When the wedding bells start ringing, your savings account starts cha-chinging. After spending a fortune on the rings, wedding, reception, tears, and a little sprinkle of regret, it may come as a huge relief that The Atlantic has reported couples can save from $480,000 to over $1,000,000 in their lifetime after being married. For our married readers, good thing you didn’t get cold feet, huh? Here are the ways a marriage can save you money:

Purchases in Bulk

What better location for a honeymoon than Costco? Already been? Live it up at BJs. Signing up for a Membership at one of these stores and then sharing all of your bulk purchases will shave you lots of money in the future. Spilt the cost of paper towels, toilet paper, food, etc. You would be getting tons and tons of supplies for just a fraction of the cost. Marriage is great, isn’t it?!

College Tuition

There is a new fad sweeping colleges around the globe. It’s not a fashion. It’s not a source of entertainment. It’s…getting married? Let’s correct that. It’s getting married to save money on tuition. If you are a prospective student and you are looking to qualify for lower in-state tuition, there are not many better pieces of proof of financial independence than being married. There are multiple California universities that have given in-state tuition to out-of-state students because they are married. Just make sure your parents no longer claim you as dependent.

Splitting the Bills

Whether having a roommate or just going out with a friend, it is likely that you have had to split a bill. Now, just take that process and spilt it with your spouse! Firstly, you may want to look into creating a joint account. Both of you agreed to put this money in, so there shouldn’t be a problem agreeing to use it as your source as your bill payments. Only half of every bill that comes your way, sounds like a good deal to us.

Social Security

This may be a little morbid to think about right after the wedding, but we all are going to die at some point. Look into, hopefully way longer down the road, into Survivor’s Benefits. This means that depending on the deceased spouse and the surviving partner’s age, the living spouse can go on collecting the other’s Social Security.

The Benefits

If both you and your partner have benefits at your workplace, being married can help you pick and choose the ones you both prefer at both companies. Maybe the dental is better at theirs than yours. Maybe your health insurance is to die to for. Sit down with each other and right out the pros and cons.

For more information on why getting married can make you rich, you can read the full Cheapism article


Things to Buy in October

October 1st, 2015 | Posted by admin in Smart Spending - (0 Comments)

The most scream worthy aspect of this spooky month is the deals you can get on a few particular items. Yes, that was a pretty cheesy introductory sentence, but a true one nonetheless. With the start of October upon us, you can use your strategic buying skills with a few tips from this blog to purchase an inexpensive car, go on a vacation of your dreams, prepare for next year’s warm seasons, or look tremendous in this year’s Halloween outfit. Let’s get started shall we? Here are some of the best items to buy in October:

A Vacation

October is that vacation sweet spot with summer traveling ending the month previous and holiday traveling starting up next month. There is still enough pleasant weather and enough lack of other tourists to have a marvelous time at a reasonable price. Due to the lack of vacations in the month of October, many vacation hot spots like cruises or resorts lower their price quite a bit. No other people AND lowered vacation costs? Why would anyone take a vacation NOT in October?!

A Car

A car? Really? That’s kind of a random month to buy a car. Well, not quite. All the newest car models are coming in any day now so the dealers are getting a little antsy to swipe those last year cars off of the lot. While you will probably not luck out with having the deal come close to paying you to take an older car off of their hands, you are likely to come to a very nice deal in your favor.

Halloween Products

You may think that this is exactly the wrong time to buy Halloween related things, and you are not completely incorrect. The best time to buy you Halloween products would’ve been in November when everything “Halloween” has huge discounts. If you didn’t plan ahead and are now stuck, never fear. The closer the date, the more discounted the items will be. If you do your purchasing mid-October, there will be a slight drop in price while not having the annoyance of too few of options left.


Even Cousin Earl can tell you with his consecutive six day worn Led Zeppelin t-shirt, cargo shorts, and muddy, worn work boots can tell you that denim is in a strange place right now. Outdated from the summer and far too early to wear for next spring, denim prices lower while they reside in the fashion vortex until they are social acceptable to wear again next year.

