Bennies and Burnies

Introducing the Bennies and Burnies Have you ever seen a movie, heard a song, watched a TV show, video game or come away from an entertaining Youtube video thinking, "Yah, right! Real people can't afford to live like that!" Yes, I recognize that our experience with entertainment, particularly with movies and TV shows,...

Time to Unload a Timeshare?

From Time Share Paradise to Time Share Hell I recently received a question about selling a time share that had become a financial burden, and rather than respond to just the one reader, I think this topic deserves more attention. Several years ago, following a bankruptcy attorney conference where I was an exhibitor (I'm not...

Consumer Spending Problems more than just Buying Stuff

Time to Rethink Consumerism? Earlier this year, I took over responsibility for managing our bankruptcy counseling services. This service has been a requirement for bankruptcy filers since a 2005 update to our bankruptcy code. As a result, I have been able to look over a lot...

How Much Grocery Spending Is Too Much?

As I meet with workshop participants, individuals and couples going through bankruptcy, and others seeking financial counseling, the subject of grocery spending sometimes comes up. We all seem to want to know if what we're spending on groceries is reasonable or if we're way off base (and over budget). It is, after...

Debt Collections and Consumer Rights

Know Your Consumer Rights! The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) aggressively pursues consumer complaints against abusive debt collectors. This is not a new effort, but it...

The Tax Refund Pyramid

What to do with my tax refund? It's that time of the year again, when CPAs go into overdrive, when citizens fret over their deductions and credits, and when those receiving a tax refund get to ask the age-old question: What do I do...

The Money Pie: The World’s Easiest Household Budget

How to Set up a Budget It's so easy to get frustrated with our personal and household budgets. After all, who wants to categorize every single expense, estimate them months into the future, only to find out (it always seems) that your income is insufficient to meet your expenses. That stinks more than that moldy...

Check (Android App Review)

Review of the App: Check 4th Review in the Series: Check (formerly Pageonce) According to the guidelines for my personal finance app review for my Android phone and/or...