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The Basics


  • Should cash be part of your emergency fund? (58 comments)

    This post is by staff writer Honey Smith. When I was in college, one of my co-workers at my part-time, on-campus job gave me a funny little gift that I use to this day. What was it? It’s called a “wallet fairy.” According to the note that came with my little talisman, you put it in your wallet and “you’ll never be out of money when you need it.” I can’t honestly say that the…

  • What’s the definition of success? (21 comments)

    This post is by staff writer Honey Smith. Just because two people hear the same word or phrase, doesn’t mean that they are conceptualizing the same thing. For example, I live in the desert, so when I say that it’s “cold,” it’s a pretty safe bet that I’m talking about something different than the person who lives in Vermont. Similarly, if I say it’s “humid,” I am probably not thinking about the same thing as…

  • The power of profit margin (40 comments)

    Note: This article is from J.D. Roth, who founded Get Rich Slowly in 2006. J.D.’s non-financial writing can be found at More Than Money, where he recently wrote about how to be happy. After six months of work, my guide about becoming the Chief Financial Officer of your own life is ready for launch! Be Your Own CFO will be released on April 22. Over the next couple of weeks at Get Rich Slowly, I’ll…

  • Reader Stories: The Notebook (Part 2) (23 comments)

    Jim, a reader of our Facebook page, shared some of his personal finance journey in Facebook comments a while back. We reached out and asked him if he would elaborate so we could share his story with the Get Rich Slowly website readers. This is Part 2. Some reader stories contain general advice; others are examples of how a GRS reader achieved financial success or failure. These stories feature folks with all levels of financial…

  • Why paying with cash hurts (and why it should) (55 comments)

    This article is by staff writer Holly Johnson. These days, my monthly budget is on the boring side. Aside from our regular spending, I’ve got a mortgage payment to fork over, groceries to buy, and utility bills to pay. Throw in some payments to my kids’ 529 plans and my SEP-IRA and I’m basically done for the month. After all of the bills are paid, the key for us is making sure that the rest…

  • Big wins: The quickest way to wealth (106 comments)

    Note: This article is from J.D. Roth, who founded Get Rich Slowly in 2006. J.D.’s non-financial writing can be found at More Than Money, where he recently wrote about the difference between tenacity and talent. There’s a divide in the world of personal finance. On one side are the folks who offer advice for scrimping and saving your way to financial success. On the other are the experts who scoff at frugality and champion big…

  • Book review: “Personal Finance for Dummies, 5th Edition” (18 comments)

    This post is by staff writer Honey Smith. There are many personal finance books and tools out there, useful to people in all stages of personal finance. I have a lot to learn before reaching financial independence, and the editorial elves thought it would be useful if I shared some of what I learn with you. My recent reviews include “FlexScore, Part I (The Book)” by Jeff Burrow, CFP, and Jason Gordo, AIF as well…

  • The one-page guide to financial independence (71 comments)

    Note: This article is from J.D. Roth, who founded Get Rich Slowly in 2006. J.D.’s non-financial writing can be found at More Than Money. This year, I learned a lot about money. I think the biggest breakthrough I had in 2013 was to connect the ideas of personal and financial independence. I spent a week in Ecuador talking with folks about this subject, and then I spent a couple of months putting my thoughts onto…

  • Money lessons from the Grinch, Scrooge, and Buddy the Elf (35 comments)

    This article is by staff writer April Dykman. Every December, my husband and I have a Christmas movie marathon. We watch as many holiday movies as we can between December 1 and December 31, which is a fun way to get into the spirit. (Here in Texas, we often have 70-degree days in December, so we have to get into the spirit somehow…) This year, I started thinking about all of the great personal finance…

  • Ask the Readers: Have you ever fallen for a scam? (43 comments)

    Every day, my dad gets his mail and reads every last thing – no matter what it is. The process can take an hour, sometimes two. There are advertisements, bills, surveys, requests from charitable organizations – and notices of winnings and awards. Tonight, he received a “notification of delivery” that declared he was the “Sole Recipient” of a 2013 Mercedes-Benz CLS automobile if he would return the “property recipient certificate” with a $20 processing and…

  • What Are the Best Financial Accounts and Tools Available? (49 comments)

    Note: This article is from J.D. Roth, who founded Get Rich Slowly in 2006. After a year off, J.D. is once again writing here at GRS. His non-financial writing can still be found at More Than Money. As a personal-finance blogger, it’s my responsibility to keep up-to-date on the latest in the financial industry. Whose advice is worth heeding? (And whose advice sucks?) What are the current tax rates? Where’s the best place to save…

  • Talk about money: The key to financial literacy? (53 comments)

    This post is from staff writer Sarah Gilbert. April’s post about financial literacy struck something in me, especially the part about the “Fallacy of Financial Literacy.” The idea here is that we are sold tools to increase our financial literacy, when in fact they only increase our knowledge of products the banks who create the tools can use to their profit and our detriment. The reason we don’t know enough to object seems to be rooted…

  • Reader Story: Finding Hope In The Bleakest Of Situations (99 comments)

    This guest post from Sam is part of the “reader stories” feature at Get Rich Slowly. Sam writes at Financial Samurai and is one of the esteemed colleagues with whom I’m exchanging ideas this weekend at the second annual Financial Blogger Conference. Some reader stories contain general advice; others are examples of how a GRS reader achieved financial success or failure. These stories feature folks with all levels of financial maturity and income. Want submit…

  • Signs of Financial Relationship Trouble? (179 comments)

    This post is by staff writer Sarah Gilbert. With my husband across the planet in Kuwait for most of the past two years, we don’t fight a lot. When we do fight, it’s about three things: what I’m doing with the kids. What things are going to be like when he comes back (for leave, or for good). And money. We started out so well? At the beginning of our relationship, I had a great…

  • Ask the Readers: What Do You Wish You’d Learned About Money? (178 comments)

    When we’re young, we think we know it all. We make decisions — financial and otherwise — based on what little we know of the world, and these decisions are colored by a relentless optimism that comes from not having to deal with the harsh realities of the world. Realities like the high cost of health insurance, steep interest rates on credit cards, and trouble finding a job. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could…

  • Ask the Readers: Basic Financial Frameworks? (81 comments)

    One common request from new GRS readers is some sort of central location where they can find a list of introductory articles to guide their progress. This is a great idea, and I’m working on it. Some of the GRS elves are working on a “Guide to Money” that will provide some of this info, but I envision a single page that collects all of the relevant articles for folks starting out. In the meantime,…

  • Four-Week Financial Boot Camp (6 comments)

    Yesterday I wrote about three 30-day challenges that can help you start forming new habits, and I recently learned about one more. MyMoneyCircles is offering a four-week personal finance boot camp, starting on January 9. The site aims to combine expert money-management advice with social circles to make success quick and easy. Leading the boot camp is The Money Coach, nationally known personal finance expert and New York Times best-selling author Lynnette Khalfani-Cox, who teaches…

  • 12 Steps to Financial Freedom in 2012 (46 comments)
  • The Best of Get Rich Slowly: 2011 Edition (10 comments)

    It’s the end of another year, which means it’s time for most of us to reflect on what happened in 2011, and where we’d like to go in 2012. I had a good year — though not without a few bumps along the way — but I’m eager to face the future too. As I always do at the end of the year, I spent some time yesterday poking through the statistics to see what…

  • Why Financial Literacy Fails (and What to Do About It) (166 comments)

    One of my resolutions since returning from Peru is that I’m going to be more responsive to requests from reporters. I’ve generally tried to weasel out of interviews in the past because they always made me uncomfortable. I’ve done enough of them now, though, that I’m able to answer questions without having a panic attack. Most interviews are pretty formulaic, really. And my message doesn’t change, so it’s easy to say things like “spend less…

  • Do What Works for You (48 comments)

    I’m writing this post in Lima, Peru, on the last day of my six-week South American odyssey. I’ve had a great time. I’ve climbed mountains, explored ancient ruins, petted llamas (and cats), mangled Spanish, and eaten more maracuyá (passion fruit) than is probably good for me. In other words, this has been a perfect vacation. But this trip wasn’t cheap. While it didn’t cost nearly as much as my trip to Africa last February, I…

  • How Did My Phone Bill Get So High?!? Why You Should Pay Attention to Your Bills (45 comments)

    This is a guest-post from Tim Ellis, author of Seattle Bubble, a blog and forum dedicated to real-estate market conditions in the Seattle area. Tim is a long-time GRS reader. Previously on GRS, Tim has written about renting vs. buying, renting in a new city, setting homebuying priorities, and gaming without breaking the bank. Recently my wife and I sat down for the first time in a couple of years to review and update our…

  • Ask the Readers: How to Cope with Financial Mistakes? (88 comments)

    Nobody’s perfect. This should be obvious, but we all tend to forget it — and often. We judge other people for their mistakes, and often we judge ourselves even more harshly. I do this too. When I do something that I know is wrong (or merely foolish), I get down on myself, which often leads me to make further mistakes. Lately, for instance, I’ve been struggling with my diet and exercise. I spent eighteen months…

  • Putting First Things First (74 comments)

    The morning is my time. Five days a week, I’m up at 5:30. I come downstairs, sip a diet soda or a cup of tea (lapsang souchong), and spend a few minutes checking e-mail and approving comments. By 5:45, I’m in my gym clothes and out the door. I walk through the quiet streets of my neighborhood, greeting the birds and the cats and the dogs. I admire the flowers. I notice all the small…

