How Much Should You Spend on an Engagement Ring?

When my husband and I decided to marry, neither of us was really excited about spending a large amount of money on an engagement ring. I had a friend whose family was in jewelry wholesale, and my parents knew an old jeweler. […]

Maker’s Mark Adds Water

I’ve never had Maker’s Mark, but I do have friends who enjoy this particular brand of bourbon — or the bottles in which the bourbon is sold. With this latest piece of news, I’m wondering if the company believes the bottle is the product being sold rather than the alcohol inside. Beam, the corporate owner of Maker’s Mark, has announced it’s reducing the alcohol content to meet demand. […]

Reader Mailbag: The Innocent Man

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to five word summaries. […]

15 Cheap Valentine’s Day Dates

Valentine’s Day is coming up in a few days and I’m sure you have everything planned… right? Right? With the economy still on the weaker side, the responsible thing to do is for you to go out, spend a lot of money, and stimulate the economy! I’m only kidding. Valentine’s Day isn’t about spending money on your loved one, it’s about spending time with your loved one. […]

Free Books: Little Libraries That Build Community and Save You Money

One of my earliest childhood memories is standing in a parking lot in rural New Mexico with my mother, waiting for the Bookmobile to arrive. I loved the Bookmobile, which was a former delivery truck, outfitted with bookshelves. In pre-Internet days, the Bookmobile brought the outside world to towns too teeny to support their own libraries or bookstores. […]

5 Best Online Checking Accounts

The Internet provides us almost limitless choices, especially when it comes to finances. These days, you can choose to keep your money at almost any bank in the nation rather than limit yourself to the brick-and-mortar choices in your local area. If you aren’t happy with your local offerings, turn to the Internet. […]

Taxes: Don’t rush it

I was really excited about filing my taxes this year. For once, I wasn’t really in need of any pricey things for the house (though I have plenty of wants. Hello, wood stove!), and was rubbing my hands together with the thought of the emergency savings fund I’d soon have in the bank account! […]

Best Money Tips: Score a Gym Membership Deal

Welcome to Wise Bread's Best Money Tips Roundup! Today we found some stellar articles on ways to score a gym membership deal, tax-savvy moves retirees can use, and how to become a "garage sale millionaire." Top 5 Articles 10 Ways to Score a Gym Membership Deal — To score a gym membership deal, negotiate and know the contract you are signing. […]

How to Create a Financial 5 Year Plan

"Most people don't plan to fail; they fail to plan." — John L. Beckley Where do you want to be five years from today, financially? My guess is that your answer probably sounds something like this — "I want to be in a better position than I am now." We all have dreams we want to pursue and goals we want to achieve. […]

Reader Profile: JW

The following is the latest post in my "Reader Profiles" series. Each post in this series details the financial situation and challenges of an FMF reader. […]

Working On Website

It has been several years since I changed the look of No Credit Needed. In an effort to simplify things, I have removed much of the clutter from the side-bar, changed the layout, and removed unnecessary code. I like the new green and gray color scheme. I may or may not update the header with a new graphic.  Right now, I’m digging the super-simple interface of this theme. Check the site out – and f […]

The Day of Love

This coming Thursday is Valentine’s Day, and an awful lot of couples out there are going to be spending some cash on flowers, on chocolates, on expensive dinners, and on other gifts on that day (or within a day or two of it). The entire purpose of the day is to express love for your partner and, in many ways, a romantic gift can do just that. […]

The Unfinished Shelf

Recently, I stripped all of the books off of my bookshelf in our bedroom. My wife and I each have a bookshelf in there, stuffed with books and other miscellany. […]

Great Financial Tools

For those of you new to Free Money Finance, I post on The Bible and Money every Sunday. Here's why. Recently the Christian Financial Alliance asked several bloggers the following question: “If you could point Christians towards one financial ‘tool’ (non-book), what would it be?” Here was my response: “Quicken. I’ve used it for years (decades, really) and LOVE it. […]

Reader Story: Teenagers and money (aka Debunking the Mom-Is-an-ATM myth)

This guest post is from Anna Weisend. Anna is a self- employed pastry chef and sugar artist with multiple streams of income, but her favorite job is the one that she doesn’t get paid for: being a mom! Some reader stories contain general advice; others are examples of how a GRS reader achieved financial success or failure. […]

The Internet can be a trap: The high cost of free

“Free” is one of my favorite four-letter words.  There’s almost no other more powerful marketing word.  (Except perhaps “you” because people love to have people pay attention to them.) Sadly, free isn’t free.  Everything has a cost.  There’s no such thing as a free lunch.  It’s so very easy to be lured into doing someone else’s bidding by something free. Much of the Internet is the embodiment of f […]

Planting Seeds

One of the best parts of gardening is that you get to watch the tiny seeds you plant in the early spring grow gradually into beautiful, blooming plants that provide food all throughout the harvest season. […]

Ten Pieces of Inspiration #112

Each week, I highlight ten things each week that inspired me to greater financial, personal, and professional success. Hopefully, they will inspire you as well. I love looking at peoples’ bookshelves. It often opens the door to a great connection with someone. Today, I’m sharing some of those glimpses from people who have made share-able photos of their shelves. 1. […]