Thursday, October 28, 2010

A Nice New Retirement Website

Here's a site that I just found. I like its down-to-earth feel, and if you're looking for retirement information, this site has tips and advice from the people who are living it now as opposed to those of us who are still dreaming the dream.

Visit Retirement-Online to learn more about the process of retirement and hear from real retirees on their thoughts of all things retirement.

Money Saving Tip of the Week #7: Halloween Costume Money Saving Ideas

With Halloween right around the corner, here are a couple ideas to save a few bucks on your costume.

* Switch Off -- You might still have Halloween costumes of yore stashed around your home. Rather than being the same thing you were last year or running out to buy a new costume, consider checking with friends, family or co-workers to see if you can trade old costumes with them.

* The House Search -- I'll bet you have a Halloween costume or two somewhere in your home, and you may not even know it. What do you wear to work each day? It might be a great, not to mention quick, easy, and cheap Halloween costume. Scrubs to be a nurse or doctor, a company logoed shirt or uniform, or similar outfit might work. Hawaiian shirt, board shorts, and flip-flops, etc. for a surfer dude or chic, lifeguard or whatever, is another idea.

* Do-it-yourselfer -- With a bit of imagination and a few props from the local dollar or discount store, you may be able to avoid the pricier Halloween costume shop or rental store. You'd be surprised what you can come up with just using the toy section of a store. I was even considering my son's toy fireman's hat -- yes, sadly it fits -- paired with suspenders, boots, blue pants and a white shirt for a last minute (and more impantly cheap!) Halloween costume.

Whatever you decide to be this Halloween, with a little imagination, you could save yourself a lot of money! So have fun, be safe, enjoy yourself, and beware of all that tasty candy!

Friday, October 22, 2010

5 Great Personal Finance Blogs

It's often interesting to me when I come across other personal finance blogs. I like to see how other people set up their blogs and the information they like to convey. Of course, the ones that really grab my attention are the ones that appeal most to the average person, not the ones that lose their readers in technical jargon and advanced investing strategies.

Here's a list of five personal finance blogs that I found particularly interesting (of course I couldn't resist the temptation to through my own in the list).


Sunday, October 10, 2010

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Money Saving Tip of the Week #4, 5, & 6

Since I haven't posted in a while, here are three money saving tips to make up for my absence.

With winter approaching, utility bills can start to climb as we attempt to keep our homes warm and cozy. Here are three tips that might assist you in reducing energy consumption and help you keep your utility bills down in the process.

Tip #1) Consider using space heaters to help add heat to your home. I have two of those little electric space heaters you can find at most home supply stores (they typically run about $10-25 US). While for safety reasons, I don't leave them on while I'm not around or while I'm sleeping at night, they can be great when you want to pump up the temperature of a room a little bit. I can raise the temperature of my master bedroom by 10-15 degrees fahrenheit in about half an hour. This saves me signficantly on natural gas used to run our sorely energy inefficient furnace.

Tip #2) Those same tiny little space heaters are often about the same wattage as those they put in the fancy electric fireplaces that are all the craze these days and sell for hundreds of dollars. Unless you're looking for ambiance, you can save a good amount of money by avoiding the purchase of an electric fireplace and just get the electric space heater instead.

Tip #3) I have found that the use of an electric blanket can make for additional savings on the heating bill. I purchased one last year on sale at Target for around $70 (I had to get one big enough for a king-sized bed). It keeps us warm and toasty and allows me to significantly lower the thermostat for our furnace at night.

I have access to the natural gas consumption rates for our home over the last several years and I have discovered that I have reduced our bill not only year over year, but by more than half compared to the people who were living there before us.