Budgeting http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/4804/all en-US 6 Ways Gluttony Is Keeping You Poor http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-gluttony-is-keeping-you-poor <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-ways-gluttony-is-keeping-you-poor" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_56582268_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="gluttony keeps you poor" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>This installment in our <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/seven-deadly-sins">series of deadly sins</a> speaks to gluttony, and it's important to know how it differs from greed. The two are related, but greed is more of a miserly, selfish sin. You hoard. You acquire. You amass wealth. Gluttony, that's a different animal. Fundamentally, it's all about self-control, or the lack of it. You eat more than you should. Drink more. Spend more. Want more. Waste more. And as you are about to see, gluttony can also keep you poor.</p> <h2>1. You're Buying Way Too Much Food and Drink</h2> <p>Let's start with the most obvious place that you're losing money, and that's on food and drink. If you are a real glutton, you're going to be spending a huge portion of your income on what goes in the fridge and the pantry. Food, food, glorious food, but, way too much of it. From overloading the cart when you go to the grocery store, to eating the whole pizza when a quarter of it would have been fine, your indulgence in food and drink is costing you big bucks.</p> <p>One of the best ways to deal with this is to limit portion sizes by using smaller plates, and to shop using a list of <em>only</em> the items needed. Also, don't go back for seconds when you can save that food and have it as a meal the day after.</p> <h2>2. Your Over-Indulgence Is Affecting Your Health</h2> <p>Directly related to eating and drinking too much is health care costs. It's widely-known that the costs for treating obesity in this country are staggering. Medical costs alone come to over $192 billion in the U.S. alone, and that is only continuing to rise. When you're obese, or just overweight, you are increasing the risk of getting many diseases and conditions, including: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, stroke, sleep apnea, some cancers, depression, gallbladder disease, osteoarthritis, and body aches and pains.</p> <p>While some conditions are more serious than others, if you get them, you're talking about paying for doctor's office visits, hospital stays, medications, and therapy (both physical and mental). As the cost of health care skyrockets, you do not want to be paying more and more every year because you lack self-control. It's not always easy to hold back, and diets are no fun. But the alternatives are not just expensive, they can be deadly.</p> <h2>3. Your TV Habits Keep You From Reaching Your Potential</h2> <p>A new phrase entered our vocabularies over the last few years: &quot;binge-watching.&quot; It is the TV equivalent of eating an entire pizza in one sitting, and although it may not be as bad for your health as that kind of gluttonous act, it's also not doing you any favors.</p> <p>Sure, bingeing the occasional show every now and then is fine. But if you find yourself bingeing series after series, week after week, you are spending way too much time in front of the TV.</p> <p>This leads to &quot;checking out&quot; of more healthy activities, like hiking, cycling, swimming, gardening, and spending time with friends. And it also hinders your career and lifestyle. What else could you be doing with that time? Could you be studying to get a promotion or raise? Could you be organizing your finances? Think about the time spent in front of the TV, and how cutting back could make a difference.</p> <h2>4. Binge-Drinking Can Be Dangerous</h2> <p>Although binge-watching is a new term, binge-drinking has been around for centuries. In certain cultures, especially England (where I'm from), binge-drinking seems to be an accepted part of life. You work hard during the week, then on Friday and Saturday nights you go out and get absolutely hammered. And you can spend a lot of money doing it.</p> <p>The physical effects of binge-drinking are bad enough. Too much alcohol can put a lot of stress on your heart, stop your breathing, affect your memory, or make you vomit in your sleep (many people have died this way). But when drunk, you can do things that have a negative impact on your home life, and your career. It is not uncommon for people to be fired after saying or doing things on a night out that they would never do sober. In this day and age, you could seriously damage your career after a binge-drinking night on the town.</p> <h2>5. More Food Means More Waste</h2> <p>Aside from spending large amounts on food and drink, there is another byproduct of shopping for too much grub. Waste.</p> <p>Gluttonous habits in grocery stores can lead to you filling the shopping cart with items you want because they look good. Without sticking to a shopping list, you can easily pile your cart high with items you don't need, and stack them in the pantry and fridge with little hope of eating them before they expire. That is literally cash in the trash. So buy what you need, and what you can freeze &mdash; no more. Even if it's a crazy good deal, spending only $5 on a prime piece of steak is not a savings if the steak then expires and goes in the garbage.</p> <h2>6. Impulse Purchases and Deals Are a False Economy</h2> <p>Most of us love a good bargain. But without self-control, the dazzling deals you see getting served up every day can drain your bank account, and lead to spiraling debt. Remember, deals are only deals if you needed the item in the first place.</p> <p>For example, if you're looking for a new washing machine, and see an ad offering one for 30% off, then congratulations, you found a great deal. But if, at the same time, you see a dishwasher on sale for 30% off, but your current one is just fine, then that's not a bargain. That's just gluttony. You see it. You like it. You want it. You buy it. It doesn't just apply to the big-ticket items, either. Grocery stores use techniques to erode your self-control (like buying 10 items for a $1 each, when you only need two costing $1.50 each). Before you know it, you're over-budget, and stockpiling a lot of items that may never get used. So, before you act, think. Do I need it, or do I just want it because it's on sale?</p> <p><em>What other gluttonous habits are keeping you poor? Share with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-gluttony-is-keeping-you-poor">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-apps-that-make-budgeting-fun-no-really">7 Apps That Make Budgeting Fun — No Really!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-apps-for-busy-working-parents">The 5 Best Apps for Busy Working Parents</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-money-lessons-to-take-from-the-great-depression">9 Money Lessons to Take From the Great Depression</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-72-brilliant-ways-to-stretch-20">Flashback Friday: 72 Brilliant Ways to Stretch $20</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-pride-is-keeping-you-poor">7 Ways Pride Is Keeping You Poor</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Budgeting glutton gluttony money money management poor saving money seven deadly sins Thu, 25 Aug 2016 09:00:05 +0000 Paul Michael 1778985 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Sneaky Vacation Costs That Add Up Quickly http://www.wisebread.com/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_75848571_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="sneaky vacation costs" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>We all love going away on vacation, but we don't love the costs associated with it. Usually, the big costs are taken into account before leaving the house &mdash; the hotel, the flight, the attractions, even the rental car. But what we often forget about are the little costs that can eat into the budget before your plane even takes off. Here are 10 of the biggest offenders, with a little advice on cutting down these last-minute expenses.</p> <h2>1. Check-In Fees</h2> <p>Most of us check-in way ahead of time to avoid lines at the airport. However, more airlines are starting to charge for different aspects of this service, knowing that you would rather pay a fee than leave it to the last minute. In some instances, you will be charged for the convenience of checking-in online. Amazingly, there may even be a cost for printing a boarding pass (currently Spirit charges $10 if you have one printed at the check-in counter), so look for options that are free (like printing yours at home, or using an app). (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-airline-miles-secrets-only-frequent-flyers-know?ref=seealso">5 Airline Miles Secrets Only Frequent Flyers Know</a>)</p> <h2>2. Checked or Carry-On Luggage Fees</h2> <p>If you've flown anywhere in the last few years, you probably noticed how insanely full the overhead luggage compartments were. That's because people got wise to the checked baggage fees, and started bringing even more carry-on luggage instead. In fact, you'd often see flight attendants asking for carry-on bags to be checked free, due to space issues. However, recent carry-on fees (which are usually more than checked baggage fees) have reversed that trend. Now, there's plenty of room in the cabin, because once again, people are looking for the cheapest option. So, even if you have a bag that's carry-on-sized, look at the prices. It may be cheaper to check it.</p> <h2>3. Overweight Luggage Charges</h2> <p>This one can really bite you at the last minute. If your bag weighs more than 50 pounds, you will pay a penalty, and this can vary depending on the airline. For instance, Frontier will charge you $75, whereas American Airlines tacks on a whopping $200! Sometimes, you can do some quick swapping between bags to get them all under 50 pounds, but if that's not an option, you may find it cheaper to leave some items at the airport (give them away, trash them) rather than pay the hefty fee.</p> <p>A good way to avoid this is to buy a luggage scale and weigh your luggage before you ever get to the airport. Bring it with you, too. You may also want to pack a light extra bag that you can use in an emergency. Usually, the additional bag fee is cheaper than the overweight bag charge. Or, try <a href="https://www.luggageforward.com/excess-baggage-fees/">Luggage Forward,</a> which ships your bags to and from your destination.</p> <h2>4. Seat Selection</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5170/seat_selection.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>If you're happy with any old seat on the plane, you usually don't have to worry. But if you would like to choose your seat (and if you're not traveling alone, you will most likely want to sit next to the person you're flying with), you'll be faced with a variety of costs. These costs get much higher as you move toward the front of the plane, where there is extra legroom, or if you want to sit in an exit row. Some airlines, like Spirit, will charge you for an advanced seat assignment, no matter where it is on the plane, so you may want to wait until you get to the check-in counter.</p> <h2>5. Food</h2> <p>When you're on vacation, you don't think much about food on the way to your destination. But remember, you're a captive audience in an airport. And when you're hungry or thirsty, you'll pay big bucks. Airport food is always more expensive than it is elsewhere, and when you're traveling as a family, those costs add up quickly. On the plane, it's even worse, with in-flight meals now costing upward of $10 for something quite meager. So before you leave, try and eat a good meal to keep you going through the airport and flight.</p> <h2>6. Parking</h2> <p>If you park at the airport, you won't be paying for this until you return. But make sure you budget for it, because it can really add up (especially at a garage parking, which can run over $20 a day). Instead, look at off-airport parking, which is cheaper and can be paid for in advance. These places offer valet, and covered and uncovered parking, with free shuttles to and from the airport. Most offer coupons and discounts as well, so do a little research before you book. You can get your parking down to $5 a day if you're smart.</p> <h2>7. Car Transportation</h2> <p>If you decide to take a taxi to the airport, you will save on parking fees, but you'll replace them with cab fares. An airport run is often a standard fee for most cab companies, and usually comes with the &quot;airport access fee&quot; tacked on. Depending on where you live in relation to the airport, you can easily spend $75 on a one-way trip, and that does not include the tip. Services like Lyft and Uber are cheaper (although watch out for the surge pricing with Uber), and you can also find car services that specialize in airport runs.</p> <h2>8. Currency Exchange</h2> <p>If you're traveling out of the country, you'll want to turn your dollars into cash you can use when you arrive. And that costs money. Depending where and when you do it, the service fee and poor exchange rate could really cost you. <em>Do not</em> exchange your money at the airport. It's the worst place to do it because it's the most convenient. Instead, order the cash from your own bank way ahead of time, or use a reputable online service. If you can, bring a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/smarter-security-and-no-foreign-transaction-fees-the-best-credit-cards-to-use-while-on-vacation?utm_source=wisebread&amp;utm_medium=internal&amp;utm_campaign=travel">credit card with no foreign transaction fees</a> with you. It'll really help.