Holidays http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/61/all en-US 5 Money Moves to Make When It's Too Hot to Go Outside http://www.wisebread.com/5-money-moves-to-make-when-its-too-hot-to-go-outside <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-money-moves-to-make-when-its-too-hot-to-go-outside" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_with_heat_exhaustion.jpg" alt="Man with heat exhaustion" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The heat wave is coming &mdash; are you ready? For many, summer marks the start of vacation season, especially for kids or those who have several weeks off work. While it is good to take a much-needed break, don't get too lackadaisical when it comes to your bank account this season.</p> <p>Here are a few money moves you should make when it is too hot to do much else. You will be thankful later that you didn't take a vacation from managing your money wisely.</p> <h2>1. Comparison shop insurance plans</h2> <p>When you've had the same auto insurance and home insurance for over a year, you might be stuck in the mindset that you are paying the best price, especially if you shopped quotes the year previously. Recently, my husband and I thought we were getting the best price for our car insurance because it had been the cheapest option for us for the past six years, and we had racked up several discounts for being on the plan so long.</p> <p>However, replacing our paid-off SUV with a new van and having a minor accident the year before slowly made our rates creep up. I honestly didn't think another company could offer cheaper insurance, but a few quick searches online helped us find the same coverage for $500 less a year.</p> <p>Bottom line: Don't assume you are paying the best price for insurance just because your plan was the cheapest when you shopped for rates earlier. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-a-claim-will-impact-your-car-insurance?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Here's How a Claim Will Impact Your Car Insurance</a>)</p> <h2>2. Put investing on autopilot</h2> <p>Don't want to think about investing on your summer break? Me neither. Investing is similar to exercising. Only a select few really love to partake and the rest of us know we must do it to remain (financially) healthy. Thankfully, you don't have to become an expert in the stock market to start investing your money. Instead, try these simple ways to put your investments on autopilot:</p> <ul> <li> <p>Start with setting up automatic deposits from your paycheck into your 401(k) through your employer. If you can set your account to increase your investment by 1 percent each year, you can grow your retirement fund without feeling the monetary sacrifice.</p> </li> <li> <p>Use an app like <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/start-investing-today-acorns-lets-you-invest-your-change-while-you-shop?ref=internal" target="_blank">Acorns</a>, which rounds up your purchases to the nearest dollar and automatically invests your spare change.</p> </li> <li> <p>Set up automatic payments to investment accounts. Both Fidelity and Ally offer different online investment accounts where you can set up automatic transfers. While they might require a minimum amount to start the account (i.e. Ally's professionally-managed portfolio account requires $2,500 to open), you can set up small amounts of money to be transferred each week. Think about it. You really won't miss $10 to $20 a week, but setting up the transfer will equate to $520 to $1,040 invested each year.</p> </li> </ul> <p>(See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-questions-all-rookie-investors-should-ask?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Questions All Rookie Investors Should Ask</a>)</p> <h2>3. Declutter, sell, and donate</h2> <p>It may be too hot for a garage sale, but that doesn't mean you can't sell some unused items and free up space around the house. Make a game out of decluttering and tackle one small area of your air-conditioned home each day of the week. You can worry about your garage, basement, or attic in the cooler months. Make your decision quickly about what to keep, sell, and donate. Remember, anything you don't use regularly is taking up prime real estate in your home. Don't try to justify a need for it in the future.</p> <p>If the item is larger, such as a baby swing or chair, list it on Craigslist, OfferUp, or local Facebook selling groups. If the item is easy to ship and can make you more than $10, like designer jeans or an old iPad, list it on eBay. For eBay sales, I schedule postal pickups so that I don't have to deal with the heat and post office lines.</p> <p>If the item does not sell well locally or through eBay, schedule a donation pickup. Fill up a box of unwanted goods, schedule a pickup with a local second hand store, leave it on your porch, and save the donation slip for tax season. Finally, enjoy a large glass of lemonade in your decluttered home. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-easy-ways-to-earn-more-on-ebay?ref=seealso" target="_blank">11 Easy Ways to Earn More on eBay</a>)</p> <h2>4. Review your credit reports and credit score</h2> <p>Plan to get your credit in tiptop shape this summer, especially if you hope to purchase a car, home, or open a new credit card in the near future. An excellent credit score will save you money on lower interest rates.</p> <p>First things first, order a free copy of your credit report through <a href="https://www.annualcreditreport.com/index.action" target="_blank">AnnualCreditReport.com</a>. You are entitled to three free copies &mdash; one each from Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion &mdash; every year. Check the report for inaccuracies and make sure everything looks as expected. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-read-a-credit-report?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Read a Credit Report</a>)</p> <p>Next, order your credit score. You can purchase your FICO score from <a href="https://shareasale.com/r.cfm?b=1150834&amp;u=255320&amp;m=41089&amp;urllink=&amp;afftrack=" target="_blank">myFICO</a> &mdash; it will run you about $19.95 a piece from each of the three credit bureaus. You can also get a good idea of what your score is through free sites like Credit Karma and Credit Sesame, or through <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-credit-cards-that-offer-free-credit-scores?ref=internal" target="_blank">credit cards that offer free credit scores</a>.</p> <p>Note that these free scores often have their own metric for credit scoring, and that number may differ slightly from your official FICO score, which is what most lenders use when determining whether or not to approve you for credit. Still, a free score will give you a good ballpark estimate of where your score stands. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-it-worth-paying-for-your-credit-score?ref=seealso" target="_blank">I Checked My Credit Score in 11 Places &mdash; Here's What I Learned</a>)</p> <p>What I like about both Credit Karma and Credit Sesame is that they will show you which areas you need to improve to boost your score. For example, if your credit usage is too high, the site may recommend that you boost your score by paying off debt and/or increasing your credit limit, either by opening up a new card or asking for a limit increase. Of course, be aware that asking for a credit increase and opening up a new card can be reported as hard inquiries on your credit report, and too many hard inquiries can negatively affect your credit score. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-improve-your-credit-score-fast?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Ways to Improve Your Credit Score Fast</a>)</p> <h2>5. Start your holiday savings fund</h2> <p>Even though Thanksgiving and Christmas are months away, they are coming, and they will be costly. Avoid the holiday debt trap or credit card hangover by saving way ahead of time. If you start in June, you have six months to build up a savings fund without the stress. Calculate how much you spent on Thanksgiving and Christmas/Hannukah/Kwanzaa the year before, and use it as a guideline for how much you should save.</p> <p>For example, if the winter celebrations cost your family $1,000 between food shopping, decorations, presents, and outfits, divide that number by six and aim to save that much each month. It is much easier to save $167 each month for six months than to try and find an extra $1,000 in your budget between November and December. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/avoid-these-5-common-holiday-budget-pitfalls?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Avoid These 5 Common Holiday Budget Pitfalls</a>)</p> <p>Don't waste your summer months wishing you were on a beach somewhere or enviously looking at friends' and co-workers' vacation pictures. Instead, work on your finances with these easy steps so that you can be the one enjoying a debt-free vacation next year.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F5-money-moves-to-make-when-its-too-hot-to-go-outside&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F5%2520Money%2520Moves%2520to%2520Make%2520When%2520It%2527s%2520Too%2520Hot%2520to%2520Go%2520Outside.jpg&amp;description=5%20Money%20Moves%20to%20Make%20When%20It's%20Too%20Hot%20to%20Go%20Outside"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/5%20Money%20Moves%20to%20Make%20When%20It%27s%20Too%20Hot%20to%20Go%20Outside.jpg" alt="5 Money Moves to Make When It's Too Hot to Go Outside" width="250" height="374" /></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/5-money-moves-to-make-when-its-too-hot-to-go-outside">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/9-money-moves-youre-never-too-old-to-make">9 Money Moves You&#039;re Never Too Old to Make</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-easy-money-moves-to-make-on-a-rainy-day">7 Easy Money Moves to Make on a Rainy Day</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-accomplishments-you-should-be-proud-of">5 Money Accomplishments You Should Be Proud Of</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/heres-why-you-shouldnt-freak-out-if-you-miss-a-payment-due-date">Here&#039;s Why You Shouldn&#039;t Freak Out If You Miss a Payment Due Date</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-the-fair-credit-reporting-act-protects-you">How the Fair Credit Reporting Act Protects You</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance credit report credit score decluttering Holidays insurance investing money moves savings funds selling summer Mon, 21 May 2018 09:00:30 +0000 Ashley Eneriz 2140372 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Ways to Make Money Over Memorial Day Weekend http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-make-money-over-memorial-day-weekend <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-ways-to-make-money-over-memorial-day-weekend" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couple_holding_amrican_flag_and_running_in_field.jpg" alt="Couple holding amrican flag and running in field" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>With Memorial Day right around the corner, people are getting ready for a weekend of travel, hosting visitors, shopping, and parties. But for many side hustlers, Memorial Day is the perfect weekend to make some money.</p> <p>Whether you're just looking to make a few extra bucks, or you're hoping to give yourself a serious financial boost, here are a few easy ways to make money this Memorial Day weekend.</p> <h2>1. Host a garage sale</h2> <p>With an extra day tacked on to the weekend, it's a perfect opportunity to hold a garage sale. Spring clean your home and take stock of all the items you no longer want or need. Once you have an inventory, start advertising on Facebook or Craigslist to drum up your sale.</p> <p>If a garage sale isn't your thing, you can always sell used items on Craigslist, Facebook, or eBay, or use apps like LetGo and OfferUp. These apps allow you to easily post for-sale items and provide a safe way to collect payment. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-garage-sale-items-that-sell-like-hotcakes?ref=seealso" target="_blank">12 Garage Sale Items That Sell Like Hotcakes</a>)</p> <h2>2. Rent out your home</h2> <p>Since Memorial Day is a travel-heavy holiday, many people will be looking for affordable accommodations in their planned destination. If you're planning on leaving your home empty to do some travel of your own, you may as well have it earn money while you're away.</p> <p>Even if you have an extra bedroom or couch to spare, you can rent out your space on Airbnb to earn some quick cash. Just be sure you can provide a clean, safe environment and be available to answer any questions your guests may have. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-easy-ways-to-make-good-money-from-airbnb?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Easy Ways to Make Good Money From Airbnb</a>)</p> <h2>3. Do yard work</h2> <p>As the unofficial kickoff to summer, Memorial Day weekend is the time when many people take a look around their yard and realize it's in need of quite a bit of TLC. Offer your assistance to folks who don't want to &mdash; or are unable to &mdash; do all that work themselves. You could mow lawns, weed-whack, prune hedges, rake leaves, and power wash decks and siding.</p> <p>Yard work gigs aren't hard to find, as you can likely spot a few neighbors whose lawn could use a refresh. Ask around your neighborhood and you will be sure to find business.</p> <h2>4. Pet sit</h2> <p>Do you have any friends who might be out of town for the long weekend? Do those friends have dogs or cats at home? Offer to pet sit for them and earn a few extra dollars.</p> <p>You can also use a site like Rover.com to sign up as a pet sitter. You can choose to watch the pet in your own home or in the owner's house. Many pet sitters earn $20 to $40 per night, per pet, making it a pretty well-paying side hustle. Plus, if you enjoy animals, you get the added benefit of spending time with some furry friends. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-400-a-week-as-a-pet-sitter?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Make $400+ a Week as a Pet Sitter</a>)</p> <h2>5. Work in retail</h2> <p>Memorial Day brings the masses to the stores to shop sales and stock up on summer necessities. As such, some retailers are in need of additional part-time or seasonal help. If you have the time and can provide exceptional customer service, there is likely a seasonal job for you. Ask around your local area to see who is hiring.