Len Penzo dot Com Is Five Years Old Today!

I wrote my first blog post five years ago today.

Now I’ve got to be honest with you, folks: I only started Len Penzo dot Com as a way to try and keep myself from getting bored. It’s true!

Hopefully, I haven’t bored too many of you since then.

By the way, as fate would have it, this post also happens to be article number 1000! I think that’s pretty interesting, don’t you?

No, I didn’t write all of those articles by myself. I had some help from more than a few people, including my dear Aunt Doris who has contributed over a dozen pieces to this blog over the past couple of years. Not bad for a 93-year-old!

I’ve also had more than a little help from my readers over the years. Some of your guest posts have been truly inspirational. For example, there was Gayle Tate’s uplifting story of how he escaped from the depths of poverty, not to mention all of the fantastic reader testimonials detailing how they live on less than $40,000 per year.

Then again, I’ve published some truly heart-breaking stories from you too. Like the one from Spedie, a long-time Len Penzo dot Com reader whose husband skipped town — but not before cleaning out her bank accounts of more than $50,000, and leaving her flat broke in the process.

Last week my blog also reached another milestone: 5-million page views. Hooray! At least that’s what the guys from Google tell me.

If you would have told me five years ago that one day this site would tally 5 million page views, I would have said you were crazy.

I’ve chronicled before how difficult it was for me to attract readers when I was just starting out. In fact, Len Penzo dot Com attracted just 72 visitors in its first month. I know. And although I can’t prove it, I suspect that all 72 of them attended my wedding.

Of course, maybe that’s a good thing; admittedly, those early articles weren’t the greatest. Nine months later, my writing had improved markedly, but the site still had just 13,000 page views. I didn’t care though, because I was having a lot of fun. Frankly, at the time, it didn’t matter if I had two readers (thanks Mom and Dad) or two million.

Anyway, thank you all so very much for stopping by and checking out what I’ve had to say here over the years. I really appreciate it!

Before I go, I have one request: If you’ve visited here in the past but haven’t felt the urge to leave a comment, then I would love for you to take a quick moment and say hi now! You know … just to make sure that the guys at Google aren’t playing some kind of cruel joke on me.

Photo Credit: Andrew Eick

50 comments to Len Penzo dot Com Is Five Years Old Today!

  • Josh Kosmicki

    Hi Len!
    Thanks so much for sharing your passion for common sensical approaches to managing personal finances. Although I don’t necessarily agree with everything I read here, I do appreciate the perspective and humor.
    Here’s to five more years and 1000 more articles!

  • Congrats and happy anniversary to you! I just observed that there are many anniversaries for this month.

  • Sassy Mamaw

    Congratulations, Len! I particularly enjoy the humor, and stories of your money mistakes from the past. That sort of honesty give the rest of us hope for the future. Thanks for five years!

  • David C.

    Happy Anniversary!!!! I just discovered you earlier this year and bookmarked your blog immediately. Thank you very much for the enlightenment and the entertainment.

  • Frank S

    Congrats on 5 years, Len. I only became a regular reader about a year ago, but I’ve enjoyed every minute I’ve spent here. Keep up the great work.

  • Suzanne

    Hi Len! The Google guys aren’t misleading you. We’re out here reading you. :-)

    Now that you got me to leave a comment, I want to let you know that I look forward to reading your Black Coffee posts every Sunday morning.

  • Sarah

    Happy anniversary! I’ve been following your blog for 3 years now and this is my first comment. Your one of my favorite personal finance blogs!

  • Renee s

    Hey Len! Happy anniversary! I always look forward to your posts :) Keep up the great work!

  • Hi Len,

    Congratulations on an amazing accomplishment! Wow, 1,000 posts in five years is around 16 posts/month. I don’t care how much “help” you had getting to that number, it’s still means a mind-blowing amount of writing on your part.

    What’s even crazier is that it’s GREAT writing all while you’ve held down a day job! I’m so impressed…you deserved that Plutus Award! I’m so happy to have found your site; I enjoy every post I read.


  • Giblet

    Earlier this year somebody sent me your post that listed 41 reasons why you won’t lend money. From that point on I was hooked. I’m responsible for at least 250 of your 5,000,000 page views.

