Budget Friendly Weddings

Budget Friendly Weddings

Marriage, debt and moving your home are ranked among the top most stressful life events. A wedding often combines all three into a well-planned panic attack. Budget trends for weddings have been steadily going up, despite the economic downturn. In fact, the average wedding in the US can cost up to $27,000. There is no short supply of suggestions to make a wedding more budget-friendly, and rightfully so! Imagine what other things can be done with $27,000 to support your new married life. Since disagreements over money is still the number one reason for divorce, a couple approaching matrimony would do well to consider using a lot of that money for their life after the wedding day.

Continue reading
26099 Hits
0 Comments

To drive or not to drive, THAT is the question

To drive or not to drive, THAT is the question

Last week, our van died. It was a cruel, fast death. The head gasket blew, engine light was flashing and the van produced a noxious smell with fumes and smoke. Not pretty. Luckily a friend was able to help me get where I needed to go. Once the dust settled, we got the van towed to a repair shop for an estimate. They estimated $2050. My goodness! Having looked up the selling price of the van, I knew that this repair would cost more than the entire value of the van.

We had some options to weigh:

Continue reading
3558 Hits
0 Comments

Tune Up That Computer Instead of Buying New

Tune Up That Computer Instead of Buying New

A lot of people I know get frustrated with their computers complaining they are slow, and its cumbersome to use the internet, multitask, and do "simple things". A little PC-tuning can go a long way to correcting this situation and save you big bucks if you think the best solution is a new machine. (On top of that, if you don't learn how to solve the problems... your new machine will shortly become in the same state as your older one).

Here are some tips to keeping your (Windows-based) computer humming:

Continue reading
3957 Hits
0 Comments

Turn Down That Hot Water Heater!

Turn Down That Hot Water Heater!

Another savings tip we've used recently.

We just had our hot water heater upgraded to a high-efficiency one, which should save us money on the long term, especially since the replacement and installation was free as part of a promotion from the supplier.

After the heater was installed, we noticed almost immediately that for our showers we had to turn down the water temperature quite a bit to get to a comfortable temperature. The water heater was keeping things too hot. So I adjusted the hot water tank gradually until it was low enough that for showers, we just turn the tempature to full hot. We never need tap water hotter than for our shower comfort level.

This will save us on our natural gas bill as we won't need to maintain that high temperature of water. The savings will not be extreme, but it will make a difference, and the convenience of not having to fiddle with the shower temperature makes it worth it!

1537 Hits
0 Comments

What is your secret talent that could set you free from debt?

What is your secret talent that could set you free from debt?

Switchfoot wrote a song called "Meant To Live". One of the lines says how I feel, I ..."want more than the world has to offer". My goal or dream is to be financially independent and debt free with a lot of family time together. Finding a job that helps that to happen is very challenging. I've been told that my dream is not the norm, so how do I think I could achieve that dream. My friend's comment has left me thinking of how I can achieve more than what the world has to offer/sees as the norm.

I received an inspiring email the other day about Paul Potts. He also had a dream to achieve more than the world has to offer. He was a mobile cell phone salesman, but his dream was to be more than that. Here's a link to a page with two videos. The first video is of his audition for "Britan's Got Talent". And the second video is an interview about some of his journey to achieving his dream.

Continue reading
1737 Hits
0 Comments

How Much Is Your Time Worth to Get a Deal?

How Much Is Your Time Worth to Get a Deal?

While reading through the Money magazine an article stuck out to me, "When Getting a Deal Just Isn't Worth It".  The author gives some great examples through her experience and another friends experience when trying to purchase the perfect car.  The author spent a great many hours searching for the best deal on a big screen TV for her family.  She questioned if she spent her time wisely.

I've debated this very same thing.  When I do my grocery shopping each week I try to plan where I need to go.  I save up a number of purchases for the same store to minimize the amount of time I'm actually out driving and shopping.  I've passed up some deals in the past because the money saved on purchasing the sale item wasn't as great as the value of my time spent getting it.

Continue reading
1747 Hits
0 Comments

Cheap or Thoughtful Gift Giving

Cheap or Thoughtful Gift Giving

My girls just did valentine card exchanges at school. They gave the only homemade cards. The rest were store bought including one from their teacher. I thought it was pretty amazing that my girls gave the only homemade cards. I can also imagine thoughts from the other parents. "Poor things. I guess they don't have any money to buy cards or their family is cheap."

From my point of view, my girls love to be creative and this gives them the perfect opportunity to be creative and crafty (and for a couple of them, get to practice their newly acquired writing skills). We had the supplies needed already, so they cut shapes out from construction paper, folded more in half to make cards, pasted things together, wrote names and "Happy Valentines" on them, doodled pictures and stuck a sticker on here and there. They were very cute. 

Continue reading
2339 Hits
0 Comments

Ads Getting You Hook, Line, and Sinker?

