2010 Federal Income Tax Brackets and Marginal Rates

The IRS has not formally announced the federal income tax brackets for 2010 yet. In fact, the 2009 tax brackets are still the numbers I — or more accurately, my accountant — will be focusing on in the near future. […]

When Family Members Steal

The following is a guest post by Jack Busch from MasterYourCard. It’s a sad fact: family members and friends are some of the most common perpetrators of identity theft and fraud. Residents of your household have easy access to all your personal information - they can easily log in to the family computer or open the filing cabinet in the office. […]

Ask the Readers: Would People Be Shocked By What You Earn?

By Linsey Knerl It happens all the time.  People are amazed that my husband and I can live on such a very limited income.  (In fact, my friends from urban areas are usually amazed that the majority of people in my rural community live well under the poverty line -- and some do very well with it!)  Other times, I witness families just barely struggling to get by -- who also make an hefty income an […]

Best Deals For Tuesday 9/22/09

By Paul Michael Today's WISEBUY. CROCS Women's Nanook Shoes For $11 + FREE s/h (dealnews) Crocs.com offers the Crocs Women's Nanook Shoes (pictured) in six colors for $14.99. Apply coupon code "anaappreciate1119" to cut it to $11.24. With free shipping, it's the lowest total price we could find by $16.   1. […]

Is Overmaintenance Costing You?

Whenever I write a post and mention oil changes, I always encourage people to check the manual of their automobile to find out how often they should change their oil? Why? […]

Forgiven Debt Isn't Really Forgiven At All

By Kate Luther If you've been struggling with the rest of the economy, chances are you've been forced to rethink your financial priorities. And as a result, credit cards are often the first thing to go. The good news is that once you get behind, many credit card companies will offer to "settle" your account, some for as much as just 40% of your original balance. […]

Essential Personal Finance E-Books

A few days ago, I released The Get Rich Slowly Guide to Roth IRAs as a free e-book. […]

One Person’s Successful Debtor’s Revolt

Frequent readers know all about how a depressed economy and new laws are serving as convenient excuses for banks to be raising interest rates and otherwise penalizing clients, even those who pose no risk. Ann Minch was presented with multiple notices of an interest rate hike. […]

How To Maximize Or Minimize Interest

If you are working to get out of debt, one of your goals will be to minimize the amount of interest that your creditors will charge you.  If you are working to save money, one of your goals will be to maximize the amount of interest that your savings will earn.  Here’s how to minimize the amount you will be charged and maximize the amount you will earn. Minimize Interest Charged - 1.  Do not wait […]

TradeMONSTER Review

TradeMONSTER is a relatively new online discount broker in an industry that hasn’t seen a new entrant in a few years. I believe TradeMonster’s strategy is to offer relatively low pricing (not rock bottom) and a powerful suite of browser-based analysis tools. TradeMonster is owned by optionMonster, a financial media company that publishes market news and commentary on options and stock trading. […]

Qualifying for a Mortgage

With the $8,000 first-time homeowner’s tax credit deadline approaching, many people are still trying to get in on the deal. If you’re in this boat, don’t assume that just having a down payment is enough (even though it’s a big help). Applying for a mortgage involves a thorough check into your finances to see if you really qualify for a mortgage loan. […]

How to Ace an Interview

Parade Magazine lists six steps to acing an interview as follows: Prepare, prepare, prepare. Keep your answers short. When in doubt, overdress. Be positive. Say to the interviewer, “I really want this job.” Follow up promptly. This is a great list IMO. My thoughts on each of these suggestions: 1. Of course you need to prepare. […]

The Personal Finance Hour, Episode 21: Job-Hunting Skills

On this week’s installment of The Personal Finance Hour, Jim and I spent the hour talking with Michael Hampton, the director of Career Development at Western Oregon University. (We also had a lively parallel chatroom discussion this week.) Network, network, network Our discussion stressed the importance of networking. […]

Owning a Home Isn’t Necessary for Building Wealth – Make Sure You Buy a Home for the Right Reasons

Home ownership is part of the American Dream and many personal finance pundits insist you need to become a homeowner in order to be financially successful and create wealth. While it’s true that owning a home can be a significant key to building long-term wealth and financial stability, that isn’t always the case. […]

How To Buy Short Sale Real Estate

It’s a buyer’s market in real estate. As a follow up to our article on How To Buy A Foreclosure, we discuss how short sale real estate purchases work. Buying A House In A Short Sale: Our Story Last fall, my spouse and I, with the help of our real estate agent, stumbled across a little gem of a home in the village of my hometown. […]

Currency Exchange & Other Tricks to Save More Money

Currency exchange is a thrifty tool in my home. To save money, my 11-year-old daughter has swapped five single dollars for a five-dollar-bill and has traded up for even larger denominations. She uses the larger bills to preserve capital.“When I see smaller bills, I think I have more money to spend,” my daughter said, adding that it’s tempting to buy treats with single dollars. […]

Free Cold Stone Creamery Ice Cream with Donation – Make A Wish Foundation

If you’re a fan of Cold Stone Creamery ice cream, fire up your ride because on Thursday, September 24th, you can get a free 3 oz. Make-A-Wish Creation between 5 PM and 8 PM with a donation. If you dare brave the inevitable lines for your 3 oz. treat, you will be richly rewarded for your trouble. […]

Business Card Doodles

Perhaps the most well-known post in the history of The Simple Dollar is Everything You Ever Really Needed to Know About Personal Finance on the Back of Five Business Cards. That article was borne out of my attempt to summarize my views on personal finance down to five small illustrations – and it was a big hit. Whenever I go to meetings, I tend to wind up with lots of business cards. […]

How to Survive a Market Decline

Here are some thoughts from the great personal finance book Grow Your Money!: 101 Easy Tips to Plan, Save, and Invest. […]

American Express Credit Card Limit Increase Tutorial

Regularly requesting credit limit increases, if done correctly, can increase your credit score and mitigate the effects of canceling credit cards. This post will explain how to navigate the menus of American Express’ online interface so that you can request a credit limit increase without triggering a hard credit inquiry. […]