  • Why I Hate “New, Unique” Money Tips (123 comments)

    Today I’m going to rant. I get a lot of requests from reporters who want quotes for their stories about personal finance. That’s fine. I’m happy to help when possible. What bugs me, though, is that nearly every single reporter pitches her story with the same caveat: “I need tips about saving, but I don’t want the same old stuff. I need new, unique ways to save money.” sigh “New, unique ways to save money”…

  • The Financial Literacy Toolkit (15 comments)

    You know, we started April with the best of intentions. Because it’s Financial Literacy Month, all of the writers at Get Rich Slowly agreed to discuss basic money concepts. But we didn’t do it. Instead, we explored all sorts of other interesting topics. I think I know part of the problem. For a couple of years, I spent all of April focused on financial literacy. It’s a great topic. But when you tie yourself down…

  • Five Years of Get Rich Slowly (77 comments)

    Five years ago today, I started a new blog. Inspired by the success of a popular post at my personal site, I sat down to create what I thought would be the first personal-finance blog on the internet. I was wrong, of course; there were plenty of similar blogs before mine. I had no idea what I was getting myself into. In the Beginning… In April 2006, I was still deep in debt. I’d begun…

  • Setting Smart Financial Goals (24 comments)

    This post is from staff writer Sierra Black. Sierra writes about frugality, sustainable living, and raising children at Childwild.com This article is part of Financial Literacy Month at Get Rich Slowly. Goals are critical to financial success. We’ve written about them a lot here at GRS; in fact, one of J.D.’s core tenets for getting rich slowly is “The road to wealth is paved with goals.” Not all goals are created equal, however. A bad…

  • Earning, Spending, and Saving: The Building Blocks of Personal Finance (62 comments)

    Note: This article is part of Financial Literacy Month at Get Rich Slowly. A couple of weeks ago, Robert Brokamp explained how living below your means is like saving for retirement twice. On the surface, his advice was pretty conventional: The more you save today, the more you’ll have tomorrow. This is similar to a point I’ve been repeating for the past five years. Smart personal finance can be reduced to one simple equation: [WEALTH]…

  • Ask the Readers: How to Talk to Friends and Family About Money? (82 comments)

    Last spring, Andy submitted a question he hoped readers could help him with. I promised I’d post it…and then went to Alaska for ten days and forgot. Well, Andy’s a patient man. And persistent. Last week, he dropped me a line again because he’s still wondering: How do you give advice about money to your family (and friends)? Here’s Andy’s story: My family had plenty of money when I was growing up, but we never…

  • You Can Have It All (Just Not All At Once) (63 comments)

    This post is from new GRS staff writer Donna Freedman. Donna writes the Living With Less personal finance column for MSN Money, and writes about frugality and intentional living at Surviving And Thriving. Like J.D., Donna has been traveling lately — but she’s in merrie olde England, not Africa. Earlier this month, I attended a candlelit baroque concert at the historic St.-Martin-in-the-Fields Church. The Festive Orchestra of London was delightful. My seat cost £8 (about…

  • Getting Started with Estate Planning (30 comments)

    This post is from staff writer Sierra Black. Sierra writes about frugality, sustainable living, and getting her kids to eat kale at Childwild.com. Over the past few years, I’ve done a reasonable job getting on top of my personal finances. I’ve paid off credit cards. I’ve put systems in place to track and analyze my spending each month. My files are in order. I’ve learned how to communicate about money with my spouse. On any…

  • How to Avoid Common Money Mistakes (34 comments)

    This is a guest post from Laura Adams, also known as Money Girl. Adams is the author of a new book, Money Girl’s Smart Moves to Grow Rich. She also hosts the weekly Money Girl podcast over on Quick and Dirty Tips. For money resources, tips, and advice, connect with her at SmartMovesToGrowRich.com. There are some basic rules in personal finance that are so vital for success that they pertain to everyone, no matter your…

  • Underachievement and the All-or-Nothing Mindset (67 comments)

    This post is from staff writer April Dykman. There have been a slew of great articles lately on why resolutions fail, and I agree wholeheartedly with them. I’ve never had much success with resolutions myself — they always fall by the wayside after a few months, and by summer I don’t even remember that I’d set resolutions in the first place. Nevertheless, I set a lot of goals in 2010 that I reached. For example,…

  • Three Posters About Personal Finance (16 comments)

    I’m a sucker for charts and graphs. I once attended an Edward Tufte course just for kicks. Though I don’t do much with charts and graphs around GRS, I always admire the work of others. For example, last year when I shared my guide to understanding the federal budget (and the follow up on the truth about taxes), I pointed to Jess Bachman’s annual Death and Taxes poster, which attempts to visualize the entire U.S….

  • Back to Basics (84 comments)

    “You know, you’ve been spending a lot of money lately,” Kris told me the other day. I’d just returned from yet another shopping trip to REI. “I have?” I asked. “Yes,” she said. “Can’t you tell?” Actually, I guess I can. I’ve been buying relatively expensive clothes (I’ve lost 40 pounds and need to replenish my wardrobe, but I’m not doing it with thrift-store clothes as I have in the past), purchasing travel gadgets (new…

  • DIY Personal Finance: How to Take Control of Your Financial Life (30 comments)

    This story originally appeared on Boing Boing in slightly different form. It’s my favorite article I’ve ever written. I’m not a trained financial professional; I don’t have a degree in finance, and I’m not a certified financial planner. I have no formal training. I’m just an average guy who was deep in debt, and finally got fed up with his situation. After deciding to turn things around, I read dozens of financial books, and used…

  • Unemployed? Underemployed? Here’s How to Get Help (50 comments)

    For a long time, GRS readers have been requesting a list of resources for low-income families struggling to get by. I haven’t put anything together because I don’t know much about the subject. Fortunately, I know somebody who does. In this guest post, Donna Freedman lays out the nuts and bolts of finding help when you’re in financial distress. Plenty of people who once made a good living are joining the ranks of the poor…

  • A Crash Course in Financial Freedom (91 comments)

    This is a guest post from Mary Hunt, author of Debt-Proof Living. She also runs the Debt-Proof Living website, and is an inspiration to many frugal folks. Recently, I got a message from Natalie who explained that as part of a financial preparedness night, she’ll have ten minutes to speak about financial freedom. Her question to me was, “What would you talk about if you only had ten minutes?” Only ten minutes? I find it…

  • Ask the Readers: Financial Advice for an 18-Year-Old? (114 comments)

    Last week, Isaac asked Get Rich Slowly readers for advice on how to handle life after grad school. He’s about to enter the workforce and needed tips on what to do until he gets his first paycheck. Isaac was very pleased with your helpful responses. This week, we’ve got a chance to help somebody even younger than Isaac. Nico is 18, a sophomore in college, and financially clueless. He needs help! Here’s his story: I’m…

  • High Interest: How to Choose Between Checking, Savings, and CDs (52 comments)

    In a rocky economy, high interest rates are the holy grail of conservative investors, especially those who don’t want to to invest in bonds. But in this rocky economy, “high interest” hasn’t really meant much: High-interest savings accounts are returning below two percent! Get Rich Slowly readers are just like everybody else. A couple of times a week, I get e-mail from somebody looking for higher interest rates, but puzzled about where to find them….

  • The Personal-Finance Continuum (52 comments)

    This is a guest post from Paul Williams, a fee-only financial planner and the founder of Provident Planning, Inc. He regularly writes about personal finance from a Christian perspective at Provident Planning. About a year ago, there was nearly an epic battle between Ramit Sethi of I Will Teach You to Be Rich and Trent Hamm of The Simple Dollar. Ramit is firmly in the “earn more” camp of personal finance, while Trent tends to…

  • In Praise of Paying Yourself First (64 comments)

    Can you bear with me for one more labored metaphor? As I’ve mentioned a few times already, I’m in the midst of a successful fitness program. I’ve lost 20 pounds since the beginning of the year, and, more importantly, I’m exercising every day. This morning, for example, I pedaled 8-1/2 miles to my Crossfit gym; spent an hour practicing skills, doing body rows (pull-ups for people who can’t do pull-ups), and lifting weights (front squats);…

  • The Rewards of Routine Maintenance (69 comments)

    I had a great weekend. In fact, it was probably one of the best weekends I’ve had in years. I spent all day Saturday and Sunday doing chores. (Well, I watched the World Cup a little, too.) I spent nearly 16 hours doing yardwork, and I loved every minute of it. This passion for pruning may seem strange to you, but it seems even stranger to me. I generally don’t like yardwork. But here’s the…

  • Three Things the Amish Taught Me About Money (61 comments)

    Yesterday, a couple of readers pointed me to a CNN Money article about why Amish businesses don’t fail. Good timing, because today’s guest post is from the author profiled in that piece. This is a guest post from Erik Wesner, who researched the Amish for his new book Success Made Simple: An Inside Look at Why Amish Businesses Thrive. He blogs about Amish culture at Amish America. Most people associate the Amish with certain things:…

  • The Get Rich Slowly Philosophy (44 comments)

    There’s been an influx of new readers at Get Rich Slowly lately. To serve as an intro the new folks (and to celebrate the site’s fourth anniversary, and in honor of Financial Literacy Month), today I’m going to review my financial philosophy. Although we covered each of these points in turn last autumn, it’s been a while since I collected these core values in one location. Based on my research — and my experience with…

  • Finding a Financial Guru (33 comments)

    This post is from GRS staff writer April Dykman. At certain stages in your financial journey, you need a catalyst to get you to the next stage. Perhaps right now you are coming out of the zeroth stage of personal finance, deep in debt and trying to take that first step to turn things around. Maybe you are debt-free, but you have no clue how to invest in the stock market. Or maybe you’re at…

  • Reader Story: Discovering the Power of Compound Interest (37 comments)

    The reader stories I’ve been featuring on Sunday for the past three months seem to be a resounding success. Instead of being the only one to read your triumphs and failures, the rest of the GRS community can share them, too. I have no plans to expand this feature beyond Sunday, but I’m making an exception today. This short post from Jess Rundell fits with April’s “financial literacy” theme, and I think it’s worth sharing….

