Tips for Getting a Mortgage

Obtaining a mortgage can be one of the most stressful and exhausting parts of the homebuying process. Since the subprime housing crisis and the market crash that kicked off in 2007, mortgage applications and reviews have been more detailed and rigorous than ever, requiring seemingly endless paperwork and extensive income verification. There are also many variables to consider when shopping for a m […]

How Journaling Practices Have Helped My Financial Situation

I’ve mentioned often on The Simple Dollar how journaling is a daily practice for me and has been off and on (but mostly on) since middle school in various forms. At times, it’s taken the form of simply cataloguing my day; at other times, I’ve written in response to various prompts; today, it’s completely different (and I’ll write about that in a bit). […]

Hobbies and Hustles

I recently read this great little article by Molly Conway entitled The Trap of Turning Hobbies Into Hustles. In it, she makes the astute point that when you attempt to start earning money from something that’s a hobby, it ceases to be a hobby any more – rather, it starts to seem like work: I have a friend who is living her dream. […]

Who’s In Control of Your Life?

Let me tell you three stories. The first comes from my own life, while the other two are things that I’ve observed recently. * * * For my own tale, let’s roll back several years. At that time, I worked as a research assistant focusing on data mining. […]

Join Our Tweetchat on Thursday 5/23, 12pm Pacific for a Chance to Win Prizes

Join our Tweetchat this Thursday at 12:00 pm Pacific for lively conversation and a chance to win one of two $10 Amazon GCs! Use #WBChat to participate. This week's topic: Financial Tips for New Grads! Learn about career advice, saving on housing, tackling student loan debt, and more! Let us... […]

Why Spending Less Doesn’t Reduce Your Quality of Living

One of the biggest mental obstacles that most people face when it comes to turning around their financial life is the perception that if they cut into their spending, they’re going to reduce their quality of life. Typically, a person’s mind flashes to the non-essential things that they care about most. So, for me, when you talk about cutting spending, I imagine cutting into my hobby spending. […]

Is Loan Protection Insurance Worth the Cost?

When signing on for a loan, whether it’s a mortgage for a new home or a personal loan to consolidate credit card balances, you’re often offered insurance that promises to make the debt payments should anything happen to you. At first blush this sounds like a great idea, right? After all, such insurance is designed to step in and cover monthly loan payments and protect you from default in the event […]

Beyond wealth: What happens AFTER you achieve financial independence?

In their classic Your Money or Your Life, Joe Dominguez and Vicki Robin argue that the relationship between spending and happiness is non-linear. More spending brings more fulfillment — up to a point. But spending too much can actually have a negative impact on your quality of life. […]

Clearlane Auto Refinance Review

Clearlane, an online auto lending platform that’s powered by Ally Bank, offers auto loan refinancing and lease buyout options for borrowers with nearly any type of credit score. They do so by utilizing a nationwide finance network and offering fast and easy online quotes. […]

The Seven Factors: Behaviors That Lead to Wealth

In the book The Millionaire Next Door, the authors Thomas Stanley and William Danko surveyed more than a thousand households that had accumulated more than a million dollars in net worth, looking for traits among them that were decidedly different than the mainstream population. […]

Don’t Make These Seven Car Insurance Mistakes

When it comes to shopping wisely for a car insurance policy, perhaps the number one rule to keep in mind is the age-old adage about not being a penny wise and a pound foolish. Cliched as that expression may be, buying too little coverage is one of the consumer mistakes most frequently cited by insurance professionals. Unfortunately, it’s just one of the many things consumers do wrong when shopping […]

Ask the Readers: What Are Your Best Travel Planning Tips?

Travel should be fun and relaxing, but the planning part isn't always so. If you've ever planned a trip or two, then you know how stressful it can be...but you probably learned a few things about how to plan your next trip! What are your best travel planning tips? What tools do you use to help you... […]

Questions About Child Rearing Costs, Laundry Services, Unused Media, Aldi, 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. $250K to raise a kid? 2. Long term care? 3. $20 bill budgeting 4. Expense of laundry service 5. Backlog of unused media 6. 403(b) risky? 7. Cheap or expensive bag? 8. Thoughts on Aldi 9. […]

Why Having a Positive Money Mindset Can Help You Become Wealthy

The following is a guest post from DollarSprout. When it comes to building wealth, there are many technical steps and strategies you can follow. And if those technical strategies are what you are lacking, there is no shortage of expert information available. One piece that is often forgotten, however, is the impact an optimistic money mindset can have on your financial success. […]

How Habit Boredom Makes You Abandon Your Goals

Earlier this year, fueled by a trip down the rabbit hole that is Pinterest's bullet journaling suggestions, I found a new way to make a habit of cleaning my house: habit tracking. I set up my new habit tracker like a game board, with each of my daily housekeeping chores shaped like a different... […]

Some Further Thoughts on the One-Bag Challenge

Jeremy writes in: My group of friends has been kicking around an idea and I wanted to get your take on it. Let’s say you had to live out of a suitcase or a big duffel bag permanently. That’s all the possessions you could own. What would be in that bag and why? I actually wrote about this a few years ago when I discussed a month-long period where I did this as a 30-day challenge. […]

Is a Gap Year Better Financially Than Going Straight to College?

Nathan writes in: I am entering my senior year in high school next fall. My parents want me to go to college in the fall right after graduation. They have some savings for me but I will have to add some student loans. I want to take a gap year or two and work full time. I would put that money aside for college and figure out what I want to do because I don’t know what I want to study. […]

Outsourcing my life: Why I pay others to do tasks I could do myself

When people talk about saving money, DIY is one of the first things that comes to mind. Learn how to fix things around the house! Change the oil in your Prius! Make your own cleaning supplies! Do all of this (and more) and you could save hundreds of dollars a year. And that’s great. […]

What Really Goes into Creating a Credit Card

Link for teaser title:  https://www.wisebread.com/how-bank-of-america-designed-the-cash-rewards-card A peek inside the development of the Bank of America Cash Rewards Credit Card. […]

The Million Dollar Question

What would you do if you had a million dollars? This question seems to come up regularly as a conversation starter. I’ve found that the answers tend to fall into two groups. In one group, you tend to have answers that involve radical life changes. […]