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1

Top 10 Student Loan Tips for Recent Graduates and Not So Recent Too

Whether you just graduated, you’re taking a break from school, or have already started repaying your student loans, these tips will help you keep your student loan debt under control. By “under control” I’m talking about: avoiding fees and extra interest costs keeping your payments affordable protecting your credit rating paying those loans in full […]

2

Ask Me Anything: Tamari, Dishwasher Cleaner, Expired Sunscreen, Toilet Rings, and MORE

It’s time to reach into the inbox to answer more questions from my loyal readers—answers to which I suspect might be of interest to others. I love receiving your questions, by the way, so keep them coming!

Happy Father’s Day to all the Dads out there! Love, xo m ❣️

Got a question? While a black metal mailbox complete with a red flag filled with handwritten notes and letters is a beautiful thing, the best way to reach me is at: [email protected]. Please understand that I get messages by the thousands, so I am unable to reply personally. However, I respond to as many as possible in posts here on this blog and in my syndicated column, Everyday Cheapskate, which appears in many mid-size newspapers across the country.

3

Should you Repair or Replace your Broken Appliances?

You’re worried the washing machine may be on its last spin cycle. It makes a horrible screeching sound and needs a lot of coaxing to make it all the way through a full cycle. Should you spend $319 to fix this inefficient appliance or replace it with a $999 new model that will use less […]

4

What to Do When You Can’t Pay Your Bills?

You’ve lost your job. You’re furloughed. Perhaps your hours have been severely cut back. For whatever reason, suddenly you don’t have enough money to pay all of your bills. You’re scared, angry, worried, and seriously overwhelmed. You may have promises of unemployment benefits and stimulus-type money coming, but when? What are you supposed to do […]

5

5 Ways to Give Yourself a Raise

Is money a little tight? Hoping a raise will come through soon? I hate to burst your bubble, but even if it is exceptional, a raise probably won’t do much good. 

By the time you adjust a raise for taxes, you’ll be lucky to see half of it in your bank account. And if that’s not bad enough, nearly everyone who earns more automatically spends more. Reckless spending can consume a lot of cash, fast. 

I have a better idea. Give yourself a raise! How?! I have a few ideas for you in today’s post …

I’ll be waiting for you on the other side of your click.

xo Mary

P.S. Just like THAT, we went from 80 F days to sub-freezing nights here in Northern Colorado. So fast … and I love it. I have a roaring fire in the fireplace and hot coffee at the ready on this cold, rainy morning. It’s a beautiful day.

6

9 Easy Moves That Will Simplify Your Spending

Confused and stressed out about how to manage your money so you don’t run out before payday? Put these nine easy moves into action and you’ll be well on your way to simplify your spending.

I know what you’re thinking—simplify and spending in the same sentence? Ha! Like that’s even possible when we have credit cards, debit cards, bank accounts, bills, bill-pay, auto-pay, fees, penalties, interest rates, and fees to keep track of. How can we possibly make managing money simple?

By having a plan. By choosing to become accountable and then using every tactic possible to streamline and de-stress your money. I’ll show you how in today’s post! See you there … Love, xo m

7

Savvy Shopper Tricks and Treats

Big Announcement

Since 1992, I’ve invited you, my dear readers to send me your favorite time- and money-saving tips so I could share them with the entire audience.  And send them, you have! Via U.S. Mail and email.

In the beginning, I was able to publish nearly all of the good ones (there were plenty of duds) in a column I titled “Great Reader Tips.” Great readers, great tips!

You can participate in two ways—by contributing your best tips or by browsing and enjoying what your fellow readers have contributed. Uploading is super easy and I’ll be teaching you how to do it that.

But wait, there’s more!

To make this even more exciting, you’ll be able to compete for CASH prizes! We’ll kick things off with a Top Tips of the Month—1st Place: $100; 2nd Place $75; 3rd Place $25Did that just get your attention?! We’ll start each month with a brand new contest.

So, how can you get started uploading tips right now? You can’t because we haven’t opened EC² quite yet—but I will be announcing that very soon.

While you’re waiting, start thinking about and preparing your best tip(s). While your tips need not be original with you (meaning you didn’t think of it yourself), they must be written by you in your own words. Tell us what it is, what it does, and how it works for you. Next, take a picture with your phone or camera that demonstrates or represents your tip(s). You can upload another tip, trick, hack or terrific idea every day to improve your chances of winning.

In the meantime, keep watching for all the details about EC² Launch Day—it’ll be soon!

8

How to Win the Credit Card Balance Transfer Game

There’s nothing fun about credit card debt. An outstanding balance of $5,000 that is subject to 19.99% interest means you’re paying about $1,000 a year just in interest. Imagine if that $1,000 could go directly to repaying the balance instead. You could pay it off in record time instead of stringing it out for many […]

9

5 Home Buying Mistakes That Will Make You House Poor

Buying a home is likely the largest purchase you will ever make. This is not the time to make mistakes that could easily plunge you into a financial situation you cannot afford.  During my 18-year career as a real estate broker, I learned a lot of things but none as valuable as what not to do! […]

10

How to Live on a Budget and Love It

For many years I wouldn’t have anything to do with a budget because I couldn’t stand the idea of anyone—or anything—telling me how to spend my money. And where did that get me? Into one big financial mess.     Every month, when I ran out of money, I would turn to MasterCard and Visa […]

12

The Ultimate Risk-Free, High-Yield, Guaranteed Investment

From time to time, this kind of question pops up in my inbox:  How can I get started investing in stocks and mutual funds that are risk-free and have guaranteed high rates of return? Of course that makes me laugh hysterically, not only because there is no such thing as a risk-free investment let alone […]

13

The Gift of a Crisis

It was the worst day of my life. Not one of the worst days. Not a day where not one thing seems to go right. Worse than that. Worse than any day I’d ever experienced before that day, worse than any day since. And I would say that like most people, I’ve had some real […]

14

How Materialism Leads to Discontentment

I should not have even picked it up. I knew better. After all, what was I expecting from a magazine titled simply, SHOP Etc.?  I can say with all honesty that before flipping open the magazine, I needed nothing. Not a thing. I was content and quite busy with my work. If anything was tugging […]

15

16 Ways to Stop Worrying and Start Living the Life You Love

If you’ve ever have been in serious debt—or are right now—you know the feeling that your creditors own you lock, stock and bank account. I’ve been there, I know.

Debt steals your freedom one option at a time until you become its prisoner. Want out? I can help. Click through and I’ll see you there … Love, m xo 😍