Smartphones make our lives easier but the monthly charges for the service can break our wallets. Let me share some ways to help you save on that bill.
Try owning your own cell phone out right. That will save you tons on your monthly bill. Usually those installment payments average around $25 a month. My suggestions go with an older model in order to save and if you can afford it buy it out right. Also check out Craigslist or apps like Offer Up in order to avoid that additional $25 a month.
GO FROM BIG TO SMALL
Switch from a major carrier to a smaller one in order to save. For example MetroPcs will save you about $20 a month versus going with T-Mobile. How can that be? Well Metro Pcs is smaller carrier but they use T-Mobiles network. That means savings to you.
STOP UNLIMITED DATA PLANS
Last but not least look and see how much data you are using. If you’re using less than 3GB a month ditch the unlimited plan and save the money. Get a data plan that fits usage better. Also think about how you use your data. Meaning if you work from home you can just use your Wi-Fi instead of data so you may not need as much as you think. Go back and look at the last 6 months of your data usage and average it out. That should give an accurate amount of data that you use therefore making a better decision.
ASK FOR A DISCOUNT
Keep in mind carriers are fighting for your dollars so why not call your carrier and see if they can offer you a discount. The worst they can say is no.
You no longer have to be wealthy in order to invest your money. There is an app for that. Have you heard of Stash?
My daughter who is a millennial told me about this app. Basically, you don’t need a lot of money to start investing, just $5 a week. For young adults starting out they can now start investing young.
So how does it work?
You have to choose what stocks or funds you want to buy. Stash makes it easy kind of like investing for dummies. Instead of giving you limitless investing options. They narrow it down to 30 stocks and funds. Plus every fund is explained in very simple terms. Making the entire process easy and not intimidating. All of the stocks or funds are trade under the ETF (exchange traded fund)
The fees they charge are $1 a month. If you trade $5000 or more the fees go down to .25% a year. Making it all affordable.
How can you purchase stocks and funds without purchasing the entire amount? They allow you to purchase fractions of stocks where other traditional places won’t.
Stash came around in October 2015, a fairly new concept. Since the launch, of course, there are always those that follow a good idea. Another similar app is called Acorns. They basically allow you to round up your small purchases. That extra money goes towards buying stocks and funds. Once it adds up to $5 Acorns will then make purchases towards the portfolio you set up.
If you are in your 40’s it is essential you make smart moves with your money cause you may not have time to recover. Some must do’s you need to be doing with your money.
We love our kids and we don’t want them to struggle…that’s a great goal. But you must do for you first before you can do for others. So make saving for your retirement a priority over saving for your kid’s college education if you have to choose.
This one was a tough decision for me. But if you have people that will suffer because you died to get life insurance if you are healthy. When I left my comfortable corporate job I lost my life insurance policy. I have a child still in college she is still somewhat financially dependent upon her parents…so I went and purchased a term life insurance policy. It is pretty straightforward and affordable plus you can cancel once they become financially independent.
You’re in your 40’s so you are a grown up. You need to have grown up conversations. Talk to your parents about what they have in place when they get sick or die. Who has power of attorney both medical and financial? Do they have a will or trust? This could impact you. So knowing what they have in place can help you to better prepare. I personally am going through this right now. If you don’t have a plan get one a.s.a.p. Do you want your loved ones dealing with your lack of preparedness? They are already dealing with losing you. Why make it more difficult? Get your plan for death in place now. Ask yourself how you want your money, assets and medical decisions made and distributed? Here is a great article on the estate planning documents you must have. Just go to Moneytalknews.com.
Are you one of those people who hate to balance their checkbook every week? Or do you want to keep track of your spending and see where you need to cut down? Mint.com may be the solution for you.
It’s a website that makes it simple to keep track of all of your spending and investments, plus it will tell you whether you have stayed or strayed from your monthly budget and financial goals.
Here how it works, Mint.com will automatically pull all of your financial records from any account you provide information on, like your checking, savings, mortgage, 401k and any other financial items. Once you do that you can view it all in one place, therefore you can get a clear picture of where and how you are spending your money. You can also create budgets based on your spending and goals. It truly does all of the work for you. All you have to is provide the information and Mint.com does the rest.
In order for Mint.com to do this you have to provide your financial institution’s name, account and log in information. Your money cannot be touched by Mint.com, because it is a “read only” service, which means Mint.com only has the ability to analyze your finances and gather information. It does not have the ability to move your money in and out of any account. Plus they use the same security as most online financial services use.
