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Trent Hamm

Questions About 401(k) Validity, Vacuum Cleaners, Exercise, Identity Theft, and More!

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to summaries of five or fewer words. Click on the number to jump straight down to the question.1. 401(k) is a scam?2. Obsession, then nothing3. DON’T buy the cheapest?4. Getting mortgage after identity theft5. Fighting against promotion6. Buying a good vacuum7. Actual […]

On “Living For Today” or “Living Each Day Like It’s Your Last”

For a long time, I found myself frustrated by the sentiment of “living for today” or “living each day like it was your last.” If today was my last day on earth, I’d eat my favorite meals and spend pure leisure time with the core people that I love the most. If today was the […]

Finding Your Tribe Without Emptying Your Wallet

One of the most powerful books I’ve ever read was Robert Putnam’s Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community. The book’s focus is on how, in the last fifty years, people in America have become increasingly disconnected from one another and how many social structures, from bowling leagues and bridge clubs to the […]

Questions About 401(k) Options, Swappa, Net Worth, Water Bottles, Breakfast, and More!

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to summaries of five or fewer words. Click on the number to jump straight down to the question.1. No Target Retirement in 401(k)?2. Value of net worth?3. Swappa for used cell phones?4. Nervous retirees scared to spend5. Thoughts on Linux?6. Some thoughts […]

Frugality, Philosophy, and Time Management

In Monday’s reader mailbag, Eric asked a great question: I find it interesting that you write about things like time management and philosophy on a personal finance site. The connection seems thin at best to me. I’d love to see a post talking about it. My first line in response was “I don’t think there’s […]

Inspiration from Arnold Toynbee, Bagel Sandwiches, Masego, and More!

Once a month (or so), I share a dozen things that have inspired me to greater personal, professional, and financial success in my life. I hope they bring similar success to your life. 1. Viktor Frankl on living as though this is your second chance “Live as though you’re living a second time and as […]

The Impact of Financial Lock-In

As I’ve discussed many times before, the low point for Sarah and I (in terms of our finances) came on a beautiful spring day when our oldest child was still an infant, when we realized that we didn’t have enough money in our checking account to pay our bills and we wouldn’t receive a paycheck […]

Being Frugal with Food When You Don’t Have the Space to Cook

Jennifer writes in: I live in a single room efficiency apartment. The entirety of things that I have available for cooking are a sink, a table, a microwave, and a mini fridge. I simply don’t have the space or capacity to do dishes or prepare meals or anything like that. I can’t even really eat […]

Being Frugal with Food When You Don’t Have the Space to Cook

Jennifer writes in: I live in a single room efficiency apartment. The entirety of things that I have available for cooking are a sink, a table, a microwave, and a mini fridge. I simply don’t have the space or capacity to do dishes or prepare meals or anything like that. I can’t even really eat […]

The Path to Financial Independence in Detail

Gary writes in: What exactly do you mean when you talk about financial independence? Can you break it down a little? In simplest terms, when I talk about financial independence, I’m referring to a situation in which your living expenses are fully covered by your investments for the rest of your life. In other words, […]