Life Hacks http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/5/all en-US 6 Sibling Discounts That Can Save You Big http://www.wisebread.com/6-sibling-discounts-that-can-save-you-big <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-sibling-discounts-that-can-save-you-big" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/kids_silly_faces_000015279016.jpg" alt="Sibling kids with discounts that can save you big" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>As a father of three, I can tell you that raising children is one of the toughest, but most rewarding things you'll ever do. But let's be completely honest &mdash; raising a child is expensive. And raising more than one child is <em>really</em> expensive. Raising three or more? Forget about it.</p> <p>But if you do have more than one child, you may have some financial relief available in the form of sibling discounts. Here are six to be aware of.</p> <h2>1. Orthodontist Discount</h2> <p>My son just recently had braces put on his teeth, and the sticker price of over $5,000 was a tough pill to swallow, especially since my younger daughter is also going to need braces in a couple of years. During the appointment with the business manager, I jokingly asked if I could get a sibling discount on my daughter when it's her turn for braces. Surprisingly, she said, &quot;absolutely, we can give you 15% off her orthodontic treatments when she's ready.&quot; Needless to say, I was very happy I asked.</p> <p>The obvious time to ask about a sibling discount is with twins who need braces at the same time. If you don't fall into that category, but have more than one child getting braces in the span of a couple years, be sure to ask right before the second child gets them put on. This technique may also apply to other elective medical procedures, such as acne treatment lasers, and so forth.</p> <h2>2. Summer Camp</h2> <p>My wife and I spend a good chunk of our summer vacation driving our kids to various camps. A few years ago I started inquiring about sibling discounts, and I was pleasantly surprised to find that almost all of them offer something. The size of the discount varies depending on the length of the camp, and whether it's of the overnight variety or not. From my experience, you stand a great chance of getting a 10%-25% discount simply by asking.</p> <h2>3. College Tuition</h2> <p>It you plan on having at least two kids enrolled in college simultaneously, I hope you take advantage of a 529 college savings plan. You should also be aware of college tuition discounts that many institutions offer. George Washington University famously offers a 50% tuition grant for the second student attending at the same time. Many other universities also offer generous sibling discounts. These include Seton Hall, Gonzaga, and Western New England University. Bottom line: Do your research as this could save a big chunk of money, especially with twins or siblings very close in age.</p> <h2>4. Daycare Costs</h2> <p>If you have more than one child in daycare, ask about a sibling discount. While you'll typically have to pay a babysitter more when they watch multiple children, it's not the case at many childcare facilities. Most will offer a sibling discount in the 10%-15% range. If your children are not in &quot;full-time&quot; daycare, the discount will often be less, typically in the 6%-8% off range. Be proactive and ask when registering your kids.</p> <h2>5. Lessons and After-School Activities</h2> <p>Consider all of the activities your kids are involved in after the final school bell rings. A few extra-curriculars that jump to mind include music lessons, gymnastics, swimming lessons, and dance class. I recently cashed-in on a sibling discount when my two daughters started piano lessons with a private instructor. The piano teacher gave us the option of a 15% discount for separate lessons or a 40% discount on a group lesson. You'll typically need to inquire about these discounts, as they're usually not advertised.</p> <h2>6. Tutoring or Coaching</h2> <p>If you have kids involved in any type of tutoring or special coaching, you'll also want to investigate if sibling discounts are applicable. Whether it's academic tutoring or private athletic coaching, you can often get a percentage taken off when one or more of your kids are involved. Feel free to negotiate a better rate directly with the coach or tutor. Most will happily give you a discount if you have more than one child using their service. Start at 25% off and be prepared to meet in the middle.</p> <p><em>Have you ever cashed in on a sibling discount? If so, how much did you save?