Posted by Donna Freedman on May 10, 2013 | 40 comments
On Tuesday I participated in a Tweetchat sponsored by FT Press, an imprint of Pearson and publisher of books by my MSN Money colleague Liz Weston. If you missed the event, at least some of the Tweets can be found in the publisher’s Tweetchat room. A spokeswoman for the company says a .pdf summary of the questions and discussion is in the works.
To promote the chat, FT Press gave out a few copies of “Deal With Your Debt” to random questioners. (Did any of you win? Tell us!) Now it’s my turn to hand out the revised and updated version of this book, which I can happily say is written for people in the real world.
Just check the description: “Award-winning personal finance expert Liz Weston reveals why it’s simply impractical to ‘just pay off every dime’ and ‘live forever debt free’ — and why trying to do so can actually make you poorer. It’s smarter to control and manage your debt, and Weston shows you how.”
Posted by Donna Freedman on Apr 24, 2013 | 16 comments
On Tuesday I participated in a TweetChat sponsored by Ally Bank, on the topic of “teaching kids the value of money.” One of the responses from another participant frankly startled me.
The question: “When is the right time to talk to your children about credit card debt?”
The answer: “I’d say when they have their own card (and a real sense of consequences), most likely as a freshman in college.”
After picking my jaw up off the kitchen table, I sent out this response: “Waiting till they have their own card is like waiting til daughter gets pregnant to say, “Don’t misuse that thing, y’hear?”
Posted by Donna Freedman on Mar 31, 2013 | 22 comments
My month-long experiment, aka NaBloPoMo, ends today. Thanks to all who read along.
Despite its having been a stressful month, I’m glad I took this plunge because it taught me a little something. Three little somethings, actually.
Posted by Donna Freedman on Mar 30, 2013 | 14 comments
As I hinted in “Thanks a million,” changes are afoot in the way I do business at MSN Money. Specifically: Frugal Nation is no more. Instead, I’ll be writing three times a week (not five!) at MSN Money Smart Spending.
Relieved? Yes. But sad, too.
After all, Frugal Nation was my baby alone: For more than a year I posted five times a week, offering “save money today” advice and also bigger-picture articles about money and how we use it, abuse it and sometimes deify it.
Posted by Donna Freedman on Mar 4, 2013 | 34 comments
While preparing to write “Craziest ways to save a buck,” today’s post over at my day job, I was by turns amused and a little disturbed by what young people consider “crazy” frugality.
The post was based on a contest offered by DoSomething.org. Students 25 and under are invited to send in their wildest money-saving tips. The prize is a $4,000 scholarship, so send any students you know over there to enter.
But is getting books and CDs from the library now considered nutty behavior? What about locking up a debit card, using coupons, carrying a water bottle, eating leftovers or doing laundry at a relative’s house – any of those sound wacky to you?
Worse than that, though, were the false economies. For example, more than a few students said they brought home condiment packets and napkins from restaurants to save money. But if you’re broke, what are you doing in restaurants? How much did you spend in order to get a few cents’ worth of free taco sauce?
Or how about some of these: