Money and Finance

Managing your money and finances is the key to a life of financial freedom.  Browse money-saving tips and tricks to stretch your dollars further than ever before. Read dozens of great articles to take control of your spending.

From Simple Tips to Develop a Saver’s Attitude to understanding the difference between Paying Down or Paying Ahead to understanding When and Why to Give your Kids an Allowance, we have articles covering every money and finance question you have!

You can do it, we can help, and it starts with the articles here!

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With the Holidays Still Fresh in Mind

Along with taking the tree down and putting the decorations away for another year, there are several things you need
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The Five Questions Readers Ask Most Often

If you were to dive into my inbox, you might assume lots of questions on laundry, copycat recipes, or what
3D HALF PRICE word on white background 3d rendering

Live Your Life for Half the Price

It's a benchmark, a goal, a mindset, a kind of game I play with myself. Whatever the price tag—real or

Would You Rather … ? The Consumer Debt Edition

Just in case they ever decide to create an Everyday Cheapskate Edition of that game, I thought we could have
Bundle of dollars in present box with bow isolated on white

3 Places to Find Extra Cash for Christmas

It's still summer, but it's not too early to start planning for Christmas. If you're ready to make this year
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Like Finding Money You Didn’t Know You Had

You know the feeling when you reach into the pocket of a coat or pants you haven’t worn for a
man writing check to charity

Give But Give Wisely

It’s that time of year again—everyone wants your money. Brace yourself for more dinnertime phone calls and mailbox solicitations. That
Young asian boy wear glasses reading book and smiling while lying for leisure on sofa in the room with happiness.

Want to Become a Successful Investor? Channel Your Inner Second Grader

Recently, I was drawn to a book that was simple to read, easy to understand, and quite charming. In How a
Unhappy Student Holding Empty Purse With Calculator And Bills On Table

Stop Dreaming About Student Debt Relief: 6 Ways to Pay It Off Yourself Fast

You graduated. Great. Good job. You ended up with a degree and a pile of ugly student debt. You say
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The Secret for a Debt-Free Holiday Season

Here we are on the cusp of one more glorious, fabulous, exciting, and joyful holiday season. How can we do
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How to Make Sure You Never Give Insurance Companies Reason to Cancel You

Insurance is a funny thing. You pay a small fortune to have it. Then, if you have the blatant audacity
Sales People in Extended Warranty Class leaning how to Rip Off to increase bottomline

Is an Extended Warranty Worth the Investment? Here’s What You Need to Know

One lovely afternoon, I stopped into a toy store with one of my grandsons to get a little something. Yes,
consumer financial blunders

10 Purchasing Mistakes Keeping You Broke and in Debt

We Americans love to shop and spend money, don’t we? We feel entitled to have what we want right now
frog in a pot of water

My Life as a Frog

I have been told if you attempt to pop a frog into a pot of boiling water he’ll jump out
couple planning a year without spending using laptop

How to Stop Living Paycheck to Paycheck So You Can Start Saving

How much you spend matters much more than how much you earn. The money you don’t spend gives you the
bills and credit cards overspent for christmas

You Overspent on Christmas—3 Ways to Bounce Back

“Why did I buy expensive electronics for the kids when I couldn’t afford them?”, seeing your answer (“I wanted them
Protection of car with cheap car insurance

The Cheapest Car Insurance

Any car insurance company's cheapest premiums are generally the minimum coverage required by your state. This liability insurance covers property

8 Painless Ways to Save Money and Grow a Cash Stash in 2024

The past 12 months have been tough on many people, and higher living costs have made it extremely difficult to

Ask Me Anything: Student Debt, Bi-Weekly Mortgage Payments

This past week saw a barrage of interest-rated mail—student debt, bi-weekly mortgage plans—in my inbox. Lots of news focusing on
young couple perplexed by notice they can skip a payment

Skip a Payment?!

If you ever get an offer from a creditor to skip a payment, I suggest you follow Julie’s example by
A married senior couple seeing a home equity scam artist. The men have reached and agreement and the wife looks angry.

