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. […]

TurboTax Online Giveaway

It’s tax time once again, and that means many of you are in the process of filing your tax returns. The IRS just started processing returns that were initially delayed due to the new tax laws, but now that everybody is eligible to file things are kicking into high gear. […]

Help a Reader: Buying Car Insurance

Here are some questions a reader recently sent me: When purchasing auto insurance, I tend to just shop online and secured the lowest rates for my coverages.  I would assume most readers would do the same thing.  However, purchasing insurance through an agent is a common practice too.  For those that purchase insurance from an agent, why did you choose this decision, and do you feel any loyalty […]

Want to Buy a Home With No Money Down? Try a USDA Loan

Given the credit crunch and real estate free-fall of the last two years, a no-down-payment mortgage sounds anachronistic, if not downright unbelievable. But the fact is that thousands of Americans can still purchase a home with no money down, and they don't have to be veterans or military members. The U.S. […]

Reader Mailbag: Sad Child

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. Spouse with large savings 2. Split payment offer 3. Late taxes and debts 4. Elizabeth Warren 5. Timing of Roth IRA contributions 6. Funeral budgeting 7. Orange Loan from ING 8. Escrow account question 9. Loose change 10. […]

5 Multipurpose iPhone 4 Cases Fit for a Freelancer

If there was a T-shirt that said “I bought an iPhone 4 and all I got was this stupid bumper,” I’d wear it. Seriously, I hate the thing (the bumper, not the iPhone; I can't live without the latter). […]

Tax Tips When Looking for Work is Your Job

About the author: This is a guest article written by Leigh Mutert, CPA. Leigh is the manager of the H&R Block Get it Right Community, a blog that focuses on breaking down complex topics for taxpayers, and the manager of social media, corporate relations for H&R Block. […]