The Simple Dollar

Simple, applicable personal finance advice for the modern world.

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Latest Posts from The Simple Dollar (page 9)

401k Contribution Limits for 2016

If you work for a traditional employer, there’s a good chance you’re saving for retirement in a 401k (or some variant, such as a 403b for employees of nonprofit organizations). […]

Five Jobs Where You Can Dress Like a Slob

A long time ago when the earth was green and internet startups were the newest thing, I had a boss who preferred a casual dress code. Perhaps “preferred” is putting it too mildly: I once heard him threaten to cut a reporter’s tie in half if he didn’t remove it immediately. He was holding scissors at the time, so we all took him very seriously. […]

31 Days to Financial Independence (Day 10): Trimming Your Spending – Utilities

“31 Days to Financial Independence” is an ongoing series that appears every Thursday on The Simple Dollar. You might want to start this series from the beginning! Last time, we started looking at the average American family budget, going through each category and examining how one could trim the cost of typical expenses in that category. […]

What’s the Difference Between a Conforming Loan and a Nonconforming Home Loan?

Before you buy a home, it’s important to choose a mortgage that gives you the best possible terms, based on your credit history, income, and the size of your down payment. Finding the right loan can save you tens of thousands of dollars over the lifetime of a mortgage. […]

High Protein, Low Budget

Daniel writes in with one of those reader mailbag questions that had an answer that kept growing and growing and growing until it became clear that it deserved an article of its own. Here’s the question: Hi! Struggling a bit with changing around my food budget and thought you might help. I have a “side gig” as a mixed martial artist. […]

How Do Credit Card Balance Transfer Checks Work?

If you have an unsecured credit card of any kind, you’ve probably received those nifty balance transfer checks in the mail. From a distance, these checks appear harmless, and even helpful. Just write a check to yourself and deposit it in your own bank account. […]

Handling Financially Irresponsible People

One of the greatest challenges for people attempting to adopt or maintain a life of financial responsibility is the presence of financially irresponsible people in their lives. You have people who leverage social pressure to convince you to make bad spending choices or adopt bad financial habits. You have people who leverage their relationship with you in order to convince you to give them money. […]

Four Ways Holiday Shopping Can Crush Your Credit

The tradition of holiday overspending is as American as apple pie. Tradition or not, bad holiday spending habits can undoubtedly take a toll on your wallet, but that’s just the beginning. What you may not realize is that going overboard with your spending during the holidays can also damage your credit as well. […]

Questions About Retirement, Family Thanksgiving, Cookbooks, and More!

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to summaries of five or fewer words. Click on the number to jump straight down to the question. 1. Figuring out bills in collection 2. Finding a better budgeting system 3. Finding a better credit card 4. Car loan concerns 5. Roth IRAs and spouses 6. Starting an unusual side hustle 7. Saving too much? 8. […]

Why You’re Guaranteed to Lose Money in the Stock Market

Let’s say you loan me $10 dollars and a few months later I haven’t paid you back. So you ask me for your money, and I tell you that I only have $5 right now. But I also say that sometime in the future I’ll have the full $10 and I’ll probably even have more, so could you please just wait a little bit? You ask how long that will take and I say I don’t know. It could be months or it could be years. […]