J.D. Roth

J.D. Roth

Accidental personal-finance expert.

Portland, Oregon

Areas of Expertise:

  • money
  • finance
  • blogging
J.D. Roth is an accidental personal-finance expert--a regular guy who found himself deep in debt. After deciding to turn his life around, he read everything he could about money and finance. In 2006, he started the award-winning website Get Rich Slowly, which Money Magazine named the Web's most inspiring personal-finance blog. Over the past four years, Get Rich Slowly has grown into an active community where thousands of readers a month share ideas on how to improve their financial lives. J.D. lives with his wife and four cats in a hundred-year-old house in Portland, Oregon.

Your Money: The Missing Manual Your Money: The Missing Manual
by J.D. Roth
March 2010
Print: $21.99
Ebook: $17.99

J.D. blogs at:

Becoming friends with your future self

June 11 2014

This article is by staff writer Kristin Wong. I fight splurges less often than I used to, but the urge still pops up occasionally. Sometimes, it’s okay to splurge; but mostly, I find myself wanting to resist temptation. There are a few questions I ask when I’m mulling over a purchase:… read more

One expense you have control of in ways you never thought

June 10 2014

This article is by staff writer William Cowie. What do you spend most of your money on? For most people, their two biggest expenses are their home and car(s). If you remember the post comparing expenses in 1913 to 2012, you might recall the three things that Mr. Average spent most… read more

Student loan update: Interest rate edition

June 09 2014

This post is by staff writer Honey Smith. In my last progress report, I mentioned that I took my student loans off Kwik-pay (autodebit) until after closing on my house. The thinking was that I’d have the money just in case things didn’t go smoothly with the house and move. Originally,… read more

Ask the Readers: What Do You Do When You’re Broke?

June 06 2014

Note: This article is from J.D. Roth, who founded Get Rich Slowly in 2006. J.D. recently launched the Get Rich Slowly course, a year-long guide on how to master your money. His non-financial writing lives at More Than Money. Last week, Mr. Money Mustache visited the Pacific Northwest. While he… read more

Getting a frugal start on summer

June 05 2014

This article is by staff writer Kristin Wong. Last Friday, I had an amazing realization: It was the weekend, the weather was beautiful, and I had absolutely nothing to do. Great feeling. On Saturday morning, my boyfriend and I decided to slap some sandwiches together and head to the beach. It was… read more

Act surprised: Your wedding ring is a terrible investment

June 04 2014

This article is by staff writer Holly Johnson. Divorce. It’s an unattractive yet common end to a relatively high percentage of marriages in the U.S. In fact, as many as 50 percent of American marriages end this way, often leaving catastrophic personal and financial consequences that linger for years. The… read more

8 Surprise expenses for new homeowners

June 03 2014

This article is by staff writer April Dykman. Over a year ago, I bought my first home. And while I’d been warned about the extra expenses that come with homeownership, there were still some surprises. I don’t mean the “unexpected” costs of property taxes and repairs — expenses that are… read more

Teaching life skills to your children

June 02 2014

This article is by staff writer Lisa Aberle. While I’ve tackled many kid-centered topics, like how to save on kids’ clothes, should you buy your kid a car, or pay for your child’s college, you know what is really important to me? Helping them learn to be responsible and self-sufficient, so they don’t… read more

Reader Stories: That truck

June 01 2014

This reader story comes from Brandon. Some reader stories contain general advice; others are examples of how a GRS reader achieved financial success or failure. These stories feature folks with all levels of financial maturity and income. Want to submit your own reader story? Here’s how. Buying a brand new… read more

Ask the readers: Do you gamble?

May 30 2014

This article is by staff writer April Dykman. When I was in college, I dated a guy with money problems. For instance, six months into the relationship, I found out that he owed a few people money. Like his ex-girlfriend. And then his dad, who gave him the money to… read more

In defense of frugality

May 29 2014

This article is by staff writer Kristin Wong. Frugality isn’t very sexy. I’ll admit that. For most people, the concept of thrift probably conjures images of coupon clipping, stock photos of piggy banks, and Benjamin Franklin — none of which are terribly glamorous. Frugality, is, however, in line with the… read more

A guide to managing your fear of money

May 28 2014

This article is by staff writer Kristin Wong. My first year of high school, I was looking for an easy, goof-off elective — a class that would allow me to take a break in between Geometry and English, and maybe catch up on some magazines or take a quick nap.… read more

