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Category: Retirement

Don’t Raid Your Retirement Accounts

Don’t Raid Your Retirement Accounts

Let’s be honest, we all run into a bad patch financially once in a while. We might lose our jobs, have extra expenses that we didn’t see coming, increased debt because of an illness or death in the family or sometimes we just plain overspend. In these situations, our immediate impulse is to get out of the jam as quickly as possible and if we don’t have the money saved in an emergency fund one of the impulses that people…

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Teachers Unite: One Leg to Stand On

Teachers Unite: One Leg to Stand On

34 months ago I started this blog to tell the world about my personal finance journey. I hoped that my story of monetary stupidity would help others not make the same mistakes I had made. This blog also became a way of keeping myself accountable with specific goals and the like. But a third reason, which I haven’t talked about a lot, that I decided to start this blog is that I didn’t see a lot personal finance blogs that…

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Let’s Talk About Target Date Mutual Funds

Let’s Talk About Target Date Mutual Funds

The wonderful bloggers over at Millennial Revolution had an excellent post last week they entitled “Is Too Much Freedom Bad For You?” Personally, I think the answer to that question depends on the person. Politicians constantly promote the idea of freedom. More choices will drive down the market. The amount of choices we have on the internet is fantastic. The amount of television shows makes this a great time to be a fan of TV. That maybe true in the…

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How to Evaluate Mutual Funds

How to Evaluate Mutual Funds

Last week I talked about strategies I try to use to conquer the fear of missing out. Part of that post was focusing on staying the economic course. Part of my course is a focus on buying cheap, index funds. In fact, many personal finance bloggers (it might be most, but not all) also adhere to this rule. Warren Buffett has even argued his financial advice to people would be to stick their money in a low-cost index fund. I…

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Our/Your Savings Rate

Our/Your Savings Rate

  One of the things that financial planners and professionals constantly complain about is the low savings rates among Americans. The average saving rate in the United States is 5.7%, which is woefully under the 10-15% that people recommend you save for retirement/other things. In the ROB household, we are saving about 20-25% for retirement and I hope to kick that number up even further. However, is the 5.7% really the savings rate in America? How should we calculate it?…

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Are You “Retirement Free”?

Are You “Retirement Free”?

I don’t know what it is lately but I have been reading and writing a lot about retirement, even though I have no plans for retirement any time soon. This past weekend I had a great time talking with a couple of colleagues about retirement, finance in general, and our discipline. I get a high off of helping others, talking about these items and I am not sure why. Now what does this have to do with this post. Well,…

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What is Your FIRE Number?

What is Your FIRE Number?

In the title of this post some of you may not know what FIRE stands for. FIRE stands for Financial Independence, Retire Early. Well in the personal finance blogosphere one of the big things is determining when you can achieve financial independence (e.g. what date, what amount you need, etc). Since I began writing this blog just over 2 1/2 years ago I said that I had three goals: To track my debate repayment progress. To hold myself accountable to…

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Financial Tip Friday: Do You Need A Financial Adviser?

Financial Tip Friday: Do You Need A Financial Adviser?

Yesterday on the way home from work I was listening to a fascinating interview on NPR with the author of the book Death of Expertise. I went out and immediately ordered the book. The interview sparked a number of questions about anti-intellectualism in America, the fallacy of reasoning by anecdote, the lack of trust in our institutions, etc. It is also got me thinking about personal finance and how many people actually seek out financial advice from a specific expert? If…

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Track Your Finances With Personal Capital

Track Your Finances With Personal Capital

Before I begin this post I should note that I use Personal Capital to track my expenses, but I am not affiliated with the company. I get no money or anything for promoting their services (although I wish I did). One of the things that can improve any financial situation is tracking your finances. I actually track some of my finances with three different services. Specifically, I use Credit Karma, Mint, and Personal Capital. I like Credit Karma because it…

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The #1 Rule of Personal Finance

The #1 Rule of Personal Finance

If look at personal finance articles there are all kinds of rules to pay down debt, budget, buying a house, etc. However, all of those rules pale in comparison to the #1 rule of personal finance. That rule is: PAY YOURSELF FIRST!!! What Does Pay Yourself First Mean? So now you know the rule, but you may not know how to carry it out. What does it mean? Does it mean you physically take your paycheck and give yourself some…

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