The Simple Dollar Morning Roundup: Generation X Finance Edition

This week on the morning roundups (while I’m busily moving), I’m highlighting five of the best posts from five personal finance blogs that I faithfully follow. Today’s site is Generation X Finance.

12 Mistakes To Avoid With Your Retirement Savings Plan
I’ve made at least one of these mistakes in the past: timing the market. I actually thought it was dumb to invest in stocks when I first started my 401(k) in 2002 because they had been collapsing so badly for the previous two years. I should have bought in with gusto.

10 Tips For Dealing With Car Salesmen To Make Sure You Don’t Get Hosed
Interesting points, a few of which are bound to cause a bit of controversy.

Don’t Be Fooled Into Thinking An Oil Change Every 3,000 Miles Is Necessary
I wholeheartedly agree with this. The first thing you should do when you acquire a new car is read the manual carefully, especially the section(s) on maintenance. The 3,000 mile guideline is the very worst case scenario – many car models advocate a 5,000 mile oil change, for example. If you follow the maintenance schedule that’s actually in your manual, not only will it be cheaper over the long run than preconceived notions, your car will run longer.

The Top 5 Ways To Become A Millionaire
A friend of mine read this article and sarcastically said, “Uh, number six… marry a millionaire?”

10 Misconceptions About Retirement Security
The big one is saving too little. Most people vastly underestimate what they’ll actually need in retirement. You’re far better off overestimating than underestimating your needs.

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  1. Charlie says:

    An extra 2,000 miles can make a significant difference in the color and quality of the oil. I am pretty vehicle savvy and quality maintenance will save you money in the long run, and thats what it is all about. I prefer every 3,000.

    Another thing to consider is doing the oil change yourself. If you are waiting on the oil change (in most cases) it will take about the same amount of time as if you were have a mechanic do it.

    In the end the most important factor in have your car service is trusting the mechanic them self (not just the person at the desk. Paying a lower hourly rate for labor won’t save you money if they are replacing parts that don’t need to be replaced.

    Even though honest mechanics are hard to come by they do exist and are essential for saving money over the extended life of a car.

  2. lorax says:

    I’ve done a stint repairing engines, I’ve seen what never changing the oil can do. But still, I change the oil and filter every 5000 miles.

    For the ultimate advice from unbiased mechanics with a long track record, see The cartalk guys can’t be wrong!

  3. Laurie says:

    My husbands bestfriend is a mechanic and he does all the work on our cars. He has us do an oil change every 3,000 miles because he says it really is much better than waiting. He believes an oil change really is the cheapest thing you can have done on your car and it does help it to run better and last longer. My husband also drives 2 hrs a day for his commute and is still driving the same 14 year old truck and it runs great.

  4. sfninersfan says:

    Here’s what I did to get a car for $750 under invoice. I just got my 2007 Corolla last week (Jul 07).

    1. Decide which car and options you want. Get invoice price from You need to know exactly what you want and what you dont need.
    2. Email several dealers with this info including invoice price.
    3. Confirm price, availability, taxes, everything important in email.
    4. Got preapproved car loan from credit union.
    5. Once you have everything negotiated “in writing” in your email, print it, and call and meet the guy.

    This is the short version. I have more details in my blog for those interested:

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