Here is an example of how simple Mint.com works once you have set it up; if you go out to eat Mint.com will automatically put the amount you spent into your restaurant category. So you can see how much you have spent in that category. Therefore, you can stay on track. It will also allow you to set goals for each category, so you can reduce spending and if you go over that allotted amount, it will alert you that you went over the limit. It will also assign a color of green if you are on track or red if you have gone over your spending. Plus mint.com will also alert you when bills are due too.
Mint.com also has a free application to download on your iPhone.
I have been using Mint.com for years and have never had any problems with security and I have to say it truly keeps me real on how much I am spending plus it keeps me on top of all of my accounts. The best part is it is totally free!
When you’re young it is hard to imagine being of retirement age. If life goes its natural course you will one day be that age. So take advantage of your youth and avoid these mistakes so you don’t retire poor.
Think saving money but do it wisely. When saving your money you want to make sure you are making the most on your returns. So don’t put it under your mattress or a traditional savings account with little return on your money. Instead invest it in a retirement account either a 401k or an IRA. Those have tax shelters and they also force you to keep the money in there because withdrawing earlier has some serious penalties. Therefore discouraging you from taking any money out.
Stop trying to keep up with your wealthy friends. If you live large and you don’t have the financial backing for this lifestyle it will most likely guarantee you won’t have enough money to retire because you are over spending.
Which leads to my next point. Financing everything. We live in a world where you don’t have to have the money in order to own it. Well if you finance everything and you don’t use the financing to benefit you then stop buying things you can’t afford. If you do you most likely will be paying interest, which is valuable money you could be putting into your retirement. So be discipline if you don’t have the money, don’t buy it.
A credit score is an important number not only for retirement but also in life. If you have a bad credit score than often that means you can’t get the best interest rate and instead will be paying a higher interest rate on that mortgage which means you’re wasting thousands of dollars over the life of the mortgage or loan. Stay on top of your credit report by getting it for free annually through Annualcreditreport.com.
Be wise with your money and make sure to enjoy your life. But sometimes waiting a little longer for something can give you better financial security when you really need it.
Life hacks that are useful and will make your life simpler, plus you can hack it with the stuff you may already have at home.
Remove water stains with mayonnaise
Mayonnaise isn’t just for your sandwich? It will also remove water stains left behind when a coaster should have been used on your table. According to Moneynewstalk.com slather some mayo on the table where the cup left the water stains. Leave for about 30 minutes and wipe the mayo off. The stain should be gone.
Jeans for dull razors
Dull razor no problem. Get an old pair of jeans and run the razor blade back and forth on your jeans and in the opposite direction of how you would shave. Just do a few brisk up and down movements with the razor on the jeans and that should sharpen them up.
Jammed Zipper? Solution a crayon
You can use a crayon to get a zipper unjammed. First off make sure the color you use won’t ruin the item for example with white boots don’t run a red crayon on it. Then take the crayon and run it up and down the zipper, which should unjam it.
Crayon removal from wall
If you need to remove crayons from your wall try paste-based toothpaste not gel. Rub it on and keep on rubbing. It has been found to be the best solution for crayon removal according to Moneytalknews.com but this solution may not work on all surfaces.
Jenn Spantak shares her life hack and recommends not cleaning. If you feel that’s a little extreme the one thing that I recommend doing is to vacuum everything! Your counter tops, your lamps, your floors, your table, everything. I find it makes things so much simpler especially if you have pets.
A couple other tips, this one comes from a professional maid. Use newspaper to wipe down your windows and mirrors to prevent streaks.
Also, if you are going to clean your windows use soap and dawn dish detergent. Believe it or not, that’s what most professional window washers use to clean them. Just a little bit of water, a little bit of dawn and a squeegee!
Prefer to cook at home for mom? Then save time and money by knowing what is on sale.
Save on chicken breast, bone in half shank ham or pork chops for $.97 per pound. You can buy up two packs of chicken and pork. Make a cross roast beef or steak for $2.47 per pound and get two packs for that price. Food City will have a 3-day sale starting on Friday ending on Sunday. Save on a 10 pound bag of Russet potatoes for $.99 or ground beef $1.77 per pound with a limit of two on both.
Make mom a boneless beef brisket for just $1.77 per pound at Fry’s. Make her a sweet dessert without breaking the bank. Fry’s has pineapples on sale for $.99 with a limit of four.
Get mom some cantaloupe for $.75 each.
Score a dozen eggs for $.69 each and get two -dozen for that price. At Albertsons buy boneless skinless chicken breast or thighs for $1.47 per pound.
Score a deal on a pound of strawberries for $.75 on Friday through Sunday at Bashas’ this week.
Don’t forget Wal-Mart price matches all of the ads.