Behavior Gap Napkin Sketch Giveaway

I received an advance copy of Carl Richards’ book scheduled for wide release on January 3, The Behavior Gap: Simple Ways to Stop Doing Dumb Things with Money. Carl is a Certified Financial Planner who began writing articles — and sketching on napkins — at his own website,, and now does the same for the New York Times. […]

Cold-Weather Cities Top Retirement List

When most people think of moving during retirement they think of going to Florida, Arizona, Texas or some other warm-weather climate. And who can blame them? After over a decade living in Michigan, I'm ready for a bit of heat myself!Not so fast says US News. […]

How to Find Good Stuff at Goodwill (and Other Secondhand Stores)

I’ve mentioned quite often that I tend to shop at Goodwill/consignment shops/secondhand stores for various items. Whenever I mention this, I tend to get a bunch of responses along the lines of this message from Tessa: How do you find anything good at Goodwill? Whenever I go into one, all I find is a lot of junk. […]

Binding Arbitration: Wells Fargo Taking Away Customers’ Rights

If you enter into an agreement with a company, and that company does something to wrong you, most of the time you can avail yourself of the American judicial system to correct the problem. This happens frequently, with both individual lawsuits and class action lawsuits. […]

Payroll Tax Cut Extended for Two Months

After political bickering, the House of Representatives agreed to make a deal with the Senate to extend the payroll tax holiday. This tax cut reduced the payroll tax — a tax separate from but often associated with federal income tax — from 6.2% to 4.2% of the first $110,100 of wages. The tax benefits Social Security, a program politicians often claim is in danger of being underfunded. […]

A Moment of Serendipity

Lately, there have been lots of stories of people blessed with opportunity using that newfound wealth to help others. A Minnesota farmer gave most of his estate to his hometown, totaling about $3 million. A person in Ohio paid off $8,800 in WalMart layway accounts anonymously. Another “Secret Santa” in North Carolina made a similar move, paying off layway accounts there. These types of things are […]

How “Anchoring” Sways Your Decisions

This is a post from staff writer April Dykman. My favorite places to shop are sites like and Last Call Neiman Marcus. I like the idea of buying a $400 dress for $80 because I get better quality for a good price. […]

Happy Holidays!

Happy Monday! And Happy Tuesday too because this post will be on the front page tomorrow too while we’re on break to celebrate Christmas. We want to wish you and yours a fun, safe, and relaxing holiday and we’ll be back on Wednesday to give you your personal finance fix for this shortened week. Happy holidays! (Photo: pagedooley) Happy Holidays! […]

The Best Low Interest Rate Credit Cards

The only thing more challenging than managing credit card debt is getting out of it. To accomplish this important goal you need a sound budget, plenty of discipline, and a credit card with the lowest possible interest rate. […]

Friends and Goals: Don't Let a Blue Falcon Bring You Down

When I was in basic training for the Army, everybody hated Blue Falcons. The term Blue Falcon was the PG version used to describe a fellow soldier that was a "Buddy Fudger" (keeping it censored here for the kiddos). What exactly did it mean to be a Blue Falcon? […]

Save Money by Asking for Discounts

Last night I saved $228 (plus tax) with a 10 minute phone call. How? Easy. I called our DSL provider and asked for a discount. While poking around on their website, I noticed that they were offering their 6 Mbps DSL service (our current level) at a promo rate of $19.99/month for new customers. Given that we’ve been paying $43/month, I was annoyed. […]

Best Money Tips: Frugal Family Living

Welcome to Wise Bread's Best Money Tips Roundup! Today we found some great articles on frugal family living, beating Christmas debt, and tips for traveling with your pet. Top 5 Articles 10 Tips for Frugal Family Living — Live frugally as a family by making your own snacks. [] 5 ways to beat Christmas debt — To beat Christmas debt, make sure to plan out your repayments. […]

From Clutter to Clean: Make Your Desk Awesome

Clutter will swallow you alive if you don't control it. Stop tuning it out and start dealing with. Trust me, you don't need that to-do list from October. If you did, you would have done all that stuff by now. […]

Help a Reader: Traveling Abroad

Here's an email I recently received from a reader: I'm traveling abroad next month and I'm curious how people handle cash when traveling.  My Chase Sapphire Preferred card excludes me from foreign transaction fees on credit purchases, but I'm not sure what to expect on cash.  Travelers checks seem antiquated. […]

Star Money Articles and Carnivals for the Week of Dec 19

Here are some pieces I found especially worthwhile and some of the carnivals Free Money Finance was in this week: Cavalcade of Risk Carnival of Personal Finance Festival of Frugality Lazy Man and Money covers HARP refinancing. FrugalDad tells how to go to college debt free. BripBlap talks about being healthy. My Dollar Plan offers some inexpensive gift ideas. […]

Intuit Promises to Add Lion Support for Quicken 2007

Here’s a bit of good — albeit very overdue — news for those of you who have been waiting for Intuit to fix the Quicken 2007/Lion situation… As you may know, Quicken for Mac 2007 does not currently work on Apple’s latest operating system, Mac OS X 10.7 (Lion). I understand the frustration this may have caused you and have put a team in place to address this issue. […]

Investing Mostly in Bonds Means a Lower Lifestyle in Retirement

The following is a guest post from Marotta Wealth Management. Everyone worries about running out of money in retirement. Few people feel secure about government spending and Social Security. Even fewer retirees are confident about the future returns of the stock market. […]

FedEx Delivery and Your Career

If you’ve been watching the news the past few days, you’ve probably seen the infamous video of the FedEx deliveryman who just tosses a computer monitor delivery over a fence. […]

Another Reason to Hate Best Buy

I just saw this and had to share it: Talk about dropping the ball. Best Buy waited until as late as this week — mere days before Christmas — to admit that it’s not going to be able to fulfill the online orders placed by some customers. These are customers, by the way, who had made their purchases around Thanksgiving weekend, more than three weeks ago. Yikes! […]

Do Women Really Spend Too Much?

Here we go ladies. We put the guys on the financial hot seat in this article but now, it’s time to see how you’re spending your money. The stereotype in the minds of all of us (that is, the male population) is that you spend too much time at the mall and too much money on clothes, makeup and shoes. We’ll see if that stereotype is true but let’s look at a few quick facts. […]