The Simple Dollar

Simple, applicable personal finance advice for the modern world.

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Latest Posts from The Simple Dollar (page 294)

Reader Mailbag: Diagnosing Computer Problems

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. IRA or savings account? 2. Rental properties 3. Why risk money? 4. Aggressive mortgage repayment? 5. The Billion Dollar Bracket 6. Freebies and ethics 7. Emergency fund question 8. Short term investing 9. Beard trimming 10. […]

Five Inexpensive Gym Alternatives for Exercise

In my area, the cheapest gym I can find for exercise is one that charges about $15 per month and charges additional fees for every class you might take. The $15 per month just gets you in the door and gives you access to the facilities. Other gyms that offer training programs and such accelerate far above that. […]

Swinging for the Fences or Settling for a Single

Several different books I’ve read in the last few years – Malcolm Gladwell’s Outliers being one – have argued that the best way (without an inherent genetic advantage) to become an “outlier” in a particular skill is to practice a tremendous amount. […]

A Day of Consumption

One of my favorite achievements during my early financial recovery was discovering the power of “money free weekends” and, later, “money free weeks.” Money free weekends are a really powerful way to keep your spending in check – and it’s also a great way to discover free things that you enjoy doing. Here are 100 free things to do during such a weekend if you want to try it out. […]

Ten Pieces of Inspiration #170

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. I’ve been reading a great deal about Bill Gates in the last week, so this week’s edition is heavy with inspirational quotes from him. The work he’s done with the Gates Foundation has been amazing. 1. […]

The Challenge of Frugality and Good Nutrition

The other day, I went through a local grocery store flyer and marked items as either being “healthy” or “unhealthy.” I was curious as to whether items on sale were items that provided good long-term nutrition for people or not. Of course, the first problem is defining what “healthy” and “unhealthy” means. […]

How to Find the Best Savings Account in 2014

Looking for places to grow your money without much risk is difficult these days, but finding the best savings account might be a good place to start. Although your money will be safe there, the average American is hardly capitalizing on any gains. According to CNN Money, the average savings account last year had only a 0.06% APY (annual percentage yield, or interest). […]

Personal Finance 101: Percentages

Markie writes in: My biggest struggle with personal finance is the numbers. I am terrible at math. When I look at percentages and stuff, I just want to lock down and tune out. This is actually a pretty common thing. One of the brightest people I know – an amazing writer who is a creator of endless good ideas – struggles with the math needed to balance her checkbook. […]

Ten Useful Things To Do With Your Tax Return Money

We try really hard to not get a tax return each year. For the last several years, we’ve usually had to pay some money on April 15, which is fine with us – that means more money for us throughout the year. For many people, March and April means that a sizable check will arrive in the mail. […]

Reader Mailbag: Reusing Things

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. Cash out of pension? 2. Store credit card as coupon? 3. Stomaching stock market fluctuation 4. Emergency supply question 5. Food while unemployed 6. 4% for retirement? 7. Spousal Social Security question 8. […]