Posts Tagged ‘money’

365great Day 362: bargains

laelene Posted in 365great,Tags: , , , , ,

365great day 362: bargainsIt feels great when you can get a product or service for a steal. My mom has always gotten a certain rush from buying items at steep discounts and I’ve learned a little along the way. While I don’t like to negotiate prices, I can certainly do it and generally get a good deal. At markets where bargaining is expected, you can get huge price differentials, but even in some stores where negotiating isn’t the norm, you can get a bargain. Sometimes it’s as simple as asking what promotions and deals they’re offering. Sometimes sales associates do have a little leeway in discounts they can offer, like when you’re vying for home appliances. At the least, most retailers offer price match guarantees, so you can find the best price and combine that with other offers (like 0% financing, bonus gift cards, etc.) to get a better deal. Oh, and don’t forget coupons for more common household items. Or maybe you just love to haggle for a good price at a market or bazaar, like my mom. Whatever the case, it feels great to get a bargain on something!

365great Day 325: 0% financing

laelene Posted in 365great,Tags: , , , , ,

365great day 325: 0% financingI’m a fan of getting financing if there’s no interest. Lately I’ve been taking advantage of these sorts of deals a lot, from my laptop to our blinds to the washer dryer set. For anyone who can manage their money well, why not? It frees up my money to do other things in the mean time and I can feel more secure in case some emergency comes up. In fact, the only time I’d be willing to pay interest is on a home mortgage; every other financing option I’ve taken advantage of is only worth it if they’re promoting a period of no interest. When I was getting my car, that was my one non-negotiable when it came time to hash out the details. It’s insane to me some of the interest rates out there – you often end up paying off more in interest than the item itself ever cost! Why in the world pay double or more for something? It’s almost never worth it, so I stick to paying in full if there’s no 0% interest option. Financing is only great if it doesn’t cost me more! 😛

365great Day 162: couponing

laelene Posted in 365great,Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

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365great challenge day 162: couponingI never learned how to use coupons until Panda showed me a few years ago. I still rarely use them, but I’ve gotten to appreciate their value a whole lot more. I’ve managed to get cool shampoo for less than a dollar and enjoy some fun nail polish because of my couponing efforts. I grew up used to not buying things very often and when I did it was usually from China or some random small thing that I liked. These aren’t the type of things you find coupons for. When it came to household items, my mom got great deals sometimes by attending closeout sales and browsing swap meets. Our family just wasn’t into the couponing thing and I can’t recall using them as a child. In the past year or two I’ve started to pay more attention because Panda showed me how you can sometimes get free things. We had a lot of fun bonding over an outing to get free things and I really enjoy getting such a deal. I’ve also gotten more into the blogging scene and a lot of bloggers are mommy bloggers who write about saving money and will at least bring up coupons if they don’t actually focus on it as a topic. I think coupons are a great way to save money if you plan wisely!

Quality Street

laelene Posted in photo blog,Tags: , , , , ,

I was walking by Rocket Fizz in Westwood one day when I noticed a gigantic box of Quality Street sitting in the window. I can’t tell you how thrilled I was to find some of my favorite candies from England available in the US! When I saw the price, I was pretty shocked, but the next time I was there I got one because it made me too happy to see them (and get to eat them).

purple tin octagonal box of assorted quality street chocolates by nestle

Oh Quality Street, how I love to snack on you. Who can resist your vibrant colors, variety, and delicious chocolate morsels?

White elephant pig

laelene Posted in photo blog,Tags: , , , , ,

Today at the office we had a white elephant exchange, which was quite fun! I’m quite pleased with what I got and what I gave. 🙂 Here you can see that this fun piggy bank I ended up getting allows me to free up the water cooler for its original purpose. 😛

black oversized piggy bank with white dollar signs

A cute piggy bank that I can now use to save up a fund.

mini water cooler for desktop use repurposed as piggy bank

I'd been using this toy water cooler to save up change, but now I can actually use it for water!


laelene Posted in photo blog,Tags: , , ,

cash box full of money

Money, money, money.

holding a huge wad of cash

It's allllll mine!

Bling ring

laelene Posted in photo blog,Tags: , , ,

dollar bills folded into ring and elephant

Check out my handiwork combined into one awesome ring.

Elephant tip

laelene Posted in photo blog,Tags: , , , ,

Financial intelligence

laelene Posted in general blog,Tags: , , , , ,

My mom lectured me about smart financial moves today and though I was tired and didn’t really want to think about it, she makes a good point.   I can save a lot of money if I take advantage of tax breaks, save and invest wisely, and limit my spending.   At this point, I don’t really want to think about it and plan for it, but it really is the time to start as I get a steady paycheck.  Unfortunately (and despite one of my majors being Economics), I’m not really interested in the financial field and have little patience for all the complexities of it.   At the same time, I can save a lot of money by knowing how to handle my money smartly and not pay a financial advisor to figure that out for me.

It’s a bit of a dilemma because I just don’t have the interest, but the stakes are pretty high and the ultimate benefits do warrant a closer look.  As of now I’ve been letting my Roth IRA money sit there, whiling away, but what I need to do is invest it in a somewhat aggressive mutual fund or index or something.  There are many other things to do, such as figure what areas of tax avoidance I can take advantage of (note that that’s not the same as tax evasion, which is illegal).  I need to put in a lot of time and effort into this area, but I just don’t have the interest.  I wish I could just let someone else handle it, but why spend good money on something I can learn myself?

At least if I start early in my working life (like now), I’ll be setting myself up for a better future that will be able to ride out the periodic financial downs.  I just wish it wasn’t so complicated.

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