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.

ExpertTolstoy famously said: “Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself”. This can be very aptly applied to our own personal financial situations. When we find ourselves in a bit of fiscal rut, it can be tempting to pick loopholes in the economy and find shortcuts where there are none. But, when the chips are down, we can only ever look at our own financial habits in the hope of creating significant change.

You can’t change the financial world but you can change your own. Take a stand and regain control of your finances like so many others are – by becoming your own financial expert. We’ve outlined 3 simple ways you can become you own finance guru.

Plan Ahead

It may seem an obvious step to take but the biggest favor you can grant yourself is to have a long-term action plan. This means planning clearly and strategically for each of life’s milestones, whether you wish to set up a college fund or start saving for retirement.

Fortunately for the fiscally-challenged among us, finance data is more accessible than ever. So take advantage of the many internet tools available to you that do the work of a financial expert for next to nothing.
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investing lessons

5 Investing Lessons To Live By

In a previous issue of Kiplinger’s magazine, Kathy Kristof wrote a column that compares the lessons learned in the movie Moneyball with investing advice. For those that haven’t seen the movie, Moneyball is a baseball movie about the Oakland Athletics General Manager Billy Beane. The A’s are a small market team, meaning they can’t spend a ton of money on high priced free agents. They have to find a way to win with a small payroll. Beane accomplishes this by […]Read the full article...

round table

The Round Table – July 20, 2014

Can you believe July is almost over already? Where did the time go? Maybe it went so fast because of how busy I am. I looked back at my last Round Table post and it was a month ago! That just shows you how busy I have been. Still doing lots of work around the house. I am currently painting because we are going to be keeping new carpet. I figure I paint now and not worry about getting paint […]Read the full article...

cell phone plan

When Saving Money Goes Wrong

I am always looking to cut costs. Whether it is shopping when things are on sale, taking advantage of cash back offers, or reviewing insurance quotes, I am always looking to save. This includes my cell phone.  A few weeks ago, I went about changing my cell phone plan to save some money and ended up relearning a valuable lesson: no one cares about your money as much as you do. Shopping For Cell Phone Deals I currently have AT&T […]Read the full article...

mobile technology

A Helping Hand: The Role Mobile Technology Plays In Philanthropy

When people discuss the effects of mobile technology on social interaction they tend to dwell on the negative. They mention teens texting on their phones at the dinner table, interacting with their friends on Facebook instead of in person, or Instagramming their life instead of living it. However, a recent USA Today article titled Mobile Tech Is Changing The Game For Philanthropy, makes the case that mobile technology is actually acting as a catalyst for charitable donations. Here are a few ways […]Read the full article...

racking up debt

3 Simple Steps To Stop Racking Up Debt

The thing about debt is that once you have it, you are likely to have more of it. Just the way that money is said to attract money, debt seems to attract debt if you don’t get control over it. Having too much debt can take the fun out of your life, affect your daily activities and prevent you from doing what you really want to do long term. Here are 3 simple steps to stop racking up debt. Simple […]Read the full article...

common investing mistakes

3 Common Investing Mistakes

Investors make a ton of mistakes when it comes to investing in the stock market. I don’t blame them since there is so much conflicting information out there. I found this great article from The Wall Street Journal that addresses the 3 most common investing mistakes the ordinary investor makes. In summary: Blowing in the wind: Some investors are just too easily swayed. And sometimes that leads them to sell low and buy high. Focusing too narrowly: Advisers preach diversification […]Read the full article...

airline industry

My Thoughts On The Airline Industry

As many of you know, I recently went away with my wife for two weeks for our honeymoon. One of the best “splurges” of the trip was flying first class both ways. I know I called this a splurge, but it really wasn’t since the round trip tickets cost us about $200. We saved up our US Air Dividend Miles for this trip and we only had to pay for taxes and fees. (Side note: I kept joking to my […]Read the full article...

Types of Long Term Investments

Types of Long Term Investments

I previously wrote about the various types of short term investments. Today I am going to discuss the various types of long term investments. As with short term investments, your time horizon plays an important role in determining whether or not you should invest short term or long term investments. Appropriate Use of Long Term Investments Before we get into talking about the various types of long term investments, we need to understand what exactly our time horizon is. Below […]Read the full article...

benefits of paying off debt

Benefits Of Paying Off Debt

If you have debt or have had debt in the past, you know how it controls your life. Stress, embarrassment, uncertainty; all of these feelings are caused by debt. It’s not fun being in debt. Instead of looking at your debt and worrying about how and when you will get out of debt, let’s switch our focus to the benefits of paying off debt. Let’s think about how great life will be when we do get out of debt. Why […]Read the full article...