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Erik Folgate
Erik and his wife, Lindzee, live in Orlando, Florida with a baby boy on the way. Erik works as an account manager for a marketing company, and considers counseling friends, family and the readers of Money Crashers his personal ministry to others. Erik became passionate about personal finance and helping others make wise financial decisions after racking up over $20k in credit card and student loan debt within the first two years of college.

Refurbished Mac Computers And Laptops Can Save You A Ton Of Money

By Erik Folgate


Last week, I finally took the plunge and switched my alliances with PC and Windows and switched to Apple. I bought a 21.5″ Apple iMac with 4GB of RAM, 500GB hard drive, ATI Radeon HD 4670 graphics card with 256MB memory, and a 3.06GHZ Dual Core Intel processor. I should just move to San Francisco and start wearing black turtlenecks, because I will never go back to the days of Dell and Microsoft. It’s been 4 days since I first started using it, and I love it. My ability to quickly create screen casts, web videos, manipulate and edit photos, and work in several different programs all at once has vastly improved. I don’t know what it is about the Mac OS or the programs designed for Macs, but they load and run SO much quicker than Windows and Windows-based programs. For example, Firefox opens instantly, whereas, even in Windows 7, Firefox hesitates to open for about 10 seconds. Ever since I bought an iPhone about a year and a half ago, I’ve had the itch to switch my computers to Apple, but the price tag had always deterred me from making the switch. I never thought I’d be able to spend less than $1,700 to $1,800 for what I wanted, but I ended up getting this iMac for $999, which was exactly my threshold for what I was willing to spend. How did I do it? Read below:

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Becoming Wealthy Is Like Becoming An Olympic Athlete

By Erik Folgate


The Winter Olympics started last Friday, and I am not too intrigued by most of the sports included in the Winter Olympics, but I do love the women’s figure skating, downhill skiing, snowboarding, and the bobsled competitions. As I was watching the Olympics the other night, I gained more appreciation for the athletes the more that I thought about the training it took for them to reach this poing of being one of the best in the world in their respective sport. Then, I started thinking about how all of the principles of an Olympic athlete correlate to the financial principles that help people build wealth. Passion, Perseverance, and Discipline are three attributes of an Olympic athlete that we must all possess if we want to win with money.

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The Worst Financial Advice I’ve Ever Seen From a Major Publication

By Erik Folgate

credit card mortgages bankingToday, one of our writers came across an article that made me want to throw up just from reading the title: Forget the Mortgage, I’m Paying My Credit Card Bill. Oh man, where do I start? I honestly feel bad for the people that write this crap and for the people that they interview, because they really have no idea how much damage their advice is doing to the American people. I thought the title was a joke at first. I thought the article would make a case for paying your credit card first, then go back to reality about how paying your mortgage and keeping a roof over your head should be the first priority. But, that never happened!

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Only You Can Create New Jobs For This Country

By Erik Folgate

If you’ve been following the financial news today, then you saw articles like this one from Yahoo Finance about the unemployment rate falling to 9.7%, which is a five-month low. That sounds like good news, and it could be, but when you look deeper into the numbers and throw some logic into the equation, it doesn’t make sense that the unemployment rate would fall that much. Does this mean the numbers are cooked? Are we on the road to recovery for job loss? I really hope so, because it’s the single most glaring eye sore to our economy right now. It’s the one road block that will keep our economy from heading in the right direction. Here’s a quote from the article I referenced above.

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25 Online Resources For Freelancers and Small Businesses

By Erik Folgate

tool box for small business and freelancersLast week I revealed to you how my best friend and I started a side business doing internet marketing for small businesses and one reason for our success was that we found clients before we set up the business. Now that we have some clients, we need to look a little more legit, so we started shopping around for some online resources to help us get more organized as a business. Doing freelance work and/or starting a side business is one of the best ways to earn extra money to help you pay off debt, save for retirement, save for kid’s college, or save up for a large purchase. You should focus on seeking out clients first, and then set up business processes. When that time comes, here are 25 online resources to check out when setting up your business.

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Personal Finance Round-Up: How Does The IRS Pick Tax Returns To Audit?

By Money Crashers

It’s that time again to take a look at our personal finance blogging friends, and see what they’re writing.  Seriously, we have the best blogging community on the web.  If that’s not evident by now, then something is wrong.  Here are some of the best of the best articles from this past week:

How Does the IRS Pick Tax Returns To Audit? Ever wonder how the IRS chooses who to audit and who not to audit?  They do have a method behind their madness, so read this to figure out ways to stay off their radar for an audit from Bargaineering.com.

