College and Cost

When it rains, it pours. Here's yet another piece on the value of college and the costs associated with it.But this one is absurd for the title alone: In Applying to College, Is Cost a Factor? Really? We have a writer for the Wall Street Journal asking if cost is even a factor when picking a college. Is that what it's come to? […]

The Buying Decision

One of my favorite places to visit is Prairie Lights Bookstore in Iowa City, Iowa. […]

How Does Frugality Translate Into Wealth?

Success in personal finance is really a matter of the mind. It’s about having the awareness to see all of the choices you’re making and having the fortitude to consistently make good choices in terms of your money. One of the big challenges, particularly for people first starting out, is to see the connection between frugality and wealth. […]

Reader Stories: How I built up the courage to quit a promising career with a six-figure salary

This reader story is from a longtime GRS reader Sumitha, who blogs at Some reader stories contain general advice; others are examples of how a GRS reader achieved financial success or failure. These stories feature folks with all levels of financial maturity and income. Want to submit your own reader story? Here’s how. […]

The House That Is Too Small

Once upon a time, Sarah and I lived in a two bedroom apartment. The two bedrooms were pretty small. When we had our first child, we made the second bedroom into a nursery and, eventually, into a little boy’s room. […]

Credit Karma Review

I have had a number of people ask me about Credit Karma. I have used it a number of times to check my credit score and like it, so I figured I would go ahead and write a Credit Karma Review for all of you. When people start to repair bad credit or even if you […] […]

Ten Pieces of Inspiration #126

Each week, I highlight ten things each week that inspired me to greater financial, personal, and professional success. Hopefully, they will inspire you as well. 1. […]

Credit Card Basics: Everything You Should Know

The credit card is one of the most divisive products among all the financial tools available. Ask around and you’re sure to find people who pay all their expenses using credit cards as well as others who swear the products are the embodiment of pure evil. Opinions among financial experts and thought leaders are just as mixed. […]

The Fear of Taxes Shouldn’t Keep You from Earning More

I get notes pretty regularly from readers who express concern that earning more won’t actually gain them anything. “Why should I earn more than I’m making if Uncle Sam is just going to take it all?” That perception is a complete myth. Yes, you will be paying more in taxes if you make more and, yes, you’ll likely be paying a higher percentage of your income in taxes. […]

Your Take: Ever Research Your Zip Code?

Yesterday, Miranda wrote a post that talked about how marketers are using zip codes to reach new customers. It made me think about the research we’ve done when looking at real estate investments (we dabble a little here and there). One interesting tool I wanted to share with you is ZipSkinny. […]

Ask the Readers: Do you plan for the good times as well as the bad?

This is a guest post from personal finance writer Gwendolyn Pearce, who has written previously on chicken coops and cooking challenges. In a recent post, staff writer Lisa Aberle provided an excellent outline of the kind of financial information and preparation you should provide for your loved ones in the event of your incapacitation or death. […]

7 Places Teens (and Adults) Can Learn About Money

We all want to encourage financial literacy in our teens (and ourselves). But what exactly does that mean, how is financial literacy best accomplished, and where can you go to learn? […]

Best Money Tips: All You Need to Know About Saving for Retirement

Welcome to Wise Bread's Best Money Tips Roundup! Today we found some stellar articles on all you need to know about saving for retirement, personal finance experiences for older kids, and average tax refunds. Top 5 Articles All you need to know about saving for retirement — When it comes to retirement, you should be saving 10% to 15% of your income. […]

Overdraft fees soared to $32 billion in 2012

This post, written by Anthony Fontana, is from out partner site Nobody likes wasting money, do they? Actually, according to a news report from Moebs Services, banks, credit unions and thrift institutions made $32 billion on overdraft fees in 2012. That’s right, $32,000,000,000! That’s a lot of zeros. […]

Get It in Writing: A Quick Guide to Agreements and Contracts

Everybody's heard that worn-out piece of wisdom — get any deal you make in writing because something could always go south with the deal. We hear it regularly, but not all of us do it. It's a bit of a hassle, especially for small agreements. It doesn't make sense to require a contract if you're paying a neighborhood kid a little cash to mow your yard, after all. […]

Help a Reader: 401k vs. Roth

Here's an email I recently received from a reader: My company just announced a series of changes they are making to our benefits, including our 401(k) plan. Currently, they match $0.50 on the dollar up to 3% of your annual salary (so, if you contribute 6%, they kick in 3%), and they do this with every paycheck. […]

Lip Service

It is really, really easy to fall into a trap of paying lip service to the things we think ought to be important but that we don’t actually find important in our day to day lives. “Oh, I should be spending less money,” says someone waiting in line for a large coffee and a breakfast pastry at a local coffee shop. “Oh, I should be spending more time with the kids,” texts someone to their sister whil […]

Elimination of the Payroll Tax Cut Reduced Consumer Spending

In 2010, Congress passed the Tax Hike Prevention Act, which among other things reduced the payroll tax from 6.2% to 4.2% starting in 2011. For two years, workers saw higher take-home income than they would have had the law never existed, and consumers responded favorably by using the extra money throughout the two years to save, invest, pay off debt, and spend. […]