The 3 Best Tips to Save Hundreds on Funeral Expenses

Today’s guest post on funeral expenses is sponsored by Safe Passage Urns.

As funeral costs continue to rise, families are looking for any alternative way to save money. Unless the person who has passed away has a last will or life insurance plan in place, the family of the decedent will be responsible for paying the funeral expenses. These expenses can amount to well over $7,300, which is the national average cost for a burial funeral according to the National Funeral Directors Association. The average American family simply does not have this kind of money laying around to foot the bill, but hopefully, after reading this guide you will be better prepared to save money while planning a funeral.

Funeral costs continue to rise, with the national average for a burial funeral costing $7,300. Here are several ways you can save money on funeral expenses.1. Selecting the Right Funeral Home

The variance between funeral home pricing can be much greater then what you might imagine which is why it is so important to do some comparison shopping beforehand. Some funeral homes charge much more for the same exact services. People will often select a funeral home because it is close to their home or has served their family in the past. It might seem easier to just go with what is most familiar, however, if there is a funeral home that is farther away from your family but it is significantly cheaper than other funeral homes closer by, then it makes sense to drive the extra half hour to save hundreds, possibly thousands of dollars. Continue reading

Surprise! You’d Never Expect These Online Bargains

Please note this post contains affiliate links which help to fund this blog at no cost to you. Thanks for your support!

I do love a deal. There, I said it, but by now it’s really not a secret, is it? If you are like me, a typical “bargain hunting” shopper, you probably have signed up for emails from some of your favorite online retailers like Staples, Bed Bath & Beyond, Kohl’s, and Walmart, etc. They are constantly sending offers like coupons and discounts on their latest promotions that you probably love just like I do. It can be a great way to find some online bargains, so long as you only use them when you need them.

When searching for online bargains, you may think you know where to look. But surprise!...you might just find the best deals in some unexpected places.Logically you think if you need clothes, check out the deals at Kohl’s, copy paper then look at Staples, and new cookware or a bathroom scale, Bed Bath & Beyond, right? But did you know the magical part of buying and selling online is that all of these retailers sell stuff you’d never guess they have and sometimes they are shockingly good deals! You’d never expect to get these bargains at these sites and that’s why today I am sharing with you some really surprising things that I have discovered! Continue reading

HoneyMoney Review and Giveaway – The No-Stress Way to Control Your Bucks

Thanks to HoneyMoney for partnering on this post. I was compensated for providing this review, but all opinions, positive or negative, are honest and solely my own. Please note this post contains affiliate links which help to fund this blog at no cost to you. Thanks for your support!

I have been tracking my money for a really long time using that “old reliable” Quicken on my computer every single day like clockwork. It’s something that is ingrained in my brain—recording my income, expenses, etc.—and I think about it a lot. In fact, you could say I have “trackitis”, i.e. a stress-related disease that involves knowing every aspect of my financial life. Quicken has a lot of features, options, menus, and it can make you feel more like a CPA rather than being a no-stress way to gain control of your money.

That’s where HoneyMoney comes in.

HoneyMoney is an online tool and mobile app to manage your money. This HoneyMoney review shows you how the tool works, plus the benefits and downsides.HoneyMoney is a relatively new way here in the USA to simply track your income and expenses, launching in 2017. It was originally begun in Europe back in 2011. Continue reading

Is The Nostalgia Trap Cluttering Up Your Life?

Last week my wife and I saw the film “Nostalgia” (free of course!) courtesy of AARP’s “Movies for Grown-ups” program for its members and guests that they offer every month or two. Nothing quite like a great night out (with popcorn) and a movie for free! It was great seeing the “Black Panther” premiere the last time too. It’s just another reason why I love the AARP even though some of you have told me that you aren’t particularly a fan. Oh, I might just add that my membership is also free this year thanks to a deal I got through a Walgreen’s promotion, so can that be bad? But I digress, here. The movie we saw, Nostalgia, got us thinking quite a bit. It’s a series of stories about people’s relationships to their memorabilia or the memorabilia of their family members.

My wife and I saw the film Nostalgia last week, and it really started me thinking about the memorabilia and other trappings of nostalgia that many of us collect. So how do we keep these "treasures" from cluttering our homes and our lives?

What today’s post is all about is a little deeper than just seeing a free movie. It is about the role that nostalgia plays in our lives today and what it may mean to you and your family’s future.
Continue reading

2018 Finances: How Do They Look, So Far?

One of the very most important things you can do when it comes to your personal finances is to take a good hard look at how things are going right now and make some adjustments whenever necessary.

