Tag Archives: BUDGETING

20 Lazy Ways To Save Money

by Katie Adams

While the media can’t decide if the recession is nearing its end or not, we do know that there hasn’t been a tremendous surge in wages, job creation or the stock market. Consequently, most of us are staying pretty conservative on our spending. Here are a few relatively simple ways to keep an eye on your pennies while you’re waiting for that brighter economic future to arrive.

  1. Schedule automatic payments. Have (at least) your fixed monthly bills paid automatically to avoid missing a payment and having to fork over extra money for late fees and/or interest. You can set up auto pay features through your bank’s online bill paying service or by arranging it directly with the company or service provider. (Automation can be a painless and free way to remove the stress of bill scheduling from your life – if you do it right. Learn more by reading Automating Your Bill Payments.)
  2. Eat your groceries. Did you know that Americans regularly throw away nearly 15% of the food they buy at the grocery store each year? That can add up to hundreds or, depending on your supermarket budget, thousands of dollars each year. Save money by actually eating what you buy. Not sure how? Bypass the bookstore and borrow a cookbook from the library!
  3. Bundle services. If you’re paying different vendors for similar services you may be overpaying. Call your communications providers to see what price you’ll be quoted if you switch and bundle your internet, phone and cable TV services.
  4. Pay off credit card. If you’re not paying off your credit card balance each month you’re paying interest and, for most Americans, it’s a pretty steep rate. Pay it off and you could save a tidy sum by eliminating your interest charges. (Managing your debt could mean the difference between spending $45,000 or saving $184,000. Read Expert Tips For Cutting Credit Card Debt.)
  5. Mark your calendar. Whenever you rent something – library books, videos, etc. – mark it on your calendar and save money by avoiding those quickly mounting late fees. Many stores and libraries also now offer email reminders to help the constantly harried so sign up for the extra help!
  6. File your taxes on time. Or if you need to file an extension at least pay what you owe on the due date. You’ll avoid annoying notices from the IRS and, more importantly, save on penalties, fees and interest. (These schemes can lead to fines – and even jail time – for both the scammer and his victims. Check out Avoiding Tax Scams.)
  7. Roll it over. If you’re switching jobs and you can’t leave your 401(k) invested with your current company, roll your 401(k) into either your new employer’s 401(k) or an IRA within the 60-day window instead of withdrawing the money. By doing so you’ll keep the money invested – and earning interest – and avoid those nasty taxes as well as the additional 10% penalty. (To learn more, read Know The Rules For Roth 401(k) Rollovers.)
  8. Switch credit cards. If you’re carrying a balance on a high interest rate credit card check out other card issuers to see if you could transfer your balance to one with a lower interest rate and fewer fees. Use sites like Creditcard.com or Bankrate.com to compare card rates, and pay careful attention to how long those terms last so you don’t wind up paying a higher rate and erasing any potential savings.
  9. Use your privileges. Are you an AAA member? Do you belong to the AARP? What about your local credit union? Check organizations you have memberships with to see if they offer buying privileges or discounts.
  10. Rent instead of buy. You might be excited to expand your driveway but don’t let your enthusiasm overtake good sense. Hold off on buying that jackhammer and think before you spend on big-ticket items or items that you’ll use once or infrequently (like movies and books).
  11. Continue reading

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The Best Christmas Present You Could Buy For The Family


Simply Fantastic: Living Better on Less makes a perfect Christmas gift for any and all the members of your family. It’s easy to read, has interesting, sometimes funny, anecdotes from my life in the working world and as a wife and mother sprinkled throughout the book, providing readers with real-world examples of how to become financially free. You can open it up to any page and find a strategy or tip to save money.

Not a heavy-duty financial book Simply Fantastic is a good, easy to read, educational book for all ages. From new graduates and young couples to working families and retirees, Simply Fantastic is the go-to guide for anyone trying to save money and improve their financial outlook, all while living a better life.

Brimming with optimism and humor, Simply Fantastic is a valuable guide to financial responsibility for all ages.

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