Participation in the Get Rich Slowly video contest was down this year, which makes me a little sad, but the quality of the entries made up for it. In fact, the quality of the videos was so high this year that it was tough to pick a handful of winners.

As a reminder, contestants could share videos in two categories for this contest: Success Stories and Personal Finance Tips. The top video in each category wins $500. Ten runners-up in each category will receive a copy of my book, Your Money: The Missing Manual.

Let’s look at what your fellow readers came up with.

Success Stories

The winner of the Success Stories category is Ian, who described how he built his house without a mortgage. Ian’s was the first entry to this year’s contest, and it was one of the best. Many of you have watched this already. It’s worth watching again.

Ian paid off $35,000 in student loans and build a sustainable off-grid house. Like many of you, I want to know more about this. Ian has posted a slightly extended version of his story, but I still want additional details. I’ll pester him to see if he’s willing to write a guest post or a reader story.

Because I have a soft spot for financial success stories, I loved watching the submissions to this category. It’s inspiring to hear how other people have managed to make the most of their money. Here are the ten nine runners-up, each of whom will receive a signed copy of my book.

Tip: As you can see, there were far fewer entries to the Success Stories category than to the Money Tips category. In fact, there were fewer entries than prizes! If we do this again next year, you may want to remember that your odds of winning are much higher if you submit a story instead of a tip.

Personal Finance Tips

The Personal Finance Tips category was tougher to judge. There were many more entries here, and a lot of good stuff had to be left off the final list. Ultimately, I had to go with my gut and pick the videos that resonated with me for one reason or another.

One difficult decision was whether I should favor creativity or favor content. Plus, some of the videos offered great tips, but tips that only applied to small audiences. This year’s winner, though, managed to blend everything together. Here’s Kevin, rapping about how he saves money on cable television:

But this isn’t Kevin’s only song about money. Check out this post from his website, where you can see two of his previous personal-finance songs. (“Haven’t Made a Budget” is excellent.) And if you’re a Glee fan (like me and Kevin), check out his Christmas song.

You can read more from Kevin at his blog, Thousandaire.

As I said, it was tough narrowing the rest of the tips field to just ten winners. With so many good entries, another person might have chosen a completely different group. That said, here are the eleven runners-up in the tips category (because there were more prizes than entrants in the other category, I moved the extra prize over here):

Website Winner

Lastly, here’s the winner in the Website category. This category was open to entrants with a website they wanted to share (which accounted for about half of all submissions). This $500 prize goes to Chip from Chip’s Money Tips for How I Saved $14,000 by Avoiding the P-Word and How to Save on Car Rentals. These topics may seem a little dull, but Chip’s videos are anything but. (Chip has lots more slick videos on his blog.)


How I Saved $14,000 by Avoiding the P-Word


How to Save on Car Rentals

As in 2010, I’ll be sharing some of my favorite video submissions in the months ahead. There are some great tips here, and some great food for thought. Who knows? After watching Chip’s videos, I may even write a post about probate…

Note: If you’d like to watch more great personal-finance videos, check out the 2010 GRS video contest winners.

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