It's always enjoyable to host and see people's submissions for the Carnival of Personal Finance. I always learn something new.
It's hard to believe that this is Carnival #201. It continues to get more popular.
Anyway, here are this week's included posts, categorized for your viewing pleasure. I hope you learn something new, too! Next week, FIRE Finance is on the slab. Have a great week!
- The Paycheck Chronicles gives ten good ways to shop safely online. The Internet's a great place to find deals, but be smart!
- Wealth Pilgrim asks, “Who will spend your beneficiary's money?” Just setting up a trust isn't enough. He explain what else is necessary.
- Uh oh! Moneymonk is mad at Suze Orman! Whatever did she do to you, Moneymonk?
- Quest for Four Pillars has some sources for free tax filing software for (Canadian) students and low-income folks. “Canadian deadline is Apr 30 so it's still applicable,” he says.
- Suburban Dollar has a bread-and-butter tutorial on budgeting and knowing your spending. Good checklist of spending categories there.
- Bargaineering (or, the blog formerly known as Blueprint for Financial Prosperity) discusses the government's Making Home Affordable Mortgage Refinance & Modification Program.
- Sound Money Matters runs through the dos and don'ts of combining finances after the wedding. (Combining our finances was something I did without thinking because it was what my parents had done, and it worked out all right for us, but it just as easily could have backfired.)
- Personal Finance Start-Up Blog chats about high-interest rate checking accounts. (And about the Braves.)
- American Consumer News advises proceeding with caution when adult kids want to return home.
- Ask Mr Credit Card responds to some readers' comments about his take on Suze Orman's advice.
- Free From Broke advises discussing your finances before tying the knot so that money doesn't ruin the marriage. (And I'll add keep discussing it after tying the knot, too!)
- Cash Money Life says to give generously, even (especially?) during rough times.
- Beating Broke contends that personal finance is a life skill.
- Five Cent Nickel hosts a guest post containing lessons learned on a shuttle ride at the car dealer.
- Free Money Finance highlights Nicolas Cage as “one more example that you CAN spend it all no matter how much you make.”
- Christian Personal Finance lists six things you can buy that will pay for themselves in a year. (One of them surprised me.)
- 6Bubbles runs through a few questions to ask when deciding whether to buy that sale item or not.
- And Art of the Coupon, hot on their heels, outlines five questions to ask before any purchase.
- What's frugal, and what's just cheap? My Findependence Day delves into this topic.
- Fine-Tuned Finances weighs options on whether to fix that old computer or buy a new one.
- Fiscal Fizzle (great name!) runs through seven ways to stop eating out from killing your budget.
- Christian Money Mountain suspects gas prices are on the way up again and gives some mileage-improving tips.
- Almost Frugal goes back to the frugal basics and talks about controlling spending.
- Budgets are Sexy wonders if coupon lovers are treated differently by employees. (If I even suspected that a business didn't like me using a coupon, I'd probably never go back.)
- Penny For My Thoughts discusses menstrual cups as a recession beater. (This is beyond my experience, of course.)
- Savings Toolbox asks how efficient CF bulbs are. (Apparently efficient enough to pay for themselves in a year.)
- PayLessForFood explains why now is the perfect time to try store-brand products.
- Million Dollar Journey recommends banking your raises. (Very sound advice.)
- Finance for Physicians outlines some moving tips specific to new physicians that can save money and hassle.
- My Life ROI gives some ideas on what to do with all of that extra money. (Fortunate position to be in, no?)
- Erik Folgate describes some automation and subaccount magic you can do with your ING savings account.
- Automatic Finances reinforces this by giving five reasons you should be automating your savings.
- PennyJobs wonders if a depression is inevitable. (Love the smoking analogy in this post.)
- Always the Planner explains what financial security means to her. (I understand the save-too-much thing.)
- Good Financial Cents outlines seven questions to ask your financial planner.
- InsureBlog advises looking into DI PDQ ASAP, because “all the great finance tips in the world can't help you if you lose your income.”
- Pecuniarities challenges us: “If you've never fallen off a horse, you just haven't ridden enough.” (Try to brace yourself for the falls, though! This isn't an excuse to file for bankruptcy!)
- Out of Debt Again predicts that your check should get bigger in April, and explains why.
- Green Panda Treehouse shares tips on saving money on health insurance, doctor visits, and prescriptions.
