It’s that time of year again: people are looking at conference dates and their travel budgets. They’re wondering why in the world anyone would want to spend hundreds of dollars to talk about financial independence. Well, let's take a look. Why I Go to FinCon I'm frequently asked why I go to FinCon and whether it's worth the money. What's the … [Read more...] about FinCon – The Financial Media Conference – How a Small Investment Can Return Dividends
[September 2020 update: We have a new answer on this question! Financially, you'll get the biggest pension boost from retiring on 1 March of your chosen year. See the end of this post to download Douglas Fowler's research paper and review the math. You'll still have to pick the best date for your family, your bridge career, your travel plans, … [Read more...] about How Much Is The COLA On My Military Pension?!?
I get many questions about USAA’s services & products. After six years of their financial conferences and dozens of interrogations interviews of their executives, I think I’ve learned enough about their business model (and the insurance industry) to help you navigate your choices. My spouse and I have been USAA members since 1981, and now our … [Read more...] about The Big Picture On Insurance: USAA’s Annual Reports
[This post is brought to you by Patrick Weinert, who's making an encore appearance. You can find his previous post in the "Related articles" section at the bottom. If you're interested in contributing at The-Military-Guide.com, please see our posting guidelines.] When I was first introduced to the world of aviation, I was both excited and … [Read more...] about Get Help With Your Tax Returns!
[This post is brought to you by David Pere of the site "From Money To Millionaire", and he's another enthusiastic surfer! We've paddled out at Oahu's White Plains Beach a few times. If you're interested in contributing at The-Military-Guide.com, please see our posting guidelines .] The Beginning (Bio) I grew up in the Midwest, the son of an … [Read more...] about Our Story: How to Avoid the Pitfalls of Financial Ruin and live Happily Ever After!
Over three years ago, I suggested that buying a home on active duty is setting yourself up for financial failure. That post has aged exceptionally well, and now it’s time to double down. Don’t buy a home when you leave active duty, either. You’re setting yourself up for more financial failure and a heartache with mortgage … [Read more...] about Don’t Buy A Home When You Leave Active Duty
This post gets personal. Let me give you the permission to think about these questions in your own career. A reader writes: I'm active duty and coming up on year #9 this May. I have owned your book for a few years and dig into the blog content on occasion. Love it! My question has to do specifically with one of the closing paragraphs in your … [Read more...] about Don’t Gut It Out To 20: Leave Active Duty For The Reserves Or National Guard
[This post is brought to you by Stephanie Montague of Poppin' Smoke, where you can learn more about your military travel benefits and opportunities. If you're interested in contributing at The-Military-Guide.com, please see our posting guidelines!] Living in Washington, DC, my husband and I saw it all the time: military veterans who … [Read more...] about A GI Bill Is A Terrible Thing To Waste
[This post is brought to you by Dan, who’s done a lot of data runs with the BRS calculator. His new website KeepInvestingSimpleStupid.com is freshly launched, so please check on its progress! If you’re interested in contributing at The-Military-Guide.com, then see our posting guidelines.] Welcome to January 2018! The opt-in period to the … [Read more...] about How to Maximize the BRS If You Decide to Opt-In
A reader asks: I'm in the National Guard. I'll be deployed for about 45 days into a combat zone. I'm signing up for the BRS and I'm contributing my 5% in order to get the DoD's 5% match. I'm employed in the civilian world by a corporation that contributes 6% of gross pay into my 401(k). I can also make 415(c) after-tax contributions to my 401(k) … [Read more...] about Thrift Savings Plan Contributions In A Combat Zone With The Blended Retirement System