</p> <h2>9. Visa Fees</h2> <p>Depending on your destination, you will have to purchase visas to enter the country. For instance, right now U.S. passport holders are required to pay a <a href="http://www.mychinavisa.com/rates/">$140 fee per visa to enter China</a>. That's almost $600 for a family of four, which really adds a lot onto the cost of the vacation. You could choose to visit a country that does not require a visa. There are currently 38 countries in the Visa Waiver Program, so if you pick one of those, you don't have to worry about this fee.</p> <h2>10. Carry-On Friendly Items</h2> <p>If you're planning to bring toiletries and similar personal items on the plane with you, get ready to go shopping. The restrictions are quite clear: You can bring a quart-sized bag of essentials, but each liquid, aerosol or gel is <a href="https://www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening/liquids-rule">restricted to just 3.4 ounces</a>. If you bring expensive perfume or cologne, and it's bigger than 3.4 ounces, it will be confiscated.</p> <p><em>What are some other sneaky vacation fees to look out for? Share with us!</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this post? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F10%20Sneaky%20Vacation%20Costs%20That%20Add%20Up%20Quickly.jpg&amp;description=10%20Sneaky%20Vacation%20Costs%20That%20Add%20Up%20Quickly" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/10%20Sneaky%20Vacation%20Costs%20That%20Add%20Up%20Quickly.jpg" width="250" height="374" alt="" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-fool-proof-ways-to-stay-within-your-travel-budget">7 Fool-Proof Ways to Stay Within Your Travel Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-reasons-you-should-check-your-luggage">7 Reasons You Should Check Your Luggage</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-easy-ways-to-budget-for-summer-vacation">7 Easy Ways to Budget for Summer Vacation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds">10 Flight Booking Hacks to Save You Hundreds</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Travel air travel expenses fees flying Food luggage parking travel budget vacation vacation costs Tue, 16 Aug 2016 10:30:12 +0000 Paul Michael 1773244 at http://www.wisebread.com Flashback Friday: 50 Money Moves You Need to Make When Big Changes Happen http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-50-money-moves-you-need-to-make-when-big-changes-happen <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/flashback-friday-50-money-moves-you-need-to-make-when-big-changes-happen" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_holding_cash_91828121.jpg" alt="Woman making money moves when big changes happen" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You wanna win at life? Be flexible. Learn how to adapt to change. Because life is long and change is inevitable. And when you're facing a major shift in your daily routine, it might be time to reevaluate your money. Here are all the money moves you need to make when big changes happen.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/iStock_000077659843_Large.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-financial-moves-to-make-the-moment-you-get-fired?ref=fbf">11 Financial Moves to Make the Moment You Get Fired</a> &mdash; Getting fired sucks, and at some point, it happens to a lot of us. Lessen the blow by being financially prepared in case you walk into work one day and walk out with your stuff in a box.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-money-moves-to-make-the-moment-you-get-a-promotion?ref=fbf">8 Money Moves to Make the Moment You Get a Promotion</a> &mdash; If you work hard and stay focused, chances are you'll get promoted. So when you get a pay bump and a new corner office, make sure your money goals reflect your new success.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/woman_happy_credit_card_000089299163.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-money-moves-to-make-the-moment-your-credit-cards-are-paid-off?ref=fbf">9 Money Moves to Make the Moment Your Credit Cards Are Paid Off</a> &mdash; Reaching debt-free status with your credit cards is everyone's goal, and it's a good one to strive for. So once you reach it, you need to put a plan in place to keep that money momentum going. Otherwise, you'll end up right back where you started.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-money-moves-to-make-the-moment-you-decide-to-retire?ref=fbf">12 Money Moves to Make the Moment You Decide to Retire</a> &mdash; Before you leave the workforce and become an official retiree, examine your savings and confirm that you won't ever have to work again. That's what retirement is all about, right?</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/friends_hands_heart_29104258.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-moves-to-make-the-moment-you-decide-to-get-married?ref=fbf">5 Money Moves to Make the Moment You Decide to Get Married</a> &mdash; Weddings are expensive, and deciding to share your life with another person can bring about all kinds of major money choices. Make sure you're both on the same page, and are set up for a blissful partnership.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-moves-to-make-the-moment-you-decide-to-get-divorced?ref=fbf">5 Money Moves to Make the Moment You Decide to Get Divorced</a> &mdash; Not everyone will end up divorced, but if you find yourself in this boat, it's definitely a good time to make sure your finances are in order. Divorce is stressful and heartbreaking enough, so ensure your financial sanity by planning and protecting yourself from ending up broke.</p> <p><em>What other money moves should you make throughout your life? Share with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chrissa-hardy">Chrissa Hardy</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-50-money-moves-you-need-to-make-when-big-changes-happen">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-47-best-back-to-school-shopping-hacks-ever">Flashback Friday: 47 Best Back-to-School Shopping Hacks Ever</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-45-life-lessons-youd-give-to-your-younger-self">Flashback Friday: 45 Life Lessons You&#039;d Give to Your Younger Self</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-72-brilliant-ways-to-stretch-20">Flashback Friday: 72 Brilliant Ways to Stretch $20</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-49-smartest-amazon-hacks-that-will-save-you-big">Flashback Friday: 49 Smartest Amazon Hacks That Will Save You Big</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-84-reasons-to-be-done-with-summer-and-get-excited-for-fall">Flashback Friday: 84 Reasons to Be Done With Summer and Get Excited for Fall</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Budgeting budgeting fbf finances flashback friday frugal living money moves personal finance smart Fri, 12 Aug 2016 10:00:14 +0000 Chrissa Hardy 1770843 at http://www.wisebread.com 15 Little Known Ways to Save at Disneyland http://www.wisebread.com/15-little-known-ways-to-save-at-disneyland <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/15-little-known-ways-to-save-at-disneyland" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_92789511_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="learning how to save money at disneyland" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Disneyland is considered the &quot;happiest place on Earth,&quot; but if you look at the ticket prices, it is not the happiest place for your budget. Despite the pricey tickets, Disneyland is still a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-reasons-you-should-splurge-on-experiences-not-things">fun and magical place</a> to visit for the whole family. Here are some overlooked tips for enjoying Disneyland on a budget.</p> <h2>1. Be Prepared</h2> <p>We went to Disneyland recently for my four-year-old's birthday. All month, it had been in the high 80s, so we did not think to bring extra clothes. Of course, once we were in the park, the weather was chilly, and my daughter was uncomfortable. We ended up spending $50 on an Elsa sweater to keep her warm.</p> <p>Had we been prepared, we would've brought a sweater so that we wouldn't have had to waste the money. The funny thing is that Costco now has a very similar Elsa sweater for less than $10. I suggest you also bring a change of clothes and maybe even a poncho, especially if your little one loves to go on the water rides.</p> <h2>2. Shop the Wal-Mart or Target Near Disneyland</h2> <p>Wal-Mart and Target near Disneyland both have a lot of Disney memorabilia, clothing, and souvenirs similar to those offered at the parks. The only difference is you'll pay much less at these stores than on Main Street.</p> <h2>3. Use the Disney Credit Card</h2> <p>Disney offers a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/which-disney-credit-card-is-best-for-you">Disney credit card</a> without an annual fee. Having it allows you to access to a special character meet-and-greet area. This card can also offer you discounts on Disney purchases, as well as special rewards for Disney spending.</p> <h2>4. Get a Multiday Pass</h2> <p>If you're going to experience Disneyland, <em>really </em>experience it. A one-day ticket for just Disneyland can cost $95-$119 per adult, depending on the day you go. However, a three-day park hopper ticket costs $295 per adult, which allows you to visit both Disneyland and California Adventure, as well as expand your trip over three days.</p> <h2>5. Go Offseason</h2> <p>Not only are offseason tickets lower in price, but it's also a more enjoyable time to go. Check the <a href="http://www.isitpacked.com/disneyland-crowd-forecast-predictor-calendar/">Is It Packed? calendar </a>to get a better idea of when to visit. Try to pick a &quot;ghost town&quot; day to really enjoy the park.</p> <h2>6. Consider the Season Pass</h2> <p>The season pass prices start at $329 per person and grant admission to both parks for the full year. With the lowest level of the season pass, there are quite a few blackout days. However, if you visit the park at least four days, you would have already saved money. I live an hour and a half away from Disneyland, and I know many families that take advantage of this deal, usually going once or twice a month. For the Disney lover, season passes are a great deal, but if you're on a strict budget, the season pass might not be for you. Not only will you have the cost of the passes, but you must also factor in gas, parking, and food expenses as well.</p> <h2>7. Bring a DIY Autograph Book</h2> <p>Autograph books are a lot of fun for kids. You can either find a discounted Disney autograph book, or you can make your own. You can even find a small, cute notebook at the dollar store and decorate it with Disney stickers.</p> <p>If you are a little more tech-savvy, you can collect signatures on an iPad or tablet device with a touch screen pen. This will then allow you to upload them alongside pictures from your trip into a digital file that you can then use to create your own Disney scrapbook.</p> <h2>8. Buy a Photopass or Use Photopass Photographer</h2> <p>We opted into getting the Photopass day pass for $39, so that we didn't have to lug our camera around. It was extremely convenient, and now we have over 30 pictures from our special trip available to download. You can also choose to skip the pass and just ask the photographers in the Photopass locations to take your photo for you with your phone or camera.</p> <h2>9. Download the Disneyland App</h2> <p>The free Disneyland app is extremely useful to use in the park. It will tell you the wait times of rides and attractions, as well as show you locations of characters and Photopass spots.</p> <h2>10. Bring Your Own Snacks</h2> <p>The rules of outside food and drinks is not the clearest, however, my diaper bag of snacks and water were not looked down upon when we went. Disneyland is very accommodating for individuals with special dietary needs. Bring your own water bottles and light snacks, and if you're hungry for more, just leave the park for a bit and eat at a nearby restaurant.</p> <h2>11. Stay in a Budget Hotel</h2> <p>The hotels closest to the park are pricey, but there are many other affordable hotels within a five-mile radius. Most also offer affordable shuttle rides to the park so you can avoid paying for parking.</p> <h2>12. Pay With Disney Gift Cards</h2> <p>Paying with Disney gift cards will allow you to save more on ticket prices, souvenirs, and food at the park. You can even find Disney gift cards for up to 9% off at <a href="https://www.giftcardgranny.com/buy-gift-cards/disney-store/">Gift Card Granny</a>.</p> <h2>13. Use a SoCal City Pass</h2> <p>The <a href="http://www.citypass.com/southern-california">SoCal City Pass</a> is a great deal for $341 per adults. The pass includes three-day admission to both Disney parks, as well as admission to SeaWorld and Legoland.</p> <h2>14. Special Discounted Tickets</h2> <p>Disneyland offers special ticket discounts to several different groups of people, including active military, teachers, credit union members, and even college students. Check with your place of employment to see if you can buy discounted tickets. Through my husband's work benefits, we are able to save $10 per ticket.