Tag Archives: tips

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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5 Tips Young Homeowners Need to Know When Shopping for a House

Ok so most of you can probably relate and others hang on, because it’s probably heading your way eventually. Becoming a homeowner at a young age has its perks, but can also bring you many surprises too. ‘’Oh shoot I forgot to buy dishwasher soap’’ or ‘’Oh yeah, we need a lawnmower to cut the grass…’’. These are just some of the few examples of random thoughts that may run through your head, but there are many more (trust me way more).

Most people generally move into an apartment first and get the ‘’feel’’ for living on their own, which is great, good for you, but what I’m talking about here, is cold turkey move into a house straight from mom’s, oh and to make it more interesting, you’re 19 years old. How is this possible you may ask? I won’t get into all the financial details but with hard work and dedication in life and of ‘course parental guidance, you can achieve anything you set your mind too. Also, my parents helped out with the legal paper work and all that stuff, because let’s face it, at 19, who knows how to buy a house? Mom, dad, help? K thanks.

I’m writing all this wonderful stuff because I want to share my experiences as a young homeowner to everyone! Friends, family and the world. If you’re young and about to buy your first house I’m sure you have many questions and random things you’re wondering about, so hopefully I can get it covered with my Young Homeowners: The Survival Guide. A series of blogs meant to guide all you young Padawans. Wish I had this when I was first getting my house!

Don’t stress it; we will get through this together!

Tip #1: Visiting Houses

dream garage

Dream Garage

Reality

Reality

When you start visiting houses, you should visit more than one. I visited the garage of my house and was like ‘’K, where do I sign?’’. The car junky in me was happy to live in a garage (also, I had 3 cars, a dirt bike and other garage-needing elements). ‘’There’s a house too…cool, I’m sure it’s fine. This garage though!’’. All my car geeks out there, you can so relate to this. Be wise, visit the entire house.

Tip #2: What can you afford?

money

This is actually tip #1, seriously. Don’t be visiting million dollar homes your youngster self can’t afford. So ya, check this out first, because you definitely don’t want to be eating Kraft Dinner for the next 10 years. The main purpose of getting the house was to have an investment that could grow over time, if you’re putting yourself into serious debt, this is not recommended.

Tip #3: Old vs. New

rustic living room

Also depending on what you can afford, this will determine if your house will be an older house or a newer one. Mine is old, BUT, I like vintage & ‘’cottage-style’’, cozy homes. It comes down to taste too, but renovations are always an option whether you buy old or new. Just get a place you’ll be happy living in for several years, enough time to make a profit.

Tip #4: Make it your own

Horrible wall paint

Tip #4 sort of relates to number 3. This is where I messed up but it was kind of weird how it all happened and also there’s a good chance this will not happen to you. I moved into a house that was entirely furnished. And by entirely furnished I mean EVERYTHING was there, from furniture and appliances to dishwasher soap and cigarette butts in the ashtray. In case you already guessed it, yes someone died (not in the house in case you’re wondering and I did ask) and I bought their house. Creepy, I know. So all that being said, it was difficult for me to do much personalization at first because the house was decorated (super cheesy by the way, we’ll talk more about the house décor later) from top to bottom. This made it hard for a ‘’fresh start’’, but I didn’t care I was getting my own place, finally (sorry mom). Before moving in, your best bet it to clean and repaint and redecorate with things that define you. I felt like an old man for a few months, we’ll eventually talk about the treasures I found in this house though.

Tip #5: Be excited and proud

HAPPY HOMEOWNERS

It’s your first freakin’ house! Get excited about it; lose your marbles a little. People still can’t believe I was so young and they still can’t believe it today. Best question I get asked all the time is ‘’do you still have your house?’’ I always laugh but proudly say yes, yes I do. The first day I got the keys I was so excited I invited all my best friends over (back then when you’re 19 that’s like 12 people); we had Champaign and partied all night. I totally didn’t apply tip #4 and I moved in right away and slept on the living room floor for an entire week!

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Vanessa Barbeau

Marketing Professional

Hungrycookie

Food And Travel

Discovering My Kitchen

Learning to cook one recipe at a time.

The Survival Guides

A blog site about surviving life's challenges

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Melanie Prada

A small cluster of everything I love