6 Basic Steps to Help You Achieve Financial Freedom

Financial freedom can be a difficult term to define, but at a very basic level it simply means controlling your own finances entirely.

In order to gain financial freedom, you have to be free of debt, able to provide for yourself, and able to prepare for your future. However, achieving those goals is often easier said than done — particularly in times of economic hardship such as those that much of

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100 Words On: A Grim Warning to Those Who Think Money Grows On Trees

A democracy can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the treasury, with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy. The average age of the world’s greatest civilizations has been 200 years.

– Alexis de Tocqueville

The bottom line: By 2016, our National

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100 Words On: Why Most Early Risers Usually Wake Up Smiling

Twenty top CEOs were surveyed by Yahoo! Finance and 80% of them said they wake up every morning at 5:30 or earlier. As for the the other 20% — they rise and shine no later than 6:00. According to Forbes, studies show that early risers are more optimistic, conscientious and stable. It turns out that morning people are more proactive too — which leads to greater career success and more

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The 7 Most Popular Ways to Commit Financial Suicide

On our way back home we stopped to admire this view at Battery Spencer, on the north end of the Golden Gate Bridge.

I recently got back from a vacation that included a family wedding on the Central California coast and a sightseeing trip around the San Francisco Bay Area.

Of course, one of the most popular attractions in San Francisco is the beautiful Golden Gate Bridge. It’s absolutely breathtaking to

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What Barfing Out of a Bus Window Teaches Us About Managing Money

Hi, Len Penzo dot Com fans! I’m Jana and I run a personal finance blog, Daily Money Shot, where I talk about money (but not the boring parts). I’m thrilled to be guest posting here, and when you’re done reading what I have to say, come say hi on Twitter or Facebook!

When I was in college, I was in a sorority. One of the perks of this was date parties.

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100 Words On: Saving Your Lame Excuses for Somebody Who Cares

A wise man once said that excuses are tools of incompetence, only useful for building monuments of nothingness and bridges to nowhere. When it comes to personal finance, there are a countless number of excuses that people often use to explain why the pecuniary pit they’re sitting in is somebody else’s fault — and why they’ll never be able to get their financial house back in order. Of course, that’s

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Dear Friend: Here Are 41 Reasons Why I'm NOT Lending You the Money

Earlier this year, the Huffington Post featured a curious article that attempted to explain why our friends often fail to repay money that they borrow from us. In a nutshell, the piece offered five reasons:

You refuse to ask for the money back.
You make it too easy for your friends to ignore you.
You didn’t get the loan in writing.
Your friends assume that their unpaid debt won’t result in a broken friendship.
Your

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18 Spooky Facts You Didn’t Know About the National Debt

Shhh … Don't tell anybody, but Fort Knox currently holds enough gold to only cover 0.06% of the $16 trillion National Debt.

With October here and Halloween right around the corner, there are a lot of folks out there looking for ways to scare the pants off unwitting friends and family members.

One way to do that without having to dress up like a ghost or goblin is by sharing this

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Great Ways to Save on Your Home Loan

Mortgages can eat you alive.

That’s because even after you decide upon all of the home loan particulars you’re looking for, there’s still that process of finding the best deal for you and your family. For example, you may know that you are looking to finance $200,000 for 30 years, but how do you find the best interest rates? Here are a few options:

Research Online

The Internet has become a fantastic place

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Question: What's the Fastest Way to Pay Down My Mortgage Early?

Vanilla or chocolate?

Credit or debit?

House Hunters or Jersey Shore?

Some questions can be answered with relative ease by almost everyone.

When it comes to paying down mortgages early, however, a much more perplexing question for most folks is whether it’s better to make a single large extra principal payment annually or twelve smaller ones each month.

Is one method better than another?

Does one prepayment method save more interest and result in a quicker

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