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Budgeting

12 Ways to Trim Your Holiday Budget, Now

At the top of my list of most annoying things (up there with a box full of hangers and a stack of unfiled paperwork) sits this: stores that decorate for Christmas before Columbus has even had his day. The colored lights, faux foil icicles and...

Create a Bust-Proof Budget

The beginning of fall is welcome to many who delight in pumpkin spice lattes, the return of good TV and a change of season. For others, it is the unwelcome end of summer. Not only does it mean back to school or work, colder weather and darker...

What I Learned From Living on Cash

I have long preferred the simple swipe of plastic to handing over warm bills. (Doesn’t everyone?) Paying for things in cash is physically painful. As it should be.  When others have asked, my excuse for avoiding cash transactions has been that...

What is a Budget?

A budget is an estimate of income and expenses for a specific period of time in the future that can be used for personal, business or other purposes. Ideally, you have a "surplus" budget with extra income after all expenses and not a "deficit"...

The Basics of Budgeting

The following is an excerpt from “Art & Numbers: A Financial Guide for Artists, Writers, Performers, and Other Members of the Creative Class.” We also picked Elaine’s brain on money management for the creative class. Check out that Q&A here....

Know Your Unknowns

It was one of those minor life events that put a spotlight on a big financial issue. I’m the type to stay on top of household spending, but when my daughter started preschool, my system went haywire. I combed through our bag of receipts and...

Co-Sign at Your Own Risk

Should you co-sign a loan or credit card for a friend or relative? I get this question a lot, especially since  the economic downturn has made it harder for people to obtain loans.   There are certainly situations where you might be inclined to go...

Open a Joint 'Romance' Account

Maybe thinking about a bank account doesn’t evoke the same kind of flutter you get when you look into the eyes of your darling. But here’s an idea that can rev up your chemistry and your bottom line as a couple:    Open a romance account—a...

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