Earn More, Spend Less: Volume 1

Michael Lux Blog, Spend Less 2 Comments

Today I am happy to unveil a brand new feature to the Student Loan Sherpa.  The goal of Earn More, Spend Less should be pretty obvious… anything that you can do to up your income or lower your expenses gets you one step closer to having your student loans paid off.

Each week bloggers will be able to submit their best work on the subjects of earning more and spending less.  They will submit their article and a brief summary.  I will review each article and rate it according to the following scale:

5 Stars – Amazing Writing!  This rating will be reserved for the articles that are truly impressive and an absolute must read.

4 Stars – Great Insight.  If someone offers an idea or analysis that is truly helpful and worth passing on it will get four stars.  Entertainment value and creativity can push a 3 start article up to the 4 star range.

3 Stars – Good Stuff.  These articles may not be particularly ground breaking, but they have solid information and may cover a subject of some value.

0, 1, or 2 Stars – The Rest.  I’m not going to waste your time with this stuff.  If I don’t think an article will help you earn more money or spend less, I will not put it here.

If you have written an article that will help people earn more money or spend less, submit it here.


MMD @ My Money Design writes Recognizing Opportunities to Build Multiple Streams of Income – Ever since I’ve started reading about how people find different ways to build multiple streams of income, I find myself becoming more aware of them as I recognize them in even the tiniest things throughout my everyday life. Here are my thoughts on what we can do to try to achieve the same.

The Student Loan Sherpa Review –  This advice is fantastic for any 20 or 30 something who hopes to ever retire.  The days of a great company pension are long gone, social security may not survive, and we only have so much money to put in our 401(k)s… MMD has great examples of how people have built multiple income streams for themselves.  4 STARS

Jon @ Novel Investor writes Traditional IRA Rules: Everything You Need To Know – Everything you need to know about the traditional IRA rules (and probably some stuff you don’t) so your retirement plan goes off without a hitch.

The Student Loan Sherpa Review –  This article does a great job covering the nitty gritty of IRAs.  It covers everything from deadlines, to contribution limits, to fine print.  When it comes to understanding fine print with the law or financial institutions it really pays to have a good grasp of the basics.  Jon does a great job covering many issues.  3.5 STARS

Anton Ivanov @ Dreams Cash True writes Portfolio Planning Basics – Choosing Investments – A detailed look at choosing investments for your portfolio. I discuss why index funds are your best option and how to pick the best ones.

The Student Loan Sherpa Review –  This post has great information for anyone looking for advice on how they should be investing their money.  The article is definitely on the more technical side, but it is valuable info for anyone with portfolio questions.  3.5 STARS


Lazy Man @ Lazy Man and Money writes Saving Money with Cloth Diapers? – When we were preparing for our first born, nothing drew a bigger reaction than saying that we were going with cloth diapers. My friends from New England claimed that we had gotten too much San Francisco in our blood. Nonetheless, our my wife’s research showed that they were not only great for the environment, but better for the baby. That became very important for us.

The Student Loan Sherpa Review –  This should be an interesting read for parents of young children or parents to be.  It is a bit of a “messy” article but the analysis seems to be pretty good.  3 STARS

Little House @ Little House in the Valley writes What’s a Decent Price Per Square Foot? – Property prices have soared in the City of Angels with an average year-over-year increase of 40%. It’s the housing boom all over again and I feel like I missed out….again. Crap.

The Student Loan Sherpa Review –  If a house purchase is in your future, this article might be a good read.  It has some good information of price per square feet and some honest thoughts on trying to “time” the market.  3 STARS

Joshua Rodriguez @ http://cnafinance.com writes How To Make A Budgeting Spreadsheet That Makes Budgeting Fun – This post is a very detailed tutorial that walks people through the process of creating a budget spreadsheet. In this post, Joshua Rodriguez talks about the need for a budget spreadsheet that works for him and builds one taking screenshots step by step so it’s easy for others to repeat the process!

The Student Loan Sherpa Review –  Joshua gets real ambitious when he tries to combine budgeting with excel spreadsheets and create fun.  Reading the article won’t exactly make your Friday night, but if you haven’t yet set up your budget, it is a solid guide.  3.5 STARS

Matt Becker @ Mom and Dad Money writes Buying a Car: Setting a Budget and a Timeline – This is the first in a 6-part series on buying a car. Today we talk about setting a budget and a timeline for your purchase, both of which set up a framework that focuses your decision-making process and will help you make a better final choice.

The Student Loan Sherpa Review –  Matt does a great job of breaking down the car buying process in this article.  The last thing you want to do is decide that you need a new car and head off to the dealership.  Figuring out your budget and a timeline is a must for any car buyer.  4 STARS

KK @ Student Debt Survivor writes Budgeting for 4 Eyes – Today, glasses are a fun fashion statement. When I was in middle school, not so much. Keep your eyeglasses fun and frugal with these eye care budgeting tips.

The Student Loan Sherpa Review –  As someone who really needs to update his glasses, this article could not have come at a better time.  It has some genuinely creative tips for saving money on glasses.  If you spend money on glasses or contacts, this is a must read.  4.5 STARS

Grayson @ Debt Roundup writes Credit Cards Are Only Tools In Your Financial Toolbox – How many times do you use the tools in your toolbox? Do you feel good when you use your tool the right way and it achieves a positive outcome? I know I do. Today, I am talking about using your credit card just as it is supposed to be used, a tool in your financial toolbox.

The Student Loan Sherpa Review –  In this video Grayson discusses how to use credit cards to your advantage.  Often credit cards are dismissed as being evil and a waste of money, but if you are smart it can save you some cash.  3.5 STARS

John S @ Frugal Rules writes Cancel Your Cable, Save Thousands and Become More Productive – Spending money on cable television can often cost you over $100 per month and can add up quickly. If you’re looking to cut costs, save money and become more productive then cutting the cord can be a great option to look at.

The Student Loan Sherpa Review –  This article isn’t earth shattering, but it is a good reminder: Cable is expensive and it is not a necessity.  3 STARS

Christopher @ This That and The MBA writes Save Money on Expenses for Pets – Pets are already considered as part of the family and for people who are living alone or away from their families, pets are even considered as companions. For years now, pets, especially cats and dogs, have been living in thousands of households all over the world and are being valued.

The Student Loan Sherpa Review –  As a pet owner there is nothing novel here, but I do love the emphasis on adopting pets.  It saves money and it saves lives.  Puppy mills and the pet stores that support them need to be put out of business.  3 STARS

Mr FD @ Financial Debauchery writes You Don’t Have Any Emergency Money? How Dare You! – You wouldn’t jump out of an airplane without a parachute, would you? They why do you go day-to-day without a stock pile of emergency money to take care of a disaster if one arises? Here are some tips for manning up and being prepared financially!

The Student Loan Sherpa Review –  This article is a great kick in the pants for anyone who doesn’t have a rainy day fund or nest egg.  Unless your crystal ball is working perfectly, an emergency fund is a great idea.  4 STARS