Home Mortgage Rates Are Low: Should I Buy?

This past week, mortgage rates hit a new record low, bottoming out at a 3.79% average for a 30 year loan. A fifteen year mortgage

APR, APY, and Mortgage Math: A Real World Example

I have lots of readers here in the central Iowa area, so it came as no surprise to me that when I began hearing an

Why Not Walk Away from My Mortgage?

Kelli writes in: My husband and I are sitting on a thirty year mortgage (with twenty six years left to go). We still owe $330,000


Raising Deductibles to Save Money on Insurance: Does It Work?

One common, painful bill that we all face is the insurance bill. Whether you’re talking renters insurance, home insurance, or car insurance, the bill feels


A Real Life Look at the Rent or Buy Question

Howie writes in: My wife and I have been running our own home-based business for three years now. We rent and work out of a

Home Buying (and Other Big Purchases) as an Emotional Purchase

A few months before we bought our current home, my wife and I toured literally dozens of different houses, trying to find one that was

The Total Money Makeover: Pay Off the Home Mortgage

This is the tenth of twelve parts of a “book club” reading and discussion of Dave Ramsey’s The Total Money Makeover, where this book on


How to Organize a “Working Party”

Eventually, every homeowner finds a sizable home improvement project that they’d like to tackle. Perhaps the project is rebuilding a deck. Maybe it involves putting


Bigger Dreams, Smaller Houses

A few years ago, there was a very widely circulated statistic from the National Association of Home Builders about the increase in home sizes over


New Year’s Resolution Workshop #3: Save for a Down Payment

Over the next few days, we’re going to take a look at five common New Year’s resolutions that people often adopt for their finances, evaluate


Are You Insuring the Irreplaceable?

A few weeks ago, I decided to spend a few hours looking carefully at all of our insurance policies. I knew in general how most


Some Thoughts on the Small House Movement: Is It Something Worth Considering?

Over the last week, several readers have written to me with various comments, suggestions, and questions related to the so-called “small house movement.” Given that


A Guide to Winterizing Your House

Winter is approaching and in much of the United States, that means very cold temperatures, snow, and ice. Here in the upper Midwest, it gets


Twelve Tactics to Minimize Winter Heating Bills

Liz writes in with an interesting question: wonder if you have weighed the pros and cons of switching to pellet/wood stoves for heat this winter?


Is It Ethical to Walk Away on a Mortgage?

I may have just ruined a friendship from my college years by being honest. A few days ago, I received a long email from a


Update on the Flooding in Iowa … And Some Tips on Protecting Yourself

Hundreds of people have emailed me asking questions about the current flooding situation in Iowa. Has my home been affected? How bad is it really?


Does It Make Financial Sense to Consider Moving?

My recent career change means that I now have the freedom to write from wherever I happen to be. Similarly, my wife can pretty easily

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