Welcome to the 150th edition of the Carnival of Personal Finance. It amazes me to see the 150 number there. I had grand notions of tying all 115 accepted submissions into a good story. However, with the Comcast outage in my area yesterday, I scrambled today to get all the submissions in the form that you see below. Though I wasn’t always working at full speed, it took 16 hours to read the articles, write the blurb that you see below, and add my comments after most of them. If it took me 16 hours for just this, imagine the hundreds of hours these authors put in to write these articles for your enjoyment. When I say it like that how can you not read them, right? ;-)
- One of my favorite articles this week comes from Harvesting Dollars. He writes that you should Prepare For A Recession Or Job Loss With 2 Budgets. I keep a Budget B as described, but it’s not really a budget rather than a number that I call my necessary expenses. I try to keep my side business income (after taxes) above this number. This makes my regular income a bonus.
- The Digerati Life has another of my favorite articles this week. She submits a collection of 20 Ways To Earn More and Spend Less.
- The Happy Rock suggests you sleep your way to better finances. It’s probably not what you think, which helped earn it’s place in the Editor’s Choice section.
- Think Your Way to Wealth has a list of lies we tell ourselves while spending money. I know I have said a few of these to myself.
- Know the Ledge writes about 10 Things The NFL Draft Can Teach You About Money. A good way to get an Editor’s Pick when I’m hosting is to submit and article about football.
- Cash Money Life wrote about saving money on buying a computer
- Moolanomy writes about 25 ways to save money on health care.
- No Credit Needed has a $100-a-day-rule to prevent impulse buying..
- Money Crashers writes about ten inexpensive ways to be green.
- Accumulating Money says that saving money is the key to financial success.
- Trees Full of Money gives some great ways to save $1.00 or more on gas.
- Money and Fitness Blog gives some tips for saving money on a honeymoon. I like the idea of waiting two days after the wedding. We waited a full four months.
- The Personal Financier writes about four basic tools for saving money by analyzing your budget. I find that Mint’s tools are helpful in this area.
- Tight Fisted Miser has an interesting tip to save money and the environment – don’t have children. Controversial, stuff. I’ll simply say that the exponential technology gains that we’ve seen in history might be due to the expanding population and the result of more smart people.
- Escape From the Cube writes about edible estates, the idea that you should turn your front yard into a garden. I don’t think it needs to be your front yard, but I can see an advantage to having a garden somewhere.
- Alpha Consumer writes about tweaking ingredients to save bit.
- Sound Money Matters gives some ideas to save money and the environment by reducing, reusing, and recycling.
- Finessing My Financials wrote how to benefit even more from your Flexible Savings Account.
- Chief Family Officer writes five lessons learned to reduce stress and cost in car buying.
- Oh My Aching Debts is investigating urban homesteading as a frugal choice.
- Get Financially Fit has some creative ideas to help you live within your means. I’m going to rebel and continue to make those sinister left-hand turns ;-).
- Greener Pastures presents eleven websites that will save you time and money. As much as I like Alltop, I find myself spending lots of time there – not saving it.
- Saving to Invest gives ideas on how to save $29 in minutes. I usually search for merchant discounts.
- Hustler Money Blog jokes about applying for food stamps. I don’t think it’s much of a joking matter, but he gives great steps for applying for food stamps.
- One Frugal Girl is saving pennies, but wasting dollars. This is exactly why I haven’t switched to paperless billing.
- Feminist Finance is saving money with community supported agriculture.
- Mighty Bargain Hunter has seven wise uses for $600 stimulus package. It seems like I’m going to use it to travel overseas – not exactly what the government had in mind.
- The Dividend Guy details his sector allocation of his portfolio. It looks a little overweighted in the banking and financial areas if you ask me.
- Amateur Asset Allocator won’t be investing in the Vanguard Global Stock Index Fund. I’m Lazy so this fund seems like a good one-stop shop for most people. However, like AAA, I will create my own asset allocation and save on the expenses.