Ads Getting You Hook, Line, and Sinker?

Ads on television, magazines, newspapers, billboards, etc, even the internet, are so cleverly designed to lure us in to buy almost anything. It's often a product unrelated to the lure that is being sold.

This was cleverly put in Money magazine's February issue. They had a seducing image of supermodel,Petra Nemcova, and next to it was the question, "Does she make you want to buy junk bonds?" The source for the section was "Are People More Risk-Taking in the presence of the Opposite Sex?" by Patrick McAlvanah. He had done a study finding that pictures of the opposite sex (attractive/unattractive) increased a person's risk tolerance level.

Continue reading
3008 Hits
0 Comments

Making a Career Out of Cutting Out Coupons

Making a Career Out of Cutting Out Coupons

I just came across a site called http://www.thegrocerygame.com/. It takes the drudgery out of cutting your grocery bill through coupons.

To quote the site The Grocery Game "reveals the 'rock bottom' prices on hundreds of products each week and matches them up with manufacturers' coupons for the best possible savings at your local supermarket".

Continue reading
3815 Hits
0 Comments

Should I really pay for someone else to do my household jobs?

Should I really pay for someone else to do my household jobs?

There's a long list of daily household chores that usually requires more time than we have to dedicate to them. I've debated for a long time if it's worth my money to hire someone for the different chore areas. The hugest chores for me are trying to keep up with the laundry for seven people, and trying to prepare healthy meals while catering to the seven different people's eating likes/dislikes.

Continue reading
2585 Hits
0 Comments

More on Less-expensive Alternatives

More on Less-expensive Alternatives

The excitement of owning NEW big ticket purchases (like a new house or new car) wears off quickly when the bills start coming in. We start to reconsider if the purchase is worth the long haul to pay it off. Was there something else we could have done from the start?

At different times in our life we just need a change in our environment and sometimes think one way to change that is to buy a new house. The alternative they gave was to renovate your current home. Some new wallpaper/ paint or some throw pillows on your couch instead of a whole new set of furniture. We recently went through our things we've collected and passed on things we had too much of or our family had outgrown. This gave us more space to feel not as crowded. We also painted one color throughout the house to make it easier to match things in the house. The house felt so much cleaner after that. Next on our list is getting the carpets cleaned to give us another feeling of bettering our environment. It is an ongoing process.

Occasionally we find items that we can purchase at a fraction of the cost by purchasing from such places as a dollar store instead of from a specialty store. In some cases its a great buy, but in other cases it would be better to go to the specialty store. Quality is sometimes compromised to provide a product at cheaper cost and so, in the long run, we would end up spending more because of having to replace the item every time it broke down.

2281 Hits
0 Comments

What goes around, comes around

What goes around, comes around

Having a goal to become debt-free doesn't mean you stay home and don't do anything. It just means you keep your eyes open for ways to save while enjoying the good things of this earth. I keep an eye open for any sales, hand-me-downs, or other ways to get things at a discounted rate or free. Without expecting anything in return, I offer what I can to others in service or tangible items when I have something to offer. This has the nice effect of increasing my circle of friends and as is so often said, the goodness I send out comes back at me.

On the September long weekend we had the opportunity to help my cousins pack their moving truck for a long move. They were moving such a great distance they wouldn't be able to return to pickup any items that were left behind... everything that was in the house had to go. Whatever didn't make it to the moving truck was going to the dump. Of course, as moves usually go, they were strapped for time and were still packing things as we helped them load the truck. Some of the items being left behind were things their children had outgrown or other large items that just wouldn't be enough space for on the truck or in their new house. Being there to help them move was a teaching opportunity to show our children how fun it can be to give service to other people and not expect anything in return, but be pleasantly surprised when it does happen.

Continue reading
1875 Hits
0 Comments

Saving the World (and my money) with Freebies

Saving the World (and my money) with Freebies

Often, our first thoughts on the topic of being more environmentally friendly are "How much more is it going to cost?" since energy saving items typically cost more. One way to help save the environment, and save your wallet at the same time, is taking advantage of hand-me-downs.

Since we have a large family (5 children and 2 adults), our family has benefited tremendously from hand-me-downs. My wife recently attended a back to school clothes exchange. Somebody was kind enough to bring in some ladies clothes as well so she was able to build up some of her wardrobe too. 

Continue reading
2581 Hits
0 Comments

Provident Living

Provident Living

A new financial preparedness website with sections on budgeting, financial management, emergency preparedness, food storage, and more.

This is a great site with lots of tools to help you stay prepared. It has sections on budgeting, financial management, emergency preparedness, food storage, etc. I haven't been through the whole site, but it seems to contain tons of great info!

2983 Hits
0 Comments
© 2018 CalendarBudget Inc. All Rights Reserved. Terms and Conditions