- Deposit Accounts brings a gardening analogy to bear on the concept of reducing debt and increasing saving.
- Triaging My Way To Financial Success (yes, he's in healthcare!) shows how to determine a master portfolio allocation.
- ABCs of Investing gives a brief description of investment policy statements.
- FIRE Finance visits an old friend: the Rule of 72.
- Dividends Value analyzes Nucor Corporation and Caterpillar in the context of the recession and how they responded to it.
- Money Ning discusses the impact of costs on mutual fund returns.
- Darwin's Finance (survival of the fiscally fittest?) wonders if Advanta high-yield notes are worth the risk.
- Stock Trading To Go is skeptical of bear market rallies.
- Dividend Growth Investor presents some covered call option strategies for hedging against losses.
- Chief Family Officer suggests a way to avoid getting killed by one rotten investment.
- Financial Highway gives an insider view on advisor conflict of interest.
- Generation X Finance is wary of trying to time the market.
- Go To Retirement discusses the risks and benefits of owning gold for retirement.
- Prime Time Money talks on the topic of tax-deferred and tax-free retirement plans.
- Modern Gal wonders how various markets will hold up under inflation.
- The Sun's Financial Diary has a discount broker comparison.
- IntelligentSpeculator has an, ummmm, unusual investment opportunity. (“I take it you're not Capt. Crunch, sir?”)
- The Smarter Wallet reviews Microsoft Money and discusses a bunch of the features of the program.
- The Digerati Life show whether TradeKing measures up to the competition.
- Harvesting Dollars wonders if the Bank On Yourself strategy is for real.
- Personal Finance Software Reviews reviews NeoBudget.
- Beyond Paycheck to Paycheck would have liked a little more out of UPromise. (What do you think? I haven't gotten much money out of UPromise, but it's a cash-back program, so I'm not too worried.)
- Paying For Retirement explain why he uses Mint.com for his tracking.
- Man Vs. Debt just doesn't get the concept of married with separate finances.
- Studenomics has some experience with making sure that budgeting works and shares.
Credit and Debt
- Sense to Save characterizes charging her honeymoon was a big financial blunder. (Perhaps, but I wouldn't be beating myself up too much on this one. At least she doesn't regret the honeymoon.)
- Taking Charge recommends a physical reminder to think before swiping that credit card.
- CreditCardAssist observes the sentiment turning against credit cards.
- Erica Douglass has some talk on investing in real estate.
- Funny about Money wonders if real estate: is looking up.
- Apply For Credit discusses whether avoiding payments on your mortgage is a good idea. (I hadn't heard of this as a strategy, but the conclusion seems right.)
- Growing Money posts an update on their Philadelphia rental property.
- Stop Foreclosure Blog has ten fatal mistakes homeowners make.
- Canadian Finance Blog presents a cheaper way to buy timeshares.
- First Recession sees an interesting silver lining to the economy: It's a renter's market.
The Economy and Career
- Weakonomics gives an overview of the Massachusetts economy.
- PlinkPlink can talk the recession talk complete with buzzwords. Can you?
- Passive Family Income outlines the benefits of home-based jobs.
- The Personal Financier gets all deep and stuff, and explores the irony of human nature.
- Money Beagle asks if the Sunday paper is going extinct.
- Tough Money Love questions whether the billions in aid to the states are doing any good.
- Kids & Money has a quickie on summer jobs for kids.
- Yielding Wealth likes getting back as little as possible on her tax return.
- Uh-oh: Steadfast Finances reports that local governments are starting to charge for accident response. (We're going to see more of this, I think.)
- Greener Pastures observes that state budget shortfalls mean higher taxes.
- The Happy Rock does a gross-income retrospective.
- M is for Money explains tax write-offs for 401(k) losses.
- My Dollar Plan answers some last-minute tax questions.
- Money Young asks: “Are you living for today or tomorrow?”
- Keep My Dollar presents eight ways to keep your car running well. Maintaining a vehicle properly will make it cost less.
- Amateur Asset Allocator is keeping the recession in perspective.
- Stumble Forward sheds light on five flags that you might be looking at a scam.
- My Journey to Millions gives some tips for planning for a child with special needs.
- The Strump is finally getting a will.
- Poorer Than You shows how to file the free application for federal student aid without parental information.
- Not strictly personal finance but I love this guy's enthusiasm: Punch Debt In The Face does successful blogging, BTTF style. This guy does money rap for hire, too.