The Simple Dollar

Simple, applicable personal finance advice for the modern world.

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Latest Posts from The Simple Dollar (page 274)

The Sandwich Generation and You

Recently, I read a fascinating study by the Pew Research Center indicating that somewhere around one in seven adults have simultaneously provided financial assistance to a parent aged 65 and older and to one of their own children of any age in the past year. […]

The Story Others Tell About You

Recently, I read a fascinating interview of the film director Steven Soderberg on why he’s giving up on directing as a career path (thanks to kottke for the link). One particular piece stood out at me, though (my emphasis in bold):On the few occasions where I’ve talked to film students, one of the things I stress, in addition to learning your craft, is how you behave as a person. […]

Reader Mailbag: Reader Emails

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. When bills exceed income 2. Super Bowl party planning 3. Lessons from piano 4. Thoughts on 2012 5. Handling a pay raise 6. Shipping a package 7. Deferred compensation 8. Celebrity fandom 9. Buying a home impatiently? 10. […]

Putting a Value on Reliability: When Is It Time to Trade In Your Car?

A friend of mine has been driving the same car for more than a decade. For most of that time, it’s been reliable as a rock. It’s started like a charm on some frightfully cold mornings and it’s only rarely needed any repairs.Over the last year, though, lots of little problems have started cropping up. […]

The Simple Dollar Weekly Roundup: Art Supply Edition

Our children engage in so many art projects that we keep a small corner in our dining room set aside for their miscellaneous art supplies and in-progress art projects.Pretty much every single day, our children clear off some of the dining room table and cut/paint/draw/build something.The only tricky part with this is that they actually manage to run out of some of their supplies. […]

How to Replace Your Computer Inexpensively

For most of us, the desire to replace our computer comes about due to one of two things. Either there’s a hardware failure or there’s a need to run some application that doesn’t run well on our older computer.In either case, I’ve found myself in a position to replace my computer twice since I’ve owned my own. […]

Five Steps to Escaping the Nightmare

Mel writes in:For the past six months, I’ve been getting letters from creditors in the mail. I don’t want to read them because the thought of facing them makes me sick to my stomach with worry and I don’t sleep well for days, so I just throw them in the trash as soon as I get them. […]

My Five Tenets of Financial Independence

“Financial independence” is a term that I often use on The Simple Dollar to describe my primary long-term goal when it comes to my finances. The catch with a phrase like “financial independence” is that it can have such drastically different meanings to different people.For example, some people consider themselves financially independent if they’re able to cover all their monthly bills. […]

Reader Mailbag: Ice Storm

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. Finding my 401(k) 2. Giving to church or charity? 3. Mortgage schedule 4. Leftover standby 5. To mortgage or not? 6. Frugal solitaire activities 7. Monthly service contracts 8. Making your own clothes 9. […]

The Beauty of the Open-Ended Creative Project

My children spent Friday afternoon and Saturday morning designing their own boardgame. The supplies they used for the game design were simple – several pieces of paper, a bit of glue, and a box of crayons.With each iteration, the game became more compelling. It started off as a Candyland variant, except using dice for movement. […]