This week, The Simple Dollar is conducting a detailed review of Suze Orman’s The 9 Steps to Financial Freedom. This title has appeared on countless personal finance shelves over the past decade; does the content inside hold up? We aim to answer that very question. Yesterday, we looked at the first three steps in The 9 Steps to Financial Freedom and discovered they mostly dealt with psychological self-analysis. Today, let’s look at the next three steps in a bit closer …

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#3: Buying a Home

November 15 2006

This is part of a series in which we re-evaluate Money Magazine’s “25 Rules To Grow Rich By”. One “rule” will be re-evaluated each weekday until the series concludes; you can keep tabs on the action at the 25 Rules index. How Much House Can I Afford? Rule #3: Spend no more than two and a half times your income on a home. For a down payment, it’s best to come up with at least 20%. This rule is a …

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Ten years ago, I was in the midst of my freshman year in college. I had very little concept of money or what to do with it, but at that point I still had an overall positive net worth. If only I knew then what I know now, I sometimes think to myself, particularly when I look at the financial disaster of the last ten years. So what would I tell myself if I had that chance? Here are the …

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Recently, an old friend of mine came to me quite upset. She was drowning in debt, much like I was, and she told me she didn’t know where to even start. I told her that I would be glad to counsel her, but that I didn’t want to actually look at her financial numbers because she was very uncomfortable with that. To begin the process, I started writing a list of questions that I wanted her to answer, and over …

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If you’re reading this, you’re more likely than not to have a pretty solid grip on your personal finances. You’re thinking about them regularly and you’re visiting and reading websites devoted to the topic. Getting your mindset in the right place is the foundation of personal finance; everything else just follows along with it. When I write, particularly here at The Simple Dollar, I like to believe that I’m helping people. Hopefully, you’ve been helped (or at least entertained) by …

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This week, The Simple Dollar is conducting a detailed review of Suze Orman’s The 9 Steps to Financial Freedom. This title has appeared on countless personal finance shelves over the past decade; does the content inside hold up? We aim to answer that very question. Yesterday, we looked at The 9 Steps to Financial Freedom as a whole and observed that this book focuses on laying a psychological foundation for healthy personal finance. Each step in the book seeks to …

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#2: Home Refinancing

November 14 2006

This is part of a series in which we re-evaluate Money Magazine’s “25 Rules To Grow Rich By”. One “rule” will be re-evaluated each weekday until the series concludes; you can keep tabs on the action at the 25 Rules index. When Should I Refinance My Home Rule #2: It’s worth refinancing your mortgage when you can cut your interest rate by at least one point. Rules of thumb fail miserably when evaluating a complex, multi-dimensional situation such as the …

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I have a multitude of hobbies that I enjoy, but lately I’ve been evaluating them more carefully in terms of the time spent and their cost. I spent two weeks recording the time I spent on my various hobbies and then estimated the cost of that time spent to get a “cost per hour” estimate for each of my hobbies. I had a good idea of what the comparative costs might be, but I was almost shocked to find out …

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#1: Home Renovation

November 13 2006

This post is part of a series in which we re-evaluate Money Magazine’s “25 Rules To Grow Rich By”. One “rule” will be re-evaluated each weekday until the series concludes; you can keep tabs on the action at the 25 Rules index. Rule #1: For return on investment, the best home renovation is to upgrade an old bathroom. Kitchens come in second. When determining which parts of your home to renovate and which ones to leave alone, the general consensus …

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People email me all the time asking how to get rich. They are usually underwhelmed when I tell them there is no secret and definitely no quick way to do it. There are, however some general rules and principles that hold true. The Simple Dollar devotes much time to discussing these topics. Recently, I had the opportunity to read and reflect upon an article in Money Magazine entitled 25 Rules to Grow Rich By, a brief piece outlining 25 basic …

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