10 Scams to Avoid in 2011

You work hard for your money: an honest day’s work for an honest paycheck. Unfortunately, not everyone has the same work ethic or honest streak that you do. […]

5 Places to Get Cheaper Diapers

I am a mom of five, and diapers have been a big part of my monthly budget for years now. Regardless of whether I’m diapering one or two at a time, I hate to spend more than I have to. […]

Buying Your Father’s Term Life Insurance Policy

Over the holidays, Reader John emailed me a question about secondary sales of life insurance policies. He had learned that his father was going to cancel his term-life insurance policy at the end of the month and he was considering “buying” it off his father by paying the premiums and collecting the death benefit. […]

Underachievement and the All-or-Nothing Mindset

This post is from staff writer April Dykman. There have been a slew of great articles lately on why resolutions fail, and I agree wholeheartedly with them. […]

Financial Tips for Couples in 2011

While you don’t have to wait for January to start working on your finances, this is often a great time to try a new approach. If you’re thinking of making some changes, you may be wondering where to start. Here are some ideas for optimizing your finances. Clean up your bank accounts If you have multiple bank accounts, make sure they’re all necessary and doing their job. […]

The Beauty of Index Funds

As most of you know, I'm a fan of investing in index funds. I've been using them as my primary investment vehicle for many years now. (for those of you interested, here's specifically what I invest in.) A month or so ago JD at Get Rich Slowly talked about index funds in detail. Here are the highlights of what he said: Index funds have very small expense ratios. […]

What’s with all the begging online?

Starting a website up in “spare time” with the purpose of developing expertise and getting a Plan B going is a great idea.  The Plan A job can go away at any time.  Actually, doing just about anything that provides a product or service — whether it’s holding a sign or painting numbers on curbs — is a good thing to do. Doing something productive should be a better option than looking for a handout, […]

Ask the Readers: Are You Optimistic About 2011?

According to a recent CNN article, a growing number of economists think 2011 will finally bring what we've been hoping for: More jobs and a self-sustaining recovery. But on the other hand, we all know friends and family members who are still struggling in this economy. Are you optimistic about 2011? […]

Happy Blogiversary! Year Three on Squawkfox!

Bloggers are a bunch of weirdos. Most write stuff online for free, some post photos for kicks, and many celebrate a yearly anniversary called a Blogiversary for fun. […]

Bill Paying Strategies To Help Find Your Spending Balance

We share a few tips to help you stop overspending now. When the recession hit, frugal became the “new black” and it was hip to thrift. The average savings rate jumped from .08% in 2005 to 7.6% in early 2009. But as we begin to emerge from the recession, will Americans go back to our overspending ways and resurrect their poor spending habits? Sadly, it appears so. […]

Charities Supported by FMF in 2010

As many of you know, I give away all the proceeds from Free Money Finance to charity each year. Everything from every sponsor, every affiliate, every sale, every everything. Every single penny goes to charity. With this year's donations, we're now close to $300,000 given since this blog started. […]

21 Best Money Blogs of 2010

Money Help for Christians just published his list of the 21 best money blogs of 2010 based on results from the Best of Money Carnival. Want to guess who was #1? :-) I'd like to really be the best personal finance blog out there, but I think this list is a bit skewed because it only includes blogs that submit to the Best of Money Carnival (which leaves out a lot of great sites). […]

When Investment Banks Fail, What Happens to the Little Guy?

One of the most frightening things (to me) about the 2008 investment bank failures of Lehman Brothers and Bear Stearns coupled with the fraud of Bernie Madoff is the impact it had on individual investors who had used these groups as a means to invest. […]

Life After Salary: COBRA vs. Individual Health Insurance

One month ago, I notified my boss at the corporation where I worked that I would be leaving. I was headed for the new frontier. Leaving my salary and benefits behind, I looked to the horizon and contemplated what I needed to do in order to keep my life secure. […]

Itemizing Taxpayers Must Wait to File Tax Returns

You know how it took until the 11th hour for Congress to extend the Bush era tax cuts? One of the consequences of that late change to the tax structure was that the IRS had been preparing for the the tax cut to expire. […]

What We Got for Christmas

Inquiring minds want to know, right? What did FMF and family get for Christmas? Here are some of the items we each received: FMF Real Madrid jersey (Google them if you don't know who they are) Manchester United t-shirt (Google them if you don't know who they are) Wow Hits 2011 CD Mrs. […]

When Talk Is Cheap: Ways to Save Money On Your Phone Bill

Overpriced data packages and pay-by-the-minute cell phone service can cost the average family a pretty penny.  In fact, the Utility Consumers’ Action Network, a San Diego consumer advocacy group, reported that the average cell phone user pays $3.02 a minute.  Customers paying for “anytime minutes” only use a third of the time allotted to them by their service providers.  If that w […]

Investing for Future Income: Start Early, Save Often

It’s been said that every dollar that you save (and invest) during your twenties will provide one dollar of investment income during your sixties. But is this really true? I recently ran across an interesting test of this idea, and the results were enlightening. Using the historical S&P 500 total return data compiled by Prof. […]

Reader Mailbag: The New Year

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to five word summaries. Click on the number to jump straight down to the question. 1. What does “savings” mean? 2. Getting out of a lemon 3. Dealing with multiple debts 4. Is a prenup needed? 5. Investing help 6. Best movie of 2010 7. Working on a goal 8. Saving for someone else’s college 9. […]