</p> <h2>6. House sit</h2> <p>Since many people are traveling for Memorial Day weekend, you can take advantage and offer to house sit for your friends or family. Most of the time, all you have to do as a housesitter is check the mail, water the plants, and make sure everything is secure and in order. What could be easier than getting paid to hang out in someone else's home?</p> <h2>7. Event staff</h2> <p>Your town may be hosting public celebrations over Memorial Day weekend, such as block parties, bonfires, or concerts. These events need staff. Check out event venues as well as your local Chamber of Commerce to see if any jobs are available.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F7-ways-to-make-money-over-memorial-day-weekend&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F7%2520Ways%2520to%2520Make%2520Money%2520Over%2520Memorial%2520Day%2520Weekend.jpg&amp;description=7%20Ways%20to%20Make%20Money%20Over%20Memorial%20Day%20Weekend"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/7%20Ways%20to%20Make%20Money%20Over%20Memorial%20Day%20Weekend.jpg" alt="7 Ways to Make Money Over Memorial Day Weekend" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/rachel-slifka">Rachel Slifka</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-make-money-over-memorial-day-weekend">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/11-ways-to-make-money-while-at-the-beach-this-summer">11 Ways to Make Money While at the Beach This Summer</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/9-easy-ways-retirees-can-earn-extra-income">9 Easy Ways Retirees Can Earn Extra Income</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/carving-pumpkins-and-14-other-cool-ways-to-make-cash-from-fall-holidays">Carving Pumpkins and 14 Other Cool Ways to Make Cash From Fall Holidays</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-creative-ways-to-boost-your-retirement-savings">9 Creative Ways to Boost Your Retirement Savings</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/4-ways-to-find-income-while-waiting-for-full-retirement-age">4 Ways to Find Income While Waiting for Full Retirement Age</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income AirBnb garage sales Holidays house sitting making money memorial day part time jobs pet sitting retail side gigs yard work Fri, 11 May 2018 09:00:10 +0000 Rachel Slifka 2131735 at http://www.wisebread.com 4 Ways to Make Money From St. Patrick's Day http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-make-money-from-st-patricks-day <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/4-ways-to-make-money-from-st-patricks-day" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/two_girls_in_a_wig_and_a_cap.jpg" alt="Two girls in a wig and a cap" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>With St. Patrick's Day around the corner, you're probably anticipating things like parades, pub crawls, and all the green-themed festivities to come. You might even be looking forward to some of your favorite foods that show up around this time of year: McDonald's famous Shamrock Shake, Irish soda bread, and, of course, corned beef and cabbage.</p> <p>According to the National Retail Federation, Americans planned to spend a whopping $5.3 billion for St. Patrick's Day 2017. Presumably, that number could rise for 2018 if past spending trends continue. Either way, St. Patrick's Day means big businesses for cities, venues and, if you play your cards right, people like you.</p> <p>If you want to capitalize on all the ways people will be spending money for St. Patrick's Day, here are some ideas to get you started.</p> <h2>Create and sell St. Patrick's Day crafts</h2> <p>You can search for popular St. Patty's Day crafts that people are looking to buy on sites like Pinterest or Etsy. You'll find tons of ideas that will inspire you to get creative. People are often looking to buy party favors, home decor, clothing, knickknacks, and other accessories to make their favorite Irish holiday complete. If you can make some of these yourself, you could see the profits roll in.</p> <p>If you're more of a designer than a crafter, you can start a tee shirt campaign with no money at all. Places like Bonfire, TeeSpring, and SunFrog let you design a custom shirt and presell it so the printing is fully funded. Once your shirt ships to your customers, the production platform takes a cut and sends the leftover profits to you.</p> <p>Advertise your creations on social media or on marketplaces like Etsy, eBay, Mercari, or Offer Up. It's best to get started early so you have enough time to research your idea, create it, advertise, and make sales. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-sites-to-sell-your-arts-and-crafts?Ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 5 Best Sites to Sell Your Arts and Crafts</a>)</p> <h2>Ride sharing</h2> <p>With all the parties, parades, pub crawls, and related celebrations that usually take place around St. Patricks Day, there will be a lot of drinking. People who spend the day (and night) drinking will need safe, responsible ways to get to and from various locations. Plus, those who need to get around the crowds in major cities will need help with the hassles of parking or transporting small kids in the massive crowds. That's where ride sharing comes in.</p> <p>As a driver for Uber or Lyft, you stand to make a decent profit in such a peak time. If you time your availability right, you could find yourself pretty busy on the weekend and weekdays leading up to St. Patrick's Day, when many celebrations take place. Make sure you are close to the action and get approved as a driver beforehand to make the most of this opportunity. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-earn-extra-money-driving-for-uber-or-lyft?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Earn Extra Money Driving for Uber or Lyft</a>)</p> <h2>Baby-sit</h2> <p>Again, from the party perspective, this gig could be the &quot;gold at the end of the rainbow.&quot; Think about it. There's bound to be parents who'll use this opportunity to party hard without the kiddies in tow. Baby sitters can be pretty hard to come by in some places, so it's likely there will be a premium for baby-sitting around &quot;hot&quot; times like St. Patrick's Day.</p> <p>Use online sitter marketplaces like Chime, Sittercity, or Care.com. It doesn't hurt to check pet care apps like Rover or Wag, either &mdash; pet parents will need care for their fur babies, too.</p> <p>Start building your profile as early as you can. Go through the proper vetting and maybe even get a few jobs under your belt for reviews. This way, you will be a desirable candidate when parents (or pet parents) start their search for a sitter for St. Patrick's Day.</p> <h2>Be a hired hand</h2> <p>Many government and private citizens host St. Patrick's Day celebrations, which means there will be lots of extra work to go around. You can call down to your local city or village hall to find out what additional services might be needed during city-sponsored celebrations.</p> <p>You can also put a listing in the &quot;gigs&quot; section of Craigslist or your local Facebook marketplace advertising any services you can offer. There are even Facebook groups where people sell recipes and crafts for holidays like St. Patrick's Day.</p> <p>Whatever you're offering, there's bound to be plenty to do as many gear up to make the most of the fun times to be had on St. Patrick's Day.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F4-ways-to-make-money-from-st-patricks-day&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F4%2520Ways%2520to%2520Make%2520Money%2520From%2520St.%2520Patricks%2520Day.jpg&amp;description=4%20Ways%20to%20Make%20Money%20From%20St.%20Patricks%20Day"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/4%20Ways%20to%20Make%20Money%20From%20St.%20Patricks%20Day.jpg" alt="4 Ways to Make Money From St. Patrick's Day" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/aja-mcclanahan">Aja McClanahan</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-make-money-from-st-patricks-day">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/11-ways-to-make-money-while-at-the-beach-this-summer">11 Ways to Make Money While at the Beach This Summer</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-seasonal-side-hustles-thatll-cover-your-holiday-spending">8 Seasonal Side Hustles That&#039;ll Cover Your Holiday Spending</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-creative-ways-to-make-money-on-super-bowl-sunday">8 Creative Ways to Make Money on Super Bowl Sunday</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-ways-to-make-money-over-memorial-day-weekend">7 Ways to Make Money Over Memorial Day Weekend</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-to-earn-extra-money-with-your-car">7 Ways to Earn Extra Money With Your Car</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income baby-sitting crafts fast cash helping Holidays lyft ride sharing selling side gigs St. Patrick's Day Uber Mon, 05 Mar 2018 10:00:06 +0000 Aja McClanahan 2111122 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Ways Being Single is Better for Your Bank Account http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-being-single-is-better-for-your-bank-account <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-ways-being-single-is-better-for-your-bank-account" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/love_or_money_concept.jpg" alt="Love or money concept" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Valentine's Day is once again fast approaching. People in relationships are saving up to treat their partner to something special. And for those seeking romance, it's a great opportunity to drop a few hints with a card and candy. But for the millions of people who are single, this time of year can really suck.</p> <p>If you fall into the latter category, take heart. You may not be part of a couple, but your bank account will adore you. Here's why.</p> <h2>1. Valentine's Day is a money suck</h2> <p>Romance is big business in America, and retailers will do everything they can to get you opening your wallet. In 2017, USA Today found that Americans spent over $18 billion on the day for lovers.</p> <p>Think about all the good that money could have done; schools, hospitals, care for sick people. Instead, it was spent on overpriced roses, chocolates, teddy bears, jewelry, fancy meals, and lingerie. This equates to the average consumer spending around $137 on February 14, although clearly some people are spending way more.</p> <p>If you're single and like the idea of chocolates and flowers, wait until the day after. They'll be reduced by 50 to 75 percent (or more in some cases) for the exact same products. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-ways-to-spend-less-money-on-valentines-day?ref=seealso" target="_blank">14 Ways to Spend Less Money on Valentine's Day</a>)</p> <h2>2. Your food budget goes a lot further</h2> <p>When you're shopping for two, you spend a lot more than when you're on your own. For a start, the chances of you both loving all the same foods is slim. Speaking from personal experience, I can meal prep the same food that I love for the whole week and eat it every night. It's cheap, it's balanced, and it suits me just fine. In a couple, that was a complete no-go. The same meal every night? No way. That means more ingredients, more recipes, and more money.</p> <p>What's more, dining out as a single person is not as attractive a proposition as dining with a partner, so less is spent on restaurants and other eateries. And when you do eat out alone, you're spending at least half as much. Couples have a tendency to splurge on wine, desserts, and so on. When you're eating alone, you don't want to linger for as long, and that means less time to eat, drink, and spend. Those savings are delicious.</p> <h2>3. Weddings aren't cheap</h2> <p>If you're fretting about the couples around you that are planning to get married, this little statistic should ease the pain considerably: According to The Knot, the average cost of a wedding in the USA in 2016 was a staggering $35,329.</p> <p>That is up $2,688 from 2015, which means you can expect that average to be even higher this year. After the cost of food and wine, renting a venue, a DJ or band, flowers, cake, invitations, photographs, and favors, the average price per guest rose to $245.</p> <p>That's right, you're spending that much for each and every guest you invite. And let's not forget the cost of the wedding dress, the ring, and the expensive honeymoon after the big day. You can easily kick-start married life with over $40,000 in debt. Consider that next time you see a couple walk down the aisle.</p> <h2>4. You have time to focus on your career and your finances</h2> <p>Relationships eat up time. There's just no getting around that fact. Of course, people in happy relationships will point out that it's exactly the reason they're seeing someone; they want to spend time in the company of someone they love, and why wouldn't they? But this has to come with a sacrifice, and usually it's the career and the ability to make money that suffers.</p> <p>The relationship will take a hit if one of you is working late night after night, or canceling plans at the weekend to pitch on new business. Guilt sets in, and instead of devoting time to a higher salary and new opportunities, it becomes the norm to spend free time eating out, going to movies, and taking weekend trips to the mountains or the beach. That means instead of using your free time to earn money, you're using it to spend money. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-ways-to-make-money-from-valentines-day?ref=seealso" target="_blank">13 Ways to Make Money From Valentine's Day</a>)</p> <h2>5. No more spending money on gifts</h2> <p>Aside from Valentine's Day, there are plenty of other dates on the calendar that make you spend money. Birthdays, anniversaries, and major holidays will hit you in the bank account throughout the year. Depending on what your partner is into, these gifts can set you back hundreds (or even thousands) of dollars. Forget the watches, clothes, gadgets, and gift cards, and instead save the money. Or, buy yourself something you've always wanted. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-fun-facts-about-valentines-day-spending?ref=seealso" target="_blank">12 Fun Facts About Valentine's Day Spending</a>)</p> <h2>6. Vacations are cheaper alone</h2> <p>Most couples like to do things the traditional (and expensive) way when they go on vacation. A hotel room, rental car, taxis, shows, restaurants, and bars are usually part of the mix. But when you're single, your options open up considerably, and the cost of your vacation can drop dramatically.