Paul Simon lamented “all the crap I learned in high school” and I tend to agree with him. I wasn’t a great student, but most of the coursework wasn’t great either. Much of it was too specialized or abstract to have value to most students. A new North Carolina state requirement is putting a personal finance course into their classrooms. I think this is terrific. … Continue reading Financial Literacy In The Classroom
We’re heading on our big trip of the year next month and I’ve been looking into our health insurance coverage. I’ve taken dozens of overseas trips for fun or for work over the years, but I’ve honestly never bothered to understand how I was covered for any medical issues. Recently, a of couple situations came up that caused me to rethink my ‘ignorance is bliss’ … Continue reading Travel Medical Insurance
The Federal Reserve cut their interest rate target yesterday by a quarter point, and the stock market fell about 1%. The cut was expected over the last couple weeks, and the market seemed excited about it, but now that it has happened, it feels like no one is satisfied. Such is the ambiguity that comes with watching what the market does on a daily basis. … Continue reading Fed Rate Cut Ambiguity
Some friends I play softball with in the summer got together for our ‘Winter Meeting’ the other night. We don’t talk too much softball, but enjoy a few beers and catch up on what’s happened in our lives since last August when we played our last game. This year, we started chatting about getting our income taxes pulled together. Some guys had already filed their … Continue reading Taxes – Too Complicated for DIY
We are back from our Winter vacation in the Caribbean and that means it’s time for us to preparing for tax time. We promised our accountant that we would connect with her as soon as we got back from our trip as there are so many changes to the tax code that she wanted to get paperwork from us as soon as we could. The … Continue reading Changing Tax Deductions
With the New Year underway, I thought it would be a good time to give an update on our (very) small Bitcoin investment that I have written about several times. Reading the headlines, you would assume that the bottom has fallen out of the cryptocurrency market. Like many things, that is a matter of perspective. Each morning, I get a notification on my iPhone signaling … Continue reading Bitcoin – Has It Dissolved Yet?
If you follow personal finance news at all, you may have recently seen Suze Orman making headlines by throwing up all over the FIRE (financially independent & retired early) movement. When it comes to FIRE, she says she “Hates it. Hates it. Hates it.” and it may be the “dumbest personal finance decision” people can make. I’ve written before about Orman’s highly suspect financial expertise and … Continue reading Really BAD Financial Advice
Someone recently started a thread on Reddit asking “What is your biggest financial mistake/regret?” I posted a couple articles on our biggest mistakes in the past and so I perused the Reddit thread to see if our misery had some company. Here were the responses – in order of how often people mentioned them: Spent too much on college/an impractical major (6) I was surprised … Continue reading Biggest Financial Regrets – Have Any?
Mortgage rates are in the news again as the average rate on a 30 year fixed mortgage reached 4.6% this week. It was the highest the rate has reached in the last 7 years – up 0.7 percentage points from where they were at last year. Fifteen year rates are also up – reaching 4.15%. These rates are still incredibly low relative to what they … Continue reading Paying Off Your Mortgage As Rates Rise
(Updated 12/31/17 for final Tax Reform provisions) Tax Reform has been all over the news in the last week and when the Senate passed their bill on Friday night, I was excited at the prospect of seeing a solid windfall based on what the politicians were saying about it. The Republicans promised big savings for everyone across the board – they were even concerned it … Continue reading GOP Tax Reform – Not So Big Savings in MN