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Where Should You Put Your Emergency Fund?

Every personal finance expert probably agrees that you should set aside some money as an emergency fund. The amount you should have in your emergency fund is a subject of debate, but the typical rule of thumb is to keep somewhere around 3-6 months worth of expenses. You never know what the future might hold, so it makes sense to at least have some buffer to keep yourself afloat in case something happens.

Since we can all agree that we should at least have some money in an emergency fund, the next important question is where should we put that money?

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Paying Off Debt Is Never “Easy”

One thing that I absolutely HATE is when someone tells me that paying off debt is easy if you’re making a good salary. Maybe I take it too personally, but it feels like a knock on my accomplishment. After all, I paid off $87,000 worth of student loans, but I also had a good salary that allowed me to do it. Was it easier to do than if I had been making less? Of course. But it definitely wasn’t easy.

A recent headline I saw reminded me that a lot of people think paying off debt is just a walk in the park so long as you make a high enough income. Take a look:

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Earn Tax-Free Airbnb Income With The Masters Rule

Most people that I talk to about Airbnb agree that it’s a cool concept. Now that Airbnb has become pretty mainstream, my guess is that most of you have used it before or at least know someone who has. At this point, I think it’s probably more surprising to find someone who doesn’t know what Airbnb is.

Even though there are a ton of people using Airbnb on the guest side, the majority of people I talk to are understandably hesitant about actually hosting guests on Airbnb. I definitely understand the concerns – they’re ones I still think about as an Airbnb host. My biggest fears are having someone steal from me or otherwise mess up my house. Luckily, nothing like that has happened to me yet.

Even though I know that most people won’t sign up to be an Airbnb host, I still always try to convince people to at least give Airbnb hosting a shot. My rationale is that you don’t need to do it all that time. Instead, you can just try it out a few times and see what it’s like. If it’s too weird for you, you can just deactivate your listing. At most, you lose a bit of your time. But I think even people who are weirded out by having a stranger in their house can handle hosting someone in their home for just a few days per year. Why not challenge yourself and see?

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Independent Contractor vs. Employee: It Pays To Not Be An Employee In The Sharing Economy

A huge point of controversy in the sharing/gig economy world has been how to classify those of us who work in it. Most people reading this have probably seen or read about lawsuits challenging Uber’s classification of its drivers as independent contractors, rather than as employees. The same lawsuits have been raging on with basically every app out there in this space, including delivery apps like Postmates, DoorDash, and Caviar.

I’ve sometimes wondered if the folks fighting to be classified as employees understand the huge benefits they could be giving up by going that route. Don’t get me wrong, I totally understand the problem with misclassifying workers. Most people need the benefits and protections that come with traditional employment.

But, I suspect that many people fighting to be classified as employees under these apps don’t really understand what they stand to lose.

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What’s The Most You Could Save In Tax Advantaged Accounts?

When you think about it, the government allows you to put a ton of money into tax advantaged accounts. You just wouldn’t know it at first glance. Technically, a traditional or Roth IRA is the only tax advantaged account that every working person in the US has access to. As of 2017, the max contribution per person to those accounts is $5,500 per year. It’s a start, but someone saving only $5,500 per year will be saving for a long, long time.

Luckily, there are a ton more ways to save in tax advantaged accounts beyond just the IRA. You just need to think about what you need to do in order to gain access to the additional tax advantaged space. Admittedly, it takes a lot of work and some unique working situations in order to put away a ridiculous amount of money in this manner. Still, most people with totally normal working situations should be able to save much more than they probably think. This article will take a look at just how much someone could potentially save into tax advantaged accounts.

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