Welcome To Money Smart Guides!

Overwhelmed by debt? Want to make investing a breeze? The goal of this site is to help you get out of debt and start investing for your future. If you are unsure where to start, click here to begin. I will break everything down for you in small, obtainable steps so that you can take control of your finances once and for all.

Tools I Use To Manage My Money

finance tools I useI’ve been getting a bunch of emails lately asking me about the various financial tools I use to manage my money. While it’s great to get emails and I love replying to readers to help them on their financial journey, I figured it would make sense to simply list out the products I use to manage my money. Here is the list.


For budgeting, right now I am using an excel spreadsheet that I created. You can find a bunch of great ones in this post I wrote a while back.

I realize that not everyone likes manual budgets like me, so know that there are some great automatic ones out there. In the past I’ve used Power Wallet and thought they were really good. I’ve also used You Need A Budget and was blown away at how awesome their product was. [Read the full article]

How To Turn Gift Cards Into Cash

how to turn gift cards into cash

Ahh, gift cards. They can either be the greatest thing ever or the worst thing ever, depending on which store they are for. In the old days, like 10 years ago, if you received a gift card from Aunt Maude to a department store that you never shop at, you really didn’t have many options. But thank goodness technology has come along to save us all. You now can turn gift cards into cash. In fact, you have 5 ways to go about doing this, and I am going to show you each one. So, without futher ado, here is how to turn gift cards into cash. How To Turn Gift Cards Into … [Read the full article]

Selling Your Car? Here’s How To Get The Highest Payout


Selling a car can be a huge and complicated process and many people get incredibly stressed out during it. The worry of not getting a high enough amount, no interest and the seemingly never-ending list of tasks leading up to getting the car listed can lead many people to give up before the car is even ready for sale! Not to mention deciding where to advertise it – that’s where websites like Boost Classifieds can come in handy. Many car dealerships will also offer a trade-in service for used cars, but you tend to get less money when going this route. Here are some … [Read the full article]

4 Instances Where You Should Consider Seeking Compensation

legal proceedings

Business is fraught with legalities of various size and importance. However, certain issues require more serious attention than others – many of these areas deal directly with compensation. To clarify – compensatory measures are taken when you feel your business has been unlawfully harmed by the actions of another party. Below we have listed four instances where you should consider seeking some form of compensation. 1. Income Loss Businesses must be able to protect themselves against loss of income caused by a range of potential issues both internal and external. If … [Read the full article]

An Education In Finance

investing with a small amount of money

Nobody teaches ‘money’ at school. It might be a good idea if they did. There are many businesses that exist to persuade people to part with their money. They range from banks and insurance companies to the whole of the retail sector, online and on Main Street. There is no suggestion that there is anything wrong with them but how people handle their financial affairs impacts greatly on their happiness. There are some simple tips that will help everyone, no matter their age so that they have a good chance of avoiding trouble. Events such as the recent recession can … [Read the full article]

This Summer Build Value To Your Home

home improvement

With summer approaching fast, it is time to get inspired into making some modern home improvements. Whether you're planning on selling your house or just want to bring it up to date, there are various projects for you to consider. Adding great value to your family home can be made a lot easier with home improvement loans, here is a great valuation tool to help. We all fantasize about our dream homes. Some people want to have beautifully landscaped gardens, while others want eco-friendly designs. No matter what ticks your boxes, here are a few examples of home … [Read the full article]

Finding The Right Forex Broker For You

basic investment

I am all about finding the right broker when it comes to investing your money. After all, you need to make sure that the brokers you are considering have the tools and the investment options that you need. There is no point in investing with a broker that only deals with low cost ETFs when you are looking to trade stocks on a regular basis. The same idea holds true when it comes to forex. You need to compare forex brokers so that you know they have what you need. Otherwise, success will be hard to come by. So what do you look for in a forex broker comparison? Here … [Read the full article]

You Are Your Greatest Enemy When Investing

you are your own enemy

I talk a lot about investing here and regularly tell you that most of us fail because of our emotions. We get too excited or too scared and do the wrong thing at the wrong time. I even detailed my struggles with the post of my worst investments ever. One thing that I did after making these mistakes was to look back on them and see where I went wrong. While it wasn’t always easy to admit that I screwed up (it would have been a lot easier to ignore it actually), it was what needed to be done. Below are some tips for you to take a proactive approach with your investing … [Read the full article]

Betterment Introduces RetireGuide, Other New Features For Investor Success

Tax Loss Harvesting

Most readers know that I am a big fan of Betterment. I have been investing my money with them for a few years now and have had zero complaints. While I do like the ease of automatic investing as well as their low fees, what I enjoy most is that they are always innovating. I get email updates from them all of the time about new features they are starting to offer clients. The other day, I received another such email and had to share it with you. They have come out with two new features, RetireGuide and TLH+ for all customers. Not sure what either of these are? No … [Read the full article]