Summer Items

This one may go without saying. Heck, we even had a recent blog about it that you can read here. Bathing suits, patio furniture, grills, and sunglasses are all items that can be owned by you for far less than what they were worth four months ago. Plus you are going to need a new bathing suit and sunglasses when you go on the inexpensive October cruise we recommended earlier!

For more things you should buy in October, you can read the full Cheapism article.


Happy birthday! Unless it’s not your birthday yet, then happy future birthday! What did we get you this year? Now try not to get too antsy! Our gift to you is listing every place that can offer you something FREE or DISCOUNTED! What better two words are there to hear on your birthday other than “Happy birthday?” We don’t wish to keep the birthday party waiting much longer so here is your list:

Please note: Many of these options require being a member to their company rewards programs or receiver of their newsletter.

Free Retail Gifts

  • Gift at Sephora
  • Gift for your child at Toys R Us
  • Gift at Victoria’s Secret
  • Gift at Famous Footwear
  • Gift at Bare Minerals
  • Free popcorn and Showcase Cinemas
  • Free movie admission at Regal Entertainment Group
  • Free movie at Redbox
  • Free $5 gift card at Ace Hardware
  • Free $10 worth of game play at Dave & Busters
  • Free $ 5 gift card at DSW
  • 3 Extra Care Bucks at CVS

Discounted Retail Deals

  • 20% off coupon at Hallmark
  • 20% off coupon at Columbia Sportswear
  • 15% off coupon at American Eagle
  • 10% off coupon for World Market

Free Restaurant Deals

  • Free drink at Starbucks
  • Free meal at IHOP
  • Free lunch at Subway
  • Free app or dessert at Olive Garden
  • Free waffle at Waffle House
  • Free sandwhich at Einstein Bros Bagels
  • Free dessert at Applebee’s
  • Free donut at Krispy Kreme
  • Free burger at Red Robin
  • Free yogurt at TCBY
  • Free chocolate fondue at The Melting Pot
  • Free burrito at Qdoba Mexican Grill

For more free deals you can get on your birthday, you can read the full MoneyTalksNews article.


There are a couple of uncontestable statements that we are going to boldly state. The first statement is that it is fun to have fun. The second one being that making money is great. We have listed today some of the most enjoyable activities to do that can also make you some cash. Not all of these may suit your fancy, and some of these will take a lot of work and passion to put out some money worthy content, but all in all, try pick and choosing a few from this list and you will be doing what you love and possibly be happily compensated:

Starting a Blog

Hey. You’re already reading this one, so you clearly already have some interest in blogging. Maybe when you’re reading a blog, you are disappointed to see every one of them never have information that you would like to know. Why doesn’t this blog about cheese tell you what type of cheese to eat at what country during vacation?! If it’s not there, it’s the perfect opportunity to start it yourself. Time to become the preeminent blogger you didn’t know you were destined to be until this very second whilst reading this paragraph. You just need to start one using WordPress, Blogger, or Squarespace. Build yourself a beautiful blog with captivating content, and make it as entertaining as it is informative. An entertaining blog without substance or an informative blog without any pizzazz could both work, but won’t stretch as far as a perfectly balanced blog. But wait! How do we make money with this? Simple. One way is if your content is spectacular and the blog takes off, advertisers will throw money at you to showcase their products on your site. Another way is to use the Google Ads technology AdSense. Another way we’ll throw at you is to join Amazon Associates and put their links on your blog. A last option we’ll list is that if you have blogged so much that your writing could make a book, then make a book! You can package it and sell it as an e-book.

Take Pictures

Have an Instagram? You’re one step into turning it into a small career. Granted you’ll have to invest a little more money to buy more professional photography equipment. After that purchase feel free to capture away! Once you’ve built yourself a decently sized collection of remarkable shots upload them to one or more stock photography sites.  iStockPhoto, BigStockPhoto, and Shutterstock are a few examples. This isn’t a guarantee to boost your finances, but possibly in a week or possibly in seven years from now, your photos may be bought by companies or publications and that is when you will earn a little extra change.

Selling Baked Goods

If you’re keen to making bread or other delicious baked goods on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis, then don’t just waste that talent on your family or loved ones, use it on yourself to make money! OK, we’re kidding of course, but if it is a talent and hobby of yours, you may as well take advantage of it. Whether it’s bread, cookies, cake, honey, jam, or whatever else, take your homemade items to the closest farmer’s market and discuss with the operators what they’ll let you sell. After you all come to an agreement, you can sell your goods to the community.

