The Simple Dollar

Simple, applicable personal finance advice for the modern world.

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Latest Posts from The Simple Dollar (page 290)

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. […]

Retirement Investment Obsession

Vitaly writes in:My problem is that I can’t stop looking at my retirement accounts. Whenever I see an investment option that’s doing a little bit better than whatever I’m doing, I start to feel sick to my stomach and I panic and I have to switch my investments over. […]

Career Risk Without Risking Family Finances

A few days ago, I had a long conversation with an old friend about a difficult career decision he was facing. […]

Ten Pieces of Inspiration #110

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. Henry Stimson on trust“The only way to make a man trustworthy is to trust him.” – Henry StimsonIt can be very difficult to extend trust to someone that you don’t know or, even worse, someone with a less-than-stellar reputation. […]

Online Buying, Impulse Control, and Amazon.com

Recently, I listened to a story on NPR (for the life of me, I can’t find a link to it on their website) where developers at Amazon.com were discussing their goal in shaving seconds off of the time it takes for a person to come to their site with a desire in their head and to have purchased that item. For them, the goal is thirty seconds.Think about that for a second. […]

Adding Flex to a Budget

When Sarah and I first started our financial recovery, we tried out several different budgeting tactics.We made up a very detailed budget in a spreadsheet. We split up our expenses into several different specific categories and then, whenever there was an expense, we noted which category it came from.We tried an “envelope” system. […]

Training Your Intuition

Most of the time, when I have to make a decision, I rely on my instincts to make a good choice. […]

Reader Mailbag: Coffee Can Savings

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. Combining finances with risky partner 2. Brother exploiting sister 3. Using digital images from phones 4. Containing political rage 5. Extra money in the budget 6. Hand washing routine 7. Organizing student loans 8. […]

Buying Another Before You Can Enjoy What You Have

As I’ve mentioned before, several years ago, I was an avid collector of DVDs and vintage sports trading cards. At one point, our DVD collection reached over 1,000 discs. […]