Staff Writer

Bill Fay

Bill “No Pay” Fay has lived a meager financial existence his entire life. He started writing/bragging about it in 2012, helping birth Debt.org into existence as the site’s original “Frugal Man.” Prior to that, he spent more than 30 years covering the high finance world of college and professional sports for major publications, including the Associated Press, New York Times and Sports Illustrated. His interest in sports has waned some, but he is as passionate as ever about not reaching for his wallet. Bill can be reached at [email protected].

Declaration of Independence and flag

Timeline of U.S. Federal Debt Since Independence Day 1776

By Bill Fay | May 19, 2021

As we get closer to America’s 245th year of independence, it’s a good time to reflect on how debt is woven into our country’s fabric. Especially since we’re now weaving…

Marijuana is big business

The Economics of Marijuana Legalization

By Bill Fay | May 18, 2021

Now that residents of Colorado and Washington voted to legalize and regulate the sale of recreational marijuana for adults over 21, and 18 states and the District of Columbia all…

U.S. debt and deficit

What You Should Know about America’s Deficit and Its Debt

By Bill Fay | May 18, 2021

Over the next several weeks, there is going to be a lot of chatter about the debt, as the fight to raise or not to raise the debt ceiling will…

College students at job fair

Get a Jumpstart on Landing a Job Before Graduating from College

By Bill Fay | May 17, 2021

The job market just might be easing up for college graduates. That’s what some of the latest evidence suggests, which is good news for anyone scheduled to finish college with…

health-insurance-enrollment-image

Health Insurance Tips for Open Enrollment Period

By Bill Fay | May 17, 2021

With 2012 coming to a close in a matter of weeks, now’s the time to start planning for a healthy and prosperous new year. October and November mark the period…

Older couple sitting with papers and considering bankruptcy

Retirees and Bankruptcy

By Bill Fay | May 14, 2021

People are supposed to relax when they retire, not worry about financial problems. Studies show that a lot of retirees turn to alcohol for debt relief, but there is a…

Rent Or Own Your Home In Retirement

Key Retirement Question: Rent Or Own?

By Bill Fay | May 14, 2021

There are 10,000 Baby Boomers retiring every day for another 14 years, which means a lot of people have a choice that will have a monumental impact on their retirement:…

Preparing for hurricane

Preparing a Business for a Hurricane

By Bill Fay | May 14, 2021

With the latest in forecast technology, it’s no longer a surprise when a monstrous storm like Hurricane Sandy is on the way. There’s usually substantial time for meteorologists to carefully…

family business

Why You Should Keep Your Small Business Affairs Separate from Family Life

By Bill Fay | May 14, 2021

Keeping your small business finances separate from your family life is a smart strategy for many reasons. In fact, not separating the two is likely to cause all sorts of…

Pen on a balance sheet

Financial Advice for Dealing with Irregular Business Income

By Bill Fay | May 14, 2021

Starting and running your own business is the epitome of the American Dream. Who wouldn’t love to be their own boss, the master of their own destiny? As ideal as…

college-affordable-image

Experts: Don’t Panic, College Can Be Affordable

By Bill Fay | May 13, 2021

For starters, don’t panic. An affordable college education remains within reach if you plan and proceed wisely. Forecast the costs, survey the options, and apply for any aid packages for…

College Graduate Budget Computer

College Graduates Should Budget (And Save!) Right Away

By Bill Fay | May 13, 2021

When Ryan Dwyer received his undergraduate history degree from the University of South Florida in 2016, he felt a sense of accomplishment. His hard work had paid off with society’s…

College Student on computer looking up his credit score

College Students Could Learn More About Credit Scores

By Bill Fay | May 13, 2021

If you have children going off to college this year, and don’t already have an exaggerated list of study requirements mapped out for them, it’s wise to suggest they learn…

Dining Costs More Than Student’s Budget

Dining Costs Eating up College Students’ Budget

By Bill Fay | May 12, 2021

As the cost of college skyrockets, students are searching for ways to cut expenses. A good place to look is on their dinner plates. Food expenses can wreck a budget…

student financial tips

10 Financial Tips for College Students

By Bill Fay | May 12, 2021

Now that you’re in college, it’s likely that you are in charge of your own financial affairs more so than when you lived at home and functioned mostly as part…

file tax return on a calendar

Didn’t File Taxes Yet? Here’s How To Limit Damage

By Bill Fay | May 11, 2021

April 15 has come and gone, but millions of Americans are still fretting over their taxes, mostly because they haven’t paid them yet. The IRS estimates that 25 percent of…

1040 tax form

Five Tax Tips for Beginners Filing on Their Own

By Bill Fay | May 11, 2021

Whether you’ve landed your first part-time job in high school or made your first career move after college, odds are that you haven’t taken a class on how to file…

man in jail for not paying taxes

How to Avoid Jail When You Owe Back Taxes

By Bill Fay | May 11, 2021

A very rich person once said, “We don’t pay taxes. Only the little people pay taxes.” Her name was Leona Helmsley. Guess what? She went to jail for not paying…

Happy Dad IRS

IRS Gives Parents a Break When Adult Kids Return Home

By Bill Fay | May 11, 2021

The Millennial generation is moving back home in record numbers, and their parents are getting some sympathy from, of all people, the IRS. The much-despised agency has a soft spot…

road sign with tax refund written on it

How to Spend Your Tax Refund

By Bill Fay | May 11, 2021

The big financial question for Americans every spring: How should I spend my tax refund? The Internal Revenue Service says most of you – somewhere between 75 and 80 percent…

Man handing refund of cash

How to Get a Refund on Your Student Loan Payments During COVID-19

By Bill Fay | May 3, 2021

The rules governing repayment of federal student loans contain so many nooks and crannies that it shouldn’t come as a surprise that you may have missed one created during the…

Envelope containing the third stimulus check

Third Stimulus Check

By Bill Fay | March 10, 2021

The average Joe – not Biden – figures to benefit most from passage of the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan. Approximately 145 million Americans will receive a third round of…

$15 minimum wage

$15 Minimum Wage Increase: Will It Happen?