  • Jill

    Okay. I’ve been reading your blog off and on for a few years now and this is my first comment too. Congratulations, Len!

  • Miranda

    Congrats on 5 years Len! I’m a big fan of your blog!!!!

  • Happy blog-birthday Len! Best wishes for many more!

  • Michael in SoCal

    Congrats Len. Your blog is a great read.

  • Joe

    Congrats on this milestone, awesome job. I enjoy reading your posts and appreciate the support you have shown me as well.

    Happy Holidays to you and the family!

  • Congratulations Len. Five years goes by way too fast these days. A thousand posts is also quite a milestone.

  • PK

    Happy Birthday, blogman. Some of your pixels are starting to go grey!

  • Shel

    Many congrats on the anniversary and thank you! I enjoy your column and use it as practical advice. You often talk of investing in silver and gold. Do you mean in the stocks of silver and gold or real tangible silver and gold. If you mean tangible, where do you recommend buying it?

  • Congrats Len! I really enjoy your blog and meeting you at FinCon. Here’s to another 5 years! Now… How does this comment box work? Do I press this button… nope… how about this one…

  • Sabz

    Hi Len,
    I have been reading your blog for a while now. As much as I like reading about the financial advice, it’s also your sense of humor and writing style that makes your blog so much fun! Here’s to many more posts … Keep writing!

  • joe pfautz

    Gongrats Len, I like your finance writing but you and I are far apart on politics I would like the writing better with less political crap and stay with the money hope for 5 more years.

  • Shirley

    Hi Len! I am 57 years old and LOVE your advice, to-the-point articles and only slightly sarcastic humor…………

  • Hi Len,

    I read every post of yours without fail and enjoy each and every one. Keep up the good work!

  • Terri

    Len: Happy blog b-day! First time commenter. What I like about your blog is the no-nonsense advice. I also like that you’re not afraid to go against the grain sometimes. That’s a good thing! You really make me think! :-)

  • ib50

    and many moooooooore!!!

  • Rezdent

    Yours is one of my favorite blogs by far and I do hope you continue another 5 years.

    Thank you.

  • Susie

    Thanks for the great articles Len – please keep them coming! Congrats on five years too!!! -Susie

  • Frugal Pediatrician

    Congrats Len. You are now in kindergarten. My 5 year old loved the picture. My family loves your blog!

  • Mom

    Well done, son.

    Love you,

  • Len Penzo

    @Josh: I’m just glad we agree on some things — that’s more than I can say for the Honeybee. She disagrees with me on everything.
    @Teffany: The majority of both humans and blogs get started in December — it’s just that humans have to wait nine months before they’re born, but blogs don’t. ;-)
    @Sassy: I’m glad somebody got a little enjoyment from my money mistakes. ;-)
    @David C, @Frank S, @Suzanne, @Sarah, @Renee S: Thank you.
    @Ree: You are way too kind, Ree. Thank you for all of the thoughtful comments you’ve left here in the recent past.
    @Giblet: It’s not that I won’t lend money. I do. I was explaining reasons why I won’t lend YOU money. ;-)
    @Jill, @Miranda, @Kurt, @Michael in SoCal: Thanks all!
    @Joe: Thank you. Buon Natale!
    @Bret: You’ve been at this longer than me! We need to do lunch over the Christmas break.
    @PK: Hey … I didn’t even know my pixels were showing!

    @Shel: Physical. Always buy physical. There are 60 claimants for every ounce of paper gold stock issued. I think the ratio is similar for silver. If you don’t have it in your physical possession, you don’t own it — and I guarantee that you won’t get it if the financial system collapses. That would be tragic considering the reason you buy precious metals is not as an investment, but as insurance against a drastic revaluation or collapse of the dollar. As for where to buy … drop me an email and I’ll give you a few recommendations. Len@LenPenzo.com

    @Lance: It was great meeting you too! And let me know when you’re ready to share another post with my readers — the last one was a big hit!
    @Sabz: Thank you. My kids think I’m funny too, but they’re laughing at me.
    @joe: Thank you for putting up with me. I know we don’t see eye-to-eye on some of the things I post here on the weekends. I appreciate you sticking around for the stuff I post on the weekdays!
    @Shirley: Thank you! And age is just a number, Girlfriend.
    @Belinda: Thank you.
    @Terri: Well, it would be boring if every personal finance blogger was in lock step agreement!
    @ib50: ha ha! I sure hope so.
    @Rezdent: Me too. Thank you.
    @Susie: I’ll do my best. Thank you.
    @Frugal pediatrician: Thank you. Let me see … in development terms, by age five I should be able to finally communicate in complete sentences now, yes? ;-)
    @Mom: Thank you, Mom. I love you.