</p> <p>For a start, as a single traveler, a site like <a href="https://www.couchsurfing.com/" target="_blank">Couchsurfing</a> can be a huge money-saver, and it's also a great way to meet other people and make new friends. You could also use Airbnb to find a bedroom in a local house that is way cheaper than a hotel room. You don't have to compromise on anything. Eat the food you want. Go where you want. Spend as little as you want. Single travelers have much more freedom, and way more options available. When you have more options, you have more opportunities to save money.</p> <h2>7. Two people means double the debt</h2> <p>The average person with credit card debt owes $5,331 on their cards, according to CreditDonkey. When you become part of a serious relationship, and get married, you combine the debts you owe. That means you are now responsible for twice what you were before.</p> <p>Admittedly, you probably have two salaries (although not every couple has two incomes), but it can become daunting to look at the combined debts you have to pay off. As a single person, your debts are your own. And you can choose to live very frugally to pay off your debts, which can be a lot more difficult to do when your partner doesn't want to eat ramen and eggs four times a week.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F7-ways-being-single-is-better-for-your-bank-account&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F7%2520Ways%2520Being%2520Single%2520is%2520Better%2520for%2520Your%2520Bank%2520Account%2520%25281%2529.jpg&amp;description=7%20Ways%20Being%20Single%20is%20Better%20for%20Your%20Bank%20Account"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/7%20Ways%20Being%20Single%20is%20Better%20for%20Your%20Bank%20Account%20%281%29.jpg" alt="7 Ways Being Single is Better for Your Bank Account" width="250" height="374" /></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/7-ways-being-single-is-better-for-your-bank-account">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-excuses-we-need-to-stop-making-about-overspending">5 Excuses We Need to Stop Making About Overspending</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/3-smart-ways-to-save-on-fathers-day">3 Smart Ways to Save on Father&#039;s Day</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/save-on-christmas-shopping-with-this-clever-gift-card-strategy">Save on Christmas Shopping With This Clever Gift Card Strategy</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/13-financial-gifts-to-give-yourself-this-holiday-season">13 Financial Gifts to Give Yourself This Holiday Season</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/11-ways-to-prepare-for-your-best-black-friday">11 Ways to Prepare for Your Best Black Friday</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Shopping budgeting couples dates food costs gifts Holidays saving money single spending less travel Valentine's Day Tue, 06 Feb 2018 09:30:08 +0000 Paul Michael 2096005 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Fastest Ways to Recover From Holiday Overspending http://www.wisebread.com/7-fastest-ways-to-recover-from-holiday-overspending <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-fastest-ways-to-recover-from-holiday-overspending" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/busy_santa_woman.jpg" alt="Busy Santa woman" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Consumers said they planned to spend an average $967 during the 2017 holiday season, according to research from the National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights &amp; Analytics.</p> <p>That's a lot of money, and you can bet that plenty of holiday shoppers blew their budgets in the process. But here's some good news: Even if you were overly generous this season, you can take steps to recover financially from all that holiday overspending. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-secrets-to-a-debt-free-holiday-season?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Secrets to a Debt-Free Holiday Season</a>)</p> <h2>1. Return what you don't want</h2> <p>If you were generous with others this holiday season, they might have been equally generous with you. This means you might have plenty of holiday gifts sitting around &mdash; maybe some gifts you don't even want or need.</p> <p>If you have the receipts, by all means, return them. Hopefully, you can get cash in exchange. But even if you can't, you'll probably be able to turn your unwanted gifts into store credit. You can then shop at that store on someone else's dime without dipping into your own wallet.</p> <p>Don't worry about hurting someone's feelings here. The main point is to get back on your feet financially, and every little bit helps. (Besides, you don't have to tell Aunt Julia that you aren't going to wear that sweater.)</p> <h2>2. Use those gift cards</h2> <p>The odds are high that you received gift cards this year. The National Retail Federation estimated that 2017 holiday shoppers each planned to purchase around four gift cards with an average value of $45 per card.</p> <p>Too many people throw them in a drawer or tuck them in a wallet and then forget about them. If you got gift cards, <em>use them</em>. Again, these handy cards will let you purchase clothing, electronics, or restaurant meals without you having to spend your own cash. Then, send the dollars you're saving on those splurges toward paying down credit card or other high-interest debt. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-turn-unwanted-gift-cards-into-cash?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Turn Unwanted Gift Cards Into Cash</a>)</p> <h2>3. Pay more than the minimum on your credit cards</h2> <p>You might not want to think about credit card debt right after the holidays, but it's important to not ignore it. Whatever you do, don't only make the minimum required payment. If you do, it can take you years, and cost loads of interest, to pay off that debt.</p> <p>Say you owe $7,000 on a credit card with an interest rate of 18 percent. If you make the 4 percent minimum required payment each month, it will take you 147 months &mdash; or more than 12 years &mdash; to pay off that debt. You'll also pay a total of more than $11,000 on the card. And that assumes you don't make any additional purchases with it.</p> <p>Your goal is to pay off <em>more</em> than the minimum every month. Otherwise, you'll be paying off those holiday mittens and scarves for years. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dealing-with-post-holiday-credit-card-debt?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Dealing With Post-Holiday Credit Card Debt</a>)</p> <h2>4. Stop adding to your debt</h2> <p>Of course, you'll struggle to ever pay off your holiday debt if you don't first stop adding to it. Make a resolution to stop using your credit cards to pay for items. Instead, use your debit cards or cash for your purchases.</p> <p>This will require planning, and maybe a bit of sacrifice. You might have to wait to buy that new laptop until you've saved up enough to pay for it in cash. But you'll be thankful as you watch that credit card debt steadily disappear.</p> <h2>5. Start an emergency fund</h2> <p>If you've resolved to pay down your holiday debt, you'll need savings. What if your water heater bursts or your car conks out? If you don't have any money saved up, you'll have to put those repairs on your credit cards, adding more to your debt levels.</p> <p>A better move is to start creating an emergency fund. As the name suggests, an emergency fund is a stash of cash that you stow in a safe place, like a savings account. You withdraw from the fund to cover any unexpected emergencies.</p> <p>You'll eventually want an emergency fund that has from six months' to a year's worth of daily living expenses in it. That may sound intimidating, but you can start slowly. By investing at least $200 a month in an emergency fund, you'll have $2,400 by the time a year passes. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-easy-ways-to-build-an-emergency-fund-from-0?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Easy Ways to Build an Emergency Fund From $0</a>)</p> <h2>6. Make some sacrifices</h2> <p>The more money you have to devote to your holiday debt, the better. Start the new year by cutting back on unnecessary expenses. All those trips to restaurants and the movies add up. If you cut down on your discretionary spending, you might have $200 or more extra each month to put toward reducing your holiday debt.</p> <h2>7. Get in selling mode</h2> <p>Maybe you received plenty of stuff during the holiday season &mdash; you might even have too much stuff. If so, sell some of it off, either online or through a yard sale. The extra money you make by selling a Crock-Pot or tablet that you no longer need can bring in some much-needed extra cash that you can use to pay down that mountain of debt.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F7-fastest-ways-to-recover-from-holiday-overspending&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F7%2520Fastest%2520Ways%2520to%2520Recover%2520From%2520Holiday%2520Overspending.jpg&amp;description=7%20Fastest%20Ways%20to%20Recover%20From%20Holiday%20Overspending"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/7%20Fastest%20Ways%20to%20Recover%20From%20Holiday%20Overspending.jpg" alt="7 Fastest Ways to Recover From Holiday Overspending" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-fastest-ways-to-recover-from-holiday-overspending">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/13-financial-gifts-to-give-yourself-this-holiday-season">13 Financial Gifts to Give Yourself This Holiday Season</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-money-goals-you-should-set-for-the-holidays">10 Money Goals You Should Set for the Holidays</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/10-ways-to-tidy-up-your-finances-before-the-holidays">10 Ways to Tidy Up Your Finances Before the Holidays</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-bounce-back-from-your-holiday-splurge">How to Bounce Back From Your Holiday Splurge</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/8-secrets-to-a-debt-free-holiday-season">8 Secrets to a Debt-Free Holiday Season</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance bouncing back Christmas credit card debt emergency funds gifts Holidays overspending returns shopping Tue, 02 Jan 2018 10:00:06 +0000 Dan Rafter 2070211 at http://www.wisebread.com Why Some Economists Say You Should Give Cash Instead of Gifts http://www.wisebread.com/why-some-economists-say-you-should-give-cash-instead-of-gifts <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/why-some-economists-say-you-should-give-cash-instead-of-gifts" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/money_origami_snowflake.jpg" alt="Money Origami snowflake" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If Christmas shopping gives you the blues, and you labor over the thought of selecting the best gifts to no avail, you now have permission to stop. That's right. &quot;Scroogenomics&quot; may provide the peace of mind you seek during this festive, gift-giving season. In this retelling of Charles Dickens' classic tale, the lesson is to give generously, but not the type of stuff that typically ends up wrapped in paper and bows. Cash is king in this version, and other types of gifts are deemed a waste of time and money. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-fun-ways-to-wrap-the-gift-of-cash?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Fun Ways to Wrap the Gift of Cash</a>)</p> <h2>The reality behind &quot;Scroogenomics&quot;</h2> <p>Economist and University of Minnesota professor Joel Waldfogel coined the term in his 2009 book, <em>Scroogenomics: Why You Shouldn't Buy Presents for the Holidays</em>. The reason behind Waldfogel's anti-gift stance isn't because he dislikes his friends and family. He simply believes giving gifts is a colossal waste of money. In fact, he calls gift giving an &quot;orgy of wealth destruction.&quot;</p> <p>Waldfogel suggests that we waste our money by buying the wrong gifts, completely underwhelming the recipient with stuff they don't even want. For the unimpressed giftees among us, the thought actually doesn't count.</p> <p>According to Waldfogel's theory, we alone are the best judge of the products or services that bring us joy. Gift givers often miss the mark, thus gifts go underused and money is wasted. Waldfogel argues that gifts are best received when given to children or people that we know very well. &quot;With everyone else, we might be better off giving cash or gift cards,&quot; he writes. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-to-monetize-your-unwanted-gifts?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Get Rid of Your Unwanted Gifts and Make Money Too</a>)</p> <h2>The solution: Give cash</h2> <p>Before you dismiss Scroogenomics as a cynical case of <em>bah humbug</em>, consider this. Annie Leonard, co-writer of the short film <em>The Story of Stuff</em>, shares that only 1 percent of the materials we use to produce consumer goods (including the items themselves) are still in use six months after purchase. That doesn't mean that 99 percent of those goods end up in the landfill. It does mean that 99 percent of the planet's resources that were consumed in the making of those goods were. Not only is your unwanted and underappreciated gift a big waste of money &mdash; it's a colossal waste of the world's resources.</p> <p>According to the National Retail Federation, American consumers will spend an average $967 on holiday gifts this year. If the vast majority of those gifts are just going to waste, wouldn't giving cash be a more appropriate use of your time, energy, and hard-earned resources? And considering the NRF found that 61 percent of recipients would actually<em> prefer</em> some type of gift card or certificate instead of an object, there's even less reason to believe that &quot;stuff&quot; is the ticket to a well-received present.</p> <p>Cash as a gift tends to feel less exciting and tangible these days, since money transfers can be done with the click of a button or through a smartphone. But, giving cash also doesn't have to include forking over a manilla envelope stuffed with bills. Your thoughtful cash gift can take many forms. For example:</p> <ul> <li> <p>Donate to a charity on behalf of a loved one. Think about a cause near and dear to the recipient's heart and share the gift in their name. Your donation is also tax deductible, so this gift is a win-win-win (be sure to save the receipt!). The environment will thank you, too. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-charities-you-can-trust-with-your-holiday-donations?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Charities You Can Trust With Your Holiday Donations</a>)</p> </li> <li> <p>Open a savings or investment account for the recipient and stock that full of cold hard cash. This is the gift that literally keeps on giving. Can you say compound interest?