Most of our posts discuss the ways that people spend money and things that they’ve spent their money on: discount shopping, paying bills, banking, full-body lattes, and so on. Ways to save money lead to much less interesting headlines, but are a key way to slim down your budget. Or to save up for a fun new gadget. We don’t judge. [More]
If you’re looking for an iPhone 5, do you want to pay an extra $450 now, or an extra $1000 over the next two years? Buying an unlocked phone and using a no-contract carrier can give you sticker shock initially, but you can save quite a bit of money in the long run. Our number-crunching colleagues down the hall at Consumer Reports looked into it, and found that if you can pay for your new phone itself out of pocket, going unlocked and contract-free is a much better deal. [More]
When you hear someone mention that stockpiling food and toiletries might be a good idea, it’s not just because they’re watching a “Doomsday Preppers” marathon. I mean, they might be, but that’s not why creating your own grocery stockpile is a good idea. Building your own stash of food and toiletries keeps you prepared for natural disasters and financial crises, and lets you take advantage of stores’ normal sale cycles.
Pick your head up out of that pint of Ben & Jerry’s and step away from the online sales you’ve been clicking through to fill that hole in your heart. A new study claims that when you’re down in the dumps, sad or otherwise singing the blues, you’re more prone to make silly decisions about your money. And come on, you don’t really need another pair of black boots. [More]
Do you have a less than a dozen Thanksgiving guests coming over, but zero culinary skills? Sure, you could go out to eat, or you could order a dinner from a caterer. But if you have under $100 to spend, pick up a pie, and have guests who you either don’t like or who have unsophisticated palates, Costco’s frozen dinner in a box is the holiday dinner option for you. Next year. Because this year, it’s apparently sold out. [More]
The allure of the dollar store for some shoppers is the idea that they will save money compared to what they would spend going to another retailer. But that may not always be the case, especially if you’re buying larger sizes of some products.
Last week, Brian received a package from the ASUS repair center. It was a freshly repaired tablet, the same model that he owns. Except he hadn’t sent his in for repair lately. Someone else’s address appeared on the return merchandise authorization (RMA) form inside the box, but the label on the outside had Brian’s information. He wonders: how much time and money should he invest in getting this package home when Asus doesn’t particularly seem to care?
You might have a good set of tactics while shopping at your local supermarket. But are you savvy to the subtle ways food stores (and other retailers) get you to buy more? There might be a few tricks you’ve fallen prey to in the past.
Yeah, buying generics drugs instead of their snazzy brand name versions could stifle an allergy, calm a nasty cough or banish that throb on the cheap. But at more than half the price?
Some people are so obsessed with their work that they can never envision chucking everything to begin a life of leisure, while others have spent most of their work lives counting the days until they no longer have to clock in. If you opt to jump the gun and call it a career before you hit your golden years, you’re taking a calculated risk, hoping to make your savings stretch out longer rather than spending more time to build it up before you take the plunge.
The bad news: Someone passed a bum personal check to you as a payment. The good news: Your homeowners insurance policy might cover you — even if you got stiffed with bogus cash.
If you pulled in more money than you’re used to making — especially if it came from untaxed work — you could be facing a higher-than-expected tax bill that will grow even higher due to a prepayment penalty of 3 or 4 percent if you owe more than $1,000. There’s not much you can do to avoid the penalty for your 2011 taxes, but you can take steps to avoid it next time.
Some workout enthusiasts rationalize paying a lot of money for gym memberships by telling themselves that the financial commitment makes them work out more often to get their money’s worth. That’s just crazy talk. If you work at it, you can trim your monthly membership fees along with your waistline.
There are countless ways to wind up in the red, and many of them start with the best of intentions. Seemingly smart investments, luxury purchases you thought you could afford and once-in-a-lifetime vacation deals can all place you in the chokehold of compound interest.
Your phone is not only a lifeline, entertainment device and communication portal to everyone you know, but it’s also a siphon that sucks money out of you monthly. Phone companies are counting on you falling into complacency with paying for unneeded services.
Credit cards are tools that can make your life easier and give you more financial power, but they also provide a quick path to financial ruin. It’s important to use common sense when wielding the massive buying power that plastic provides, especially if you’ve just started using credit.
One way to cut down on gas and electricity use is to abandon your dryer in favor of a clothesline. That’s easier said than done, however, because the old-fashioned method poses a bunch of negatives.