budget

Too broke to be frugal?

The first few years after I got out of college my finances were seriously out of control. I was making pretty good money, but I was spending all of it. Worse, I wasn't keeping tr

6 Ways that Dieting and Budgeting are Exactly the Same

The New Year usually brings about two very common goals for most people: Getting in shape and getting their finances under control. Dieting is the number one method of achieving t

Plan for your wants

Budgets tend to focus on needs--food, shelter, heat, light, transportation, and (of course) taxes. They also provide for wants, but generally the smaller, shorter-term wants--cabl

Emergency belt-tightening

Typical personal finance advice would have you divide your budget categories into two groups: Your fixed expenses and your discretionary expenses. I generally don't like that dis

Use only what you need

That’s the advice from a beautifully-executed campaign from Denver Water, right here in my own backyard of Colorado. The campaign (created by Sukle Advertising, a very smart, strat

Supermarket Shopping for Savers: 6 Ways to Avoid Their Tricky Traps

Going to the supermarket and sticking to a list is an exercise in discipline and requires fortitude and resilience of epic proportions. Employing tips like “don’t shop when you’re

In times like these, separate the want from the need.

I remember saying to my dad, a long, long time ago, that I really needed a whole bunch of He-Man action figures for Christmas. Oh, and Battlecat, too. My dad looked at me, a hopefu

Help! My Money Scares Me!: Tips for Educating Yourself Without Feeling Overwhelmed

Do you feel lost at the very idea of having a budget, let alone a comprehensive financial plan? Does it make your head hurt to think about how much you make and how much you spend?

Regifting: A Simple How-To Guide

As the saying goes, one man's trash is another man's treasure. It's OK to regift as long as you follow a few simple guidelines.

10 Things I've Learned From Grocery Shopping on a Budget

Making and sticking to a grocery budget hasn't just helped our finances -- it's taught us a thing or two about money, food and life.

Chill Out With These 6 Simple DIY Freezer Treats

Cool off this summer by making these easy, affordable, and — most importantly — tasty frozen treats!

Refactor Your Budget Categories

Use the budget categories put out by the Bureau of Labor Statistics to help you better understand your spending.

Budgeting in a time of inflation

My very first experience running a household was in 1980, just as the last big inflation was spiking up over 10%.  My carefully constructed budget was completely destroyed by price

Budget Busters

Every day I read about 60-70 personal finance/frugal living blogs. Through the help of many of our online friends, I have been fortunate enough to put my personal finance position

Realistic Budgeting: The Marriage Saver

The road to divorce is not necessarily paved with infidelity, quite possibly it's paved with secretive purchases and a lack of budget that causes both parties resentment and st

How to wrap gifts with leftovers.

I’ve mentioned before that I’m no fan of the greeting card and gift wrapping industries. Not only are their products way over-priced, they’re also less than original in most cases.

This Year’s Hot Toy is Next Year’s Trash

Our commitment to saving money has always prevented my family from buying the current year’s “Hot” toys. Every year that I hold tight to the de

How the rich stay rich; a lesson in lateral thinking

A friend recently told me the story of how a millionaire thinks. Not every millionaire of course, just one in particular. It's ingenius, as you will discover. But it really mad

Debt repayment is not an expense

Over and over again, in budgeting articles and even books on personal finance, I see sample budgets that include debt repayment as if it were an expense. This shows a fundamental

101 things to do with a $1 bill.

What can a dollar buy you these days? Certainly not a gallon of gas, which it could have done 6 years ago. Anyway, this idea actually came out of a lunchtime chat with some friends. [more]