Meet the bloggers

May 27 2014

J.D. Roth emailed this morning to tell me that Mr. Money Mustache is visiting Portland later this week, and they’re hosting a blog meetup on Thursday, along with Tyler Tervooren of Riskology. If you’re in the Portland area, come meet the three mustachioed men. J.D. posted the details and directions… read more

Your landline: Think twice before cutting the cord

May 27 2014

This article is by staff writer William Cowie. A while ago, my wife and I did what we do from time to time — ask if there’s another cost-saving opportunity we’ve overlooked. I don’t know about you, but the quest for fiscal prudence is generally at its highest in our… read more

Honey progress report: Big change edition

May 26 2014

This post is by staff writer Honey Smith. Well, the last couple of months have been a pretty wild ride in The Honeycomb. We moved out of our old place and concluded our experience with Cash for Keys, we bought a house and moved, and I am experimenting with a… read more

Opposites Attract—What to do when you’re both of different financial mindsets

May 25 2014

This reader story comes from Tina Sullivan. Some reader stories contain general advice; others are examples of how a GRS reader achieved financial success or failure. These stories feature folks with all levels of financial maturity and income. Want to submit your own reader story? Here’s how. Growing up with… read more

Ask the Readers: How do you dream?

May 23 2014

This post is from editor Linda Vergon. “I’m just a dreamer. I dream my life away. I’m just a dreamer who dreams of better days.” Ozzy Osbourne We can be so romantic about things. Take dreams, for instance. A dream is like a magnet. Once we set our hearts and… read more

Taking the Chairman’s Flight and other career-limiting moves to avoid

May 22 2014

This article is by staff writer Sam. Sam spent 13 years working in Equities on Wall Street and discusses financial independence strategies on Financial Samurai. Sam is also the founder of the Yakezie Network, the largest personal finance blog network on the web. Working on Wall Street was tough. I… read more

The pursuit of passive income: Is it time to become a landlord?

May 21 2014

This article is by staff writer Holly Johnson. If you visit personal finance or investing blogs on a regular basis, you’ve probably read countless articles on the virtues of passive income. After all, many personal finance experts believe that passive income is the key to early retirement, financial independence, and… read more

The only two things you need to remember about funeral costs

May 20 2014

This article is by staff writer April Dykman. When someone has to make funeral arrangements, they often look to the funeral home for help. They select one of the three coffins suggested by the funeral home. Often it’s part of a mid-priced package deal, one that includes pretty much everything… read more

Deals on wheels: Should you buy your child a car?

May 19 2014

This article is by staff writer Lisa Aberle. As far as I know, only one reader of Get Rich Slowly knows me personally. And last week, I was having lunch with my one-person fan club. (Actually, I am not sure she’s even a fan, but she did buy my lunch.… read more

Reader Stories: The renegade’s complete guide to personal finance

May 18 2014

This post comes from one of our readers, Dan Stelter, who is a personal and business finance enthusiast and freelance financial copywriter. He has been published at a variety of blogs around the web, and as a ghostwriter at a print publication, The Secured Lender.   Dan learned his personal finance… read more

Ask the Readers: What is your most pressing financial issue (this year)?

May 16 2014

This post is from editor Linda Vergon. We asked this question back in 2012 at a time when the political process was in full swing, demanding that we decide if we were any better off than we were four years prior. While the mere thought of election ballyhooing is enough… read more

Talking with Tess Vigeland about the psychology of money

May 15 2014

Note: This article is from J.D. Roth, who founded Get Rich Slowly in 2006. J.D.’s non-financial writing can be found at More Than Money, where he recently wrote about how to be happy. As part of the Get Rich Slowly course, I interviewed 18 of my favorite financial experts. Combined,… read more

Gratitude is good for your soul … and your finances

May 14 2014

This article is by staff writer Kristin Wong. I’ll admit it. When I lost work last year, a tiny sense of entitlement crept up on me. Okay, maybe it was more than tiny. On the outside, I told people: “I just feel like I deserve a good job, you know?”… read more

Is this where you can cut the most the quickest?

May 13 2014

This article is by staff writer William Cowie. The post a couple of weeks ago about the whole inequality thing brought out some good insights and raised several new questions. We love to play board games, and one of our favorites is Acquire, a great money game which seems to… read more

What type of procrastinator are you?

