Climbing the Consumption Ladder Together

I just read a really interesting post by David at My Two Dollars. His post, “Which Jones family are you trying to keep up with?” struck a chord with me. I’ve been thinking and reading about consumption and psychology for a while now and I’m going to run with a bit of what David touched […]

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Carnival of Personal Finance #116 – NSA Edition

Welcome to the 116th edition of the Carnival of Personal Finance. The Carnival is a weekly collection of the best Personal Finance writing on the web. Advanced Personal Finance is proud to host this week’s Carnival. While you’re here, please have a look around, and if you like what you see, come back again or […]

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A Radical Tax Idea I Love

I’m reading a book called More Sex Is Safer Sex: The Unconventional Wisdom of Economics [aff] that presents a really radical tax idea that I think would be great. The idea is that the government should stop taking taxes (payroll and income) out of your paycheck. Then at the end of the year, the IRS […]

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10 Ways to Save Money In Your Budget

Finding room in your budget for saving and investing isn’t always easy. Here are some painless ways to find that extra couple hundred dollars per month. Ask service providers like satellite TV companies and credit card companies to lower your rates. A simple call to DirecTV got me $10 off per month for a year. […]

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When Automatic 401(k) Enrollment Is Bad

One of the best 401(k) developments in recent years is the rule allowing companies to automatically enroll new employees in a 401(k). Unless the employee takes positive action and opts out, they’re automatically saving for retirement. But there’s a down side to automatic enrollment. Low contributions, no increases in contributions, and poor automatic investment choices […]

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6 Dumb 401(k) moves

1. Cashing out when changing jobs Probably the worst thing you can do with a 401(k) is to take a distribution from it when you change jobs. There are negative tax consequences, you undo lots of good (and easy) work saving for retirement, and you probably don’t need the money anyway. The major negative with […]

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A quick way to tell if you’re saving enough for retirement

I came across a study done published in the Journal of Financial Planning that provides a quick way to tell if you’re saving enough for retirement. The article, National Savings Rate Guidelines for Individuals, uses a more nuanced approach than many retirement calculators. The authors calculate retirement income needs based on net pre-retirement income. Most […]

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Baby’s First Credit Card

Ugh. It was bound to happen. My 4-year old daughter got her first credit card application in the mail yesterday. After we put the recycling out on the curb last night, I reached into the mailbox and grabbed what was in there. Coming inside with her, I said, “Hey! This letter’s for you.” (I saw […]

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Kids With Credit Cards

Here’s a by-product of the often recited ‘buy everything with a rewards credit card’ advice  – the effect on our children. My three year old daughter has never known a time without POS terminals at every retailer. We rarely pay for anything with cash. I’m sure if we didn’t teach her otherwise, she’d think you […]

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Our Daughter’s First Savings Account

After discussing it for a while with my wife, we’ve decided to open a savings account in our daughter’s name. She’s almost four, and we’ve decided now is the right time to start formally teaching her about money. Up until now, most of her financial education has been informal or came from credit card companies. […]

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