  • National Financial Literacy Month 2010 (10 comments)

    April is National Financial Literacy Month in the U.S. As I do every April, I’ll spend much of the next few weeks reviewing basic financial concepts. But unlike past years, I’m not going to devote every post in April to this subject. It’s important, yes, but spending an entire month on the basics gets tedious. If you have a topic you’d like me to write about during National Financial Literacy Month, please let me know….

  • What Marriage Has Taught Me About Money (112 comments)

    This is a guest post from WC, a guy in Chicago that writes about money at The Writer’s Coin. In May, I will celebrate my two-year anniversary with M, my favorite person in the world. I thought I knew a lot about everything before we got married, but now I’m wiser. So for all the newlyweds out there, or the ones thinking of walking the plank getting married, here are some things you should know….

  • How to Talk with Your Spouse About Money (73 comments)

    This is a guest post from Sierra Black, a long-time GRS reader and the author of ChildWild, a blog where she writes about frugality, sustainable living, and getting her kids to eat kale. Talking about money is one of the great taboos of our culture. I know more about my friends’ sex lives than I do about their bank statements. Many of us find it hard to discuss finances under the best circumstances. When we’re…

  • Learning to Use Money as a Tool (82 comments)

    It’s pretty clear by now that I have a different relationship with money than when I started Get Rich Slowly. I’m by no means perfect with the stuff, but I’ve become firmly entrenched in the camp that sees money as a tool. (I used to see it only as a means to instant gratification.) Here’s a tiny example. Taking a page out of Trent’s book, Kris has been on a crock pot kick lately. This…

  • It’s More Important to Be Happy Than to Be Rich (71 comments)

    This article is the final installment of a 14-part series that explored the core tenets of Get Rich Slowly. Here’s the opening paragraph from my forthcoming book, Your Money: The Missing Manual. It’s the sum of everything I’ve learned during my five year journey to get rich slowly: You don’t want to be rich — you want to be happy. Many people mistakenly believe that the former leads to the latter. While it’s certainly true…

  • Action Beats Inaction (50 comments)

    This article is the 13th of a 14-part series that explores the core tenets of Get Rich Slowly. Five years ago, I was a different man. I had no savings, retirement or otherwise. I was literally living paycheck-to-paycheck on $42,000 a year. (Meaning: I had between $0 and $20 every time I got paid.) I was over $35,000 in debt. I had a job I hated because it had no meaning in my life. I…

  • Nobody Cares More About Your Money Than You Do (44 comments)

    This article is the 12th of a 14-part series that explores the core tenets of Get Rich Slowly. I’ve read a lot of stuff lately about how scammers take advantage of other people. (Here, for example, is a brief summary of seven psychological tricks con artist use.) It’s easy to think that those who lose their money are just unfortunate suckers. That’s not always true. Often they’re folks just like me and you who get…

  • A Brief Guide to Holiday Tipping (95 comments)

    I’m getting more requests this year for holiday tipping info than ever before. For example, Nina wrote: “Can you provide some guidelines for Holiday Tipping Etiquette for the holiday season? I’m at a complete loss…” To be honest, I don’t know much about holiday tipping. It’s not something I was raised with. I covered it briefly in my guide to how much to tip, but I’m basically as in the dark as Nina is. To…

  • Financial Balance Lets You Enjoy Tomorrow AND Today (75 comments)

    This article is the 11th of a 14-part series that explores the core tenets of Get Rich Slowly. It originally appeared at Soul Shelter in a slightly different form. For more than a decade, I was buried in debt. My relationship with money was poor. I earned a decent salary, but I couldn’t seem to get ahead. I lived paycheck-to-paycheck on $40,000 a year. I’d frequently find myself standing in a store, holding a stack…

  • Failure is Okay (55 comments)

    This article is the 10th of a 14-part series that explores the core tenets of Get Rich Slowly. Yesterday, for the first time in my 40-1/2 years on this earth, I went ice skating. Initially, I was scared to try, but I eventually gave in to the taunts from my eight- and ten-year-old friends. I love roller skating and I’m not too bad at it, but the ice skating…well, it sucked. It took me eight…

  • The Perfect is the Enemy of the Good (54 comments)

    This article is the ninth of a fourteen-part series that explores the core tenets of Get Rich Slowly. You want the best — for yourself, for your spouse, for your family. You want the best car, the best house and mortgage, the best job, the best mutual funds, and the best savings account. You want things to be perfect. We all do. But perfection comes with a price. Research has shown that those who are…

  • Slow and Steady Wins the Race (56 comments)

    This article is the eighth of a fourteen-part series that explores the core tenets of Get Rich Slowly. One reason I got into financial trouble during my early twenties was that I wanted everything right now. I looked at what my parents had, and it didn’t occur to me that they’d been working their entire lives to get to that point. I wanted the same level of comfort, and I wanted it today. I wanted…

  • Do What Works for You (56 comments)

    This article is the seventh of a fourteen-part series that explores the core tenets of Get Rich Slowly. I struggled with debt for over a decade. I made several attempts to tackle the trouble, but nothing seemed to work. Compulsive spending was part of the problem — I bought anything I wanted, even if I couldn’t afford it — but there was another factor, too. Everything I’d read gave the same advice for debt reduction:…

  • The Personal Finance Hour, Episode 26: Financial Rules of Thumb (9 comments)

    On today’s episode of The Personal Finance Hour, I’ll join Jim from Bargaineering to discuss financial rules of thumb. Rules of thumb are no substitute for proper analysis, but they can be an excellent way to make general plans. Today we’ll talk about things like: When should you repair an appliance and when should you buy new? When should you refinance your house? How much of your investments should be in stocks? This show will…

  • Large Amounts Matter Too (45 comments)

    This article is the sixth of a fourteen-part series that explores the core tenets of Get Rich Slowly. Last winter, Kris and I re-financed our mortgage. In one fell swoop, we trimmed our monthly payments for principal and interest from $1386.60 to $1137.69, boosting our cash flow by $248.91 per month. If we had consumer debt, that’s $248.91 per month we have could used for our debt snowball. It’s $248.91 per month we could stick…

  • How to Get Your Free Credit Report Online: A Step-by-Step Guide (49 comments)

    This article is by GRS staff writer Adam Baker. The statistics on credit reports errors are staggering. A 2004 U.S. PIRG survey showed that 79% of credit reports contained either serious errors or other mistakes of some kind. 79%? Seriously? How can that be? I guess it doesn’t help that as of 2006, 27% of adults had never checked their report for errors. Not once. Ever. vslide_var1 = ‘vslide-free-credit-report-step’; Getting your hands on a free…

  • Small Amounts Matter (60 comments)

    This article is the fifth of a fourteen-part series that explores the core tenets of Get Rich Slowly. Getting started with smart personal finance isn’t always easy. It’s one thing to read about the steps you should take, but it’s another thing to actually do them. Your debt is so overwhelming or your saving goals so lofty that you begin to believe that the only way you’ll ever get where you want to be is…

  • Pay Yourself First (57 comments)

    This article is the fourth of a fourteen-part series that explores the core tenets of Get Rich Slowly. It’s also a part of National Save for Retirement Week. One of the oldest rules of personal finance is the simple admonition to pay yourself first. All the money books tell you to do it. All the personal finance blogs say it, too. Even your parents have given you the same advice. But it’s hard. That money…

  • Spend Less Than You Earn (50 comments)

    This is the third of a fourteen-part series that explores the core tenets of Get Rich Slowly. “Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.” — Charles Dickens, David Copperfield When people ask me for my top tip on personal finance, they’re often disappointed. My top tip isn’t sexy. “To get out of debt and to build wealth,”…

  • Minimalist Money: 6 Steps to Simplify Your Financial Life (98 comments)

    This is a guest post from Leo Babauta of the simplicity blog, Zen Habits. Leo also recently started a new blog about minimalism, mnmlist.com. Finances are one of the most complicated things in many people’s lives … and yet, they don’t have to be. With a little effort, you can simplify your financial life and end the money headaches most people face. I consider myself a minimalist. As such, I shy from all kinds of…

  • Money is More About Mind Than It Is About Math (87 comments)

    This is the first of a fourteen-part series that explores the core tenets of Get Rich Slowly. I had a group of old high-school friends over to the house last weekend. As the daylight faded and the cool of the evening settled, we sat around a blazing fire talking about life. We shared the good things we’ve done over the past twenty years — and we shared the bad. Inevitably, the conversation turned to money….

