Money Lessons from the Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has been a sobering experience, to say the least:  Lockdowns, supply shortages, skyrocketing unemployment, a stock market plummet, and, worst of all, over 58,000 deaths in the U.S. caused by a virus that is not fully understood.  I’ve been fortunate to remain employed and maintain the same income, but if the lockdown… Continue reading Money Lessons from the Pandemic

Personal Finance Foundation – Part 1 – A Starting Place (Calculating Net Worth)

So you’re on the journey to get your financial house in order.  You first need to know where you’re starting.  You do this by measuring your net worth.  Net worth is calculated by adding up your assets and then subtracting your liabilities.  A very, very simple example: You have a savings account balance of $10,000… Continue reading Personal Finance Foundation – Part 1 – A Starting Place (Calculating Net Worth)

What Can You Learn from the Subprime Mortgage Crisis?

It’s hard to believe time has passed so quickly.  Ten years ago the subprime mortgage crisis led the U.S. economy into a severe recession and carnage ensued.   Many people lost their homes along with huge portions of their retirement savings.  Credit markets froze and taxpayer money was used to purchase toxic assets from the… Continue reading What Can You Learn from the Subprime Mortgage Crisis?

Three Lessons from The Millionaire Next Door

The Millionaire Next Door is my favorite personal finance book because of three life-changing lessons it imparts, all supported by mountains of research data gathered and analyzed by two professors, Thomas Stanley and William Danko.  These lessons provided me with a financial enlightenment when I was first learning the basics of personal finance, and I suspect… Continue reading Three Lessons from The Millionaire Next Door

Psychology and Fear in Personal Finance

Be fearful when others are greedy.  Be greedy when others are fearful. -Warren Buffet Warren Buffet is one of the most successful investors of recent times and provided this great quote in 2008 during the height of the subprime mortgage crisis.  During the 2007-2009 bear market, the S&P 500 lost over 50% of its value… Continue reading Psychology and Fear in Personal Finance

Investment+Savings Challenge

One of my personal financial goals is to become financially independent.  For those unfamiliar with the term, I define financial independence as follows:  A state in which financial assets generate sufficient income to pay for a chosen lifestyle.  In layman’s terms:  More assets = good, combined with fewer expenses = better. Financial Independence = Passive… Continue reading Investment+Savings Challenge

Great Personal Finance Podcasts

One of my favorite things to do on long drives is listen to personal finance podcasts.  There are a handful that I have found (so far) to be better than the rest: My favorite podcast is Afford Anything with host Paula Pant, as she combines an entertaining delivery with great guest speakers.  Paula encourages listeners… Continue reading Great Personal Finance Podcasts

Measuring Progress – Tracking Net Worth

As we budget, save, grow our income, and practice self-control in spending, it’s important to have a method for tracking progress.  After all, if we are indeed working to improve our financial lives, shouldn’t we have a way to measure our improvement (or regression)? I have a coworker who has turned into a terrific friend and… Continue reading Measuring Progress – Tracking Net Worth

Compounding Interest – Why You Should REALLY Start Saving Now

In my previous post, I illustrated the power of time and compounding interest.  In my example, I showed what periodically putting money into a savings account bearing .8% interest can do over time.  This .8% figure is what a popular, large online bank is currently yielding in its savings accounts. As I illustrated, here is… Continue reading Compounding Interest – Why You Should REALLY Start Saving Now

Compounding Interest – Why You Should Start Saving Now

My friend Lisa called me on tax day this year for savings advice and wanted answers regarding whether to open an IRA, how much to put in savings, and several other questions aimed at “let’s put together my financial portfolio on this phone call.”  I gave her my best shot with the caveat that financial… Continue reading Compounding Interest – Why You Should Start Saving Now