Home Equity Loan Scams

Homeowners beware. These days home loan scam artists are lurking around every corner. They’re hungry, they’re determined, and they’re coming
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Sometimes You Gotta’ Bite the Bullet

Some time ago, I posted a poll asking my Everyday Cheapskate audience, “What would you do with an unexpected windfall
Women shopping in the mall

The Pain and Pleasure Principle vs. The Crazy Fun of Mindless Spending

I don’t care much for pain. In fact, I’ll do almost anything to avoid it. I also know that pain
happy children in car

Careful the Kids are Watching: Raising Financially Responsible Kids

Want your kids to grow up with healthy attitudes about money? Start living the way you want them to become.
money under lock chain to show concept of retirement account

Thinking About Breaking Into Your Retirement Account? That’s a Problem

Seeing a retirement account as a savings account—or worse, a personal ATM—is super risky. Sure it’s your money, but it’s
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8 Strategies to Graduate College Debt-Free

There was a time when I didn’t have much opinion on paying for college with student loans. That was before
family at beach vacation

Would You Put a Teenager In Charge of the Family Vacation Budget?

One of the most memorable letters I’ve received in my writing career came from a reader reporting on how she
couple with phone and computer checking up on all of their insurance policies and coverage to save money

Sick of Huge Insurance Premiums? DIY Insurance Check-up to the Rescue

From regular oil changes to changing furnace filters and annual trips to the dentist, smart consumers know that preventive maintenance
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A Simple Three-Step Budget That Can Change Your Life

Financial budgets are like training wheels: they help you get moving and offer you confidence as you learn how to
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Handling an Inheritance Requires a Game Plan

While not always easy to think about, inheritances are a part of the financial picture for many  Boomers—and just one
consignment shop goods of purses, jewelry, shoes

How to Get the Most Cash for Your Unwanted (But Awesome) Stuff

If you're looking for ways to get cash for stuff you no longer need or want, there are a number
life insurance concept

12 Things About Life Insurance You’ll Wish You’d Known Sooner

The first rule of buying life insurance: Never purchase insurance from the same person who advises you on the type
saving money concept

Broke? Can’t Save? Yes You Can! This is How to Save Money

Your income is low, you say; you’ve got bills to pay. Rents are sky-high, grocery costs are through the roof—who

Financial Planners 101

Over the past few months, I’ve noticed a growing trend in my mailbox—readers in search of financial planners or advisors.
family using mobile devices

7 Simple Ways to Make Sure You Don’t Hit Your Mobile Data Plan Limits

Follow these tips to cut back on your smartphone data habit, track and monitor your usage, and stretch your data
women asking common money questions

Most Common Money Questions Women Ask

I recently asked a group of women of all ages to tell me the money questions they most wanted to
car keys

Your Money Temperament and Why it Matters

Whether you're aware of it or not, you do have a money temperament. Everyone does. It's the way you naturally

Stop Paying for Things You Don’t Need and Still Live the Life You Love

Imagine how much cash you’d have right now if you could get a do-over on all the thoughtless purchases—money wasters—you’ve
Credit cards. Financial business background.

Breaking Up (with a Credit Card) is Hard to Do

It's a lot easier to open a credit card account than to close one! Let's just say that when it
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Yes, You Can Save Money!

How’s your health? Not your physical fitness, but your financial well-being. For most of us, how much we earn tells
US coins and bills

7 Places to Look for Free Money

It's been several years now since I got a super fun letter from a reader who has developed a hobby
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The 7-Day All-Cash Challenge

Here’s the challenge: No plastic whatsoever for the next seven days. Of course you shouldn’t send cash through the mail
Man with binoculars in a field looking for money

Piles of Money Waiting To Be Found

It’s a long story how Matt and Jenny lost 5,000 shares of Texaco-Canada stock. But they did. They believed their
open a paper envelope with the dollars tied with red ribbon and bow.

A Mostly Complete Guide to Tipping During the Holiday Season

It is a social custom in this country to give cash gifts—also referred to as tips or gratuities—during the holiday
couple planning a year without spending using laptop

Could You Go a Year Without Spending?

