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After the golden rule of personal finance follow these ones

Let’s be blunt, you can likely sum up personal finance into a few principles: Pay yourself first. Spend less than you make.  You can add in “invest the difference” if you really want to. The golden rule of personal finance is easy to understand but actually hard to implement consistently over many years for many reasons.  Life throws some curves at you, things change and your financial plan needs to change with it. In general though if you can get a handle on investing that difference I mentioned above then you might be questioning how you ...

Questions Investors Simply Don’t Ask Themselves

I was inspired by this article from Michael James on Money recently that answered a bunch of questions investors simply don’t ask themselves, listed on Ben Carlson’s site A Wealth of Common Sense.  Given Michael is a successful index investor and my investing approach is different from his I thought I’d take a stab at answering Ben’s questions and see what’s different and by how much.  Ben’s questions are in bold font, my answers follow.  Please hang with this post, it’s longer than most. What if I’m wrong? I’m quite confident ...
Financial Attitude

My personal finance a-ha moments

I spend a lot of time using My Own Advisor to share what’s working with our financial plan and how incremental money management changes are moving us towards financial independence.  I’ve also shared some money management mistakes on this site.  I do this because I believe most people learn more from their failures than their successes…at least I do.  Writing about success and failure can be helpful because money affects our lives in so many different ways:  how we save, how we invest, what we shop for, where we spend our money, what products ...

8 things I’ve discovered about money

In recent discussions with some folks and to play off Preet Banerjee’s blog name (where does all our money go) I was reflecting on some things I’ve discovered about spending and money – here they are. Owning a house is expensive Heat, hydro, maintenance and property taxes are just a few housing costs.  The bigger the house, the more money it costs to own it.  Let’s not forget the mortgage either.  I figure the sooner my wife and I are debt-free the better. Paying yourself first is crucial to retirement planning Our retirement plan ...
Financial Stuff

Four Fat Financial Failures

Mistakes are part of life, might as well accept that.  I’m learning to accept that concept more as I get older.  When it comes to personal finance in particular hopefully our money management mishaps are smaller and infrequent over time.  For today’s post, here are four fat financial failures and some personal commentary on them that have the potential to derail any retirement plan. Overspending The simple fact is, unless you can control your spending you won’t have anything left over to save or invest.  So, when it comes to a healthy ...

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