The true cost of smoking

Intro: Everyone knows that cigarettes are bad.  I’m not here to sound that alarm again.  This post is about the true costs of smoking, including not only the hard cash spent on a pack of cigarettes, but also the subsequent health-related costs and shortened life expectancy. Based on data from the American Cancer Society, I […]

Location arbitrage: living abroad to save money

Abstract: Living abroad in countries like Ecuador or Thailand can save the average American serious money (and serious working time).  Specifically, living in an inexpensive country abroad for 10 years saves nearly $225,000 versus living in the U.S., and even more than that for big spenders.  As more and more people transition to location independent careers, […]

Used cars save $15,000 per decade versus buying new

Intro: This is the third and final post on buying a car.  The first post showed that buying a mid-size sedan instead of a SUV can save $25,000 over 10 years.  The next post showed that buying an economy car saves nearly $50,000 per decade versus buying an entry-level luxury car.  And now this post […]

Luxury cars: cars for people who like to work

Intro: Guess what… buying an economy car saves a ton of money versus buying a luxury car.  But just how much does an expensive status symbol fancy car really cost? By my estimates, buying a new Honda Accord will save almost $50,000 over 10 years rather than buying a new Acura TL.  And these are just […]

How much does a smaller car actually save you?

Abstract: Buying a Honda Accord Sedan instead of a Honda Pilot SUV saves roughly $25,000 over 10 years.  But both cars are still going to cost a whole lot when all operating and ownership expenses are included (close to $100,000 per decade). Intro: Ever wondered how much money a smaller car actually saves?  Maybe not, but you’re […]

The ROI of a non-traditional wedding

Intro: I’m going to keep this real short.  How much would having a non-traditional wedding save the average American couple?  Answer: At least $30,000. Anybody that has ever seriously thought about getting married has probably weighed the pro’s and con’s of some sort of non-traditional celebration, such as eloping, going to the courthouse, having a small intimate ceremony, […]

Building vs. buying a home

Abstract: Buying an existing 1,000-square-foot home saves $17,500 over the first ten years of ownership compared to building a new one. Intro: I’ve often wondered: would the energy and maintenance savings on a new home be worth the added construction costs versus buying an existing house?  Financially speaking, the answer turns out to be no. […]