Cost Saving

By |May 20th, 2016|

In personal finance we sometimes have an obsessive focus on cost savings.  I think the focus comes from the fact that it’s often a blind-spot for folks when they get into budget trouble.  People would always like to make more money.  More money is a panacea for problems.  People tend to equate cutting costs with cutting happiness.  When given

Ideas about IRA’s that are dissallowed

By |May 13th, 2016|

I’m hoping that this list might save some people some time.  After spending a certain amount of time with tax-advantage vehicles there is an inclination to try to get “creative.”  Unfortunately, creativity in this space is mostly disallowed, and more often than not it’s a bad idea.

Collectibles in an IRA

The idea:  Let’s say that I’m a big fan of

5 Ways to Make Your Relationship More Thrilling

By |May 10th, 2016|

Relationships will at some point get a bit boring. It happens to everyone and it’s your job as someone’s significant other to bring some joy and excitement back into the fold. It’s too easy to get bogged down in day to day tasks and forget that you are alive and you should be enjoying yourselves together. Here are 5

The Panama Papers (Explained)

By |May 6th, 2016|

The Panama papers leaks happened about a month ago.  No doubt there is still more to come as the leak was 2.6 terabytes of data.  Most of the news stories I’ve seen cover this mostly name drop politicians alongside more nefarious individuals alongside the implication that somehow these folks are cheating the system.  At the center of the controversy is

Tax Gain Harvesting

By |April 29th, 2016|

Perhaps you’ve heard of tax-loss harvesting.  It’s a tax minimization strategy in which you sell stock that you’ve lost money in, in order to capture the tax deduction you get by recognizing the capital loss.  It is a common tactic that can add a little bit to your overall returns.  Let’s say that you own two stocks, ABC and

Mortgage Points

By |April 22nd, 2016|

So you’re thinking about purchasing a home.  Big decision.  Some people at this point say things like “good for you”, or “now you won’t be throwing money away on rent”.  Codswallop.  Sometimes you’re financially better off renting.  It’s just a fact.  People in general would rather own than rent, but that doesn’t alone make it better.  You’re also a

Investing in Your Health

By |April 19th, 2016|

“Health is Wealth” is probably the most cliché sayings ever, but there is a reason why everybody is saying it, because it is really true. Perspectives may vary though for some find healthcare an expense, while some argue that it is an investment. Personally, I find health as the latter. Putting prime importance on your physical, mental and social

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How to Create an Effective Financial Plan

By |April 18th, 2016|

An effective financial plan is one that incorporates all aspects of financial life and that includes goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-bound (SMART).

The 4 basic elements of an effective financial plan are situation analysis, goal setting, implementation and assessment. Each of these elements are important and interrelated and should be given proper attention.

The key to achieving

Doing Your Own Taxes

By |April 8th, 2016|

I got about halfway through using H&R Block to do my taxes when I got stuck trying to enter the correct deduction in at one point.  I was trying to use the free edition of H&R Block because I couldn’t see my way to paying for it and after about 20 minutes of frustratingly unclear googling I gave up and

Best IRA Broker

By |March 30th, 2016|

I keep my IRA at Tradeking and I tell all of my friends to use Vanguard.  The customer service has been great and all of the problems I have with them are small and don’t apply to average people.  The first question you should probably consider when choosing a broker for your IRA is whether you intend on being an active

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