The Simple Dollar

Simple, applicable personal finance advice for the modern world.

Profile of The Simple Dollar

Latest Posts from The Simple Dollar (page 321)

Who Are You?

Imagine you’re meeting a person for the first time – say, at a community barbecue. You have ten words with which to introduce yourself. What do you say about yourself? Do you mention your job? Do you mention your religion? Do you mention your family? Do you mention your social connections? Do you mention the area where you live, perhaps nodding to your nice home? […]

Don’t Shop for Entertainment’s Sake (302/365)

Shopping is an extremely expensive form of entertainment. If you go out shopping simply because you can’t think of something else to do, you’re willingly putting yourself in an environment that’s designed to extract money from your pocket. They use clever displays, sights, sounds, smells, demonstrations, and countless other techniques to get you to buy something. […]

Reader Mailbag: Congratulations, Giants

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. Car dilemma 2. Very young children and money 3. Praying for money? 4. Retirement contribution calculations 5. Loans versus Roth IRA? 6. Library book sales 7. Can’t find internal motivation 8. Roth IRA and wills 9. […]

Host an All-Day “Cook Ahead” Party (301/365)

About three months ago, I included an entry in this series describing the advantages of cooking and freezing complete meals in advance. Typically, we’d make several copies of the exact same meal, cook one for supper that night, and put the rest in the freezer. There are several advantages to doing this. […]

Keeping Hobby and Entertainment Spending in Check

A few years ago, I was a big collector of DVDs. I amassed a collection of almost 1,000 DVDs of all kinds, and I was pretty proud of the collection. We had display cases in our living room showing all of them off. Now, if you do a bit of “back of the envelope” math on those DVDs, you’ll quickly figure out the cost involved. […]

Buy in Bulk with Friends (300/365)

I love shopping at the big warehouse stores. If you’re at least a bit observant with the prices, you can find some very solid discounts there. The only problem is that in order to get those discounts, you have to walk out the door with a pack of 36 rolls of paper towels or several hundred trash bags or a six-pack of air fresheners. […]

Ten Pieces of Inspiration #97

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. Lao Tzu on past, present, and future The only worthwhile way to think of the past and the future is to think of them in terms of how they influence what you’re doing right now. “If you are depressed you are living in the past. […]

Share Money-Saving Tips with Your Friends (299/365)

This morning, I posted an article in which I described nine frugality tips I shared with my friends over the last several months. They were mostly pulled from Facebook threads and emails, and they were mostly all in response to things said by my friends. Fairly regularly, though, I’ll just offer up an interesting, general purpose frugality tactic to my friends. […]

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. […]