On Our Radar! I happily present you three products that I am obsessed with this week that help you get your financial house in order, keep your beauty blunders at a minimum, and keep your words articulately chic! FINANCIAL CENTS EasyMoney … Continue reading
I woke up in a weird mood this past Saturday. I was torn between excited to tackle my never-ending to-do list and not wanting to leave the warmth of the bed. So what did I do?- A little of both. I grabbed the laptop and started to audit my flow of income and in doing so, I noticed I was missing opportunities to save more money. Before breakfast, I saved a little under $100 a year by cancelling my cell phone insurance. It was one of those things that I should have done months ago, but never really got around to doing it. The two times that I actually thought about filing an insurance claim, the deductible was so expensive that it was better to just get a new phone and not having to worry about whether I would receive a new or refurbished phone from my carrier.
My first savings of the day energized me, so much so, that I called my dad to follow-up on his savings audit I did for him last year. Even when I showed my dad how he could save $1600, he actually never followed through. It was time for me to take matters into my own hands. I started with my parents’ home phone and internet bundle and I cancelled every service that they don’t use and wouldn’t miss. I reduced their monthly bill by $40 per month equalling to about $480 a year!
Are you overpaying for services you no longer use?
Take a little time to review your statements from your service providers. Remove extra services that you no longer use, are outdated, or that qualify as a luxury you could live without. I did this a few months ago when I realized my cable bill included a football package. It made NO sense/cents for me to pay for an added luxury that I didn’t even use. Now, I am enjoying the savings more than missing the extra channels. If, by chance, you have already eliminated every extra fee, then you should consider calling your service provider to see if there are any other discounts that can be applied to your account. It may take a little time to get through your audit, but remember it’s better to spend some time to save some money!
What Services Can You Remove From Your Bill to Save?
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During the infancy of She Makes Cents, I started reading Shoo…Jimmy Choo by Catey Hill. This, I admit, was another book I picked up because I like the title. In it, Hill goes beyond the standard advice to create a spending chart and record everything you spend your money on in it. She adds the recommendation to also include additional information such as who was with you and the motivation behind your purchase. I did this for about two months and learned that I often spent extra money when I was with one particular close friend. I usually spent money on expensive lunches and after reviewing the spending chart, my motivation behind my spending was purely emotional. I didn’t realize that was I was spending a great deal of money simply because I missed hanging out with her like I did when I was in college. Fast forward almost two years later where I started repeating the pattern of emotional and socially inspired spending. With my current job, I got back into the habit of frequently going out to lunch with the girls. I didn’t want to miss the great conversations but most importantly, I didn’t want to appear anti-social.
At the start of the year, something clicked for the Mr and me. Our view on how we spend money as a couple and individually has narrowed. We have become super serious about saving and making better decisions on how we spend our money. Does that mean no lunches with the girls? Absolutely not! It does mean that I won’t be going with them EVERY DAY for lunch or drinks after work, though. Instead I am cooking more at home and packing more lunches. As much as I hate to decline a social invitation, I would hate it more if the collective whole of my socially motivated financial decisions were the reason I wasn’t truly living a fabulous debt free life. I am proud of myself. I find that I’m eating better and cleaner. I also becoming a better cook, which is always a plus, but more importantly, I have learned to say no to social and yes to finances!
What Have You Had to Say No To?
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Yesterday Target today announced plans to price match top online retailers year-round, including Amazon.com, Walmart.com, BestBuy.com and Toysrus.com (including Babiesrus.com). Target stores will also price match items found on Target.com. The new policy, which takes effect immediately, will combine Target’s previous price adjustment and competitor ad match policies into one simple, easy-to-use Price Match Policy that now includes select online retailers. If a guest buys a qualifying item at a Target store and then finds the identical item for less in the following week’s Target circular or within seven days on Target.com, Amazon.com, Walmart.com, Bestbuy.com or Toysrus.com or in a local competitor’s printed ad, Target will match the price. “Guests can confidently shop at Target every day for the best value in retail,” said Gregg Steinhafel, Target Chairman, President and CEO. “We know that our guests often compare prices online. With our new Price Match Policy and the additional five percent savings guests receive when they use their REDcard, Target provides an unbeatable value.” Target introduced its first price match policy, the Low Price Promise, in 2009 and began matching select online competitors for the first time this holiday season. Price match may be requested at Target’s Guest Services prior to a purchase with proof of current price or by bringing the original Target receipt and proof of current price.
