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Archive for July, 2008

Picking out appliances

July 31st, 2008 at 10:48 am

We went to the sears store today to pick out the new appliances for the house we are building. By buying and paying for the appliances this weekend, we will get 20% off the price.
We have to watch our customers money also.

8 things that helped me save lots of money!

July 30th, 2008 at 12:31 pm

These are some of the things that helped me save a lot of money.

1. Always pay yourself first!! You work hard for your money and you should be the first one to get paid.

2. Always save at least 10% of your paycheck. When i was a waitress, even if I only made $20 for the day, I saved at least $2 in my little savings box.

3. Read a lot of books and magazines on finances. You will learn a lot. I started with Money magazine and that is how I learned about mutual funds. (we live in the boonies and the library had NO financial books back then)

4. Don't spend a lot of money on yourself to look pretty. Don't become a high maintence woman. I think I have always looked pretty, but I don't have to go to the beauty parlor to get my hair and nails done. I use cold cream on my face and spend about $10 a year on make up. I color my own hair.

5. Save every extra dime that comes in the house. Save extra checks, survey checks, bonus checks, coupon cash-ins, all spare change, etc.

6. Buy a good starter home when you are young and pay it off early. Having no rent or house payment for over 30 years has helped me to live a very full life.

7. Shop around for the best interest rates for your cash and the best low fee mutual funds for your retirement money. Start a roth IRA as soon as you can.

8. Join the $20 challenge on this forum. I am saving more now than I ever was and finding it a lot of fun to do.

Quiet evening!

July 30th, 2008 at 12:20 pm

We had a quiet evening last night. We had planned to sit on the deck right over the creek, but we had a rain shower and everything was wet.
So, we sat outside on the dry back deck with our little Holly.
Dh cooked out on the grill and we had some homegrown corn on the cob.
I figure that we saved $20 by staying home, so I am adding that to my challenge money.
Prev. total $18,875.00
today 20.00
new total $18,895.00

Stock market up, gas prices down!!

July 29th, 2008 at 01:14 pm

It has been a pretty good day today. I stopped at the store to get something for dinner and our favorite ice cream was $2 off, so I bought 2 and saved $4 to add to our challenge. One of my c.d.'s paid its quartly divident today, so that is another $1252 to add to the pot.
Prev. total $18,871.00
today 4.00
new total $18,875.00

40 billion gallons??

July 28th, 2008 at 09:43 am

I turned on the news this morning and the news lady was saying that Americans have used 40 billion gallons of gas LESS than they did last year. Hey that is a lot. I am doing my part. I use to drive to town everyday cause I was bored, now I stay home and use no gas.
Today I filled up and spent $13.90 (that is at $4.18 gallon) That was for the past 11 days. I like to fill up before the tank gets very low.
I had a no use gas day on Saturday and used a $1 off coupon. That is $3 to add to the challenge.
Prev. total $18,868.00
today 3.00
new total $18,871.00

Foreclosures!!

July 27th, 2008 at 11:46 am

Foreclosures!! That is all they are talking about on the news.

When I was 21, I bought my first house. I worked very hard to pay that house off. Back then there were no IRA's and I had never heard of mutual funds. Of course, I was too poor to pay the stock market, so I saved and pay my house off by age 32.

A lot of younger people on this board don't believe in paying your house off early; they believe they should take any extra money they have and invest it. I totally respect their ideas and understand where they are coming from.

However, I just realized why we have been able to live on low salaries all of our married life, NO MORTGAGE!

When dh and I got married 31 years ago, we were making $12,000 a year combined and that was before taxes.

Most people today are paying out close to 1/3 of their paychecks on the mortgage, PMI, taxes and houses insurance.

I can not imagine having to pay out thousands a month for a house payment.
Best of all, I never have to worry about a foreclosure on my home.

I am not trying to change anyone's mind; this is just what works for me!!

What are they thinking of??

July 26th, 2008 at 09:37 am

We have lots of builders in our area, and some of them are sitting on a half dozen homes, spec homes that is. Now my husband loves to build a spec house cause he can build it the way he want to, but right now he is doing custom homes.
I can see building one spec house and it has not sold, but why build another one before you get the first house sold? I guess it was just too easy to borrow that money from the bank.
However, the way we build is to use our OWN money to buy the land and built the house. So, we build one house and we don't start another until it is sold.
So we have NO houses sitting and no financial problems at this time.

As for the challenge, the braves won yesterday and the stock market went up, so that is $2 for the challenge!

Prev. total $18,866.00
today 2.00
new total $18,868.00

A new forum

July 25th, 2008 at 11:44 am

I have mentioned several times that I am on a local forum in my little town. The problem with that, there always seems to be troublemakers.
It is strange that this forum, does not seem to have much of a problem with that.