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-sibling-discounts-that-can-save-you-big">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-money-saving-tips-every-parent-should-know">15 Money-Saving Tips Every Parent Should Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-financial-lessons-we-learn-from-our-grandparents">10 Financial Lessons We Learn From Our Grandparents</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-important-questions-to-ask-before-adding-to-your-family">5 Important Questions to Ask Before Adding to Your Family</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/becoming-a-one-car-family-5-points-to-consider">Becoming a One-Car Family: 5 Points to Consider</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-child-care-purchases-you-should-never-skimp-on">9 Child Care Purchases You Should Never Skimp On</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Family discounts kids saving money siblings Tue, 05 May 2015 17:00:24 +0000 Kyle James 1408972 at http://www.wisebread.com Ask the Readers: Which Websites Have the Best Designs? http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-which-websites-have-the-best-designs <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/ask-the-readers-which-websites-have-the-best-designs" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/website_designers_000055522386.jpg" alt="Two coworkers admiring best website designs" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Exciting news! Wise Bread is gearing up for a redesign, and we would love to know which websites you think are especially pretty and user-friendly. Since there are a <em>ton</em> of innovative and otherwise spiffy sites out there, please limit your top picks to sites that, like Wise Bread, feature a bunch of articles &mdash; but unlike Wise Bread, they don't have to be all about personal finance!</p> <p><strong>Which websites have the best designs?</strong> What do you like about them? What changes would you like to see in Wise Bread's redesign?</p> <p>Tell us which websites have the best designs and we'll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!</p> <h2>Win 1 of 3 $20 Amazon Gift Cards</h2> <p>We're doing three giveaways &mdash; here's how you can win!</p> <h3>Mandatory Entry:</h3> <ul> <li>Post your answer in the comments below. One commenter will be randomly selected to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!</li> </ul> <h3>For Extra Entries:</h3> <ul> <li>You can tweet about our giveaway for an extra entry. Also, our Facebook fans can get an extra entry too! Use our Rafflecopter widget for your chance to win one of the other two Amazon Gift Cards:</li> </ul> <p><a id="rcwidget_2z004skf" data-template="" data-theme="classic" data-raflid="79857dfa182" rel="nofollow" href="http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/79857dfa182/" class="rcptr">a Rafflecopter giveaway</a> </p> <script src="//widget-prime.rafflecopter.com/launch.js"></script></p> <p>If you're inspired to write a whole blog post OR you have a photo on flickr to share, please link to it in the comments or tweet it.</p> <h4>Giveaway Rules:</h4> <ul> <li>Contest ends Monday, May 11th at 11:59 p.m. Pacific. Winners will be announced after May 11th on the original post. Winners will also be contacted via email.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>You can enter all three drawings &mdash; once by leaving a comment, once by liking our Facebook update, and once by tweeting.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered, or associated with Facebook.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>You must be 18 and US resident to enter. Void where prohibited.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Good Luck!</strong>&nbsp;</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-blog-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Tell us which websites have the best designs and we&#039;ll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card! </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-which-websites-have-the-best-designs">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/book-review-how-to-be-a-geek-goddess-win-a-copy">Book Review: How to Be a Geek Goddess (Win a Copy!)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-how-did-you-spend-your-first-paycheck">Ask the Readers: How Did You Spend Your First Paycheck?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-who-are-your-favorite-personal-finance-gurus">Ask The Readers: Who Are Your Favorite Personal Finance Gurus?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-if-you-could-have-one-wish-chance-to-win-20">Ask the Readers: If You Could Have One Wish (Chance to win $20!)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-can-someone-be-too-wealthy-chance-to-win">Ask the Readers: Can Someone Be &quot;Too&quot; Wealthy? (Chance to win!)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Giveaways Technology Ask the Readers website design Tue, 05 May 2015 15:00:23 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1410072 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Overlooked Ways to Avoid a Speeding Ticket http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-overlooked-ways-to-avoid-a-speeding-ticket <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-overlooked-ways-to-avoid-a-speeding-ticket" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_speeding_ticket_000046948752.jpg" alt="Woman learning overlooked ways to avoid a speeding ticket" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some great articles on overlooked ways to avoid a speeding ticket, creative beer pairings to try, and a guide to online coupon codes.