</p> <h2>15. Take Kids Before Three</h2> <p>Kids under three years old can visit for free, and this goes for one-day tickets and annual pass holders alike. My friends have twin daughters, and they took advantage of owning season passes before their daughters turned three. Therefore, every time they went, it cost about $35&ndash;$50 per trip, factoring in how often they went and the extra gas they had to pay for.</p> <p><em>How do you save money at Disneyland? Share with us!</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this post? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F15-little-known-ways-to-save-at-disneyland&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F15%20Little%20Known%20Ways%20to%20Save%20at%20Disneyland.jpg&amp;description=15%20Little%20Known%20Ways%20to%20Save%20at%20Disneyland" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/15%20Little%20Known%20Ways%20to%20Save%20at%20Disneyland.jpg" width="250" height="374" alt="" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-eneriz">Ashley Eneriz</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-little-known-ways-to-save-at-disneyland">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-15-road-trip-snacks-make-it-all-about-the-journey">These 15 Road Trip Snacks Make It All About the Journey</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-budget-friendly-beach-destinations">6 Budget-Friendly Beach Destinations</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-rules-thatll-save-you-big-in-babys-first-year">5 Money Rules That&#039;ll Save You Big in Baby&#039;s First Year</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-ways-to-save-and-make-money-while-traveling">12 Ways to Save and Make Money While Traveling</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-use-new-toys-to-teach-kids-about-money">How to Use New Toys to Teach Kids About Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Family Travel Disney Disneyland family fun family vacation saving money saving money at disneyland savings hacks Thu, 11 Aug 2016 10:00:07 +0000 Ashley Eneriz 1766248 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Apps That Make Budgeting Fun — No Really! http://www.wisebread.com/7-apps-that-make-budgeting-fun-no-really <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-apps-that-make-budgeting-fun-no-really" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_87637919_LARGE.jpg" alt="making budgeting fun with these apps" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Budgeting is not just essential for those who are trying to squeeze two pennies out of one. Tracking expenses and setting spending and savings goals is beneficial for anyone &mdash; no matter the amount of your paycheck.</p> <p>However, tracking every expenditure on paper or through a spreadsheet can be tedious and even cause us to forgo the healthy habit of budgeting a month in. These apps will take the pain and boredom from budgeting, and you might even have fun in the process. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/one-simple-thing-you-can-do-to-start-budgeting-today?ref=seealso">One Simple Thing You Can Do to Start Budgeting Today</a>)</p> <h2>1. Pennies</h2> <p>One of the best things about using Pennies for iOS is that it allows a lot of flexibility. Many people do not work with a set salary and do not know their paycheck amount each pay period. Pennies allows users to create budgets that can be set for weekly, monthly, one-off, or payday budgets.</p> <p>Another benefit of this simple-to-use app is that you are presented with daily targets of what to spend and how your next day spending will be affected. Knowing a $5 latte will make your budget tight tomorrow might help you forgo unnecessary splurges.</p> <p>($1.99<a href="https://itunes.apple.com/app/apple-store/id916741290?mt=8"> iOS</a>)</p> <h2>2. Prosper Daily</h2> <p>How about a little competition? Prosper Daily is a free app that allows users to compete with their previous month's budget to see if they can do better in the current month. The app also connects to financial accounts and tracks spending effortlessly. There is no need to document every expenditure.</p> <p>Another benefit of Prosper Daily is that the app can protect users from suspicious account activity or duplicate charges. Since it is free, it is a smart idea to download this app just to use it for the account safeguarding feature alone.</p> <p>Note: Prosper Daily used to be known as &quot;BillGuard.&quot;</p> <p>(Free<a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/billguard-money-tracking-credit/id602710567?mt=8"> iOS</a>,<a href="https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.billguard.android&amp;hl=en"> Android</a>)</p> <h2>3. CoinKeeper</h2> <p>The envelope system of budgeting is clever, but it can be such a hassle to use. Who wants to carry around different envelopes of cash everywhere with them? CoinKeeper allows users the same benefits of budget envelopes, but all at their fingertips. This is a great financial tool for tactile learners, since users can move coins and designate an amount to each area of their budget.</p> <p>(Classic version $5.99<a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/coinkeeper-classic-personal/id471262606?mt=8"> iOS</a>, Free version<a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/coinkeeper-personal-finance/id849747345?mt=8"> iOS</a>,<a href="https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.disrapp.coinkeeper.material&amp;hl=en"> Android</a>)</p> <h2>4. Digit</h2> <p>Waiting until the end of the month to deposit leftover money into a savings account is unwise. Usually, there is no money left by the end of the month. Instead, use an app like Digit to sock away a little bit of money throughout the month.</p> <p>The app cleverly connects to a user's checking accounts and looks for opportunities to transfer $5&ndash;$50 every two to three days to that user's savings account. However, you will not have to worry about overdraft fees, since the app never takes more than you can afford. The app also comes with a no-overdraft guarantee, which means the company will cover the fee up to two times per member.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-budgeting-skills-everyone-should-master?ref=seealso">11 Budgeting Skills Everyone Should Master</a></p> <p>(Free<a href="https://digit.co/"> iOS</a>)</p> <h2>5. Toshl</h2> <p>Monsters on a budgeting app? Yes, Toshl uses fun creatures and bright colors on its app interface. Toshl is a favorite app among many because it integrates with phone, tablet, and desktop devices. Toshl is easy to use and offers bill reminders, monthly budget summaries, as well as an easy way to export tracking to Excel.</p> <p>(Free<a href="https://itunes.apple.com/app/toshl-finance/id921590251?mt=8"> iOS</a>,<a href="https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.thirdframestudios.android.expensoor"> Android</a>)</p> <h2>6. BUDGT</h2> <p>Don't let variable income keep you from keeping track of how much you make and how much you spend. BUDGT works well with variable income and allows you to easily input expenses and track how much money is left. The best part is that the app is simple and easy to use. It might take a few days to get into the habit of inputting your expenses, but once you get used to it, it can be a healthy habit to transform your spending.</p> <p>($1.99<a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/budgt/id580812126?mt=8"> iOS</a>)</p> <h2>7. Mvelopes</h2> <p>Similar to CoinKeeper, Mvelopes is a digital version of envelope-based budgeting. The free version can be downloaded on iOS and Android phones, but to get the full, deluxe version, there will be a one-time $95 cost. It will take a little bit of learning time to get into the method of zero-based budgeting. The idea behind this way of budgeting is that every dollar has a designation. This prevents money from being spent thoughtlessly.</p> <p>If you look at your bank account at the end of the month and see an extra $50, you might mistake it as &quot;free&quot; money and spend it foolishly. With an envelope system, that $50 would have been categorized into savings or even designated towards books or clothing. It is important to give your money a job, or it will be useless to you.</p> <p>The best budgeting app is the one that is used. If you are serious about making budgeting a regular habit, then you need to find the right tool to work for you. Everyone is different, so if the first app you try doesn't fit your needs or tastes, don't worry. Just try something else.</p> <p>(Free <a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/mvelopes-budget-app-envelope/id417933753?mt=8">iOS</a>,<a href="https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.finicity.mvelopes&amp;hl=en"> Android</a>)</p> <p><em>What is your favorite budget app to use? Share with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-eneriz">Ashley Eneriz</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-apps-that-make-budgeting-fun-no-really">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-apps-for-busy-working-parents">The 5 Best Apps for Busy Working Parents</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-your-smartphone-saves-you-money">8 Ways Your Smartphone Saves You Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-gluttony-is-keeping-you-poor">6 Ways Gluttony Is Keeping You Poor</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-5-apps-will-help-you-finally-organize-your-money">These 5 Apps Will Help You Finally Organize Your Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-couponing-apps">The 10 Best Couponing Apps</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Technology apps managing money money management phone phone apps saving money smartphone Wed, 10 Aug 2016 09:00:10 +0000 Ashley Eneriz 1769235 at http://www.wisebread.com The 5 Best Apps for Busy Working Parents http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-apps-for-busy-working-parents <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-5-best-apps-for-busy-working-parents" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/mother_baby_phone_43606458.jpg" alt="Mom using apps for busy working parents" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Working parents need to maximize their time in order to be most efficient. These apps will help working moms and dads better manage kids' routines, plan family outings, and manage family budgets effectively.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-fun-money-apps-for-kids?ref=seealso">10 Fun Money Apps for Kids</a></p> <h2>1. Happy Kids Timer</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/KidTimer_02.PNG" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Having a hard time keeping kids on schedule, especially in the mornings? <a href="http://www.kidssmartzone.com/">HappyKidsTimer</a> is an app your kids use to help them manage their daily morning routines, like making their beds, getting dressed, brushing their teeth, and so forth. The app features timers and fun incentives to help your kids get on their way.</p> <p>Available for Android and iOS.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-basic-manners-you-must-teach-your-kids?ref=seealso">10 Basic Manners You Must Teach Your Kids</a></p> <h2>2. KidsEatFree</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/KidsEatFree.PNG" width="340" height="605" alt="" /></p> <p>Busy parents often don't have time to cook &mdash; and dining out with the whole family gets expensive, fast. Restaurateurs have responded with a variety of kids eat free promotions. Too many, in fact, for busy parents to track. <a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/kids-eat-free-restaurant-finder/id933114765?mt=8">KidsEatFree</a> is the free app that helps you find free kids' meals nearby, keeping your family on time &mdash; and on budget.</p> <p>Available for iOS.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-frugal-and-delicious-meals-to-make-with-your-kids?ref=seealso">10 Frugal and Delicious Meals to Make With Your Kids</a></p> <h2>3. Mint.com</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/Mint_AppStore.jpeg" width="341" height="605" alt="" /></p> <p>Speaking of budgets, busy parents need to manage their family's money while they are managing the kiddoes. <a href="https://www.mint.com/">Mint.com</a> remains the gold standard free app for tracking all your spending, paying bills, setting and tracking budgets, and monitoring overall net worth.</p> <p>Available for Android and iOS.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-5-apps-can-fix-your-finances?ref=seealso">These 5 Apps Can Fix Your Finances</a></p> <h2>4. VarageSale</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/VarageSale_01.PNG" width="340" height="605" alt="" /></p> <p>If you're keen on sticking to your budget, <a href="https://www.varagesale.com/">VarageSale</a> is great for connecting busy parents with others who want to buy or sell used family and children goods. You can make extra cash off your used stroller or crib &mdash; or you can pick up gently used ones for a great price. Look at all the cute outfits!</p> <p>Available for Android and iOS.