For a while, I was sure we were part of a larger trend. Over the past couple of years, my husband and I have both become stubbornly thrifty. Nearly every piece of furniture in our new home, for example, was either handed down to us from family members who were trying to get rid of the junk or was found at a thrift store and repurposed.
Instead of being embarrassed by the dinged wood and slightly mismatched secondhand furniture that crowds our modest house, however, we’ve been proud to show it off.
The sign at the world-class Metropolitan Museum of Art says it merely recommends you pay $25 to get in. But a lawsuit charges that the museum too eagerly swipes the full amount on credit cards when tourists pass through its colonnaded doors.
Low-income people in poor countries can’t usually access traditional banking systems. Either there isn’t one, or they don’t have enough credit to qualify. This stifles entrepreneurs and artisans in small communities who want to grow their businesses. Enter Kiva, a nonprofit that facilitates microloans from individuals like me to individuals or groups in impoverished countries.
Each time I’ve given loan, I have teared up. How amazing is it that we as regular individuals can help someone in another country change their life and grow their business for only $25 at a time? I can’t even imagine what it would be like to live in a world where I couldn’t qualify for a bank account or not be considered for a loan of any kind, even a credit card.
Learn more about my microloans and read on to learn about 10 of my favorite personal finance blog posts from the past week, all of which have excellent money tips and tricks!
We had a nice, healthy debate in the office about this: Should a woman making more money than a guy eliminate him as a romantic prospect? Some thought a man may feel inadequate if he dates a woman who makes more money. I also heard the opinion that most women were not going to want to be with a guy less accomplished, because it is simply not attractive and they may not want to be the breadwinner. I am sure that is true in some cases, but I like to think character is more crucial than cash.
Recently, my fiance and I opened our first joint bank account. It took more time — and was more emotionally charged — than I anticipated.
After spending more than an hour filling out forms and going over our options with a personal banker, we drove to a local eatery — which was my suggestion; he would have rather saved the cash and eaten in — and hashed out a blueprint for how we’ll manage our money.
By the time we left the restaurant, I was drained. We’re both planners, and so we had talked about these issues before. But this was harder. It was the real deal.