[-$35,638] Easing into the End of Year and Happy Singles Day

Easing into the End of the Year

In my Packing for Guilt Trips post, I wrote about my dread of dealing with family turmoil this year because I wouldn’t be going home for the holidays. So eventually the conversation came up. I let them know I wasn’t flying back and…

…they were ok with it. Holy Hell. I was not expecting that reaction based on our earlier conversations. I was braced for push back, as I have dealt with it from them for many years past. It seems I gave them too little credit this time. I guess they realized that I have already been traveling a lot this year to spend time with them. If they had problems with my not going back for the holidays, they haven’t voiced any to me, at least not yet anyway.

So far, so good, but we’ll see.    Read More

Student Loan News: Earnest Dies and Navient Takes Over Its Lifeless Body

‘Edgar’, Men in Black movie

Earnest Dies and Navient Takes Over Its Lifeless Body (repost)

One year ago, back in October of 2017, I wrote this post about Navient buying then student loan darling, Earnest. I mentioned the lawsuit against Navient, and borrowers likely concerns, as well as the founder-CEO’s impassioned plea to calm nerves and stem a possible mass exodus of customers. Borrowers were assured that Earnest would remain independent and that they would continue to be taken care of like they always had been.

Turns out the borrower concerns were well justified. One year later, that impassioned CEO, has collected a big payout check and left the company. Navient has installed new leadership and control.     Read More

What’s the News? Financial Headlines this Week

A few financial headlines caught my attention this week. Some good, others… not so much. So here they are; the good, the bad, the ugly, and the WTF?.

Good News: Retirement Savings Contributions Will Increase in 2019

It’s finally official that 401(k) employee contribution limits will rise to $19,000 in 2019. (Source: IRS)

If you are someone fortunate enough to have access to a 401(k), let alone be able to max it out, enjoy the extra $500 next year. Don’t forget to adjust your withholding settings in January.

Not to be left behind, IRAs and Roth IRAs contribution limit will increase from $5,500/year to $6,000/year(Source: IRS)

People who max this tax advantaged space every year (I hope to be one next year), are excited about making round, even $500 monthly (or $250 semi-monthly) payments instead of the odd $458.33 monthly (or $229.16 semi-monthly) payments. Yeah, this is actually a thing that people geek out on.      Read More

[-$37,300] 3 Ways to Go – A Halloween Inspired Post

 

As a single person do you ever think about what will happen to you after you’re gone? To your body, that is.

I have no significant other or children and it’s quite possible, if not very likely, that I’ll never have either, thus I’ll have less of a tie to any particular location for burial. So maybe (many, many decades from now) I’ll be laid to rest near other family members in the local cemetery back home, if there is still room by then, and if there are any younger extended family around who care to help arrange it.

But then again, maybe the standard burial plot isn’t for me. What might it be like to have a different experience? Over the past several months, I randomly came across three very interesting types of memorial services and thought it would be cool to bring them together in a post. With Halloween here, now seems like a good time. Read More

[-$38,300] Packing for Guilt Trips: Dealing with Debt and Family Expectations

 

It’s that time of year again, so yes, this post will be served extra ranty and with a large glass of whine.

This issue comes up for me every year, especially around the holiday season, but I’m also wondering how people deal year-round with having debt and pressure to meet family home-visit expectations.

When I was first starting out on my debt repayment journey, it was common for me to go home for the holidays once every other year. It was always a struggle to have that conversation and it came with guilt trips, of course, about my not visiting enough. Cross-country (coast to coast) plane tickets are expensive on a typical day. They become outrageously expensive ($1000+) around the holidays. My family never seems to care much about that.     Read More