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-sell-your-kids-stuff-at-a-consignment-sale?ref=seealso">How to Sell Your Kids' Stuff at a Consignment Sale</a></p> <h2>5. Trekaroo</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/Trekaroo.PNG" width="340" height="605" alt="" /></p> <p>Finally, even the busiest, most goal-directed families need some downtime. <a href="http://www.trekaroo.com/">Trekaroo</a> helps hardworking parents plan and budget family outings &mdash; everything from faraway vacations to local day trips. The app finds kid-friendly activities when and where you need them. Even better, each destination includes reviews from other busy parents who've already been, so you can get the inside scoop way before you get there.</p> <p>Available for Android and iOS.</p> <p><em>What are your go-to apps for managing life with kids?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/janet-alvarez">Janet Alvarez</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-apps-for-busy-working-parents">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-apps-that-make-budgeting-fun-no-really">7 Apps That Make Budgeting Fun — No Really!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-your-smartphone-saves-you-money">8 Ways Your Smartphone Saves You Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-apple-watch-apps-thatll-save-you-money">8 Apple Watch Apps That&#039;ll Save You Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-gluttony-is-keeping-you-poor">6 Ways Gluttony Is Keeping You Poor</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-5-apps-will-help-you-finally-organize-your-money">These 5 Apps Will Help You Finally Organize Your Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Technology apps budgeting managing money money management parenting phone phone apps productivity saving money smartphone Tue, 09 Aug 2016 11:00:11 +0000 Janet Alvarez 1768674 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Put Your Spouse on a Budget Without Ruining Your Marriage http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-put-your-spouse-on-a-budget-without-ruining-your-marriage <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-put-your-spouse-on-a-budget-without-ruining-your-marriage" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/husband_wife_high_five_91622835.jpg" alt="Woman putting her spouse on a budget without ruining marriage" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The quickest way to sour a marriage is to nag your spouse about money and try to control every cent they spend. However, keeping mum about your finances can lead you and your spouse into a lot of debt or overall poor finances. Here are ways to get your spouse on a budget, without ruining your marriage.</p> <h2>Counseling Is Okay!</h2> <p>Many couples make the mistake in thinking that marriage counseling is only for marriages that are in trouble. However, counseling can be a helpful tool even when your marriage is healthy. Having a mediator help you navigate financial woes can even be desirable, so that both you and your spouse feel like they are heard.</p> <p>To seek out counseling for your finances within marriage, you can talk with a financial adviser that has your best interest in mind, a marriage and family therapist, a pastor, or even an older couple who you consider wise and financially stable. It might seem embarrassing to reach out for help, but it could be the wisest step to keeping your marriage and finances strong.</p> <h2>Set Up Budget Dates</h2> <p>Just as you would set up regular date nights, set up monthly budget dates. Treat your spouse to their favorite coffee drink and discuss the numbers for the month, as well as goals for the next month.</p> <p>Budget dates should not be a time where you point the finger. It should be a time for mutual discussion and growth. Depending on which financial area your spouse is in charge of, ask for their feedback. For example, if your spouse does the grocery shopping, did they feel like they had enough money that month or was it too tight? If your spouse is requesting more money for the grocery budget, you can decide together what to cut to accommodate.</p> <p>Sometimes it is a good idea to invite your children to these meetings, especially if they are older than 10. Kids need to see the &quot;why&quot; behind the reasons they can't go to camp all summer long or get everything they want. Also, allowing your kids see and experience how you budget successfully only sets them up for budgeting success later on.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-i-learned-about-money-after-getting-married?ref=seealso">8 Things I Learned About Money After Getting Married</a></p> <h2>Find What Inspires Them</h2> <p>Sometimes it can be hard to scrimp and sacrifice just for the sake of saving money. We all need a purpose to have the motivation to work at something. Whether it's for the dream vacation or just finally being able to live debt-free, find the goals that both of you want to achieve and set the budget that will make it happen. Show that if you both tighten up your spending and stay the course, the reward will be waiting at the finish line.</p> <h2>Keep Things Fun</h2> <p>Find ways to lighten things up and make staying on budget fun, so it doesn't get tedious or simply boring. You don't have to wait until you've saved enough for the dream vacation to enjoy a reward for your hard work. Add milestones along the way that allow the two of you to celebrate. Turn it into a game to see who can find the best deals or other challenges that keep both of you interested. Don't forget about creative ways to make extra money, too. Perhaps you two can do something together that will earn extra cash.</p> <h2>Practical Tips to Get Your Spouse on a Budget</h2> <p>So far, the marriage budgeting tips have been about the mentality behind savings. Once you get your spouse on board with your budget, then use these practical tips to stay successful.</p> <ul> <li>Budget for you and your spouse to have &quot;mad money&quot; each month. This can be $25 or $500, depending on your budget. However, this money can be spent however your spouse wants. This allows both of you to spend on yourselves without guilt.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Use an easy-to-use budgeting app that connects to your accounts and syncs with each of your phones. Encourage your spouse to look at it and track spending daily.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Have savings taken out automatically. If you wait until the end of the month to put money into savings, you might find you end up short each month. Make savings a priority or take advantage of debit cards that round up purchases and deposit the extra into your savings account.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Stop using credit cards if they are too hard to control. Taking them away for a few months can help you get back on track.</li> </ul> <h2>Separate Accounts</h2> <p>Separate accounts can be useful for managing expenses and ensuring there's no opportunity to overdraw for a budget. If you split the financial responsibilities of a household, it makes sense to manage your own accounts for your assigned budgets. Just make sure there's accountability and transparency.</p> <p>Marriage is hard, and budgeting is just as difficult. Put them both together, and you could have a recipe for disaster. It's important to be open and honest so that you don't end up in a financial disaster.</p> <p><em>How do you and your spouse stay on a budget?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-eneriz">Ashley Eneriz</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-put-your-spouse-on-a-budget-without-ruining-your-marriage">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-moves-to-make-the-moment-you-decide-to-get-married">5 Money Moves to Make the Moment You Decide to Get Married</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-i-learned-about-money-after-getting-married">8 Things I Learned About Money After Getting Married</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-regular-budget-meetings-might-save-your-marriage">6 Ways Regular Budget Meetings Might Save Your Marriage</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-navigate-3-common-money-arguments-with-your-significant-other">How to Navigate 3 Common Money Arguments With Your Significant Other</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-support-your-broke-parents">How to Support Your Broke Parents</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Budgeting Family agreements bank accounts compromise counseling marriage paying bills relationships spending spouse teamwork Tue, 09 Aug 2016 09:00:09 +0000 Ashley Eneriz 1767118 at http://www.wisebread.com These 15 Road Trip Snacks Make It All About the Journey http://www.wisebread.com/these-15-road-trip-snacks-make-it-all-about-the-journey <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/these-15-road-trip-snacks-make-it-all-about-the-journey" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_90996541_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="delicious road trip snacks" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>As children of the '60s, my husband and I spent a lot of time in hot station wagons on car trips. Stopping for gas meant gas only, not junk food, and a trip to the bathroom. Eating out was rarely an option. Instead, we were fed car snacks, and occasionally had a picnic lunch. To this day, on even short trips, my husband and I pack food for the road.</p> <p>My mother elevated road trip food to an art form, using a special picnic basket, and whipping up special foods we didn't usually just have around the house. My dad would find nice spots to stop and picnic so the trip was broken up into pleasant outings.</p> <p>You'll want to pack small ice chests with blue ice blocks to store water, other beverages, any perishable snacks, and wet washcloths, packed in a sandwich bag (nice for cooling off or a good wiping down). Stay away from greasy or oily foods, which are not only messy, but may upset stomachs. Also, avoid foods and drinks that stain if spilled.</p> <p>Here are 15 delicious, frugal road trip snacks to keep you going.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-travel-hacks-for-an-affordable-summer-road-trip?ref=seealso">7 Travel Hacks for an Affordable Summer Road Trip</a></p> <h2>1. Homemade Trail Mix</h2> <p>Sure, you can buy it all pre-mixed, but why not make it yourself and save some money? &quot;Classic&quot; trail mix usually contains cashews, peanuts, almonds, raisins, and M&amp;M's. Before buying all of those ingredients, though, check your pantry for dried fruit, other nuts, and cereal. You might as well use those up. If nuts or cereal are a little stale, just toast in a low oven (200&ordm;F) for about 10 minutes to crisp them up. Nice additions are craisins, coconut pieces, crackers, and pretzels.</p> <h2>2. Energy Bars</h2> <p>These <a href="https://www.hawaiianelectric.com/recipes/find-a-recipe/energy-bars">energy bars</a>, which are extremely popular in Hawaii, travel well and aren't messy like traditional crumbly granola bars. Store the bars individually in waxed paper; twist the ends to seal.</p> <h2>3. Fruit</h2> <p>Select fruit that travels well. This rules out peaches, nectarines, and bananas. Stick to apples, grapes, clementines, oranges, and other nonstaining, non-smelly, and non-sticky fruits.</p> <h2>4. Veggies</h2> <p>You'll feel pretty virtuous if you snack on veggies while you cruise the highway. Good travelers are: baby carrots, snap peas, celery sticks, and even radishes. Wash and pack into small plastic bags; store in the ice chest to keep them more refreshing and crispy.</p> <h2>5. Nuts</h2> <p>Nuts are a great snack for road trips, but you'll pay more if you buy them in individual packages or cans. Make your own <a href="http://markbittman.com/roasted-nuts-so-easy-so-good/">roasted, salted nuts</a> and pack into small snack-sized bags. I like the addition of curry powder, or cumin and red pepper flakes.</p> <h2>6. Snack Mix</h2> <p>My mother cranked this classic <a href="http://allrecipes.com/recipe/87605/original-chex-party-mix/">snack mix</a> out at regular intervals (in the oven, though, not the microwave). I still love it. Try substituting goldfish crackers for the bagel chips, and toss in some oregano. Great stuff.</p> <h2>7. Cheese</h2> <p>Was string cheese developed for road trips? It's such a perfect car snack. Keep it frugal by buying the large bags, not the individual sticks.</p> <h2>8. Soup</h2> <p>Mom filled a large thermos with soup when we were heading someplace chilly. I recommend pulling the car over for a soup break, lest you burn yourself or make a mess. Some of my mom's tried-and-true were <a href="http://allrecipes.com/recipe/13041/my-best-clam-chowder/">clam chowder</a>, <a href="http://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/old-fashioned-turkey-noodle-soup">turkey noodle</a>, and <a href="http://www.bettycrocker.com/recipes/split-pea-soup/6fe46425-366d-4c2f-b68c-1dc824391f60">split pea</a>. She'd bring along breadsticks, too, to round things out.</p> <h2>9. Sandwiches</h2> <p>I don't like sandwiches on road trips, normally, because they tend to get mushy and I have a phobia about that. There is one exception, though: peanut butter sandwiches. Don't be feeding kids egg salad or tuna unless you want to ride the vomit comet.</p> <h2>10. Animal Crackers</h2> <p>I love these, in their colorful, tiny circus-print boxes. They still entertain me, and they are cholesterol-free.</p> <h2>11. Jerky</h2> <p>Pack beef, turkey, or even fish jerky for a non-messy, high-protein treat.</p> <h2>12. Muffins</h2> <p>Either made sweet or savory, muffins are portable and low on the &quot;messiness&quot; scale. These <a href="http://allrecipes.com/recipe/222601/zucchini-chocolate-chip-muffins/">zucchini-chocolate chip</a> muffins will be a hit.