MakingCentz

Snarky Thoughts on Personal Finance From a Dad of Two

College Without Debt? It’s Possible

There’s been a lot written recently about the cost of higher education and the growing

levels of student loan debt weighing down America’s young people.

Tydings Hall, University of MarylandThis is a serious problem with a massive ripple effect on the financial health of the nation. [See: Why You’re Broke – The Student Loan Burden.]

Many pundits have thrown out possible solutions to the problem, ranging from adjustments to loan terms and more public investment in higher education. There’s also been a healthy discussion about which colleges and degree programs offer the best value to students.

But there is one part of the equation that too often gets ignored in the conversation: parents.  Continue reading

Do You Pay for Online News?

Do you subscribe to newspaper?

Do you subscribe to newspaper?

I am a big fat hypocrite.

I have worked in journalism since I was a teenager, but don’t spend a lot of money to actually support news operations.

I don’t subscribe to a newspaper or a magazine. I read mostly free sources online and watch network and cable news programs.

Suffice it to say, I am not exactly helping when it comes to saving the journalism industry. Continue reading

Which Olympic Sport ‘Investor’ Are You?

What winter sport is the most representative of your investing style?

What winter sport is the most representative of your investing style?

Well, the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi are over. Hopefully this means winter itself is also on its way out.

It occurred to me while watching the Games over the last couple weeks that many of the sports can be compared to investing styles. There are some that are risky. Some that are kind of boring. Some are harder than others.

Do any of these sports apply to your investment style? Continue reading

Layoffs, Emergency Funds and Cars

I will not be purchasing this car in the near future.

I will not be purchasing this car in the near future.

We hear a lot of financial advisors talk about the importance of having an emergency fund. There is some disagreement about how large it needs to be, but most suggest stashing away three months of expenses, at minimum, for a rainy day.

My rainy day came Wednesday, when my full-time employer announced widespread layoffs. Suddenly, I went from having a steady paycheck to facing an uncertain professional future. Continue reading