Reddit, Facebook and other forums are great places to have a personal finance conversation.
- Andy Panko’s Taxes in Retirement is a fast-growing community for those in or near retirement with tax questions and more.
- Reddit’s r/PersonalFinance is a subreddit with tens of thousands of members who talk about everything from insurance to employment.
- Boglehead’s forum is a tight-knit group with a healthy bias towards investing.
If you can imagine it, you can probably find it online. So it should come as no surprise that millions of people worldwide are turning to the Internet to find groups of like-minded personal finance geeks. Which of these communities is right for you? Read on to find out.
1. Taxes in retirement
The Society Taxes in Retirement calls Facebook home. Originally founded in March 2020, the group now has over 32,000 members. What is the reason for this rapid success?
The group’s mission is simply to be a place where you can learn and share knowledge about tax-efficient retirement planning. The forum allows users to tell their own stories and ask for advice from an understanding community. Many posts in the group start with the words “I’m X years old” before describing their situation and asking for advice. The group has a lot of personality, which is probably the reason for its explosive growth.
Another factor that can contribute to the group’s success is the excellent moderation team. Andy Panko, CFP®, RICP®, EA, is the group’s head honcho and often weighs in on the group’s discussion. His expertise as a financial planner and owner of Tenon Financial makes him a valuable resource for those seeking advice as they approach retirement.
2. r/Personal Finance
Reddit is famous for having subgroups of almost every variety, and personal finance is no different. The largest personal finance community is r/PersonalFinance, with over 16 million members.
The subreddit is home to a wide variety of discussion topics, including debt repayment, credit, budgeting, insurance, taxes, retirement and more. Users can filter these topics to find posts most relevant to them. In addition, the subreddit has an extensive wiki with detailed information on the above topics and many more.
Still can’t find what you’re looking for? Post a question to the forum and watch the Reddit machine do its magic. The community is very active, with posts garnering thousands of upvotes and hundreds of comments within a few hours.
3. The Bogleheads
Inspired by the late financial tycoon John Bogle, the Bogleheads are a group that preaches long-term investing (typically in low-cost index funds). The Bogleheads forum keeps Bogle’s legacy alive with over six million posts spanning nearly half a million topics.
The forum may have started as a place to discuss investments, but it has grown to become a place for all things personal finance. Posts are grouped daily into one of three categories. Personal Investing includes trades made by forum members, while the Investing category covers theories, news and more. In addition, the Personal Finance category includes all non-investing but finance-related topics such as insurance, credit, real estate, taxes and legal matters.
But the community isn’t the only thing that attracts new Bogleheads. The forum includes links to a comprehensive wiki covering everything from asset classes to indexing. The wiki stays true to John Bogle’s philosophy of saving early and often, diversifying and truly understanding one’s investments. In addition, the Bogleheads blog provides access to videos, podcasts, and webinars that explain important financial concepts.
Online forums can be a great way to build financial knowledge, but may not be the best for specific advice. As always, some comments are helpful and informative, while others may be less so. Exercise skepticism and always find another source of information before responding to advice given in an online community.
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