</p> </li> <li> <p>Earmark the money for an outing or travel excursion that you and the recipient can plan together. These are memories that will last longer than the stuff destined for a landfill near you. Plus, who wouldn't love a free trip?</p> </li> </ul> <p>If your need to experience the warm fuzzies of gift giving won't allow you to simply give cash, compliment your cash gift with a craft. A money tree made of dollar bills or a folded-bill chain combine the joy of making something for your recipient, with the utility of giving cash. This way, everyone can enjoy the holidays and get exactly what brings them joy. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-why-you-should-ask-for-cash-this-christmas?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Reasons Why You Should Ask for Cash This Christmas</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fwhy-some-economists-say-you-should-give-cash-instead-of-gifts&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FWhy%2520Some%2520Economists%2520Say%2520You%2520Should%2520Give%2520Cash%2520Instead%2520of%2520Gifts.jpg&amp;description=Why%20Some%20Economists%20Say%20You%20Should%20Give%20Cash%20Instead%20of%20Gifts"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/Why%20Some%20Economists%20Say%20You%20Should%20Give%20Cash%20Instead%20of%20Gifts.jpg" alt="Why Some Economists Say You Should Give Cash Instead of Gifts" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/toni-husbands">Toni Husbands</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-some-economists-say-you-should-give-cash-instead-of-gifts">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/10-money-goals-you-should-set-for-the-holidays">10 Money Goals You Should Set for the Holidays</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/9-gifts-that-wont-become-clutter">9 Gifts That Won&#039;t Become Clutter</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/teach-your-kids-about-money-with-their-holiday-gift-lists">Teach Your Kids About Money With Their Holiday Gift Lists</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/5-excuses-we-need-to-stop-making-about-overspending">5 Excuses We Need to Stop Making About Overspending</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/4-top-money-lessons-to-learn-from-ruth-soukups-unstuffed">4 Top Money Lessons to Learn From Ruth Soukup&#039;s &quot;Unstuffed&quot;</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance cash clutter gifts Holidays material goods presents things unwanted gifts wasting money Mon, 11 Dec 2017 10:00:07 +0000 Toni Husbands 2068120 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: How to Be a Frugal Parent During the Holidays http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-how-to-be-a-frugal-parent-during-the-holidays <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-how-to-be-a-frugal-parent-during-the-holidays" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/mother_child_christmas_636545352.jpg" alt="Mother being frugal parent during the holidays" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found articles on how to be a frugal parent during the holidays, easy investment tips for beginners, and what to do with your time and money when you retire.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="https://www.thesimpledollar.com/how-to-be-a-frugal-parent-during-the-holiday-season/">How to Be a Frugal Parent During the Holiday Season</a> &mdash; Get your kids thinking about what the holidays are like without gifts. Talk about things you can do as a family that everyone would enjoy. [The Simple Dollar]</p> <p><a href="https://fortunateinvestor.com/investing-beginners-easy-tips-2017/">Investments for Beginners: 5 Easy Tips to Try in 2018</a> &mdash; Investing doesn't have to be intimating, stressful, and risky just because you're new at it. Learn how to invest your money so that it works for you! [The Fortunate Investor]</p> <p><a href="https://www.listenmoneymatters.com/how-to-retire-decumulation/">How To Retire: What To Do With Your Time And Money</a> &mdash; Work is such a big part of everyday life that it can be difficult to transition to a life without it.&nbsp; [Listen Money Matters]</p> <p><a href="http://www.currentoncurrency.com/6-tips-overcome-vacation-debt/">6 Tips to Overcome Vacation Debt</a> &mdash; Consider buying souvenirs when you first arrive at your destination and be done with spending on knickknacks for the rest of your trip! [Current on Currency]</p> <p><a href="http://yourmoneyyourfreedom.com/7-easy-ways-to-maximize-your-money-this-christmas/">7 Easy Ways To Maximize Money This Christmas</a> &mdash; Yes, you <em>can</em> save money this Christmas&hellip;and maybe even <em>make</em> some money, too!&nbsp; [FreeUp]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="https://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/DIY-Citrus-Scented-Kitchen-Cleaning-Products-36750343">3 Essential DIY Cleaners That Will Make Your Kitchen Sparkle</a> &mdash;These all-natural sprays are just as effective as store-bought cleaners at eliminating dirt and grime. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="https://moneyqanda.com/how-to-start-saving/">How to Get a Month Ahead in Savings Without Much Income</a> &mdash; <em>Do</em> sweat the small stuff. Little changes can lead to gigantic savings in the long term. [Money Q&amp;A]</p> <p><a href="http://moneyminiblog.com/mortgage-home/sell-your-home-quickly/">5 Crucial Steps to Sell Your Home Quickly</a> &mdash; Your property should not only look good, it needs to smell good, too. Make sure you deal with any funky odors before potential buyers show up, especially if you have pets. [Money Mini Blog]</p> <p><a href="https://dyernews.com/3-things-you-should-be-doing-to-promote-your-small-business-online/">3 Things You Should be Doing to Promote Your Small Business Online</a> &mdash; Start experimenting with video if you haven't already! Your video content can help you improve SEO and reach new customers. [Dyer News]</p> <p><a href="https://www.csmonitor.com/Environment/2017/1203/Forest-gumption-How-scientists-are-tapping-everything-from-drones-to-pruning-shears-to-stem-global-warming">Forest gumption: How scientists are tapping everything from drones to pruning shears to stem global warming</a> &mdash; Scientists and researchers around the world are thinking outside the box to help solve global warming. [The Christian Science Monitor]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amy-lu">Amy Lu</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-how-to-be-a-frugal-parent-during-the-holidays">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-frugal-living-skills-you-should-be-teaching-your-children">7 Frugal Living Skills You Should Be Teaching Your Children</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/should-you-make-your-young-kids-pay-rent">Should You Make Your Young Kids Pay &quot;Rent?&quot;</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-affordable-alternatives-to-pet-boarding">5 Affordable Alternatives to Pet Boarding</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-gifts-that-wont-become-clutter">9 Gifts That Won&#039;t Become Clutter</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-ways-to-tidy-up-your-finances-before-the-holidays">10 Ways to Tidy Up Your Finances Before the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Family best money tips Holidays parenting Wed, 06 Dec 2017 09:30:06 +0000 Amy Lu 2067209 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Smart Financial Gifts to Give Your Kids This Year http://www.wisebread.com/6-smart-financial-gifts-to-give-your-kids-this-year <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-smart-financial-gifts-to-give-your-kids-this-year" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/mother_and_daughter_with_piggy_bank.jpg" alt="Mother and daughter with piggy bank" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>American poet Maya Angelou said it best: &quot;When you know better, you do better.&quot; The earlier that your kids develop good financial habits, the brighter their financial future will be.</p> <p>With the holidays right around the corner, now is the perfect time to set your sights on one or more of these financial gifts that will help your kids learn about, respect, and appreciate money.</p> <h2>1. Monopoly</h2> <p>Since 1935, this classic board game has entertained millions of people around the world. Turns out that playing rounds with &quot;Monopoly money&quot; can actually help build real life financial skills, such as negotiation, money management, and diversification. Plus, a round of Monopoly is a good way to practice arithmetic and social skills. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/holiday-gifts-6-fun-games-that-teach-money-and-finance?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Holiday Gifts: TK Fun Games That Teach Money and Finance</a>)</p> <h2>2. Custodial investment account</h2> <p>Most brokerage firms offer a custodial account that allows children to get a first taste of investing in the stock market under the supervision of a parent or guardian. With as little as $100, you could open a custodial account and let your kid make decisions about what stocks to hold or sell.</p> <p>In 2017, you can contribute up to $14,000 to a custodial account and still avoid gift taxes. In 2018, the annual federal gift exclusion moves up to $15,000. Your kid's custodial account is under your control until your kid legally becomes an adult, which happens somewhere between age 18 and 21, depending on your state's rules.</p> <p>A custodial investment account is a great way to get your child excited about investing and let them learn from firsthand experience how the stock market works. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-stocks-your-kids-would-love-to-own?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Stocks Your Kids Would Love to Own</a>).</p> <h2>3. Custodial Roth IRA</h2> <p>If your kid is already working a summer job or earning income from their own business, consider setting up a custodial Roth IRA for them. In 2017 and 2018, individuals may contribute up to $5,500 to a custodial Roth IRA. Here are a couple of reasons why this is a good idea:</p> <ul> <li> <p>Your child will have the same contribution limit as an adult, making it a real-life lesson in cultivating a good savings habit.</p> </li> <li> <p>Your child can get close to a decade of extra compounding interest for their nest egg.</p> </li> <li> <p>By taking the tax hit now, your child's retirement savings will grow tax-free forever.</p> </li> <li> <p>Your child will have another &quot;sandbox&quot; in which to make real-life decisions with investments.</p> </li> </ul> <p>Just imagine if <em>you </em>knew how life-changing investing in equities could be at such a young age.</p> <p>That alone may be the best financial gift for your kid this holiday season! (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-investing-lessons-you-must-teach-your-kids?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Investing Lessons You Must Teach Your Kids</a>)</p> <h2>4. 529 savings plan</h2> <p>The average class of 2016 graduate left school with $37,172 in student loan debt. If you could do something now to help prevent your kid from having to take out such costly student loans, that would certainly be a gift worth giving. The good news is you <em>can</em> do this by starting a 529 college savings plan. Eligible education expenses under a 529 plan go beyond tuition and academic fees and include expenses for room and board, transportation, equipment, and accommodations for individuals with special needs.</p> <p>Contributions to a 529 plan grow tax-free and the money is not taxed when it's withdrawn to pay for college expenses. In addition to federal tax savings, more than 30 states currently offer a full or partial tax deduction or credit for 529 plan contributions. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-9-best-state-529-college-savings-plans?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 9 Best State 529 College Savings Plans</a>)</p> <h2>5. Cash</h2> <p>Yup, cash is still king. Regardless of their age, your kid will always love receiving a few bills as a gift. The main reason to gift cash during the holiday season is that it opens the door to have an ongoing conversation with your kids about budgeting. With a cash gift, you'll have plenty of chances to talk about what they're planning to buy, what they actually purchase, and how much money they have left. From there, you can start making it a habit to sit down with your son or daughter to talk about finances on a weekly or Bi-Weekly basis. It's a good time to catch up about other non-related finance topics as well. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-help-your-kid-build-their-first-budget?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Help Your Kid Build Their First Budget</a>)</p> <h2>6. Checking account with debit card and checkbook</h2> <p>Of course, this would be a great place for any cash gifts that your son or daughter receives from relatives and friends during the holidays (and throughout the year).</p> <p>While a checking account may not be as exciting as a new Xbox or bike, you can be sure that this gift is the one that your child will be using for the longest time. It's important that your kids start to build experience managing a checking account so they understand how to pay for everyday expenses, build a monthly budget, and safely use debit cards. By covering the ins and outs of how a checking account works when they're young, your kid will have one less thing to stress about as they get a little older or go off to college.</p> <p>No matter what your child's plans are, anyone can benefit from learning how to use a debit card, write checks, access an online account portal, and read a checking account statement.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F6-smart-financial-gifts-to-give-your-kids-this-year&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F6%2520Smart%2520Financial%2520Gifts%2520to%2520Give%2520Your%2520Kids%2520This%2520Year.jpg&amp;description=6%20Smart%20Financial%20Gifts%20to%20Give%20Your%20Kids%20This%20Year"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/6%20Smart%20Financial%20Gifts%20to%20Give%20Your%20Kids%20This%20Year.jpg" alt="6 Smart Financial Gifts to Give Your Kids This Year" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/damian-davila">Damian Davila</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-smart-financial-gifts-to-give-your-kids-this-year">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/how-to-use-the-holidays-to-teach-kids-about-money">How to Use the Holidays to Teach Kids About 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/teach-your-kids-about-money-with-their-holiday-gift-lists">Teach Your Kids About Money With Their Holiday Gift Lists</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-moves-every-single-parent-should-make">5 Money Moves Every Single Parent Should Make</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-fun-games-that-teach-your-kids-about-money">6 Fun Games That Teach Your Kids About 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/should-you-make-your-young-kids-pay-rent">Should You Make Your Young Kids Pay &quot;Rent?