Category Archives for "Economy"

Kids and Money — November 26, 2009

More of my catching up…

Chris McClelland presents How social networking sites can also help you save some money posted at Lucrative Investing.

jim presents Best CD (Certificate of Deposit) Rates posted at Blueprint for Financial Prosperity.

Ben Dinsmore presents Reduce Your Hot Water Bill with this One Simple Tip! posted at Trees Full of Money, saying, "While washing oatmeal off my 10 month old's face this morning, I came across an effective way to save on hundreds of gallons of hot water each year!"

Billeater presents Ten Ways to Save Money During Pregnancy posted at Billeater.

Stingy Student presents Best Amazon.com Discount Sale – 90% off for Back To School Shopping posted at Stingy Students, saying, "Get up to 90% off at Amazon.com for back to school shopping!"

Silicon Valley Blogger presents How To Improve Your Credit Score: A 6 Step Plan posted at The Digerati Life, saying, "Teach kids about maintaining a good credit score!"

The Smarter Wallet presents How To Consolidate Debt: Ways To Reduce Your Debt Load posted at The Smarter Wallet, saying, "Teach your kids about how to manage debt."

Ray @ Financial Highway presents Canadian Discount Brokerage Review and Comparison for TFSA and RRSP posted at Financial Highway, saying, "Discount Brokers"

Banker Saver presents Sneaky Bank Fees: How To Avoid Those Extra Charges posted at Banker Saver, saying, "Let's teach our kids how to avoid sneaky bank fees that eke away at our savings."

Investing Toolkit presents Dollar Cost Averaging Basics posted at Investing Toolkit, saying, "We explain dollar cost averaging, an important investment principle that everyone should know."

Kids and Money — November 25, 2009

Here's 21-30, continue from the November 24, 2009 edition from yesterday.

Summer presents Teaching Your Kids to be Energy Efficient posted at Wired For Noise.

Daoud presents 15 Fun Things To Do For Under $1 posted at Practicing Parents.

Jenny presents Strict Spending posted at Stop Spending Money, saying, "It is not too difficult to learn how to budget and still be happy."

Ella Moss presents MY KINDER UNIVERSE « Zodiac Times posted at Zodiac Times, saying, "child-care summer-time blues"

Daniel Drew presents Small Business Loans posted at My Business is doing well should I choose an SBA Loan?, saying, "Many companies in the US are ready to help businesspersons when they need financial assistance. The lending companies have a team of experts who can guide you about matters pertaining to unsecured loans, so that you can make a smart financial decision."

Kate Hopkins presents 100 Money-Saving Lessons from Poor College Kids posted at Online College Degree.org.

Jack Schmidt presents Albert Einstein and Your Personal Economy posted at SectorMatic Money Journal, saying, "SectorMatic Money Site – Personal Finance | Everything for the Big Spender on a Budget. Now you can live like a fat cat, even if you're on a money diet. Laugh all the way to the bank with Jack Schmidt and SectorMatic. It's for you!"

Barry presents Managing Surplus Money In The Short Term posted at Associate Money.

Cindy S presents Top 10 Things I’d Like To Teach My Children About Money posted at Oh My Aching Debts, saying, "Do you watch your grown children making the same mistakes that you made? Here are some of the things that I wished I had taught mine."

CindyS presents Top 10 Things I’d Like To Teach My Children About Money posted at Oh My Aching Debts, saying, "Some of the things that I would like to teach my kids about money."

Chris McClelland presents Credit card perks that you might be missing out on posted at Lucrative Investing.

Kids and Money — November 24, 2009

Here's 11-20, continued from yesterday's edition of Kids & Money.

Chris McClelland presents Apprenticeships aren posted at Lucrative Investing.

Chris McClelland presents Here posted at Lucrative Investing.

Jeff Rose presents Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader? (Kind of) posted at Jeff Rose.

Patrick @ Cash Money Life presents Starting Our Child on the Right Financial Path posted at Cash Money Life, saying, "My wife and I have started our child on a strong financial path by opening a saving account for her and starting a college education fund."

Super Saver presents Preparing our Child for Job Market Uncertainty posted at My Wealth Builder.

r00tman presents 11 Other Laws | majesticvision.com posted at Digital Spirituality, saying, "Thanks!"

Mrs Bankrupt presents Raising Financially Smart Adults, What Can You Do Today? posted at Mrs. Bankrupt.