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$499 iPad Is First Affordable Computing Device By Apple For Average User

By Erik Folgate

If you were following Twitter, Facebook, or any tech blogs today, then you know that the Apple event surrounding the announcement of the Apple iPad (insert feminine hygiene joke here) dominated today’s news, and it will surely dominate tech news for the rest of the week. I followed along with sites such as Gizmodo and Cult of Mac for their live blogging of the event, and I must say that while the iPad is pretty darn impressive, it is lacking in some areas (but then again I am a tech nerd). I have stronger opinions about technology devices than the average user. One piece of news that did REALLY impress me was the price of the iPad:

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How To Stay Safe And Avoid Getting Ripped Off On Craigslist

By Erik Folgate

I was listening to the Clark Howard radio show today, and a guy was asking Clark if he should buy a car on Craigslist without ever seeing it. He said he was tempted, because the car was “such a good deal” and way below market value. As most of you probably know, this is immediately a red flag for a scam on Craigslist, but some people just don’t take the time to understand what they are doing. Here are some tips to help you never get scammed on Craigslist.

If It Sounds Too Good To Be True, It Probably Is

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How I Started A Side Business For Extra Income

By Erik Folgate

I’ve been working on blogs, Facebooking, Tweeting, Linking In, and YouTubing for almost 5 years now. I started writing for this blog in 2006 with a vision about turning a passion of mine, personal finance, into a blog where I could share my thoughts and experiences about personal finance. Four years later, personal finance is one of the hottest blogging communities on the web, and Money Crashers is poised to have its best year yet as a personal finance blog. I still make a nice little side income from writing for Money Crashers, but while I was learning about blogs and social networks, I developed a strong set of skills about how to market a business on social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube. I also started learning about the power of having an updated company blog and link building strategies to optimize search engine rankings for company websites, and that was the beginning of a career transition and the start of my side business.

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An Overall View Of Dave Ramsey’s Steps to Financial Success

By Erik Folgate

Love him or hate him, Dave Ramsey gives great common sense advice about how to get out of debt and build wealth.  People that hate him often don’t want to make the sacrifices in their lives that he describes you must make if you want to win with money.  Here’s a great video from him that gives you a good synopsis of what he’s all about and his financial success program.

New York Times Will Start Charging For Content in 2011

By Erik Folgate


I came across this article today on CNN Money about the NY Times charging for their content in 2011. It doesn’t surprise me that major news publications are going this route, because their print subscriptions are suffering largely, and they don’t know what to do. As a fairly serious blogger for over 4 years, my beef with the NY Times is not that they are making a business move to generate an extra source of revenue. My beef is that that reason they need to start charging for content online is because they spent the last 5 years thinking this real-time information movement on the internet was just a fad. They laughed at bloggers, and now many print journalists now work for blogs like Politico and the Huffington Post. If they would have spent time learning how to create a sustainable business model on the Internet from the beginning, they would have enough advertisement agreements on their website to subsidize the money they’re losing in reduced print subscriptions. Ok, I’m stepping off the soap box now. So, what does this mean for us?

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Websites and Mobile Apps To Help You Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions

By Erik Folgate

At Money Crashers, we’re serious about setting goals and accomplishing those goals. If you set goals for your money with regards to eliminating debt, saving money, organizing your finances, and preparing for retirement, you’ll find yourself a much wealthier person in the future. Not only do we want to help you set goals for 2010, we want to help you accomplish those goals, because setting goals doesn’t mean jack if you don’t make progress to accomplishing them. That’s one reason we put together one of the largest giveaways ever in the personal finance blogger community. We’re also committed to pointing you in the right direction to resources that can help you track your progress to accomplish your goals.

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Lending Club Review – Peer to Peer (P2P) Lending Explained

By Erik Folgate

After the stock market crashed at the end of 2008, many people, including younger generations became very skeptical of the stock market and what it had to offer as a legitimate place to park your money. Some turned to “peer-to-peer lending,” which is a concept that has been around for a very long time, but the method as to how it was carried out was not always efficient at all. It went a little something like this:

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Should You Pay More Money For Quality?

By Erik Folgate

One of the biggest struggles for a frugal shopper is balancing price with quality. The old adage, “You get what you pay for” is definitely true in many instances, but it’s very easy to be tricked into paying more money for something that isn’t worth it. The older I’ve become, the more I realize that paying for quality is important, but you must be careful and do your research to make sure you’re getting what you pay for. I’ve realized that buying the cheapest model or brand of a particular consumer item doesn’t always end up being cheaper.

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Get Financially Fit in 2010: Have The Heart Of A Giver

By Erik Folgate


The final segment of this mini-series is a charge to become a giver. Being a giver doesn’t always come natural, and that doesn’t make you a bad person. Having the heart of a giver takes daily training. Your ultimate goal for becoming wealthy should be to give back to others to help them reach their life goals. Sticking with the analogy of becoming physically fit, the ultimate of goal of losing weight is because you’ll improve your health dramatically and you’ll look and feel better. In the same way, giving back financially is the ultimate reason why we seek to build wealth. It’s therapy for the soul, because having wealth can quickly turn to a bad thing if not used properly.

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