&quot;</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Family 529 plans budgeting cash checking accounts children Christmas custodial roth ira financial gifts games Holidays investing kids Fri, 01 Dec 2017 09:00:06 +0000 Damian Davila 2064624 at http://www.wisebread.com Ask the Readers: How Do You Save Money During the Holidays? http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-how-do-you-save-money-during-the-holidays <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/ask-the-readers-how-do-you-save-money-during-the-holidays" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_christmas_piggy_bank_174784279.jpg" alt="Woman saving money during the holidays" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p><em>Editor's Note: Congratulations to Kim, Mary, and Gina for winning this week's contest!</em></p> <p>'Tis the season...to keep an eye on your money so you don't blow your budget on the holiday spending. Between gifts and parties, decorations and vacations, it's easy to rack up expenses that you don't usually make the rest of the year.</p> <p><strong>How do you save money during the holidays?</strong> What are some of your usual expenses? What areas are you willing to sacrifice, and what areas are you willing to splurge on?</p> <p>Tell us how you save money during to holidays and we'll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!</p> <h2>Win 1 of 3 $20 Amazon Gift Cards</h2> <p>We're doing three giveaways &mdash; here's how you can win:</p> <ul> <li>Follow us on Twitter</li> <li>Follow our Executive Editor Janet Alvarez on Twitter</li> <li>Tweet about our giveaway for an entry.</li> <li>Visit our Facebook page for an entry.</li> </ul> <p>Use our Rafflecopter widget for your chance to win one of three Amazon Gift Cards:</p> <p><a class="rcptr" href="http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/79857dfa332/" rel="nofollow" data-raflid="79857dfa332" data-theme="classic" data-template="" id="rcwidget_2h5w8tz4">a Rafflecopter giveaway</a> </p> <script src="https://widget-prime.rafflecopter.com/launch.js"></script></p> <h4>Giveaway Rules:</h4> <ul> <li>Contest ends Monday, December 4th at 11:59 p.m. Pacific. Winners will be announced after December 4th on the original post. Winners will also be contacted via email.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered, or associated with Facebook or Twitter.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>You must be 18 and U.S. resident to enter. Void where prohibited.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Good Luck!</strong></p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-blog-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Tell us how you save money during to holidays and we&#039;ll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card! </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-how-do-you-save-money-during-the-holidays">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/ask-the-readers-what-is-your-new-years-resolution">Ask the Readers: What Is Your New Year&#039;s Resolution?</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/9-gifts-that-wont-become-clutter">9 Gifts That Won&#039;t Become Clutter</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/10-ways-to-tidy-up-your-finances-before-the-holidays">10 Ways to Tidy Up Your Finances Before the Holidays</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/ask-the-readers-name-your-favorite-moment-of-2010">Ask the Readers: Name Your Favorite Moment of 2010</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/ask-the-readers-share-your-favorite-frugal-holiday-tradition">Ask the Readers: Share Your Favorite Frugal Holiday Tradition</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Giveaways Ask the Readers Holidays Tue, 28 Nov 2017 09:30:06 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 2058473 at http://www.wisebread.com Deferred Interest Credit Cards: Don't Fall For This Trick Over The Holidays http://www.wisebread.com/deferred-interest-credit-cards-dont-fall-for-this-trick-over-the-holidays <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/deferred-interest-credit-cards-dont-fall-for-this-trick-over-the-holidays" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/shopping_with_card.jpg" alt="Shopping With Card" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p><em>&quot;Would you like to apply for a store credit card today? You can get [insert number here] months free financing.&quot;</em></p> <p>We've all heard it before when checking out at a retail store. Chances are, you'll be hearing it a lot more over the holidays as you ramp up your holiday shopping.</p> <p>It can be tempting &mdash; you can make a large purchase today, and pay it off over time interest-free. Some companies will even throw in a gift card or a discount if you apply for their credit card. But before you say &quot;yes&quot; to the cashier, there's one hidden trick that these companies often use. If you're not aware of it, your &quot;free financing&quot; might end up backfiring in a big way. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/should-you-sign-up-for-that-store-credit-card?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Should You Sign Up for That Store Credit Card?</a>)</p> <h2>What is a &quot;deferred interest&quot; credit card?</h2> <p>There are two types of credit cards that offer free financing: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-with-0-apr-for-purchases?ref=internal" target="_blank">0% Intro APR cards</a>, and deferred interest cards.</p> <p>You see ads for 0% APR cards all the time &mdash; you get 0% APR for a limited time. After that, the standard interest rate goes into effect. When stores offer a &quot;deferred interest credit card&quot; you might reasonably assume they work the same way. But they are very different.</p> <p>With a deferred interest card, you must pay off the charge <em>in full </em>before the promotional free financing period is over. If you don't, you'll have to pay the <em>full amount of interest charges</em>, as if that interest rate was in effect the whole time. All that &quot;deferred&quot; interest comes rolling back the moment the promotional period is over, not just on the balance you have left, but on the entire purchase amount.</p> <p>And it'll be a heck of a bill too: the interest rates on these types of credit cards are often sky-high, running upward of 25% APR. As a comparison, the current average interest rate for all credit cards combined is 13.08% APR, according to the Federal Reserve.</p> <p>Let's look at an example of how much a deferred interest credit card might cost you. A store credit card offers 12 months deferred interest financing, with a standard 27.99% APR. If you make a $1,500 purchase and only make the minimum payments during those 12 months (about $45), you'll owe a walloping $321.63 in interest at the end of it &mdash; and still owe over $950 on your purchase.</p> <h2>How do you spot a deferred interest credit card?</h2> <p>Your first clue is <em>who</em> is offering the card. Most deferred interest credit cards are offered by retail stores. If a store employee is trying to get you to sign up for the card, ask them: &quot;what happens if I don't have the purchase paid off by the end of the financing period?&quot;</p> <p>But the <em>best</em> way to find out if the card you're interested in really is a deferred interest card or not is to simply look at the Terms and Conditions disclosure. Here's a snippet from a store credit card's disclosure to give you an idea of what the language will look like:</p> <p><em>&quot;If the balance is not paid in full by the end of the promotional period, interest charges will be imposed from the purchase date at the purchase rate on your account which is 26.24%.&quot;</em></p> <p>See how the charges are imposed &quot;from the purchase date?&quot; Other words to look for are &quot;deferred&quot; or &quot;financing&quot; or &quot;no interest if paid off in X months&quot; which is different from just 0% APR during the promotional time. A credit card that offers 0% APR for 12 months mean that there are no interest charges on your balance for 12 months, then at the end of the 12 months, the standard APR will start, and will only be applied to the <em>current</em> <em>balance</em>, not the entire purchase. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/same-as-cash-store-offers-vs-0-intro-apr-credit-cards-which-is-right-for-you?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Same-As-Cash Store Offers vs. 0% Intro APR Credit Cards &mdash; Which Is Right for You?</a>)</p> <h2>Come up with a game plan to tackle your debt</h2> <p>Despite all of this, deferred interest cards aren't necessarily something you always need to avoid. In fact, they can really help you out &mdash; <em>as long as you have a game plan to deal with them</em>.</p> <p>Setting up a plan is simple. All you have to do is take the amount of your purchase and divide it by however many months you have to pay off the charge. If you want to play it on the safe side, you can even subtract a month or two to give yourself some space if something comes up. That way, you'll have it paid off with plenty of time to spare.</p> <p>Here's an example. Say your child's old computer died, and you want to buy them a new $1,100 computer for Christmas. Luckily, your local electronic store chain offers a 12-month deferred interest credit card, which you use to purchase your new computer.</p> <p>If you want to have it paid off early, divide the purchase price ($1,100) by 11 months, to give you a monthly payment of $100. You can further boost your chances of having it paid off by setting up that payment on autopay, so then you don't even have to worry at all about making payments. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/store-credit-cards-that-dont-suck?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The Best Store Credit Cards</a>)</p> <h2>When you should choose a store credit card over a 0% APR card</h2> <p>A 0% APR credit card will give you the safety net in case you don't actually pay off the entire balance within the promotional time frame. Even if you leave a $10 balance on a store credit card, you'll get charged <em>all the interest from the purchase date</em>. It's pretty brutal.</p> <p>It can also be of use to you even after the promotional period. Perhaps it's a very good <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">travel rewards credit card</a> that can fund your next vacation.</p> <p>But there are times you might end up choosing the store credit card instead.</p> <h3>You have bad credit</h3> <p>I won't remind you that if you're in this position, you should be considering ways to build back your credit which doesn't include adding more debt. But assuming you've already thought this through, getting approved for a 0% APR card might not be in your cards. So if you really need this buffer to pay off the purchase, and you are committed to the payoff goal, then go ahead and sign up for the card. Store cards generally have a lower threshold for approving customers, because their regular APR is so high, and their credit limits usually low.</p> <h3>You will benefit from the rewards</h3> <p>Stores can be generous to their credit card holders, offering big rewards and discounts that will save you loads of money. If you're a frequent shopper there, and the store card can offer you much better deals and rewards than you'd get from a typical <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-cash-back-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">cash back card</a>, for example, then it can be worth it to be a loyal card holder. Just don't ever leave a balance because the APR will always destroy any savings or rewards the card would have offered.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fdeferred-interest-credit-cards-dont-fall-for-this-trick-over-the-holidays&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FDeferred%2520Interest%2520Credit%2520Cards_%2520Dont%2520Fall%2520For%2520This%2520Trick%2520Over%2520The%2520Holidays.jpg&amp;description=Deferred%20Interest%20Credit%20Cards%3A%20Dont%20Fall%20For%20This%20Trick%20Over%20The%20Holidays"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/Deferred%20Interest%20Credit%20Cards_%20Dont%20Fall%20For%20This%20Trick%20Over%20The%20Holidays.jpg" alt="Deferred Interest Credit Cards: Don't Fall For This Trick Over The Holidays" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/lindsay-vansomeren">Lindsay VanSomeren</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/deferred-interest-credit-cards-dont-fall-for-this-trick-over-the-holidays">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/make-these-6-credit-card-moves-now-to-prepare-for-holiday-shopping">Make These 6 Credit Card Moves Now to Prepare for Holiday Shopping</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/when-should-you-pay-a-credit-card-convenience-fee">When Should You Pay a Credit Card Convenience Fee?</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/read-this-to-maximize-your-rewards-and-cash-back-this-holiday-season">Read This to Maximize Your Rewards and Cash Back This Holiday Season</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/step-by-step-guide-to-doing-a-balance-transfer-on-credit-cards">Step-by-Step Guide to Doing a Balance Transfer on Credit Cards</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-pitfalls-when-chasing-travel-rewards">6 Pitfalls When Chasing Travel Rewards</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Credit Cards credit card tips credit cards deferred interest credit cards holiday shopping Holidays Spending Money Wed, 22 Nov 2017 09:30:10 +0000 Lindsay VanSomeren 2058216 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Last-Minute Money Tips for the Holidays http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-last-minute-money-tips-for-the-holidays <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-last-minute-money-tips-for-the-holidays" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_christmas_bills_187493988.jpg" alt="Last-minute money tips for the holidays" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found articles on last-minute money tips for surviving the holidays, reasons why single people need life insurance too, and dollar-store DIY projects to try.