The Simple Dollar

Simple, applicable personal finance advice for the modern world.

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Latest Posts from The Simple Dollar (page 384)

Revisiting the Question of Whether Money Buys Happiness

One point I’ve talked about frequently on The Simple Dollar was whether money can buy happiness. In the past, I’ve subscribed strongly to the evidence proposed by author Daniel Gilbert in his book Stumbling on Happiness where he claims that an income level above $40,000 does not actually increase a person’s happiness to any noticeable degree. […]

The Challenge of Following Advice

Whenever I read a personal finance book, I’m struck by how hard some of the steps seem and how easy other steps seem. There are some things that just seem like normal behavior to me, while others seem almost insurmountable. Whenever I see a new exercise routine, I find that some of the exercises are really easy to do and others are very hard to do. […]

Some Thoughts on Store-Sponsored Free Activities for Children

As you’re reading this, my children are (probably) at Lowe’s (a hardware store) engaged in the store’s regular Saturday “Build and Grow” project. […]

Ten Pieces of Inspiration #147

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. John Steinbeck on cheap “Anything that just costs money is cheap.” – John Steinbeck Great things are made of far more than money. 2. […]

The Dangers of Snap Decisions

A few days ago, I learned that a very plainspoken and plainly-clothed elderly man that I knew as a nice guy and a person of good humor was actually a multi-millionaire, along with his wife. It turns out that he and his wife had, at the age of about twenty six, chosen to start living off of half of their annual income and put the rest in the bank. […]

What Are You Buying? Another Way of Looking at “Cheap”

You need some cheddar cheese for a recipe you’re going to make, so you head to the store. The cheapest block of cheddar cheese costs… let’s say, $1.99. It’s got the logo of a giant multinational corporation on it. You don’t know where it was made. You don’t know what kind of milk is in it. […]

Great Performance Without Hard Work?

My six year old daughter is experiencing a bit of the frustration that comes with learning a musical instrument. When she first began piano lessons, she had big dreams of being able to play some of her favorite songs quite quickly. She’s almost constantly singing songs and humming them around our house and she’s watched and listened to quite a few accomplished pianists in her life. […]

Reader Mailbag: Writing Ebooks

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. Funding child’s health insurance 2. International travel currency concerns 3. Smartphones at a discount? 4. Credit card diversity? 5. Figuring out multiple bank accounts 6. Returning to school in retirement 7. […]

Spouse Mishandling Money? Here’s How to Protect Yourself

I can’t tell you how happy I am to have Sarah as a spouse. Whenever we sit down and go through bills together, one or the other of us can explain exactly what each item is on every single bill. […]

The Simple Dollar Weekly Roundup: Work as Game Edition

I recently realized that, in a lot of ways, I treat my work – professional, household, and so on – as a game in a lot of ways. I keep score. I try to top that score. I know that the best way to do that is to look for better techniques and improve my focus. I feel really good when I break that record. Games can teach a lot of good lessons about real life. Are You Drowning in Debt? […]