Sunday, August 30, 2015

StarKist Tuna Settlement. Get $25.00 or $50.00 in Coupons!

StarKist Tuna is settling with customers who bought their tuna from February 19, 2009 through October 31, 2014. Apparently they were under filling the cans and a class action lawsuit was brought against them. If you purchased this brand of tuna anytime in that time you don't need a receipt to make a claim. Just fill out this form here:

If they get many claims the cash settlement for each person will be smaller so it's hard to say how much each person might get.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

The Key to Success: Living Below Your Means

Many people are simply having a terrible time making ends meet month to month. People have boatloads of bills and some people have late payments on top of them. House payments, car loans, electricity payments, food, gas, student loans, on and on and on it goes.

People are drowning in debt. The average student loan debt for 2014 graduates is $28,000.

According to one source, the average American credit card debt is $7,200.00.

People are drowning financially and no one seems to want to talk about it. It's the secret struggle of many.

What is the answer to this? The answer to this is, more than anything, living below your means. I can already hear the cacophony of protests. "There is no WAY I can live below my means! I can't even live within my means much less below it!"

The truth is, most everybody can live below their means. This doesn't happen by itself, however. A strategy needs to be created. The first thing to do is the last thing some people want to do. That is. sit down and look at all the bills and create a budget. This might be terribly scary, to find out exactly where you are financially. The second thing to do is create a list of three goals.

Once you list all of your bills, take the smallest credit card owed on and think about how much you could put on it extra every month. In order to do this, you will have to cut out something else. Stop buying Starbucks and make your coffee at home. Stop buying those convenience foods and spend a little extra time on the weekends making meals and lunches. There is almost no one who can't cut back something. Learn to use what you have instead of making new purchases. Once you find something to cut back on, take that little extra and place it on the smallest credit card you owe money on. If that's $10.00 or $20.00 a month, that's fine.

If you owe $300.00 on that credit card and you usually pay about $20.00 a month, now you are going to pay $40.00 a month. You will pay this card off twice as fast. After you pay it off, you will then have $40.00 a month to put onto the next card. This is a snowball effect. Once the ball gets rolling, the feeling of being in control of your future should encourage you enough to keep going! The peace you feel will be worth it!

Don't get discouraged! This is a long slow process, but in the long run, you will be so glad you did it!

Look up Debt Free on Youtube and find videos to watch to encourage yourself along the way. You are not alone! Many people have been where you are and have worked hard to change that.

Happy Savings!

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

New Flooring Cost $545.00 plus $688 Labor. No Payments Ever!

We moved into this house 6 years ago. I wanted new flooring right away but I didn't buy any because we had other goals at the time. The flooring looked then about how it does in these pictures. The flooring is original to the house. As you can see, it's quite dated and in spots, very ugly. One of the things about our culture and the way people think is that living with flooring like this while you save can be simply unthinkable. So, people go out, buy new flooring right away on credit cards and then make monthly payments with interest.

 To my way of thinking, this is completely backwards. Why would anyone pay interest to someone else when they can save up and pay cash? Like I said, I have frugal genes and so this is just how I think. We had a number of goals that came before flooring. One of my goals was to buy a newer car. So, I spent a number of years saving money to buy my car with cash. Again, it doesn't make sense to me to pay interest if you don't have to. My old car was looking worse and worse and then when my husband got a newer car he had a junky old Geo he was driving, I decided to drive that to save more money on gas and parked my Subaru. I slowly saved $8000.00 and bought a Prius with cash. Yes, people looked at me sadly and with pity while I drove the rust old Geo. But I looked at them sadly and with pity, knowing most of them had car payments.
 The same is true with any of these types of purchases. My husband and I have been busy building a business over the last number of years and having money for the business has always been top priority for me (my husband is a little looser with the cash).
 So, for 6 years, I lived with what I had. Finally, I decided it was time. I found some linoleum that I liked at .99 a square foot on sale. This cost $545.00. I had a guy come out and he laid it for me for $688.00. Some of that was supplies he bought to lay it and some was labor. I made sure he bought glue and I payed him to glue it down because I don't like free floating linoleum (that was an extra $200.00).

I am so pleased with the outcome!

The pleasure of having the new flooring comes with no guilt over making monthly payments and interest. It is here free and clear.

No stress, no worries that the money is going to be already spent if there is an emergency because we have other money saved up for that.

Later, I want to do the rest of the house with wood laminate flooring. The living room and bedrooms are ugly with old carpets. It will be an overwhelming project, not because I won't save the money, but each room will have to have all the furniture removed. I am hoping we can do it ourselves and won't have to pay labor costs.

So I am thrilled with this new flooring. It is so worth it to save up and not have to worry or stress over the money aspect of things. If I didn't have the cash to pay for it, I would simply have lived with the old flooring. Simple as that.

Happy Savings!

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Reminder! Time to Buy Propane!

If you haven't yet gotten a summer-fill or a pre-pay for your propane, now is the time to do it. Locally, the last date is Aug 31st to buy. We just bought our summer fill and paid only .89/Gallon! That is an amazingly low price!

Summer-fill is when you get your tank filled during the summer for gas you will use during the winter. Pre-pay is when you pay for gas you project you will use during the winter at a discounted rate (rather than waiting until mid-winter to buy at high winter prices) but it is not put into your tank until winter-time, when you are low.

This year, we didn't do any pre-buying because we think with our new hot water heater, we won't need more than a summer fill. Hope we are right! I would hate to pay at winter prices! However, a pre-buy has a 300 gallon minimum here and we don't think we will need it.

Happy Saving!