Write For Free From Broke

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Do you have your own blog and are looking for more exposure?  Maybe you don’t but you’re a good writer and you’re looking for a place to share your ideas?  Well, Free From Broke is looking for talented writers for guest articles.
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Subscriber Swap Saturday – Interview With No Debt Plan

no-debt-plan

No Debt Plan is about getting and staying out of debt with a plan. Kevin, the author, is passionate about budgeting, saving for the future, and using goals to reach financial freedom. You can subscribe to his blog by RSS or email.

This interview is part of a new feature he’s developed called Subscriber Swap Saturday. The basic idea is to get the subscribers of one blog to subscribe to the other blog for at least a week, just to try it out. After a week if you don’t find that blogger’s content enticing, drop it. The hope is that over time you will find several writers that you weren’t familiar with who provide meaningful content to you. You can read more about Subscriber Swap Saturday at his get out of debt blog, as well as his interview with me

What’s No Debt Plan all about?

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50+ Personal Finance, Investing, And Money Tweeps Worth Following

These days, it’s all about Twitter and the tweeple there. While many (including my husband) see very little point to Twitter, there are, nonetheless, many twitterers that offer useful and interesting information — even if it is only a link to a well-written blog post. Twitter is full of people tweeting about finance-related subjects. It is impossible for me to include a totally comprehensive list of useful money tweeple, so I’m offering 50 of my tweeps for your consideration — and I’m barely scratching the surface.

Before I share my list of 50 tweeps — in no particular order — I’d like to share my Twitter account, and Bankling’s: @MMarquit, @bankling. If you aren’t on this list, add yourself. And share your favorite tweeps as well. We’d love to follow the people you’re following.

Investing Tweeps

If you want investing news and insight, following the right tweeple can provide you with updates, from the latest Dow reading, to real time forex quotes, to the latest happening in the world of gold. Here are a few of the investing tweeps that I follow:

  1. @TLI_Twitter provides regular investing news and updates. Tweets feature useful links to investing-related articles. Blog: Lucrative Investing.
  2. @TopProsTopPicks is more of a stock-picking kind of tweep. Articles on up-and-coming stocks, as well as news and analysis. This is the Twitter account associated with MoneyShow.com.
  3. @jeflin_sg provides in-depth investing commentary and opinion. Blogs at www.jeflin.net.
  4. @FalkinInvesting offers a good mix of investor education, commentary and news. His blog can be read at Stock Trading To Go.
  5. @penny_stocks, as you might imagine, provides tips on hot penny stocks. For those who are interested in the pink sheets and other low-cost investments. Watch out, though, these are risky investments that aren’t for everyone. Web site at www.thehotpennystocks.com.
  6. @tipd I’m rather fond of the folks at Tip’d (and not just because they put me on their “terrific” list). It’s like Digg for finance and investing people. A number of interesting and varied articles on a number of subjects.
  7. @valuestocks offers some interesting observations. I also like the way account holder Andrei looks to stimulate discussion about different investments.
  8. @forex_queen As you might imagine, forex_queen focuses on the currency market. A look at the latest forex trading news and information. Forex is risky, though; there’s a good chance you could lose a lot of money. She is associated with the Forex Profit Accelerator.
  9. @ETFtrends focuses mainly on the increasingly popular world of ETFs. This is the account associated wtih ETF Trends.

Personal Finance Tweeps

I’m a personal finance blog writer, mainly, so this was a very hard category for me to narrow down. Which is why it’s the biggest. However, there are dozens more high quality tweeps that I didn’t have room for.

  1. @jdroth represents the Twitter account of the wildly popular author of the Get Rich Slowly blog. He is known for his personal finance insight and practical, everyday solutions.
  2. @bargainr blogs at Bargaineering and offers a great deal of good financial information — including CD rates and schedules.
  3. @FMFblog provides personal finance tips and good information. Blog: Free Money Finance.
  4. @fcn is the guy behind Five Cent Nickel. He’s all about a slightly edgy look at personal finance. You can get his article feed at @fcnfeed.
  5. @SunFinancial is an electrical engineer who keeps The Sun’s Financial Financial Diary. Features a number useful links in most of his tweets.
  6. @thepassivedad concentrates mostly on ways to generate passive income. He’s a work from home dad blogging about his efforts at The Passive Dad.
  7. @pimpyourfinance offers helpful tips on a number of subjects — and keeps up with the latest financial shenanigans. Blog: www.pimpyourfinances.com.
  8. @holycap offers slightly irreverent, yet helpful information on good financial habits — as well as his Stop Buying Crap blog. You can stop buying crap! Cap can help.
  9. @CashMoneyLife has good, practical advice about money and preparing for the future. His blog, as you might guess, is Cash Money Life.
  10. @freefrombroke does a great job of retweeting what other personal finance and money bloggers are saying. It’s like another list of great tweeple to follow. Blog: Free From Broke.
  11. @Green_Panda focuses mainly on students. Great advice for college students (and the rest of us) on how to manage finances when first starting out. Blog: Green Panda Treehouse.
  12. @moneymanagement is the account for the Blogging for Change Web site. It’s a nonprofit aimed at helping others learn to manage money.
  13. @WideOpenWallet chronicles the real life adventures of a family trying to keep their personal finances in order. Some good thoughts and interesting tidbits. Blog: Wide Open Wallet.
  14. @flexo is the account for the Consumerism Commentary blog. Focus is on the consumer habits view of personal finances.
  15. @bigcajunman provides a look at finances from a Canadian perspective. Sometimes it’s good to see what’s going on in countries other than the U.S. Author of the Canadian Personal Finances Blog.
  16. @ThatOneCaveman provides real life anecdotes and helpful hints on reaching financial freedom. Blog: One Caveman’s Financial Journey.
  17. @mytwodollars is where I go when I want to know the latest outrage. While offering solid personal finance ideas and advice, My Two Dollars also keeps us up to date on all the outrageous money decisions being made by our leaders.

