Friday Finance Findings for February 18th

I don’t know where this past week went, but it’s Friday already. Not that it’s a bad thing, but when you don’t get all of your work done it is a bit of a bummer. It’s mostly been a lot of behind the scenes work on the site. We’ve moved to a far better server, URL structure was changed, better performance tweaks put into place. […]

Free Money Finance March Money Madness, Round 1, Posts 57-60

Here we go with the first round of Free Money Finance March Money Madness (to follow all the action click on my March Money Madness category link and scroll down to read all the posts involved in this subject.) I've listed each "game" (one post versus another) in segments along with the wording provided by the author when the post was submitted. […]

Is a College Degree a Piece of Paper … or Something More?

So often, when I see advice regarding a college education, people speak of a college degree as some sort of magic ticket that will raise your income level. “A college degree is worth $500,000 more income over a person’s lifetime” or something to that effect is constantly touted. This idea often pops up in the questions I get from readers. […]

5 Household Fixes You Should Stop Paying Others For

Spring is right around the corner, and with it comes the season for cleaning, fixing, and repairing things around the house. […]

Adventures in Retail Tedium

I usually try to avoid shopping retail for a long list of reasons. The prices offend me, the crowds annoy me, the selection overwhelms me, and often the quality disappoints me. A few days ago, however, I was forced by chance and time constraints to venture inside a large retail clothing chain — and that’s when the fun began. […]

Best Money Tips: Be a Tourist in Your Own Town

Welcome to Wise Bread's Best Money Tips Roundup! Today we found some amazing articles on how to be a tourist in your own town, things worth haggling over, and surviving an apartment sale. Top 5 Articles Budget Travel: How to Be a Tourist In Your Own Town — To be a tourist in your city, sign up for a tour! […]

The Upside of Mass Layoffs

Getting fired sucks; there’s no getting around that. But when you’re fired along with a bunch of other people at once, it’s a different story. In corporate speak, they’re called reorganizations. We call them bloodbaths. Typically there are some high-level things in play when a mass layoff goes down. […]

Your Take: How Will You File Your Taxes?

When it comes to preparing and filing your taxes, there are a variety of options. You can prepare your taxes electronically with software like TurboTax and efile for a few dollars. You can prepare you taxes on paper, double check with software like TurboTax, and then mail in your return (for those keeping track at home, this basically means you prepare your taxes twice). […]

Get a Free Flight With the All-New Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card from Chase

Speaking of frequent flyer credit cards… While looking at the new Southwest Airlines frequent flyer program, I ran across the All-New Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Plus® Credit Card from Chase. I’ve been digging around for info on Southwest because they’re expanding into our market in the near future, and I’m looking forward to having access to their flights again. […]

Redbox vs. iTunes vs. Netflix vs. Blockbuster

This post is from staff writer April Dykman. Sometimes I think that Netflix was the best thing to ever happen to me (er, besides my wonderful husband, of course). You see, when I was a Blockbuster customer, I was notoriously bad about racking up late fees. I would flat-out forget I even had a movie to return. […]

Here’s why auto-pay isn’t quite set and forget

Paying bills by mailing out checks was common when I was growing up (1970s and 1980s), but no longer.  Now, most companies have the option to accept payment by credit card or ACH debit (and if they don’t, you wonder what’s wrong with them).  Not only that, but you can make arrangements with the companies to have them bill you, and collect from you, automatically. Automating the paying of bills has […]

Do You Have an Embarrassing Work Story?

The Today Show highlights some embarrassing work stories as follows: “I called my boss ‘my love’ by complete accident.” "While speaking at a business event, I fell off the stage." "I sent an offer letter to the wrong candidate." "I said something inappropriate about my boss and found out he was standing right behind me." “I went into the ladies’ bathroom by mistake.” (We’r […]

Star Money Articles and Carnivals for the Week of Feb 14

Let's start off with a reminder: FMF is on Facebook. I post pieces there that usually aren't on FMF. It's a great way to connect and get some extra money advice/news if you're on Facebook quite often. Here are some pieces I found especially worthwhile and some of the carnivals Free Money Finance was in this week and my posts that were included: EDITOR'S CHOICE! […]

401K Contribution Limits For 2011 & 2010

I thought I’d go over some of the contribution limits for the 401(k). This is one aspect of the tax code that hasn’t changed over the past few years, but let’s take a closer look anyway. It’s always good to review some of the rules behind tax efficient investing for retirement. We can expect any [...]401K Contribution Limits For 2011 & 2010 […]

Review: The Money Book For Freelancers

This post is from staff writer Sierra Black. Sierra writes about frugality, sustainable living, and getting her kids to eat kale at It took me a long time to get through The Money Book for Freelancers, Part-Timers, and the Self-Employed. That’s not usually high praise for a book, but in this case I mean it to be. It took me a long time to read because it was so darn useful. […]

Becoming Wealthy Despite a Market Meltdown

In my post titled Slow and Steady Saving Still Pays, one reader left a great comment that I wanted to share with you all. Specifically, he was addressing the "you can't save/invest and become wealthy like you used to because the market is so bad" crowd. His comment:  I started at 22 with investing/saving over 10%+ of my check, increased to 15%+ by age 23 1/2 and 20%~ by age 27. […]

The Rush: Feeling Good About Bad Financial Decisions

A few weeks ago, I had to go inside to pay at a gas station. A lady in front of me in line purchased $20 worth of scratch-off lottery tickets and began scratching them immediately, moving off to the side to let me pay. I’m of the math-oriented belief that lottery tickets are not worth your while, so I was just polite when I asked the lady if she has good luck playing the tickets. […]

FMF Advertiser on CNBC Tonight

Over the six (in April!) years this blog has been running, I've had many different advertisers and sponsors (FYI, I give all the proceeds from the site to charity, in case you didn't know). I'm thankful for all of them, but one stands out from the pack. Moose Tracks ice cream has been a sponsor from day #1 and is still a sponsor of this blog. I'm thankful for their support. […]

PenFed Premium Travel Rewards American Express® Card $200 Bonus

The most important thing to evaluate when shopping around for a travel rewards credit card is the quality of the rewards program, particularly when compared to other similar cards. The best travel rewards cards offer much more than the typical one cent per point conversion rate. It’s also important to look at the pricing in the form of interest rate. […]

Government to Issue Debit Cards for Tax Refunds

Plastic is a very real part of our society. Indeed, cash is rarely used as we pay with credit or debit. The government has long let taxpayers use credit cards to pay their taxes, and now the government is trying to decide if it is worth it to issue debit cards to those expecting refunds. […]