  • What Made You Care About Money? (49 comments)

    This is a guest post from Robert Brokamp of The Motley Fool. Robert is a Certified Financial Planner and the advisor for The Motley Fool’s Rule Your Retirement service. He contributes one new article to Get Rich Slowly every two weeks. I’ve discovered the secret to becoming financially responsible: Go into serious debt. Or get married, divorced, or pregnant. And reading a good book helps. At least, that’s what you told me. A few weeks…

  • The 1-2-3 Money Plan (36 comments)

    For years, people who know me well have been encouraging me to read Michael Chabon’s The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay. “You’ll love it,” they’d tell me. “A lot of it is about comic books.” My friends were right: I’m the target audience for this book. Here it is late Wednesday night, and I’ve spent the past few hours unable to put it down. I had to finish. But Kavalier & Clay isn’t the…

  • Compound Interest: One Percent Can Make All the Difference (43 comments)

    How many of you consider the effects of compound interest (or “compound returns”, if you prefer) when you make financial decisions? I mention the concept from time-to-time — and I’ve even devoted whole articles to the extraordinary power of compound interest — but I don’t know if others keep the notion in mind when they work with their finances. When I was younger, when I was struggling with money, I only had a fuzzy notion…

  • The Seven Enemies of Financial Success (55 comments)

    Earlier today, I wrote about Brett Wilder’s The Quiet Millionaire. It’s different than most personal finance books I’ve read. It’s targeted at those who are further along their financial journeys rather than at those just starting out. Still, there are bits and pieces in The Quiet Millionaire that are applicable to everyone. I particularly liked Wilder’s list of the seven enemies to financial success (which is my phrase, not his). Over the past few weeks,…

  • A Small Mistake (129 comments)

    Important note: Despite what the credit card company told me, and despite my own mis-information, this story below apparently does NOT relate to two-cycle billing. Instead, my frustration stems from the way some credit card companies handle their grace periods. Thanks for all of the commenters who pointed out the error. Here’s a follow-up to this situation. For almost a decade, I refused to use a personal credit card. I knew that I couldn’t control…

  • What We Wish We Knew When We Were Younger (124 comments)

    Kris called me at seven o’clock last night, just as I was sitting down to write the Friday “Ask the Readers” post. I was sorting through this week’s questions when the phone rang. “Are you busy?” she asked. “Can you do me favor?” “Maybe,” I said. “It depends on what it is.” “Ryan’s car broke down,” Kris said. “He’s stranded here at the lab and can’t get home. Can you give him a ride across…

  • How Money-Transfer Scams Work (45 comments)

    I’ve been half-heartedly looking at bicycles lately. Part of me pines for a new city bike, but the rational side of my brain knows that I have two decent bikes already. Still, I’ve killed a lot of time by paging through the Craigslist bike ads. At the top of every ad is the following warning about scams: I’ve always wondered exactly how these scams work, but I’ve never taken the time to look it up….

  • The Ascent of Money (31 comments)

    Beginning tonight, public television stations in the United States will broadcast a four-part series from economist and historian Niall Ferguson, The Ascent of Money. This is an expanded version of a documentary that first aired in January. Here’s a description of The Ascent of Money from the official site: For millions of people, the recession has generated a thirst for knowledge about how our global economic system really works, especially when so many financial experts…

  • Why Pursue Financial Freedom? (58 comments)

    Your financial choices do not stand in isolation. They have a cumulative effect. As you pay off debt, as you save for retirement, as you reduce your spending, you are creating a snowball of right action. Or, to use a better metaphor, each smart choice you make creates ripples throughout your life. As you work toward financial freedom, you make it easier for yourself to accomplish other goals. With the help of my Twitter followers,…

  • The First Three Steps to Financial Freedom (54 comments)

    The hardest part of money management is just getting started. Once you have some momentum, it’s easier to make the right choices. Kay has been reading personal finance blogs for almost a year now, and she knows that she needs to make some changes, but she doesn’t know how to begin. She writes: I want to get serious about being good with my money, but I don’t know where to start. I never developed good…

  • The Wisdom of My Father (50 comments)

    This is a guest post from Ann Zerkle, a Get Rich Slowly lurker, and the founder of Heroes of Capitalism. As the daughter of a truck driver and stay-at-home mom, my family lived very frugally (and very happily). As an adult, I see the wisdom in the frugality of my parents. Below are the frugal ideas my father always espoused. Work smart, not hard. My dad believed in hard work. He constantly put in 60…

  • What Makes Us Tick: A Short Film About How the Stock Market Works (from 1952) (15 comments)

    It’s been several months since I’ve discovered a new money movie to share with you. I love these things, but I’ve exhausted most of my sources for Public Domain material. However, while browsing the Prelinger Archives again the other day, I discovered a little gem that had slipped my notice before: “What Makes Us Tick”, a short cartoon from 1952 that describes how the stock market works. Note: The Prelinger Archives offer hours of amusement…

  • Credit Union Service Centers Provide Shared Branching (30 comments)

    Note: Oops. I accidentally had comments closed on this post. Not even sure how that happened. They’re on now. Chris M. sent me e-mail last week to share some thoughts on rewards checking and on credit unions. I’m a fan of both. In his message, Chris offered a handy tip for those of us who use credit unions instead of banks: In reviewing your past posts, I realized that you might not know about something…

  • Un-Broke: What You Need to Know About Money (40 comments)

    I don’t watch much television; I’m more of a books and magazines and newspapers kind of guy. But I’ll make an exception this Friday. ABC will be broadcasting a special entitled Un-Broke: What You Need to Know About Money. According to the website: Schools teach us almost everything, but not “Money 101.” For the basics on finance, turn to UN-BROKE: What You Need to Know About Money. It’s an unconventional look at the fundamentals of…

  • Don’t Buy Stuff You Cannot Afford (25 comments)

    One of the best things about running this site is reviewing all of the reader submissions. You folks send me tons of links and story ideas. But in the past three years, there’s one item that you have submitted more than any other. Every month several people forward a Saturday Night Live skit called “Don’t Buy Stuff You Cannot Afford”. I’ve never been able to share this video on Get Rich Slowly, though, because it’s…

  • The Fundamentals of Personal Financial Planning (20 comments)

    Last week I shared Investing for Your Future, a fantastic 11-week home-study course for beginning investors with small dollar amounts to invest. This week I found a similar resource from UC Irvine, which offers a free online class in the fundamentals of personal financial planning. According to the course introduction: This course is not intended to replace the professional financial planner, but to help to make the general public better consumers of financial planning advice….

  • The Financial Literacy Compendium (12 comments)

    It’s April once again, which means it’s also Financial Literacy Month in the United States. Because basic financial literacy is imperative, Get Rich Slowly will devote the next few weeks to covering the fundamentals of personal finance. If you have a topic you’d like me to write about, please let me know. To begin, however, here’s my annual collection of financial literacy resources I’ve provided in the past. Get Rich Slowly This site regularly features…

  • What Fourth-Graders “Know” About Money (50 comments)

    Financial Literacy Month begins today. What better way to kick things off than with a story from the trenches? This is a guest post from Chett Daniel, who writes about improving your life through personal fitness and personal finance at 5k5k.org. Every day when I go to work, I have a chance to influence the lives of children. I left a well-paying corporate job nearly two years ago, taking a 50% cut in pay to…

  • My Financial Infrastructure (80 comments)

    While preparing for the first episode of The Personal Finance Hour yesterday, I was browsing Jim’s archives over at Bargaineering. I stumbled upon an old post about creating a financial network map: A map of Jim’s financial network Mapping your financial infrastructure is a mundane task. It’s not exciting. It’s not likely to save you big bucks. Instead, it’s the sort of Big Picture exercise that each of us ought to perform from time-to-time just…

  • Book Review: I Will Teach You to Be Rich (40 comments)

    Today I am reviewing a new book written by a colleague. As you read this review, please remember that I am friends with author. For comparison, you can see my reviews of two other books by friends here and here. I’m often asked to recommend personal-finance books for young adults. I’ve read a few (and have more in my to-read stack), but there are only two that I promote in my presentations to students: Debt…

  • Financial Commandments from Kiplinger’s (27 comments)

    Earlier this year, Erin Burt from Kiplinger’s Personal Finance published a pair of related columns describing smart money moves for various stages of life. In “10 Financial Commandments for Your 20s”, Burt offers advice for those who are just getting started on their own. Among her mandates: plan ahead, live within your means, make saving a habit, and start investing. I think one of her best suggestions comes in commandment seven, “have a marketable skill”:…

  • Snake-Oil Salesmen? Debating the Role of the Financial Media (74 comments)

    Jim Cramer is the manic host of CNBC’s Mad Money, a television show that offers stock recommendations and investment advice. Jon Stewart is the host of Comedy Central’s satirical news program, The Daily Show. Cramer and Stewart engaged in a war of words recently, which came to a head last Thursday night when Cramer appeared on Stewart’s program. Stewart’s complaint is that CNBC doesn’t offer financial news and advice so much as it acts as…

  • 9 Methods for Mastering Your Money (75 comments)

    2008 was a miserable year for money. The stock market tumbled, unemployment soared, the housing market continued to crumble, and retirement savings shriveled away. Whew! Here’s hoping 2009 will be better! But hope can only do so much. Hope cannot bring change. Action brings change. If one of your goals for 2009 is to take control of your money (instead of letting it keep control of you), this crash course in financial basics can help…

  • The Best of Get Rich Slowly (2008 Edition) (16 comments)

    The past ten months have been amazing: I quit my job at the family box factory at the beginning of March to become a full-time writer. Since then, I’ve worked harder than I ever have in my life. I’ve had a lot of fun, but I’ve also learned a lot about myself, and about running a business. Today I’d like to share some of the best articles from the past twelve months. I looked at…

  • Personal Finance 101: How to Pay Your Utility Bills (17 comments)

