Trading Happiness for Money: A Bad Bargain?

I think a lot about happiness — about my own happiness and about the happiness of those around me. Knowing my interest in the subject, Kris forwarded a recent column from David Brooks of The New York Times about what he terms “the Sandra Bullock trade”: Two things happened to Sandra Bullock [in March]. First, she won an Academy Award for best actress. […]

Do-It-Yourself Laundry Detergent

Do you really need to use as much laundry detergent as they say on the bottle? Do you need to use laundry detergent at all? We investigated and you'll be shocked by what we found. […]

21 Best Money Tips Ever

CNN Money lists what they call the 21 best money tips ever. They asked "some of the nation's leading business owners, investors, and thinkers" to "share their thoughts on rebuilding your wealth." Here are some of the highlights IMO: Jane Bryant Quinn - "Pay off your mortgage before you retire if you want financial safety and security. […]

Latest Best of Money Carnival

Just a note that the newest edition of the Best of Money Carnival is now up. Congrats to all participants and especially the winning post, 10 Tips to Save You from an ATM Skimmer. Enjoy! […]

Don’t Pay Taxes With Credit Cards

If you’re one of the many taxpayers who owe the Department of the Treasury some money, you might be tempted to pull out the plastic and push the payment decision off another month. Or maybe you’re thinking about paying with a credit card for the rewards. Or maybe you can’t pay and think putting it on the credit card is your only option. […]

Comcast Blows It, then Recovers, Again

When I wrote Comcast Blows It and then Saves It, it was a happy time. I had a problem, they fixed it (in a very nice way, BTW), and I was enjoying life with my new Comcast programming. I was happy even though not everyone was rejoicing with me. […]

Are Automatic IRAs the Answer for Low Income Workers Saving for Retirement?

There has been increasing discussion lately about new ways to help lower income employees who may not have access to more traditional retirement savings to begin saving for retirement. We already have a number of retirement vehicles available for most people, but there are still millions of people who simply don’t save anything for retirement. […]

Reader Mailbag: Golf

I spent a good chunk of yesterday attempting to teach my children (four and two years old) the fundamentals of golf. The results were interesting. […]

Save on Last Year's Taxes Right Now

Did you know that you can make money moves this year that can help you save on last year’s taxes?It's true. Linsey’s post on procrastination and tax tips reminded me that procrastination can pay, specifically in the form of a lower tax bill. […]

The Work Exchange Way to See the World

So you want to explore the world and don't have the dough for it. Plus, you just aren't into the whole teaching scene. Or maybe you don't have the qualifications for that yet. No worries. […]

No Fee Balance Transfers from PenFed – Expires June 30, 2010

As a followup to my recent post about PenFed credit card offers, as well as Saturday’s roundup of 8 Top Balance Transfers which reviewed the best current balance transfer credit card offers including 0% APR balance transfers, I wanted to highlight an e-mail that I recently received from PenFed regarding their transfer fees… It seems that they’ve decided to waive the balance transfer fee associated […]

The American Opportunity Tax Credit

Last week I offered some last-minute tax filing tips, and the IRS deadline is looming. I’m happy to tackle tax questions, and Consumerism Commentary reader Eric has one. Eric was a full-time student through May 2009, and he, like many former students, is dealing with the cost of a college education. […]

120 Rule vs. Target Retirement Funds

Have you ever heard of the 120 Rule? The 120 Rule is a basic asset allocation rule. Take your age and subtract it from 120. That is the percentage you should be invested in stocks and the balance should be in bonds. If you’re 40, then you should have 80% in stocks and 20% in bonds. If you’re 50, then 70% stocks and 30% bonds. […]

Poll: How Much Do You Need to Save for Retirement?

This post contains an excerpt from Chapter 13 of Your Money: The Missing Manual, my new book from O’Reilly Media. It’s also a part of National Financial Literacy Month. For the past several months, GRS has been running a new poll in the sidebar every two weeks. Mostly, these are curiosities to me. But the poll that just concluded produced an interesting tidbit of information. […]

The Eternal Question: Rent or Buy?

The following is an excerpt from Your Money: The Missing Manual , an excellent book written by JD Roth from Get Rich Slowly. Copyright 2010 O'Reilly Media, Inc. All rights reserved. Used with permission. Deciding whether to rent or buy is a complicated financial and emotional decision. […]

Complement what Mr. and Mrs. Jones have

Our new subdivision has a lot of families with kids, which is a great thing for our five-year-old daughter.  Her new playmates, of course, have lots of new toys that they’re often very happy to share. At our previous house, the owners had bought a slide and swing playset that our daughter used a fair bit.  Our new home, as nice at it is, didn’t convey with one, so we have a blank slate to deal wit […]

Chase Sapphire Review: Rewards From Sapphire, Preferred Cards

When you have a credit card, it should do more than just let you pay for purchases. This is especially true if you’re the sort of credit card holder who pays off your balance each month or if you carry a low balance. […]

GRS Video Contest Update (and PR Week)

Time is winding down on the Get Rich Slowly video contest. For a while, I was worried that nobody was going to enter. Last week at this time, we only had five entries. The pool is up to 23 videos now, though. […]

Review: The Little Book of Big Dividends

Every Sunday, The Simple Dollar reviews a personal finance book or other book of interest. I’ve always found the idea of investing in stocks for dividends to be an intriguing one. In a very simplistic way, that means you buy stocks in individual companies that are very stable and have paid strong dividends for a long time. […]

Podcast 51: Money and Parenting, Kara McGuire

This week’s guest on the Consumerism Commentary Podcast is Kara McGuire, personal finance columnist at the Minneapolis Star Tribune. […]