May 12 2014

This post is by staff writer Honey Smith. Aah, procrastination. Controlling our time can be difficult, and most of us are intimately familiar with the act of delaying the act of starting or completing a task. Piers Steel, professor of human resources and organizational dynamics at the Haskayne School of Business at… read more

Reader Stories: From side hustle to full time: When it’s time to go all-in

May 11 2014

This is a guest post from Jen Adrion, one half of the creative duo behind These Are Things. Together, she and Omar Noory craft a collection of modern maps, draw informational illustrations, and write about the business of art at MakingIt.co. Four years ago, my partner Omar and I were… read more

Take the Pain Out of Saving Money
April 01, 2010
In this live event, Mac Slocum, online editor for O'Reilly Media, will conduct a video interview with J.D. Roth, financial expert and author of Your Money: The Missing Manual. Roth will discuss practical tips for saving money and helpful techniques that...

"A book that everyone should have on hand."
--Philippa Lane, Amazon.com

"This really is the book I wish I’d read, (and kept to refer to) when I was twenty years old and in my first adult job. (Administrative Assistant at a marketing firm in New York City.) Luckily, it’s still a valuable resource when a gal is working her way through her early forties."
--Katy Wolk-Stanley, Non-Consumer Advocate

"...a top all-around financial guide any consumer or student will relish."
--Diane Donovan, The Bookwatch: The Money/Finance Shelf

"...The author doesn't claim to have all the answers: throughout the easy-to-read book there are notes about websites and other books for further reading."
--The Associated Press, The Oakland Tribune

"...a comprehensive book filled with practical advice. "
--Kimberly Nicoletti, Summit Daily News

"Your Money: The Missing Manual offers sensible advice for getting the most from your money. "
--Steve Bush, New Equipment Digest, May 2010

"Your Money: The Missing Manual is a must read. Everyone will walk away with a few tips that they can apply to your life and save some money in the process."
--Lisa Martin, Lisa Reviews

"...if you are just starting your business, you absolutely must read this book. It will anchor you on some sound principals that will help you be a long term success."
--Bradford Shimp, all business answers

"Had I read Roth's book and followed even a small bit of his advice we would have been so much better off."
--Lynda Lippin, Blogcritics.org

"If you need a book on personal finance, Your Money: The Missing Manual is a solid choice. It gets all the important stuff right, and does a great job of distinguishing between that stuff (that you have to get right) and the peripheral stuff (that you can do any of several different ways, as long as you do it)."
--Philip Brewer, Wise Bread

"If you’ve read personal finance advice and never found it very approachable or relatable, Your Money: The Missing Manual is a great solution to that problem."
--Trent Hamm, The Christian Science Monitor

"...this is a solid 9/10 and recommended."
--Mark Dykeman, Broadcasting Brain

"...this book is a great consolidation of financial common sense wisdom that will benefit even the most accomplished financial novice."
--John Vacca, Amazon.com

"All I can say is, where has this book been all my life!...I receive many books that after I read, I give away, I can honestly say that this is one book that I will be keeping for myself. Also, I know this is a book that if one in which I will read over and over and use as a reference guide as I get older."
--Dad of Divas, An Island Life

"Your Money: The Missing Manual is not a cutesy quick-fix for those of you with the 'McDonalds Mentality.' If you're looking for something like that, keep looking. But if you're looking for a real manual, a text book if you will, on money management, spending habits, and the psychological insight needed to understand why we do some of the dunderheaded things we do, this could be your ticket. Your Money The Missing Manual can show you how to get out of debt and to truly understand what makes you, personally, tick. You will learn how to manage your resources so that you can pursue the things/activities that make you truly happy."
--Artie Alinikoff, MyMac Magazine

"J. D. Roth's book is a much-needed dose of reality in the world of personal finance, and I would strongly recommend it to anyone looking to "clean house" when it comes to their financial affairs."
--Thomas Duff, Duffbert's Random Musings

"It's a good book to have around, and to get in the habit of reading frequently."
--Dan Serra, McClatchy-Tribune News Service

"Your Money: The Missing Manual a good, basic manual on learning how to manage your money in such a way that it doesn't consume you. "
--Miranda Marquit, AllBusiness.com