</p> <h2>13. Popcorn</h2> <p>Popcorn has one disadvantage: You'll need to vacuum after the trip. However, it's crunchy and delicious. Try gussying it up with this <a href="http://www.rachaelray.com/recipes/black-pepper-and-parm-cheesy-popcorn">black pepper and parm recipe</a>.</p> <h2>14. &quot;Fried&quot; Chicken</h2> <p>Because it's <a href="http://www.bettycrocker.com/recipes/oven-fried-chicken-tenders/46a69e4d-4c31-485b-9d43-67d40b353f2e">oven-baked</a>, it meets my road trip non-greasy criteria. Bake the night before and chill.</p> <h2>15. Pinwheels</h2> <p>These <a href="http://www.julieseatsandtreats.com/tortilla-pinwheels/">tortilla pinwheels</a> pass the road test because they are a perfect bite size. They're also non-messy and non-greasy.</p> <p><em>What else makes for a great road trip snack? Share with us!</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this post? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fthese-15-road-trip-snacks-make-it-all-about-the-journey&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FThese%2015%20Road%20Trip%20Snacks%20Make%20It%20All%20About%20the%20Journey.jpg&amp;description=These%2015%20Road%20Trip%20Snacks%20Make%20It%20All%20About%20the%20Journey" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/These%2015%20Road%20Trip%20Snacks%20Make%20It%20All%20About%20the%20Journey.jpg" width="250" height="374" alt="" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/marla-walters">Marla Walters</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-15-road-trip-snacks-make-it-all-about-the-journey">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-little-known-ways-to-save-at-disneyland">15 Little Known Ways to Save at Disneyland</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-save-an-extra-109486-a-year">How to Save an Extra $1,094.86 a Year</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-useful-items-hotels-usually-provide-for-free">14 Useful Items Hotels Usually Provide for Free</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-budget-friendly-beach-destinations">6 Budget-Friendly Beach Destinations</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-worlds-most-affordable-michelin-starred-restaurants">The World&#039;s Most Affordable Michelin-Starred Restaurants</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Food and Drink Travel road trip road trip snacks saving money snacks travel hacks Fri, 05 Aug 2016 10:30:07 +0000 Marla Walters 1766247 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Shop With Purpose — And Save More Money http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-shop-with-purpose-and-save-more-money <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-shop-with-purpose-and-save-more-money" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_71503559_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="be a mindful shopper and save money" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>In a 2014 study published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology, researchers from the University of Michigan discovered that <a href="https://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/handle/2027.42/100258/1208_Rick_Jan14.pdf">retail therapy actually works</a>! They found that shopping motivated by a desire to repair mood can be an effective way to temporarily minimize sadness and restore a sense of control.</p> <p>Please note that the results of this study are not a free pass to go hit the mall and throw cash around in your favorite store. For comparison, there's another thing that has been proven by science to temporarily restore a sense of control and minimize sadness: cocaine.</p> <p>Shoppers can safely regulate stress via consumer spending, provided they ditch their mindless spending for more intentional buying habits. And everything's better when done with intention &mdash; even shopping. So here are some questions I ask myself before I load up the shopping cart.</p> <h2>How Long Does the High Last?</h2> <p>Last night my husband asked me, &quot;Are you going to wear those shoes to bed?&quot;</p> <p>This was a serious question. Whenever I buy something new, I revert back to my eighth-grade self. I listen to new records on repeat until the neighbors complain. I will try 97 new recipes just so I have an excuse to play with my new digital kitchen thermometer, even though that thermometer is telling me that my house is currently 97&ordm; F before I preheat the oven for baking. I have worn my new sandals for seven days straight, going so far as to slip them on in the middle of the night, instead of my house slippers, on my way to feed the cat.</p> <p>I foster this juvenile behavior because I want to maximize the pleasure of acquisition. I know from years of trial and error, that the euphoria I get from shopping retail lasts only 10 days. I get the same high regardless of whether I buy one pair of shoes or an entire spring wardrobe. So, instead of going on a shopping bender, I purposely try to spread out my purchases. My expanded shopping schedule also gives me the pleasure of anticipation. I always have something to look for.</p> <h2>Will This Purchase Give Me Continual Happiness?</h2> <p>After my childhood dog, my second favorite gift ever was knitting lessons from my grandmother. I am a process knitter. This means I could really care less if I actually finish a project. And 99% of the pleasure that I get from knitting comes from the activity itself. It's meditative. It's cheaper than therapy. I don't feel like I'm wasting my life watching bad television if I am also knitting. I belong to a knitting group that is an important part of my social circle. Most importantly, knitting gives me a way to have a daily connection with my grandmother, who passed away 26 years ago.</p> <p>Buying yarn is a tactile, fun experience. But the process of knitting a sweater extends my 10-day new purchase high over weeks. Wearing or gifting the finished sweater can add months or years to my happiness schedule.</p> <h2>Will This Purchase Allow Me to Achieve a Life Goal?</h2> <p>This year I have challenged myself to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-why-i-need-to-find-31k-this-year">find an additional $31,000</a>. I need this money, in part, to purchase new camera equipment that will allow me to switch careers and work professionally as an architectural photographer. Taking pictures of buildings already makes me ridiculously happy, so the fact that I can get paid for doing what I enjoy is icing on the cake.</p> <h2>Will I Be Grateful for This Purchase Every Day?</h2> <p>I am grateful for small things. Like the pair of shorts I wore for 200 days straight last year because my house lacks air conditioning and it's apocalyptically hot in Los Angeles. I don't love these shorts. In fact, I am sick of wearing them. But this doesn't negate the fact I am grateful that they have kept me cool and held up to near constant wear for three years.</p> <h2>Will This Purchase Give Me a Memorable Experience I Couldn't Get Otherwise?</h2> <p>My husband loves camping. After testing a variety of gear from REI's rental department, my husband decided to buy his own camping equipment. His high-tech tent, backpack, and sleeping quilt cost over $1,000! While these purchases will make financial sense in the long run versus continuing to rent gear, their true value is experiential. His camping kit is so lightweight that he can hike further and longer than he ever could with the heavier rented supplies. He is thrilled that he can now reach campsites that were previously beyond possibility for him.</p> <h2>Will I Have to Use Credit to Make This Purchase?</h2> <p>My great-grandfather had a good rule about money: If you can't pay cash, you can't afford it.</p> <p>I'm feeling a lot of pressure to buy the $4,000, state-of-the-art camera body I need for my photography work with credit. The argument for buying it now is that, the sooner I have the camera, the sooner I can get cracking on professional gigs. However, I am resisting the temptation to buy the camera now, because buying with a credit card really means I'm just <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-most-valuable-thing-debt-takes-from-you-isnt-money-its-this">borrowing time from myself</a> in the future. I will have to work that much longer to pay off the additional interest.</p> <h2>Will This Purchase Continue to Cost Me Money?</h2> <p>I go out of my way to buy clothes that can be washed anywhere, with little fuss. I might love a dress at the store, but it's not coming home with me if it's &quot;Dry Clean Only.&quot; With so many hand-washable garments available for every occasion, the maintenance cost of dry cleaning just isn't worth it. Most shoppers don't realize that the greatest financial expense and worst environmental cost of their clothes comes not from production, but from cleaning.</p> <h2>Will This Purchase Add to My To-Do List?</h2> <p>Like many handy people, I have a house full of unfinished projects. While I'm proud of my collection of mid-century furniture that I trash-picked, and the designer clothes that I bought at a 90% discount because they needed a minor repair, I have a moratorium on bringing anything into my house that isn't in perfect condition. After all, if I really needed any of these items, I would have fixed them already.</p> <h2>How Will I Dispose of This Purchase?</h2> <p>Most consumers don't consider the full lifecycle of their purchases, which is why our landfills are packed with perfectly usable, recyclable, and occasionally valuable items. Because it's important to me to leave this planet in a better state than when I found it, I make sure that I have an &quot;end of life&quot; plan for each purchase. Do I have a responsible method of disposal for this thing that I want? Can I buy this tool without the additional packaging? Can I check out this book from the library instead buying it? Can this product be recycled or upcycled?</p> <p>According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the average American <a href="http://www.wisegeek.org/how-much-garbage-does-a-person-create-in-one-year.htm">produces 1,600 lbs of trash</a> each year. We can do better. Buying with intention is something everyone can do to improve the planet!</p> <p><em>Do you practice intentional living, but also love to shop? How do your balance your consumer habits with your value system? Share with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/max-wong">Max Wong</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-shop-with-purpose-and-save-more-money">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-use-google-alerts-to-save-money">6 Ways to Use Google Alerts to Save Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-49-smartest-amazon-hacks-that-will-save-you-big">Flashback Friday: 49 Smartest Amazon Hacks That Will Save You Big</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-8-everyday-buys-will-be-cheaper-this-summer">These 8 Everyday Buys Will Be Cheaper This Summer</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-money-lessons-to-take-from-the-great-depression">9 Money Lessons to Take From the Great Depression</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-budget-friendly-beach-destinations">6 Budget-Friendly Beach Destinations</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Shopping frugal living mindless shopping saving money shopping habits shopping with intention Wed, 03 Aug 2016 09:00:13 +0000 Max Wong 1764816 at http://www.wisebread.com 11 Budgeting Skills Everyone Should Master http://www.wisebread.com/11-budgeting-skills-everyone-should-master <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/11-budgeting-skills-everyone-should-master" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/97559139.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Budgeting. In some of our lives, it's known as &quot;the b-word.&quot;</p> <p>If you've never budgeted before, it can seem like a gargantuan task that only produces something that will make you miserable. And if you consider yourself bad with money or find that you have a difficult time living within your means, budgeting can feel like one more way to fail financially.</p> <p>But budgeting doesn't have to be any of these things. It doesn't have to take a lot of time and energy, and it can free you so that you can save for the things that you really want. It can also help you understand why you spend the way you do, and help you get a handle on it.</p> <p>The key to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/max-wongs-budget-0" target="_blank">making your budget</a> into a friend and not a foe is having the right set of skills to make it happen. Here are a few of those.</p> <h2>1. See Money as a Tool</h2> <p>We tend to think of money in a lot of different ways. Money can be freedom, it can be despair, it can mean power or significance, or any one of a number of things. The point is, to be good at budgeting, develop the mindset that money is a tool. It helps you do the things that you want and need to do. No matter how much or how little you have, your money can help you achieve your goals.</p> <h2>2. Record Your Transactions</h2> <p>On a practical level, you will need a record of your transactions to start a budget, and you will need to keep recording them to continue budgeting. You can do this by hand, via an app, or once a week on a spreadsheet. Do it however works for you, but learn to record your transactions and you will be well on your way to budgeting.