• Blind-Sided by Being Short-Sighted – Think Long Term for the Road Ahead

    As I think about it, our national debt increases every year because of a multitude of factors including our almost universal propensity to not think in terms of the long run.  We are blind-sided by being short-sighted.  And it comes at a great cost. Humans tend to think short term for most things.  What are we going to eat tonight, what are we going to wear tomorrow, what is the weather like this weekend.  While it is important to live in the present, we should balance that with adequate planning for the future.  Most, if not all of our daily decisions are for the short term but as a result…

  • Home is Where the Heart (and Wallet) Is – A Home Buying Journey and Guide For You

    Are you interested in buying a home?  Do you currently rent and are looking to buy soon?  Are you looking to upgrade or downsize and need to sell?  I would like to share our home buying journey with you and important things that I’ve learned along the way.  Specific tips are mentioned below (scroll down). Our current home is actually our third home that we’ve purchased since my wife and I were married. This is another picture.   We purchased this home at a great price on August 2013 while the market was still recovering from the 2008 recession as a short sale .  It was an amazing deal and…

  • “It’s Personal!” Finance? I’m Not Going to Talk About My Money!!!

      When someone says to you “It’s personal!” it usually means that they don’t want to share with you whatever they’re referring to.  So no wonder we use the term personal finance because most us are especially private about our money affairs.  So my next question is why is it this way?  Why are we so guarded when it comes to how much money we make, how much money we have, etc? I believe that the reasons all boil down to this… FEAR So why do we carry around with us so much fear in regards to our finances?  Let’s look into this issue a bit deeper. Money is the…

  • Create an Estate Plan – Protecting your Family from Probate Court

    This month I had the opportunity to attend an estate planning seminar put on by a company that prepares estate plans.  To start off, I want to define: “Estate planning is the act of preparing for the transfer of a person’s wealth and assets after his or her death. Assets, life insurance, pensions, real estate, cars, personal belongings, and debts are all part of one’s estate.” The particular cost of this company’s services to prepare an estate plan was $2495 for individuals and $3495 for couples.  Not exactly cheap!  They also used scare tactics in order to persuade you to use their services to avoid pitfalls.  Here I’d like to share what I’ve…

  • Subscription Services… A Gain, Drain, or Prescription for Broke?

    Today there seems to be new subscription services available to consumers every single month.  There are over 7000 subscription box services alone!  These services can be an amazing time-saving and money-saving opportunity if used judiciously. However, as consumers, we have to be careful not to drain down our checking accounts with automatic “thoughtless” payments.  We can end up allowing companies to conveniently take our money away while we stand back and smile – oftentimes unaware of the real costs.  Perhaps they do not provide a real value nor are they really convenient for our bottom lines. As a consumer, the choices can be overwhelming, especially if you’re careful about your monthly…

  • “Money Pit” Pitfalls – “I Pity That Fool”

    Let’s relive the Eighties with Mr. T and the movie Money Pit with Tom Hanks. Ok let’s not and say we did. We can’t relive the decades past (thank goodness) and unfortunately we can’t simply erase our money mistakes of the past either. But if you are financially responsible and wary of the unethical money traps set for us by a relentless army of marketers, loan officers and the like, then you can succeed in the money game. I have composed a list of money pitfalls that so many people fall into. Perhaps you can be unlike them and avoid them like the plague. Here they are: Get Your First…

  • Success Stories – Interview with Real Estate Investor Brian Wilfong

    For the last 10 years, Brian along with his wife Sara and their “Real House Flipping” business have successfully flipped over a hundred homes in Waynesboro, Fishersville, Staunton, Charlottesville, Harrisonburg, and Rockingham/Augusta Counties. They have “flipped” both of the homes that they have lived in, and are currently “flipping” a beach house in Hilton Head, SC! 1) What are some of the biggest lessons you’ve learned in regards to managing money? The biggest lessons I’ve learned about managing money pertain to debt. Debt is very powerful, it can make you very wealthy or very poor depending on how you use it. There is good debt and bad debt and understanding…

  • Stuck in a Student Loan Standoff? Get Stubborn!

    There is nothing like a 1,000 pound brick hanging over your head.  Imagine that brick following you everywhere you go, no matter what you do.  You can go around ignoring the brick, but eventually you know it’s going to fall on you and it’s going to hurt.  That’s what it’s like with student loan debt. As of 2018, Americans collectively have $1.5 trillion of student loan debt according to Forbes.  Safe to say that is an enormous brick, weighing above the heads of 44 million borrowers.  And debt truly is a crushing burden that can negatively impact your path to financial freedom.   So the next question is this:  What do I…

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