After the TSP, I invest my money in Betterment and Vanguard. I track all of my investments with Personal Capital. I also wrote a short, 2 hour book summarizing this site. You can buy it here.
Update 12 October 2013: congratulations to Lisa M. for winning $50! The giveaway is now over, but stay tuned for another giveaway soon from MMM!
Military Money Manual has grown a lot in the past 18 months. There’s now over 60 articles on a variety of topics. I still have a lot to write about, especially the travel aspect of a military lifestyle. Andy is going to fill us in on VA loans and some of the financial products he has been trying as well. We’re going to expand our getting started section as well and begin organizing the site into three levels of personal finance: basic, intermediate, and advanced.
More importantly though, we’re giving away $50 to our readers! Why? Why not! It’s Oktoberfest over in Germany, so in the spirit of beer and friendship and celebrations, why not give away a bit of cash to our awesome readership. If you win, you can accept the cash via Paypal or a mailed $50 Visa gift card, up to you. The contest runs until midnight of October 10, 2013, so you have 21 days to tell your friends and get them to enter too!
You must be a US resident or citizen, but it’s okay if you’re living abroad or deployed. See the fine print for all the giveaway details.
How can you enter the giveaway? There are four ways to get in:
- Like MMM on Facebook. If you’ve already liked us on Facebook, you can still get points for liking us when you sign up for the giveaway! This gives you two entries.
- Follow us on Twitter. Again, two entries into the giveaway.
- Comment on a blog post. Pick one that you really liked and leave a great comment! You get 5 entries when you leave a comment that gets approved.
- Tweet about this awesome giveaway. You can do this one everyday of the giveaway! Every day you tweet about the giveaway, you get another entry. Just think how many entries you could accumulate over a 21 day period!
So that’s it! $50. For you. All you have to do is show us some social media love. Get out there and start liking, tweeting, and commenting! Good luck!
2 Websites I Use to Achieve Financial Independence Faster
I have investment accounts all over the place. To keep track of all of them in one place I use Personal Capital. It combines all of my accounts, shows me where I may be overpaying in fees, and provides beautiful charts showing my overall asset allocation and performance.
I use Personal Capital to track my Roth and Traditional TSP, Vanguard IRAs, banking accounts, SDP, and my Betterment taxable account, all in one place. It's free, secure and presents me with a one-stop dashboard so I can see all my money on one site.
Read my full review of Personal Capital and see how easy it can be to manage your investments in one place. Trust me, once you try it, you'll love it.
P.S. - If you have over $100,000 of assets and a 401k, you really need to run the Personal Capital 401k Fee Analyzer.
The best way I know to achieve financial independence is to keep your investments simple, diversified, automatic, and low-cost. Costs eat into your returns like you wouldn't believe! A 1% difference in expense ratios can mean $100,000s lost to fees over a lifetime of investing.
Even if you're a DIY (do-it-yourself) investor like I am, you need to check out Betterment. You can read my full review here, but the bottom line is for only $250 per $100,000 invested (0.25% expense ratio) you get simple, diversified, and automated investing. In addition every account now gets free Tax Loss Harvesting+ features, which should increase returns for the average investor more than the minuscule management fee.
If you're not a DIY investor or are just getting started with investing, then you definitely need to check out Betterment. It's what I recommend to my family and friends who aren't strong investors or don't care to learn about asset allocations, diversification, or rebalancing.