- Money Ning asks if it’s better to have consistent income or one-time payment. I’ll take consistent income so the money doesn’t get eaten by inflation.
- Dividends4Life says that you should put your dividend investing on auto-pilot.
- Dividend Growth has created a dividend achievers watchlist. I’ll make the suggestion that an HTML table of this would make it more readable.
- The Financial Blogger writes about the real benefit of mutual funds. Despite the argument here, I still like ETFs better.
- Beyond Paycheck to Paycheck asks if a 401k loan is a friend or foe. I go with foe – there are just too many potential downsides.
- Growing Money has stock picking contest with prizes.
- Can I Get Rich on a Salary writes about angel advertising and 20-40% investment returns.
- My Dollar Plan has a great retirement checklist. With it broken down to 43 simple steps, anyone can follow it.
- Living the Cheap Life asks how much a penny is worth. A few pennies saved up could add up to a retirement.
- The Writer’s Coin writes about the similarities between financial statements and baseball statistics. I’m going to have to have a little side conversation with him about the value of RBIs as a statistic ;-).
- Millionaire Money Habits explains the difference between a bank and credit union.
- Broke Grad Student writes about some unusual ways to make money for college.
- Funny About Money asks if college students should have to study personal finance. I say no. Middle and high school students should have to study personal finance.
- Your Finish Rich Plan presents Making Money Is Easy, Keeping Money Is Hard.
- Save and Conquer explains how Short ETFs really work.
- Be Thrift Like Us suggests that you open your 401k quarterly statements with caution. It can be a little scary to see thousands of dollars disappear, but you should already know this is possible.
- Prime Time Money writes an open letter to a high school graduate.
- Four Pillars asks if the sky is falling with underwater subprime mortgage. I agree with his point in the article, but I there’s significant research that says one foreclosure affects a whole neighborhood. The fear is that if you don’t help out these people, your own property could fall in value through no fault of your own. What happens if home values drop in half across the board and nearly everyone is underwater. It could be a very bad situation for even the responsible ones. This is discussed in Living After Foreclosure’s article Now we have to worry about our neighbor’s finances.
- Smart Money Daily gives some tips for selling your home yourself. If I need to sell my home, I will look at the Iggy’s House service.
- Searchlight Crusade writes why buyers should avoid short sales. I’ve often found that the word “short sale” is often a code for good bargain.
- One Million and Beyond writes about House Hunting in an Uncertain Market. Though the author is in Canada and I don’t know that real estate market, in my opinion there are starting to be some good buying opportunities in the United States.
- A website with a really long title writes an article with an similiarly long title… It’s about not letting your mortgage company pay your insurance and taxes.
- Millionaire Mommy Next Door asks if it’s time to buy a home yet.
- Me vs. Debt discusses building an emergency fund.
- Advanced Personal Finance writes about student loan relief. Don’t feel that you have to be advanced to understand. The basics are covered here, who should , why one should, and how to consolidate a student loans.
- Discover Debt Freedom says don’t worry about your credit score. My take is that it’s true that you don’t need to have a good credit score in life… but it’s not an experiment I would want to try.
- Destroy Debt writes about how she stretches her dollars. Lots of good tips here, but I’m not convinced about the advice to drop a cell phone – I see it as safety precaution in case a number of things happen, like your car breaking down.
- The Wisdom Journal gives seven tips for living debt free. I’m not going to make my own laundry detergent any time soon either.
- One Snarky Chica With Issues is “watching others be less than financially savvy.”
- My Family’s Money writes about how you can simplify your savings.
- Monroe on a Budget had a washing machine die. Read about how they are looking to replace it.
- Uncommon Cents is keeping his personal finance training wheels.
- PaidTwice says that she enjoys the idea of some things more than the reality. I think nearly everyone could say that.
- You Might as Well Burn $5 has a financial rant.