  • Jen from Virginia

    Congrats, Len!!!! Keep up the great work!

  • Congrats, Len! And you didn’t even mention the Plutus Award you won at FinCon13 for “Best Personal Finance Blog, Single Author”!

  • I know I speak for all of Canada (as usual) when I say congratulations on making it this far, and keep up the good work. Love the $40K series..and Aunt Doris, naturally.

  • Congratulations Len, five years and five million pageviews is quite the accomplishment. Here is to many more years!

  • Len Penzo

    @Jen: Thank you! And thank you for being the very first contributor to the “Living on Less Than $40,000″ series too! :-)

    @Jenny: Buenos Nachos.

    @Valerie: Thank you. And thank you for mentioning the Plutus Award too. You’re too kind. You know … I paid a lot of money for that. ;-)

    @Sandi: I love all my friends in Canada, Sandi. And thank you for all of your tweets too! :-)

    @Pauline: I just hope I can last five more years. By the way, thank you for all your tweets too. :-)

  • Jen from Virginia

    No, thank YOU! I felt honored that you chose me. And another thanks for giving me advice recently! I always look forward to reading your blog daily and yours is the very first I go to each day.

  • Chicago Gal

    Congrats! I’ve been a reader for a couple of years now. Your blog reminds me of something my dad would write – practical and thrifty but with the occasional splurge mixed in (in my dad’s case, it was retirement at 50 and a vacation house). Wise lessons for someone like me who’s navigating the world of personal finance in her late 20′s. Keep it up.

  • Aunt Jenny

    Thanks for all the great articles and laughs throughout the years Len! 5 years later and your articles are still fresh and an interesting read. I can, without a doubt, say that your site is my favorite (and not just because I won a gift card from you this last year ;)

    Here’s to another 5 years, thanks again for the great reads,

  • Len Penzo

    @Chicago Gal: Thanks for reading! (And your dad sounds like a really smart man.)

    @Aunt Jenny: I appreciate all your support. Thank you.

  • Karen Kinnane

    Congratulations on five years of success Len! You’ve stuck to your mission and become successful at it! This is a financial blog, so perhaps you or a reader can help me in my search. I’ve heard there’s a book written by a man who felt that America was still the land of opportunity. He moved to a new location knowing no one, with no money, and built himself up financially there. I don’t know name of book or author and am eager to read it. He evidently moved into a homeless center, got a job, collected cans for extra money (fuzzy on this part), got a raise, bought his own vehicle, began a business, and wrote book about how he succeeded with nothing but hard work, thrift and applying himself. Thank you to anyone who can give me the title so I can read the whole thing.

    • Len Penzo

      Thank you, Karen. Unfortunately, I am not familiar with the book you are referring to, but it sounds like a good one.

      Maybe one of my readers is.

  • Sommer

    I love your blog! Keep up the good work!

  • Hank Kras

    Fantastic and Congrats, we are out here and enjoy your thoughts and perspective. Many more years….

  • Steve

    I just started reading your stuff when I was referred by Consumer Commentary. Your style and observations are always a joy.

  • You know what is funny and strange at the same time? My blog is exactly 6 years old today. I had no idea until I read your title and decided to look.

    Of course, mine still has a very small following (mostly people who attended my wedding or are local friends). But then again, I started it as a way to keep track of my favorite frugal recipes, and I never really wanted to move it beyond that.

    Keep it up. Love the blog!

  • Sandy

    Congratulations! I love your writing style and your common sense. That’s what brings me back.

  • WB

    Congrats and continued success. Enjoy the blog.

  • Len Penzo

    @Sommer, @Hank, @Steve, @Sandy, @WB: Thank you!
    @Marcia: Happy 6th blog-day, Marcia! I’ll feature your blog in this week’s Black Coffee. Let’s see if we can’t get you a few more readers! :-)
    @Stefan: Hello from Los Angeles!

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