Put Your Arts and Crafts Online

Those quilts and scarves you’ve been making for years deserve to be used by the entire world, so you should give them to everyone! For a price, of course. Let’s not forget that is the main objective of this article. Look into using the site Etsy. This is an Amazon-like site but instead of factory made products, it’s full of extraordinarily talented people posting dresses, furniture, toys, games, and accessories that they all made themselves! So open our own Etsy store, post pictures of your items, and let your business thrive!

Making Movies

Now, we’re not asking for a slide show of you and the folks on your weeklong trip at Martha’s Vineyard. Sorry. We’re sure it was lovely. What we advise you to do is to pick up a camera, think of a really cool idea for a five minute movie, and shoot it. It can be of a puppy superhero or a back flipping grandma. If it’s funny, intriguing, heartwarming, adorable, or all of the above, it may make a splash on YouTube, and the more popular it becomes, the more money will come streaming in.

For more ways to have fun while making money, you can read the full Simple Dollar article.


What better time to prepare for next summer than at the end of this summer? With the leaves now shading over into their magnificent auburn colors for the autumn months, there is a growing disinterest in the items so crazily demanded for only a few fleeting fortnights ago. And with disinterest comes the advantageous price drops. Barely a handful of shoppers will have some lowly priced summer items cross their mind. Notebooks, and backpacks, and jackets, and pumpkins are the items dancing in the limelight of most of the consumers’ minds, which is why it is a perfect time to strike the deals of these end of summer items:

Bathing Suits

The prices on these babies have been declining so significantly these past couple of weeks that even if you already have one it may be worth a new one or an extra pair. There are even a couple of more weeks to take a quick dip in the ocean or pool this month before the fall season starts. If you go to Macy’s you can get over half off the original price of bathing suits from Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Michael Kors, and more ineffable designer companies. For Victoria’s Secret enthusiasts, there are multiple bathing suits up to 60% off. There are also $20 to $40 suits at Old Navy going for less than $10 and $15, respectively.


You’ve worn those old, poor sunglasses out by now. Whether they were banged around in a bag or backpack, covered in sand scratches, sat on by Uncle Tim in a lawn chair, or maybe they are now lost in the abyss underneath the car seats, it’s time to send your brittle sunglasses to the Celestial Sunglass Palace in the sky. For a replacement pair of shades, you can check out The Sunglass Hunt which has over 200 pairs of sunglasses on sale at this moment! You can also take a look at some online retailers who have designer models with 80% off deals.


The last thing you need is that withered, broken patio chair falling apart under grandma and causing a broken hip. Luckily for you (along with both of grandma’s hips) is that stores need to move all of the summer patio furniture out of the building to start showcasing rakes, and shovels, and leaf blowers, and all the incredibly early Christmas decorations. Take advantage of Lowe’s 50% off deals, or Pier 1 Imports’ 70% off deals, or Home Depot’s 40% off deals. Pottery Barn is also in the race with taking $3,000 dollars off of outdoor selection. Yes, that’s right. Three THOUSAND dollars off.


Come on. You are a grill master. It’d be unfair to rob the world of your grilling talents for the fall and winter seasons. The problem is that your constant frippery burger flipping skills have worn your current grill quite a bit. What do you know?! Best Buy has grills that are up to $46 off! Could there be a deal better than that? How about Sears having deals for 50% off grills? With that being said, get buying so you can get grilling! We’re starving!

For more information on the best deals before the last days of summer, you can read the full US News & World Report article here.