</p> <h2>3. Assess Your Spending</h2> <p>Recording your transactions won't help if you never think about them. Learn to categorize your transactions in whatever way is meaningful for you, so you can see how much you're spending in different areas. This can help you decide where to spend more, where to spend less, and what cutting back might look like in your everyday life.</p> <h2>4. Make a Budget</h2> <p>This might be the most obvious skill in this list, but it's also one of the most important. There are spreadsheets you can download, programs like <a href="http://www.youneedabudget.com">YNAB</a> and <a href="http://www.mint.com">Mint</a> that help you see your spending in different ways, and more. Some things to think about before you choose a method involve deciding whether you want to go old school or online, and whether you want to store it on your personal computer or in the cloud.</p> <h2>5. Write It Out</h2> <p>Throughout the budgeting and recording process, it will help if you actually write things out. This can be on a computer, though there is something about the act of writing something and then seeing it there in your own handwriting that helps you remember. Whatever you do, don't keep your budget in your head. It's easy for numbers to become fuzzy and for you to forget about your budget entirely. Instead, put your budget where you can see it often, so that it feels real and you remember your goals.</p> <h2>6. Plan Ahead</h2> <p>When you make your budget, don't just think about what you need right now, or even your monthly expenses. Think, too, about expenses that only come around every so often. Car insurance, life insurance, and property taxes are a few line items that can fall into these categories. Then, save a little bit of money every month toward these items, so you can pay them without worry when that bill shows up.</p> <h2>7. Include Spending Money</h2> <p>If you don't have spending money, you will feel like your budget is a cage you need to break out of, rather than a structure supporting you and your goals. Even if all you can afford is $5, give yourself something. This can go against the grain, especially if you have a lot of debt or very little income. However, you are important. And you will be happier keeping your budget if you know you have a little money you can spend however you want.</p> <h2>8. Make a System That Works for You</h2> <p>It's easy to get sucked into a system that doesn't work for you. For instance, you may not be able to track your spending every day. If that's you, then don't buy into a budgeting system that requires this. There are plenty of systems where you can record once a week, or so. If the system doesn't work for you, you won't do it, and there won't be any value to budgeting. Keep trying things until you find something you like.</p> <h2>9. Live With Discipline</h2> <p>This is a huge skill and one that won't happen overnight. Living a disciplined life, though, will go far toward helping you make and keep your budget. Pay attention to your budget. Update it. And when you don't have any money left for something, stop spending! It can help to breathe through your desires, to remind yourself of your bigger goals, and to give yourself a waiting period before you buy things.</p> <h2>10. Know When to Splurge</h2> <p>This is a tricky skill, especially in light of the one above. However, there are times in every life when it's right to splurge. This doesn't have to be a huge spending binge &mdash; it can be something as small as a coffee with a friend. A lot of times, this comes into play when you choose to buy something of a higher quality even though it costs more. It's up to you to decide when to splurge, but make sure there's some room for it in your financial life.</p> <h2>11. Ask Yourself Hard Questions</h2> <p>When you're budgeting alone or you are the one in charge of the budget, it can be easy to let things slide. Get into the habit of asking yourself hard questions, like, &quot;Why do I always spend too much on entertainment?&quot; and &quot;Am I realistically able to take that vacation this year?&quot; You may not like the answers you find, but being honest with yourself will ultimately help you become more aware of who you are and how things work inside of you &mdash; which will help you meet your goals, financial and otherwise.</p> <p><em>Are there any other budgeting skills that are important to you? Which ones are they?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-budgeting-skills-everyone-should-master">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-day-debt-reduction-plan-pay-it-off">5-Day Debt Reduction Plan: Pay It Off</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-sites-and-apps-to-help-you-track-your-spending-and-stick-to-your-budget">10 Sites and Apps to Help You Track Your Spending and Stick to Your Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-day-debt-reduction-plan-dont-ever-stop">5-Day Debt Reduction Plan: Don&#039;t Ever Stop</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-big-expenses-you-can-easily-get-rid-of">10 Big Expenses You Can Easily Get Rid Of</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-easy-ways-to-budget-for-summer-vacation">7 Easy Ways to Budget for Summer Vacation</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting expenses organization planning record keeping saving money skills spending Splurging Wed, 27 Jul 2016 09:00:10 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1759923 at http://www.wisebread.com Flashback Friday: 72 Brilliant Ways to Stretch $20 http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-72-brilliant-ways-to-stretch-20 <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/flashback-friday-72-brilliant-ways-to-stretch-20" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/hand_cash_20_39629376.jpg" alt="Finding brilliant ways to stretch $20" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Few great things in this life are free. Even the most frugal folks have trouble staying under $20 doing any particular activity. The world is quite the pricey place now. But if $20 is all you have left to spend on weekend fun, here are 72 ways to drop that Harriet Tubman.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/woman_diy_painting_000017057578.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-cool-diy-home-improvements-for-20-or-less?ref=fbf">10 Cool DIY Home Improvements for $20 or Less</a> &mdash; Is that $20 burning a hole in your pocket? Put it to good use with some simple and frugal home improvement projects. Because you really don't need to throw away big bucks on every repair or piece of decor.&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-in-baltimore-the-20-best-ways-to-spend-it?ref=fbf">$20 in Baltimore: The 20 Best Ways to Spend It</a> &mdash; If you find yourself in Baltimore, check out one of the last remaining drive-in theaters, visit the grave of John Wilkes Booth, or take in the city from the water in the Baltimore water taxi.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/woman_applying_makeup_000060162238.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-great-brand-name-beauty-buys-under-20?ref=fbf">10 Great Brand Name Beauty Buys Under $20</a> &mdash; You don't need to settle for store brand beauty products to score good deals. These brand name beauty products are top notch, and will fit right into your limited budget.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-in-new-york-city-the-15-best-ways-to-spend-it?ref=fbf">$20 in New York City: The 15 Best Ways to Spend It</a> &mdash; Strolling around the Big Apple wondering if a gourmet coffee and a slice will deplete your funds? Never fear! You can check out the Brooklyn Bridge, see an off-Broadway play, or grab a bite from a food truck. The options are endless in this beautiful city.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/los-angeles-5224486542_688f23ce34_z.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-in-los-angeles-the-16-best-ways-to-spend-it?ref=fbf">$20 in Los Angeles: The 16 Best Ways to Spend It</a> &mdash; And on the other coast is sunny LA, where the people are gorgeous and the pressed juice is in abundance. But don't waste your $20 on just one pricey juice, when you can be an audience member at a live show and still eat all the tacos.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-dinner-party-for-6-feed-em-for-under-20?ref=fbf">A Dinner Party for 6: Feed 'Em for Under $20</a> &mdash; Hosting a dinner party is stressful, especially if you only have $20 to feed everyone! But here are some brilliant tricks to fill the bellies of your guests without going over your $20 limit.</p> <p><em>What other brilliant ways can you stretch $20? Share with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chrissa-hardy">Chrissa Hardy</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-72-brilliant-ways-to-stretch-20">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-50-money-moves-you-need-to-make-when-big-changes-happen">Flashback Friday: 50 Money Moves You Need to Make When Big Changes Happen</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-45-life-lessons-youd-give-to-your-younger-self">Flashback Friday: 45 Life Lessons You&#039;d Give to Your Younger Self</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-49-smartest-amazon-hacks-that-will-save-you-big">Flashback Friday: 49 Smartest Amazon Hacks That Will Save You Big</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-84-reasons-to-be-done-with-summer-and-get-excited-for-fall">Flashback Friday: 84 Reasons to Be Done With Summer and Get Excited for Fall</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-47-best-back-to-school-shopping-hacks-ever">Flashback Friday: 47 Best Back-to-School Shopping Hacks Ever</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Budgeting $20 beauty entertainment fbf flashback friday frugal living money management Spending Money weekend activities Fri, 22 Jul 2016 10:00:13 +0000 Chrissa Hardy 1757097 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Best Cities for Going Car-Free http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-cities-for-going-car-free <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-best-cities-for-going-car-free" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_72593117_LARGE.jpg" alt="going car free is easy in these cities" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There's ample evidence that walkable neighborhoods breed <a href="http://www.citylab.com/design/2014/12/growing-evidence-shows-walkability-is-good-for-you-and-for-cities/383612/">safer, healthier, and more democratic constituencies</a>. And even in cities with high levels of smog &mdash; here's looking at you, Los Angeles &mdash; studies show that the <a href="http://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/walking-and-cycling-good-for-health-even-in-cities-with-higher-levels-of-air-pollution">health benefits of walking</a> or cycling or recreation or as a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-make-the-most-of-your-morning-commute">means of commuting</a> far outweigh the negative health risks associated with breathing in air pollution. What's more, when city dwellers opt to walk or cycle instead of relying on gas guzzlers, overall air pollution levels can be reduced. It's a win-win-win. You don't need a car to get around these U.S. cities.</p> <h2>1. Boston</h2> <p>Nicknamed America's Walking City, Boston's relatively small footprint is dense with small neighborhoods, each with a unique character and a smattering of restaurants, shops, and convenience stores. That is to say that most Bostonians can complete their daily errands without ever putting the key in the ignition. Boston is also a city where owning a car, in many cases, costs more than it's worth. Take, for example, these<a href="https://www.bostonglobe.com/business/2016/06/30/got-these-back-bay-parking-spots-could-yours/BOvFjiiID0xWUJtQZxjdNM/story.html"> tandem, uncovered parking spaces</a> in the high-end Beacon Hill neighborhood. For about a half million dollars, they can be yours. No, this isn't a one-time fluke in pricing. That's actually the going rate. A pair of parking spots on the same street <a href="https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2015/11/03/look-back-some-priciest-parking-spots-boston/tIPhO225Vv5Mrdxy8aVYjJ/story.html?p1=Article_Related_Box_Article">sold for $560,000</a> at an auction in 2013.</p> <h2>2. New York</h2> <p>The city that never sleeps &mdash; Manhattan, in particular &mdash; is as pedestrian-friendly as they come. With sidewalks, bike lanes, buses, and subway routes galore, New York brings amenities such as markets, shops, workplaces, medical centers, and gyms in close proximity to the apartments and condos where people live. The city also has easy street crossings and long block lengths, making for more pleasurable pedestrian routes. There is, however, <a href="http://www1.nyc.gov/assets/planning/download/pdf/plans-studies/sustainable-communities/bmn/bronx_metro_report/walkability.pdf">room for improvement</a>. Manhattan is by far the most walkable of New York's boroughs, but it accounts for just 8% of the city's population. Other boroughs aren't actually all that walkable. In the Bronx, neighborhood decline and disinvestment in public transit has made walking around some neighborhoods difficult and less enticing. In truth, the real walkability winner here is Manhattan, and not all of New York City.