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="https://blog.mint.com/financial-literacy/last-minute-money-tips-to-help-you-survive-the-holidays/">Last-Minute Money Tips to Help You Survive the Holidays</a> &mdash; Cancel a few subscriptions to give yourself a little breathing room for gifts and events. [MintLife Blog]</p> <p><a href="https://everythingfinanceblog.com/22455/single-people-need-life-insurance.html">7 Reasons Single People Need Life Insurance Too</a> &mdash; Even if you don't have dependents now, you may in the future &mdash; and it only makes sense to start preparing for that future by getting life insurance while it costs less due to your youth. [Everything Finance]</p> <p><a href="https://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Dollar-Store-Item-DIY-Projects-22623041">36 Dollar-Store DIY Projects to Try Out</a> &mdash; Fancy up your party with a tiered tray made from dollar store candle sticks and plastic plates. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="https://blog.cheapism.com/thanksgiving-leftovers-recipes/">15 Ways to Spice Up Thanksgiving Leftovers</a> &mdash; From soup to samosas, these recipes will give new life to your Thanksgiving leftovers. [Cheapism]</p> <p><a href="http://www.livingwellspendingless.com/2017/11/17/patience-is-a-virtue/">How to Teach Your Kids Patience</a> &mdash; Like any skill, patience take practice. Give your kids little opportunities for delayed gratification. [Living Well Spending Less]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.enwealthen.com/8-simple-ways-to-save-money-right-now/">8 Simple Ways To Save Money Right Now</a> &mdash; Get a home energy audit to see where you're wasting energy and what you can do to fix it. [Enwealthen]</p> <p><a href="https://fortunateinvestor.com/12-money-mistakes-avoid/">12 Money Mistakes to Avoid</a> &mdash; Being in the dark about how money is being spent at home is a recipe for disaster. [The Fortunate Investor]</p> <p><a href="https://www.dumblittleman.com/honoring-the-dead/">7 Ways To Honor Your Loved Ones&rsquo; Memory</a> &mdash; Pay tribute to the memory of your loved ones with these creative and meaningful ideas. [Dumb Little Man]</p> <p><a href="https://www.stevenaitchison.co.uk/give-diet-follow-tips-shred-fats-faster/">Give Up on Diet and Follow these Tips to Shred Fats Faster</a> &mdash; Avoid eating after sunset to give your body enough time to digest the food before you go to bed. [Change Your Thoughts]</p> <p><a href="https://www.csmonitor.com/World/Europe/2017/1113/Could-other-nations-follow-France-s-example-and-export-their-culture-as-a-brand">Could other nations follow France's example and export their culture as a brand?</a>&nbsp; &mdash; The French are exerting cultural influence through brand diplomacy &mdash; and getting paid a pretty penny for it. [The Christian Science Monitor]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amy-lu">Amy Lu</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-last-minute-money-tips-for-the-holidays">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/9-gifts-that-wont-become-clutter">9 Gifts That Won&#039;t Become Clutter</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-ways-to-tidy-up-your-finances-before-the-holidays">10 Ways to Tidy Up Your Finances Before the Holidays</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/the-ultimate-guide-to-holiday-tipping">The Ultimate Guide to Holiday Tipping</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/regifting-a-simple-how-to-guide">Regifting: A Simple How-To Guide</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-overpriced-holiday-gifts-you-should-skip">7 Overpriced Holiday Gifts You Should Skip</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living best money tips Holidays Mon, 20 Nov 2017 09:30:06 +0000 Amy Lu 2056354 at http://www.wisebread.com 3 Easy Ways to Improve Your Credit Score During the Holidays http://www.wisebread.com/3-easy-ways-to-improve-your-credit-score-during-the-holidays <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/3-easy-ways-to-improve-your-credit-score-during-the-holidays" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/beautiful_woman_shopping_online_for_christmas.jpg" alt="Beautiful woman shopping online for Christmas" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Whether you're stuffing yourself with delicious turkey, putting up decorations, or just enjoying a well-deserved break, you're probably not thinking about your credit score much during the holidays. But even though it may not be fun, monitoring your credit score this time of year can help bring you closer to your financial New Year's resolutions or goals. Here are a few ways to give your credit score a much-needed boost during this holiday season.</p> <h2>Plan to make more purchases with cash</h2> <p>It's a myth that most people do their holiday shopping with credit cards. In 2016, Experian's Holiday Spending Survey found that 55 percent of respondents selected cash as their planned method of payment for holiday gifts. Spending with cash instead of credit cards is a smart move to prevent the potential debt cycle that the holidays can bring. Paying with cash instead of plastic will help keep your <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-one-ratio-is-the-key-to-a-good-credit-score?ref=internal" target="_blank">credit utilization ratio</a> low. This ratio compares total credit available to you with the amount of credit you have used. A low ratio means you do not use very much of your credit. Remember that your credit utilization ratio accounts for 30 percent of your credit score.</p> <h2>Apply for a credit card with a low APR</h2> <p>While cash is king, 47 percent of respondents were still planning to use credit cards for their holiday shopping last year. If you're planning on pulling out plastic for this holiday shopping season, you may want to pay a visit to your local credit union before you start swiping.</p> <p>According to data from the National Credit Union Administration, the average interest rate of a regular credit card from a credit union was 11.61 percent as of September 2017. At the same time, cards from banks came with an average rate of 12.96 percent. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-low-interest-rate-credit-cards?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Best Low Interest Rate Credit Cards</a>)</p> <p>Let's assume that you were to spend $1,000 with a credit card and pay it all back in three months. With a 12.96 percent APR, you would have to make three monthly payments of $341. That's $23 in interest payments for that $1000. Another way to avoid interest charges on your holiday spending is to get a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-with-0-apr-for-purchases?ref=internal" target="_blank">card that offers 0% APR on purchases</a> for a promotional period.</p> <p>By paying less interest, you're more likely to make payments on time (which accounts for 35 percent of your credit score) and owe less to credit card lenders overall (which accounts for 30 percent of your credit score).</p> <p>However, the most important thing is you make a commit to pay off your holiday purchases, so that you're not still paying for it when the holidays roll around again.</p> <h2>Consolidate high-interest credit cards</h2> <p>Trying to reach the recommended 30 percent credit utilization ratio can feel like an overwhelming task when the majority of your monthly payment goes to cover high interest. One way to overcome this is to explore your options of consolidating balances of other cards with a personal line of credit or other type of financing.</p> <p>Credit unions also beat national banks with lower rates for personal lines of credit. As of September 2017, a 36-month unsecured fixed rate loan came with an average interest rate of 9.20 percent at credit unions and 10.04 percent at banks. And during the holiday season, credit unions tend to offer even lower rates.</p> <p>You could also do a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/when-to-do-a-balance-transfer-to-pay-off-credit-card-debt?ref=internal" target="_blank">balance transfer to consolidate high-interest credit card debt</a>. To make this work, you'd need to open a new credit card offering a promotional introductory rate on balance transfers. You may have to pay a fee to transfer your balance (typically around 3 percent), and you'll want to repay your debt before the promotional APR window closes (typically between six and 21 months) and the rate increases. However, having a year or so to tackle credit card debt at a much lower interest rate can save you a great deal of money if you're diligent. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-0-balance-transfer-credit-cards?ref=seealso?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The Best 0% Balance Transfer Credit Cards</a>)</p> <p>Being able to consolidate your balances allows you slay your debt monsters faster, which will certainly make your holidays a little brighter &mdash; and improve your credit score. Remember that the longer you carry a balance on high-interest credit cards and loans, the more interest you'll rack up on your debt, and the longer that your credit score will remain low. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-tricks-to-consolidating-your-debt-and-saving-money?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Tricks to Consolidating Your Debt and Saving Money</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F3-easy-ways-to-improve-your-credit-score-during-the-holidays&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F3%2520Easy%2520Ways%2520to%2520Improve%2520Your%2520Credit%2520Score%2520During%2520the%2520Holidays.jpg&amp;description=5%20Affordable%20Vacations%20to%20Please%20Every%20Age%20Group"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/3%20Easy%20Ways%20to%20Improve%20Your%20Credit%20Score%20During%20the%20Holidays.jpg" alt="3 Easy Ways to Improve Your Credit Score During the Holidays" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/damian-davila">Damian Davila</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-easy-ways-to-improve-your-credit-score-during-the-holidays">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/10-things-you-need-to-know-before-taking-out-a-personal-loan">10 Things You Need to Know Before Taking Out a Personal Loan</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-millennials-guide-to-avoiding-credit-card-debt">The Millennials Guide to Avoiding Credit Card Debt</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/10-money-goals-you-should-set-for-the-holidays">10 Money Goals You Should Set for the Holidays</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/all-the-ways-minimum-payments-are-evil">All the Ways Minimum Payments Are Evil</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-build-an-emergency-fund-by-the-end-of-summer">How to Build an Emergency Fund By the End of Summer</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance APR balance transfers cash consolidating debt credit score credit unions Holidays interest rates personal line of credit repayment shopping Fri, 17 Nov 2017 10:00:06 +0000 Damian Davila 2055198 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Reasons to Skip the Big Holiday Dinner This Year http://www.wisebread.com/8-reasons-to-skip-the-big-holiday-dinner-this-year <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-reasons-to-skip-the-big-holiday-dinner-this-year" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/unhappy_boy_stands_before_chistmas_tree.jpg" alt="Unhappy boy stands before chistmas tree" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's something you feel like you just can't avoid, and so you do it every year. The big holiday dinner. The one that, supposedly, everyone looks forward to. But do they really? Do you? For some, it can be an awful lot of stress. For others, the thought of those two particular family members in the same house, at the same time, is unbearable. Here's a reminder of why the holidays aren't always festive, and why you might consider opting out. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-actually-relax-over-the-holidays?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Ways to Relax Over the Holidays</a>)</p> <h2>1. Do you really need two big dinners in two months?</h2> <p>Let's start with the most obvious reason to skip the big holiday this year &hellip; there's more than one of them.</p> <p>Most Americans celebrate Thanksgiving, followed a month later by either Christmas or Hanukkah. Each one of those holidays is accompanied by a gathering of family and friends around some kind of feast. Why not skip one of them and put all the effort into the most important holiday for your family. When it comes to Christmas, people are so busy opening gifts and playing with toys that the additional feast on top can be a real strain. And with plenty of eateries open throughout the holiday season, you can either pop out for a meal, order in, or make something quick and easy. After all, it's not really about the food, it's the company. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-alternative-ways-to-do-thanksgiving?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Alternative Ways to Do Thanksgiving</a>)</p> <h2>2. The clean up afterward is a pain</h2> <p>Large metal trays filled with grease. Pans caked in potatoes and gravy. A mountain of dirty plates, cups, and utensils. You're going to be at the sink for hours doing all the rinsing, scraping, and preparation for the dishwasher. And even then, the chances of getting it all in one dishwasher load are slim. That means you'll be back for a second round, after putting away the dishes from the first round. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-tricks-to-keeping-your-kitchen-clean-while-you-cook?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Tricks to Keeping Your Kitchen Clean While You Cook</a>)</p> <h2>3. The preparation takes days</h2> <p>Right now, if you're celebrating Thanksgiving this year, you're already making plans for the big dinner. You have ideas of what you're going to make, and what the other guests will be bringing. There will be countless trips to the grocery store. You'll have to get that turkey brined if you don't want it to be as dry as a mouthful of sawdust. And let's not forget about the scheduling to make sure everyone gets their dishes into the oven at the right time, and everything gets onto the table when it's hot. There is a monumental amount of prep work involved in a dinner of this magnitude, and it can get even worse with issues like gluten sensitivities and other food allergies. