Thursday, July 30, 2015

Cash Cost of a Mortgage

In the pursuit of financial independence, one has to have a clear and realistic budget. For many, housing costs are the biggest budget category. This is also the case for me. My home mortgage, property taxes, and home insurance make up about 35% of my spending. That said, it's worth considering ways to reduce costs in this budget category.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

In Need of a Break

I used to love summer breaks. There's something magical that happens when you wake up without an alarm clock and don't know what day of the week it is. Being able to do anything on nothing more than a whim is extremely freeing. The last time I had an extended break was over 4 years ago!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

2015 Goals: Q2 Progress: The Mid-Year Update

I think I set a pretty good mix of goals this year. The financial ones will be real stretches to hit. The personal ones will take commitment over time. And the 5th goal will take a mix of creativity and commitment coupled with a bit of luck. How have I done in hitting these marks through the first half of 2015?

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Debating the Merits of Closed End Funds

I've struggled a bit with whether closed end funds (CEFs) deserve a place in a dividend portfolio. I had 5% of my portfolio in CEFs at one point last year. I later sold all of my CEF holdings in a quest to increase the quality of my dividend income. I've decided again to add some exposure to CEFs. Here's the biggest reason why:

Monday, June 1, 2015

How I Plan to Save for My Children's College Costs

College is obscenely expensive these days. Tuition, Room & Board, and Other Fees can total into the $50k/year range. My wife and I plan on fully funding our children's college educations. My parents funded mine. Her parents funded hers. The cycle goes on. I'm convinced that the cost of tuition needs to slow/fall, but no matter what, saving for the cost is going to require some effort.