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How to Compare Your Income to Others (Without Being Rude) [Using 2015 Census Data]

Note: this post revises an earlier article dated October 12, 2015 that was based on 2014 data published by the US Census Bureau. Since then, the 2015 data has been released so it’s time for an update. Everyone likes to compare themselves to others—it’s basic human nature. But comparing your income to others is not a topic […]

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Ten Amazing Tax Breaks that Await Your Early Retirement [2016 Edition]

If you’re on a path to retire early, it makes sense to acquaint yourself with some wondrous tax savings. When you’re approaching retirement, these savings deliver motivation to stay the course (there’s a pot of gold at the rainbow’s end). When you’re already retired, these savings point to lucrative tax strategies (there’s a pot of gold sitting on the doorstep). Because […]

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A Solid Case for DIY Covers

Whenever you buy anything that’s worth much, inevitably someone tries to sell you a cover. “Your expensive new purchase,” they say, “needs solid protection.” I concede the point, but cases can be costly. Recently, I went online and dropped $100 on a new table tennis paddle. Like many case-worthy products, it’s a fragile thing that must […]

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2017 Obamacare Premium Tax Credit Calculator

In 2017 the federal government will once again offer a Premium Tax Credit (PTC) to qualifying taxpayers who buy health coverage from an approved health insurance exchange. To receive a PTC you must split the uprights between making too little and too much income. If you make too little, you drop out of Obamacare and into Medicaid. […]

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Compare Your Home’s Square Footage to Nationwide Surveys of Owners and Renters

Why should you care about your home’s square footage? Because inevitably, bigger living spaces trigger bigger spending. We all know that buyers of big homes suffer through higher down payments, broker commissions, and closing costs. But that’s just the start of their pain. After the deed to a mega-home is signed, the high costs continue as […]

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How to Sleep Soundly While Stock Markets Crash: the Wasting Asset Retirement Model

Retirement advisors must hate me. They call regularly, but they’re never hired. Why not? Ever since I retired in 2008, I’ve been executing my own plan for the future. I don’t need to hire experts because my approach is so simple, so boring, and so reliable that I can easily handle everything myself. Best of all, my retirement plan […]

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