It's not nearly as good a deal as you may think.
The mortgage interest deduction is one of the most celebrated tax deductions in all of tax deduction-dom. It’s cited as one of the benefits of homeownership, right behind “you’re not throwing your money away,” and it is repeated over and over again. Unfortunately, I believe it’s misrepresented. It’s not as good as you think.
I’ll explain why.
Finding the money to pay off debt or build savings doesn't have to make life dull.
If your goal is to destroy debt or build savings, you're going to need to find extra money in your current budget. I've recently shown you 28 tips to save on groceries, 18 ways to save on clothes and 16 tips to save on home improvement.
Now it's time to tackle another expense that can soak up the cash: entertainment.
Efforts are afoot to prohibit companies from pulling credit reports of most prospective hires.
Should an employer have access to your credit report when you’ve applied for a job? Is that really fair? What if you can’t pay your bills because you were laid off or had major medical bills?
More lawmakers think it’s not. At least 16 states are considering a ban on employer access to credit reports unless they're filling law enforcement jobs or those that involve handling lots of money. Hawaii and Washington state already have similar laws on the books. (A federal version was introduced but apparently is going nowhere in Congress.)
Credit reports can affect your access to credit and how much interest you’ll pay, and increasingly, whether you’ll be hired. A recent survey by the Society for Human Resources Management found that:
She fed her fiance on $25 for a week, and he was well-fed. Sometime he had too much to eat.
Our project has come to an end. The Husband-Elect, a 6-foot, 205-pound man in his mid-30s, has been successfully fed for a week on $25. Needless to say, we are celebrating with beer.
Thanks to everyone who wrote throughout with suggestions (especially "wosnes" and "CJ"). Your ideas were super helpful, especially during a midweek culinary rut, when my sinuses threatened to take over the world.
Included below is a breakdown of the week: the final numbers, an analysis of what worked and what didn’t, the Husband-Elect’s exit interview, and recipes made over the seven days. I’d love to hear what you think and what you would have done differently.
Are 47 shirts, 14 sweaters, a pile of shoes and all those comic books really necessary?
It seems like every time I travel, I come home committed to win my war on stuff. This time was no different. I lived out of a single carry-on bag while vacationing in Belize recently, and even that felt luxurious. Now I’ve returned to a house packed with doodads and gewgaws, knickknacks and baubles.
The more I purge stuff from my life, the more I travel, and the more I see (and read) about how little others need to get by, the stronger my conviction to reduce what I own. I’m in awe of my friend Leo from Zen Habits, for instance. At his secondary blog, mnmlist, Leo has been chronicling his attempt to reduce the number of thing he owns. At first, this was his 100 Things Challenge (he wanted to own just 100 personal items). Recently, he’s upped the ante. It’s now a 50 Things Challenge. Wow.
I’m not ready to go to this extreme -- not even close. But I am beginning to wonder:
Will anyone have sympathy for the investors who gave their money to 'America's Prophet'?
Sean David Morton claimed that he used psychic powers developed in a Nepalese monastery to accurately predict market performance. "I have called ALL the highs and lows of the market, giving EXACT DATES for rises and crashes over the last 14 years," he wrote in his newsletter in 2006.
Bizarre claims alone aren’t enough to get you in trouble with the SEC, but messing with other people’s money is.
N.J. police write an average of 9,770 cell phone tickets a month. Meanwhile, a poll found an increase in texting while driving.
New Jersey has a law prohibiting drivers from texting or talking on their cell phones while behind the wheel, but it's clear many have not gotten the message.
The evidence is in the number of tickets state police officers have written over the last two years. In the past 23 months, 224,725 citations -- an average of 9,770 a month -- have been issued to motorists for violating the state's cell phone law.
Food coupons, audiobooks, kids' workshops and free museum admission are among this week's specials.
Here it is Friday already and time for another edition of Friday food freebies and deals. We’ve got some deals you can’t eat this weekend, too, thanks to our friends at Cities on the Cheap.
- Bing: Find local foods
If you’re worried you can’t possibly see all the Oscar-nominated films by Sunday, you might want to check out the Oscar movie marathons at the AMC and Cinemark chains.
Mark your calendar for Free Cone Day, coming up March 23 at Ben & Jerry’s.
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