4 Ways to Support Your Community

September 3rd, 2015 | Posted by admin in Community - (0 Comments)

Are you fan of the community you live in? Of the small businesses which are the heart and soul of it? Then after reading this blog, it’s time to shut off your computer and run down to a mom and pop store and buy some goods. Alright, maybe not this very second, but soon. It’s getting harder for local businesses to compete with larger corporations and online retailers. It may seem easier to some folks to drive past the local bookstore or coffee shop and get a brand named coffee on the way to the nearest mall, or to just not leave the house altogether and order paper towels with a few clicks of the button. It isn’t just better to support local business for their sakes, but for a healthier, more economic lifestyle for you. People that keep their business local build closer relationships with people in the community, are in better health from doing their errands more on foot, keeps the environment clean from less car pollution, and helps your economy by spending your money on businesses that are more likely to hire local workers. Sounds pretty good, right? Here’s what to do:


Yes, this is when we suggest that you join a credit union. No, this isn’t just because we are a credit union. You would like to keep your money in the community, so what better way than actually keeping your money in the community. It’s reported by The National Credit Union Administration that credit unions are more likely to offer higher interest rates on deposits, and lower interest rates on loans. Bankrate reports that credit unions usually offer lower fees than banks, as well. On the service end, credit unions cover smaller areas than banks, so it is more common for tellers and member service representatives to recognize you and give you more personalized service. Lastly, it is reported by The Institute for Local Self-Reliance that 60% or more of loans to small businesses are from small banks or credit unions. Credit unions make many loans from their communities so helping their communities flourish is a major goal.


You have to eat. This is not something we can give you tips to change. How we can help you hone into your need for food with generosity is by eating in the community. First thing you can do is start buying your produce at the closest local grocery store. If you want to up your game from there, then locate the closest farmer’s market. It has been reported by U.S. Department of Agriculture that since 1994, the number of farmers’ markets has quadrupled so finding one in your community is far less difficult. Also, taking a bite of an apple from the grocery store will taste fresh, but far less fresh than one plucked right off the tree and handled into your eager hand. Not after traveling miles upon miles to then sit for days and waiting for you to discover its freshness. You like your food organic? A survey conducted by the Farmland Trust and Farmers Market Coalition reported that 78% of farmers’ markets’ food meets organic standards.


How can you properly endorse and support your local business if you don’t even know what the local businesses around you are? It’s time to pull out a map and explore! Don’t have a map of your town? Take a trip down to your local chamber of commerce and ask for one. They are likely to have a few of them at the least. Another option is to crack those fingers and type into a search engine on the ole computer and do some light research on the local businesses around your location. One final thing to do is just go without one! Walk down the street and visit your community head on. Who knows what you’ll find?


This one is the most tricky due to smaller businesses not always being able to have prices as low as what large nationwide stores can provide. To compensate for this, you can set up a monthly local shopping budget. If the item costs a little more than online yet is still in the range of your local shopping budget, then it is like not a single dime has been wasted. If you need something repaired or cleaned, go local. The price will tend to be the same but the local owner and employees will but more car into the fix or cleaning because you are supporting their small business! It is a win/win!

For more ways to support your community, you can read the full Money Crashers article.


How to Save on a Labor Day Road Trip

August 27th, 2015 | Posted by admin in Holiday - (0 Comments)

There is a long weekend coming in two weeks! Wahoo! How are you going to take advantage of it? Trip to the beach? Bowling?  A Bonfire? Definitely not labor, at least. That’s the last thing we would want to do on Labor Day.  How about a way to relax while getting out of the house, and exploring the world around you? Yes, we’re talking about a road trip. We have mentioned road trips in previous blogs, and now there is a perfect opportunity to take us up on our suggestion. A road trip doesn’t have to cost much either, as long as you follow these tips and tricks:

Get Your Gas Cheap

You won’t be able to travel anywhere if you don’t have any gas in the tank. It’s not always cheap either. On a long road trip, sometimes it seems if just burning all the cash in your wallet as fuel is more productive than continuously filling up on gas. Luckily, there are several free apps that can help. The most popular gas app would have to be GasBuddy. It’s simple enough. Users write in the app the price they just paid for their gas. When they post their gas price they get points. When they get enough points, they are entered into a weekly drawing for a $100 gas card.  And when you are looking to fill up the tank, the app will give you the cheapest gas station closest to you.

Now, being an avid Waze user, I can validate the useful not just of Waze’s gas prices, but of the app as a whole. It is a GPS app run by the entire community that uses it. When navigating to a location, you can edit the map so report traffic jams, accidents, police cars, and, like GasBuddy, gas prices. All these are located into Waze to send you to your requested destination the fastest way possible. When it comes to gas prices, when you want to navigate to a gas station, Waze brings up a list of gas stations close to you. Each listing gives the gas station’s name, distance from you, and the price per gallon. If the price is high the cost will be in red. If it’s reasonable the cost will be in yellow, and if the price is a steal, it will be listed in green.

