february 2016 expense report

February 2016 Expense Report

February Overview Beginning with January 2016 and continuing for each following month, I’m going to be providing an in-depth look at my spending for the month and progress towards the goals I set for the year. My hope is that by making my spending public it will make me more accountable for my expenses and pressure me to continue to make positive change. Additionally, I think it will be good for people to see that it is entirely possible to lead a contented life without extravagant or wasteful spending. February was another quiet month and my spending is once again […]

mental accounting

Mental Accounting: It’s a Trap

The phrase “mental accounting” sounds like it’d be a great thing. Who wouldn’t want to balance their checkbook with absolute precision completely in their head? In reality, mental accounting can be a dangerous financial trap to fall into. Mental accounting refers to people’s tendency to categorize or bucketize their money based on either the source of the income or an arbitrarily assigned purpose for specific funds. While this might not sound terrible, it can create issues in the way money is spent. Essentially, mental accounting leads to abnormal or illogical spending patterns because of biases in the way money is […]

keep your eyes on your own budget

Keep Your Eyes on Your Own Budget

As you begin to get your finances in order a lot of things become clear. Spending is rarely the path to happiness. Often, it creates many more problems than it solves. Instead, aggressive saving is the ticket to a lifetime of wealth. So why can’t everyone see it? I mean, it’s so obvious, right? As a financial wizard (or apprentice), you may begin to observe that the average person does not seem to grasp what you consider to be clear financial mistakes (or sometimes complete disasters). Regular nights out on the town. Ridiculous cars. Obsessions over the newest tech gadgets. […]

lower internet bill

5 Simple Steps to a Lower Internet Bill

Internet service is basically a necessity in these times, but ever-increasing monthly rates can make it a tough pill bill to swallow. Further complicating things, it seems terrible customer service is an industry standard among service providers. My own experience was frustrating and tedious thanks to my local cable company (we’ll call them…Schlomcast). I was, however, able to negotiate myself a lower internet bill, and it only took me three phone calls and two trips to the store! Yes, internet service providers are often difficult to deal with, but by following the five steps below, you too can successfully negotiate […]

simplified investment staircase

The SimpliFIed Investment Staircase

I’ve talked before about the value and importance of investing, but if you’re like most (myself included at the beginning) knowing how to get started can be intimidated. With that in mind, I’ve created the SimpliFIed Investment Staircase. This is the method that I personally follow and can help get introduced to investing if you’re frustrated trying to figure out where to even begin. Better yet, you don’t even need to have a large sum of money stashed in order to get going! There is plenty of room for personalization, especially towards the top of the stairs, so feel free to […]