Five Cent Nickel

Written by a man who has been meticulously recording his finances since 1997 (stored in Quicken), Five Cent Nickel is one of the oldest and most respected blogs around. This blog often provides great commentary on—and summaries of—useful financial tips featured by other publications. If you’re too lazy to read every little money article out there, just stop by Five Cent Nickel and get the cream of the crop.

Latest Posts from Five Cent Nickel (page 153)

FHA Loans, Mortgage Insurance Premiums, and My Extra Income

Some good news has come up in the last couple of weeks, as I’ve happened upon a temporary job for the next couple of months. Since we’re buying a house, we looked at what we can do with the extra income. For background, we’re getting a 30-year fixed rate FHA mortgage for our town house. This means that our interest rate will remain the same through over the life of the mortgage. […]

Banks Reducing Overdraft Fees

According to MarketWatch, Chase and Bank of America are relaxing their overdraft rules. More specifically, both banks will now require you to opt in to their overdraft protection plans, and they are also limiting the transaction amounts that will trigger an overdraft fee. At Chase, you’ll no longer be charged a fee if you overdraw your account by $5 or less. […]

Create Your Own “Extended Warranty Fund”

Extended warranties are, almost without exception, a bad deal for consumers. In fact, according to Consumer Reports: “Retailers are pushing hard to get you to buy extended warranties, or service plans, because they’re cash cows. Stores keep 50 percent or more of what they charge for warranties. […]

Weekly Roundup – Actually Weekly Edition

After months of very sporadic “weekly” roundups, I’m actually doing a second one in a row this week. Things continue to be exceptionally busy around here, though, so don’t be surprised if I go back to my old ways. […]

Free Museum Admission on National Museum Day

If you’re looking for something fun and cheap to do this weekend, don’t forget that Saturday is National Museum Day. That means you can get free admission to dozens of museums across the country. Click here for a full list of participating museums. If you find one that you want to visit, simply print out the admission card and take it with you. […]

Pay Off Debt or Invest?

The other day, Matt Jabs asked if you should invest while you’re in debt. This is an interesting question, and one I thought worthy of tackling myself. Penny wise, pound foolish For starters, you probably shouldn’t be investing while in debt unless you can reasonably expect to outperform the interest rates that you’re paying. […]

Top Five Time-Wasting Activities

Time = Money… …so if you’re wasting time, you’re wasting money. Keep this old adage in mind as you read through this article. “Time is free, but it’s priceless. You can’t own it, but you can use it. You can’t keep it, but you can spend it. […]

FDIC Insurance Coverage: Is Your Money Safe?

I’ve written in the past about the importance of banking only with FDIC-insured institutions (or NCUA-insured credit unions), and also of respecting the FDIC insurance limits. That’s all well and good, but… Is the FDIC running out of money? If you’ve been following the financial news over the past day or so, you’re likely aware that the FDIC insurance fund is running low. […]

Qualifying for a Mortgage

With the $8,000 first-time homeowner’s tax credit deadline approaching, many people are still trying to get in on the deal. If you’re in this boat, don’t assume that just having a down payment is enough (even though it’s a big help). Applying for a mortgage involves a thorough check into your finances to see if you really qualify for a mortgage loan. […]

Dealing With a Collection Agency

A reader that I’ll call Mary recently wrote in with the following question about dealing with a collection agency: We were in a horrible car accident last year and our car insurance just now paid the car towing company. This company turned our bill over to collection agency which listed this on our credit report. Now… Who does what? […]