Our weekly roundup from around the web this week features another great lineup of articles.
If this is your first visit to Money with a Purpose or your first time to check out our weekly roundup, welcome.
I follow a lot of great bloggers. I read as much as I can.
Time doesn't allow me to dive in as much as I'd like.
There are so many great writers out there covering a variety of topics.
This roundup represents my top four choices of the week. And it's always a very difficult choice.
But John's “retirement” is a pretty active and productive time. John is the primary author of the content on his blog.
In addition to running ESI Money, he also purchased Rockstar Finance, a curator, and publisher of what they feel are the best articles from around the web. Rockstar publishes a daily email with featured articles and a secondary list of Noteworthy titles.
The combination of ESI Money and Rockstar keep me plenty busy reading.
This week's article from ESI Money is actually a guest post from Your Money Blueprint. The writer offers one of the most in-depth analyses of an age-old debate on whether to pay off the mortgage early or invest. You'll find a detailed analysis of both the financial and non-financial issues involved with the decision.
If you're thinking about paying down your mortgage or in the process of doing so, I encourage you to read this post.
There's been a bit of discussion recently on whether paying off your mortgage or investing was better – both here at ESI Money (see Which is Better: Paying Off a Mortgage or Investing More?) as well as on Rockstar Finance (see Money Match-Up: Pay Off Debt Versus Invest and here Money Match-Up: Pay Off Mortgage Versus Invest Excess Funds Elsewhere).
Apathy Ends is another personal finance blog whose writer is a Millennial who graduated from college and, along with his wife, came out with a pile of student loan debt ($85,000).He describes how their wake-up call came when they got their tax document and saw they had paid $5,000 in interest for the year!
That wake-up call caused them to change how they managed their finances and get on a debt reduction strategy. In the last three years, they've paid down $60,000 of debt and accumulated a $90,000 nest-egg.
That's an impressive record.
On Apathy Ends‘ About page, he offers a “cliff notes” version of what the site is about as follows:
“I love writing, reading and talking about Personal Finance. This site is all about Taking Action and becoming one of those success stories you read about instead of letting Apathy steal your ambition.”
The article I've chosen to feature this week is about finding balance when pursuing financial independence and early retirement (FIRE). Many in the FIRE community become obsessive about cutting expenses, paying down debt, and saving money. Some do this to the point of losing balance on living life now. Though the article focuses on the FIRE community, it's relevant to us all.
Bad news for the environment* but good news if you don't own a bike and like the principles of Financial Independence! FIRE (Financial Independence Retire Early) does not require a plethora of middle fingers at all the things that make up the “Traditional American Life.”
Money Saved is Money Earned
Money Saved is Money Earned is a blog run by co-bloggers Sebastian and Tawnya.
Sebastian emigrated from India and works as a Senior Financial Analyst for the City of Portland. Tawnya is a self-described frugal teacher (special education!).
They are from different backgrounds representing different age groups. Tawnya is 31, while Sebastian has put three kids through college and owned his home free and clear for fifteen years.Sebastian and Tawnya bring a unique perspective to personal finance with their different backgrounds and experiences.
Today's featured post comes from Sebastian. Have you ever received mail from a resort with a too good to be true offer to come to their properties for a visit?
I'm sure you have. We get these all of the time, including this week from the Westin inviting us to Cancun.
You know the catch, right? To get the deal, you have to agree to sit in on a sales pitch for the resort.
Sebastian offers great detail on his experience with his visit to a Westin resort.
As with a lot of personal finance, there is both a financial and personal (emotional) aspect to the story.
If you've been on one of these tours in the past, I'm sure you will resonate with this. If you haven't, it will help you in deciding whether it's worth it or not.
Sebastian here. I recently had the opportunity to participate in a presentation for Westin Vacation Ownership. I have been through other timeshare presentations before, and aside from my curiosity about Westin's version, I thought it would be interesting to give my take in a post.
The Finance Twins
The Finance Twins is a blog written by identical twin brothers, Camilo and Francisco.The brothers lost their dad at the age of seven after his long battle with cancer. Their widowed mom raised them. They grew up poor.
Both of them started working at the age of sixteen. They learned the value of work and money at an early age.
They also learned the value of education.
Camilo got his undergraduate degree from the Wharton School of Business and a Masters from Harvard. Francisco is a doctor who got his M.D. from the Mayo Clinic School of Medicine.
That's two impressive resume's!
Like many recent graduates, they came out with a lot of student debt. They got to work to pay it off, learn about personal finance, savings, and investing.
The purpose of their blog is to teach others what they've learned and to help them avoid costly mistakes.
The featured article I chose for this week's roundup explores their view that our relationship with money is broken. In it, they explore consumerism and its influence on the low savings rate for most Americans. Among other useful things, they offer insights into how to reframe how we look at money.
I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
When did saving become the enemy? When the topic of saving money comes up, it usually has a negative connotation. It normally goes something like this: “I'd love to save, but I just can't afford to.” Instead of something positive like, “I know how important it is to save for my future, so I'm willing …
Money with a Purpose
I hope you enjoyed this week's article in the roundup.
Be sure to come back next week for another episode.
If there are topics you'd like to see included, I welcome the input and feedback.
Please let me know what you think.
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