The 7 Personal Finance Articles We Love This Week

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Looking at my bank statements for the last couple of months, I have been reasonably pleased with what I’m shelling out (or not shelling out) for. The only big purchase I’ve made is a plane ticket this summer (a round-trip flight to Chicago), which was fairly inexpensive, as plane tickets go. I’ve been hanging out in NYC for almost a month now, and I’ve been trying to be very aware of how I spend money here, versus how I spend money in LA. Something I’ve noticed is that I’m much more apt to spend money on food and drink in NYC, but in LA, I’d be more likely to spend on an inexpensive activity (like an outdoor movie). Obviously, a lot of this is related to the fact that it’s just still chilly in NYC, but I think it’s generally interesting to ask yourself what people are apt to spend on in their respective cities.

While this is certainly not the budgeting technique everyone should follow, typically one of the things I try to not spend too much on is alcohol. However, because I’ve been seeing a lot of friends for a drink here or there lately, I’ve been spending more than I otherwise would in this area. I don’t think it’s a problem, but it’s something that I’m aware of. I’ve read two pieces on the expenses that come with struggling with alcohol abuse this week, including a piece we posted yesterday on TFD, and a piece in the roundup below. The piece in this roundup is by Cait Flanders, who is now an e-friend of mine, because we syndicate her great work here on TFD. She breaks down what she spent on alcohol throughout her life, and it is both raw and informative, all at the same time.

I was also incredibly intrigued by the article in the roundup that details what happens if you maxed out your 401k every year. As I mentioned in my piece on the money goals I’m trying to reach before 25, I will not be maxing out my IRA this year, but I am trying to come close because I want to get as much money as I can into my retirement account early on. Anyway, those are just a few thoughts I had on the following seven articles, and I look forward to hearing all of your thoughts, too. Here are the seven PF articles we love this week, courtesy of Rockstar Finance:

1. Stack Your Money and Act Broke – Action Econ

“Acting as if you are broke to yourself is what will cause you to save some real money. When you are truly broke you have a necessity to challenge every expense, every line item, every dollar. Do this all the time and your cash will pile up.”

2. How Much You’d Have If You Always Maxed Out Your 401(k) – DQYDJ

“As you can see, no matter what year you started your account, after a few years it was a tremendous deal. You not only built a tax-free reservoir of wealth, but also shielded all of those contributions and gains from State and Federal taxes!”

3. Less Stuff, More Sex – The Minimalists

“It happens in almost every city. Someone projects their fears, expectations, and insecurities onto us: You guys aren’t real minimalists because… You drive a car. You own a smartphone. You sell books. You… whatever. It happens so frequently that we’re now inoculated to the criticism… But this time – in this Albertan bookshop – was different.”

4. Your Make or Break Number – Stefanie O’ Connell

“The make or break number isn’t a budget, it’s a benchmark for the financial viability of your life… You don’t need to plot out exactly what and where you’re spending each month, but you do need to commit to earning at least as much as your make or break amount.”

5. The True Cost of Wasting Money on Getting Wasted – Blonde on a Budget

“I’ve always said that I didn’t quit drinking to save money and that is true. I never cared about the numbers back then and, if I had, it would’ve been the wrong reason to quit. Recently, however, I’ve found myself wondering how much money I wasted on getting wasted… so I ran some numbers.”

6. “I Love You Money” – Beards and Money

“I love you money is that pile of money you put together for your loved ones that they can use to get their lives back together should you die. It’s money that says ‘I love you’ to your family beyond the grave.”

7. A 30-Day Crash Course on Managing Your Money – Forbes

“The goal of this challenge is simple: we want to help you train your brain to be more cognizant of your money. We want you to understand what’s coming in and what’s going out; what entices you to spend, what might help you save money or pay down debt and how to best invest what you’ve earned.”

Image via Unsplash

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