Using CDARS to Protect Large Deposits

Have you ever heard of the Certificate of Deposit Account Registry Service (CDARS)? If you haven’t, you’re not alone. CDARS is a private, for-profit service that spreads large deposits (anywhere from $10k above the FDIC insurance limit up to a maximum $50M) across numerous banks. […]

Way to Save #142: Inexpensive Decorating

Sometimes you just need to change the look of a room. A new tablecloth can transform a dining room, and you’ll probably find one at the Salvation Army for $5. Plants are great decorations that you can get free by exchanging clippings with your friends. A plywood circle sitting on a round trash can look [...] […]

Book Review: Get Financially Naked: How to Talk Money with Your Honey

By Xin Lu It has been reported over and over that money is the number one cause of conflict and stress in relationships. This is precisely the reason authors Manisha Thakor and Sharon Kedar wrote Get Financially Naked: How to Talk Money with Your Honey. […]

Reader Mailbag #92

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. […]

3 Interesting Coins You Might Find in Your Change

It’s becoming increasingly rare, but once in a while it is possible to find interesting coins in your pocket change. Professional and amateur coin collectors tend to snap these up so the coins are taken out of circulation, and many of the most interesting coins are aging and damaged. […]

Financial Balance Lets You Enjoy Tomorrow AND Today

This article is the 11th of a 14-part series that explores the core tenets of Get Rich Slowly. It originally appeared at Soul Shelter in a slightly different form. For more than a decade, I was buried in debt. My relationship with money was poor. I earned a decent salary, but I couldn’t seem to get ahead. […]

What a Rip Off

Here's a story that transpired a few weekends ago. […]

Weekly Roundup – Healthy Living Edition

Another week, another weekly roundup… Before we get to the links, I just wanted to share with you a project that I’ve been working on… It’s a blog devoted to health and fitness. I actually launched this back in 2008, but had to put it on hold when things got too busy. I revived it last month, and will be adding fresh content to it from here on out. […]

Free Savings Account For Your Savings Goals: SmartyPig Review

When it comes to savings tools, I’ve seen quite a number of gimmicks out there from various web sites, companies and financial institutions that try to entice people to save more. For the most part, I think that these tools and ideas are quite helpful, and do benefit the end consumer. […]

Review: Lifelines for Money Misfortunes

Every other Sunday, The Simple Dollar reviews a personal finance book. A couple years ago, I reviewed Stephen Pollan and Mark Levine’s earlier book Die Broke. I found it really interesting for the first half – which focuses on investing in yourself – and completely faulty in the second half, which talks about specific investment choices. […]

Citi Holiday Student Bonus Cashback Promotion

Citi is running a college student holiday promotion from now until January 15th, 2010, on their Citi mtvU Platinum Select and Citi Forward credit cards. From until January 15th, new cardmembers who are college students who apply and are approved for the cards have the chance to earn 3,600 bonus points for paying their bill on-time and for staying under the credit limit for three months. […]

Personal Finance 101: What Does FDIC Insurance Really Mean?

One of the biggest things I encourage people to look for when they open a bank account is that the bank is FDIC insured. Most banks operating in the United States offer this insurance. In an era where people are more than a little worried about bank failures and the like, FDIC insurance is vital. But what exactly is it? Charlie writes in: What exactly is FDIC insurance? How does it work? […]

Way to Save #141: Stop Being So Clean

Americans can be obsessive when it comes to cleaning our clothes. Result? High dry-cleaning bills, high utility bills and high clothing bills. Nobody’s suggesting you should use body odor to cull your circle of friends, but the fact is that many items, especially the expensive-to-dry-clean-kind can often be worn more before we have them cleaned. [...] […]

How's Your Giving This Year?

For those of you new to Free Money Finance, I post on The Bible and Money every Sunday. Here's why. We've talked a lot about what the Bible has to say about giving (tithing, giving generously, being a cheerful giver, etc.). […]

Free $10 on Amazon (or Why to Read Fine Print)

By Elizabeth Sanberg Last week I ordered a GPS on There was a "special offer" for a free Wired magazine subscrption and a couple bucks worth of free mp3s I was happy to take advantage of the MP3 credit, but a Wired magazine subscription? Not something I would necessarily take advantage of. Fast forward a few days. […]

Better Budgeting Software: YNAB or Quicken?

I recently received an email from Reader Donald asking if I could do a direct comparison between You Need A Budget (YNAB) and Quicken. […]

The Simple Dollar Time Machine: December 5, 2009

Many newer readers of The Simple Dollar haven’t been exposed to the hundreds of great articles in the archives of the site, so this is a weekly series that highlights the five best posts from one year ago this week, two years ago this week, and three years ago this week. […]

The Joy of Buying a New Car: 9 Car Buying Tips

By Vincent Scordo The process of buying a car is just not what it used to be. Gone are the days of brand loyalty, limited selection, and awkward and long-winded pricing negotiations. […]

Way to Save #140: Buy Yesterday's Technology

One of the fundamental ways to save money is to buy yesterday’s technology. An older computer may not play Solitaire at the speed of light, but it will probably be perfectly adequate for the tasks normal people use computers for. And it will cost a fraction of the price of the newest, fastest models. Buying [...] […]