We Got Turned Down for a Credit Card… Ok, Four!

We Got Turned Down for a Credit Card… Ok, Four!

Yeah, getting turned down for a credit card isn’t a good feeling. It doesn’t matter that Lisa and I each have credit scores of over 800.  It doesn’t matter that we have plenty of credit cards already and don’t really need another. We also have more of an unused credit line spanned across all our cards than we’ll never need.  And then, of course, there’s that little piece of info that we’ve saved up enough money that we never have to work again – we’d be very low-risk to default. But it doesn’t matter. It still sucks when you get turned down for a credit card.  When the online application screen changes and tells you’ve been declined, it’s a small

How and Why We Changed Our State of Domicile

How and Why We Changed Our State of Domicile

One of the things we did before we headed to Panama was to change our state of domicile. If you’re not familiar with the term, your state of domicile refers to your principal place of residence.  If you leave for a while, it’s what can be thought of as the place you would return to afterward. In other words, it might be considered your “home base” in the U.S. – your permanent place of residence. For snowbirds that head from Ohio to places like Florida during the winter, their home in Ohio would more than likely be their state of domicile.  It’s also the state you’ll be taxed in for any income earned (though other states you reside it might

What the FIRE Movement Means to Me

What the FIRE Movement Means to Me

I recently came across a question in the FinCon Community Facebook Group relating to the FIRE movement (financial independence / retire early).  It was asked by Jeff Rose, creator of the Good Financial Cents site. If you’re not a member of the FinCon Facebook group, you likely won’t be able to access this link.  However, the question asked was “Who disagrees with the FIRE movement and why?” The post drew quite a number of comments that spanned all sorts of opinions and it made for some interesting reading.  Some comments I nodded my head to while others I disagreed with. Regardless, it got me thinking about my own path in life.  FIRE was a very important component of my life

Uh-Oh… Our Retirement Expenses Are Higher than Expected

Uh-Oh… Our Retirement Expenses Are Higher than Expected

Retirement expenses are a tough one to plan for in life. You can budget for what you think your expenses will be, but you really don’t know if they’ll be more or less.  The biggest reason is that your life will likely be dramatically different at the time. This is probably even more on par the younger you are when you leave the workforce because you’re likely not going to be resting on your laurels.  Not only would you be trying your hand at all sorts of projects (some that cost money or transportation), but there’s a lot more time for changes to occur. And by changes, I mean that you have a longer amount of time for your likes

The What-Ifs of Moving to a Different Country

The What-Ifs of Moving to a Different Country

Recently, my friend Lisa from the Mad Money Monster blog wrote about the “what ifs” on moving to a different country.  It was appropriately titled The What Ifs of International Geoarbitrage And Early Retirement. There’s a lot of talk on the Internet, particularly in the personal finance community, about the idea of geoarbitrage.  That’s the strategy of moving to another location, domestic or abroad, to take advantage of the lower cost-of-living and move ahead financially or possibly retire early. It was a great post!  I love it because it raises a lot of questions that many people are thinking when they even consider geoarbitrage.  And she wasn’t trying to say whether or not moving to a different country is good

The Biggest Secret the Library Offers to Enrich Your Life

The Biggest Secret the Library Offers to Enrich Your Life

Oh, the times they are a-changin’.  I don’t think Bob Dylan was talking about the library in his early ’60s song, but boy oh boy, libraries are much different than they were when I was a kid. Of course, you have the obvious stuff like digital card catalogs and the ability to use the computers if you need Internet access.  Heck, I even used them over the past year during those unusual times I needed to print something (I haven’t owned a printer in probably 15 years). Today, I’m excited to talk about one of the biggest secrets the library offers.  It might not be a secret to everyone, but I had no idea about it!  It’s something that can