The last few months have been a wild experience with the coronavirus pandemic. Socially, physically, emotionally, and financially. In high school history classes, I remember talking about defining moments in time. Old-timers would say things like "I was just leaving work when JFK was shot in Dallas", "I was...when Apollo 11 landed on the moon", … Continue reading Where were you when…
I worked at Wells Fargo during their shameful years. Any garbage you heard about their slimy sales tactics are likely true. I had managers direct me to run credit card applications without telling the applicant (although I never did). I watched employees copy credit card info from our system to sign people up for credit … Continue reading How are salesmen steering your decisions?
Occasionally, friends/clients ask if they should refinance so they can lower their mortgage payment. If interest rates have fallen, if you are trying to drop mortgage insurance and your current lender is playing hardball, or if you are just trying to lower your payment by extending your loan out further, then refinancing may be the … Continue reading What is Mortgage Recasting?
As a real estate agent I spend a lot of time looking at mortgage quotes. I think I spend more time than most agents, because I'm such a nerd about personal finances. That, and I want to make sure my buyers are getting a good deal. I think it's an important part of my job. … Continue reading Should I buy down my mortgage interest rate?
When you think about the richest people you know, you likely imagine those living in huge homes, driving expensive new cars, and spending big money on vacations/entertainment. Isn't it funny how we associate spending money with having money? But how else are you supposed to know the wealthy from the broke from the outside looking … Continue reading Being Rich vs Looking Rich
My goal for FI is $1.2 mil net worth. I'll call $1.2 mil my "number". My primary residence is excluded from my number, since it doesn't produce cashflow while living in it. I'm also not including any stock we hold from old privately-held employers. I hope we can cash those out someday but have no … Continue reading My quick plan for financial independence
WARNING, this post may be more dry than some others... Lots of numbers and graphics... It may not be as entertaining or short as my other posts. But if you apply what I'm saying, it'll likely save you a few thousand dollars the day you sign for your next home purchase... and maybe a little … Continue reading You need to shop harder for a mortgage
Over the last few years, I've occasionally wished that I had bought big into Amazon, Apple, Bitcoin, or something else with explosive growth. I keep most of my money in cheap index funds like VFIAX, VFWAX, and VTSAX. VFIAX is the S&P 500 fund. Here's how the results of $10k purchases 2 years ago compares for … Continue reading Why I hate trading stocks
One of the more frequent questions I get from friends is "how much should I contribute to my 401k?" While there is not 1 right answer for everyone, there are a few things everyone should consider. Also consider that 401ks are still relatively new in the investment world. They've only been around since about 1980, … Continue reading How much should I contribute to my 401k?
If you're not familiar with the term credit card churning, here is a quick summary: you apply for multiple credit cards, get all their sign-up bonuses, pay them off, and close them (often before getting charged annual fees). I've churned through several credit cards and will probably go through several more. There are a lot … Continue reading What is credit card churning and how do you do it?