    J.D. is on vacation. This is a guest post from Wanda, who wrote to tell me that a shocking number of people have trouble paying their utility bills correctly. How do you pay your bills? My father taught me to pay them on time and in full. That’s great advice, but there is so much more to correctly paying your bills. As a small town municipal employee, I have assisted people with their water bills…

  • Reader Survey: Which Personal-Finance Books Should I Review? (86 comments)

    My personal-finance library is growing at an alarming rate. Authors and publishers send me preview copies of their works. I pick up cheap copies of old books at thrift stores. And, it’s true, Get Rich Slowly (the company) actually buys new books about personal finance and success. As a result, I have a stack of unread books, and not enough time to read them all. Worse, I can’t decide which to read first. I thought…

  • Investing 101: An Introduction to Index Funds and Passive Investing (57 comments)

    This is a guest post from ABCs of Investing, a new site for novice investors. ABCs of Investing offers two short and simple investing posts each week. Personal finance bloggers are vocal proponents of passive investing in index funds and exchange-traded funds. But not everyone knows much about these, and not a lot of bloggers do a good job of explaining the basics of passive investing. This post is intended to explain the basics —…

  • The Best of Get Rich Slowly: November 2008 (6 comments)

    November was a great month for me. I took huge strides in my life as a “professional” blogger. I made several local television appearances, gave a presentation at the public library, and signed with a literary agent. I also took steps to make the blog sustainable in the long term. Instead of striving for two posts a day and then feeling like a failure when I missed, I changed my aim for one solid post…

  • You Can’t Always Get What You Want: The Dark Side of Personal Finance (127 comments)

    I drove down to clean the moss of the roof of my mother’s house last week. I spent several hours on top of the house with my cousin Nick, scraping and hosing and blowing away years of green growth. We chatted as we worked. I told him that I was going to speak with a literary agent on the following day, and that I hoped I might soon have a book deal. “How does that…

  • Bookkeeping and You: Personal-Finance Propaganda from 1947 (28 comments)

    “Let’s look in on a high-school bookkeeping class,” begins this short film from 1947. And when we do, we’re introduced to a variety of students who have decided that bookkeeping is just what they need to get ahead in life. This film argues that bookkeeping knowledge is important for everyone. It’s like a propaganda piece for the subject. Bookkeeping is useful, it says, for a variety of reasons: If you plan to go into business….

  • Do the Tools of Personal Finance Actually Work? (23 comments)

    New visitors to Get Rich Slowly are sometimes skeptical. “Do the things you write about actually work?” they ask.  Absolutely they work.  They work financially, but many of them also work psychologically. That last bit may be the most important. I frequently say that money is “more about mind than it is about math”, and I mean it. We all know the basic arithmetic behind money management — it’s the psychological stuff that gets in…

  • A Brief Note on Political Ads (33 comments)

    I’m beginning to get e-mail complaining about various political ads on this site. These ads are being served automatically by Google and do not necessarily reflect my beliefs or the beliefs of this blog. In fact, I have no control over them. I could block individual ads, but that requires about 24 hours to take effect. I could remove all ads for the next day, but that seems silly. Instead, I ask that you just…

  • The Best of Get Rich Slowly: October 2008 (2 comments)

    October has ended, and you know what that means: the holiday advertising and media saturation are about to begin. I’ve shared a couple of Christmas questions already, and plan to feature a few more stories in the next few weeks. If you have questions or suggestions, please let me know. Meanwhile, here are some of the best posts at GRS from the past month: October 2nd: Drama in Real Life: Foreclosure! October 6th: How do…

  • Creating a Will: It’s Not as Scary as You Might Think (42 comments)

    My friend Sparky called the other day. We chatted about work, we chatted about the economy, and we chatted about investing. We also chatted about our families. We talked about my mother and her health problems, and then we talked about his parents and their health problems. “I can’t believe they haven’t updated their wills,” said Sparky. “What?” I said. “Are you kidding me? How old are they?” “They’re both about 65,” he said. “Maybe…

  • What is Money? A Basic Economics Lesson from 1947 (19 comments)

    I was pleased recently to discover another handful of short films about financial topics from the 1940s and 1950s. I’ll share them over the next few months, starting with this timely piece from 1947. With the recent economic turmoil in the U.S., it’s worthwhile to answer the question: What is money? This ten-minute film takes its structure by following a single $5 bill as it circulates from person to person, being used in a variety…

  • The Millionaire Quiz (46 comments)

    How much do you know about millionaires? Kris recently had dinner with her friend Linda, who is a high school social studies teacher. As they ate, Linda bemoaned the lack of personal finance and economics education in the United States. She mentioned that every year she gives her economics students a short “Millionaire Quiz” to see just how much they know about wealth and where it comes from. They do poorly at it, which surprises…

  • Net Worth: The Most Important Number in Personal Finance? (50 comments)

    Do you know your net worth? Your net worth is a snapshot of your financial life at one moment in time, a single number representing your financial health. It’s the total of everything you’ve earned and spent until today. In The Wall Street Journal Complete Personal Finance Guidebook, Jeff Opdyke writes: Knowing your net worth is important…if only for one reason: It forces you to interact with your financial life, keeping you in touch with…

  • The Sunk-Cost Fallacy: Good Money After Bad (97 comments)

    My mother spent three weeks in the hospital in August. Her extended stay affected me in lots of little ways I couldn’t anticipate. To escape my daily worries, I went searching for a little solace — I re-activated my World of Warcraft account. World of Warcraft is a subscription-based online computer game. As a player, you become immersed in a virtual fantasy world, interacting with thousands of other players from around the globe. It’s great…

  • How to Win the Lottery (128 comments)

    Ray Otero cannot buy a break. For the past three years, he’s spent $500 to $700 a week playing the lottery, but he’s only won big a few times: $1,000 once and $2,000 twice. Still he keeps playing. He’s sure his luck is bound to change. Otero’s story, told in a recent New York Times article, is simultaneously funny, poignant, and exasperating. This New York City building superintendent simply wants the “easy life” for his…

  • Leverage, Luck, and Living Well: A Conversation with Financial Columnist Scott Burns (16 comments)

    During the first week of July, I had the privilege to chat with financial author Scott Burns. What was intended to be a brief interview about his new book, Spend ’til the End [my review] lasted for nearly two hours. Burns was fascinating. It has taken weeks to edit this conversation into something digestible for the web. It’s still quite long, but I hope it’s as interesting to you as it is to me. You…

  • The Best Advice I Ever Got: 40 Great Money Tips (28 comments)

    CNNMoney has posted a gallery of money tips from 40 “great minds”, ranging from Derek Jeter to Tim Ferriss to Burton Malkiel. Each participant provided an anecdote about the best piece of financial advice they ever received. I’ve listed some of the highlights below. Remember: this is the best advice given to these people. It’s the financial advice they feel has made the biggest difference in their lives. Dean Kamen, Segway inventor: “Find work in…

  • Back to Basics: A Guide to Traditional Skills (39 comments)

    Based on reader suggestions, Kris and I made a trip to Costco on Friday to buy bulk yeast and a fifty-pound bag of bread flour. (We’re serious about this whole home-made bread thing.) While I waited for Kris to pick up some other groceries, I leafed through Back to Basics: A Complete Guide to Traditional Skills edited by Abigail R. Gehring. “Wow,” I thought. “I am the target audience for this book.” I bought it….

  • Financial Advice from My Father (When I Was Nineteen) (44 comments)

    Today is Father’s Day in many countries, including the United States. While sorting some old letters and photos recently, I stumbled across a letter my dad wrote to me during my sophomore year of college. This is my father’s financial advice to me when I was nineteen years old. I haven’t attempted to edit — any misspellings are his. J.D.’s Points to Ponder Warning — Make sure you read them all. There may be some…

  • The New Reader’s Guide to Get Rich Slowly (40 comments)

    Get Rich Slowly — recently named most inspiring money blog by Money magazine — is devoted to sensible personal finance. You will not find any get-rich-quick schemes here. Nor will you find multi-level marketing fads or hot stock tips. I am not pitching any product or book. Instead, you’ll find daily information about personal finance and related topics. I share stories about debt elimination, saving money, and practical investing. I also post occasional reviews of…

  • What’s the Reason for Saving and Investing? (35 comments)

    Yesterday, in his final piece for The Wall Street Journal, Jonathan Clements shared what he learned from writing 1,008 columns about personal finance in 26 years. What is the reason for all this saving and investing? The short answer is, you save now so you can spend later. But what will you spend your money on? People dream of endless leisure and bountiful possessions. Unfortunately, after a few months, endless leisure often seems like endless…

  • The Extraordinary Power of Compound Interest (92 comments)

    If you’re young, you may not think you need to open a retirement account. You probably think it’s easier to worry about it five years from now. Or ten. You’re wrong. No matter what your age, now is the time to begin saving for retirement. In The Automatic Millionaire, David Bach writes, “The single biggest investment mistake you can make [is] not using your [retirement] plan and not maxing it out.” Saving is the key…

  • When the Going Gets Tough, Get Back to the Basics (29 comments)

    I’ve posted several stories about national economic woe recently. In real life, I’ve had conversations with a few of my friends about the mortgage mess, about recession and a possible bear market, and about the nature of poverty. The economy is sour in the United States (and elsewhere in the world), and this frightens many people. I don’t buy in to the forecasts of economic doom. I’m an optimist. Things may get rough, but they’ve…

  • The Key to Wealth is Being Satisfied with What You Already Have (77 comments)

