Monthly Archives: August 2013

Why You Should Max Out a Roth IRA Before You’re 30

IRA

This is you giving money to your future self.

Financial security ranks in my top three for long-term happiness (the other two are personal relationships and health).  Simply put, it’s hard to enjoy life if you are constantly worrying about how to make ends meet.

To that end, this post is about an easy way that you can give your future self a small financial security blanket (see what I did there… SECURITY blanket… like stocks and bonds… I know I’m terrible).

There are a million posts on a million blogs about why you should be saving for retirement.  And just FYI, they’re all right.  You SHOULD be saving for retirement unless you’re already retired (or have a ton of bad debt).

In this post I’ll point out the hypothetical future gains of maxing out a Roth IRA just once before you turn 30.  Since the max annual contribution in 2013 is $5500 if you’re under 50, that’s the number I’ll be using today.

I decided to go with a Roth in this example because it makes the gains simpler to wrap your head around.  You don’t have to figure out how much it will be post-tax because it’s already post-tax.

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Stir-Friday! Perfect Homemade Hummus (Sabra clone)

Mmmm… hummus

It’s that time again.  It’s Stir-Friday! For the complete list of this series click here.  The main idea is that making delicious food makes me happy, so I like to share good recipes with you.

OK guys, I don’t normally throw around the word `perfect’ when it comes to recipes, so you know this recipe is super-legit.  As always, I list the starting point of my recipes at the end of the article, but this recipe comes from the Bible of cookbooks… The Cook’s Illustrated Cookbook.  Literally every recipe I’ve tried from this cookbook has turned out well, so I just wanted to let you know the starting point up front.

My favorite brand of store-bought hummus is Sabra (whose isn’t?), so I was basically looking to create a clone recipe for their classic hummus.  The Cook’s Illustrated recipe was a great starting point, but it used 6 tbsp (!) of tahini.  Tahini is not cheap, so I wanted to cut this back a bit.  Also, the flavor of the CI recipe, while awesome, wasn’t quite what I wanted. As a side note, I’m going to be making homemade tahini soon… I’ll let you know how it goes.

So, long story short, I’ve made about 13 batches of hummus in the last four weeks trying to get the recipe just right.  Below are the fruits of my labor:

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What I did with $4000

Dolla' dolla' billz, y'all

Dolla’ dolla’ billz, y’all

I recently came into $4000.  As someone who is relatively young (and relatively broke), I thought you might be interested to know what I did with the money.  Did I buy some new gadgets? Hit the casino? New clothes? Pay off debts?  Sock it away?  Before we get to the answer, I should probably first explain where the money came from.

A few weeks ago I was helping a friend move.  He had all his stuff in a storage unit, so several of us just met him over there to help him load the stuff into a 17 foot uhaul.  We got done loading the truck and pulled around to the entrance so he could turn in the keys to his unit.

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