It may seem like there is a lot to personal finance. And in one sense there is. There are thousands of different approaches to personal finance. And this can get overwhelming. It may seem so overwhelming that you feel paralyzed at square one. But it doesn't have to be. There are a handful of things that are critical in personal finance. All the rest is splitting hairs. So go through each of these items one at a time and make an improvement in each area. . . .
Why do you care about money? Is this even a question worth pondering? Should we even care about money in the first place? And how much should we value money? Perhaps these are odd questions to come from a personal finance blog. After all, money is so important that I've spent hundreds of thousands of words talking about money. But why? Overvaluing Money is Common. And Dangerous Most of us will . . .
If you've done much online shopping, you're probably familiar with coupon codes. Pretty much every online store has a spot for coupon codes or promo codes somewhere in the checkout process. If you're ambitious, you've may have searched Google or Retail-Me-Not for promo codes. Chances are, you find several, most of which don't work. If you're lucky, you might find one that will work. Otherwise, . . .
Often when our budgets begin getting bloated, cable, internet and phone bills are chief culprits. These have a tendency to slowly grow over time, and because they are recurring monthly bills, little changes make big differences. If your budget allows for what you're currently spending in these categories, great! But if you aren't putting enough into emergency funds, retirement funds or . . .
Knowing how much insurance to buy is one of the harder topics of personal finance. It factors in the future, and all the unknowns that come with the future. On the one hand, insurance protects your wealth from negative events in the future. On the other hand, however, insurance costs you in the present, which in turn, costs you in future earnings on that money. Buy too little insurance, and you . . .
You are likely paying for several kinds of insurance- car, life, house, renters, health etc. Insurance makes us feel secure and protected from life's 'eventualities'. We hope that when the crap hits the fan, insurance keeps it from hitting us too. Unfortunately insurance also costs us quite a bit too. If you add up all the premiums you're paying, insurance is probably one of the largest items on . . .
If used responsibly, credit cards can be a convenient way to make purchases, earn cashback and protect yourself from fraud. However, some credit cards come with fees that negate the benefits of carrying the card. There's so many fee-free credit cards that come with great benefits, that there are few cases where paying an annual fee for a credit card makes sense. So what should you do if you have a . . .
Investing is important. Investing puts your money to work. Investing harnesses the power of compound interest. Investing also protects your money from inflation. Yes, investing, especially in the stock market, does carry short term risk. So it is important to only invest money that you are committed to keeping invested for a decade or more. But many people don't invest for other reasons. Often . . .
A few weeks ago, I promised I was going to try Swagbucks, and deliver a review. As a brief recap, Swagbucks pays you to take surveys, sign up for special offers, use their search engine, play games and watch videos. Despite Swagbuck's prominent claim of collectively paying members almost $200 million, I went in with low expectations. However, I figured that if nothing else, I could at least earn . . .
The average cost of raising a child through age 17 in the United States is $233,610. That's $12,978 per year. Now, just like any other parent out there, I think my kids are priceless. I also know that raising them costs money. But not $12,978 per year kind of money. Especially since I have 3. So what are some ways to keep costs down? 1. Buy Diapers Strategically In the first 2 years, diapers . . .
There's a common misconception that you need to spend money to have fun. If you buy into this misconception too much, you'll easily amuse yourself broke. Fortunately, there are many ways to relax, have fun and enjoy a day or afternoon off for little or no money. 1. Parks and Trails Most cities spend a significant amount of money providing and maintaining public parks and trails. On nice days, . . .