So yesterday, one of the computer savy gals started a new forum for us locals and it was by invitation only. It is so nice to be among like minded friends on this forum. Not only that, but we try to get together several times a year at both lunches and parties. We had a cookout last month and a 4th of July party.

I have gotten a little behind on my challenge money. The braves won Wednesday night and the stock market went up, so that is $2 more to the challenge.
Prev. total $18,864.00
today 2.00
new total $18,866.00

Working on the books

July 24th, 2008 at 11:23 am

I am going to be working on the books this afternoon, but I wanted to add something to my challenge. I did have a no use gas day on tuesday! so that is $2 that I saved.Someone of the other forum told me that I should not talk about money so much. I think most people just don't like talking about money. So glad I have you guys!

Prev. total $18,862.00
today 2.00
new total $18,864.00

My regular check

July 23rd, 2008 at 01:03 pm

My regular check came in today. I always transfer it right from my checking to my savings account and add it to my challenge money.

I also went furniture shopping today. We really need a new breakfast room set and a couple of new chairs for our bedroom. All the furniture just looks so big to me!! How do short people (with short dogs) get onto those big high beds??

Prev. total $18,311.00
today 551.00
new total $18,862.00

Money in the mail!

July 22nd, 2008 at 09:28 am

I got a check from Pinecone in the mail yesterday for $3. Funny thing is, I also got 2 crisp new one dollars bills in the mail.
They both came from places doing surveys on new cars. So, I did the surveys and will add the cash to my challenge money. Oh and a buck cause the braves finally won a game.
Prev. total $18,305.00
today 6.00
new total $18,311.00

Charging my meals

July 21st, 2008 at 09:36 am

We eat dinner out a lot, almost every night. I have decided to try charging my meals. I noticed that my chase rewards card give me back 3% for home improvements, so we use it a lot at Home Depot. But, it also pays 3% for dining out. Now, I have always hated to charge meals out and have never done it. But I like the idea of the 3% back.
So, I am going to try it for a while and see how it works. I am bringing the bill home with me and putting the cash that I would have paid in an envelope. I will see how this works out.

5 corvette neighborhood !

July 20th, 2008 at 08:57 am

We now live in a subdivision that has 5 corvettes! Not bad for a subdivision with only 15 houses. There are 25 lots in here, but the original owner kept 5 lots around his house, all on the creek.

My neighbor across the street just got himself a black corvette. He has been looking for a while, so I am not sure if it is a new one or not. They all look so much the same. Another neighbor ( a chevy dealer) has a red convertible. Of course, we have red, yellow and tu-tone blue. I think it is catching!!

I did my grocery shopping this morning when things were nice and quiet. I stocked up on items that were on sale, like bacon, diet sprite and toilet paper. According to my receipt, I saved $7 using my advantage card. I also saved $2 for no gas yesterday and I walked a mile. That adds $10 to my challenge money.
The bad news was that my dh's wet saw (for cutting tile) broke after 17 years of use and we had to order another one.

The good news is, I managed to figure out how to do it on line and the company gave me over $100 off the list price and then $30 more for some reason. This wet saw is much cheaper than the first one but still cost us $589. Well, sometimes you have to spend money to make money!!

Prev. total $18,295.00
today 10.00
new total $18,305.00

$90 in interest

July 19th, 2008 at 03:01 pm

A few weeks ago, my bank offered checking accounts paying 3.1% interest. I immediately changed all of my checking and money market accounts over to the new accounts. (I didn't have to close the old accounts and can still use the old checks, so it was pretty painless)

My personal checking account had NEVER paid any interest and my business checking account only paid 1/2 of 1 percent if you had over $5000 in there.

My business account contains other people's money, which I use to pay their bills as my dh builds their homes. At best, this account has earned me $5-10 a month and I have just left the money in the account.

When I checked my balance today, I had been credited $90.28 in interest!! Hey, that is great!! Since it is "new" money to me, I have decided to write myself a check for $90 and deposit it in my savings account.(which is also one of their new checking accounts)

I know that both checking accounts are paying the same interest, but I don't consider the business checking account as "my money" and I like to see my personal savings checking account go UP!!

Prev. total $18,205.00
today 90.00
new total $18,295.00

Me and Money

July 18th, 2008 at 08:37 am

I am a member of a couple of local forums in my town. Once in a while, people will make comments about me having a lot of money.
I just want to straighten them out.

I started work at age 12 and worked full time til I was in my mid 40's. Then i worked part time for several years. I have never made "big" money and neither has my husband. But no matter how much or how little we made, I always saved part of my money.

