8 Ways to Stretch Your Vacation Dollar

There are plenty of well-known ways to save money on your vacation, such as booking flights and hotels online, cashing in credit card rewards, or eating the free breakfast in your motel. But there are also some less obvious ways to save money on your family vacay… many of which you might not have considered. […]

Five Primary Reasons Why Your Credit Card Application Was Declined

I try to take advantage of promotional credit card offers as much as possible. When big bonuses come around, I apply. When great cash back reward programs are offered, I’m immediately figuring out how much money I can save by using a new card instead of an old one. But sometimes all these new credit cards […]

How to Ask for a Promotion (and Get It)

If you want to build a meaningful and lucrative career, you’re going to have to learn how to feel confident talking to your boss about your ambitions and asking for the support you need to progress. No matter how necessary, though, that conversation can make even the most outgoing of us feel a little weak […]

The Hidden Savings In a Rent Payment

The scene was a sidewalk café on Chicago’s northwest side, one summery evening around 2006. I’d been joined for dinner by a couple of friends, Grant and Kate, and between bites of chicken Vesuvio — or was it a chopped salad? — was enjoying the witty, intelligent repartee of my two companions. There was a lull in the conversation, […]

How to Budget Without Regular Paychecks

Successful budgeting tends to depend on two things: careful planning and a steady income. The first, anyone can do. The second may not be so simple. If you’re self-employed, you might be asking yourself, “But I don’t have a regular paycheck coming in — can I even set up a budget? Should I bother?” You can. […]

Should You Spend Less or Make More?

The most sound financial advice you’ll ever read is also the most basic: Spend less than you make. Sure, a successful financial life is a bit more complicated than that. After all, you have to decide just how to make that extra money work for you. But it all starts with this basic principle. If […]

How Automation Has Helped Me Reduce Debt and Save

Readers often e-mail me for tips on how to keep their finances manageable. There are so many options out there that it can be overwhelming. I was speaking with my mom about this some time ago, and she felt the same way. My mom has been responsible with her money over the years, but she […]

Unpaid Internships: A Graduate’s Dream… or a Nightmare?

It’s the ultimate catch-22: in order to get a job after graduation, you’ll need experience. In order to get experience? Well, you need a job. The solution for many students is to look for intern experience, which can be made to fit in around a demanding college schedule. This might mean working through summer or […]

How to Remove a Cosigner from a Student Loan

Adding a cosigner to a student loan has become common practice. After all, very few students can qualify for a loan based on their own income and credit profile. A cosigner is usually needed in order to get the loan approved, particularly with private student loans. But given that student loan repayments can run as […]

Extra Cash? How to Decide Whether to Pay Off Debt or Invest

If you have extra cash or come into a sudden windfall, is it smarter to pay off your debts or invest the money? A woman came into my office the other day wondering this exact thing. Well, she didn’t ask the actual question… I did. She had a mound of credit card debt, clicking away […]