man writing a letter

Dear friend, Several years ago, I was incredibly dissatisfied with my life. I was in a great deal of debt. I lived in a tiny apartment with my wife and infant son. I had a job that was slowly changing from something I loved into something I didn’t like any more. I was unhappy in many ways. I wanted something more from my life. I felt I deserved something more. So, over the next several years, I worked incredibly hard …

Continue Reading

Over the past 10 years, my wife and I have paid off literally hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt on salaries that, except for one exceptional year, were well below $100,000 annually. We had three children as well, moved into a house that we now fully own, and currently have zero debt. We’re also well along the road to financial independence, where our investments produce enough income to pay all of our bills and expenses. Without a lot of good …

Continue Reading

You may not care much about credit card rewards or think you spend enough to justify using them, but the truth is most people could benefit from a really solid rewards card. Even if you just spend money on groceries and other basics each month – and actually, especially if you buy a lot of groceries, you could rack up a ton of easy cash back in a hurry. The best rewards credit cards for groceries let you earn anywhere …

Continue Reading

The $15 Retirement Plan

April 28 2016

Some days – in fact, many days – I spend $15 in a way that isn’t the smartest. I’ll go out to eat for lunch, perhaps. Maybe I’ll buy a book from the Kindle Store, or buy a beverage when I fill up with gas. Some days I won’t spend that extra $15, but other days I might spend even more on something unnecessary that isn’t that memorable. One day last week, I took all four of my children to …

Continue Reading
Written by

When it comes to job offers, most of us are encouraged and conditioned to follow the money. And why wouldn’t we? Adding even a few hundred bucks to your annual income can help you widen the gap between what you spend and what you earn. Plus, your starting salary can have a major impact on your long-term earnings, because that figure has a way of compounding on itself. For example, if Jim starts a position at $40,000 while Ron starts off at $50,000, and they each …

Continue Reading

Here’s a key truth I’ve come to realize about my spending habits. When I’m unhappy with myself or my life, I am much, much more prone to make spending mistakes. I’m much more likely to spend money beyond what we’ve budgeted. I’m much more likely to waste my monthly budgeted “personal spending” money on something completely dumb and wasteful. I’m much more likely to not maintain any discipline at the grocery store and come home with a bunch of stuff …

Continue Reading

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to summaries of five or fewer words. Click on the number to jump straight down to the question. 1. Credit report and mortgage payoff 2. Surgery payment options 3. Selling a car with lien 4. Selling pet insurance from home? 5. Basics of investing 6. Why emergency fund? 7. Other investment options 8. Consolidating debt 9. Social Security estimate 10. Changing financial advisors 11. Electric versus gas …

Continue Reading

When I was playing professional basketball in Israel, I would go to the grocery store every Wednesday after practice. I liked going to the huge, Costco-like store. It was one of the only places in the country I could get a particular brand of dark chocolate that I loved. The chocolate was so good, it must have had an addictive substance in it (besides caffeine and sugar). I couldn’t read the packaging, so I never confirmed this wasn’t the case; the original …

Continue Reading

Spring brings plenty of reasons to celebrate – after all, it’s all about new beginnings, and the warmer weather brings weddings and parties galore. And with school coming to an end, it’s a time when both high school and college graduates can celebrate their accomplishments and look forward to what’s to come. For college graduates specifically, this is can be one of the most exciting times in their lives. Now that they have earned a degree, they can move onto the next phase of …

Continue Reading

Over the years, I’ve answered literally thousands of questions from readers in the weekly Reader Mailbag articles here on The Simple Dollar (these great questions and answers appear every Monday morning), and many of those questions have to do with investments. Readers get excited about the possibility of getting a nice return on their money through investing, so as soon as they have a little bit of cash in hand, they’re ready to invest. They want to make their money …

Continue Reading

Our Featured Contributors

Simple Share Buttons
Simple Share Buttons