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/you-can-throw-a-fun-and-affordable-holiday-party-heres-how?ref=seealso" target="_blank">You Can Throw a Fun and Affordable Holiday Party &mdash; Here's How</a>)</p> <p>Who needs that kind of headache?</p> <h2>4. Who needs a political debate?</h2> <p>After a certain Donald J. Trump won a divisive election against Hillary Clinton, America has become fanatical about taking sides. Yes, politics is important to discuss to a degree, but should it break up families and cause screaming matches? The chances are, the more people you have in the room, the more heated the conversation will be. Fights are inevitable, even if you have a &quot;no politics&quot; rule at the table. So, skip the big dinner, and make it a more casual affair. Perhaps a buffet people can pick at during the day will make it easier to avoid certain topics &mdash; and certain grumpy uncles. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-conversation-tricks-thatll-get-you-out-of-a-political-discussion?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Conversation Tricks That'll Get You Out of a Political Discussion</a>)</p> <h2>5. So many calories!</h2> <p>We all joke about it to some extent. &quot;Oh man&hellip;I am going to eat so much on Thanksgiving that I will literally turn into a giant pumpkin.&quot; However, there is a serious side to this. According to the Calorie Control Council, the typical holiday dinner alone clocks in at a whopping 3,000 calories! That's not including all the snacks, drinks, cakes, sweets, and other goodies people consume throughout the day. And let's not forget, those Thanksgiving dinner recipes rarely include the healthy options. It's all butter, heavy cream, bacon, fat, and other artery-clogging foods. The Calorie Control Council states that on the day, the average person will eat enough fat to equal three whole sticks of butter. Holy heart attack, Batman. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-vegetarian-thanksgiving-dishes-that-hold-their-own-with-turkey?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Vegetarian Thanksgiving Dishes That Hold Their Own With Turkey</a>)</p> <h2>6. There's no room to store anything</h2> <p>When you start prepping for the big day, you realize that space is a premium that's consumed by a holiday dinner. The turkey alone can take up an enormous part of the fridge. Then there are all the extra fruits and vegetables, the cakes and pies, and enough snacks and candies to make the pantry door swell. You come home one day to find boxes of cookies overflowing onto the counters and the dining room table. You have to eat a bunch of food quickly to make space for more food that will be eaten on the big day. And get ready for that space to continue to be tight after the event, with all the leftovers and extra treats that people were too full to even touch.</p> <h2>7. Not everyone loves big holiday events</h2> <p>Like anything else in life, people have different ideas on what makes for a fun, entertaining event. For some people, these dinners are the opposite of happy. They may simply hate large gatherings. Or, they may be avoiding certain people for any number of reasons, only to be forced to sit around the same table with them for an evening. They may have other reasons, like the cost to attend, or the fact that they would much prefer to do something more intimate with just their immediate family. Why not send out a survey, that can be answered anonymously, asking the people you were planning to invite if that actually want to do it this year. You may be surprised at the results. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-friendsgiving-hacks-thatll-make-everyone-feel-at-home?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Friendsgiving Hacks That'll Make Everyone Feel at Home</a>)</p> <h2>8. Getting there can be expensive</h2> <p>The average cost of a Thanksgiving dinner that feeds 10 people is around $50, according the American Farm Bureau Federation. That's a bargain right?! Well, that's the cost of dinner, and yes, it's cheap at $5 a head. However, the biggest expense for the holiday dinner for many people is the travel. Not every family is lucky enough to live 20 minutes from their relatives. Some have to drive across the country, staying in hotels and paying for many tanks of gas. Others fly, which as we all know includes not just the price of the ticket, but the baggage, seat selection, and check-in. If there is not enough room at the house, these people also have to shell out for hotel rooms, and perhaps a rental car. It's perfectly OK to let your family and friends know that you're watching your money this year, and cannot come. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-save-money-on-holiday-travel?ref=seealso" target="_blank">11 Ways to Save on Holiday Travel</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F8-reasons-to-skip-the-big-holiday-dinner-this-year&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F8%2520Reasons%2520to%2520Skip%2520the%2520Big%2520Holiday%2520Dinner%2520This%2520Year.jpg&amp;description=8%20Reasons%20to%20Skip%20the%20Big%20Holiday%20Dinner%20This%20Year"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/8%20Reasons%20to%20Skip%20the%20Big%20Holiday%20Dinner%20This%20Year.jpg" alt="8 Reasons to Skip the Big Holiday Dinner This Year" width="250" height="374" /></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-reasons-to-skip-the-big-holiday-dinner-this-year">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/15-cheap-and-delicious-punch-recipes-for-holiday-parties">15 Cheap and Delicious Punch Recipes for Holiday Parties</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-seasonal-side-hustles-thatll-cover-your-holiday-spending">8 Seasonal Side Hustles That&#039;ll Cover Your Holiday Spending</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-ways-to-actually-relax-over-the-holidays">8 Ways to Actually Relax Over the Holidays</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-use-the-holidays-to-teach-kids-about-money">How to Use the Holidays to Teach Kids About 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/6-vegetarian-thanksgiving-dishes-that-hold-their-own-with-turkey">6 Vegetarian Thanksgiving Dishes That Hold Their Own With Turkey</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink Christmas etiquette family holiday meals Holidays manners Thanksgiving Thu, 16 Nov 2017 09:00:06 +0000 Paul Michael 2054953 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Money Goals You Should Set for the Holidays http://www.wisebread.com/10-money-goals-you-should-set-for-the-holidays <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-money-goals-you-should-set-for-the-holidays" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/gift_of_money_against a_defocused_background_and_christmas_lights.jpg" alt="Gift of Money against a Defocused Background and Christmas Lights" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The holidays are here today, gone tomorrow &mdash; and it's easy to get caught up in a tinseled tornado of financial distress if you're not careful. Avoid that fate this season with these self-imposed goals on how to better manage your holiday budget. It'll help you start the New Year financially fresh and fancy-free.</p> <h2>1. Stop spending money on gifts people don't need</h2> <p>When planning out your holiday gift list, think long and hard about what those people on your list may want or need. Don't be afraid to ask them, either. I always ask friends and family if they have something specific in mind &mdash; and I staunchly believe in getting what they'll love and use, so long as it fits into my budget.</p> <p>Sometimes they provide solid ideas, and other times I get the ol' &quot;I don't need anything&quot; routine, even though they know good and well I'm going to buy them something anyway. (Way to help, Dad.) If you're unsure about a gift, or you feel like you're buying something just to buy it, think again. There's no reason to spend your money on something that will go unused, or even worse, be regifted.</p> <p>When in doubt, a gift card to a favorite store generally works well &mdash; and you should take advantage of the ubiquitous &quot;Spend $X in gift cards and get a $X gift card for free&quot; promotions that many retailers and restaurants offer during the holidays. Stretch that cash every way you can. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-on-christmas-shopping-with-this-clever-gift-card-strategy?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Save on Christmas Shopping With This Clever Gift Card Strategy</a>)</p> <h2>2. Stop spending money on people who don't need gifts</h2> <p>Does <em>everyone</em> you know need a gift? Will you even see the recipients this holiday season? Are you disproportionately spending money on the people you do buy for? If money is tight and you're stuck in a pattern of buying gifts because you feel obligated, stand up for yourself and put a stop to it.</p> <p>Several years ago, my brother, cousin, and a few of my best friends started churning out children left and right. I had to make the tough decision to cut the adults off my list. I couldn't afford to buy for everyone, so I chose the kids instead. I've never looked back on that decision with any regrets. I get to be the cool uncle who always gives the best presents &mdash; all while being able to save money despite that distinction.</p> <h2>3. Select, make, and &quot;buy&quot; gifts from stuff you already have</h2> <p>There's only one rule to regifting, in my opinion: Make sure the regift doesn't end up anywhere near the person who gave it to you in the first place. Bad form. Otherwise, please, regift items that were given to you that you haven't used (so long as they're still unopened and/or haven't expired). The same goes for unused items that you bought for yourself throughout the year (like clothing with the tags still on). Gift them to someone you think will appreciate them to help keep more money in your pocket.</p> <p>I'm also a big fan of making gifts by hand. For instance, I'm hosting a small dinner party in December, and I'm making my guests a little take-home gift consisting of a festive homemade body scrub, a hand-poured holiday candle, and a bottle of wine I've recently made from a kit.</p> <p>Simple, inexpensive, thoughtful &mdash; that's the name of the game. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-on-christmas-shopping-with-this-clever-gift-card-strategy?ref=seealso" target="_blank">25 Gifts You Can Make Today</a>)</p> <h2>4. Concentrate on eliminating existing debt before racking up more</h2> <p>One of your top money goals this time of year should be focusing on debt you already have instead of racking up more buying gifts. That's not always easy to do during the holidays, but the due diligence will pay off.</p> <p>If you have existing credit card debt, try your best not to make only the minimum monthly payments. Instead, begin paying a bit extra toward the principal starting with the card with the highest interest rate. This repayment strategy (otherwise known as the debt avalanche) will save you the most money overall on interest payments. High interest rates are what's keeping you in debt, and the faster you reduce or pay these cards off, the better. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/fastest-way-to-pay-off-10000-in-credit-card-debt?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The Fastest Way to Pay Off $10,000 in Credit Card Debt</a>)</p> <h2>5. Make a list of gift recipients and assign a budget per person</h2> <p>I like to plan out my gift buying to the tee, because I know how bad I can be with impulse purchases around the holidays. You know what it's like: You plan to get your mom a nice perfume set, but then you see this great piece of jewelry on sale &mdash; and your entire budget unravels before your eyes.</p> <p>To combat this habit, I make an itemized list of what I'd like to buy for each person and assign a top-line budget based on the advertised retail price. And then I get to work. Before I make the final purchases, I scour my apps for cash-back deals, search the internet for promo codes, cash in my retailer rewards, and try to plan my in-store shopping around major sales. It helps that I get just about every circular and marketing email known to man &mdash; so I'm always abreast of what deals are going down &mdash; but you'll find equal savings with your own resourcefulness and research.</p> <p>The point of all this extra legwork is to drastically come in below the gifts' retail prices so you cannot only stay under budget but, in fact, walk away from the holidays a solid winner. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/avoid-these-5-common-holiday-budget-pitfalls?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Avoid These 5 Common Holiday Budget Pitfalls</a>)</p> <h2>6. Pay for gifts strictly from your holiday-spending envelope</h2> <p>Once you've made your itemized list of gifts and determined the overall budget, take out the cash from the bank, stick it in an envelope, and use only that money to buy gifts. There is no other alternative; this is all the money you have to spend, and you need to stick to this plan. If what you want to buy is online, consult your budget to make sure you're on track, then use your debit card. Then, immediately replace the deduction by making a deposit into your checking account so everything balances out. Yeah, it's old school &mdash; but it works.</p> <h2>7. Put any cash gifts you receive into savings or toward bills</h2> <p>Plan to put any holiday cash you receive from family members straight into your savings account or toward bills. This savings tactic isn't any fun &mdash; I understand &mdash; but you'll likely receive plenty of gift cards that you can spend instead that will help quell your urge to blow everything before the holidays even come to a close.</p> <h2>8. Shop with a buddy to keep each other away from impulse buys</h2> <p>I like shopping alone for several reasons. For starters, I don't have to wait on my companions and they don't have to wait on me, which, when shopping together, can really zap the relaxation out of my leisurely pace. Furthermore, I don't like people's opinions of my purchases or their comments about whether I really need this or that. It's my money, and I'll buy what I want.</p> <p>Except around holiday time.</p> <p>This is the time of year I like to employ the buddy system when shopping for the sole purpose of keeping each other focused on our lists and away from impulse buys. Because if my bestie can't smack my hand in public and tell me no, who can? That's what friends are for.