The Simple Dollar

Simple, applicable personal finance advice for the modern world.

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Latest Posts from The Simple Dollar (page 291)

An Example of Dividend Stock Investing

Several people have written to me recently asking me how exactly investing in dividend-paying stocks actually works. I thought I’d walk through this in a step-by-step fashion so that people can see how it actually works. First, a few caveats. Dividend stock investing is something I do with only a small part of our investments. […]

Reader Mailbag: Hostage Chess

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. Thoughts on Betterment 2. Swimming pool 3. Free puzzles 4. Evicting a child 5. HSA or FSA? 6. Charitable giving receipts 7. Credit limit increase? 8. Inexpensive ebooks 9. Frugality for other reasons 10. […]

The Fear

Every single time I sit down to write an article for The Simple Dollar, I think of two things. The first thing I think of is how incredibly scared I was when we hit our financial bottom. I had a seven month old baby at home to take care of, one that I was constantly afraid of failing as a father. I had what seemed like an insurmountable pile of debt sitting in front of me. […]

A Deeper Look at the Average American’s Budget

Recently, I came across this wonderful graphic over at The Credit Blog that spells out how the average American spends their paycheck: I actually pointed to a similar graphic a few years ago, but this is a revised one with updated figures. Let’s pull out the data, shall we? An average “consumer unit” in this picture consists of 2.5 people, of which 1.3 are wage earners. […]

Four Big Things To Do Today That Will Change Your Financial Situation

Want some action points today that can change your financial situation pretty rapidly? Willing to make a few big changes to your life? Here are four things you can do starting right now to make a radical shift in your finances and set you on a better track. 1. Cancel your cable or satellite service. Cancel it. Pay the termination fee if you have to. […]

Ten Pieces of Inspiration #114

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. This past week, our family has been talking about places in the world that we’d like to visit. As I often do, I pulled out a bunch of photographs of things I wanted to see in the world to show to my children. […]

Bulk Buying Versus Overconsumption

I love orange juice. I just love the stuff. When there’s orange juice in the fridge, I am constantly tempted to pull out the container and pour me a glass of it. This is particularly true when the container is mostly full, but when the container starts to get low, I slow down. I know that the juice will run out soon, so I savor it a bit. […]

There Are Twenty Enjoyable Things I Could Be Doing Right Now. Why Not Do The Cheapest One?

That’s the thought I have pretty often when I have a few free hours on the weekends. I usually have a ton of things that I’d like to be doing. I could go buy some books I’ve been wanting, then curl up with them. I could go golfing. I could go out to eat at a restaurant. […]

What Is Your Logjam?

During the months leading up to our financial meltdown in April 2006, I knew that there were some serious financial problems brewing in our life. We had a lot of debt and didn’t own any major assets and we seemed to be consistently spending less than we earned. […]