Lastly, another useful option is Gas Guru. Unlike GasBuddy and Waze which are crowd sourced, this app is consistently updated with information from the Oil Price Information Service, so you will never have incorrect, out of date information.

Keep Your Gas Reserved

Now that you have your gas, let’s not let it go to waste so fast. First, keep the air conditioning off as much as the temperature will allow you. Having it on can increase the fuel cost from 13% up to 21% according to the California Consumer Energy Center. While the air conditioning is off, let’s keep the speed down, shall we? Let’s not forget this is a road trip. We are not trying to hurry anywhere. We want to lounge in the car seat while taking in the moving, picturesque images of America. No need to speed down the trip a day or two shorter. Driving at the tolerable and reasonable speed of 55mph can cut the fuel cost by 25%.

Make Sure Your Car Is In Tip Top Shape

How fun will your trip be when you’re broken down on a deserted highway in the middle of the night two states over from home? Whether you are using your own car, borrowing a car, or renting a car, make sure the vehicle is in the best shape of its life before you embark on your adventure. The windows should be cleaned, the oil should be changed, the tires checked for correct air pressure, and all lights are bright, clear, and work well.

Make and Pack Your Food

A $15 meal at a diner three times a day is going to add up. A $5 meal at a fast food restaurant three times a day is not what the doctor ordered. Packing quick meals in bulk will save time, gas, and quite a deal of money. Filling a cooler with drinks, snacks, and cold cuts may be the most resourceful option for you.

Drive Away From Tolls

It can cost a buck, but it can also cost upwards of $30. Stopping at all these toll booths can be a real inconvenience and be an annoying road block to your trip as well. You can skip over them by programming your GPS to avoid tolls. Be careful with this option, though. Sometimes the length to avoid a toll road may be more expensive from wasted gas than it would be to just pay the toll.

Reside in Cheap Lodging

It’s time to get in contact with your college roommate’s ex-girlfriend’s best friend’s cousin that owes you a favor from that one time years ago who now happens to live along the way to your destination. Lodging expenses are likely to be the biggest cost of the entire trip, so try to obtain free bedding as many times as you can. If there is no way to get a free night’s stay somewhere, go to sites like Hotels.com to find out locations that have the cheapest night’s stays along the route. Safe travels!

For more tips on how to save for a Labor Day road trip, you can read the full Go Banking Rates article.


Sometimes, nothing is better than a lazy day where you slap on a pair of salsa stained sweatpants, fall straight into your personally-made indent on the couch, flick on the television, and unhinge your jaw to devour a large, filled-to-the-brim bowl of salty, crispy, golden potato chips. Actually, almost nothing is better than those days. We don’t discourage a tiny bit of laziness here and there. Plus, by being lazy our finances will just keep on the rise, right? Well, not exactly. There are quite a few times where your laziness will cost you hefty amounts of cash. Here is when being lazy is an ill-advised financial choice:

Skipping Medical Appointments

Not only is this a bad idea for your health, this is going to be incredibly costly in the future. Say a quick checkup to the dentist was all you needed to get a cavity filled. Missing one appointment may lead to two then three, and before you can say, “Ow! My tooth hurts” you are spending thousands of dollars of major dental work. Yes, medical appointments can seem like an annoying inconvenience at the time, but the better your health, the better your savings account looks.

Ordering Gifts Last Minute

Oh no! Cousin Abigail’s birthday is tomorrow and you don’t have a gift! It’s fairly easy to think about a friend or family’s birthday gift a few weeks in advance only to let it slip your mind until the 24 hours before the party starts. That is when the slackers rush to the closest online retailer and pay extra for one day shipping. With more preparation, you can find a nifty gift at a good bargain.

