Blog Post of the Week! by Financial Samurai
I’m packing for FinCon.
For those people unfamiliar with this uber-event in my community, it’s where we all get together and sacrifice a few bloggers to the great god Google.
OR we learn about how to make our blogs better. You choose which version of the story you like better.
This Week’s Winner
There are only so many pieces of advice out there in the personal finance world:
1) have an emergency fund
2) budget and eliminate debt
3) insure yourself with “just the right amount.”
4) plan for your goals
5) earn and save money
6) become tax efficient so you can save even more money
7) protect the heck out of your estate, so Uncle Lou gets your snowshoes and Cousin Billy gets the beer cap collection.
That’s pretty much it. Seven easy steps. So the trick as a blogger is to wind these into stories that people will remember and use in their everyday lives. That’s the struggle, right?
So in his epic piece: New or Used Car? Why I Never Plan on Buying a Car Again, Sam at Financial Samurai–who often has the quirkiest viewpoint in the room anyway–tells us this week that the secret to holding on to your precious objects is to give them a name.
It’s the same philosophy negotiators tell hostages to use with terrorists: become more valuable by becoming a real person, not just some “thing” that’s a pawn. You’ll never sell your friend to a stranger. You have history together. Forget the hot new item, I want my friend by my side.
In the story Sam named his car Moose. In this spirit, I’ve decided to name my mattress Danica Patrick. My wife doesn’t like it, but she’ll get used to the idea when I tell her that it was Sam’s idea and we’ll save tons of money because we’ll never buy a new mattress again.
Congratulations, Sam. You may print this soon-to-be-esteemed award and post it on your refrigerator.
8 Other Awesome Blogs You Should Be Following But Might Have Missed So I’ll Remind You
Ornella at the Moneylicious blog wins the “big money saver” award of the week, with her story How I Helped a Customer Get ALL of His Bank Fees Refunded. Do you know how many lottery tickets $150 will buy? I’ll bet Ornella’s customer sure does, after he turned his bank fee refund into a BIG return! He might now be banking at the Bank of ChaChing! (I made up the last part of that story. While I have no clue what her customer did with his bank refund, I feel like it’s the duty of this blog to get all the frivolous and obvious uses out in the open. It was the elephant in the room.)
Traveling this holiday weekend? John at My Family Finances asks How Does The Average Family Deal With Increasing Gas Prices? Two words that didn’t make John’s article: NASCAR and doughnuts. You think he could have found a way to include those two crucial points. We like the story anyway, John, despite this obvious flaw.
American Debt Project covers ground we discuss in Monday’s new Two Guys & Your Money (she beat us to it!). First Time Homebuyer Expenses AFTER Closing: One Homebuyer’s Experience covers all the costs people forget about when buying a home: new furniture, paint, lawn expenses, and all the little miscellaneous costs. Her friend didn’t include the cost of the Dogs Playing Pool poster for the living room wall. That must be something ADP is saving for Part II.
Exhausted from all of this AWESOME reading we’re dolling out? Take a break and look at some pretty pictures. JW at All Things Finance shares an infographic about the American Dream…and how we dig ourselves big holes. It’s scary that this pattern is universal enough that we can make an infographic about it. I’m surprised there isn’t an infographic explaining how Kathleen Edwards is the best singer songwriter of all time. Maybe soon….
In our technical category, at My Money Design MMD talks withdrawal rates with Retirement Income Planning with Author David Solin, a topic that doesn’t receive enough attention. Everyone thinks about how to put money into a 401k plan, but getting money out right could be the difference between beef jerky OR beef jerky AND corn nuts in retirement.
Jana at Daily Money Shot hits a triple word score in her post Words With Friends Made Me Smarter About Investing. I’m a decent investor (no Warren Buffett, but I hold my own…). I wish this was the opposite way around. Could someone please write: Investing Made Me a Better Words With Friends Player? Pretty Please?
If you didn’t already know about my man-crush on Dr. Dean from the Millionaire Nurse Blog, I’m gonna lay it on here. Do you know where he was all week? He was out helping support hurricane relief workers. While he was gone, our friend Carrie from Careful Cents guest posted: How to Regain Control of Your Finances.
If you’re thinking you could write this WAY better than me and want to start your own blog (and I wouldn’t disagree!), head over to Jeremy’s Modest Money site for some tips to totally kick my butt at blogging. A good one this week was Promoting Financial Affiliate Programs. His series on how to build your blog has been wildly helpful to many of us out here. Jeremy won’t admit this, but his whole goal: take a picture of himself in a bathtub naked covered in cash. That’s you in the pic, isn’t it Jeremy? Don’t lie. We won’t tell anyone else. Promise.
We’re Very Popular and Modest
Holy Toledo we were all over the place this week.
First of all, Roshawn Watson went WAY overboard when he included this blog among several awesome sites people should read to learn about money. I don’t know if Roshawn knows this, but I mentioned corn nuts in this post! Hurry over to his otherwise-excellent: Why Do We Worry About Money? before he changes his mind and erases my mention.
Dr. Dean was kind enough to me guest post at the Millionaire Nurse Blog. I wrote about all the excuses people come up with to avoid saving (including “I can’t afford it.”)
Dave at Debt Black Hole was kind enough to include my guest post about my “should be frugal if I wasn’t so extreme about it” activity. Read my post to see what awesome frugal thing I go overboard on. I’m sure you can’t wait to click that link to learn more about the super person who is ME… (Could I sound more egotistical? I think not.)
I showed a little leg, so Club Thrifty included us in the V.I.P. Club! What they don’t know is that the VIP treatment is perfect for a writer like me. I dictate all of these posts to a well-paid intern while another feeds me grapes. I giggle a lot. But not as much as Jeremy at Modest Money who’s bathing in cash.
Always enlightening Shilpan at Street Smart Finance linked to our site in his story The Buy and Hold Strategy Can Kill Your Portfolio. As the market stays in a trading range and the long recovery continues, finding tweaks to your strategy should be job #1 and Shilpan’s post is a great place to start.
Thanks to everyone who’s been listening to our 2 Guys & Your Money podcast each week. Our listenership is growing solidly (subscribe to the Diary below to find out how much). We’ve been lucky to have some great guests and cool topics. I have to give a special shout out to our team who puts in a ton of work every week without any compensation besides the thrill of entertaining you. Here’s to PK from DQYDJ.net, Len Penzo, Carrie Smith, Dominique Brown and last (but definitely not least!) Dr. Dean. These people are super fun to work with and bring their A game each week. I also need to say a big thanks to my friend Doug for some brutally honest feedback that’s helped improve the show a ton over the last four episodes, and to Steve Stewart from the MoneyPlan SOS podcast, who’s been a great mentor on show development.
We’re on Stitcher! Not only can you listen to us on iTunes, but if you love podcasts, use Stitcher to catch on on the fly from your smartphone or iPad.
Have a great weekend everyone. I’ll see all you crazy bloggers at FinCon!
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