Tour de Personal Finance, Stage 1, Round 1 – Posts 1-4

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Welcome one and all to the first post/start/’le grande depart’ of the 2nd annual My Personal Finance Journey Tour de Personal Finance! It’s great to have you here! 

A quick look-ahead for this year’s event

We had an awesome turn-out this year with 52 total blogs and articles competing! I’ve planned out the schedule, and the Tour de PF this year will last from today, July 2nd until July 22nd (the last day of the Tour de France when it finishes in Paris). 

Also, as I mentioned in the introductory post for this year’s eventI will be reserving the reader portion of my 10% monthly blog income give back event for both June and July as prize money to the Yellow Jersey winner (~$100). The Yellow Jersey winner will also select a charity of their choice to receive the charity portion of the 10% monthly blog income give back (~$100).

Stage 1

Without further a due, let’s continue on with the 1st Stage (the first of the competition) of the 2012 My Personal Finance Journey Tour de Personal Finance (to follow all of the action, click on the Tour de Personal Finance category link and scroll down to read all the posts involved in this subject).

To view the most up-to-date brackets of the competition, click the following link – 2012 Tour de PF Bracket

Going along with Tour de France cycling tradition, I’ve listed each competition within each stage as an “intermediate sprint” (one post versus another) along with the description provided by the blog author when the post was submitted.

Also, if applicable, I will give a brief description of the stage of the Tour de France that took place the same day as (or that has happened since the previous Stage of) the competition.

How to Vote

You can vote for the two articles (one from each intermediate sprint) you’d like to see proceed in the Tour by commenting in the comments section below and telling which are your favorites.

I’ve listed a keyword after each post title to make it easy to vote (as a made-up example, you can just comment: Sprint 1: Mutual; Sprint 2: 401k, etc.) Be sure to comment which one you like the best out of each set of two! Criteria for the best article is completely up to you, but you can use these factors as a guide: 1) post of your favorite blogger, 2) most interesting post, 3) most thought-provoking post, 4) most unique post, or 5) most actionable post.

Here are today’s competitions (Sprints 3-4 of Stage 1 will go live later this afternoon, so be sure to cast your votes for those articles as well!):

Voting will continue until July 4th for this Stage!

Intermediate Sprint # 1

  • I Miss Checkbooks (Checkbooks): This post proves that something as simple as a checkbook can clear up a HUGE misunderstanding. Now that people rarely use checkbooks, I’m sure life will be awkward for many people, but mostly for me.
  • Fund Fees: Nest Egg Killer (Fees): Paying high fees for the privilege of investing in actively managed mutual funds is not worth the cost. The likely effect of those fees will be to slash your standard of living in retirement.


Intermediate Sprint # 2

  • Pay Off Mortgage Early or Invest– The Complete Guide (Mortgage): Should I pay off my mortgage early or invest? Forget the dangerous half-truths and over-simplified conventional wisdom about getting out of debt. Instead, learn the many dimensions to paying off your mortgage early in this complete guide so you can make a smart financial decision that perfectly fits your personal situation.
  • When Joint Finances and Emotions Collide (Emotions):  Sharing money with another person is often a normal part of life for some, but it can be much more challenging than meets the eye for others. Does it matter who earns the money when deciding how it should be spent? 

Tour de France Daily Recap

The 2012 Tour de France actually started on Saturday, June 30th (I am a few days behind in starting the Tour de PF since I was out of town this weekend at a wedding) with the opening Prologue. In the prologue, time trialing specialist, Fabian Cancellara, took out the win by 7 seconds of the 2nd place finisher to claim the first yellow jersey of the 2012 Tour.

In Sunday’s stage (Stage 1), Fabian held on to the yellow jersey during a bunch finish on a flat stage in to Seraing, Belgium. Today’s stage (Stage 2), is also fast and flat, with the riders going from Vise to Tournai. The stage is going on right now, so I’ll try to bring an update on the result when the 2nd Stage 1 post goes live later tonight.

One really cool fact/aspect about this year’s Tour de France is that George Hincapie will be riding his 17th Tour de France. If he finishes the race, he will set the record for most Tours finished! Quite impressive! I actually was lucky enough to get his autograph when I saw the 2008 Tour depart from Brest, France on the Brittany coast.

    ***Photo courtesy of


    1. sprint 1 – fees
      sprint 2 – mortgage
      My recent post A Ridiculously Simple Way To Build Wealth

    2. Kurt @MoneyCounselor says:

      I gotta agree with Todd:
      My recent post Credit Card Debt Trends

    3. Preston says:

      Sprint 1 – fees
      Sprint 2 – mortgage

      If you're not an expert and looking for sound advice on important topics, I gotta vote in the above order. Fees may be a yawn to someone already in the know, but that's not me. And I've often wondered about the mortgage thing, so that one was right on target.

    4. Wow, really? The fee thing doesn't even compare to the checkbook one. 🙂

      I've heard a bazillion times about nest egg fees (yawn). Now, a story about an awkward situation….priceless.
      My recent post Two Guys & Your Money Episode #1: Top 5 Moves to Make in a Volatile Market

      • I forgot to vote! Checkbook & Emotions. I can't tell you how often I saw people's emotions get in the way of doing the right thing.
        My recent post Two Guys & Your Money Episode #1: Top 5 Moves to Make in a Volatile Market

    5. Checkbooks

    6. 1 Checkbooks
      2 Mortgage

    7. Checkbooks

      My recent post My First Job: Lessons Learned

    8. Tie the Money Knot says:

      My recent post 7 Tips for Splitting Finances When a Relationship Ends

    9. Fees
      My recent post Happy Hour: Health Care Tax And Little Green Men

    10. Edward Antrobus says:

      My recent post June Net Worth Update

    11. Checkbooks
      My recent post The Number One Way Car Owners Can Save Money

    12. Jana@da says:

      I need to go with checkbooks since he bribed me (just kidding) and emotions.
      My recent post Money Tune Tuesday: Random songs edition

    13. URFinanceSimple says:

      My recent post Should the Glass-Steagall Act be brought back?

    14. Voting for this Stage is now over. The winners are Checkbooks and Mortgage and will advance to Round 2, starting in a few days time! Thanks to everyone for participating and voting! 🙂
      My recent post Tour de Personal Finance, Stage 4, Round 1 – Posts 25-28

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