About Emily Guy Birken

Emily Guy Birken is a former English teacher and respected personal finance blogger. She lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin with her engineer husband and two high-energy little boys. She has written two books: The Five Years Before You Retire and Choose Your Retirement. Emily's thoughts on parenting and life in general are found at The SAHMnambulist.

Xero vs. QuickBooks: Which Accounting Software Will Work Best for Your Small Business?

If you haven’t taken any classes in accounting, using QuickBooks can feel overwhelming. People with accounting backgrounds love the software, but it lacks some user-friendliness for those outside of the accounting profession. Since QuickBooks has been the giant in the small business accounting industry for many years, the choices for keeping the books were limited. Thankfully, the […]

The Best Automatic Savings Apps to Grow Your Wealth in 2016

Saving money has a lot in common with flossing: you know it’s important, professionals wag their fingers at you when they find out you’ve been neglecting it, and it seems like a major pain to get in the habit of doing. Luckily for reluctant savers, technology has come to the rescue in the form of automatic […]

FreedomPop Review: Truly Free Mobile and Internet Service

Back in the early dark ages of the Internet, when you still had to dial up to get online, I once naively declared that online access should be free, and that I would never pay for Internet. I have eaten those words on a monthly basis for some time now, but I was reminded of […]

The Best Personal Finance Software for Taming Your Budget

Managing your money is a complex skill, especially now that you no longer have to leave the house or even pull out your wallet in order to spend money. That’s why it is more important than ever for you to track spending and stick to a budget. But the old school methods of budgeting can […]

Credible Review: A Marketplace for Student Loan Refinancing

If you’re one of the 40 million Americans carrying student loan debt, refinancing may be a way to reduce your loan costs and ease the debt burden. However, finding a reputable lender can be a stressful endeavor for borrowers, since the student loan refinancing marketplace is still a relatively new one. That’s where Credible comes […]

10 Tips for Healthy Eating on a Budget

Hardly a day goes by without another hysterical news report about the epidemic of obesity and unhealthy eating in America. We all want to be fit and healthy, but for a family on a budget, the high cost of healthy eating can wreak havoc on monthly finances. Part of the problem stems from the fact […]

The Best Personal Loan Sites For Your Credit Score

Personal loans can be a convenient way to get cash to cover a short-term financial hurdle. They are also a popular tool for consolidating and eliminating high interest credit card debt—and their fixed interest rates and payments can certainly save some borrowers money. However, since personal loans are unsecured, just like credit card debt, borrowers […]

How to Ask for (and Get) a Raise

When I was a shy teenager, my grandmother used to tell me “they can’t shoot you for asking” to help remind me that there was no harm in advocating for myself. This advice has been helpful to remember any time I have been nervous about asking for things—especially higher pay. Grandma’s advice is something most […]

Top 9 Reasons You Need a Will

I have been thinking about wills a great deal lately. My husband recently accepted a job in another state, and we took this major life upheaval as a reminder that we should update our will. We had not updated the will to include our second child after he was born, nor appointed a new executor […]

6 Gifts That Actually Help to Launch Graduates

It’s that time of year again. Graduation season is in full swing, and everywhere you look there are top ten lists telling you the best gift you can give the graduate in your life. While it’s always nice to receive presents, particularly when they commemorate the hard work necessary to earn a diploma or a […]

SoFi Review: Loans for Responsible Borrowers

In 2011, four students at the Stanford Graduate School of Business had a novel idea for how to help their fellow Stanford students afford their student loans: What if established Stanford alumni could invest in current students and recent grads by refinancing their student loans? The investors would receive a nice return and feel good […]

The 8 Best College Degrees for Job Security

In 2005, after working for peanuts for two years at a Boys and Girls Club, I decided to go back to school to become a teacher. Teaching seemed like a great career choice: I loved working with kids and I knew that teaching would provide me with job security for the rest of my career. […]