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9 Things That Helped Me Get in Control

September 21st, 2008 at 10:53 am

This contest is a perfect opportunity for me to capture some of the best resources that have helped me the most in recent months. Most of these are books or websites that have been key to me getting my financial situation in control.

1. The book "Your Money or Your Life" by Joe Dominguez. This was an eye-opener for my husband and I - that we could win the "money game" not by having a lot of money, but by not needing a lot of money.

2. The "Get Rich Slowly" blog. JD's writing style and learn-with-me attitude are refreshing, readable, and useful.

3. Quicken software, to download our transactions and find out exactly where our money goes each month.

4. The ETrade Canada website, where our extra cash is now earning 3% rather than 0%, and we've started buying corporate bonds.

5. The Canadian edition of the book "Smart Couples Finish Rich", by David Bach. This book filled in the gaps from the book mentioned above, helping us to figure out what our values as a couple are.

6. The Service Canada website, which goes through a detailed analysis and predicts how much income you'll get once retired. This helps cut through the confusion around OAS, CPP, RRSP income, and pension income to come up with a full scenario.

7. A variable-rate mortgage with larger-than-necessary weekly payments. At the current rate of 4.25%, the bulk of the money we pay every week goes to the principal, rather than interest. We'll have it paid off in 53 months.

8. The website CalendarBudget. I put in our regular recurring expenses at the beginning, and I adjust them as I go along. It tells me what our cash flow situation is every day into the future, helping me plan expenditures and letting me know when there's a little extra to siphon off into our high-interest account before it gets spent.

9. The book "In Your Best Interest", by Hank Cunningham. Finally bonds made sense to me, and we have started buying corporate bonds on the ETrade site to fund our early retirement (up to age 65 when our pensions kick in).

1 Responses to “9 Things That Helped Me Get in Control”

  1. Brenda Says:

    Thanks for the references Kirsten. Being also a Canadian, it's nice to read your posts.

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