About Amber Gilstrap

Amber is a twenty-something CPA from Kansas City, Missouri who loves writing, working out, and---of course---finding fresh ideas for saving money. Follow her on twitter @amberinks.

Gift Tax: Don’t Fear Taxes When You Give (Or Receive)

The gift tax rules allow you to give or receive up to $14,000 before incurring taxes.

Gift tax rules allow tax-free gifts up to $14,000. How does the gift tax work? Do you owe taxes on a cash gift? How much can you give before paying tax?

In The Daycare vs. Stay-at-home Parent Debate, Some Costs Aren’t Obvious

In The Daycare Vs. At-home Parent Debate, Some Costs Aren't Always Obvious

The daycare vs stay-at-home parent debate is a touchy one. As you make your decision, consider these costs and consequences that aren’t always obvious.

Renter’s Insurance: When You Need It, How To Get It

Just because you don't own a home doesn't mean you don't need insurance: Renter's insurance covers your belongings in the event of a fire, disaster, or burglary.

Just because you don’t own a home doesn’t mean you don’t need insurance: Renter’s insurance covers your belongings in the event of a fire, disaster, or burglary.

Emergency Funds: Everything You Need To Know

Everything you need to know about emergency funds.

Wherever you are on the journey to “getting better with money”, the concept of an emergency fund–rainy day savings that will be there for you in case the unthinkable happens–is critical. Because having some money put aside is simply so vital to getting on your feet financially–which is what this site is here to help you do–we put together this comprehensive article.

To Make Your New Year’s Resolution Stick — Aim Lower

To make your New Year's resolutions stick, try aiming lower and get several small victories under your belt.

Specific and actionable goals are more likely to be met. Setting a goal of “I want to earn more money.” isn’t as good as “I want to earn an extra $300 per month.” The second goal is specific. You can really start planning and acting on a specific goal which means you are more likely to succeed.

Your Tax Document Checklist: The No-Stress Guide To Filing Your Taxes, Part 1

Use our free federal tax document checklist to help you get organized for your tax return.

This is part one of Money Under 30’s six part “No-Stress Guide To Filing Your Taxes”. First thing you need to do is make sure you have all the forms and documents you need. It’s a lot less stressful to gather your info before you start.

13 Inexpensive and Unique Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas


It’s that time again. St. Valentine is going to be spreading his love to everyone in just a few short days. Valentine’s Day, February 14, is right around the corner! Commercial holiday or not – are you ready to give an awesome gift to your sweetie? Valentine’s Day gifts don’t have to cost a fortune. […]

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 years, and during that time we lived on a very tight budget. We saved 20 percent of […]

DIY or Buy? When It’s Cheaper to Make It Yourself or Buy Off The Shelf


Last year, the Better Business Bureau received 5,558 complaints regarding general contractors, placing the group in the top 30 out of all industries tracked, according to Money Talks News. No wonder home improvement stores are packed to the gills on weekends and everybody is becoming a do-it-yourself-er – no one wants to get ripped off! […]

How To Budget For Holiday Shopping If You Haven’t Saved For Gifts


No money for Christmas gifts this year? Get a plan, opt out when you can, and don’t get so caught up in holiday spirit that you forget your other goals. Here’s how to stretch your budget and get the most presents for your buck.