What Broke Professionals Is Reading: January 30th Through February 5, 2011

by Broke Professional on February 5, 2011 · 3 comments

Every Saturday here at BrokeProfessionals.com, my wife and I make a list of our 8 favorite posts of the past week. We also pick our favorite post of the week.

Broke Professionals Post of the Week:

1. Len Penzo.comIt’s not Magic: You too Can Barter Your Way from a Paperclip to a House – Although I (as most of you probably have) was already aware of the story of the young man who traded and traded on Craig’s List until he ultimately got a house (he started with a red paperclip), I really enjoyed this retelling of the story.  It is written with humor and draws some lessons from the story, all the while providing an in-depth review of how such a crazy thing could occur.  Awesome read.

Personal Finance Blogs: the Best of the Rest (In no Particular Order)

2.  Punch Debt in the FaceNo Spend Challenges are for Wussies – Sure here at Broke Professionals we are currently documenting our “only eating food already in our apartment for a month” challenge, and yes when I first read this post my initial reaction was to be slightly defensive…..but then I read it again.  And I laughed.  Now I’m recommending it because yeah it is a little ridiculous to have a “no spend” month.  For example, last night we went to a wedding and Sunday we go to a Super Bowl Party.  We will (or already did) eat some food outside our apartment during these events.  To do otherwise would just be silly.  And then the “Debt Ninja” might have to “judo chop my face.”

3.  The Millionaire Nurse Blog – Ruin Your Children: Everyone Else Does It – This article is clearly written from a parent’s point of view regarding young adult children.  As a 27 year old married professional who no longer receives help from our parents, I can agree that the best thing we ever did (for our own finances, four our relationships with our parents, and for our parent’s finances as well, I’m sure) was to “cut the chord”, so to speak.  We grew up with helicopter parents who continued to hover for too long into our own adulthoods.  The trade off was we took their financial assistance.  What the Book the Millionaire Next Door refers to as: “Affirmative Action: Family Style.”

Although I find part of the article slightly biased in its point of view (as every article ever written is if we’re going to be honest)-  as not every twenty something wastes all of their money; we also have more sizable student loans than previous generations and in case you haven’t noticed a poor economy to be starting out in, more competition if you’re educated, etc; I still thought it was a really interesting read that I think both parents of adults and the so-called “adults” themselves can benefit from reading.

4. Budgeting in the Fun Stuff5 Tips for Selling on CraigsList – This is a really good concisely written article for those who are interested in selling on Craig’s List or upping their success at selling items on Craig’s List.

5. Money Mamba – Why You Earn 90% Less Than You Think – I really liked this article because it provides a different way to think about your finances.  The article states that you should consider what you earn based upon the revenue (savings) rather than the actual amount, so as to avoid stupid purchases.  Very cool way to think about it, and something I will be keeping in mind moving forward.

6. EveryDay Tips and Thoughts – Tips for Saving for Vacation and Minimizing Vacation CostsEvery new winter storm here in the northeast makes me long for a hot summer vacation spot all the more.  Although we have debt to the point that traveling anywhere may border on the unconscionable, this great blog by Everyday Tips points out that a vacation to a great locale doesn’t always have to break the bank.  My favorite tip: Buy a book (like Fromer’s) on the location you will be visiting.  I know this was a great investment for our trip to Paris as we avoided over-expensive “tourist traps” and were able to see a lot of what Paris had to offer in just one week.

7. Money Cone/ and the Saved Quarter – the money pit) – Never Pay Full PriceEnjoy the benefits of a 2-1 brought about by a very awesome blog swap on these two great articles.

8. Man v. Debt – An Idiot’s Guide to Living with 417 Things – Loved this overview of what the site refers to as “Conscious Consumerism” (not sure who originally coined that term).  I related with the entries point that it is not about being mainstream or “minimalist” it is about trying to take back control of your life and to declutter.  It is something we always work on, and have since our trip to Paris where we first thought about how we had too much “Stuff” (crap).   We never even knew there was a movement gaining traction but we are of course glad there is, as in our opinion it is a good practice and good for your wallet as well.

Tomorrow We Look in at how our “month without buying new food” is progressing and we have a lot of great new content planned for next week, so please keep coming back!

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Dr Dean February 5, 2011 at 2:21 pm

Thanks for including my article about young people and money. Yes I am biased, as a father of two grown kids, 26 & 28. I speak from both experience and maturity you can only gain by living 50+ years!

It is especially tough to be on your own with huge student debt. And I challenge the conventional wisdom that you “have” to have huge student debt in this economy. It may take you longer to work your way through school, and minimize your borrowing, but it will pay huge dividends in the long haul….(pun intended!).

Again thanks for including me, and look forward to reading more here!


2 Mr. Broke Professional February 5, 2011 at 2:28 pm

Dr. Dean,

I really found the article fascinating and I agree with your points, particularly your point that you do not need to leave college with a ton of student loan debt. I actually just posted on that subject the other day using myself as an example of what not to do. At the same time, I worked during law school, I lived a relatively frugal lifestyle, yet I still left college/law school as a young attorney with $140,000.00 in student loan debt. My wife had $40,000.00 in student loans as well from college and graduate school. For 14 years of combined education I am not sure how much better we could have done, unless I had gone to a tier 3 or 4 law school with a full ride, in which case I may not now have a job. Anyway, really enjoyed your article and I agree that the sooner people (of all ages) take accountability for their own financial mistakes and their own finances, the better off they will be.


3 The Saved Quarter February 5, 2011 at 11:58 pm

Thanks for including me and MoneyCone in your round up! The blog swaps have been a great way to see new blogs and introduce new readers to other Yakezie members, and I’m glad you enjoyed our posts.


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