This is day 4 in a series for the month of April: Financial Literacy Month.
I stumbled upon The Motley Fool a long time ago. I remember learning about stock-trading via a game they had (way back when E*Trade first launched). I have since kept using Motley Fool occasionally whenever I want to learn something new about finance. IRA vs 401K, what’s a 403B, I’ve always turned to Motley Fool for their reliable, humorous explanations, which are written in the plain-English that we non-CPAs understand.
Motley Fool provides excellent communities and message boards, and some affordable financial literacy classes (at least they have, I’m not sure if they’re still available).
I learned about Mint.com from Motley Fool.
They also have excellent tax-planning resources!
The site is free with a free membership but there’s a premium membership as well. I’ve never explored this, as I’ve found everything I’ve needed in their free pages.
My only word of caution is “beware the ads.” Their advertising borders on oppressive. It also frequently has a doomsday or get-rich-quick tone that I tire of. There is email “why the oil boom is coming SOON” and the site is covered with ads. Sometimes it can be hard to tell the content from the ads.
They also have so many Fool-branded affiliate relationships that I can’t always tell what all they’re endorsing, or what is going to get me to sign up for some fund or stock newsletter. I find myself only reading the first 1/2 of all their pages and never the sidebars because of the advertisements.
That said, the message boards are excellent resources, as are their tip articles like “60 seconds to get out of debt.”
If you’re new to personal finance or trying to learn something new–check them out, but beware the ads–here there by dragons.