The Real Cost of a Sandwich

The staff of (it might just be this one guy named Rob, and sometimes his friends), has a series called “How Much is Inside?” which attempts to figure out how much mundane items should cost. Recently, they tackled the sandwich. He weighed and measured and inspected every ingredient in your average turkey & cheese, grilled cheese, and peanut butter & jelly. […]

How to Read Your Social Security Statement

If you have a job, you’re paying into the Social Security program. Social Security, or more officially and appropriately, the Old age, survivors, and disability insurance program (OASDI); is more than just a check when you retire or a payroll deduction on your pay stub. […]

How Much is a Good Commute Worth?

The Brazen Careerist talks about dealing with an insane commute and it got me to thinking -- just what is a "good" work commute worth? In other words, would you take a $10,000 a year pay cut if it meant you only had a 10-minute commute versus a 45-minute one? It's an interesting question. I had a friend who used to live in New Jersey and commute to New York City every day for work. […]

$50 TradeKing Promotion, $50 To Refer A Friend

If you happen to be shopping for a discount broker these days, you’re in luck because a couple of these brokerages have come up with promotions in recent months. […]

Why the tip jars are coming out

Liz Pulliam Weston had an article today on the new tip-jar economy — that new business practice of putting out the tip jar, raising the “customary” tipping percentage, and adding other tip-like fees that are no longer discretionary, but mandatory. Her take regarding the tip jars was, in essence:  Ignore the tip jars at businesses where the employees shouldn’t be tipped as a matter of custom, unles […]

Seeking A Mortgage Loan Modification To Save My Home

Stacey is a guest contributor who’s had her share of struggles with debt — in particular, her mortgage. I invited her to share her story about how she’s working to prevent her house from going into foreclosure. Her goal? To lower her home loan rate with a loan modification. Much like everyone else, I experience financial victories and losses based on the current economy. […]

The Personal Finance Hour, Episode 23: Money and Happiness

On today’s episode of The Personal Finance Hour, I joined Jim from Bargaineering to discuss the relationship between money and happiness. Will more money make you happier? Are we happy when we get the things we want? Does happiness have a genetic set-point? […]

15 Ways to Be a Leader Today – or Any Day

Three years ago, one of my mentors was debating internally about how to handle a personnel situation. There were enough funds to employ one person. The performance of one worker was better overall, but the other worker often showed flashes of brilliance and was trusted more by his coworker. In the end, the decision was made to keep the one with flashes of brilliance. […]

How to Retire Early

Here are some thoughts from the great personal finance book Grow Your Money!: 101 Easy Tips to Plan, Save, and Invest. They list secrets of successful early retirees as follows: Successful early retirees have their eyes on the early-retirement prize for decades in advance. Modest lifestyle -- before and after retirement. […]

Best of Consumerism Commentary, September 2009

Thank you for reading Consumerism Commentary. This website continues to be a success, thanks to visitors who participate in discussions, ask questions, and share stories. […]

Memories Appreciate, Stuff Depreciates

When JD and I had Greg Karp, author of The 1-2-3 Money Plan, on the Personal Finance Hour show a few weeks ago, something that Greg said really resonated with me (and I said so during the show). I paraphrase: Memories appreciate, while stuff depreciates. I suppose I intuitively knew this because I’ve always been an “memories” type of person. […]

Dealista Tip: Craigslist Shopping 101

By Linsey Knerl This article shares tips from the 7th episode of Dealista, our new podcast that'll help you get more for less. […]

Handling Money and Marriage Issues

The following is a guest post from Neal Frankle, the author of Why Smart People Lose A Fortune.  He also blogs at Wealth Pilgrim. Can you live with a spouse or partner who is super frugal if you aren’t? […]

How to Start Your Own Blog

By WC Porter I'm a huge believer in starting a blog to further your career — you'll learn so much in the process that in the end you'll become a better job candidate and a better employee. […]

Best Deals For Monday 10/05/09

By Lynn Truong Coupon: 60% off Gift Certificates slashes 60% off any gift certificate via coupon code ENJOY. […]

Poll: 47% of Households Will Not Owe Taxes in 2009 – Is That Fair?

I don’t think you can find a single person out there who enjoys paying taxes, but I encountered an interesting article on CNN this morning that said nearly half of all U.S. households will not owe any federal income tax for 2009. […]

10 Best Posts Available

The Best of Money Carnival this week is now up at Financial Highway. This week's winner was How Stupidity on Wall Street Violated the Most Basic Laws of Physics. Check it out if you're interested in the best personal finance posts from the past week. […]

Reader Mailbag #83

Each Monday, The Simple Dollar opens up the reader mailbags and answers ten to twenty simple questions offered up by the readers on personal finance topics and many other things. Got a question? Ask it in the comments. […]

5 Ways Self Storage Units Are More Sad Museums Than Savvy Solutions

By Max Wong This week I did an intervention on Sarah, one of my dearest friends. It wasn't the first time. Over the last few years I have unsuccessfully attempted to get her to seek help for a problem that has cost her conservatively $48,000 and put financial and emotional stress on her family. This week, after over five years of trying to manage her problem, she finally hit rock bottom. […]