A few years back, Eric and Donna Reed shopped for groceries and household products only once a year. How on
A person sitting at a table using a laptop computer

22 Legit Ways You Can Make Money at Home

For all the convenience and access to information that the Internet offers, the ability to earn money at home—honestly and

Your Very Own Hedge Fund

Several years ago, when gas prices were at their highest in Los Angeles, I paid $4.26 a gallon—$102 to fill
female hands signing legal documents

The 5 Legal Documents Every Adult Needs and How to Get Them

There are at least five important legal documents every responsible adult needs to have. This is not difficult nor particularly

5 Ways to Use a Tax Refund to Make Your Life Better

Discovering that you’ll be getting a tax refund is certainly not the worst news you’ve had in your life. In
A boy lying on the grass

Great Dates for Couples on a Tight Budget

Wallet a little thin this Valentine season? That shouldn’t mean you cancel all dates until things begin to look up
Cash and Dollar

Simple Ways to REALLY Save Money This Year

Getting started with savings— money that you actually put away in a safe place, can be difficult if you don't
Close-up Of Thermostat And Piggy Bank With Eyeglasses On Radiator Against White Wall

Easy DIY Ways to Control The Cost to Heat Your Home This Winter

The headlines are sobering: Home Heating Costs Expected to Skyrocket This Winter Home Heating Costs Expected to be 30-60% Higher

9 Easy Moves to Simplify the Way You Manage Money

Confused and stressed out about how to manage your money so you don't run out before payday? Put these nine
A book

You Need an Allowance: How to Spend Money Without Feeling Guilty

When you give yourself an allowance, it's more than just cash—you give yourself the freedom to spend without feeling guilty.
Natural woolen yarn and knitting on vintage wooden background.

The Secret to Keeping Your Finances in the Black

Managing money well is not difficult. It's all the dumb little mistakes we make that we don't stop to fix

You Need an Emergency Fund (How to Get Started!)

Emergencies are a fact of life. When faced with an unexpected event that has dollar signs written all over it,

How to Win the Credit Card Balance Transfer Game

There’s nothing fun about credit card debt. An outstanding balance of $5,000 subject to 19.99% interest means you’re paying about
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How to Help Someone You Love Build Credit and Boost Credit Score

These days, it's not easy for a young person without financial experience to build credit and a respectable credit score.
A man that is standing in the grass

5 Home Buying Mistakes That Will Make You House Poor

Buying a home is likely the largest purchase you will ever make. This is not the time to make mistakes

How to Live on a Budget and Love It

For many years I wouldn’t have anything to do with a budget because I couldn’t stand the idea of anyone—or
empty wallet - woman with no money in purse shopping. Female

Your Consumer Behaviors Are Keeping You Broke!

Our consumer behaviors—the ways we react and respond in stores and online—can unwittingly keep us broke! Truth be told, merchants

How to Break Bad Money Habits

Money a little tight these days? You might assume it’s due to rising costs, tightening credit and the fact you
Worried couple going over finances at home in living room

What to Do If You Don’t Have Enough Money to Pay All of Your Bills

It might be the skyrocketing cost of fuel and food. Or perhaps you’ve lost your job or you’ve already been
A cellphone

25 Ways to Save $1,000 on Monthly Expenses

A number of years ago, I met Kathryn and Galen. They’d won a contest sponsored by Woman’s Day magazine. The
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Ask Me Anything: Online Savings Banks, Opossums, XL Bed Sheets, Stinky Refrigerator, and More

I love to hear from my readers. I encourage you to write to me, and for that, I get hundreds
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The Ugly Truth About No-Interest No-Payments Offers

Have you ever wondered how retailers can possibly afford to offer the no-interest, no-payments kind of deals you see advertised?
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How to Store Important Documents and How Long To Keep Them

If the paper monster has you buried under an avalanche of receipts, bank statements, ATM slips, investment records, paycheck stubs,
Assets - Home Equity An illustration related to home equity, real estate and personal finance.

How to Stop Worrying Your Housing Bubble Is About to Burst

You bought the biggest home they said you could qualify, taking advantage of low rates and creative financing. Who knew
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Shopping With Cash is Still the Best Way to Save Money

It used to be so easy to shop with cash. Get cash. Shop. But things have changed, perhaps you've noticed.
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How to Survive an Income Crisis

The news is shocking—millions of people being laid off or furloughed from their jobs is unthinkable. How do we wrap
A man looking at the camera

Cheap, Yes, But Not at the Expense of Others

Living below your means requires a good bit of creativity from time to time. You have to get pretty clever
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The Best Way to Get Cash Back (It Really Works!)

