Welcome to this week’s Carnival of Personal Finance (basic introduction, schedule) and welcome to Consumerism Commentary to any new readers! This is the eighth installment of the Carnival. In this issue:
Designer Pets. Free Money Finance discovers the latest craze for dog owners, crossing poodles with other breeds, giving us wonderful breednames like schnoodles and cockapoos. Beware! It’ll cost you. FMF suggests limiting the number of mouths belonging to feedable beings in your household in order to save money. Yelling at your hyperactive kid to “shut his pie-hole” doesn’t count.
Recover Improvement Costs. Jim from Blueprint for Financial Prosperity has discovered a great resource for determining the return on investment for home renovations. Pop quiz: what increases your home’s value more, finishing a basement or adding a second full bathroom? Check out Best Value Home Renovations to find the answer.
There’s More to Index Funds. The Real Returns discovers hidden treasures — small businesses — in large cap stocks, negating one reason some do not invest in index funds: the thought that a few large caps stocks are allocated significant amount of money. That’s something to think about if worried that 3.4% of the S&P 500 index fund is in General Electric.
Brain-Damaged Investing. Jon, the author of Smart Money Daily explores the pitfalls of investing with your emotions. Holding onto a bad stock because you’re concerned you’ll miss a big increase if you sell? Then his article is for you.
Generation Broke. Is debt correlated to youth? K explores the facts in her personal finance progress report. What percent of income does the average 25-to-34-year-old spend on debt payments? I would give you a clue, but you’d be better off reading about generation broke.
Now or Later? Can a dollar now be more worthwhile than that money’s investment returns later? Madame X from My Open Wallet explores her Rule #7: The Now or Later Rule. If you can buy or do something now while the chance of being able to later are low, maybe it’s better to enjoy it while you can.
Ameritrade vs. Scottrade. Smarty at Growing Money was out of town recently. When he was out of town, he wanted to stay updated with his investments, but he was only able to get in touch with one of his brokers. Here he talks about the importance of customer service at brokerage firms.
Qualify For a Home. What can you do to qualify for a house or mortgage? Dan Melson shares comprehensive tips and links to resources on his blog, Searchlight Crusade.
The Personal Finance Bloggers Convention. Hazzard writes Everybody Loves Your Money. He has an idea he’d like to see come to fruition: a convention for pf-bloggers. Think frugal: “We’d all be flying in at 2:00am because the cheapest ticket had us leaving our home town at midnight.”
They All Rolled Over And One Fell Out. Jonathan from MyMoneyBlog explores his options for rolling over his Fidelity-managed 401(k) in a multipart series. Here is Part One, in which he weighs the pros and cons of (pun warning!) being faithful to Fidelity.
We Take You To England. Bruce Wayne, when he’s not fighting crime in Gotham, writes on the website Finance Choices, a blog from the United Kingdom with information mainly on mortgages and insurance. Bruce has provided some commentary on the Bank of England’s decision to cut interest rates to 4.5% from 4.75%.
Thrift Savings Plan Tool. Ironman at Political Calculations has a tool for projecting the future value of your investment portfolio. Tailored for the U.S. government’s Thrift Savings Plan, the tool can be used to forecast the future value of up to five investments.
Sales Tax Holiday? Many states have a “sales tax holiday” where tax is waived on certain items for the “back-to-school” season mentioned above. Does this really save money? Nickel, from Five Cent Nickel, points out an article that shows any perceived benefits are not very meaningful. Read the article to find out why.
The Psychology Of Debt. Wealthy Web points out that debt is more than just dollar and cents; there’s a psychological aspect to recovering from the debt that is important to consider.
Tracking Your FICO Score. Cap, the author of StopBuyingCrap, has been tracking his FICO score over the past year. In this post, he shares his data and has possible explanations for movement in the score.
Before And After Jackpot. Frank from Hello, Dollar! explores the lottery in That’s a Lotto Bull. What are the odds of winning the lottery? Is the Lotto really the only chance for some people to become wealthy?
Beware of Horrible Advice. mightybargainhunter.com takes a look at the book, Missed Fortune 101, and analyzes the author’s investment advice in two parts. He finds the book to be somewhat lacking; read the first part of the article to find out why you may want to avoid this book.
When You Gamble, Who Wins? According to Joe from the Tax Updates Blog, the house always wins. The “house” in this case is an entity other than the casino. Read the story of Jimmie Clemons to find out who the real winner is, and it’s not Jimmie Clemons.
College Funding Math. If you are concerned with being able to afford college for your children, you will be interested in JLP’s post on All Things Financial which runs the reader through a calculation of how much higher education will cost, taking inflation into account.
How Not To Build An Online Business. Do you want to make more money (with an online business)? Sure, we all do. Steve Pavlina informs his readers how to do the opposite. His three tips show how successful for-profit-bloggers separate themselves from those not successful.
24 articles submitted, and that’s it for this week’s installment of the Carnival of Personal Finance. We’ll return next Moday at Blueprint for Financial Prosperity.
Updated January 2, 2018 and originally published August 8, 2005.