What's That Smell? The Costly Joys of Maintaining Older Cars

Parents, if you want your kids to become independently wealthy, don’t encourage them to go to college; tell them to open up a car repair shop instead.

I say that because I just paid my mechanic almost three-thousand bucks for services rendered. I know.

Of course, that’s what happens when you own a couple of cars that are meticulously maintained, but getting a bit long in the tooth.

This week, along with the

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10 More Old Wives’ Tales Masquerading As Financial Rules of Thumb

There are people out there who swear that if you’re lucky enough to see the first flower of springtime on a Friday, it’s a sign of impending wealth.

I know. I don’t buy it either.

Still, let’s assume these folks know what they’re talking about; what happens if that first flower is found on Friday the 13th? Is the wealth omen officially null and void?

Can somebody take an action item and get

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Why Bad Drivers Prefer Aftermarket Over Manufacturer Car Parts

Do men or women make better drivers? It’s a question that I suspect has been debated ever since Henry Ford started mass-producing his Model T at the turn of the twentieth century.

One thing is certain, I know the question has always been a hot topic of discussion in my house, although I’ve always smugly maintained a slight edge over my wife in the debate.

Admittedly, the Honeybee would point out that

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Dogs and Old Cars: Why Both Are Worthy Of Being Man’s Best Friend

I was surfing the Internet this week when I stumbled upon a brilliant essay by The Washington Post’s Gene Weingarten on why old dogs make the best dogs. In it, Weingarten astutely observed:

“It’s no big deal to love a dog; they make it so easy for you. They find you brilliant, even if you are a witling. You fascinate them, even if you are as dull as a butter knife.”

That’s

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My Son’s “Free” Car: What We've Got Here Is a Failure to Communicate

My teenage son, Matthew, turned 14-years-old last month, so I probably shouldn’t have been surprised when he recently broached the topic of getting a driver’s license on his 16th birthday while I was driving us to the golf course to play a round with his Grandpa and Uncle Ben.

“Even if I allow you to get your driver’s license when you turn 16, son, you’re still going to need a car.”

“But

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Evaluating the Pros & Cons of 4 Common Car Loan Alternatives

In an ideal world we all want to be debt-free; and borrowing money is something that we all should approach with caution. However, when it comes to living a real life, very few of us will be able to escape borrowing money to finance a larger purchase. A car can be one of those big purchases and, unless you’re happy to ride a bicycle or save up money in your

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It Could Be Worse: 9 Everyday Items More Expensive Than Gasoline

I drove by the corner gas station today, as I do everyday on my way home from work, and I couldn’t help but notice that the price of gasoline rose another few cents over the weekend. This time the sign was unapologetically advertising a price of $4.179 per gallon.

You know, I hate that sign. Some days I feel like it is taunting me — especially the ones when I have

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Why Your Expensive Luxury Car Doesn’t Impress Smart People. (Or Me.)

A few days ago Jennifer commented on a post I had written entitled 8 Big Reasons Why You’re Getting an F in Personal Finance 101. She was lamenting the sense of entitlement she saw in many people.  Here is an excerpt:

“I know a woman who is a single mother and hit up her friends for money to replace the engine in her SUV. I declined to participate because even though

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Should Low-Income Drivers Receive Subsidies to Use Toll Express Lanes?

Every day on my way home from work I zip by tens of thousands of people behind the wheels of cars stuck in hopelessly gridlocked traffic because they didn’t want to pay the toll (usually between $2 and $10, depending on the direction and time of day) for the open express lanes.

For me, the money spent every day for the right to avoid 10 miles of traffic hell is money

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It’s True: Premium Gasoline Is A Lot Like Male Enhancement Drugs

The things I do for this blog in the name of personal finance.

One day last month I got into a lunchtime conversation at work with a contractor who tried to convince me he had good reasons for putting premium gasoline in his Toyota Corolla, the biggest of which was that he got better gas mileage.  I found that a bit hard to believe – but more on that in a

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