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♥ & $: The Spending Diet: My Month of More Mindful Spending

December’s credit card bill came in the other day and it was all I could do not to gag. How did all my good intentions and careful planning go so horribly wrong? Yes, we had many unexpected medical expenses (don’t worry, everyone is ok). And yes, two … [Read more...]

Q&A: I Want to Travel Before Starting a Career, But What About my Student Loans?

Q: I am about to start paying off my $30,000 of student loan debt and am wondering how to approach this. Should I go with the most aggressive [repayment plan] or not? I am a waitress, so I never know what my income is going to be. I do have about … [Read more...]

Funny Money: A Quick Way to Cut Medical Costs

I'm happy to introduce "Funny Money", a new column offering irreverent but otherwise solid financial advice written by author and newspaperman Phil Villarreal. Weclome, Phil. -DW. You may think you're doing OK financially, but most people are a … [Read more...]

Renting: What You Get for $1,500 a Month

If you could live anywhere in the United States, where would you choose? If you’re reading Money Under 30 and you are in fact 20-or 30-something, you probably can’t afford a mansion, and that’s okay! Part of starting off right is living in a place … [Read more...]

Confessions of a New Homeowner: Expenses We Expected and Didn’t Expect

My husband and I closed on our first house on March 9, 2012.  Since then, it has been a whirlwind of new homeowner activities. Painting, fixing, landscaping, neighbor-meeting, decorating ... and spending. Lots of spending. We rented for several y … [Read more...]

Welcome to 2013, the Year of Crowdfunding for College

When the final draft of 2012 in review gets written, it deserves to go down — in personal finance terms — as the Year of Crowdfunding. All sorts of crowdfunding records were set and shattered, with some remarkable stories as a result. In the indie … [Read more...]

Q&A: How Do I Build Credit Fast?

A reader asks: I’m trying to get my credit score growing again. I’m in school full-time and work full-time, too. I have just one credit card – a Wells Fargo student card -- that greatly helped my credit score when I first got it. However, in the last … [Read more...]

What Your Mortgage Interest Rate Really Means

With mortgage rates so low right now, it seems everybody is talking about what a smoking hot mortgage rate they got on their new house. But mortgage rates are tricky. It's easy to look at a 3.75 percent APR mortgage rate and say "holy cow" when, 25 … [Read more...]

What’s Happening to My Taxes? The Fiscal Cliff Compromise in 60 Seconds

I don't write about politics until those rare days Washington actually does something that affects our daily lives. And after months of grandstanding and stonewalling over the “fiscal cliff”, today is one of those days. Here’s what the recent fisca … [Read more...]

When To Refinance: 3 Steps to Deciding Whether to Refinance or Not

Deciding when to refinance your home loan depends on several factors besides whether you can get a better mortgage rate than you already have. And though there are many reasons people refinance their mortgage, some are smarter financial moves than … [Read more...]