Category Archives: Money

My Two Cents: Weaning Myself Off ATMs

Do you ever feel like you spend an inordinate amount of time standing in front of an ATM? I used to feel the exact same way. I’d take out cash in small increments, spend it on Lord knows what, run out, and then go back for more without thinking. I won’t lie—there were nights, especially when alcohol was involved, where I’d sometimes go for cash twice. Then I’d look at my statement online, and notice that $40 plus $40 plus $80 plus $40 kind of adds up to a lot. Very quickly, my paycheck began dwindling much faster than it should have been. Then I had a random conversation with my parents where they were telling me about The Good Old Days, when once the bank closed, if you didn’t have money—too bad, you just had to figure it out. You didn’t have constant access to your money. And what I think is a brilliant idea was born. What if I went to the ATM once—only once—a week and pretended at all other times that cash was not a four-digit pin code away. Keep reading »

Money 101: How To Reduce Your Monthly Bills

I once saw an “Oprah” episode with a guy so hell-bent on reducing his monthly grocery bills that he had a practice of purchasing doubly-ply toilet paper, unrolling it and then re-rolling it into two separate rolls, thus turning 12 rolls into 24. Swear to God. Enter multiple scatological puns here. (What a cheap-ass! That’s a serious tight wad!)

Sure, attempting to slash your monthly bills is a good move — especially these days, when money ain’t exactly growing on trees. But doing so by re-rolling toilet paper? That’s only for serious whack jobs. In her book 99 Things to Save Money in Your Household Budget, Mary Hance, author of the Nashville Tennessean’s “Ms. Cheap” column, offers some real-life (as opposed to real lame) ideas on how to free up a little extra room in your budget. I found many of them really legit, not to mention simple. Some of my personal faves, after the jump! Keep reading »

Cash & Coupling: Honey, I’m Home — And I Lost My Job!

Your stud may be stunning, but there’s nothing pretty about being in a relationship with someone who’s been laid off. While your heart may break for Mr. Unemployed, his perpetual presence on your sofa can get ugly – fast. When your partner gets downsized, how do you prevent a downsizing effect on your relationship? We consulted a dating expert for tips on navigating the turbulent waters of a layoff without crashing your (relation)ship on the rocks. Keep reading »

Money 101: How To Downsize Your Expenditures

I’m 100 percent guilty of spending without really thinking. Downsizing my expenditures really isn’t something I ponder, even though I know I should (and seriously, if I had a dollar for every time my husband told me I needed to ponder it, I likely wouldn’t need to ponder it at all). I’ve heard, though, that rehabbing my inner Suzie Spendthrift is as simple as taking a different approach to how I think about spending, which, for an otherwise savvy, self-aware chick like me, should result in smarter spending practices. The goal for all of us who spend with reckless abandon: make like the late, great Michael Jackson and take a good, hard look at the (Wo)Man in the Mirror, asking yourself how you can change your spending ways. After the jump, some tips to get started. Keep reading »

Therapy For Your Pocketbook Episode 2: “Stop Buying ‘Things’”


Susie is young, single, has a great job AND an addiction to Marc Jacobs totes. It’s not Tom Sizemore bad, but it’s bad. Although she’s bringing home the bacon, she’s frying it before her paycheck even clears. Finance Expert Manisha Thakor offers some tips to turn off her spending spigot.

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My Two Cents: I Used To Be A Financial Idiot

As soon as I was pushed out of the college womb into the harsh light of day, I discovered I had a really big problem: I was a complete financial idiot. How did I miss the memo on how to support myself as an adult? I was raised in a middle-class family where both of my parents worked. I never was denied anything I needed, yet I wasn’t spoiled. I worked as a teenager, but mostly used my money to buy clothes and CDs. I attended a prestigious private university in New York City on a partial scholarship, and worked during college to make up for the difference. I was always a good student who got good grades. My point: I assumed that I knew what I needed to know to be a reasonably financially successful adult. Keep reading »

Cash & Coupling: Your Credit’s Good, Your Partner’s … Not So Much

Hopefully, you’re proud of your credit score and shred the five credit card offers you get every day, knowing that you worked hard to earn a rating as high as Matthew McConaughey on any given Sunday afternoon. But what if your man’s score isn’t nearly as pretty as he is? Sure, he might be awfully talented with his hands, but when those hands just don’t know how to pay bills on time, it can make you wonder if he’s worth it in the long-term.

Handling this situation can be complicated, but relationship expert Susan J. Elliot and Stacy Johnson, creator and host of “Money Talks,” a nationally syndicated financial news series, offered these tips on how you can delicately deal with a guy who’s in need of some major credit rehab. Keep reading »

Money 101: When To Pay With Cash, When To Use Credit Cards & When To Finance

If you’re lucky enough to have money in this crap-tastic economy, you’ve got to do all you can to make sure you’re using it wisely enough to not only remain financially afloat now, but also in the foreseeable – and even distant – future. Doing so involves carefully considering the way you dole out those Benjamins. While some purchases are best paid for in cash, you can get a better bang for your buck by putting some on a credit card. For info on which purchases are better financed with cold, hard cash and which should be paid for in small increments, consider these tips, courtesy of personal finance expert Manisha Thakor.
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Poll: What’s Your Bill-Paying Policy?

When it comes to paying your bills, what’s your policy?

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Cash & Coupling: I’m A Spender, He’s A Saver

My husband works in sales, and when he gets a commission check, I’m halfway to the mall before it even hits our account. But while my first response is to go shopping, the only -ing he’s thinking about is saving. We have yet to get into a physical tug-of-war over the check, but honestly, we’ve come close. Understandably, having opposing money philosophies is common in relationships; I’m thinking my situation’s sounding awfully familiar to all kinds of ladies out there. To get tips on how to prevent differing spending habits from causing discord with your guy, I consulted dating coach Lori Gorshow and financial expert J.D. Roth of the personal finance blog Get Rich Slowly. If you find yourself in my situation, here’s how to cope … Keep reading »

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