By Bill Fay | February 10, 2021

Biden wants the minimum wage – currently set at $7.25 an hour – to jump to $15 an hour by 2025. The increases would be phased in at approximately $1.75…

Joe Biden announces American Rescue Plan

Details on the American Rescue Plan

By Bill Fay | January 14, 2021

President-elect Joe Biden unveiled the American Rescue Plan, a $1.9 trillion war on the prolonged suffering of Americans hardest hit by coronavirus. Included in his proposal: a fresh round of…

Image of newspaper titled Covid-19 Relief Bill with ribbon attached

Covid-19 Relief Bill

By Bill Fay | December 30, 2020

The second COVID-19 relief bill is now law – all 3,126 pages of it. The people in Congress who passed it admit they don’t know what all is in it,…

Second stimulus check on top of the first stimulus check

Second Stimulus Check Update

By Bill Fay | December 29, 2020

If you haven’t looked at your bank account this week, now might be a splendid time. The long wait for a second stimulus check from the U.S. government finally is…

Calendar with dart on second stimulus date

When Will a Second Stimulus Check be Delivered?

By Bill Fay | December 23, 2020

A second stimulus check – the financial gift from the U.S. government to help consumers recover from the economic belt coronavirus gave the American economy – needs only a signature…

Google search bar with phrase student loan benefit

Google Is the Latest Company to Offer Student Loan Repayment Benefits

By Bill Fay | November 3, 2020

If the biggest employee benefit you receive is when your company bothers to fill the toilet paper rolls in the employee bathroom, you might not want to read this: Google…

Woman deciding whether or not to pay down student loans during COVID-19

Paying Down Student Loans Before the COVID Suspension Is Lifted

By Bill Fay | October 28, 2020

If you are paying on a federal student loan, you probably already know that the government CARES Act has provided benefits that suspends payment and interest requirements through December 31.…

Campaign buttons for Trump and Biden

Trump vs. Biden: How Their Plans for Student Loan Debt Compare

By Bill Fay | October 16, 2020

Americans with student loan debt have a $1.6 trillion question on their minds: What would President Trump or a President Biden do about all that money these 45 million borrowers…

Gavel on table

Court Ruling Favors Student Loan Bankruptcy Discharge

By Bill Fay | October 2, 2020

There hasn’t been much good economic news in 2020, but if you’re buried in student loans, there was an astoundingly positive development recently. Thanks to a recent court ruling, you…

Woman applying for a new credit card on her computer

Should I Apply for a New Credit Card During COVID?

By Bill Fay | September 24, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has created record unemployment, erased profit margins, closed businesses and wreaked havoc on almost every family’s money outlook. It has even affected America’s ultimate get-out-of-jail financial symbol…

Sign for VA office

VA Extends COVID-19 Debt Relief to Veterans Through 2020

By Bill Fay | September 15, 2020

Veterans indebted to the Department of Veterans Affairs won a partial payment reprieve this summer that will last at least through the end of 2020. The VA action extends a…

For sale sign in front yard of house

Coronavirus and the Real Estate Market

By Bill Fay | August 14, 2020

Dorothy surely wasn’t thinking of life in a COVID-19 pandemic when she clicked those heels in the “Wizard of Oz” and opined that ‘there’s no place like home.’ But her…

Senator Mitch McConnell at a podium

Details on the HEALS Act

By Bill Fay | August 5, 2020

Congress and the White House are still debating whether the HEALS Act, HEROES Act – or some compromise Act in between – will deliver the next round of coronavirus relief…

Nancy Pelosi at a podium

Details on the HEROES Act

By Bill Fay | July 21, 2020

When the House of Representative passed the $3-trillion HEROES Act on May 15, it all but guaranteed that a second stimulus check would arrive for Americans in need of financial help…

Bankruptcy court with COVID-19 sign

COVID-19 Bankruptcies

By Bill Fay | July 16, 2020

The storm is coming. American consumers will be filing personal bankruptcies in record numbers by the end of 2020. That is the projection from bankruptcy attorneys, bankers and other experts…

Image of the stimulus COVID-19 relief check distributed by President Trump

Stimulus Checks for COVID-19 Relief

By Bill Fay | July 1, 2020

The phrase “stimulus check” is second only to “coronavirus” or “COVID-19” as something to talk about these days and people are definitely talking. About 159 million Americans have received the…

Calendar with July 15 marked as tax day

Tax Season Countdown All Over Again

By Bill Fay | June 30, 2020

Everyone knows the old saying: Time flies when you’re procrastinating. Seems like only yesterday we were breezing past April 15 — the traditional deadline for income tax filing — and…

Second stimulus check being shredded

Republican Advisors Say No Need for Second Stimulus Check

By Bill Fay | June 16, 2020

Don’t plan on receiving and cashing a second COVID-19 stimulus check just yet. A group of 20 fiscal hawks, many of the close advisors to President Trump, sent Trump and…