When I first got married at age 20, I was making $1 an hour. My dh was making $1.25 an hour. I saved enough money that year to put a down payment on a new house. We had very little furniture for years.
My second marriage ( I was 32) and I was working at a small savings and loan making $89 a week. (this was 1977) My new husband was making $4 an hour ($160 a week) We continued to save.

We moved to the mountains in 1984 and lived on our savings for an entire year while my husband built our log house completely by himself. (He lifted every log alone)

I got a job as a waitress making $2.01 an hour plus very poor tips and my husband began building houses for $7.50 an hour. My husband was always busy cause he always charged less than the other really good builders.

But the difference was, we continued to save out of every paycheck and then I began investing in mutual funds.

My husband makes decent money now, but our last two customers told us that he still works too cheaply. We got lucky with our spec houses. They all (six) sold quickly and for a nice profit. We have never spent one dime of the profits, we are saving them for the next spec when building picks back up.

So, you don't have to make a lot of money to have a nice net worth. It is not what you make that counts, it is what you KEEP!!

Pinecone

July 17th, 2008 at 09:46 am

I did a pinecone survey last week. This is the first one I have done at the reduced fee. They went from $5 to $3. However, I will say that I liked the survey better cause it was much, much shorter.
Yesterday the stock market went UP, I stayed home and used no gas and I won two games of mah jong. That is $5 more for the challenge.
Prev. total $18,200.00
today 5.00
new total $18,205.00

Dow back above 11,000

July 16th, 2008 at 01:36 pm

The dow closed back above 11,000 today, up over 200 points. We need some good news this week.
The guy we are building a house for is upset cause he has money in Indymac, the bank that is being closed down.
I am sure he and everyone else, will get their money back because it is fdic insured.
I had a no spend day today and even better, a no use gas yesterday. I pay myself $2 every day I stay home and don't use gas. I won 3 games of mah jong, so I have $5 to add to my challenge money.
Prev. total $18,195.00
today 5.00
new total $18,200.00

Now i know why I watch Jerry springer!!

July 15th, 2008 at 02:06 pm

Now, I know why I watch the Jerry Springer show sometimes. With all the talk of the stock market falling, banks failing, gas prices rising, etc., it is a very depressing thing to turn on the tv. At least on Jerry, I got to see people acting stupid and I am always on the lookout to see if it is anyone I know from here. (They all seem to come from the south)
Well, yesterday, I won 6 games of Mah jong so I will add $6 to my challenge money.
Prev. total $18,189.00
today 6.00
new total $18,195.00

crock pot experiment!!

July 14th, 2008 at 08:26 am

I have one of those devices that tests how much electricity you use. So yesterday, I fixed a roast and potatoes in the crock pot.
I wanted to see how much it would cost to run the crock pot all day. I cooked the roast for about 10 hours and it used 1.4 kilowatts, which here, cost about 14 cents. I found that pretty reasonable!

The braves won 2 games in a row; I had a no spend day yesterday, plus I had a no use gas day. I will add $5 to my challenge money.
Prev. total $18,184.00
today 5.00
new total $18,189.00

$2.02 interest!

July 13th, 2008 at 05:43 am

I opened up a new personal checking account on July 2nd. I never keep a lot of money in my personal checking account because it has never paid any interest.
But, this new account does pay interest, to the tune of 3.1% So, 10 days after I opened the account, the bank paid me $2.02 in interest. Hey, that is $2.02 more than I had!!
I am excited that now my business checking is paying 3.1% interest too. It use to pay me .005% I am going to write myself a check each month and take the interest out and add to my challenge.
Before now, the business account only paid me a few dollars a month. so far, I am up to $72 in interest for the month.
I went to the grocery store yesterday and saved $2 using coupons, so I will add that to my $20 challenge.
Prev. total $18,182.00
today 2.00
new total $18,184.00

No use gas day!!

July 12th, 2008 at 10:01 am

I had a no use gas day on Thursday and the braves won the night before. I wish I could have more no use gas days, but something always seems to come up. Thank goodness the bank and grocery store are only about 5 miles away.
I called about the cost of propane yesterday.
They have a fill your tank special for $2.55 a gallon or a summer sale for $2.65 a gallon. In August the price will go up to $2.75 a gallon.
I think i will go ahead and fill up my 1000 gallon tank now. that will last me all winter. Gosh, I remember the first year we lived here, we heated the entire winter for about $300!