Credit/Debt Tweeps

Credit and debt issues are getting a lot of play right now, and there are plenty of tweeps who have helpful hints, tips and tricks for dealing with debt — and for improving your credit score.

  1. @NCN writes tweets that focus on debt reduction and staying out of debt. Blog: No Credit Needed.
  2. @debtkid is honest about his massive amounts of debt. Tweets — and his Debt Kid blog — keep followers updated on the progress being made, and provide encouragement for those trying to pay down their own debt.
  3. @paidtwice shares thoughts on getting out of credit card debt, and offers tips for dealing with credit card companies. Blog: www.paidtwice.com.
  4. @nodebtplan provides meaningful help on creating a plan to get out of debt and achieve financial freedom. Blogs at No Debt Plan.
  5. @masteryourcard is the Twitter account for the Master Your Card blog. All about responsible use of your credit card — and using it as a personal finance tool.
  6. @takingcharge shares the thoughts of the editor of CreditCards.com. It’s all about credit card issuer news, and tips for using credit wisely.
  7. @EADFL tweets about making a plan to get out of debt, and then stay there. Includes money making and money saving ideas. Blog: Engineer a debt free life.
  8. @debtblackhole is for the geek in me. A “financial mind meld” of sci-fi and escaping debt. Which is like a black hole. Blog: www.debtblackhole.com.

Christian Finance Tweeps

In the last couple of years, Christian Finance has emerged as its own financial category. It’s all about making sure your financial practices are right with God.

  1. @MoneyMatters puts finances into Biblical terms — and even relates what’s going on in the economy with scripture. Blog: Bible Money Matters.
  2. @ChristianPF is just what it sounds like. Twitter account for Christian Personal Finance.
  3. @glblguy looks at scripture for guidance. Shares tweets that sends followers to a range of sites and tweeple offering good information. Blog is Gather Little By Little. You know, like that scripture…
  4. @RichChristian is a “stewardship pastor” blogging at Rich Christian, Poor Christian. Shares a lot of links about money and the Christian way to get rich.
  5. @jameslparis is the editor in chief at ChristianMoney.com.
  6. @bfnJohn blogs at Borrow From None, another scriptural reference.

Money Saving/Frugal Living Tweeps

In this recession, you need all the money saving tips you can get. The economic turmoil has led to a renaissance in frugal living, and there are plenty of tweeple that can help you learn to live a good life on less.

  1. @CouponTweet Two words: Coupons! Deals!
  2. @CouponCravings More coupons! Retweets/replies to a lot of other thrifty types, providing even more useful people to follow. Blog: Coupon Cravings.
  3. @Lynnae blogs at Being Frugal. She is all about living a frugal lifestyle. And she’s one of Walmart’s Eleven Moms.
  4. @5DollarDinners offers rather helpful tips and recipes for keeping your food bill down. Blog: 5 Dollar Dinners.
  5. @mbhunter ofers insights and information on great bargains from around the Web. Blog: Mighty Bargain Hunter.
  6. @crystalpaine offers tips on cutting the weekly shopping bill and using coupons more effectively. Her blog is www.moneysavingmom.com.
  7. @frugalbabe is all about being frugal while living a mostly sustainable lifestyle. Intersperses frugality with helpful information on going organic. Blog at www.frugalbabe.com.

Tax Tweeps

Because it’s tax season, I offer you some tweeps that can keep you up to date on things like tax credits and deductions. With all the new stuff coming out, it’s nice to have someone who can help you keep up with these things.

  1. @taxfoundation monitors and shares fiscal policy as it relates to taxes. The Twitter account for the Tax Foundation.
  2. @taxgirl is sassy and smart, offering the tax insight of an actual lawyer. Blog: www.taxgirl.com.
  3. @taxtweet authors the Don’t Mess With Taxes blog and offers updates on the economy and tax policy.
  4. @jkharris is the CEO (and founder) of a tax representation company, JK Harris and Company. Has his finger on the pulse of tax trends.
  5. @taxbrain offers links to helpful tax information, education, calculators and more. Web site: www.taxbrain.com.
  6. @althetaxman is a financial and tax planner. Offers helpful tax prep tips and links to informative seminars.
  7. @ifileonline specializes in online filing information and tax software tips and recommendations.

There you have it! Follow my tweeps and learn more about the financial world around you!