</p> <h2>9. Lay the groundwork for 2018 and the future of your finances</h2> <p>There are a million things happening during the holidays, but that doesn't mean you can't look ahead and prepare yourself financially for the New Year. In fact, you owe it to yourself.</p> <p>Kevin Driscoll, VP of Advisory Services for Navy Federal Financial Group, agrees.</p> <p>&quot;If you're not already doing so, begin contributing to your 401(k),&quot; he says. &quot;Make 2018 the year of financial freedom in retirement by saving now. Check out the retirement plan your employer offers, and if they offer a match, be sure to take advantage of this.&quot;</p> <p>Also worth considering is investing in an online investment platform.</p> <p>&quot;You'll find that there are many sites that allow you to make minimal contributions to buy a portion of a stock,&quot; Driscoll continues. &quot;This is a great way to get your feet wet with investing and hopefully make some extra money, too. Additionally, these platforms are generally low maintenance, and don't require any prior knowledge of the market or investing.&quot;</p> <h2>10. Find ways to spend and save even smarter</h2> <p>Every year, one of your top resolutions should be to stay on top of your finances and to improve your own money management. How do you do that? That's really up to you, but it will require due diligence on your part. It could be as easy as subscribing to personal finance blogs so you'll receive the latest financial self-help articles in your inbox, or maybe you can enroll in a local course that will help you better understand your money and your relationship with it. Both of these tactics combined would be great, too.</p> <p>The point is, you should continue to educate yourself about how to spend and save smarter so you can achieve your goals and live a life free from the burden of debt. Easier said than accomplished, but people just like you do it on a regular basis. Invest in yourself and it will pay off eventually. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-financial-resolutions-you-can-conquer-before-new-years?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Financial Resolutions You Can Conquer Before New Year's</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F10-money-goals-you-should-set-for-the-holidays&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F10%2520Money%2520Goals%2520You%2520Should%2520Set%2520for%2520the%2520Holidays.jpg&amp;description=10%20Money%20Goals%20You%20Should%20Set%20for%20the%20Holidays"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/10%20Money%20Goals%20You%20Should%20Set%20for%20the%20Holidays.jpg" alt="10 Money Goals You Should Set for the Holidays" width="250" height="374" /></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/10-money-goals-you-should-set-for-the-holidays">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/8-secrets-to-a-debt-free-holiday-season">8 Secrets to a Debt-Free Holiday Season</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-fastest-ways-to-recover-from-holiday-overspending">7 Fastest Ways to Recover From Holiday Overspending</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-excuses-we-need-to-stop-making-about-overspending">5 Excuses We Need to Stop Making About Overspending</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/13-financial-gifts-to-give-yourself-this-holiday-season">13 Financial Gifts to Give Yourself This Holiday Season</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-ways-to-tidy-up-your-finances-before-the-holidays">10 Ways to Tidy Up Your Finances Before the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance budgets cash Christmas deals debt gifts Holidays sales saving money shopping Spending Money Wed, 15 Nov 2017 09:00:09 +0000 Mikey Rox 2053944 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Excuses We Need to Stop Making About Overspending http://www.wisebread.com/5-excuses-we-need-to-stop-making-about-overspending <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-excuses-we-need-to-stop-making-about-overspending" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/out_of_cash_lost money_being_broke_concept.jpg" alt="Out of cash, lost money, being broke concept" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Being able to rationalize something that we know we shouldn't do is one of the things that humans are best at. Specifically, we do a fantastic job of coming up with reasons to explain away or excuse our overspending. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-types-of-overspenders-which-one-are-you?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Types of Overspenders &mdash; Which One Are You?</a>)</p> <p>But no matter how clever you are in coming up with a great reason for maxing out your credit card, emptying your savings account, or otherwise living large on money you don't have, your overspending will catch up with you. That's why it's time to stop relying on these excuses for spending more than you can afford. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-biggest-lies-we-tell-ourselves-about-money?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 10 Biggest Lies We Tell Ourselves About Money</a>)</p> <h2>1. &quot;I deserve it&quot;</h2> <p>After a long day at the office, you decide to swing by your favorite store, telling yourself you deserve a retail pick-me-up after all your hard work &mdash; even though you can't afford it. Or after finishing a major project, you go on a lavish vacation, courtesy of your credit card, because you deserve some time to unwind. Or when your old clunker finally gives out on you, you decide to lease a much more expensive car that will turn heads as you zoom past, because you deserve to have a ride that matches how fabulous you are.</p> <p>Buying something you can't afford may provide a temporary thrill that feels like a reward in the moment. But the debt associated with your splurge will soon begin to feel like a burden. Where's the reward in that?</p> <h3>End the excuse</h3> <p>If you think that you deserve things that you can't afford to buy, you've got it all backward. What you deserve is feeling less stress and more happiness. There are plenty of ways to reward yourself for hard work that don't involve spending money. Take time out from your routine to go for a walk with a friend, indulge in a favorite TV show, or simply count your blessings.</p> <p>Anytime you are struggling with the sense that you deserve something you don't have, take a moment to write a list of things you are grateful that you <em>do </em>have. This can help put the &quot;I deserve it&quot; excuse in context.</p> <h2>2. &quot;It's on sale&quot;</h2> <p>The fact that an item is cheaper than it could be is often an excellent excuse for buying it &mdash; at least according to our irrational brains. Unfortunately, retailers are onto this quirk of our thinking, and so they play any number of shenanigans with prices to make products seem like a good deal. This includes everything from artificially jacking up prices in order to be able to offer the items &quot;on sale,&quot; to offering unbeatable discounts that are delivered directly to your email inbox. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-coupons-trick-you-into-spending-more-money?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Times Coupons Trick You Into Spending More Money</a>)</p> <h3>End the excuse</h3> <p>There are two ways to deal with this excuse. The first is to simply avoid sales situations that will tempt you to overspend because of the low prices. According to a 2013 study in the <em>Journal of Personality</em>, the key to saying no to temptations is to avoid them. Maia Szalavitz reported on this study for <em>TIME</em>, writing &quot;[the highly self-disciplined] tended to avoid creating situations in which their goals would conflict, and reported fewer instances of having to choose between short-term pleasure and long-term pain.&quot;</p> <p>For those individuals who still struggle to avoid sales, there is another way to let go of this excuse for overspending. Ask yourself the following three questions about any sale item that tempts you to spend:</p> <ol> <li> <p>Do I need this item?</p> </li> <li> <p>Would I buy this item if it weren't on sale?</p> </li> <li> <p>Can I afford to buy this item?</p> </li> </ol> <p>Unless the answer to all three questions is an unqualified yes, put the item down and walk away.</p> <h2>3. &quot;I was going to buy it anyway&quot;</h2> <p>What if you do answer that you need an item on sale, even though you simply don't have the money for it right now? At that point, you can often rationalize purchasing the item because you're going to have to buy it anyway, so you might as well do so now.</p> <p>Unfortunately, we are very good at lying to ourselves about whether or not we truly did plan to buy something at some point in the future. I can recall a pair of adorable rain boots that I bought on a bright sunny day because I convinced myself that I was going to need them at some point soon anyway. But I had no immediate need for the boots, and I could have gone quite some time without them. I told myself I <em>needed</em> the boots simply because I <em>wanted </em>to buy them. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-mental-biases-that-are-keeping-you-poor?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Mental Biases That Are Keeping You Poor</a>)</p> <h3>End the excuse</h3> <p>This excuse is a way of pretending that something you want is something you need. To help you navigate the difference between wants and needs, institute a waiting period for any unplanned purchases. When you see something that you are convinced you will buy anyway, commit to waiting at least 24 hours before you make the purchase. This will help you to separate the &quot;Wow, I want this now&quot; chaff from the &quot;OK, I'll need to come back for this later&quot; wheat.</p> <h2>4. &quot;I was good last month, so I can afford to splurge now&quot;</h2> <p>You've been depriving yourself by taking the bus instead of Ubering, choking down the office coffee instead of getting your morning latte, and even saying no to a pub crawl with friends &mdash; so now it's time to enjoy the fruits of your labors. You reason that you're allowed to go a little nuts, since you've already been so good for so long.</p> <p>The problem is that this mentality is similar to the excuses that dieters and exercisers use when they fall off the wagon. This excuse makes it clear that you see your underspending month (or month of dieting or jogging) as a kind of deprivation. If you think of underspending as good behavior that you can perform in order to get back to your usual program of overspending, you'll never be able to get ahead financially. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-resist-a-splurge?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Ways to Resist a Splurge</a>)</p> <h3>End the excuse</h3> <p>It's important for everyone to find a budget or spending plan that they can live with for the long term &mdash; one that does not feel like deprivation, but does allow you to live within your means. You can completely foil this excuse for overspending if you create a budget that still allows you to spend money on the things you care about most, while cutting the items that don't matter as much to you.</p> <p>When you have a financial life that you feel good about committing to long term, you will be able to end the thought process that encourages you to overspend after doing a great job of living within your means.</p> <h2>5. &quot;It's the holidays&quot;</h2> <p>It feels great to spend money to celebrate the holidays and give gifts to family and friends. And our brains can keep that great feeling going by convincing us that spending money on these things is a selfless act. After all, we just want to provide our loved ones with a memorable and happy holiday, which means we can put it all on a credit card and worry about the bill later. We're spreading holiday cheer, for heaven's sake!</p> <p>But there are real consequences to overspending for the holidays. Your loved ones would hate to see you feel overwhelmed by credit card debt or unable to save for the future because of the money you spent on showering them with gifts. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dealing-with-post-holiday-credit-card-debt?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Dealing With Post-Holiday Credit Card Debt</a>)</p> <h3>End the excuse</h3> <p>The best way to end this excuse is to recognize just what you are getting out of spending money on gifts, decorations, food, or other traditions. While you do want to create a lovely holiday memory for your family, you probably also love being known as the Christmas hostess with the extravagant brunch menu or the uncle who always has the best presents.</p> <p>Once you admit that you get something out of overspending on gifts or the holiday, you can start coming up with ways to get that same feeling without overspending. When you recognize that your spending isn't entirely selfless, it's much easier to come up with creative ways to evoke the magic of the season without giving your credit card a daily workout.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F5-excuses-we-need-to-stop-making-about-overspending&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F5%2520Excuses%2520We%2520Need%2520to%2520Stop%2520Making%2520About%2520Overspending.jpg&amp;description=5%20Excuses%20We%20Need%20to%20Stop%20Making%20About%20Overspending"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/5%20Excuses%20We%20Need%20to%20Stop%20Making%20About%20Overspending.jpg" alt="5 Excuses We Need to Stop Making About Overspending" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-excuses-we-need-to-stop-making-about-overspending">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/10-money-goals-you-should-set-for-the-holidays">10 Money Goals You Should Set for the Holidays</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-ways-being-single-is-better-for-your-bank-account">7 Ways Being Single is Better for Your Bank Account</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/save-on-christmas-shopping-with-this-clever-gift-card-strategy">Save on Christmas Shopping With This Clever Gift Card Strategy</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-fastest-ways-to-recover-from-holiday-overspending">7 Fastest Ways to Recover From Holiday Overspending</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/13-financial-gifts-to-give-yourself-this-holiday-season">13 Financial Gifts to Give Yourself This Holiday Season</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Shopping buying excuses gifts Holidays overspending sales saving money Tue, 14 Nov 2017 09:00:06 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 2051157 at http://www.wisebread.com