Not Taking Advantage of Coupons

The Marketing Association’s Coupon Council reports that the average family could save up to $1,000 if they would take advantage of coupons. Grocery prices are noted to be rising, and all it would take is 20 uninterrupted quality minutes of coupon clipping to stop all the wasted free money you have been throwing away with the magazines and newspapers. It doesn’t even need to be newspapers. Sign up for emails and newsletters from your favorite companies and you’ll be destined to come across a few useful suckers in one of them.

Waiting For Parking Tickets to Come to You

Parking tickets are a serious matter. They are not like the boogeyman that lived in your closest when you were a child. Ignoring them won’t make them go away. You made a mistake. It won’t happen again. That doesn’t mean you don’t have to pay the consequences this time around. Not paying a parking ticket on time will first double the fee, then triple the fee, then creates a possibility of having your car be towed. When you’re in the situation of paying hundreds of dollars, you start to wish that you just paid it when it was $25.

Eating Pre Made Food

Sure, buying a pre-made meal is far easier than going home, scavenging your fridge, and cooking a meal from scratch after a long, tiring day at work. After several weekly excuses to not cook the food you have in your house, you will soon be chucking out your money along with the garbage. The National Resources Defense Council states that 40% of food in the United States gets thrown away every year. That means Americans are wasting 165 billion dollars in perfectly good food. To help in your own cooking endeavors, do different steps of the cooking process day by day. If the meal involves vegetables, chop them up two days before to lessen up the process the day you plan to cook it.

For more reasons why being lazy is costing you a pretty penny, you can read the full Go Banking Rates article.


What to do Directly after Identity Theft

August 13th, 2015 | Posted by admin in Security - (0 Comments)

One day you could be financially stable, and the next day you are coming home from vacation with numerous amounts of messages from your financial institution and a large stack of unauthorized transactions. Maybe one day you are surprised when your card declines while you are purchasing a cup of coffee and while a couple of phone calls you find out your checking account has been wiped out. There are several ways to find out you have become a victim of fraud or identity theft. Over 1 billion records were reported compromised alone, with several ways of acquiring a victim’s information. What matters more than your account being hacked, is how to now deal with it after it has happened. Here are the suggested steps you can take:

Step 1: Immediately shut down the account that has been hacked

Once you find out that your card has been used with permission even once, it’s a safe bet that the thief will not politely stop once and return your card to you. You should contact Align, or whoever your financial institution is as soon as you’re able and close down your account. The faster the shutdown, the lesser the damage caused.

Step 2: Look through previous bank and credit card statements

But was this the first time? Go through your previous three to four statements and scan the documents for any other previous transactions that may have not been from you. Your information may have been stolen months ago and going on unnoticed to you for some time until this first noticeable deduction. If you have multiple accounts, the hacker may have gotten the information for all of them. Look through each account no matter how infrequent. Contact your financial institution and close every account that the thief dove into.

Step 3: Review credit reports

Next step is to request copies of your credit report from all three credit reporting agencies. Read through your reports and see if there are any unwarranted accounts attached. Please note you are allowed one free credit report from each bureau every year.

Step 4: Contact Federal Trade Commission and File Report

This step should be approached cautiously. This step should ONLY be acted upon if you could swear under oath that you truly believe that your identity has been stolen. If only one single account has been compromised and it counts as credit card fraud and not identity theft, then do not file a report. File a report at FTCComplaintAssistant.gov or by calling 1-877-ID-THEFT (438-4338).

Step 5: Notify Police Department

Doing this step isn’t to have cop cars blazing, intently investigating the crime until the culprit is behind bars by the end of the week. This is to have written, printed proof that you have been actively addressing the problem of your identity theft. If the theft happens to be local then you are in luck and they can help greatly in the crime, but if it is overseas or stolen from online, it’s less fortunate and simply contacting them will help.

Step 6: Place Fraud Alert

It’s time to contact those credit agencies again because it is time to place a fraud alert on your account. It will stay on your account for 90 days. Any business or institution that brings up your account will be notified of the alert. It brings a more cautious eye to creditors when checking any identity of someone opening or inquiring about an account in your name. For people with actual proof of theft, the alert will last seven years. For a more safeguarded approach you start a credit freeze so credit report access is completely cut off. Beware though; this will make it harder for you to apply for loans or credit card in the future.

