The Simple Dollar

Simple, applicable personal finance advice for the modern world.

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Latest Posts from The Simple Dollar (page 289)

When You Repeatedly Fail at Financial Change

During 2004, 2005, and early 2006, I made a lot of feeble attempts at turning our finances around. I’d make these little commitments to myself to stop spending so much money or to start paying off credit cards. […]

Ten Pieces of Inspiration #181

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. Seneca on life’s burdens “I ask not for a lighter burden, but broader shoulders.” – Seneca Everyone has pain. Everyone has challenges. Life is about your ability to deal with the pain and the challenges. 2. […]

Reducing the Cost of a Summer Road Trip

This summer, my family is going on a very long road trip to multiple national parks, a stop at Disneyworld, visits with relatives, and many little side trips and journeys along the way. We are going to see large parts of the United States and do it all in an automobile. No matter how we slice it, it’s going to be fairly expensive. […]

The Small Windfall

Every once in a while, I’ll get a big windfall. For example, not too long ago, one of my books was reprinted in Korean and I received a surprisingly nice advance from that, almost completely out of the blue. When I get a nice windfall like that, I usually do smart things with it. […]

Where Will You Be If Nothing Changes?

Quite often, I encourage people to visualize their future in five years or ten years. I usually suggest that people try to visualize their perfect future so that they have a goal to work towards. However, some people don’t thrive on looking forward at a goal. […]

Reader Mailbag: Personal Finance Isn’t an Exact Science

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. Buy it for life spatula? 2. Savings question 3. Fun without spending 4. Buying and selling laptops 5. Financial independence and children 6. Teenage entrepreneurial guidance 7. 1% maintenance on houses? 8. […]

The Unhappy Call

A few days ago, I called my internet service provider. I had an issue I wanted to discuss with their customer service people. Don’t get me wrong – I actually really like my internet service provider. They have fast service when there’s a problem and there’s rarely a problem. The speeds are consistent and don’t vary much at all throughout the day. The problem is that they’re expensive. […]

The Simple Dollar Weekly Roundup: The Circle Edition

Recently, I read Dave Eggers’ wonderful novel The Circle, which, like every great novel, manages to simultaneously work as a page-turner and as a thought-provoker. The big ideas behind The Circle focus on privacy in the era of the internet and big data and branch out into the meaning of social networks like Twitter and Facebook and the intrusion and lack of privacy brought on by data collection. T […]

6 Ways to Save Money at Summer Concerts and Music Festivals

This article first appeared at U.S. News and World Report Money. Bonnaroo. CMA. Firefly. Lollapalooza. The summer calendar is filled with amazing festivals for music fans, where attendees have the opportunity to hear live performances from dozens of great musical acts in just a few days. Unfortunately, attending concerts and festivals can really add up. […]

Buffett’s Prediction Versus the Past: Why Can’t We Expect 10% Returns?

A few days ago, I was running some errands and listening to a real estate guy on talk radio. He was arguing about investments with a caller and along the way, he made a statement that stuck with me. He said that if you go back and look at the history of the stock market, it’s returned about 10% a year and that we should project that much going forward. That number stuck with me. […]