The 7 Best Ways to Earn Travel Points and Miles Without a Credit Card

Points and miles make it possible to see the world at a much lower cost, but that doesn't mean everyone is in the best position to earn them. For starters, travel rewards credit cards offer the easiest way to earn rewards on your regular spending, but some of us don't have the 740+ credit scores... […]

6 Tips to Grow Your Savings on an Irregular Income

For the past seven years, the vast majority of my income has come from freelance work. While I enjoy the entrepreneurial aspect of my career and the notion that through hard work I can significantly increase my income in a way a standard salaried job would not necessarily allow me to do, there are still drawbacks to this lifestyle. […]

Mortgage Rates Have Dropped Sharply — Should You Refinance?

Mortgage rates have dropped sharply over the past few months, giving millions of homeowners an opportunity to refinance into a more affordable loan. The average rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage fell to 4.04% on June 12, according to Bankrate’s weekly survey of large lenders. […]

The Frugal Snowball

One of my favorite articles from the early days of The Simple Dollar was The Snowball Effect. […]

Ask the Readers: Do You Have a Garden?

Gardening is popular hobby, and for good reason! It can be a lot of time and work, sure, but it's incredibly fulfilling to watch your plants grow from your efforts. Even better if you can eat it! Do you have a garden? What sorts of plants do you grow? How do you maintain a healthy garden on a... […]

Questions About Auto Insurance, Electric Kettles, Electric Cars, Allergy Medicine, 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. Prioritizing college or retirement? 2. Types of auto insurance 3. Possibly illegal behaviors of boss 4. Kettle efficiency for tea 5. Buy low, sell high? 6. Generic allergy medications on Amazon 7. […]

Shop Your Way to Better Credit? Amazon Introduces a Credit Builder Card

Amazon, the online retailer that wants to be all things to all people, has just rolled out what may be the retail industry’s first secured credit card. Aimed at consumers with subprime credit scores or those who have no credit history at all, the card is a smart move for Amazon on many levels. The Amazon Credit Builder Card is a closed-loop card, meaning it can be used only for purchases on Amazon […]

Millennials Should Look at Retirement in a New Way

The following is a guest post from Riley at Young and the Invested. Everywhere you look, Millennials seem to be killing something.  Whether it’s traditional products, definitions of convenience, working demands, or some other societal convention -- we constantly receive a bad rap.  Despite this, we manage to get by. […]

An Appreciation of My Father

I’m pretty sure that my father will read this sometime today or tomorrow, or else my mother will read it aloud to him. In either case, I’ll start off with the most important thing: thank you, dad, for everything I’ve written about below and so much more. My father is in his mid seventies now, and simply typing that is almost unbelievable to me. […]

Summer Vacation!

Well, apparently I need a vacation after my European vacation! I've come home to a Real Life in which I have too much to do and not enough time to do it. […]

Buyer’s Remorse and Forgotten Things

Open up your closet door, dig past the first things you see, and look at ten things you happen to find in the back (or everything, if you want). Out of those ten things, how many of them fill you with buyer’s remorse? How many of them had you completely forgotten? Look at the last ten purchases on your Amazon account (or all of them, if you want). […]

Why Cruises Are the Best Option for a Cheap Family Vacation

Planning a family vacation is often part fun and part stress. After all, you ultimately need to settle on a vacation idea most of your family will enjoy — without going over your predetermined budget, of course. While camping or renting a condo at the beach can be both frugal and fun, many... […]

The Hartford Renters Insurance Review

If you don’t own your home (or no longer do), but you still have plenty of prized possessions, purchasing a renters insurance policy makes sense. This coverage is very affordable nationwide, with average costs of $188 per year according to the Insurance Information Institute (III). […]

State Farm Renters Insurance Review

State Farm is well known within the insurance world, mostly due to their popular auto insurance, homeowner’s insurance, and life insurance policies. […]

Nationwide Renters Insurance Review

While your landlord purchases a homeowners insurance policy that covers the building you live in, it’s important to note that their insurance coverage doesn’t insure your personal belongings. Ultimately, that’s why many tenants purchase renter’s insurance. With this type of policy, you can insure your personal belongings against damage or theft. […]

What to Do When Your Financial Improvements Are Making You Unhappy With Your Life

For me, one of the most powerful side effects of turning my financial life around was that it made me feel genuinely, though modestly, happier in my day to day life. As we were paying off debts and starting to really save for our future, it felt as if this background layer of stress was slowly removed from my life. […]

How to Keep Home Improvement Projects From Busting Your Budget

There's a leak in my dining room that my husband and I are afraid to fix. We're not worried about destroying the old plaster (the water is doing a fine job of that on its own). Nor are we concerned that we can't handle the necessary work, since we plan to contract it out. No, we're wary of this... […]

Join Our Tweetchat on Thursday 6/13, 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: Having a Frugal Father's Day! Learn about DIY/affordable gifts for dad, fun and frugal activities to do with dad on... […]

The Grind

“Most people overestimate what they can do in one year and underestimate what they can do in ten years.” —Bill Gates One of the biggest changes in my perspective on personal finance since I started The Simple Dollar is how to succeed at your goals. When I first started to turn things around, I set what I thought was an enormous, audacious goal. […]

Are Free Credit Scores ‘Fake’ Credit Scores?

In the credit scoring world, two credit scoring platforms dominate the market. FICO is the most commonly used brand of credit score. However, it’s certainly not the only game in town. Between mid-2017 and 2018, over 10.5 billion VantageScore credit scores were used by 2,800 unique users. You Have Hundreds of Credit Scores While FICO and VantageScore are the most visible credit scores in the U.S. […]