    For the past few weeks, I’ve been making sales calls with David, my replacement at the box factory. We’re visiting existing customers to explain the transition. Most of my clients know that I’m part-owner in the family business. “Why are you leaving?” they want to know. “What are you going to do now?” “I’m going to write,” I say. “About what?” some of them ask. “Personal finance,” I say, and that’s usually the end of…

  • The Wise Use of Credit: Money Lessons from 1960 (18 comments)

    “To develop a better understanding of the wise use of credit, let’s spend a few minutes with a certain individual we’ll call Mr. Money.” Here’s another short video from Sutherland Educational Films designed to teach young adults about their finances. In this installment, Mr. Money teaches John and Judy about the ins and outs of credit. To earn credit, first you have to develop your character. You have to be trustworthy. Second, you have to…

  • The Power of Positive Cash Flow (42 comments)

    When I lived paycheck-to-paycheck, there never seemed to be enough money to go around. I was perpetually $50 or $100 short of what I needed. Because I was spending more than I earned, I fell further behind every month. I had a negative cash flow, which led to more debt, which put me deeper in the hole. It is mathematically impossible to get ahead with a negative cash flow — in order to save money,…

  • How to Stop Fighting With Your Spouse About Money (57 comments)

    This is a guest post from GLBL, who writes about personal finance at Gather Little by Little. Many sources cite money as the number one cause of marital strife. Some of you probably know this from first-hand experience. I can relate, too. My wife and I are very close, but money has always been a touchy subject, and unfortunately has led to a more than a few “disagreements”. Last year, we decided to get control…

  • Car Trouble: A Real-Life Lesson in the Value of an Emergency Fund (155 comments)

    I drove south yesterday morning to meet with Mac, my partner at Get Fit Slowly. Between Portland and Salem, a warning light came on in my Ford Focus — the temperature gauge had risen into the red. I pulled to the side of the road, called to cancel our meeting, and cursed fate. I hate my car. After the engine cooled, I nursed the vehicle to the local Ford dealership. I gave them the keys,…

  • Letter to a Godchild: Passing on Financial Wisdom (42 comments)

    This is a guest post from Suzanne S. I’m English and live in California. My goddaughter recently graduated in England (with a degree in Art). I’m one of those who regrets not starting off with good financial habits when I was younger. I thought I would write her a letter giving her the advice that I wish someone had given me when I graduated. I would love the perspective from Get Rich Slowly readers on…

  • Why You SHOULDN’T Prepay Your Monthly Bills (61 comments)

    Earlier today I wrote that I like to prepay my monthly bills. I acknowledged that some people might think this was dumb, but that I liked to do it anyhow. It’s not often that I share something with which GRS readers vehemently disagree. This is one of those rare cases. Because there’s so much opposition to this idea, and because each of these points is valid, I’ve combed the comments to compile a list of…

  • Basic Personal Finance: Know How Your Accounts Work (30 comments)

    Sometimes it’s the easy stuff that catches us off guard. We spend so much time trying to get the big stuff right, that we forget about the basics. I’ve had a couple experiences lately that left me feeling a little silly for missing the obvious. Hassles with the “no hassles” card This past summer, I signed up for my first personal credit card in nearly a decade. I went over all the legal stuff carefully…

  • A Credit Card is Not an Emergency Fund (84 comments)

    Sometimes I wonder: Have I always had personal finance conversations all the time? I don’t often initiate them, but money seems to be a constant topic, even when people are unaware that I write about it every day. Just this morning, for example, I met with a fellow who needs some boxes to ship his woodworking products. (By day I am the sales force for my family’s small box factory.) My customer gave me a…

  • Understanding the Seven Habits of Wealth (38 comments)

    This is a guest post from Dough Roller, a Washington D.C. blogger who writes about building wealth, one dollar at a time. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit. — Aristotle We tend to define our lives by the big events: graduation, marriage, children, a big promotion, retirement. What often gets neglected are the little things we do every day, the little things that make the big…

  • What is Financial Security? (136 comments)

    This is a guest-post by Michael Mihalik, author of Debt is Slavery (and 9 Other Things I Wish My Dad Had Taught Me About Money). Two commenters on this post will win free copies of his book. Read on for details! Wouldn’t it be great to be financially secure — to never have to worry about money? What would it take to get there? In fact, what exactly is financial security? Ask ten people to…

  • Smart and Simple Financial Strategies for Busy People (7 comments)

    This guest post is from Suzanne S. Jane Bryant Quinn has been a personal finance writer for decades. She currently writes for Newsweek and Good Housekeeping. She also wrote a doorstopper of a personal finance tome called Making the Most of Your Money. That book was just too intimidating for me. I dipped into some chapters but really didn’t do it justice. Plus, it is now a little outdated in some areas since it was…

  • When a Saver and a Spender Say “I Do” (25 comments)

    This guest post is from Sara Wallace, a member at Debt Management Talk. When my husband and I got married, we brought a lot more to our marriage than ourselves. Financially, I brought my entire life savings — while he brought just about the same amount in credit card debt. “So what?” you say. My savings meant we could clean up his debt and start our marriage debt free — not bad! While it’s true…

  • Money Mistakes: That Old Black Magic (46 comments)

    I make a point of sharing my financial success stories with you — it’s only fair that I confess when I make mistakes. I’ve been doing so well for so long, that I’d forgotten what it’s like to “fall off the wagon”. Yet that’s exactly what’s happened since I returned from vacation. On my first day back at work, Nick told me, “There’s a new set of Magic cards out.” During my bleakest financial period,…

  • How I Escaped from Living Paycheck-to-Paycheck (46 comments)

    Many of you wrote last week to say that I was too harsh on my friend Gillian, the woman with the “I can’t” attitude. Perhaps you’re right — I may have given up too early. I used to live like she does, and if I can turn it around, anyone can. For a decade I was a deficit spender. I spent more than I earned. I used credit cards to fund a lifestyle that was…

  • A Working Woman’s Guide to Financial Security (10 comments)

    Sometimes you can find personal finance tools in the most unlikely places. The University of Illinois Extension Service offers a collection of consumer money resources, including tips for thrifty living, credit card smarts fact sheets, and a guide to consumer and family economics. I was most impressed with A Working Woman’s Guide to Financial Security. This series of planning guides has been designed to help women of all ages develop skills they need in order…

  • The Money Savvy Pig: A Piggy Bank for the 21st Century (28 comments)

    One of the best things parents can do to prepare their children for the Real World™ is to teach them basic financial skills. A kid who knows how to save is a kid who has a jump-start on life. Money Savvy Generation is a company designed to “help kids get smart about money”. Founder Susan Beacham writes: I am the mother of two girls. I was also a private banker, who repeatedly saw in my…

  • Tip and Tricks to Ensure You Track Your Money? (32 comments)

    One of my friends has decided to take a closer look at his personal finances. He and his wife make good money, but they live paycheck-to-paycheck. They spend whatever they have. It’s only since starting to track his expenses in Quicken that he’s discovered, for example, that each month he’s spending over a thousand dollars on groceries. This realization has prompted him to create a budget. Now he has some financial goals, and is trying…

  • Understanding Money (5 comments)

    The Australian Government provides a money-management site that is useful to people around the world. Understanding Money encourages readers to adopt a three-point approach to their finances: Prepare a budget plan - work out how much you earn and what you spend it on, to help you see where you could make changes. Set some financial goals - they don’t have to be big, but they’ll help you see what you could gain by being better with…

  • Saving and Investing: 5 Popular Misconceptions (18 comments)

    This is part twenty in a series that has occupied the “money hacks” slot at Get Rich Slowly during April, which is National Financial Literacy Month. Michael Fischer’s series on Saving and Investing ends today with a look at five popular misconceptions about money. Even if you haven’t watched any of his other videos, I urge you to watch these. Here Michael explains why it is so important for each of us to understand basic…

  • Saving and Investing: Getting Started (4 comments)

    This is part nineteen in a series that will occupy the “money hacks” slot at Get Rich Slowly during April, which is National Financial Literacy Month. Michael intended today’s video to be the final one in the series. Here he ties everything together and explains how we can use the things he’s taught to make better decisions about saving and investing: Getting started (7:18) I have nothing to add — Michael does a good job…

  • Saving and Investing: The Impact of Time (2 comments)

    This is part sixteen in a series that will occupy the “money hacks” slot at Get Rich Slowly during April, which is National Financial Literacy Month. During the first fifteen days of this video series, Michael Fischer explained the basics of saving and investing, introducing us to stocks, bonds, and compound returns. This week he pulls this information together to show how these concepts affect our investment decisions and our use of credit. He begins…

  • The Perfect is the Enemy of the Good (24 comments)

    “I’m going for a walk,” I announced to Kris at about 10:30 Saturday morning. Though it was cool and rainy, I needed some exercise. It’s been a while since I made my three-mile stroll through the neighborhood. But before I could get out the door, I decided to change into warmer clothes. I went upstairs and rummaged around to find the perfect pair of pants. I sorted through my sweatshirts, looking for my favorite. When…

  • Saving and Investing: An Introduction to Dollar-Cost Averaging (12 comments)

    This is part fifteen in a series that will occupy the “money hacks” slot at Get Rich Slowly during April, which is National Financial Literacy Month. The three videos scheduled for today were going to cover hedge funds. After watching them, however, I’ve decided they’re not necessary for basic financial literacy. Unless I’ve missed something, hedge funds are targeted primarily at institutional investors. If you want to learn more about them, you can visit the…

