Should you borrow from your 401(k)?

A 401(k) loan is an enticing prospect during financial hardship, and may seem more preferable than a withdrawal, but the risks are vast. … Read More

40 year mortgages are here (maybe). Would you want one?

To help more people afford homes, there is talk of a new 40 year mortgage product. This of course would not help who it is supposed to. … Read More

How to know if a large purchase is affordable

People often think only of the per-month cost when determining what they can afford, but that can be an expensive mistake. Can you afford it? It’s a simple question on its face, but the more you dig into it, the … Read MoreRead More

PayDay candy bar

Don’t use payday lenders

Back when I was working at Kinko’s doing layout, one of my regular customers would often ask me to create or update an application form for his company. It was for some kind of loan, and as I had to … Read MoreRead More

"Do Not Paint" sign

Should you get a loan to pay off your debt?

Paying off debt is hard. It can feel like you’re not even making progress. Sometimes this is actually true. If you make minimum payments on your credit cards, you’re basically never going to pay anything off. And if you’ve got … Read MoreRead More

The complicated ethics of peer-to-peer lending

  “If you lend money to one of my people among you who is needy, do not be like a moneylender; charge him no interest.” – Exodus 22:25 “Neither a borrower nor a lender be, For loan oft loses both … Read MoreRead More

The Debt Math Throwdown (or testing the debt snowball)

  In my discussion about how to pay off your debt, I mentioned how there were primarily two schools of thought: pay off the highest interest rate first, or pay off the smallest debt first (a.k.a. “the debt snowball”). The … Read MoreRead More

How to figure out which debt to pay off first

  If you’re like most people, you have a few credit cards here and there, maybe a student loan payment, and perhaps a car payment. In addition, maybe you own a house and have a mortgage payment. That’s a lot … Read MoreRead More

Is there ever a reason to buy a new car?

  New cars are alluring. Who can deny that? The combination of something being all new, mixed with the sense of freedom (real or imagined) creates an intoxication that is hard to resist. Notice I said “intoxication.” Like lots of … Read MoreRead More

Ignore interest rates on debt

  “This card has a 12% APR.” “My student loan is fixed at 5%.” “I can get a new car with a 0% interest loan.” Interest rates are talked about quite often when it comes to financial matters. Mostly, this … Read MoreRead More