Recommendations

Want to know what I like?  Check out the list below.  Some of these are referral links that could help pay for the blog, but please don’t feel obligated to sign up.  The point is to share with you some of the things that I find useful when it comes to my own life and finances.

Of course, I’ll continue to update this list as we go, so feel free to send any comments or recommendations my way.

Charities

Andy from Fiscally Free recently inspired me to add a recommended charities section to my site so here it is.  I encourage you all to send me your favorites as well so we can make this a growing list.

oxfam

Oxfam – Oxfam is an international group of charitable organizations aimed at helping communities become financially sufficient.  Founded in the United Kingdom, the group consists of thirteen affiliates worldwide and operates in over 90 countries.  Through Oxfam, each donation you make can help someone else become financially independent.  If you’re interested, please feel free to give a little and/or spread the word.

Checking Accounts

CCU

Consumers Credit Union – To my knowledge, this is the best checking account out there when it comes to interest.  You get 3.09% APY on balances up to $10,000 if you meet certain requirements each month (direct deposit/ACH debit/bill pay and 12 debit card transactions).  And, you’ll get all your ATM fees refunded if those requirements are met.

If you go further and open a CCU Visa Credit Card with them, you can get 4.59% APY on balances up to $20,000 if you do all of the above requirements and spend at least $1,000 with the credit card.

To qualify for these high interest rates, you must elect to receive your documents electronically and access your online account at least once a month.  There are no monthly fees or account minimums.

Capital One 360

Capital One 360 – Need to shuffle money around often?  Capital One 360 lets you link up to three external accounts for just that purpose.  You can even use them to meet the ACH debit requirement for a rewards checking account with Consumers Credit Union.

There are no monthly fees or account minimums.  If you use my link, you’ll get a $25 bonus by opening a checking or savings account with at least $250 (funded from a non-Capital One 360 source).  For the checking account bonus, you’ll need to make three debit card purchases within 45 days of account opening.

Brokerage Accounts

Tradeking

TradeKing – One of the cheapest brokers out there at $4.95 per trade.  You get access to stocks, bonds, mutual funds, ETFs, options and Forex.  Beware of their $50 annual inactivity fee, which applies to customers who don’t place at least one trade in a year and have less than $2,500 in all of their TradeKing accounts combined.  If you use my link, you’ll get a $50 bonus by funding $3,000 and making three trades within 90 days of account opening.

Optionshouse

optionshouse – $4.95 per trade and no inactivity fees or account minimums.  My only gripe is that their platform isn’t as user friendly.  Sorry, no referral bonus here.

Web Hosting



Bluehost – This is what I use for my website.  I’ve never used any other web hosting companies so I can’t really say that Bluehost is the best.  But so far, they’ve been reliable.