  • Saving and Investing: Types of Mutual Funds (4 comments)

    This is part thirteen in a series that will occupy the “money hacks” slot at Get Rich Slowly during April, which is National Financial Literacy Month. Yesterday Michael Fischer explained how mutual funds allow individual investors to pool money in order to achieve goals that would otherwise be out of their reach. Today he looks at different kinds of mutual funds: Types of mutual funds (2:10) There are several thousand mutual funds available in the…

  • Saving and Investing: What is a Mutual Fund? (6 comments)

    This is part twelve in a series that will occupy the “money hacks” slot at Get Rich Slowly during April, which is National Financial Literacy Month. As an individual investor, you can build a portfolio of stocks and bonds, but to do so properly requires time and effort. For most people, it makes more sense to invest in mutual funds. But what is a mutual fund? Michael Fischer explains: What is a mutual fund? (3:44)…

  • Saving and Investing: What is a Stock Market Index? (6 comments)

    This is part ten in a series that will occupy the “money hacks” slot at Get Rich Slowly during April, which is National Financial Literacy Month. Have you ever wondered what all of those numbers on the nightly business report actually mean? Michael Fischer explains: What is a stock market index? (3:44) Just as you cannot accurately gauge the health of a garden from the growth of a single plant, you cannot gauge the health…

  • Saving and Investing: What is a Stock? (4 comments)

    This is part nine in a series that will occupy the “money hacks” slot at Get Rich Slowly during April, which is National Financial Literacy Month. Yesterday we learned about bonds, which are small slices of debt. Today Michael Fischer defines stocks, or small slices of equity: What is a stock? (2:37) The stock market has its own unique vocabulary, with “puts” and “calls”, “preferred stock” and “P/E ratios”, “dividends” and “spread”. I’ll cover more…

  • Saving and Investing: What is a Bond? (7 comments)

    This is part eight in a series that will occupy the “money hacks” slot at Get Rich Slowly during April, which is National Financial Literacy Month. Today’s episode of “Saving and Investing” moves us from the introductory material to the details of common investments. To begin, Michael Fischer explains bonds: What is a bond? (2:38) This video left me wanting more. Bonds, like leverage, have been a blank spot in my financial education. I’ve never…

  • Saving and Investing: Why do Financial Markets Exist? (4 comments)

    This is part seven in a series that will occupy the “money hacks” slot at Get Rich Slowly during April, which is National Financial Literacy Month. In today’s episode of “Saving and Investing”, Michael Fischer explains why we have financial markets. If you’ve been following along, you can probably guess that their primary function is to encourage interaction between providers of capital (savers and investors) and users of capital (companies and governments). Why do financial…

  • Financial Literacy for All Ages (7 comments)

    Get Rich Slowly readers have taken Financial Literacy Month to heart, and have been sending me information about money education for people of all ages. Kristin wrote to tell me that her two grade-school-aged boys have been reading about money: [My children participated] in a reading program sponsored by the State Treasurer, The Oregon College Savings Plan, and Oppenheimer Funds, Inc. It required 800 minutes of reading, including at least two books from a recommended reading…

  • Saving and Investing: An Introduction to Financial Statements (12 comments)

    This is part six in a series that will occupy the “money hacks” slot at Get Rich Slowly during April, which is National Financial Literacy Month. (Now with correct videos!) Today’s episode of “Saving and Investing” features three short videos, each of which is an introduction to a particular financial statement. Learning to read financial statements can help you evaluate the companies in which you would like to invest. (These statements are mandatory parts of…

  • Saving and Investing: Providers and Users of Capital (8 comments)

    This is part three in a series that will occupy the “money hacks” slot at Get Rich Slowly during April, which is National Financial Literacy Month. In his book Saving and Investing, Michael Fischer writes: Compounding our money with a return over a long period is the key to accumulating larger sums, but what is it that allows our money to receive a return, and what determines whether this return will be good or bad?…

  • Saving and Investing: The Power of Compounding (21 comments)

    This is part two in a series that will occupy the “money hacks” slot at Get Rich Slowly during April, which is National Financial Literacy Month. Albert Einstein reportedly called compound interest the greatest mathematical discovery of all time. On its surface, compounding is innocuous — even boring. “So what if my money earns 5.40% in a high-yield savings account?” you might ask. “What does it matter if it averages 10% annual growth in a…

  • Saving and Investing: Introduction (5 comments)

    This is the first in a series that will occupy the “Money Hacks” slot at Get Rich Slowly during April, which is National Financial Literacy Month. While browsing YouTube a couple weeks ago, I stumbled upon some short videos about saving and investing. They were low-key and low-tech, and I might have dismissed them except that the information they contained was solid and easy-to-understand. Intrigued, I contacted Michael Fischer, the man who created the videos….

  • Small Amounts Matter (14 comments)

    Sometimes I’ll be talking about frugality with somebody who says, “Why bother? Pinching pennies all the time makes me feel lousy. Besides, you can’t really save that much money. You really save money on the big stuff.” This is a common response to frugal living. I have some standard replies: It is true that it’s important to save money on the big stuff, like a home or a car. Any time you make a large…

  • 10 Reasons You Aren’t Rich (31 comments)

    A couple of readers forwarded Jeffrey Strain’s list of 10 reasons you aren’t rich. It’s a fine piece, though it takes a negative approach. Sometimes we need to hear the negative. Strain’s ten reasons (with my commentary): You care what your neighbors think. It’s not a competition. Who cares if your best friend just bought a BMW? What does it matter that your sister dresses her kids in designer clothes? You know what’s best. Live…

  • Ask the Readers: How Much in an Emergency Fund? (91 comments)

    Andrea writes with a question about emergency funds: Does it make sense to keep six to eight months of expenses in an emergency fund? I always thought so. However, when I was doing my MBA, a classmate told me that emergency funds are unnecessary if you have a home equity line of credit. She said it makes more sense to use it to pay down your mortgage. If you lose your job, use the line…

  • The Road to Wealth is Paved with Goals (39 comments)

    Ramit Sethi, author of I Will Teach You to Be Rich, recently shared his thoughts on a New York Times profile of Russ Whitney, a real estate mogul who charges thousands of dollars to learn the secrets of his success. (Whitney helped inspire Casey Serin’s foreclosure odyssey. John T. Reed has extensive information on Whitney, not all of it negative.) Ramit’s post prompted me to read the original New York Times article. I began the…

  • BBC’s Financial Healthcheck (4 comments)

    Most financial calculators require you to enter a lot of numbers, after which they spit out more numbers in return. What if you’re not a numbers person? The BBC offers a financial healthcheck tool that uses plain English to help evaluate your money situation. Our financial healthcheck will give you some tips for a healthier financial lifestyle — now and in the future. It will only take a few minutes. There’s no need to dig…

  • 10 Common Money Mistakes (23 comments)

    In my office, I have an entire shelf devoted to books I’ve borrowed from the public library. One that I’ve been browsing recently is Ilyce R. Glink’s 100 Questions You Should Ask About Your Personal Finances. This book is structured as a series of questions and answers addressing personal finance concerns. It’s not bad. In the appendix, Glink lists ten common personal finance mistakes. She writes: There’s nothing wrong with making a mistake. It happens…

  • What to Do If Your Identity is Stolen (9 comments)

    CreditPro is a new blog featuring advice from an employee of a non-profit credit repair agency. The site has only been around a week but already has several great articles: The top 7 credit score secrets Avoiding payday loans Improving your credit after a bankruptcy 8 things you must do if your identity is stolen I particularly like the article on identity theft. What should you do if your identity is stolen? CreditPro suggests: Call…

  • A Brief History of Money (1 comment)

    Rhetorical Device has published an article entitled “A Brief History of Money” which answers some questions I’ve had lately. The piece provides an overview of the history of financial exchange, including: Bartering at Mesopotamian markets and the limitations of this system (“for a trade to occur each person must have something the other wants, and must have it at the right time”). The introduction of the “Barley Standard”, which is similar to the modern gold…

  • 7 Ways to Take Charge of Your Finances in 2007 (36 comments)

    Always broke? Burdened by debt? Living paycheck-to-paycheck? Here’s a list of seven simple but effective steps you can take to seize control of your money instead of letting your money control you. ~ Track every penny you spend ~ The authors of Your Money or Your Life admonish readers to “keep track of every cent that comes into or goes out of your life.” [This is] the best way to become conscious of how money…

  • Personal Finance 101: Dumb Mistakes Lead to Financial Ruin (20 comments)

    Here’s a disturbing question from AskMetafilter: I received a foreclosure notice. I have the money, but have been having a difficult time with the lender. How do I prevent a foreclosure on my house? I purchased my house about five years ago, and set up my mortgage to be paid with an automatic bank draft. Last May, I fell for a phishing scam and had to close my checking account immediately. I called the mortgage…

  • Warning: Identity Theft Doesn’t Stop During the Holidays (5 comments)

    Randy at Parable of the Talents warns that identity theft doesn’t stop during the holidays. In fact, it’s likely that crooks are more active than ever! I recently received an email that I thought was from my bank asking for some information because supposedly my online bank account access had been compromised.  The email looked like it was officially from my bank and at the time I was busy multi-tasking so I was not completely…

  • Why Bother With Personal Finance? (12 comments)

    Here’s a great comment from a new reader: I just found this blog today, and I’m really confused. The title seems to suggest that this is a blog of good advice for people trying to save money and be thrifty. Overall, though, it seems the posters just end up in the same pitfalls and unpleasant surprises as anyone else. Viz the recent pair of postings of “don’t get an extended warranty” followed by “crap, my…

