Most people who have emergency and rainy day funds use banks to keep their cash safe. However, it’s also wise to keep a home-based readily-accessible disaster fund in the event a situation arises that makes it impossible to withdraw the cash from those accounts — especially if merchants become, for whatever reason, unable or unwilling to conduct credit card transactions too.
The trick is in finding the perfect secret place for
Continue reading Your Disaster Fund and the Best Places to Hide Money in Your Home
This weekend I was pouring a little half-and-half into my cup of coffee (no, not Folgers) when I noticed something extremely disturbing: the creamer was 34 days beyond the expiration date printed on the carton top.
Yes, 34 days. I know.
Of course, the first thought that immediately crossed my mind was: You idiot!
Considering that I was on my third cup of the day, the next thought that popped into my head
Continue reading Is It Okay to Eat Foods Past Their Expiration Dates?
Most procrastinating high school and college literature students know that when they’ve put off their reading assignments to the point where they no longer have the time to actually read the book, they can always rely on Cliffs Notes.
Some kids are hooked on Cliffs Notes like a bad drug while others use them in a purely “recreational” fashion. In fact, I’ll bet well over half of you reading this have
Continue reading Personal Finance For Dummies: It’s as Easy as A-B-C
A few years ago I conducted a little experiment in order to ascertain my young kids’ sophistication level regarding money. Essentially, I subjected my then-9-year-old daughter, Nina, and 11-year-old son, Matthew, to a detailed loan interview with the Bank of Dad.
The interview basically revealed that my kids were, understandably, still rookies in the world of personal finance and money management.
As a parent, it is extremely important to me that they
Continue reading Use a Ledger to Teach Kids Money Management Skills
Last summer my 12-year-old daughter, Nina, was extolling the fashion virtues of her hot pink Converse Chuck Taylor All-Star high-top sneakers, better known to many as simply, “Chucks.”
What I found amusing was while Nina really thought she was on the cutting edge of sartorial style, she was really just riding the latest fashion wave that has seen the popularity of those venerable basketball shoes rise and fall multiple times since
Continue reading What Goes Around Comes Around: Rising Interest Rates Are Inevitable
Although it’s hard for me to believe, my humble home recently turned 14-years-old. So, as you might expect, a lot of the original appliances we bought when we first moved in — or were included with the brand new house — have been acting up for awhile now.
We had already replaced our failing garbage disposal and old refrigerator a little over a year ago as part of a minor kitchen
Continue reading Sometimes It Pays Not to Look for the Best Deal
Keep it simple, Stupid. That’s something we’ve all been told at one time or another, for any variety of reasons. That’s usually sage advice — especially when it comes to managing your personal finances. There’s no need to make things complicated. Generally speaking, remember:
Minimize or eliminate impulse purchases.
Save up for what you can’t afford.
Understand where every penny you earn is going.
Pay yourself first; make your retirement and emergency
Continue reading 100 Words On: Why It Pays to Keep It Simple, Stupid
Who doesn’t love Valentine’s Day?
Apparently, almost nobody.
To prove it, here are a few fond financial facts from the National Retail Federation that you can whisper into your lover’s ear — along with several bits of other Valentine’s Day trivia — while you’re both cuddling by the fireplace on February 14th. Or not.
1. Valentine’s Day is big business. In fact, Americans are expected to spend over $17 billion this year on
Continue reading 18 Fond Financial Facts You Didn’t Know About Valentine’s Day
Every year on Groundhog Day, folks eager to know whether there will be six more weeks of winter wait for Punxsutawney Phil to emerge from his burrow. Since 1887, the storied groundhog has failed to see his shadow — thereby predicting an early spring, as legend has it — only 15 times. How accurate is he? According to the Stormfax Weather Almanac, Phil’s prognostic powers are pretty putrid; in fact,
Continue reading 100 Words On: Why You Should Always Bet Against the Groundhog
When I was in high school, I had a classmate named Steve Kowolski who used to bug the bejesus out of me and my buddies.
Okay, to be honest, Steve’s last name wasn’t Kowolski, although he did have a last name that ended in “ski.”
Anyway, the guy was a real pest, always flapping his gums and looking for ways to get a rise out of whoever he could — but Steve’s
Continue reading Ticked Off! Stopping Chronic Dog Barking – and the Price of Silence