Have you ever had a two year old repeatedly attempt to climb out of a bathtub while you were trying to give that child a bath? You end up covered in soap and at the end of your rope. Our youngest child is well into the “terrible twos.” As anyone who’s had a child can …

Categories: Parenting

Ten Pieces of Inspiration #111

Each week, I highlight ten things each week that inspired me to greater financial, personal, and professional success. Hopefully, they will inspire you as well. Over the past week, the weather here has been brutal: a small blizzard, a batch of freezing rain, a very rapid thaw, a very hard freeze, frigid wind chills, and …

Categories: Morning Roundup

Starting Out with an Insurmountable Debt Load

This morning, we talked about the burden of caring for parents and the “sandwich generation.” This afternoon, let’s look at the burdens of younger people. Yesterday evening, I heard a fascinating story on Marketplace about how millennials are likely to be in debt their entire lives, and take some debts to their grave. There are …

Categories: Getting Started

The Sandwich Generation and You

Recently, I read a fascinating study by the Pew Research Center indicating that somewhere around one in seven adults have simultaneously provided financial assistance to a parent aged 65 and older and to one of their own children of any age in the past year. A quick overview of this study: With an aging population …

Categories: Family, Getting Started