Save As Much As You Can This Year

Posted on Monday 6 February 2012

Believe it or not, there are many expenses that you can actually save money on which most people consider to be completely nonnegotiable. You can actually save money using the Internet on everything from real estate to car insurance to business expenditures – all you have to do have is the patience to look and the wherewithal to actually find the price comparison websites that have the information that you need.

Do not let the volatility of the current economy and a possibly personally financially dire situation stop you from comparing absolutely everything that you possibly can on line – you should compare life insurance, you should compare car insurance, you should compare business insurance. Below are some tips on how to save as much as you can miss year without reducing your overall quality of life.

– Look for every price comparison website that you possibly can

The first step, and the linchpin in this entire effort, is for you to be able to properly use the Internet and the price comparison websites on it to lower every bill on your monthly budget. You must first find the reputable price comparison websites that will allow you to compare life insurance policies against each other for price and value, and then do the same thing all the way down your list – car insurance, business insurance, unemployment insurance, disability insurance, health insurance for you and your entire family, and anything else that you can possibly think of.

The big point that will bring you success is not to give up and to do the legwork required after you have found the proper price comparison websites.

– Call companies with the information

The problem that many people have in calling their various insurance companies is that they do not have the market information, nor the information about that individual company, that will give the agent on the other end the impression that any sort of research has been done. In a purely capitalistic society, why should the person who was working for the company be in any way responsible for providing you with the information that may lower your insurance payments? It is your complete responsibility to make sure that you know where this company stands in relation to other reputable businesses that are providing the same types of services.

The only thing that you must do after this is to approach each company from a purely business perspective – if they do not provide you with the greatest amount of value, simply hang up the phone and move onto the next company. This is the way that you will be able to save money on every single bill this year without fail.

– Use the Internet for groceries and clothes as well

These days, the online coupon business is better than ever. All of the major retailers have deals with the major coupon sites online to offer their best deals through that medium. This is because everyone from the Fortune 100 companies on down is moving into the electronic and mobile commerce environment.

savvy @ 8:00 AM
Filed under: General Finances
Frugal Dating Tips for Married Couples

Posted on Friday 3 February 2012

Just because you are married doesn’t mean you should give up date night with your husband or wife. Actually, a date every now and then can do wonderful things for your marriage. Unfortunately dates often come with a hefty price tag, making them impossible for some couples to afford. Luckily there are some great date night ideas that fit into almost any budget. If you are married and would like to know how to be frugal about dating, the following tips can help.

1. Plan a Do-It-Yourself Picnic

Given the rising costs of almost everything, dining and entertainment are certainly no exception. A perfect remedy to this is a do-it-yourself picnic. This will not only save money, but will give you and your spouse some quality alone time together. Pick a park or picnic area with limited traffic to avoid interruptions and distractions. Pack a light dinner and an inexpensive bottle of wine and enjoy every minute of your frugal date.

2. Save on a Babysitter

If you have kids, you know a reliable, responsible babysitter can often set you back quite a bit of money. If you can, try to get your children’s grandparents or other relatives to watch them. This will help you save money and give your kids time with their family. If you do not have any family members nearby, make a babysitting deal with a trustworthy neighbor. In exchange for them watching your kids, you will watch theirs the following weekend.

3. Go to the Early Matinee

Movie prices have gotten incredibly high, but most movie theaters still offer cheaper prices until the early evening. If you and your spouse really want to catch a flick, try to make it to the earlier matinee to save some money on your movie tickets. Early matinees are also a smart idea if you plan on dining out for dinner on your date. You will be less likely to purchase snacks if you know dinner is coming after the movie.

4. Keep an Eye Out for Restaurant Promotions

Many restaurants these days offer excellent promotions on their food. This not only gets people in the door, but saves them money as well. Keep an eye out for promotions at restaurants in your area. Often times you and your spouse can both dine for around $20. Also pay attention to restaurants near you that feature daily specials on food and drinks. Take advantage of these specials whenever possible to save you and your spouse some money on dining.

