The Simple Dollar

Simple, applicable personal finance advice for the modern world.

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Latest Posts from The Simple Dollar (page 299)

Nine Frugal Ideas for Nine Friends

I love sending frugality tips to my friends when I see an opportunity for it. I thought it might be fun to share some of those recent ideas I’ve sent out to people. (Names are changed, along with a few bits of personal info from my responses.) To Amy, the chronically disorganized friend: I find it really useful to make a daily to-do list at the start of the day. […]

Share Purchases of Equipment with Neighbors and Friends (298/365)

There are a lot of pieces of equipment that are useful to have around, but that you don’t use very often. Gardening equipment is a great example of this. Most of the gardening tools we have simply aren’t used all that often. […]

Reader Mailbag: World Series

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. Visa renewal worries 2. Cheap exercise in winter 3. Cheap package mailing 4. Bankruptcy and libraries 5. Selling plasma? 6. Thief in home 7. Hand sanitizing and long life 8. Cutting hair at home 9. […]

Organize “Work Parties” Where People Gather to Help with a Task (297/365)

One of the best memories I have of my college years was on the moving days, when people would move in and out of the dormitories. I always liked to be one of the first students to arrive and one of the last ones to leave, because I found it incredibly fun to help people move in and out of the dorms. I found this particularly useful on my very first semester in college. […]

The Simple Dollar Weekly Roundup: Political Sign Edition

I’ve become aware in the last week or two of multiple incidents of people having political signs in their yard tampered with. Someone just goes up in their yard, pulls the sign down, and usually tries to damage it in what looks like a hasty fashion. […]

Offer to Trade Skills with Your Friends (296/365)

I have friends who are either professionally trained or have significant experience in many, many different fields. Carpentry. Electrical wiring. Plumbing. Home building. Computer repair. Home decor. The list goes on and on. There are a lot of things I’m good at, too. I can handle (or at least help with) many home repair tasks. I can cook just about anything. […]

External Motivation Doesn’t Work

Quite often, I’ve written about how my family has been a tremendous motivation for me. […]

When Making a Major Purchase, Tap Your Social Network (295/365)

Whenever Sarah and I think about a purchase of any kind above roughly $100, the first thing we do is turn to our social network. I’ll put out a message on Facebook to my personal friends asking them if they know anything about, say, point-and-shoot digital cameras. The next time I see some friends face-to-face, I’ll ask them about the item as well. What do I usually get in return? […]

Reader Mailbag: Debate Night

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. Washing plastic bags 2. Blowing off steam inexpensively 3. Toothpaste use? 4. Starting over? 5. Why use Twitter? 6. Early Christmas planning 7. Rollover IRA question 8. Advertisements work? 9. Cloudy days and motivation 10. […]