Blog Profile / The Simple Dollar

Filed Under:Business & Finance / Personal Finance
Posts on Regator:4967
Posts / Week:10.2
Archived Since:November 13, 2008

Blog Post Archive

Some Thoughts on Parenting and Personal Finance Success from an Experienced Parent

Sarah and I welcomed our first child into the world in 2005, not too long before the launch of The Simple Dollar. Since then, we’ve been on this shared journey called “parenting,” and as our firstborn has grown older and we’ve added two more children to the mix, the challenges have grown and changed. Show More Summary

Why You Should Work on Your Credit (Even if You Never Plan to Buy a House)

While home ownership used to be a mainstay of the “American Dream,” rising housing prices and changing priorities mean not everyone wants to own a home these days. Many people prefer to have flexibility to move when they want, and just as many would prefer to let their landlord handle pricey upgrades and repairs. Show More Summary

Questions About Roth IRAs, Paper Notebooks, Abandoned Desks, and More!

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to summaries of five or fewer words. Click on the number to jump straight down to the question. 1. Nervous about large investments 2. Buying a “new” car 3. Show More Summary

Questions About Roth IRA Conversions, Guitars, Bread Dough, and More!

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to summaries of five or fewer words. Click on the number to jump straight down to the question. 1. Financial independence impossible? 2. Postponing happiness 3. Show More Summary

Chase Sapphire Reserve? is Not Your Daddy’s Credit Card

JPMorgan Chase puts out a card for the generation that ‘doesn’t want to buy stuff.’ The takeaways JPMorgan Chase offers the Chase Sapphire Reserve? for people who just want to experience the world Greater emphasis is placed on earning...Show More Summary

Do the Numbers Add Up for Long-Term Care Insurance?

Long-term care is expensive and frightening to think about. But that doesn’t make long-term care insurance the right way to deal with it. Melinda Kibler, a certified financial planner with Palisades Hudson Financial Group in Fort Lauderdale,...Show More Summary


A few days ago, I was reading the excellent leadership book The CEO Next Door by Elena Botelho and Kim Powell, which basically takes the same core idea behind The Millionaire Next Door (lots and lots of interviews and surveys) and applies it to leaders and their leadership skills rather than millionaires and their financial skills. Show More Summary

Games? Books? Clothes? Seven Key Strategies for Making Expensive Hobbies Much Cheaper

As a fairly frugal person, I struggle with the fact that two of my favorite hobbies are closely tied with the idea of collecting things. I love books. I love to curl up with a good book for many hours and get lost in them. Unfortunately,...Show More Summary

How and Why to Make a Prior-Year IRA Contribution Before the April Deadline

Did you know that you’re allowed to make IRA contributions for last year all the way up until this year’s tax filing deadline? That’s right. You can make IRA contributions all the way until April 17, 2018 and mark them as 2017 contributions. Show More Summary

The Most Motivating Financial Chart I’ve Ever Seen

While perusing the financial blogosphere on a lazy Sunday, I came across a unique chart called “The Early Retirement Grid.” The grid’s main purpose is to show long it will take you to retire given various changes in your income and spending levels. Show More Summary

The Spectrum of Personal Finance

About a year ago, I learned that an old colleague of mine had retired and become something of a “hermit.” He was living apparently completely off the grid and was building a cabin for himself on a piece of secluded land. This gradually...Show More Summary

Life Without Retirement Savings

Recently, The Atlantic published a tremendously powerful article by Alana Semuels entitled This Is What Life Without Retirement Savings Looks Like, which is well worth reading for anyone who is hedging their bets on the question of whether to save for retirement at all or whether to save more for retirement. Show More Summary

Seven Subjects to Learn More About Once You ‘Get’ Personal Finance and Investing

You’ve read several personal finance books over the last few years. You’ve gorged on personal finance websites. You’ve developed a plan to get yourself out of debt and largely executed it. You’re saving for retirement at a nice rate....Show More Summary

You Can Earn These Credit Card Signup Bonuses More Than Once

If you love earning airline miles, hotel points, and cash-back with rewards and travel credit cards, you probably already know how lucrative signup bonuses can be. If not, you should start paying more attention to the cards you sign up for and their unique introductory promotions. Show More Summary

Why ‘It’s Only $X per Month’ Is Disastrous Financial Thinking

Recently, my wife and I have been shopping around for a car to replace our 2004 vehicle, which has over 200,000 miles on it and a host of repair issues starting to pop up. At one point during this process, we found ourselves at a dealership and we overheard a financial representative talking to a customer while we were waiting. Show More Summary

16 Little Frugality Tips That Make a Surprising Difference

So, it’s not a secret to anyone who reads The Simple Dollar that I carry around a pocket notebook and a pen with me most of the time. I use it to jot down little thoughts or things that I want to remember and then, each evening, I go through it and follow up on those thoughts and things. Show More Summary

The Paradoxical Power of Idleness

In 1935, the influential British philosopher Bertrand Russell wrote an essay titled “In Praise of Idleness.” In it, he extolled the virtues of relaxation and leisure even in the face of withering pressure to push your body and mind to their limits. Show More Summary

The Most Common Credit Card Fees and How to Avoid Them

Credit cards can be valuable financial tools if used responsibly, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t pitfalls to be aware of. One of the biggest is credit card debt — a consequence you’ll face if you charge more on your card than you can afford to pay back. Show More Summary

Eight Ways to Borrow Less for College

If you feel like college costs a lot more than it used to, you’re absolutely correct. The average in-state tuition at public, four-year schools has more than tripled since 1988 — even when adjusted for inflation — from the equivalent of $3,190 a year in 1988 to $9,970 in the 2017-18 school year. Show More Summary

Starting a Simple Vegetable and Herb Garden

When spring break rolls around, our children often head out to the grandparents, leaving Sarah and I with a several day “stay-cation” of sorts. While I’m usually still working, I often plan ahead to take a day or two off during thatShow More Summary

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