Types of Personal Finance Blogs

If you’re on my blog, then I probably already know the answer to the question I’m going to ask. But I wanted to put this out anyway.

I’ve noticed that there seems to be two different types of blogs in the personal finance blog-o-sphere. Ones that talk very generally about personal finance and give ADVICE about what to do (Think: The Simple Dollar or Enemy of Debt). They have a general goal and that tends to be to spread the gospel of personal finance to the masses. Which is fine and dandy, and once in a while I’ll read some posts on these blogs that inspire me, but for the most part I don’t really like these blogs.

Then there are others that are more personal. They tell the story of someone’s life and struggle with money. I get to follow these people day by day as they make their decisions, struggle with the consequences, and try to figure out what is best for their own life. To me, THIS is personal finance. And I love these blogs. (Note the blogroll is you doubt this).

There are a few blogs that I would consider a cross-over. Blogs like Fabulously Broke and Punch Debt in the Face. They are personal, but still have posts that I would consider “for the masses”. Fabulously Broke does this more-so, I’d say, but I still enjoy her blog because it has a personal element to it AND I there are some posts that really stick with me. Months after reading her post about how she simplified her paperwork (and life), I’m still thinking about it and considering doing it myself. Punch Debt is more on the personal side, but posts (to me at least) like he also wants some audience participation. (I’m not even sure how to write what I’m saying here…) But it is essentially like watching the birth of a great advice blog, but with user participation. He still talks about his big life choices and his job and what to do with X amount of money, but there is still an element of “Let me get your opinion because I want you to participate in this whole process as I become an awesome well-known blogger.” Yeah… just as I suspected I couldn’t quite put into words. However, I love the blog, and enjoy reading it every weekday (though I suspect I may have a bit of nepitism towards him seeing as we both went to the same undergrad).

So here is my question for you:

What types of personal finance blogs to you feel yourself drawn to? Ones that are advice blogs or personal journies?

Have you felt like your “choice” in personal finance blogs has CHANGED over time?

I know that when I first started, I read The Simple Dollar like it was going out of style. But now that I’m familiar with saving techniques and investments a bit more and have my budget “set” (hah!) – I don’t feel like I need advice blogs more than an encouragement from others struggling through the same thing and what they’re learnging along the way.

As for my blog, don’t expect to see any posts here on “How to Save 18 million dollars by doin X, Y, Z” – I don’t write advice posts for one simple reason: If I knew it all, I wouldn’t be in this mess. I’m still trying to figure out my life and how to make my personal finance work. And for those of you reading this blog, thanks for joining me in that journey!


12 Responses to Types of Personal Finance Blogs

  1. Oh yes. The types of PF blogs I was initially drawn to, were always personal journeys.

    I never liked those advice blogs… not much anyway. And I don’t give much advice on PF stuff with staid rules like “Do this. Save this. Budget that. Do that. Now this.”

    I kind of find those posts boring. Mine are more about ranting about things in personal finance πŸ˜‰ Like decisions people make, etc.

    But I do branch out in other areas more than I stick in personal finance because it’s just one topic I enjoy reading and writing about.

    And my choice has not changed. It’s stayed the same. I prefer blogs like yours with a personal touch… must be why I blog the same way.

    Thank you for the link love!

    • SS4BC says:

      Absolutely FB – I love reading your blog. =)

      You are part of the inspiration that caused me to do my Apartment Therapy that I’m going through right now. I don’t know if I can simply my life as much as you have yours, but I’m starting to see the benefits of simplification for sure.

  2. Jessie says:

    I think I blog, and read others on the personal side of things too. The only ‘advise’ blog that I read daily would be gail vaz oxlade’s. I find it really helps to read and learn through others personal experiences πŸ™‚

  3. MPP says:

    Personal all the way! I think reading the real-life ups and downs of bloggers are the most powerful because it helps readers feel…normal! I read your struggles and can completely relate to them because I’ve been there before. I do have to say I admire the more “teachy” pf blogs for the fact they can still come up with original material day after day.

    • SS4BC says:

      That’s a really good point MPP!

      Especially for me, because I only get paid once a month, sometimes I feel like I run out of things to blog about – and I couldn’t imagine being able to always have a new post every day, day after day, about personal finance when you’re not even writing about yourself!

      (Perhaps that is why I end up blogging about cleaning my apartment and my relationships – I just blog about whatever is on my mind that particular day)

  4. meinmillions says:

    I like the more personal side of personal finace too, which is reflected in my blog too. I try to do a mix of advice and personal stuff with more emphasis on personal examples.

    However, I still like a sprinkling of Simple Dollar, Get Rich Slowly and Frugal Dad. As I learn more about PF, I find myself slowly removing the more advice-y blogs from my Google Reader, but I definitely am still learning!

  5. Carrie says:

    I like personal πŸ™‚ I like “getting to know someone” through their stories on their blog. For actual real money lessons, I got to the big guys – MSN Money, Kiplinger’s, etc. etc.

    However, sometimes I wonder if liking the whole personal stories thing is more of a girl thing. I know most of readers are female…and it seems like the blogs that are male-run are more out to teach. Those males that have nailed it, though, are ones that make it fun – like Budgets are Sexy and Punch Debt.

    Good question!

    • SS4BC says:

      You may be on to something there about liking the personal side being more of a female thing – perhaps it goes towards our “gossip”y nature. πŸ˜‰

      Or our natural desire to want to support each other in group settings. Who knows!

  6. Personal, all the way!!

    It seems like a lot of the “advice” is repetitive. Like, turn off the lights when you’re not in a room and make sure to wash your clothing in cold water. *yawn*

    I like tips and tricks from a personal perspective. If that makes sense! πŸ˜‰

  7. Bank Gal says:

    I certainly love the personal blogs. My favorites take me through their day to day lives, plans for the weekends, as well as their money and spending. I like to get to know them, feel a connection. Advice is good, but it’s not always for everyone. Personal is the best. =)

  8. oilandgarlic says:

    I think personal blogs are more interesting to read. After a while, all the advice is pretty much the same and if you want advice, you can find good articles (not blogs) on money magazine, smartmoney, bankrate, etc..

    I wonder if it’s more a male/female thing also? Most of the pf blogs I read with a personal tone seem to written by women. However, if I read those too often, I’m actually tempted to spend more!

  9. I love punch debt in the face ninja and girl ninja are now apart of my weekly reading. I agree I want to read about the personal. I don’t write like that though I mean i’d like to write like that but I feel a little exposed. How do you do it?

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