We’d all like to think we know about most of the rules regarding our rights as consumers. If you’re old enough to know the name Ralph Nader (from before his political career), you can probably remember that he was very involved in protecting consumer rights and getting laws passed and policies changed that made shopping more consumer-friendly. The author of the book, Unsafe at Any Speed, he was particularly active with automobile safety and was largely responsible for the seat belt requirements in autos and their importance to safety protection regulations.
In a way, “Nader-isms” (if I can coin a word) have been responsible for a lot of things we do and think we know as consumers in all aspects of our shopping. I’ve spent 40+ years in retail stores and retail management, so I can tell you with authority that stores are now better than ever at attempting to satisfy and protect consumers. After all, happy customers are good for the bottom line.
But there are still myths out there that make us wary and distrustful. In a few cases, they may be justified. But you should know the myths from the reality. Continue reading
Last week I faced up to the reality that I really don’t know everything when I shared with you 50 things I don’t know. Now granted that I didn’t list everything I truly do not know. But one thing is for certain, if I had done so you would still be reading that list and I would still be writing it! Life is full of inconsistencies that you just can’t grasp. Sometimes you can solve them and sometimes they remain a complete mystery. But here’s the beauty part: there are many things I know! These are truths and practices that are simple and make life better every day, so please allow me to share. See if you agree and know them too!
It’s a fact of life today that you may find yourself in a situation where you’ll have to rent a storage unit. You see them practically everywhere you go these days and there are a slew of reasons why people are renting them more than ever. Although I have used a storage unit just once in my life, I did my homework first in order to save some money when using a storage unit was my only alternative.
Some of the reasons people use storage units make perfect sense and are almost unavoidable. For example, if you’re moving your residence and your new place isn’t ready just yet, storage units can be a lifesaver so you can either sell your home (or get out of a lease) when you want and have your belongings protected until move-in day arrives. Continue reading
Usually what I write on this blog centers around what I know. But I don’t know everything, in fact, there’s a whole lot I don’t know. Surprised to hear me admit that? As much as I enjoying telling anyone who will read or listen about everything I know, there is plenty I don’t know or understand. Some things are easy to find out and learn, from life experience, formal education, or learning from observation. But many others seem to be part of the “eternal mysteries of life”.
Today I’m going to share with you some of those mysteries, at least from my point of view: Continue reading
We all have the right to be happy, especially when it comes to marriage and family. Unfortunately, it just doesn’t always work out quite that way. Just because it hasn’t happened to you, don’t think that it can’t or that in some ways you may be different or immune. I personally have been through it, getting divorced in 1998 after 25 years of marriage, and I never imagined it would happen to me. I can tell you that from what I know and have experienced, that no matter whether the divorce was your idea or your spouse’s, there really are no winners in a divorce. In fact, the emotional stress as well as the financial stress can be a real wallop to each party, and can damage and impair both sides from the quick and successful recovery that each person truly seeks.
There are some ways to minimize those stresses, but first let me share with you what has changed about divorce recently. Continue reading
I have written several times about success, both financial and personal. We all feel that those are important and make us feel better about ourselves. There is, however, a real misconception out there than in order to be a success at work, relationships, and life in general that you have to be smarter, luckier, or know someone to ensure that you are successful. While that does happen, I’m here to tell you that long-term success is actually built on a series of habits that are extremely simple to understand and implement. In fact, most successful people do them routinely every day of the week! Try to emulate these behaviors and soon you will be on your way to both a successful and happy financial life.
Here are some simple daily steps to success that will help you on your way to reach your goals: Continue reading
One of the things I do nearly ever time I travel is to rent a car. It sounds like a good idea to get around town more easily wherever I’m visiting and sometimes it’s even an absolute necessity! But then I start to calculate the costs involved. That’s the catch for a frugal person like me, and that is when I begin to look for as many ways as possible to save on car rentals.
How to Save Money on Car Rentals
Here are some important points for any traveler to consider: Continue reading
If you’re on a tight budget, or you’re trying to pay down debt or take care of some other financial goals, it can be a challenge to enjoy an active social life, particularly if you are single and looking to find a romantic partner. When most people think of a first date, dinner at a restaurant is probably the most common image that springs to mind. I remember after my divorce when I first got back into the dating game, I would take each new lady out for a nice evening meal and the costs added up quickly while the connections didn’t always last. Ouch!
There are ways to dine out affordably, but you might not want to pull your coupons out on a first date. Dating is filled with enough etiquette-related and emotional landmines without also having to worry that your date thinks you’re cheap. So how can you show a potential new love interest a good time without spending a fortune? Here are a dozen cheap date ideas that are still enjoyable, fun or romantic. Continue reading
Believe it or not, I remember a time when television was black and white and the channels stopped airing programs for the evening and didn’t resume until the next day. Yes, I was very young as it was a looong time ago, but it happened, I swear! Now we have a gazillion channels to watch round the clock with more programming than we could ever hope to watch in a lifetime. Along with all that content comes a hefty price tag, as having a monthly cable or satellite bill has become fairly universal. “Cutting the cord“, or ditching cable altogether using a combination of newer services and devices, has become a popular way to save money, and it certainly is a viable one. But there may be some good (and not-so-good) reasons for not wanting to cancel your cable package, and there are still ways to cut your cable bill to keep more of your hard-earned money.
First, if you’re considering whether to cut the cord, plug your numbers and selections into this calculator to see whether it makes financial sense. Perhaps your internet costs will increase so much without a “bundle” that it isn’t worth dropping your TV package. Continue reading
It’s the middle of summer and I’ve really been enjoying the beautiful weather lately, lounging at the pool, visiting friends, and that sort of thing. I’d fallen a bit off on my quest for a healthier diet and more exercise, which is incredibly important for my health these days. So with some gentle encouragement from my doctor and my wife, I’ve gotten back to the program with some good results. Can’t let the lazy days of summer get too lazy!
Meanwhile, back at the blog, I’ve been trying out some topics that are a littler further out of the “saving money” box than before. Rest assured, I’ll continue to post about how to save money (it’s a passion of mine!), but building your financial wealth and living the good life involves a lot more than that. Continue reading