Madison presents Bank of Dad – Will Your Kids Be A Client? posted at My Dollar Plan.

oneadvice presents IVA Bank Accounts posted at One Advice, saying, "Been accepted for an IVA but worried that you cannot get a bank account? Need to move away from a bank that you are in debt too? You CAN get a bank account! Find out how…"

KCLau presents Why the worse classmates are wealthier than you? posted at KCLau's Money Tips, saying, "Discusses if there is a correlation between academic success and financial well-being"

Kids and Money — November 23, 2009

Okay, so I screwed up and kind of forgot about the Kids and Money blog carnival for a while.

About six months, in fact. But nobody's counting, right? So, I have about 1000 submissions to wade through. Here's my plan – one set of ten every day until I'm done.

Here's 1 through 10.

Sam presents New !! How to Pay for College posted at Surfer Sam and Friends, saying, "How to Pay for College Smart Ways to Pay for Your College Did you know that the average cost for tuition and room and board is $32,000 at a private college? …"

Gregory E. Rouse presents Frugal Business posted at Frugal-Living-Skills Blog, saying, "First, we don’t know how to do math today… People will often spend money to save money (which is a paradox) or spend money to make money. We seem to forget that every penny spent has to be earned back."
and then some. A penny saved is a penny earned is the old saying. It didn't take into account income and sales taxes.

besthotel presents Banyan Tree Luxury Hotels posted at List Of Best Hotels In The World 2007, 2008, 2009, saying, "Luxury hotels and spa resorts @ banyan. To live there is like a dream"

endowments presents Endowment Life Insurance Policy Blog Surrender my endowment policy posted at Endowment Policy, saying, "Some information on how to sell life insurance endowment policy"

Jack Schmidt presents 3 Credit Cards That Could Change Your Life posted at SectorMatic Money Journal, saying, "SectorMatic Money Site – Personal Finance | Everything for the Big Spender on a Budget."

Barry presents Saving Money With Do It Yourself Projects posted at Associate Money.

Master Your Card presents Soft Pull vs. Hard Pull: Which is What and Who’s Responsible? | Master Your Card posted at Master Your Card, saying, "The precise formula that credit reporting agencies use to determine your credit score is as elusive as Google’s PageRank algorithm. But there are some things we consumers understand well about the factors that go into your credit rating. One such item that has a weighty presence on your credit report is a credit inquiry – that is, when someone (including you) checks out your credit history for whatever purpose. Conventional wisdom dictates that having many credit checks on your credit report is bad, while having fewer is better. But that’s not necessarily true."

Jonathan from Debt Loans presents What You Need to Know About Home Equity Loans | Debt Loans posted at Debt Loans, saying, "Home equity loans can be appealing loan options for a number of reasons. Still, before you seek out this type of loan, make sure you know what you are getting into. There are lots of things that you should know before you apply for that loan."

Carlos Sera presents An Unexpected Tale – Teach Your Children Well posted at Financial Tales, saying, "As a young boy I was blessed to know and learn from my Uncle Segundo or Tio Segundo as I knew him. He like so many other relatives came to live with my family for a short time as they fled their beloved Cuba to make a new home in the welcoming arms of the United States. Tio Segundo was like many Cuban exiles. He came to this country in his late 40’s by himself, penniless and left behind everything that he knew and cherished. In Cuba he was an intellectual, a philosopher, a consultant to Presidents, a lawyer and the Mayor of Holgin, the second largest city in Cuba. This tale teaches us that the unexpected happens and that you must prepare."

jim presents How Secured Credit Cards Work posted at Blueprint for Financial Prosperity.

Tomorrow: 11-20.

How to Keep Your Cool on Black Friday

This is the first day-after-Thanksgiving sale I'll actually have available, as I'm currently unemployed, like over 10 percent of the nation.

But I, for one, won't be up at 4am, standing in line at Kohl's. And I certainly won't be at Wal-Mart at midnight.

I used to be in the retail industry, and – perversely – I really enjoyed it. It was exciting. I loved setting up the store, previewing the merchandise and promotions, and getting that first flood of traffic. The day seemed to fly by and before you knew it, you had your biggest day of the year in sales (until December, that is).

But now I don't like it so much. I really hate waiting in line.

So I wait online 🙂

Yes, I do most of my shopping online. At Amazon. I really don't mess around anywhere else. I do have a soft spot for Staples; they seem to offer really incredible deals on stuff I like.