5. Forego the Pricey Drinks at Restaurants

Many people do not realize how expensive drinks are at restaurants. The truth is drinks at restaurants are often very pricey and can quickly make a small bill much larger. Try to skip the drinks at dinner to save money. If you and your spouse are really in the mood for a cocktail, stop at a small bar on the way home. Drinks are usually much cheaper at bars. Better yet, stop at a party store and pick up some drinks to have when you get home. This will save you from having to drive home after drinking.

6. Stay in for the Evening

A wonderful frugal date idea for married couples is to plan a romantic dinner and stay in for the evening. If your kids are at a babysitter, it is often nice to have a relaxing date together at home rather than going out. Make a yummy meal that each of you love and rent a movie. You will be surprised how much money you can save simply by staying in for the night.

These are all great frugal dating tips for married couples. Keep in mind the main goal of your date is to spend time with your spouse, not spend tons of money. These ideas will easily allow you to have a wonderful date with your spouse without breaking the bank.

Guest post from Jaime Castle. Jaime writes for OnlineDating.org.

savvy @ 8:00 AM
Filed under: General Finances
I Know There is a Risk…Should I Insure it or Not??

Posted on Wednesday 1 February 2012

This guest post was provided by Lynette Argent at Million Dollar Woman. Million Dollar Woman is an Australian insurance brand offering Life Insurance products designed to meet the unique needs of women.

I am sure a lot of times, when we are confronted with this question of whether to go in for insurance or not, we find it difficult to ascertain if that particular risk is actually insurable and whether the risk is worth insuring or not.

Taking out insurance is one way of controlling the financial aspects of the outcomes of a predictable and uncontrollable eventuality. What we do is, we trade a situation of risk for a situation of financial certainty by insuring that risk. When we take out insurance on a particular “thing”, it becomes the insurers or insurance company’s responsibility to compensate for any financial loss that we might incur because of a future event involving that “thing”. As such, the risk of financial loss is transferred from the person to the insurer.

What is to be noted is that the main function of insurance is not to make a profit for the entity, which has taken out the insurance, but only to be compensated for the loss. For example, the insurance company will not pay out the claim, if you wilfully set fire to your old dilapidated house to raise money for the building of a new one.

In most of the cases, compensation to the insured will be in the form of a cash payment equal to the loss of the damage, replacement or repair of the damaged or restoration of the damaged.

However, it is to be noted that not all insurance can compensate adequately. For example, with Life or Accident Insurance you can never derive at the cash equivalent of a person’s life or limb nor replace / repair / restore a death. What these types of insurance can do is provide a cash equivalent to compensate  loss of income, etc.

So if there is a tangible risk to something to which we can attach a monetary value and the possible outcome of that risk becoming a reality will result in a financial loss for us, we should insure it.

Then again, now that we know which risks should be insured, we also need to understand, which are the risks which cannot be insured. Let us investigate “things” or “risks” that might be uninsurable:

  • Lack of monetary value– if objects or entities with monetary value should be insured, it is obvious objects with no monetary value cannot be insured. For example, even if the photograph of your pet is extremely precious to you, it is not an artefact and has no monetary value. Thus, cannot be insured.
  • Expected Losses– even if the monetary value of a subject is known, it cannot be insured, if there is a sure loss that is about to happen to it. Best example for this, is a dying person. They are most definitely insurable but cannot be insured because we know for a fact that they are going to die in the immediate future.
  • Catastrophic Risks– these are risks which affect a large number of people, a particular region or even a complete region. For example, although our house is definitely insurable, it might not be insured against the risk of earthquake, if you live in a high seismic zone. This is because the occurrence of the earthquake is going to affect a large number of people and not only you.
  • Rare Risks– on the flip side, if a risk is a rare one and its possibility is extremely unlikely, then also it will not be insured. An example for this would be you losing your automobile in the event of an inter-galactic theft. As existence of aliens is yet to be validated by the Australian government, not many people will opt for insurance against alien theft, the law of large numbers will not apply and you will not get insurance.

Finally, a simple checklist can easily help us in deciding if we should or we can insure our particular risk of an event occurring:

  1. Is the event or risk uncertain?
  2. Would the occurrence of the event be unwanted?
  3. Would the occurrence of the event result in a monetary loss?
  4. Would the event occur because of the action of one or more people?
savvy @ 8:00 AM
Filed under: General Finances