Your Money and Attention to Detail

February 4, 2009 by  
Filed under Money and Behavior, Taxes

At last count, two Obama appointees have withdrawn because of tax problems, the latest being Tom “I need a limo and driver” Daschle.  A third tax miscreant is now Secretary of the Treasury.

How does it feel to know more about our tax laws than the Secretary of the Treasury – you know, the guy who is in charge of the Internal Revenue Service?

It does not give me a good feeling at all, but not for the reasons that you might think.

Let’s assume that these appointees are not tax cheats and that, according to their defenders, are persons of the “highest integrity.”  I’m still not satisfied. Read more


Hard Truth and Money Fatigue?

January 23, 2009 by  
Filed under Blog, Financial Planning

Periodically I have to remind myself that speaking or hearing “hard truth” about the world of personal finance can wear on you.  Sometimes a reader does it for me by unsubscribing to my blog.  (I receive a notice when an email subscription is cancelled.)  I guess you could say that is the “hard truth” about always trying to speak the hard truth.

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Hope Can Be Bad for Your Financial Health

January 22, 2009 by  
Filed under Money and Behavior

Is our new President making you hopeful for a better financial future?  Good for you.  But I recommend that you not make any financial decisions until that hope subsides.

I have a small sticker on my office door that welcomes visitors with the phrase “I found the cure for hope.”  It’s one of those cute sayings that’s supposed to be funny and painfully true at the same time. Read more


Life’s Little Money Mysteries

January 21, 2009 by  
Filed under Economics, Money and Behavior

Periodically I encounter a situation in my money and personal finance life that causes me to scratch my head and rhetorically ask how that can be.  I guess you can call them life’s little money mysteries.  I decided to start a list of them, beginning with one that we all have heard often: Read more


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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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


Beware the Cash-Out Re-Fi

November 28, 2008 by  
Filed under Loans and Borrowing

This has been a good news week for homeowners looking to re-finance their mortgage loan into a lower rate.  Mortgage interest rates fell sharply this week following more rescue actions by the government.  The average interest rate for a fixed 30-year mortgage loan dropped to under 6%, a seven week low.   Mortgage loan re-financing activity has already picked up.   Unfortunately, re-financing a mortgage loan also creates a substantial risk that the borrower will end up with a larger loan balance.  Read more


Giving Thanks that our Government Has Not Yet Ruined My Financial Life

November 26, 2008 by  
Filed under Money and Behavior

If you have read my blog for any length of time, you know that I lack confidence in the ability of the federal government to competently manage our economy.  Both Congress and the Executive Branch are now painfully reminding us why economics is known as the “dismal science.”  

Nevertheless, on this Thanksgiving Eve, Mrs. ToughMoneyLove and I are thankful for many things in our lives, including the realization that our government has not yet succeeded in beating us into submission.   We have three wonderful sons, two gainfully employed in secure jobs and the third doing well in college.  They continue to live debt-free lives.  Read more


Meet Your New Friends …. Same as Your Old Friends

November 5, 2008 by  
Filed under Economics

Mr. ToughMoneyLove has voted in elections since 1968.  In 1971 The Who (remember them?) released my favorite of their songs, “Won’t Get Fooled Again.”  I think of that song each election night, particularly the last lines: Read more


Want to See Money Waste? Attend an NFL Game.

October 28, 2008 by  
Filed under Money and Behavior, Spending

Mr. ToughMoneyLove went to the Titans vs. Colts game last night.  I enjoyed it immensely, as my family members have been fans since the team moved to Tennessee.  Even though I have been to many games, I still come away in wonderment at the money folks spend at the stadium.  Some (including me) would call many of those expenditures pure money waste.  Read more


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