The Simple Dollar

Simple, applicable personal finance advice for the modern world.

Profile of The Simple Dollar

Latest Posts from The Simple Dollar

A Retirement Tax Trick You May Not Know About

Whether it’s a gift to your local church or a nonprofit environmental group, setting up a charitable remainder trust can help lower your tax bill in retirement. Photo: Steven Depolo In my recent post I highlighted the looming problem that taxes will create for many investors when they retire due to the bulk of retirement assets being held in tax-deferred accounts. […]

Personal Finance 101: What the HELOC Is a Home Equity Line of Credit?

Many homeowners use a home equity line of credit to finance big remodeling projects, like installing a new bathroom — but you’re not required to use the funds on your house. Photo: Cheryl Marland Need access to a lot of cash at an interest rate much lower than credit cards? Do you still want the flexibility to take only as much as you need, when you need it? […]

How Making Meals in Advance Saves Time and Money: Make-Ahead Lasagna

Earlier this week, I spent about an hour preparing four pans of lasagna at the same time, with the intent of eating one pan as a family dinner and freezing the other three for future use. I’ve often talked about making meals in advance and how it saves both time and money, so I thought it was time to show you a real-world example of how I did this. […]

Personal Finance 101: What Is a Certificate of Deposit?

What does ‘laddering’ CDs mean, anyway? We explain that strategy and more. Photo: van Ort If you’re looking for a place to stash your money for a longer period of time than a regular checking or savings account, you may have investigated a certificate of deposit, or CD. […]

Questions About Tuna, Bicycles, Cruises, Cruel Coworkers and More!

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. Investing and taxes 2. Ethics and class action lawsuits 3. First adult bicycle 4. Cheap versus frugal 5. Disney Cruise suggestions 6. The value of staying put 7. Going back to school 8. Poisonous coworker 9. […]

Fed Up With Verizon and AT&T? Try One of These Cheap Cell Phone Plans Instead

Photo: Robert Scoble Are you starting to despise your Verizon Wireless cellphone bill? If so, you’re probably not alone. According to CBS News, the average Verizon phone bill surged to a level never seen before late last year – $148 per customer, per month. In case you don’t want to do the math, that’s a whopping of $1,776 per year. […]

11 Strategies to Minimize Shopping or Avoid It Altogether

Want to avoid spending more than you meant to at the store? Take enough money to cover your planned purchases, and then leave your wallet — and the rest of your cash — at home. Photo: Guy Sie I have found that, time and time again, the act of going shopping causes almost all of the money leaks in my life. […]

What’s Your Money Personality?

How sharp are your financial instincts? Do you boast a banker’s savvy sense for cents, or is your freewheeling financial style more care-free than careful? Take our quiz to discover your money personality: Powered by Interact How to Make Saving a Habit Developing good money habits can help make successful finance choices become second-nature. […]

Some Thoughts on the ‘American Dream’

Are you working toward your own version of prosperity and the American Dream… or Hollywood’s? […]