I could teach you how to be an extreme couponer. I've had a lot of experience, including the time I
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How to Take the Pain Out of Saving Loose Change

I am not one to spend coins. I prefer to save my pocket change. In fact, I go out of
Car and Sales

No More Car Payments: How to Buy the Car of Your Dreams with All Cash

Let’s say that tomorrow morning you wake up to discover that overnight—gulp!—your car was destroyed beyond repair. You’re not covered
A woman looking at a laptop

Your Best Money Year Ever

For years (and years), I lived under a dark cloud of worry that I would end up financially destitute—a bag

The 1-Percent Savings Solution

It might be difficult to imagine how such a small change could make any difference at all, but this strategy
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How to Stay on Track with a Rollercoaster Income

If you are among the millions of people in this country who don’t really know how or when they will
money in wallet USD

7 Quick and Easy Ways to Give Yourself a Tax-Free Raise

Is money a little tight? Hoping a raise will come through soon? I hate to burst your bubble, but even
The credits cards and the bills on the table. The number and personal ID of the credit card has been removed or replaced from the original one to prevent unnecessary things.

How to Improve Your Credit Score

Credit scores are used extensively these days. If you rent an apartment, get braces, buy cell phone service, apply for
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Stop Taking Parent Loans for Your Kids’ College Education

You’re a parent, and you are responsible for taking care of your minor child financially. But you are equally responsible
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11 Money Savers That Will Pay for Themselves in a Year or Less

Gadgets that do cool stuff are awesome. And when they also function to save money? That is amazing. Consider these
Young female college freshman with no clue how to manage money

How to Manage Money: Crash Course for College Freshmen and Others, Too

All around the country, newly-minted high school graduates are heading off to college. They’ll be taking a lot of things
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15 Minutes to Financial Freedom

The email message contained a single-word subject: Help! The sender, I’ll call her Emily, had been asked by her community
A man sitting in a car

How Not to Feel Poor on a Fixed Income

It’s no secret that more and more people—especially seniors on fixed incomes—are sinking deeper into credit card debt. Why is
A fish swimming under water

Your Own Personal Loan Shark

Imagine paying outrageous amounts of interest to a greedy finance company and loving every minute of it. Or how about

What Happens to My Good Credit Score When I Get Married?

While planning a wedding and their new life together, most couples aren't thinking about how marriage might affect their credit.
A close up of a hand

Money Leaks That May Be Draining Your Wallet Dry

Stop wasting money on goods and services that don’t matter in the long run and you could see the equivalent
Excited couple seeing their tax refund status sitting on a sofa in the living room at home

5 Really Dumb Things You Could Do With a Tax Refund

Tax time—that interesting time of year when ordinarily smart people begin to make really dumb financial decisions. Isn’t it amazing
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How to Save Money and Get Financially Confident Starting Now

For a good deal of my life, I lived under a dark cloud of fear that I would end up
shop online cash

How to Safely Shop Online and Pay With CASH!

You really can shop with CASH online at Amazon, Target, Kohl's, Walmart ... absolutely no credit card or debit card
A woman sitting at a table using a laptop

7 Habits of the Rich

Habit is defined as behavior repeated so often it becomes almost automatic. I am in awe of the power of
a happy young woman holding up a credit card while standing outside.

This Is What Happens When Financially Immature Students Get a Credit Card

Our kids are fortunate to be growing up in the most progressive and exciting time in history. Sadly, the very

Common Money Myths and How to Stop Believing Them

The wedding was complicated and expensive. But it’s over and you are ready to settle back and enjoy your new
hand with a calculator. money saving concept.

Saving Money by Choice, Not by Chance

A question that I answered in a previous post brought a small avalanche of mail, mostly from readers who were
US Pennies shiny new

16 Facts and Uses for the One-Cent Piece That are Worth Every Penny

For some people, pennies are so annoying, they don’t even bother picking up strays that end up on sidewalks and
Portrait Of A Worried Couple Calculating Financial Budget

What is the Real Hourly Wage of Your Second Income?