So we're 5 months into the year, and now is a good time to see where we are when it comes to finances. Today's post looks at how the new tax law is affecting income, and how inflation is affecting expenses.Many years ago, when I was a young man working as an assistant buyer at Macy’s, I learned about making a good plan and how to evaluate and then re-evaluate how that plan was doing. The most important part of that concept isn’t a requirement to make changes after evaluating, but rather it’s the actual necessity to take a close look. Even if you don’t make a change in a plan, looking and doing nothing is actually doing something! Not looking is doing nothing and that can hurt your financial plans.

That’s why today I want to look at where we are in 2018, so far. Continue reading

How Your Money Obsession Can Hurt You

Got money on your mind? That’s not surprising, considering it affects so many aspects of our lives. It’s almost impossible not to think about money since we are bombarded every day with all kinds of talk about spending it, earning it, and well even just worrying about it, like your retirement planning or paying off your debts. Money obsession is real. There is almost no way to escape it except perhaps by pulling the blanket over your head and sleeping a little more, but even with that you do risk the potential of dreaming about it!

While planning your finances is important, thinking about them too much may mean you have a money obsession, and that can hurt you in many ways. Here are just some of the ways obsessing over money can have a negative effect on you.

Of course, thinking about money can be beneficial if it does lead to actions that can improve your finances and your life. But, and it’s a big but, when it becomes a preoccupation or obsession with your finances, it can also be very harmful, and I am not just talking about its mental effects either. How can your obsession with money hurt you? It can actually hurt you physically, financially, and emotionally! Continue reading

Be Smart When You DIY Home Improvement Projects

The idea of spending the weekend working around the house or apartment isn’t new. In fact, since “who knows actually when” it has always been a part of life. Even on the “Little House on the Prairie”, Pa (Michael Landon) was always “a fixin” something all the time. And so, DIY home improvement projects have been around a long time, but they seem to be enjoying a renewed popularity these days.

These days it's a popular option to DIY home improvement projects, but you need to be smart if you want to save money. Here are some considerations for the savvy DIYer.

Whether it’s repairing something that’s simply broken or remodeling your bathroom, kitchen, or basement, I am almost positive all of us have been there at least a few times. So the question that comes up a lot is this: How smart are you when you do home improvement projects? Continue reading

Personal Finance Basics: It’s a Numbers Game

Please note this post contains affiliate links which help to fund this blog at no cost to you. Thanks for your support!

Before you ever get your personal finances in order and start on the road to financial health and security, the place to start is to figure out your personal finance basics: the numbers! There are just so many numbers and terms out there, it’s easy to get lost trying to figure out what you really need to know. What numbers are the most important? Where do they come from and how can you change and improve them? Why is it so important to know and understand them in the first place? It’s really a numbers game of personal finances!

When it comes to personal finance basics, it's important to know your numbers. Here's a look at which numbers are important to track and exactly what they mean.

Personal Finance Basics: The Numbers

1. Know your Real Income (Spendable Income)

It sounds so darn simple, doesn’t it? If I asked you how much you make from your job, you probably know exactly what that number is. But your income is not your salary. Knowing your actual take-home, spendable income is the foundation for accurate budgeting. When you know how much you bring home from your job and any side hustles or passive income streams, you can then determine how much you can spend. You can also make well-informed decisions to prepare for your future. Continue reading

What? – It’s Blogiversary #4!

Back at the end of 2013, I was forced to stop working and “retire” because of health issues. I had had a heart attack earlier in the year and was also suffering from increased effects from diabetes, making me feel old and for the most part kind of useless. Yes, you could say I was thinking “pity party” and was selling that idea to anyone who would listen. Problem #2: no one wanted to listen.

As I'm celebrating my 4th blogiversary, I look back on where I started. Time flies when you're having fun!

Sunday?

So what does a formerly busy guy do when he’s forced to wind his life down and face the reality that he’s entered into a new phase…and he isn’t really mentally prepared for it? I began to call it the “every day is Sunday” syndrome, and looking at it you may see the reason why. Continue reading

Why Learning to Say No is So Powerful

Saying “yes” to almost everything requested from us feels safe, avoids conflicts, and takes less time than pausing to decide whether or not that request is truly important and valuable. Too often we are just so darn busy that we don’t have the time to stop and think about much of anything and so we default to our standard answer, “yes”. That used to describe the way I was, but not today. That’s why I’m learning to say no as my default answer.

As part of our quest for success, we are often conditioned to say yes to every opportunity. But learning to say no gives us the power to determine what's valuable to our work and personal lives. Here's why I'm learning to say no as my default answer.

What Made Me Change My Mind?

Saying no, thoughtfully, may be the most undervalued action of our time. In our world of relentless demands and infinite options, we really need to prioritize our tasks and responsibilities so that they can add the most value to our work and personal lives. That means deciding what to do more of, less of, and what to stop doing altogether. Saying no gives you the time you need to do just that. Continue reading