Step 7: Open New Financial Accounts

Contact your financial institution to discuss how to go about the matter. For your guaranteed safety you may want to close and then reopen all of your accounts. While it isn’t ideal, it is the safest option.

Step 8: Keep Cautious In the Future

Read up on our tips on our Security Page that deal with avoiding identity theft in the future. They go over how to creating stronger passwords, why you shouldn’t carry around your social security number in your wallet, and how to safely act when using the ATM, along with many more precautious tips and examples.

For more steps on how to protect you identity after identity theft has taken place, you can read the full US News & World Report article.



It’s an emotional time right now. Your little cherub is heading to school. It doesn’t matter if it’s their first day in kindergarten or their first day senior year of college, they are your baby and you are going to miss them whether it be for eight hours or eight months. What you won’t miss is the cost of all the books, pencils, rulers or tuition it costs to send your cherub to get them their education. It is reported that the average American family will spend an around $630 on their children from kindergarten to high school. Think that’s bad? Compare it to the $68 billion that will be gathered in college student expenses this year alone. School finances are tough. Luckily you have around a month to do some quick changes to cut costs here and there to have more money for them:

Hold Back On Laundry

Just a minute, you eager beaver. We very much want you to do laundry, so don’t start stinking up the place with your 3 month dirty shirt. What we mean is to not do regular small loads of laundry right when the baskets come in. Instead, let them pile up a tiny bit and then do larger washes. This can help cut your laundry washes in half. Lastly, even with larger washes, cut a third of detergent you are using. Many of us use more detergent than we need.

Swap Don’t Buy

While it’s more familiar to just go to the mall, or Wal-Mart, or online shopping sites to pick up school supplies, you might want to give swapping items a shot. There is an estimated 9 million people around the world that would rather recycle items than throw them away and buy new ones. Try sites like Swap.com and Swap Mamas where you can put up items you don’t need any more and swap with users that have supplies you can use.

Buy in Bulk

Condiments, oils, nuts, canned goods, meat, and vegetables are all items to buy in bulk. This is efficient when saving for cash because buying more food than your family needs and then having it spoil is just a waste. Gather all of the frozen and pantry foods you love in bulk and spread the wealth in reusable containers.

Share Your School Gear

An easy way to cut back on expenses is sharing ALMOST EVERYTHING. Or, at least as much as you can. Clothes, online streaming services, time shares, bulk groceries, store memberships, lawn mowers, snow blowers, magazines, exercise equipment, and luggage bags are all items that if you split with another person, saves cash quick. If it involves a subscription, then cancel one of the two subscriptions and create a plan on how to give the person whose subscription is still intact your share.


For the older kids, go scholarship hunting crazy! Apply to as many that you can that would make sense to your character. For example, you wouldn’t apply for a karate scholarship if you have never taken a karate class. If it involves an essay, write the best essay to your ability. Treat scholarships as seriously as if you were applying for a job. Align has a yearly scholarship for its Members that you may want to look in applying for.

Visit a Doctor Before Getting Sick

Get to the doctor before your nose starts running, your bones start aching, and throat starts hacking. Schedule a checkup after reading this blog. This will help you fight off any impending sicknesses that may try to latch onto during the upcoming year.

Workout at Home

Forget the gym! Didn’t think you’d read that sentence for a blog created to give you smart advice, did you? It’s not just wintertime that should be your excuse not to go to the gym. It should be the entire year. There are enough exercises that you can do in the comfort of your own home that will cost you far less than hundreds of dollars you spend at the gym each year. One last tidbit when working out is to use a water filter instead of spending weekly expenses on water.

Celebrate Food Holidays

Almost every day of the year is a national holiday no matter how obscure the day. When a food holiday comes around, certain stores pertaining to the food may have a special deal or promotion. This could help you get the product for free or at a discount saving you having to pay the full price.

Avoiding Restaurants Where Kids Don’t Eat For Free

You should not have to spend an absurd amount of cash on a kiddie cheeseburger. That’s just being taken advantage of. There are far more restaurants that offer free meals to kids than you may know exist. There may even be several around your area. Start doing research of restaurants and what the cost of kids’ meals are there.

For more tips on ways to save before heading back to school, you can read the full Cheapism article.