We just came back from a weekend away; the drive up was dark, wet (after all we are in England) and the roads were frightfully busy. Obviously many people had the same idea as us: to drive around and visit with friends. Did you know that Flaubert was very much against trains? You may think that he hated trains because they were noisy and smelly but you would be wrong. He disliked trains because, as he put it, they ‘…will make it easier for people to get together and be silly together.’
Now that we can get together in the virtual realm and be silly there – just have a look at Facebook – why do we need to drive so much? Right, we had a very nice weekend anyway.
This week, my discovery was Nelson at Financial Uproar. I have been reading some of his stuff on and off for some time now (and no, I don’t agree that attractive people have it easier) but this week he published about entrepreneurship – not in the ‘oh, yeah, you can do it’ spirit of the pop-self help literature but in a thought provoking discussion of the possibility that some may not be cut out for it. I am also a great admirer of the Saturday Morning Dump – Nelson, if you ever need droppings for the dump give me a shout.
20’s Finance published the results of the dollar challenge. I missed this one when it started but twenty bloggers took the challenge of sharing where their money went. What does it teach us? Some revolutionary stuff! First, PF bloggers notice what they spend on and how (I thought this comes with the ‘job’; if we don’t know where our money goes how are we going to help others to learn). Second, budget lines are very person specific in the detail and their content is very different depending on one’s life situation (again, I believe, that this is the reason why set prescription are irrelevant and only broad adaptable rules can be useful). And third, not all PF bloggers are savers. Still, an interesting read!
SB at One Cent at a Time this week offered some really practical advice about improving your credit score . I may not agree with all the advice but it is practical and worth considering. And if you have debt (negative wealth, in principled speak) listen to SB and don’t push the savings: a) whether you save or pay off your debt you are increasing your net worth; b) debt is expensive and brings insecurity in the long run; and c) now may not be the time to build up masses of savings.
Browsing through PersonalFinanceWhizz I noticed that Jeremy has published a post on how to make extra money from home. My first reaction? Noooo! Not another one telling the world (well, the world of their blog) how to do something they have never tried. It wasn’t like that and I was very pleasantly surprised to read a thought provoking article ending with an example of how the author applied the pointers. When I am wrong, I say I am wrong. As to you, go have a look; who knows what will come out of it.
Do you have friends who just don’t get it? That you can’t go and spend a small fortune on a night out (the reasons don’t matter). Well, I do! I had to explain to some of my friends that we are not in a position to go out and spend $150 or more on dinner. I had to explain that I do find going to restaurants unsatisfactory – it is noisy; it is difficult to have a proper conversation and people drift in triviality; the food is not always good and the mark up is 1 to 10 (at least). If you have a similar problem read this article by Miss T at the Prairie Eco Thrifter.
For some time now, I have been playing around with different scenarios for our financial future. These mainly come down to re-structuring properties (in different countries but none of these income generating). It would have never occurred to me that one can buy a second hand shipping container (or several) and live in them. Interested? Read all about it on Sustainable Personal Finance and before you poo-poo the whole idea look at these pictures . May be a tad impractical for the UK but still worth thinking about.
And this is all for this issue of principled money posts. Till next Sunday.