I will add the $3 I saved on gas and the braves win, to my challenge money.
Prev. total $18,179.00
today 3.00
new total $18,182.00

Fat check

July 11th, 2008 at 07:25 am

I got a nice fat check in the mail yesterday. It is from the building supply company that we buy from. I worked out a deal with them a while back, to get a rebate every month. I use to get the checks about 3 times a year but now they are mailed every month. It is a nice way to add to our challenge fund.
Prev. total $17,013.00
today 1,166.00
new total $18,179.00

A good day!

July 10th, 2008 at 10:31 am

WE had a pretty good day yesterday. Dh was able to get the tire fixed, so we will not be buying new tire(s).
I filled out a rebate check from Rite aid, so I should be getting about $10 back from them.
I used a coupon for hair coloring and save 5% using my senior card, for a savings of about $2. The braves won Tuesday night, so that is $3 I can add to my challenge money.
Prev. total $17,010.00
today 3.00
new total $17,013.00

lucky 13!!

$3.00 whopper!!

July 9th, 2008 at 09:27 am

Wow, when did a whopper go to the price of $3.00?? I guess it is the first time I have had a hamburger at Burger King in years.
We were invited over for a bar b que rib dinner last night. I am a very funny eater. I eat like a two year old. I will not eat fruit, vegetables, salads, seafood, bar b que of any kind, ribs, veal,lamb, pork, etc. etc.
So, when i am invited for dinner, I usually take a hamburger with me so they don't have to fix anything special for me.
However, I was shocked at the price.
Yesterday the stock market went up and I won 6 games of Mah jong, so I can add $7 to my challenge money.
Prev. total $17,003.00
today 10.00
new total $17,010.00

cleaned out the envelopes

July 8th, 2008 at 01:52 pm

I cleaned out the envelopes again. I had $200 in the van envelope ( old van is paid for, but I still make payments) and $50 in the aarp envelope. I will add that to my challenge money.
Prev. total $16,753.00
today 250.00
new total $17,003.00

It doesn't take much to make me happy!

July 8th, 2008 at 12:03 pm

That is what my husband told me yesterday when the checks for my new personal checking account.
My business checking paid a small amount of interest (1/2 of one percent) but I have never had a personal account that paid any interest.
My bank began offering checking accounts paying 3.14 % interest and guaranteed for a whole year.
Now, I don't keep much money in this account; i just let the money sit in the envelopes. Now that I am making interest, I will put the money in this checking account and keep track of it on paper.
I had almost $900 in my "heating" fund and another thousand or so in the property tax and insurance fund.
That money is sitting now in my new personal checking account. Making me a little more money!!

Grrrrr

July 8th, 2008 at 07:39 am

Our car "told" us last night that we have low tire pressure. Sure enough, dh checked it and there is a nail in the tire. This car only has 2500 miles on it and he does not think these are the kind of tires that can be fixed (plugged) He is thinking that we will need a whole new set of tires. These corvette tires are very expensive, about $2000 for a new set of tires. I hope something else can be done. These are tires that cannot go flat, that is why the car has no spare. Oh well, at least we have the money!!

The good news for the day, I found a quarter and 2 pennies at the store today. So, 27 cents towards the tires!!

Bridge day!!

July 7th, 2008 at 09:20 am

Today is bridge day at my house, so i will not be spending any money at all. I did get a good deal on some meat at the grocery store yesterday, so i saved $4 there to add to my challenge money.
Prev. total $16,749.00
today 4.00
new total $16,753.00

Two party weekend!!

July 6th, 2008 at 09:05 am

I was thinking about the two parties I went to this weekend.
One was a 4th of July party with fireworks and grilling and the other one was "christmas in July) (We all brought gifts and money for the local humane society.)

The first party, everyone wore shorts and we all pigged out on food. I would say about 1/2 the people there earn more than my husband and 1/2 earn less.

Last night's party was much more formal. Everyone at that party earns more than my husband and lives in 1/2 million dollar houses. (We do too, but my husband is a builder, so that helps, plus my house is paid for)

All of the women were so dressed up. They all had their hair done, their names done, etc. They all wore fancy sandals with their toenails painted. I have not painted my toenails since I was about 10. I am sure they all had pedicures too!!

Two of the people there had just had face lifts this year.

I really did not fit in there cause I have never had my nails, toes or hair done and I just wore jeans and a black shirt!

Guess which party was the most fun??

Great party last night!!

July 5th, 2008 at 08:52 am

We went to a great fourth of July party last night. It consisted of all the people that we have met over a local forum. None of us knew each other a few years ago!!
We had hamburgers and hot dogs and each of us brought a covered dish. The host provided us with a lot of really nice fireworks.
Yesterday, I played mah jong and won 6 games. That is $6 I will add to my challange money.
Prev. total $16,743.00
today 6.00
new total $16,749.00


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