</p> <h2>3. Washington, D.C.</h2> <p>Much of the nation's capital has walkable zones where residential and retail spaces are in close proximity. And, unlike New York, these zones are evenly distributed between downtown areas and the suburbs. That means it's not just the <a href="http://www.archdaily.com/521438/washington-d-c-the-most-walkable-city-in-the-us">heart of the city that's walkable</a>, but the outskirts, as well.</p> <h2>4. San Francisco</h2> <p>The Golden Gate City was built on 42 hills &mdash; terrain that can make for treacherous gear shifting. And while all those hills will do a number on your calf muscles, there's truly no better way to get around San Francisco's densely populated districts. That's because a quarter of the 49 square-mile city's office, retail, and multi-family rental space is located within the bounds of <a href="http://www.smartgrowthamerica.org/foot-traffic-ahead-2016/">walkable neighborhoods</a>. And while it's possible to break out of these neighborhood walkability zones and <a href="http://www.sfwalkingman.com/">trek the entire city by foot</a>, it's not exactly the fastest or most practical method of getting around. Alas, every city has its walkability limits.</p> <h2>5. Detroit</h2> <p>Oddly enough, you can get around Motor City just fine by foot &mdash; no motor required. In fact, these days <a href="http://wdet.org/posts/2016/06/20/83328-going-motorless-in-the-motor-city/">pedestrian-friendly projects</a> are sprouting up all over Detroit. And it's not just for the sake of recreation. About a quarter of all households citywide lack access to a motor vehicle. New walking path projects can help many in this demographic commute to and from the places they need to go, such as work, the grocery store, and school. And since you can't walk everywhere, new bike paths are surfacing, as well. Whereas Detroit had no bike lanes a decade ago, there are now nearly 200 of them.</p> <p><em>What other cities are good for going car-free? Share with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/brittany-lyte">Brittany Lyte</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-cities-for-going-car-free">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-life-is-wonderful-when-you-swap-your-car-for-a-bike">9 Ways Life Is Wonderful When You Swap Your Car for a Bike</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/did-your-car-break-down-check-for-recalled-parts-and-fix-it-for-free">Did your car break down? Check for recalled parts and fix it for free!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-hidden-advantages-to-getting-rid-of-your-car">7 Hidden Advantages to Getting Rid of Your Car</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/it-bear-repeating-driving-slower-saves-you-money">It Bears Repeating - Driving Slower Saves Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-good-life-on-less-energy-even-in-the-us">The good life on less energy--even in the US</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Cars and Transportation bike car car-free city environmentally friendly public transportation transportation u.s. cities walking Wed, 20 Jul 2016 09:30:37 +0000 Brittany Lyte 1755541 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Money Moves to Make as Soon as You Conquer Debt http://www.wisebread.com/7-money-moves-to-make-as-soon-as-you-conquer-debt <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-money-moves-to-make-as-soon-as-you-conquer-debt" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_happy_sunset_79384959.jpg" alt="Woman making moves after conquering debt" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Congratulations &mdash; you're debt free! Now what?</p> <p>The road to debt elimination was long and treacherous, but just because the black cloud of lingering bills is no longer hanging over your head, that doesn't mean your financial house is in order. It's in better shape, sure, but you've still got a ways to go. To continue working toward that goal, here are a few smart moves you should make as soon as you get out of the red:</p> <h2>1. Rearrange and Trim Your Budget</h2> <p>Your top priority when getting out of debt is to not get back into debt. To accomplish that, you'll need to make changes to your spending and savings habits. You'll also need to revisit your budget and rearrange your priorities. Now that you don't have credit card or loan payments bleeding you dry every month, you'll have more disposable income &mdash; and you need to decide what you'll do with it to improve your quality of life and set yourself up for the future. Cut out anything that's unnecessary: Maybe it's the cable that you don't watch much of, the gym membership you don't use, or subscriptions to services you can live without. Whatever is it, cut the fat and don't look back.</p> <h2>2. Get Back to Building Your Emergency Fund</h2> <p>If you've been digging yourself out of a negative-money pit, chances are you don't have much of an emergency fund &mdash; and that needs to change ASAP. Building an emergency fund is the best way to avoid a potential debt scenario in the future. You'll be able to draw from that account to pay off life's little surprises in full, so you're not constantly treading water every time something unexpected happens.</p> <p>&quot;I recommend having an emergency fund saved up equal to six months' worth of expenses,&quot; says financial planner Russell Robertson of Alidade Wealth Partners in Atlanta, GA. &quot;This will give you time to get back on your feet if something unforeseen happens without completely disrupting everything in your life.&quot;</p> <h2>3. Check in on Your Credit Situation</h2> <p>Brace yourself. If you've been battling debt for an extended period of time &mdash; especially if you've only being sending in minimum payments &mdash; your credit situation is likely less than ideal. The good news, however, is that you're in the clear now (debt-wise, anyway), and this is the best time to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-does-your-credit-score-mean-good-bad-or-excellent?ref=internal">start rebuilding your credit</a>.</p> <p>Having a solid credit score puts you in a strong position when you need to finance a purchase, like a house or car, or apply for a new line of credit. It's always a good idea to know where you stand with credit and take steps to improve it.</p> <h2>4. Max Out Your Matching-Dollar Opportunities for Retirement</h2> <p>Like your emergency fund, contributions to your 401K and IRA were probably low (or perhaps even nonexistent) while you concentrated on paying down your debt. With more funds freed up now, it's important to start concentrating on your future &mdash; especially your retirement goals &mdash; and that includes maxing out dollar-matching opportunities to take full advantage of free money.</p> <p>&quot;401K plans in 2016 have a contribution limit of $18,000 a year, plus an extra $6,000 for people over 50, so with no debt to pay, you might have the opportunity to reach that limit now,&quot; says financial planner and investment adviser Jaycob Arbogast of Arbogast Advisers. &quot;Similarly, an IRA has a $5,500 limit for people under 50 and a $6,500 limit for people 50-plus, so maxing out those plans might be a good idea too. For example, with a 6% return, adding an extra $5,000 each year to your retirement savings from age 50 to 60 could add an additional $65,000 to your retirement savings. That's a great boost that someone in debt might not be able to maintain.&quot;</p> <h2>5. Start Investing With Long-Term Returns in Mind</h2> <p>Personally, I recommend investing in real estate, but what you invest in is up to you, so long as you're investing. Outside of your emergency fund, your money should never sit in a savings account earning fractions of pennies. Instead, you'll be better off putting that money in places that promise bigger returns over the long term, so you can meet your savings goals sooner and continue making more investments for (hopefully) a more prosperous life.</p> <p>Alternatively, Robertson recommends the stock market.</p> <p>&quot;If your budget still has room for more saving, put that money to work by investing in the markets,&quot; he advises. &quot;Exchange-traded funds (ETFs) are a great way to get diversified, low-cost exposure, and many online brokerages will offer commission-free ETF options as well.&quot;</p> <h2>6. Put Money Back Into the Investments You Already Have &mdash; Like Your Home</h2> <p>For many people, their homes are their biggest investments. To ensure that investment pays off the way you want and need it to, you have to maintain it. Thus, when you've paid off your debt, start thinking about home improvement projects that will increase value. Just be careful that you're not taking on projects that cost more than the house is worth. The last thing you need is to dump your savings into your home if the project doesn't enhance the house enough to make it worthwhile in the long run.</p> <h2>7. Open a Money Market Account for Higher Interest on Savings</h2> <p>If you have a substantial amount of savings in your emergency fund &mdash; and you should &mdash; that money shouldn't be in a traditional savings account. Contact your bank, or research others, to find savings accounts that offer the best interest rates, like money market accounts or high yield savings. Bottom line, there's absolutely no reason you shouldn't be getting the most bank for your buck, especially where savings are concerned.</p> <p>Robertson agrees, and in this particular case, rescinds his recommendation to invest in stocks.</p> <p>&quot;If there is something specific you are saving up for &mdash; a celebratory trip to Europe? A wedding? &mdash; within the next two to three years, I would recommend keeping that money out of the stock market,&quot; he says. &quot;Instead, consider a money market account or CD from an online bank. In many cases you can get close to 1% interest right now on cash that is still guaranteed up to FDIC limits (currently $250,000). In fact, this is a good idea for that emergency fund as well &mdash; something that earns interest and is separate from your everyday checking account.&quot;</p> <p><em>What else should the newly debt-free do with their money?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-money-moves-to-make-as-soon-as-you-conquer-debt">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-money-moves-to-make-before-you-start-investing">8 Money Moves to Make Before You Start Investing</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-biggest-myths-about-investing">The 10 Biggest Myths About Investing</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/should-you-pay-down-debt-first-or-invest">Should You Pay Down Debt First or Invest?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-reasons-why-a-roth-ira-may-be-better-than-your-401k">4 Reasons Why a Roth IRA May be Better Than Your 401(k)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-its-okay-to-delay-retirement-savings">5 Times It&#039;s Okay to Delay Retirement Savings</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Debt Management Investment 401k advice credit score emergency funds ETFs home improvements IRA money moves retirement stock market Fri, 15 Jul 2016 09:00:17 +0000 Mikey Rox 1752364 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Budget-Friendly Beach Destinations http://www.wisebread.com/6-budget-friendly-beach-destinations <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-budget-friendly-beach-destinations" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_beach_vacation_5993498.jpg" alt="Woman finding budget-friendly beach destinations" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Summer is all about the beach escape &mdash; a well-earned break from the toil of the daily routine in a place where the day is ruled by the rise and fall of the sun. But have you truly earned it? According to American Express, the average American vacation costs $1,145 per person, or $4,580 for a family of four. If that price tag looks steep, let's consider your options.</p> <p>Sure, you could forgo your annual vacation, but there's a price to pay for that, too. Studies show that vacationing can make you feel more restful and productive, improve your relationships, and boost your health. Neglecting to vacation, on the other hand &mdash; also known as being overworked &mdash; has been connected to depression, anxiety, insomnia, health problems, weight gain, and higher divorce rates. Perhaps your best bet is a trip to one of the nation's budget-friendly beaches. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-tourist-towns-that-are-actually-great-to-live-in?ref=seealso">6 &quot;Tourist Towns&quot; That Are Actually Great to Live In</a>)</p> <h2>1. Cayucos, California</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/beach_cliffs_859494.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>You won't find swanky tapas bars or hundred million dollar homes in <a href="http://www.visitcayucosca.com/cayucos-family-vacation/">this overlooked enclave</a> on the California coast. Yes, like many California beach destinations, Cayucos has gorgeous ocean views and surf spots galore. But unlike the rest, it's not over-the-top expensive. It's also not ultra-crowded with tourists. Fill your days with walks on the newly renovated historic pier, visits to the acclaimed skate park, kayak excursions down the coast, horseback riding adventures on the beach, or afternoon wine tasting. Laid-back and slow-moving with many dog and kid-friendly beaches, hotels, and restaurants &mdash; yes, you really can bring Sparky out to eat &mdash; Cayucos makes for a great, no-frills getaway for the entire family.