Most families these days assume it takes two incomes to survive. And many would be shocked if they just took

Secrets of the Frugal Lifestyle

I'll admit I used to think frugality was a distasteful lifestyle forced upon the poor. I believed "frugal" was synonymous
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How to Get $1,000 Into Your Emergency Fund Almost Painlessly

The most important thing you can do to make your personal economy strong is to have an umbrella—an emergency fund
A hand taking a receipt of an Automated Teller Machine

With ATM Receipts and Legal Guardians, Leave Nothing to Chance

Face it, life is uncertain. We cannot know the future, but that doesn't mean we should just throw caution to
Surprised man looking at store receipt after shopping, holding a paper bag with healthy food. Guy in the kitchen. Real people expression. Inflation concept.

Highly Effective Food Cost-Cutting Strategies for Every Lifestyle

Ever wonder why you never have enough money to consistently save some of it for emergencies? I'm talking about consistent,
child counting managing money

5 Reasons to Give Kids an Allowance

At the foundation of a person's financial intelligence should be this undeniable truth: It is not the amount of money
scary halloween vignette of pumpkins and ghosts

Spooky Tales of Scary Tricks Waiting to Be Played on You

Blood-curdling stories, tricks. and treats are all part of Halloween fun. But the last thing we expect are spooky tales

With Sincere Apologies to Pawnshops Everywhere

In the wake of America’s big economic wake-up call back in 2008, dollar stores and thrift stores saw—and continue to
money with stethescope

Give Yourself an Extreme Money Makeover

There’s nothing like a job-layoff notice, getting a call from the bank saying you’ve bounced your account to the moon—or
Handsome man at dentist's office in clinic

Put a Beautiful Smile on Your Face with a Dental Savings Plan

Dental Savings Plans are membership plans, similar to the way a person becomes a member of Costco, pays an annual
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The Mind-Blowing Secrets Retailers Don’t Want You to Know

Same As Cash!, Nothing Down, No Interest, No Payments Until Next Summer! ... or a very popular one these days,
Grandma and grandchildren reading book together

9 Best Money Books for Kids and Teens

If you have kids in your life age 3 and up to young adult, consider these excellent books to get those
Letter and Writing

How to Live the Life You Love on Your Current Income

I’ll never forget the time I asked one of my young piano students what he wanted for Christmas. It was
Woman putting money in her wallet

How to Give Yourself a $2,000 Raise in a Hurry

If there’s one thing that I love about you, my loyal readers, it’s how responsive you are. Sometimes you like
A person standing in front of a brick building

This is Contentment: Want What You Have, Buy What You Need

Years ago, I read in The New York Times that according to Yankelovich Research, the average American adult is the
A person sitting on a bed

How to Splurge on a Budget

I got the biggest shock of my life the day I realized that living on a budget wasn’t the straitjacket
high gas price, arm and leg

17 Ways to Cut the Price of Gasoline

Only a few months ago I paid $1.87 a gallon for gas in Thornton, Colo. That's less than half what
woman ironing man's shirt

How to Turn What You Love Doing into a Side Hustle

I’ll bet you’re really good at something. Cooking, organization, gardening, cleaning, sewing, knitting, computing, driving—the list could go on and
Happy Faces

What Do You Need to Be Happy?

In your heart do you believe that more money would make you happier? How much would it take to make
closeup rear view of frustrated woman scratching chalkboard

Would You Rather Stick a Fork in Your Eye or Talk About Budgets?

For lots of people, just thinking the word “budget” is like nails on a chalkboard. I know the feeling. For many

I’d Rather Have the Money, Bob

Did you see us? My husband and I were on TV with Bob Barker. Before you run to check your

4 Reasons to Kick the Credit Card Habit

There are many reasons not to carry credit card debt, like this: It's expensive! Even if you don't carry cc
Credit report with score on a desk

3 Ways to Boost Your Credit Score

What credit score is good? Sound like a super easy question, right? Well, it's not. In fact, there is no
Two people passing a stack of one hundred dollar bills from hand to hand.

Should You Lend Money to Family, Friends? Read This First

Over the years I’ve heard from dozens of readers who have lent money to friends and family members, only to
A woman talking on a cell phone

Pay Down or Pay Ahead? It Can Be Confusing

Years ago I learned a lesson I won’t have to learn again. It was that poignant. It was during a
A stack of currency chained together and padlocked. Used for any money inference where money is tight or protected.

The Truth About Joy and Living Well, Below Your Means

Even the mention of words like frugality and thrift send some people over the edge because, for them, those words