For more information about price match at Target, click here
Click here for update and a “remix” to this MONEY CHALLENGE!
Today I was introduced to the 52 Week Money Challenge by a fellow blogger, DLWinfrey from Pretty Girls Rock Dresses (PGRDresses). The challenge is to make a weekly deposit that reflects the number of weeks of the year. For example on week one you deposit $1.00 and on week 27 you deposit $27.00 and so on. It sort of reminds me of when I was little and my big brother would give me money that corresponded with my age ($5.00 for my fifth birthday and $10 for my tenth birthday). This is week one of 2013, so if you are interested, you better put your dollar to the side. I plan on using the money saved throughout the year for holiday purchases and paying down credit card debt. Just think, by this time next year, I could have saved $1,378 just by participating in this challenge. While I don’t know who came up with this challenge, I do thank them. It’s easy, it’s fun, and it won’t break the back.
What Will You Do With Your Savings?
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Time to dance on the table and drink champagne….oh wait, it’s not even the weekend yet. I just wanted to take this opportunity to say thank you. For those of you who frequent SMC, you may have heard me mention my lastest goal is to set realistic goals. In doing so, I set a goal to hit the one million mark by March 1, 2013 (the 2 year Anniversary for SMC). Needless to say, I was beyond overjoyed when I checked my stats this past Saturday and realized, not only did I hit the million mark, but I surpassed it. It has been amazingly cathartic to create SMC. Over the course of this experience…and it has been an experience, I have posted 355 posts about finances, fashion, and all things fabulous and you’ve been there along the way. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for joining me as I balance finances fabulously. YOU ROCK!
Someone pinned this picture on Pinterest of them dividing their money into different envelops as suggested by financial expert, Dave Ramsey. His explanation of the envelope system was simple and made cents/sense, so I thought I’d share it. My thoughts are in PINK, of course. … Continue reading
I love saving money! I mean really, when you think about it, why would you pay full price when there is the option to pay less? As of this morning, there are $237.80 worth of savings on Target.com that are available for you to print. You can further your savings by combining them with manufacturers coupons.
To start saving now, click here!
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This morning I replied to the question,What lifestyle changes have you made in our “new” economy? Here is my reply:
Creating the blog She Makes Cents, has been one way were I am held accountable for my financial decision…since I’m blogging about it. In our “new” economy and for research for my site, I now do the following:
- I make spending and saving goals for the month. Then I tell the people around me my goals. That way, when I start to slip or go regress to old habits, I have a support system to help keep me on track.
- I am notorious for going to restaurants multiple times a week. I now make sure I eat before leaving the house and I pack fruit and random snacks in my bag. That way, when I start to get “snacky” I don’t have to make a trip to the vending machine, closet Chick-fil-A, or restaurant.
- I track my spending. EVERYTHING! I tried it because of a suggestion from this financial writer. It really adds some perspective to your spending habits and it made/makes me think hard about my purchases and the motivation/emotion behind them. (You can download the original template I used from author Catey Hill, here).
- I opened an alternate email account and I send email coupons and store sign ups here.
Before I go out, I check out Groupon Now, HalfOffDepot.com, & Living Social. Why pay full price when you can get a better deal on the same product and service?
This question got me thinking about you SMC readers.
What changes have you made, if any, in our “new” economy?
Have you benefitted from any advice you read on here?
I’d love to hear from YOU!
It’s Operation Wedding time here at the She Makes Cents headquarters (aka my home office). This weekend my sister is getting married. Please stay tuned for a Wedding version of Buy v. DIY. I would give you a little sneak peek, but that will reveal aspects of the wedding. For the next few days, postings could be few as we prepare for the Wedding and the introduction of a few guest writers and SMC’s first intern!!!
What did you DIY for your wedding?