- Pennies to Nickels got a major raise and it looks like she’s going to be socking away some of that money.
- Thicken My Wallet gives some tips for being a good employee. In reviewing this list, nearly any employee could learn something from it.
- Sick of Being Poor is interviewing for a new job.
- The DebtFree Playbook Blog writes six steps to get any fee reduced.
- Military Finance Network explains how the economic stimulus rebate will affect military members.
- Five Cent Nickel writes about the best jobs in a bad economy. To answer his question at the end of the article, I think it’s mostly about the study and the growth rate of their income.
- One Caveman’s Financial Journey says that a recession could do America some good. I agree that the recession will make America more efficient.
- Fire Finance writes about about a million for a cup of tea. That catch is that it’s not US dollars. At the end, he asks for a solution for hedging against massive inflation, I would suggest investing in other countries and not having 50% of your money in one country.
- Father Sez gives tips for surviving a recession like the 1930’s. Until I see unemployment rising like it did in the 1930’s, I can’t say it’s comparable.
- The Wealthy Accumulator writes about inflation, compounding, and the value of money.
- Big Ideas has a post about how not to be wrong about the economy.
- Free Money Finance writes has a guest post about purchasing power and inflation.
- Wide Open Wallet says children don’t need life insurance. I didn’t realize they sold life insurance for kids. Crazy!
- InsureBlog writes about a disgraceful university health insurance. I’d like to know which university is offering this plan, but it isn’t in the article that I could find.
- Everything Finance writes about 10 Do’s and Don’t for starting a business.
- Antishay Ventenne is building a snowflake business. I’ll continue to just build snow forts with snowflakes. I shouldn’t have said that, because now someone will spin it into an emergency fund shelter metaphor.
- Not the Jet Set writes about the Credit Cardholders Bill of Rights. It’s about time that some regulation came in. I look forward to seeing at least some positive changes coming from this.
- Money Blue Book gives some arguments for and against carrying multiple reward credit cards.
- Ask Mr. Credit Card reviews credit card recommended by Consumer Reports.
- Credit Addict explains why Fed rate cuts lead credit card rate increases.
- Blueprint for Financial Prosperity has the top 5 online banks
- Mrs. Nespy’s World write gives some great tips for preparing for the worst case scenario. I’ve been very Lazy setting some of these up.
- Financial Learn writes a budgeting primer.
- Right Invest and Strategy explains how to think and act like a millionaire at 20.
- My Small Cents discusses health care in France.
- Saving Freak gives some tips on how to make money from your techno-waste.
- Dreaming of Ferraris and her husband are on the same financial page. I have to say that, given the depreciation of cars, saving up for an NSX doesn’t sound like the path to a Ferrari to me.
- My Retirement Blog asks what is a certified financial planner.
- Seven million in seven years gives 10 steps to weighing the cost of a lifestyle decision.
- Savings Advice writes about the financial challenge of jury duty. When I was a salaried employee this was not an issue. If I were called now it really would impact my earnings.
- The Money Kings write about what do to do with all the extra money from Iraq. I would suggest health care and social security fixes for two.
- Paradigm Shifted does good by trying to eliminate junk mail.
- On Financial Success recommends traveling through time by paying your mortgage early.
- Credit Withdrawal loves online banking and tells you why you should.
- Smart Easy Money asks when do you let things go.
- Adult Add and Money has a love and hate relationship with money.
- Finance Get Personal asks about the definition of living paycheck to paycheck. I vote for #2 as the best definition.
- Squakfox details five ways to find your passion.
- American Consumer News writes about 7 Ways to Save for a Great Last-Minute Vacation.
- Phil for Humanity says that you should plan for the long term.
- The Industry Report has 5 tips to prepare for a layoff.
- Help My Cash Grow writes about bright sides and green grass. I guess silver linings didn’t make the cliche cut.
- Pasadena Financial Planner writes about where to put your money.
Photo Credit: Ennor