Judge Judy. It’s a TV show. It’s on every day all over the USA and other countries. It’s the best known of the syndicated court-type television shows and Judge Judy, a.k.a. Judith Sheindlin, is the highest paid TV judge in the world, by far. I get it. You probably love the show or hate it, but I readily admit that I watch it often. It’s one of my guilty pleasures of retirement.
Despite its comical and sometimes ridiculous stories and litigants, you can actually learn something from the show. I’m in constant amazement about what appears to be the most common sense concepts that are unknown or truly ignored and regularly quoted to the “real people, real cases” by Judge Judy. Continue reading
Is there really a science to looking for great deals on a specific day of the week? Well, according to some experts, there actually are better days to shop and save than others! Jot these down and next time you’re in the market for a bargain, try shopping on the best day for that category.
Buying a new car? Mondays are the best deals around. Why? Pretty simple, they have the least amount of shoppers on Mondays and after what may have been a poor weekend result (weather may have affected sales, or perhaps the staff just didn’t close many deals), the salesman are “highly motivated” to start the week successfully. Continue reading
In the world of financial responsibility and saving money, our rewards come from achieving our goals. It can be a long journey, and not always a “fun” one, as we adapt our lifestyles to fit our budgets. But a number of financial organizations and other companies are seeking to inject some play into that process through the gamification of savings. Games are great motivators, after all, who doesn’t like to win? So if saving money is your game, you may be wondering where the prizes are.
While winter is at its height here in New Jersey, I can’t help but think about vacationing somewhere warm and tropical. Vacationing is something I really enjoy, just like most people who like to get away from it all. You could just sit home and relax, away from your job, and enjoy your own backyard. You could take a stroll in the park and admire the flowers, but I much prefer travelling and seeing the sights as well as going to places I have never been before. And one way to do that is timeshare vacations.
The truth is I’m not going to paint a rosy picture about timeshares for you. They aren’t for everyone and depending on whom you talk with, they can be anything from fabulous to warning, warning, stay far, far away! Continue reading
While most people thinking about hearts right now are considering Valentine’s Day, they may not realize that February is actually American Heart Month. As a heart disease survivor, I learned about heart health the hard way by losing it and having to make up for lost time to get it back in shape (a process that I’m still working on). Taking care of your heart is just like saving money: it’s much easier to do a little bit regularly when you’re young, than to have to do a lot when you’re older to catch up. And taking care of your heart health will save you money, protecting you against costly doctor and hospital visits, expensive maintenance medications, and potential loss of income. Not to mention, it could save your life!
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S., as well as a major cause of disability. But there’s a lot we can do to prevent it and treat it. Continue reading
While Valentine’s Day (or Frugaltine’s Day if you will) usually grabs all the headlines in February, winter savings discounts have been trending up over recent years making Presidents’ Day now the best time to buy on many items and categories for the month, and even for the year! Last year revealed the biggest discounts ever on winter apparel, going as high as 85% off original prices, including stacking coupons, loyalty discounts, and BOGO’s. While you should never buy something just because it’s on sale, or worse, just because the retailer says it’s a good deal, if you’re looking for certain items, you’ll want to pay attention to the Presidents’ Day sales.
Presidents’ Day not only held offered amazing savings at retail stores, but online shopping as well, which most everyone believes culminates with the best savings on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Continue reading
I write about savings on this blog because saving money is very important to my wife and me. I enjoy the challenges of bargain hunting and knowing and feeling that I got a very good deal, if not the best deal available. But I also know that not everyone views a bargain in terms of dollars and cents.
Remember this rule of thumb above all else:
“A bargain isn’t a bargain if you don’t need it and won’t use it!”
I’m sure if you check in your closets you will find some things you have purchased because it was such a deal, but has never, ever been used. These purchases will probably wind up as a bargain to someone else at your next yard sale.
Your satisfaction with a bargain may depend on what kind of shopper you are. Over my years in retail, I have found that people can be divided into a couple different types of shoppers. Continue reading
You remember Saint Frugaltine, don’t you? Patron saint of those who wish to save money while remaining romantic? Well, Saint Frugaltine’s day is coming up soon and those of us who wish to celebrate have some planning to do.
Now if you’re one of those people who don’t celebrate, who think it’s all part of a grand conspiracy to get you to spend more money, let me ask you this: if how much you spend (if anything at all) is up to you, what’s so wrong with celebrating love on just one day a year? It doesn’t even have to be romantic love (singles, I’m looking at you!), it can be family love, friend love, pet love, hobby love or whatever kind of love you value in your life. If you do nothing else for Saint Frugaltine’s day, at least spend a moment of gratitude for the love that you have. You’ll instantly feel richer.
If you want to celebrate, let’s look at some of the ways you can remain true to your budget while displaying your passion for your love.
There may come a time when you face a situation when you need money that is above and beyond your emergency funds. We may all face them at some point, whether it’s a medical emergency, car or house situation, or perhaps something with the kids like a huge tuition bill or family issue you need to help solve. What can you do? There are several solutions, but today I’d like to address a common but often misunderstood one, the home equity line of credit, or HELOC.
First, let’s talk about home equity. The equity is the difference between what you owe on your home to pay off any mortgage and the current market value of your home. For example: Continue reading
Being a bit bored last week, I tried to approximate how much money I have earned and spent over the last 50 years or so. I sat down and began to put numbers down on paper to try to figure it all out. I thought hard about how much money I have earned and wondered how and where I have spent it…where does the money go? Certainly I can trace that I have hung on to some of it, saved it and socked it away for emergencies, and my retirement. I know I’ve spent thousands and thousands on housing, cars, and vacations as well. I can even go back almost 10 years in my tracked expenses and see exactly where it went for that period of time. But seriously, can anyone say they have truly and wisely spent all of their money?