If you ARE going to brave going out into the cold, rain, sleet, and/or snow, I have a few suggestions for you.

 

PRIORITIZE

What is the ONE thing you most want to buy? That's where you must focus. Everything else is just gravy for the proverbial turkey you want.

Enlist your friends. Yes, many of them will be out and about, doing the same thing as you. Exchange favors. I buy for you here, if you buy for me there. But remember to keep your eye on the prize. If you want that something special, get in line first.


PROTECT YOURSELF

Inevitably, somebody gets crushed in the mosh pit that used to be Wal-Mart. Don't be that guy. If things start getting out of hand, escape. I'll tell you a little story of a mob scene I was a part of about 10 years ago. It was New Year's Eve. I was in San Francisco with my friend. We decided to check out the scene, despite our best judgement. We were young.

We happened upon a scene where a major intersection was completely crowded. People were climbing scaffolding, up the face of buildings. Tipping over cars. Then, it happened…

We looked up and saw the mounted police coming. The crowd froze. Then they panicked and ran. So did we. I became Reggie Jackson in the 1977 Word Series, game 6 (the final game), knocking people over at a full sprint. I was NOT going to be a victim.

I was most definitely in the wrong place at the wrong time. I chose unwisely. But I was damned if I was going to get crushed by a crazy crowd.

So, be careful and shop defensively.

Some stores now do a tiered sale, where supposdely the best deals are early in the morning, but some other cool deals take effect after the first rush. Retailers do this for obvious reasons – to smooth out the sales during the day by getting shoppers to come in later. Some smaller retailers benefit greatly from this practice because they are often the 5th, 10th, or 20th choice among their customers. You can get some really cool stuff by being among the first at the scene when the new intra-day promotions begin.


LAYAWAY

Here's where you can benefit from my retail experience. This week, before Friday, check with your favorite stores on whether they have a layaway program. Layaways are back in vogue because of the poor economy and the fact that a lot of folks are unemployed.

This is what you do: Scout the "pre-sales" ads and find those things you really want. Put them on layaway NOW, no matter the price. On "game day," go in, return the merchandise, and buy it at the sales price.


Better Strategy

Keep your item on layaway until mid-December. Depending on how sales have gone, retailers may offer the same goods for sale at lower prices. They know they have a very short window in which to sell this promotional merchandise, and they're hellbent on getting rid of it. So, again, keep your merchandise on layaway until you get to a price with which you're comfortable. Then take it off layaway and buy it at your price.


SHOP FOR NEXT YEAR

The day after Christmas is a retailers busiest day. It's not his biggest sales day, but if you took out all the returns, it just might be right up there. Retailers are often in a big hurry to get rid of extra inventory after Christmas, and you'll often find firesales. If you still have your item on layaway, there's a good chance, if it didn't sell well, that you'll get the best price after Christmas.

Or, just do what a lot of enterprising people do: Shop for Christmas 2010. As long as you have the room to store the stuff, this is a great strategy for getting "staple" type items at great prices. You certainly have to be a good planner and remember where you put the stuff, but it's a great money- and time-saving strategy. Plus, your anxiety levels and blood pressure will thank you for it.


JANUARY

If you're buying for yourself, or for someone in 2010, shopping in January is often the best time of year to get outstanding deals. Remember all that merchandise the retailers wanted to get rid of before Christmas? Now they''re absolutely desperate to rid their shelves of merchandise.

Another thing people do is return stuff in January. The day after Christmas might be the biggest single return day of the year, but January brings in a lot more returns than those last few days of December. Take advantage of that.

This is especially true of Costco and electronics and computer stores. You can often find incredible "open box" deals in January. Dad just couldn't get the new Mac to work (where's the right click button?) so he returned it.

Guess what? Open Box Bonanza! Apple will sell that thing for sometimes HUNDREDS less than retail. And all that's "wrong" with it? The box has been opened and Jimmy peeled off a sticker. I'll take that deal any day.


I hope this gives you food for thought on how best to brave the crowds on Balck Friday and get the best deals possible. Of course, you can bet I'll be here, banging away at my computer, picking up great deals, free shipping, and sipping on a hot chocolate.

To this day, however, I still miss the excitement of a great Black Friday. But I suppose that was because I was on the other side of the cash register.

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