Note from FFB: Check out the Free From Broke Guide to Twitter!

Who Do You Follow?

Miranda writes for Bankling, a personal finance portal, which contains both a blog, and a tools section that contains resources like the best bank CD rates, the best savings account rates, online mortgage rate calculators, and more.

Causes Of Poverty – Blog Action Day 2008

Homeless in Sugamo 2

To paraphrase Wikipedia, poverty is the deprivation of common necessities which determine the quality of life.  In our age of Nintendo Wii’s, online banking, flat-screen TV’s, and more, poverty is still a huge problem in our world.  Poverty affects about half of the world’s population.

Here are some of the main causes of poverty:

  • Demographic and social factors: Overpopulation; crime; cultural causes; war; discrimination.

About half of the world population suffers from poverty!

What can we do?

Kiva.org is an organization that provides micro-lending to the working poor.  In impoverished nations it’s very difficult to get loans.  Kiva helps by giving small loans so people can improve their livelihoods.

End Poverty 2015 Millennium Campaign – In 2000 189 world leaders made a promise to meet the eight-point development goals to help end poverty by 2015.  Check out the goals and what you can do to help achieve them.

This post is part of Blog Action Day 2008.  Blogs from all walks of life are getting together to discuss poverty and what can be done to end it.  Go check out the Blog Action Day site and the participating sites.

Poverty can be wiped out if we want it to.  It’s up to us to push that goal!

Creative Commons License photo credit: jamesfischer

Goals Are Great Motivators

Marathon de New York : Verrazano Bridge

Goals can be great motivators to help you achieve! I find that when I have a specific goal it’s much easier to focus on what I want to accomplish.  For example: For me to save money is one thing but when I have something specific to save for I find that I can save up much quicker.  When I was younger I wanted a new stereo (the hand-me-down I was given still had an 8-track in it).  I made a goal of saving up for a new stereo.  When I sacrificed some expense for savings I knew i was to help me get that stereo.  When I worked extra hours in the supermarket I knew it was for the stereo.  In no time I had enough to go out and buy a new stereo, equipped with not one but two tape decks! (Have I dated myself or what?)

Let me give you some other goals I’ve set for myself and accomplished:

Ran the NYC Marathon – In 2005 I decided I wanted to run the NYC Marathon.  I knew I needed time to train and run enough races (you have to run 9 NYC RoadRunner races for guaranteed entree).  In 2006 I mapped out what races I would run to qualify for the next year’s race.  It was tough to keep up but I ran and finished all nine races for entry.  In 2007 I started a training program to get me in shape for the marathon.  In June I started my longs runs every weekend to get me ready for the distance.  The first Sunday last November I woke up at the crack of dawn and hopped on the Staten Island ferry to get to the start of the marathon.  Later that afternoon I would be able to call myself a marathon runner.  I don’t think I ever would have run the distance without a specific goal of running the marathon.

Paid off my credit cards – Some years ago I finally got fed up with how much I was paying monthly in interest for my credit cards.  I resolved to pay them off.  It started slowly but bit by bit I started to gain ground.  After an incident that led me to move back with the ‘rents I was able to turbo charge my payments and finish off my credit card debt.  I haven’t had more than a month’s charges since then (I pay my cards off in full every month).  Without resolving to pay off my credit cards once and for all I would still be idling along with minimum payments and a ton of debt piling up.

Started a personal finance blog/site – In October of 2007 I had discovered blogging via Zen Habits then Get Rich Slowly.  I was already itching to find something productive to do with my time and had healthy interest in personal finance.  I set a goal of starting up my own blog and making it successful.  I’m still in the middle of this goal but I feel like what I’ve done so far has been a success, especially when I look back at my first month of original posts on my Blogger site.  Without my goal I might be surfing fantasy baseball sites instead of writing this article.

Build up our savings – My wife and I wanted to make sure we had enough in savings for any emergency and then some.  Rather than hope to put some money away with what was left over at the end of every month we calculated a specific amount we could afford to do without and set up our ING savings to automatically withdraw money from our checking every week.  We have since achieved our emergency savings goal and exceeded it.  If we didn’t create a specific plan our savings would be considerably less and we’d be scratching our heads wondering where our money went.

The lesson here is that I was motivated to accomplish different things because I set a goal to achieve!  Having a goal in mind keeps my mind focused.  Without a goal set I would have just floated along in many cases.  My savings would be lower, my credit card debt still existing, my running much less, this site just a thought…

One way to accomplish a goal is to make it SMARTSpecific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely. (Thanks to Cash Money Life for turning me onto that concept.)

I also like to think in terms of short and long term goals. For example – The goal of saving up for a down payment on a home, while an admirable goal, may seem a bit too big to ever accomplish.  That could be a long-term goal.  To make it more achievable you can create a short-term goal of saving X dollars a month towards a down payment.  This way you see your small goals achieved which helps build up the confidence to achieve your bigger goal.

Check out this article on the science of setting goals.  When you set a goal you are actively engaging your brain to help you with your goal!

What goals have you accomplished?  What are your current goals and how will you achieve them?

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photo credit: Martineric