09/05/14 9:11am
Now that's what I call a cash encounter.

Now that’s what I call a cash encounter.

With rents in Brooklyn ridiculously high, student loan debt killing your joie de vivre and dim prospects for a raise, promotion or even a job with benefits, I don’t blame you for not giving a toss about saving for some mythical day far off in the future when you no longer have to work for a living. Pretty much everyone has been writing about how young people today are either unprepared for retirement or are being told there’s a fat chance they might actually get to enjoy any retirement at all, meaning no shuffleboard in Florida or matinee movies are in your future. It’s easy to be cynical about  promise of “retirement.” But even for Gen Y, who consider “saving” on par with the likelihood of finding a  one-bedroom in Brooklyn  under $1,000, retirement should still be a goal and with a little planning it could be doable. So let’s reframe it. (more…)

06/11/14 8:00am
Your grandma doesn't send $5 on your bday any more.

Your grandma doesn’t send $5 on your bday any more.

Graduation season is drawing to a close and it’s probably safe to assume that yet another crop of newly minted grads were forced to listen to commencement speakers offering a panoply of rearview mirror lessons of life and career. I was not among the luminaries who addressed these cap and gown-clad millennials with pearls of wisdom about things they wished they had learned in their 20s. But I do have a list of some things you should already be on top of by time you turn 30. Make it a summer project to get a jump on these now.  (more…)

03/10/14 3:21pm
From the authority on sexy. via Andrew WK

It’s easy to say when you’re rolling in sex wipe money. via Andrew WK

Andrew WK has lived many lives: party king, failed ambassador, sex wipe spokesman. When a man lives that much, he gains a certain wisdom that you can’t get when you aren’t endorsing sex wipes. So of course, Marketplace asked the man to impart some words of financial wisdom. WK suggested investing your money in a low-interest but safe savings account, and also- nah, just kidding. He said to spend your money with reckless abandon. (more…)

08/31/09 9:28am
Photo by Baptiste Franchina

Photo by Baptiste Franchina

Each week or so, our Dear Penny column investigates the answers to reader questions about saving money in Brooklyn. This week’s entry is written by Brokelyn associate editor Jonathan Berk.

If you ever listen to commercial radio (which you should, thanks to the newish 101.9 WRXP), you might hear a constant loop of ads from debt consolidators—companies like CareOne and DebtShield that claim to roll all of your bills into one monthly payment. If you’re awash in late fees and collection notices, you might be tempted by their promises to slash interest rates, lower your monthly payouts and get you debt-free in mere months. But are these offers a scam?

The answer: Some debt consolidators are legit, and others aren’t. And the practice is fraught with hidden fees, high interest rates on seemingly small payments (so you pay more in the end) and even fly-by-night consolidators who disappear with your money and social security number and leave your credit in shambles. (more…)