Don’t Wait Until the End of the Month To Save

“If you would be wealthy, think of saving as well as getting.”
– Ben Franklin

My wife and I have typically been paid twice a month. For a long time, we took the approach of putting whatever was left over at the end of the month into saving and investing. We did pay extra towards my student loan, which helped out significantly, but, at the end of the month, surprisingly enough, the amount that we’d sock away was much less than we anticipated.

Actually, when we thought about it and looked at our behavior, it was not a surprise at … Read the article

Personal Finance FAQ Series: What is a Roth IRA?

Do you know the difference between a Roth IRA and a traditional IRA? If not, then this episode of the Hull Financial Planning frequently asked questions series will help you understand what a Roth IRA is and when it might be appropriate for you.

What is a Roth IRA?

What questions would you like to see me answer? Leave me a comment and let me know!

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Personal Finance FAQ Series: Does It Cost Anything to Make a Budget?

It’s easy to think that you can go out, buy some software, a system, and POOF, a budget will magically appear for you. The reality is that doing a budget should be a relatively straightforward, quick, simple, and free process.

Let’s dig deeper into why this is so.

Does It Cost Anything to Make a Budget?

What questions would you like to see me answer? Leave me a comment and let me know!

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Get Off Your Hedonic Treadmill

“Do not bite at the bait of pleasure till you know there is no hook beneath it.”
–Thomas Jefferson

“Status symbols are medals you buy yourself.”
–Bernhard Wicki

When you’re not paying attention, expenses act like a gas; they expand to meet (or exceed) their container, in this case, your income. Got a pay raise? That means you can afford a higher car payment, right?

Yet, a year later, are you enjoying the car that much more than the previous one? Probably not, and now you have a higher payment to boost. Like an addict chasing the next high, you … Read the article

Six Reasons Not to Keep Up With the Joneses

“Too many people spend money they haven’t earned, to buy things they don’t want, to impress people they don’t like.”
–Will Smith

When I was in my mid-20s, I bought a brand new BMW convertible. I lived in Germany, and I’d seen several other people buy one. The car salesman told me that the car was a custom order from someone in Munich who then decided, last minute, to back out of the purchase, which was why the car was several thousand dollars less expensive than other new BMW convertibles. I was sold.

There was one slight problem. I didn’t … Read the article