Welcome to Financially Savvy Saturdays, the savviest personal finance blog hop on the planet, created specifically for personal finance writers! We welcome all things money here. Whether you’ve written anything from surviving on your emergency fund to the best ways to use your money to help others, you’re invited to link-up.
If it ties into personal finance, we want to read it!
This weekend I’m excited to welcome Gary from Super Savings Tips, where he writes greats tips anyone can use to save money and stretch their budget. Continue reading
So I’m out having dinner with my daughter and the bill comes to the table. It’s my treat (of course, since she rarely has the money to pick up any tab) and I pull out my rewards card for the loyalty points and of course the coupon: “Save $10.00 off any 2 dinners with the purchase of 2 drinks”. And then it happens.
“Dad, do you always have to use a coupon? It’s so embarrassing, like can’t you just enjoy this without having that? Are you that cheap?”
It never fails to amaze me when that conversation begins, and it often does. I have tried most of my life to teach both my children about being thrifty, or frugal if you prefer! For some unexplainable reason they just don’t seem to get it. Is it being cheap to want to conserve my money? Is it being cheap to take my daughter out to dinner? A free dinner for her? Exactly what is it that embarrasses her? Continue reading
Losing a loved one is one of the most difficult experiences you will ever have, which is only compounded by having to handle their final affairs and their estate. There’s no doubt that dealing with a subject like the loss of a friend or family member is emotional, stressful, and a cause of great despair. When you get to be around my age, you have probably dealt with this kind of event far too often, and frankly no matter how many times you have, it is never a comfortable feeling.
There are many details that must be taken care of to make this kind of event orderly and to take care of all of the important details that the decedent wanted. This only adds an element of anxiety and pressure to an already stressful situation. Knowing what needs to be done can help to ease your mind. Continue reading
How many times have you thought about how you’d spend a million dollars if it were suddenly yours? Like a zillion times? And that was probably just this past week, right? So here’s my problem. I really want a million dollars and I’m tired of just wishing for it.
Getting a Million Dollars
Back in the 1990’s, one of the biggest hit songs was The Barenaked Ladies singing “If I Had a Million Dollars”. Imagine, they probably made a million dollars just singing about that. Kind of ironic, isn’t it? So simple and yet why didn’t any of us do it? Continue reading
Although I write fairly regularly about saving money on groceries, believe it or not I’ve never been to an Aldi supermarket before, that bastion of discount grocery shopping! When I saw a coupon in the newspaper for a local one opening up, I knew the time was right to check it out and report back here on what I thought.
Saving on Groceries
Even though there are lots of other ways we can save money, our food budget is still one of the largest parts of our annual expenses. After all, we all need to eat! Food accounts for about 8% for the typical American family’s budget. Therefore it’s only natural we would seek out lower grocery prices without sacrificing on quality. Continue reading
Anytime I read about minimalism, my first thought is that I need to start decluttering, which would be a terrifying project considering the overstuffed closets in my modest condo. But while that would be quite beneficial, and it’s something I’m slowly working on, it’s not the only approach to minimalism.
The Financial Argument for Minimalism
There are of course two ways to increase your wealth: increase you income and reduce your expenses. People spend a lot of time thinking about how to increase their income, from getting a raise to developing a side hustle. In fact, one of my most popular posts on this blog, Making Money at the Flea Market, is all about a side hustle. Continue reading
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It’s now income tax season and (hopefully) you are gathering all of your tax information and planning to file your return over the next couple months, certainly by the April 18th, 2017 deadline. Yes, you have a couple of extra days this year because the 15th is a Saturday and the 17th is a Washington, DC holiday this year.
But once you’ve gathered your information, how are you planning to prepare your returns? Are you planning to do it yourself, or will you hire a tax professional to help? Continue reading
Last week, Mrs. Groovy wrote about six horrifying truths no one tells you about retirement. And while all six are true, the third one about craving foods and interests from your childhood is spot on. Not only do I spend lots of time playing the music from my youth and occasionally watching old television shows on the MeTV channel, but I like to reminisce about the entertainment that shaped my young mind.
When I was a little kid, I used to watch cartoons on “Popeye Theater” broadcast on one of my local TV stations every day after school. It was a show that featured a local hostess Sally Starr better known as “Our Gal Cowgirl Sal” hosting 2 hours of cartoons and little skits designed to entertain and educate kids. Believe me, it was a popular show from the mid 1950’s through 1971 in Philadelphia. Those were kind of great times when local shows had their own stars and the afternoon airwaves after school were ruled by children’s programming and not by court shows and “real talk” like it is today. Continue reading
If you are a homeowner, you probably know the feeling that you are under a tremendous weight and that you will probably be in debt for the next 20-30 years, or possibly even the rest of your life! It can be hugely depressing when you look at that and the likelihood that a mortgage will become a very close “friend” of yours—forever. It’s a huge decision to buy a home and more likely than not, it will be the biggest financial decision that you will ever make. Scary?
In 2015, about 62% of all Americans owned their own homes, a number that’s been pretty consistent over the past 20 years (although there has been a decline since 2000). Here’s the scary part. Less than one third of all those homeowners actually own their homes free and clear, and that means that the majority of them have, wait for it…a mortgage! Continue reading
He’s baaaaaaack! Saint Frugaltine—the patron saint of all that’s frugal and yet still a romantic at heart—is about to take center stage again. With just about 3 weeks to go, the planning is probably already in your mind for Valentine’s day ideas. Even if I was ever to forget about it, I have a built-in reminder right here where I live. Her name is Suzanne, my wonderful wife, and she is an avid Saint Frugaltine fan in every way.
Now I don’t want to appear like someone who doesn’t believe in the celebration. I do, really. I have to admit that I like being romantic and letting my dear wife know that I adore her, but I also realize that it’s not in our best interest financially to spend all kinds of money on all the many varieties of gifts, jewelry, clothes and the like that the brilliant merchandising minds of our time come up with every year to entice us. Even just a nice dinner out can be a budget buster on a special day like this one. It’s not too far behind the biggies like Mother’s Day and New Year’s Eve as far as pricing and reservations go. So what can one do? I want to mark the day as special, and I want it to be romantic and memorable, but I don’t like the idea that if I spend a fortune on Saint Valentine’s Day, I won’t be able to fulfill all of my financial obligations in February! Continue reading