The Simple Dollar

Simple, applicable personal finance advice for the modern world.

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Latest Posts from The Simple Dollar (page 8)

Our Family’s Strategies for Saving a Mint on the Back-to-School Season

It’s an annual tradition of sorts for parents all across the country. The summer starts to wind down. They get a letter from the school telling them about their student’s enrollment for the next year and who their teacher is. They start seeing hints of “back to school” at the store and in their mailbox. […]

Should You Ever Refinance a Car Loan?

More than half of used cars and a full 86.3% of new cars were purchased with a loan in the first quarter of 2016, according to Experian. The average new car buyer borrowed $30,032 for 68 months for their new ride, while the average used car buyer borrowed $20,723 for 66 months. Compare those figures to last year’s, and you’ll notice an expensive trend. […]

Personal Finance and Grit

A few weeks ago, I made an offhand mention in a reader mailbag about the wonderful book Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance by Angela Duckworth. Duckworth defines grit in very simple terms – it’s simply perseverance and passion for long-term goals. […]

I Sat Through a High-Pressure Timeshare Sales Pitch (and It Wasn’t the Nightmare I Expected)

Enduring a high-pressure timeshare presentation was never on my must-do list. Then again, it’s not that difficult to lure me in with the promise of a cheap vacation when all you’re asking for is two hours of my time. It all started when I received an offer from Holiday Inn Vacation Club: five nights at the Holiday Inn Orange Lake Resort in Orlando, Fla., for a grand total of $299. […]

Avoiding the Temptation to Spend Money on ‘Free-to-Play’ Online Games

Max wrote in with a great question that started off in the reader mailbag, but eventually grew into a rather long post. Here’s what he had to say: Most good mobile games are free to play but they offer optional purchases that make the game a little easier or give you a boost or a cosmetic improvement. […]

How to Bridge a Resume Gap

The old adage is true: it’s easier to find a job when you have a job. Sometimes, however, you have no choice – you’re laid off or fired or your job otherwise disappears, and you find yourself looking for work without the security of full-time employment. When that happens, the goal is make sure you go into the job interview process from a position of strength. […]

10 Questions to Ask Yourself About Any Purchase

For me, and for a lot of other people, shopping can be a very impulsive exercise. When something you want is on your radar, you’re often pulled very strongly toward making that purchase. […]

How One Man Lives in His Truck to Turbocharge His Savings

Late last year, a blog called Thoughts From Inside the Box started to attract a lot of attention. The media had picked up on the fact that a young employee at Google was living out of a 16-foot box truck. Fanning the flames of interest was the fact that he parked his truck in Google’s parking lot and basically lived at his job rent-free.  Also, this is not just any old truck. […]

Big Changes versus Little Changes: Which Has More Impact on Your Finances and Your Life?

Most people who share personal finance advice tend to agree on a lot of the core principles. Spend less than you earn. Save for the future. Shop around. Learn before you invest. […]

This One Factor Affects Your Credit Score More Than Anything Else

It should come as no surprise that the way you pay your bills — particularly, the consistency with which you pay them — has a huge impact on your credit scores. […]