pensive woman shopping online

“I’m bored.” As a parent, those are two of the most frustrating words that I hear from my children. With an absolute abundance of options available to them and amounts of free time that I’m often jealous of, I can scarcely believe that they’re bored. I also used to get very frustrated with my friends in college and in my professional life if they would ever suggest being bored. How could they possibly be bored? Part of the problem, of …

Continue Reading

The formula for getting out of debt isn’t rocket science, right? Cut your discretionary spending, throw your newfound cash toward your debts, and slowly whittle your balances down. Eventually, you’ll pay it all off. In a lot of ways, paying off debt is like losing weight. Put fewer calories in, move a little more, keep it up consistently, and – voila – you should theoretically shed some pounds. Unfortunately, we live in the real world, where nothing is that easy. No …

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. Real estate investing 101 2. Frugality and thinking ahead 3. TSP or Roth IRA? 4. “Bang for buck” work clothes? 5. Follow up questions about notes 6. Cheap eggs? 7. Saving for college each month 8. Inexpensive shaving besides safety razors 9. Rejected for a checking account 10. …

Continue Reading

Earlier this year, I did something I should have done years before – I bought another term life insurance policy to add to the coverage we already had. I’ve had life insurance since I was 25 years old, but our needs have changed and I was starting to feel insecure. I was child-free when I purchased our first policy, after all. Now, more than a decade later, I’m 37 with two young kids and a lot more responsibilities. I earn …

Continue Reading

Americans are predicted to spend $682 billion during the holiday shopping season this year. That’s a 4% increase from last year, and proves that our appetite for new stuff continues unabated. With all the so-called deals popping up, and the advertisers pulling out all the stops in their attempts to make us crave new products, it can be hard to resist buying at least a few things we don’t need. One way to gain some calm amidst the storm is …

Continue Reading

I recently came across a great article at Medium by Michael Simmons entitled Forget The 10,000-Hour Rule; Edison, Bezos, & Zuckerberg Follow The 10,000-Experiment Rule. The article’s chief argument is that one of the most common traits of successful people is that they’re always experimenting and trying new ways of doing things to see if the results exceed what they’re currently doing, which is decidedly different than the heavy level of routine that most people apply to their daily choices. …

Continue Reading

It doesn’t matter your financial situation: There’s almost always a better alternative to taking out a payday loan. So, if you’re facing an emergency and you need money fast, ask yourself three questions: What type of expense are you facing? What type of debt are you already in? What is your credit score? Depending on your answers, we’ve found three of the best payday loan alternatives available today. Each offers quick funding to cover your debt, much lower interest rates …

Continue Reading

Guilt. Shame. Embarrassment. Those feelings often drive us towards particular behaviors in our life, some positive and some negative. We call our mom because we feel guilty that we haven’t talked to her in a while. We skip meals because we feel shame at our overeating and our body shape. We never invite people over because we feel embarrassment at the disorderliness of our home. Maybe those things describe you or maybe they don’t, but I’m willing to bet that …

Continue Reading

Back in the mid-2000s, I spent a year or two playing online poker as a side gig. At that point, when ESPN was hyping poker to the moon with endless replays of the World Series of Poker, lots of people were jumping onto online poker sites and just throwing money into tournaments without any sense of strategy, which meant that almost anyone with a little bit of patience could make money doing this. During that period, I made quite a …

Continue Reading

If the world and the people in it were simple and sensible, hardly anyone would struggle with money. Families with debt would take rational steps to pay it off slowly, starting with debts at the highest interest rate. And since we’d all know exactly how much we earned (and thus, what we could afford), we’d spend less than that – while also saving plenty of cash for fun and the future. Unfortunately, humans are rarely rational, and modern life tends to complicate …

Continue Reading

Our Featured Contributors