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Podcast 125: Underwater Mortgages

by Luke Landes

Today on the Consumerism Commentary Podcast Tom Dziubek speaks with Gerri Detweiler, personal finance expert at Credit.com, about her series of articles dealing with underwater mortgages. Gerri goes into detail about each of the six options including home loan refinances & modifications, doing a short sale and declaring bankruptcy. Consumerism Commentary Podcast #125 Underwater Mortgages: ... Continue reading this article…

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Set Up Beneficiaries for All Your Accounts

by Luke Landes

While anyone moves towards financial independence, there is a time to think about what would happen to one’s financial accounts if one were to most unfortunately pass away. It’s a morbid thought, no doubt, and it’s easily avoidable in a world where talking about death is difficult. I don’t like to contemplate my own mortality, ... Continue reading this article…

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Involving Children in Household Money Management

by Luke Landes

At the right age, involving children in the household financial planning process can be a good way to teach responsible money management. Children internalize best practices when they not only receive meaningful instruction, but have visible, positive role models as parents. If parents want to impart a lesson of “buy only what you can afford,” ... Continue reading this article…

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Earn More Money: How to Be a Secret Shopper

by Luke Landes
Secret Shopping, Shopping Bags

For all of the eight years of Consumerism Commentary’s existence, I’ve written about big ways to earn more income, like changing a career path, learning how to negotiate, or building your own business, much more than I’ve written about options that might seem more available to most people. I’ve generally shied away from the smaller ... Continue reading this article…

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Personal Balance Sheet, August 2011 ($368,817, -2.6%)

by Luke Landes

Almost every month since July 2003, I’ve been reporting my month-end financial reports on Consumerism Commentary. This reporting started as a way to hold myself accountable as I attempted to improve my finances through earning more and spending thoughtfully while saving and investing for my future. Somewhere along the way, the website became not only ... Continue reading this article…

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Financial Tips for Students Entering College

by Luke Landes

Seventeen years ago I was nervous about what was about to transpire. At this time, although I had been away from home for extended periods of time, I was about to leave for college. Honestly, I thought I might not have been able to handle the responsibilities and the new social environment. Rather than living ... Continue reading this article…

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Money Magazine’s Best Banks 2011

by Luke Landes

In early October, I will announce the winners of the Second Annual Plutus Awards, which will include the best bank, best credit card, best brokerage, and a number of other categories. Later today, the Plutus Awards website will list the finalists. Money Magazine has already completed its survey and announced the publication’s editor’s picks for ... Continue reading this article…

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Best Buy Reward Zone Credit Card Review

by Luke Landes

Several times, I’ve done what is considered unthinkable by most personal finance experts: I signed up for store credit cards at the point of sale. I have a Macy’s card, which I signed up for a discount on clothing I was planning to buy — clothing that is probably overpriced in the first place. But ... Continue reading this article…

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