  • Are You Normal About Money? (13 comments)

    How much do families spend on food? How much has the average person saved for retirement? Do others balance their checkbooks every month? Every week? Every day? When shopping for homes, how much time do people take? I recently spent $4 on a book that answers these questions and others like them. Are You Normal About Money? by Bernice Kanner purports to offer a statistical representation of the financial lives of normal Americans. While I…

  • 8 Ways to Make Bill-Paying Easier (17 comments)

    My friend Mike is well-off. He lives alone, makes a good salary, invests wisely, and doesn’t spend money on foolish endeavors. Yet he often gets charged late fees. Why? Because he’s disorganized. He brings his bills home, throws them on the table, and they get lost under a mass of paper during the weeks that follow. When he remembers his bills, he pays the late fees, and sends extra money to cover the next few…

  • How to Find an Accountant (10 comments)

    I am not a financial expert. I’m just an average guy who wants to improve his personal finances while helping others to improve theirs. I feel comfortable giving general advice, but sometimes people write with specific questions that can only be answered by a qualified financial professional. Some questions are best answered by a lawyer, an accountant, or a financial planner. What do I mean by that? How does one find professional help? To find…

  • Saving Money vs. Making Money (9 comments)

    I’m sometimes asked, “Which do you think is more important: saving money or making money?” They’re both important, equal factors in the wealth equation: [WEALTH] = [WHAT YOU EARN] – [WHAT YOU SPEND] Which is most important to you depends on your current financial situation. If you have a good income, then the most important thing you can do is to control spending. If your family earns $100,000 a year and is unable to make…

  • How and Why to Start an Emergency Fund (92 comments)

    “Pay off your debt.” “Max out your IRA.” “Buy a house.” “Get a new job.” Personal finance advisers bombard us with a litany of things we ought to do in order to achieve financial independence. It’s overwhelming. Where’s a person to start? Most personal finance books agree: the first thing you should do — after meeting basic needs, and while reducing spending — is to start an emergency fund. What is an emergency fund? An…

  • The British Monetary System, Demystified (6 comments)

    Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pound ought and six, result misery. — Charles Dickens, David Copperfield My topic for Blogathon has been Funny Money. Is there anything funnier than the old (pre-decimal) British monetary system? Is there an American alive that understands it? I’m an avid reader, and my head swims when money is mentioned in Dickens or Austen or Thackeray. The wikipedia…

  • Who is Love 22…? (3 comments)

    …and what does he have to do with money? According to Love 22‘s own web site: “LOVE 22″ is (A  PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE), a Unique Comic Performer, and (A CHAMPION FRISBEE PLAYER) who prints up real “$22. BILLS.”  He performs at  (THE MALLORY SQUARE SUNSET) festival in Key West, Florida. “I.K.W.F” Using origami he entertains the crowds by fashioning (BOOTS, SHIRTS, BOW TIE & RINGS) out of the “$22. BILLS.” LOVE 22 also appears world wide at…

  • How to Get Better Customer Service (4 comments)

    I hate dealing with bureaucratic corporations. Their customer service is a joke. Even dealing with small companies can be a challenge. But I’m slowly learning how to coax good customer service out of the companies I call. Here’s a list of my favorite tips. According to consultant Dr. Gary S. Goodman: Customers need to take some responsibility for the quality of the service they receive. And if they want better service, they should try becoming…

  • Toward Financial Independence (7 comments)

    If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours. — Henry David Thoreau In the midst of our rush to earn money, our scramble to save for retirement, our focus on frugality, it’s easy to lose sight of why we’re doing this. What is the goal? What is it we’re trying to do by…

  • Smart People Ask Questions (1 comment)

    Here’s a some advice Ramit at I Will Teach You to Be Rich shared last winter: Smart people ask questions. Asking questions of the right people does so many things: You don’t have to reinvent the wheel, you get your problem solved, and you can potentially learn unexpected cool nuggets. But sometimes it’s not obvious what we should ask questions about. Start with the obvious. [...] Think about the curious friends you have. They’re the…

  • Personal Finance Resources from the U.S. Government (0 comment)

    Did you know that the U.S. government has a web site devoted to helping citizens with sound personal finance? MyMoney.gov is the U.S. government’s website dedicated to teaching all Americans the basics about financial education. Whether you are planning to buy a home, balancing your checkbook, or investing in your 401k, the resources on MyMoney.gov can help you do it better. Throughout the site, you will find important information from 20 federal agencies government wide….

  • How to Obtain Your Free Credit Report (10 comments)

    Ralph writes: I’d like to know how to get a free copy of my credit report from the agencies. A recent federal law gives consumers access to their credit reports; however, it costs extra to obtain your credit score. Your credit score is not an actual component of your credit report. The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) requires each of the nationwide consumer reporting companies — Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion — to provide you with…

  • Twelve Financial Truths (1 comment)

    VinTek forwarded a list of twelve financial truths written by Jonathan Clements for The Wall Street Journal. The full article is now behind a paywall. Here are the bullet points: It’s hard to cut back. Once you’re used to a certain standard of living, it’s difficult to go back. This is an excellent argument for socking away salary increases in savings. You’ll never be satisfied. There’s always something else you’ll want. If you can learn…

  • The Most Important Money Tip (32 comments)

    Personal finance is easy. It’s simple. There is one fundamental law that governs your money. If you master this, you have mastered the entire game: To gain wealth, you must spend less than you earn. In David Copperfield — one of my favorite books — Charles Dickens wrote: Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pound ought and six, result misery. That’s all it takes….

  • Ben Franklin’s Advice to a Young Tradesman (1 comment)

    TO MY FRIEND, A. B.: — As you have desired of me, I write the following hints, which have been of service to me, and may, if observed, be so to you. Remember that time is money. He that can earn ten shillings a day by his labour and goes abroad or sits idle one-half of that day, though he spends but sixpence during his diversion or idleness, ought not to reckon that the only…

  • Necessary Hints to Those That Would Be Rich (0 comment)

    (by Benjamin Franklin, from Poor Richard’s Almanack (1737)) The use of money is all the advantage there is in having money. For six pounds a year you may have the use of one hundred pounds, provided you are a man of known prudence and honesty. He that spends a groat a day idly spends idly above six pounds a year, which is the price for the use of one hundred pounds. He that wastes idly…

  • Plan for Saving One Hundred Thousand Pounds (1 comment)

    (by Benjamin Franklin in Poor Richard’s Almanac, 1756) As I spent some weeks last winter in visting my old acquaintance in the Jerseys, great complaints I heard for want of money, and that leave to make more paper bills could not be obtained. Friends and countrymen, my advice on this head shall cost you nothing; and if you will not be angry with me for giving it, I promise you not to be offended if…

  • Tip: Pay Your Bills as They Arrive (16 comments)

    Here’s a tip that can pay big dividends: Pay your bills as they arrive. This helps financially and psychologically. I get paid twice a month. Because I used to live paycheck-to-paycheck, I paid my bills twice a month, too. Although I now have a buffer of savings, it’s only recently that I’ve discovered the advantages of paying my bills as they come in rather than waiting until they’re due: It saves time. Rather than spend…

  • One Uncle’s Advice About Money (9 comments)

    Get Rich Slowly reader Drake says, “I thought you’d be interested in a portion of an email I sent to my college-age nephew several months ago.  It expresses my attitude about money.”   Money is very important, but only if it is understood properly.  Most people don’t understand it at all. They don’t understand how money fits into a full and complete life, how it needs to be controlled, how one should relate to it. …

  • General Investment Tips (2 comments)

    Matt’s General Investing Tips reflect common investment wisdom as I understand it. There is nothing new or shocking here. This is mainstream investment advice. If you’re looking for an introduction to the various investment vehicles, Matt does an excellent job summarizing the pros and cons of stocks, bonds, and mutual funds. Matt stresses several factors: It is not possible to outguess the market. “If you see a piece of news in the media you should…

  • How Compound Returns Favor the Young (41 comments)

    In an earlier entry about the cost of waiting one year to begin investing for retirement, I posted a chart from AllFinancialMatters that demonstrated the power of compound returns. Vintek posted a math exercise related to the subject. I got this from a book called The Random Walk Guide to Investing by Burton Malkiel. It’s a book I recommend, and I’ll eventually talk about it in the forum. Here’s the exercise: William and James are…

  • Spare Change #3 (0 comment)

    There have been many great personal finance bits on the web the past few days. Here are a few of my favorites: My wife succumbed to a high-pressure car salesman when I was out of town. Help me get some or all of my money back! Also: What car should I buy? [from AskMetafilter] What not to sell on eBay. (Part two of a series that I mentioned in my eBay method.) [via lifehacker] How…

  • 12 Financial Tips for Women (2 comments)

    Dana Bratch has created a list of twelve financial tips for women. While neither gender has an exclusive lock on money management skills, the financial deck is stacked against women. They earn about three-quarters of what men make. In a divorce, they get less of the assets and more of the children. They live longer, and one in eight elderly women lives in poverty, compared to one in 12 men, according to 2003 figures from…

  • Financial Advice For My Son (0 comment)

    T. Chester has created a great site devoted to financial advice for his son. This is an excellent introduction to personal finance for anyone, and well worth the twenty minutes it takes to read. Some of Chester’s key points: The three most important precepts: The most powerful force in the Universe is compound interest! Savings is most important There is no such thing as a legitimate “get rich quick” scheme. Things to do before investing:…