</p> <h2>2. Gulfport, Mississippi</h2> <p>In Gulfport, where the <a href="http://www.census.gov/quickfacts/table/PST045215/00">median home value</a> is just $175,700, miles of sandy beaches are bordered by a boulevard populated by hotels and casinos. Though badly battered by Hurricane Katrina, this relatively undiscovered portion of the Gulf Coast has been rebuilding itself as a lively destination for beach-goers, fishermen, golfers, gamblers, and lovers of nightlife and live music. And, for now, that not-so-distant memory of Katrina's wrath keeps the prices here low. For $29, you can buy a roundtrip ferry ride to <a href="http://www.msshipisland.com/?q=about">Ship Island</a>, home of Mississippi's most scenic beaches. Located 11 miles south of Gulfport, this pristine barrier island is the ideal setting to soak up the sun, picnic, and unwind.</p> <h2>3. Pensacola, Florida</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/pensacola_florida_beach_66117559.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Florida is home to more coastline than any other continental state. And while many of the Sunshine State's beach destinations will empty your wallet, Pensacola was seemingly <a href="http://www.bestplaces.net/cost_of_living/city/florida/pensacola">made for the bargain-minded</a>. In addition to its affordability, this <a href="http://www.cityofpensacola.com/35/Visiting">westernmost city</a> in the Florida panhandle is known for its crystalline water and long stretch of powdery white sand beaches. A 20-minute drive from the city's downtown will get you there, though there is a public beach accessible from downtown, as well.</p> <p>In addition to beaches, Pensacola boasts a collection of pre-Civil War brick fortresses. The Gulf Breeze Zoo is home to 900 animals, while the National Naval Aviation Museum features a collection of more than 150 warbirds. Budget motels and inexpensive condominium vacation rentals are plentiful both in the Pensacola beach area and downtown &mdash; and so are budget-friendly dining options.</p> <h2>4. Matagorda, Texas</h2> <p>Matagorda is home of miles upon miles of untouched beaches. It's almost as if no one knows they're here. For the budget traveler, that's good news because it means <a href="http://www.fishermansmotel.com/page1/index.html">you can score a waterfront motel room</a> for $75 per night. Apart from the beach, there isn't much to Matagorda. But if you're looking for scenic solitude on a budget, this is where you'll find it.</p> <h2>5. Rehoboth Beach, Delaware</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/new_jersey_beach_18947400.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Situated just two hours from Washington, D.C., Rehoboth Beach boasts a mile-long boardwalk along a beautiful beach as well as numerous food, entertainment, and shopping options within walking distance of the coast. In addition to the beach, the Rehoboth area has lots to offer, including the Tanger Outlets, which has 160 stores, as well as golfing, fishing, and hiking on a number of local nature trails. And with a number of <a href="http://www.anchoragemotelinc.com/rates/">no-frills rentals</a> such as the Anchorage Motel, you can rent a room for less than $100 &mdash; even during the high season.</p> <h2>6. Keansburg, New Jersey</h2> <p>This bayside town offers mesmerizing beachfront of the New York City skyline, calm waters for swimming, a fishing pier to cast your line, scenic walking trails &mdash; and a median home value of just $162,000. This <a href="http://www.zillow.com/keansburg-nj/home-values/">bargain town</a> on the famed Jersey Shore is undertaking <a href="http://patch.com/new-jersey/middletown-nj/keansburg-awarded-11-million-streetscape-revitalization-grant">a huge streetscape revitalization project</a> that promises to enhance building facades and improve walkways, something that's bound to lure in even more small businesses and vitality in the coming years. For now, room rentals at the quaint, family-owned <a href="http://www.hollyhillmotel.com/Luxury-Motel-About-West-Keansburg-NJ.html">Holly Hill Motel</a> come as low as $69 per night.</p> <p><em>What other beach destinations are budget-friendly? Share with us!</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!&nbsp;</h2> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F6-budget-friendly-beach-destinations&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F6%20Budget-Friendly%20Beach%20Destinations.jpg&amp;description=6%20Budget-Friendly%20Beach%20Destinations" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/6%20Budget-Friendly%20Beach%20Destinations.jpg" width="250" height="374" alt="" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/brittany-lyte">Brittany Lyte</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-budget-friendly-beach-destinations">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-7"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-save-on-baggage-fees">6 Ways to Save On Baggage Fees</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-take-one-vacation-day-and-save-thousands">How to Take One Vacation Day and Save Thousands</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-ways-to-save-and-make-money-while-traveling">12 Ways to Save and Make Money While Traveling</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-little-known-ways-to-save-at-disneyland">15 Little Known Ways to Save at Disneyland</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-travel-full-time-for-17000-a-year-or-less">How to Travel Full-Time for $17,000 a Year (or Less!)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Travel beach beach vacation beaches budget travel budget-friendly destination frugal living saving money travel Thu, 14 Jul 2016 10:31:04 +0000 Brittany Lyte 1751466 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Awkward Money Moments Everyone Has at Work http://www.wisebread.com/8-awkward-money-moments-everyone-has-at-work <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-awkward-money-moments-everyone-has-at-work" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_4640750_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="everyone has an awkward money moment or two at work" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Money and work go together like peanut butter and jelly. We go to work to make money, and we spend money while we're at work. But it's not always as simple as that. People and situations can make some money moments more than a little awkward, and you are left feeling all sorts of emotions. Here are eight of those occasions we'd all prefer to be stricken from the workplace.</p> <h2>1. Contributing to Gifts for People You Don't Like</h2> <p>It's fair to say, wherever you work, there will be people you like, and people you don't. There will also be the usual birthdays, anniversaries, retirements, and layoffs. That's when Janice from accounting pops around with a collection tub and asks for money to buy a gift. You are faced with the dilemma &mdash; do you chip in and say nothing, or refuse and look like a real villain? It's hard to come out and say, &quot;Nah, not putting money in, I hate that guy.&quot; You can try and act poor, or claim you don't have any money on you. However, that's usually met with, &quot;No worries, I'll put $10 in for you, pay me back later.&quot; Perhaps the only option you have left is to just avoid the collection using ninja-like skills.</p> <h2>2. Splitting the Check on a Pricey Night Out</h2> <p>The boss decides that after-work drinks are going to happen, and everyone is invited. But this is not a company-sponsored event, despite the fact that people are ordering food and drinks like everything is &quot;on the boss.&quot; After an evening of revelry, the check comes, and that's when most people say it's easier to just split the check equally among everyone. Great. Except John and Jane were knocking back $15 cocktails all night, and you were taking advantage of the 2-for-1 well drinks. So you tell everyone you want the check split based on what everyone had, making you about as popular as a cold sore&hellip; especially with your server. Is it better to pay up, and chalk it up to experience? Oof, it's very hard to win this one.</p> <h2>3. Asking for a Raise</h2> <p>You've been doing your homework on your salary, and realize you are being underpaid. Whether it's by a little, or a lot, the next move is not easy. It's time to have that awkward conversation with the boss, and you know it will not be easy. If there have been layoffs recently, it makes it even harder. Maybe you'll be met with the old &quot;you're lucky you still have a job!&quot; retort. Whatever has happened though, if you are doing the work and should be <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-money-moves-to-make-the-moment-you-get-a-promotion">getting paid more</a>, you deserve the money.</p> <h2>4. Calling in a Loan You Gave to a Coworker</h2> <p>It may only be $20, but it's been months since you forked over the cash for a coworker in need. A sad realization has dawned on you. Either they totally forgot about the money you loaned them, or they are hoping you have forgotten about it, and are doing nothing to remind you. It's time to get your money back. From the furtive glances in the office kitchen, to steering the conversations back to money, nothing is working. You have to come out and ask &mdash; which somehow makes you look like a tightwad who cares only about money. And worse still&hellip; they may tell you you'll get it back, but forget, and you have to go through it all again!</p> <h2>5. Saying No When Someone Asks to Borrow Money</h2> <p>If you don't want to get into the situation outlined above, you can simply say no when someone asks for money. But it's not as easy as that, is it? It's hard enough to pluck up the courage to ask a coworker for money, but that person is almost always going to be greeted with a &quot;Sure, how much do you need?&quot; in reply. Now, you have to drop the hammer and say no. But what good reason do you have? If it's a significant amount of money, then declining based on that is not a problem. But if it's $10&ndash;$50, and you feel sure you'll have a horrible time trying to get it back, what do you do? Saying &quot;Sorry, I'd like to, but I don't trust you to ever pay that back&quot; is not going to give you the best reputation in the office. This could be a great time to suddenly make an urgent call, and hope he or she never comes back and asks again.</p> <h2>6. Watching in Horror as Your Card Is Declined</h2> <p>It's been a fun lunch. The server comes back to the table with a mountain of receipts for people to sign. Well, except you. They have to whisper in your ear &quot;I'm sorry&hellip; this card was declined.&quot; Aaaarrgghhhhhh! If you could grow a shell and crawl inside it, you would. It may be a technical error, or it could be that the card was canceled due to a fraud alert, but it doesn't really matter right now. All you know is that a bunch of coworkers are looking at you with a mixture of pity and confusion on their collective faces. Will rumors surface that you're having money problems? Will people start offering to pay for things because they know you're having a hard time? Eek, there's no way to come out of this one without a perma-cringe on your face.</p> <h2>7. Saying No to a Charity Collection</h2> <p>Coworkers may be actively involved in fundraising for charities, or may even know someone who benefited from that charity. But let's face it, if we all contributed to every charity, we'd go broke. What's more, you may simply not agree with giving money to some charities, and that's your right. However, the fact of the matter is, when you say no to a charity collection, you are instantly seen as some kind of Scrooge figure who hoards money and hates the poor, the sick, and the disabled. And what if you say no, but then go out later to the office happy hour and drop a bunch of money on drinks? Your best bet here is to make up an excellent excuse (you gave money already to the charity last week), or offer support in another way. Your time, your skills, or something non-monetary.</p> <h2>8. Finding Out What People Earn</h2> <p>There is a reason most companies keep salary information a secret. It can lead to a lot of griping, demands for raises, or even job losses and people quitting. So when you find out what someone else in the company makes, it can really lead to some stunningly awkward moments. They may make way less than you assumed, and your reaction can make them feel awful. &quot;Really&hellip; you're only earning that? Wow!&quot; On the other hand, you could think they're overpaid, especially if they do the job you do, but for more money.</p> <p>And then there's the moment people discover what you earn. If you earn more than they expected, you can get daggers shooting at you. They expect you to pick up the check at lunch. They feel like you owe them. If it's less, suddenly you're pitied. Or laughed at for taking such a low salary. In any of these situations, red faces, long silences, and hasty exits are the norm.</p> <p><em>What was your most awkward money moment at work, and how did you deal with it?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-awkward-money-moments-everyone-has-at-work">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. 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