Tag Archives: survival

Tips For Saving Money

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Obviously living alone requires you to be a little more focused on your budget and on what you should & shouldn’t be spending money on. I speak with experience because I sort of got fucked over last year and decided I wanted to live the party-lifestyle only to realize that yes I can sure party hard, but it would’ve been best in my pj’s at home.

Yes I did it all, the weekend getaways, the fancy dinners, the premium alcohol, the bars, etc. but then I got sent back to reality fairly quickly when I realized that my credit card wasn’t going to pay itself off.

My parents often told me this and told me that about budgeting and credit cards, but did I listen? Probably not as well as I should have. Sometimes in life you have to learn from your mistakes. In the meantime, I’m not your mom or your dad but just a friend giving you some advice.

Tip #1 Setup A Budget

This is EXTREMELY important and honestly I should’ve been more strict with myself about this critical step that could’ve saved me from owing Mr. Visa a shit load of money. Don’t skip this step please. It’s very easy, create a budget using Excel, or an online template. It’s very important to take account everything your spending money on. Making a budget can even help you realize why the heck you are spending money on certain things and help you manage your money a lot better.

Tip #2 Eating Out 

I won’t go too much in depth here because I’ve actually written 5 Basic Tips On Surviving: Food Edition and it will encompass how you can save money by modifying a few eating habits and eating out is one of them. Trust me there’s nothing I love more than going to a nice restaurant to eat but then there’s drinks, a bottle of wine, etc. It’s important to pick and choose your nights out and definitely do not go out every weeknight. If you’re like me, young homeowner & living alone, try 1-2 times a month. Make those special nights count.

Tip #3 Shopping

So whether you’re a male or female, shopping can get out of hand for anybody. Car parts, home decor, clothing, etc. it all adds up VERY quickly. It’s important to include a section of your budget allotted to  shopping, i.e. $150 on clothing twice a year or $300 a year on home decor. As for car parts and other larger projects like vacations (I specifically mention car parts because I am currently building a vehicle) you need to create a separate savings account for this, that way you can add a small amount weekly or bi-weekly without it affecting your priorities.

Tip #4 Setup Auto Withdrawals

It can sometimes get overwhelming to have several bills to pay, that’s why auto withdrawal can help you make sure your payments are on time. Late payments can hurt your credit & cost you a lot of money in interest fees. But at least with auto withdrawal you’re safe and this also helps make sure you don’t spend the money on things that are not priority.

Tip #5 Don’t Spend Money You Don’t Have

This ad is quite funny, but it’s extremely realistic. #debt

I cannot stress this enough and yeah my mom told me so many times and I didn’t listen, so maybe you won’t listen to me either but just realize that credit card companies like to target young consumers such as me and you and what they did was they kept sending me letters allowing me to raise my limit. I was always good at paying my bill in full until it got out of hand and I regretted saying yes to that first letter, and then the second and then the third… It’s okay to have a credit card and use it for the benefits that some of them offer but PLEASE don’t see as free easy money, make sure you can pay it off.

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The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

3 Emotions you might feel when living alone.

I’m just naming a few emotions that I often feel because I have been living alone for almost 5 years now. I like to call them, the good, the bad & the ugly.

When you’re living alone, who knows how you will feel, this changes day-to-day depending on daily situations.

Emotion #1

Feeling Silly

Feeling silly is one of my regular emotions when I am at home. This basically consists of dancing in my underwear, screaming out loud, talking to myself, talking to the dogs, dancing with the dogs oh and the occasional opera concerto, polishing off a bottle of wine and watching funny videos while laughing hysterically by myself. (Were you out of breathe reading that? haha)

No I’m not crazy; I just like to keep myself (and the dogs apparently) entertained.

doggy dancing

It’s important to let lose, it’s no sign that you’re crazy, just get into your undies and dance the night away, put a show on for yourself and the dogs. Feeling silly is totally normal.

Great times dancing with Curtis Mayfield

Emotion #2

Feeling lonely

watching tv alone There’s no doubt that living alone can cause loneliness. Don’t worry, this is also normal. I say don’t panic, embrace it! When you’re young, your friends matter most to you. You spend countless hours with people, at their houses, or them at your house, etc. For me, I needed people around me all the time. Trust me when I say this, because I do speak with experience (not that I’m old…) but your time alone will be extremely appreciated once you learn to accept being alone. This theory also works for relationships FYI… if you cannot be alone, you cannot do a lot of things, but that’s my two cents. Make yourself a martini and just chill.martoiniLove the moment because one day when you have a family that peace and quiet will be gone, or you can get two pitbulls like I did, and that peace & quiet will also be gone. Don’t be afraid to be alone, once you have overcome this fear you will grow so much as a person.

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Emotion #3

Feeling overwhelmed

Yes you will feel overwhelmed from time to time, it’s completely normal. How many times do you think you will come home to a messy house, a pile of dishes, a racoon spreading your garbage everywhere, dog puke all over the house, piles of laundry, etc. SHIT HAPPENS! You’re only human and some weeks might be more stressful, or you might be lazy or tired.

It’s okay to feel overwhelmed but what’s important is dealing with it properly. The last thing you want is for your shit to get out of hand. Best thing to do is to breathe and make yourself a to-do list, prioritize what’s important and just get through it. It’s achievable if you want to resolve it.

There is no need to panic about the emotions I mentioned above. Feeling these are quite common, yet people never really talk about it, mind you, it’s not really a conversation starter… ‘’ Hey hey! I sing made up opera songs to my dogs in my underwear’’. Being a homeowner comes with big responsibilities. Organization is very important. Establish times and dedicate specific days for doing chores (it’s called a calendar). You will sometimes fall behind, but it’s important to know how to pick yourself up. My boss once told me that it’s okay to make mistakes or forget something, but you need to make sure that you have a solution in order to resolve the problem.

Sources:

http://www.ifweweredogs.com/en/2014/05/13/el-perro-millonario-2/

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Vanessa Barbeau

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