As featured in The Wall Street Journal, Money Magazine, and more!

June 2006

Eat Steak With Warren Buffett

by Luke Landes

Warren Buffett will be once again auctioning off the pleasure of dining with him. Last year, he raised $351,100. This year, he’ll be in New York at Smith & Wollensky. The auction will take place with the help of eBay and will begin on June 22, so get your checkbooks ready.

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Deceptive Credit Card Offers, Part 1: Two-Cycle Billing

by Luke Landes

Although it’s common to recieve mailing from credit card companies offering credit cards with attractive terms, like 0 percent APR balance transfer offers or offers on small business credit cards they won’t tell you all the terms of the agreement until you actually apply for the card. This is often the case regardless of your “pre-approved” ... Continue reading this article…

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Google Spreadsheets, a New Web App

by Luke Landes

Today, Google will launch Google Spreadsheets, a web application within the Google Labs “playground.” This might be a great medium to share financial calculators and the data I include on my net worh and income statements. ZDNet says the service will be able to import Microsoft Excel spreadsheets. Excel allows the user to create intense ... Continue reading this article…

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Tips for Hosting Garage Sales (Tag Sales, Yard Sales, etc.)

by Luke Landes

Ron Hall has a article on Gather.com which presents ten tips for hosting a successful garage sale. I won’t reprint all the tips as the article is short enough that readers can visit it directly. Ron focuses on visibility/advertising, parking, pricing, and timing. There are many additional pointers provided by readers in the comments below ... Continue reading this article…

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Living Amenities for the Rich

by Luke Landes

I don’t get to visit homes valued at $1,000,000 (or $2,000,000 in California) very often if at all. If I were to visit these homes, I would see designed kitchens, wine cellars, entertainment rooms, wet bars, and theater seating. I’m far from being able to afford the amenities often considered a necessity such as security ... Continue reading this article…

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New Money Blogger Podcast

by Luke Landes

Over the past few weeks, I’ve had some posts prepared ahead of time to keep content fresh during the day. This week, I’m winging it. Instead, here’s something you can do. If you have a few minutes, listen to thatedeguy’s podcast interview.

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Looking for Apartments, Update 4

by Luke Landes

Last time, I mentioned my girlfriend and I had our eyes set on The River Club in Edgewater, NJ. We saw that apartment this weekend, and this is what we learned.

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The Carnival of Personal Finance is Up!

by Luke Landes

The latest Carnival of Personal Finance has been posted on Mapgirl’s Fiscal Challenge. I liked Turn Your Hobby Into a Career and Jeffrey Strain’s article, Dave Ramsey is God, in which he laments the deification of that particular guru and gurus in general. If you’re still in a Carnival mood, check out the latest Carnival ... Continue reading this article…

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Carnival of Investing #25

by Luke Landes

Welcome to Consumerism Commentary and the 25th edition of the Carnival of Investing! For any visitors new to Consumerism Commentary, feel free to learn more about me and this website or peruse my investing articles. Thanks to Jonathan from MyMoneyBlog who has kept the Carnival of Investing going. Here is what we’ve had this week:

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Personal Income Statement, May 2006 (Net Income: $2,291)

by Luke Landes

Despite my net worth showing a decrease in May, I spent substantially less than my income. That doesn’t mean things are perfect. Take a look at the (extended) numbers.

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Personal Balance Sheet, May 2006 ($49,510, -0.56%)

by Luke Landes

My net worth as of May 31, 2006 is $49,510. I did pass $50,000 for some time this month, but despite my income being significantly higher than my expenses, I ended the month a little behind April. Continue for the numbers.

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Emigrant Direct Gets a New Website

by Luke Landes

One of the biggest complaints with Emigrant Direct is their website, which is less than innovative when compared to others, like ING Direct. Today I received communication (well, a letter) with some good news: Our new website and “state of the art” new security system will be activated in June. The enhanced site reflects comments ... Continue reading this article…

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Vonage May Have Violated The Law With IPO

by Luke Landes

According to this report, Vonage (VG) may have violated the law by not including a link to their prospectus in the email sent to customers offering the IPO. If so, this could be seen as an “illegal offer.” If this is found to be the case, the company would have to buy back customers’ stock ... Continue reading this article…

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Weekly Blog Round-Up

by Luke Landes

Here’s a look at what has been written on the MoneyBlogNetwork and beyond this week. Mighty Bargain Hunter compares real assets like gold against MSFT. Free Money Finance looks at splitting up money as a married couple. JLP from AllFinancialMatters adds the life insurance needs calculator to his growing list of financial calculators. Five Cent ... Continue reading this article…

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Was Your Credit Card Number Stolen in February?

by Luke Landes

If you have ever been a customer of Hotels.com, this might affect you. Credit card numbers and names of 243,000 of the company’s customers were on a laptop computer stolen from an Ernst & Young employee in February. They only began notifying customers last week as until recently, the companies didn’t know what was contained ... Continue reading this article…

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After Graduation: Choices, Plans and Risks, Part 4

by Luke Landes

David Bach, the author of The Automatic Millionaire and The Automatic Millionaire Homeowner (the latter of which I reviewed earlier this year), also writes a column on Yahoo Finance. Recently he presented five tips for college graduates just beginning their path to financial security. This follows Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3. Today’s tip ... Continue reading this article…

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Hosting the Investing Carnival

by Luke Landes

I’ll be hosting the Carnival of Investing on Monday, so if you’re a blogger who’d like to participate, please get your submissions to me as soon as possible.

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Student Loan Consolidation: The Countdown Begins

by Luke Landes

As I mentioned last week, it’s time to consolidate your student loans. The U.S. News & World Report has a timely article about conslidation as a way of cutting back your costs. Student loans are basically a way of life for many college graduates. Lately, the interest rates have been so low it’s practically free ... Continue reading this article…

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Sorry For The Downtime

by Luke Landes

If you tried to access Consumerism Commentary today but couldn’t get through, I apologize. This site — and many of my websites sites hosted at DreamHost — are having server problems. Part of the problem is being bombarded with spam comments, in some cases a thousand per hour. While they don’t get published, they get ... Continue reading this article…

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After Graduation: Choices, Plans and Risks, Part 3

by Luke Landes

David Bach, the author of The Automatic Millionaire and The Automatic Millionaire Homeowner (the latter of which I reviewed earlier this year), also writes a column on Yahoo Finance. Recently he presented five tips for college graduates just beginning their path to financial security. This follows Part 1 and Part 2. Here is the fourth ... Continue reading this article…

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