Subscriber Swap Saturday: No Debt Plan

December 6, 2008 by  
Filed under Blog

Today Mr. ToughMoneyLove wants to introduce my readers to another personal finance blog that I like to read, No Debt Plan.

No Debt Plan is about getting and staying out of debt with a plan.  Kevin, the author, is passionate about budgeting, saving for the future, and using goals to reach financial freedom.  You can subscribe to his blog by RSS or email.

This is the second Subscriber Swap Saturday that Kevin has run.  The basic idea is to get the subscribers of one blog to subscribe to the other blog for at least a week, just to try it out.  After a week if you don’t find that blogger’s content enticing, drop it.  The hope is that over time you will find several writers that you weren’t familiar with that provide meaningful content to you.  (You can read more about Subscriber Swap Saturday at his blog.) 

I had a chance to interview Kevin to briefly talk about himself and his blog:

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Media-Types Struggle to Get on the Same Economic Page

December 1, 2008 by  
Filed under Economics, Spending

I was amused and intrigued by Sunday’s print edition of our local newspaper.  The business section featured four articles under the following headlines:

“Foreclosure Wave Hits Malls”

“Big Players Scale Back Charitable Donations”

“Global Crisis Jolts Tourism in Caribbean”

“Companies Whack Pay Raises, Bonuses”

Definitely a doom and gloom article collection wouldn’t you say?   This selection came from a newspaper with a definite liberal editorial staff.  (By they way, when did organized crime slang like “whack” become a mainstream media headline verb?) Read more


Spenders Jumping on the “Shopping is Patriotic” Bandwagon

November 29, 2008 by  
Filed under Economics

Black Friday always makes for an interesting study in consumer behavior.  In addition to the shocking news about the Walmart tragedy, commentary from the shoppers themselves is instructive.

Mr. ToughMoneyLove was listening to NPR today when a field reporter caught up with a Black Friday shopper waiting for a Best Buy to open at 4:00 AM. This particular shopper had been in line since 5:00 PM they before.  Explaining herself, she said that “she didn’t have much happening on Thanksgiving.”  I’m guessing that whatever she had going on, it involved closely studying the Black Friday sales fliers. Read more


Responsible Credit Score Strategies for Young Adults

August 17, 2008 by  
Filed under Debt and Credit, Spending

You Can Improve Your Credit Score and Build Wealth

Yes – you read that title correctly.   Mr. ToughMoneyLove is going to discuss credit score strategies.  Why?  As I continue my tough love campaign against credit score obsession, I have to acknowledge that it is unlikely that readers will choose my path of being completely oblivious to my credit score. Read more


My Tough Love Campaign Against Credit Score Obsession (Part 2)

A Little History about the Credit Score

Welcome to Part 2 of my series on credit score obsession and addiction.  In Part 1 of this series, I told the story of my son being denied the right to open a savings account at an online bank because he had no credit history.  This experience reinforced my belief that the credit industry (with our unwitting cooperation) has unfairly elevated the status of credit scores in our economy.  This has led to pervasive abuse of credit scores by not just creditors but by financial service providers of all kinds, by landlords, and even by prospective employers.  Unfortunately, too many consumers have allowed this trend to push them into engaging in money behaviors and adopting bad money habits for the sole purpose of maximizing their credit score. Read more


Making Changes in that Which We Still Control: Spending

August 9, 2008 by  
Filed under Budgeting, Spending

One of my favorite financial writers – Scott Burns – spoke in his column this week about the power of “attentive spending.”  He pointed out the factors that most of us cannot control in our financial lives because of the precarious and volatile state of today’s economy.  These include stock market losses, low interest rates on savings accounts and CD’s, falling home values, rising oil prices, inflation, and uncertain job security.  This leaves a lot of folks feeling helpless and hopeless. Mr. ToughMoneyLove is sympathetic. Read more


How to Respond if a Family Member Asks for a Loan (Part 1)

August 5, 2008 by  
Filed under Loans and Borrowing

This is part 1 of a discussion of my views on how you should respond to a request by a family member for a loan. In today’s economy with so many people living paycheck to paycheck (and still falling behind), it is not unusual to be asked by a friend or family member for a loan. Read more


Guilt May Be the Antidote for Debt Addiction

On the various personal finance message boards that I read regularly, it is easy to find posters who debate the wisdom of purchases of non-essential goods and services by use of credit cards and other consumer debt.  The defenders of such purchases are often debt or credit addicts, carrying large balances on multiple credit accounts.  Equally often, these debt addicts argue that their purchases are justified because they work hard and therefore “deserve” or are “entitled to” things that bring them pleasure, even if they do not have the money to pay for them. Read more


What is “Tough Money Love” in Personal Finance?

July 21, 2008 by  
Filed under Money and Behavior

There are hundreds if not thousands of websites covering personal finance issues.  Most are hosted by vendors trying to sell you something.  Others dish out conventional advice that can be found in any personal finance book or regurgitated by financial planners.  Still others offer a steady stream of fluffy  affirmations, feel good pep talks, and cheerleading for folks with serious and chronic money/behavior problems.  (If you need affirmations for bad money behavior, I recommend that you visit the Women in Red Forum on MSN Money or watch the Oprah show.)
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