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.moneytalksnews.com/slideshows/8-overlooked-ways-avoid-speeding-ticket/">8 Overlooked Ways to Avoid a Speeding Ticket</a> &mdash; Avoid driving in the fast lane. It's easier for officers hiding the median to catch you if you're in the lane closest to them. [Money Talks News]</p> <p><a href="http://www.dumblittleman.com/2015/05/5-creative-contemporary-beer-pairings.html">5 Creative Contemporary Beer Pairings</a> &mdash; Have a lobster roll to compliment your amber and reds. [Dumb Little Man]</p> <p><a href="http://www.csmonitor.com/Business/Saving-Money/2015/0427/Online-coupon-codes-the-ultimate-guide">Online coupon codes: the ultimate guide</a> &mdash; Here is everything you need to know about online couponing! [The Monitor]</p> <p><a href="http://www.adaringadventure.com/guest-posts/4-taboo-myths-of-self-development">4 Taboo Myths Of Self Development</a> &mdash; It's important to acknowledge and work through your negative emotions &mdash; the push to &quot;just be happy&quot; can make that more difficult. [A Daring Adventure]</p> <p><a href="http://blog.highperformancelifestyle.net/exercise-daily-routine/">5 Steps To (Finally) Make Exercise Part of Your Daily Routine</a> &mdash; If you don't have time for a longer exercise session, break it up into smaller chunks of 10-15 minutes. [High Performance Lifestyle]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="https://getoutofdebt.org/88480/3-renter-gotchas">3 Renter Gotchas</a> &mdash; Identity theft is the most common rental scam, probably because it's so easy to pull off. [Get Out of Debt Guy]</p> <p><a href="http://www.shebudgets.com/lifestyle/5-apps-can-use-boost-productivity/57352">5 Apps You Can Use to Boost Your Productivity</a> &mdash; Use RescueTime to track your Internet usage. [SheBudgets]</p> <p><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Jillian-Harris-From-Bachelorette-Shares-Travel-Tips-37078504">Let &quot;Travel Addict&quot; Jillian Harris Help You Plan Your Next Vacation</a> &ndash; Visiting Maui? Former Bachelorette Jillian Harris recommends the coconut cream pie from Leoda's Kitchen and Pie Shop. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://timemanagementninja.com/2015/05/3-simple-tips-that-improve-your-e-mail-productivity/">3 Simple Tips That Improve Your E-mail Productivity</a> &mdash; Treat your inbox like a regular mailbox &mdash; only check it two to three times a day. [Time Management Ninja]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/homework-secrets-how-to-get-it-done-with-minimal-stress">Homework Secrets: How to Get it Done with Minimal Stress</a> &mdash; If your child has a hard time focusing, playing ambient music can help. [Parenting Squad]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amy-lu">Amy Lu</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-overlooked-ways-to-avoid-a-speeding-ticket">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-cheap-ways-to-lower-your-blood-sugar">13 Natural and Easy Ways to Lower Your Blood Sugar</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-deal-when-your-spouse-is-suffering-from-burnout">How to Deal When Your Spouse is Suffering From Burnout</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-retailers-where-you-can-negotiate-a-lower-price">11 Retailers Where You Can Negotiate a Lower Price</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/51-uses-for-coca-cola-the-ultimate-list">51 Uses for Coca-Cola – the Ultimate List</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-new-ways-to-use-your-microwave">7 New Ways to Use Your Microwave</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks best money tips speeding ticket Mon, 04 May 2015 19:00:25 +0000 Amy Lu 1409886 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Deal When Your Spouse is Suffering From Burnout http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-deal-when-your-spouse-is-suffering-from-burnout <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-deal-when-your-spouse-is-suffering-from-burnout" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/happy_couple_sunset_000041204266.jpg" alt="Woman and man who is suffering from burnout" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Burnout can be brutal. It kills your productivity, it makes you feel stressed all the time, it leaves you exhausted and detached, and it can make you question whether you have ever or will ever do anything of value.</p> <p>It's bad enough to find yourself in such a state, but it can be as bad or worse to find someone you love there. When that person is your spouse, someone you love deeply and with whom you are walking through life, it can cause all sorts of difficult feelings.</p> <p>You don't have to get stuck there, though. There are good ways to support yourself and your spouse when he or she is walking through a season of burnout.</p> <h2>1. Recognize It</h2> <p>Burnout can be misdiagnosed as depression (which often goes alongside it), anxiety, and other disorders. At its most basic, burnout is <a href="https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/high-octane-women/201311/the-tell-tale-signs-burnout-do-you-have-them">a state of chronic stress</a> that, over time, leads to a whole host of other symptoms. Depression and anxiety can be part of those, but stress is at the core in burnout.</p> <p>Learn to recognize when your spouse is stressed. Different people respond differently to stressors, but you are in a position to know how your spouse responds. When you see this sort of stress over a period of time, tell your spouse what you have observed. If you can't do that, recognize that burnout may be on the horizon.</p> <h2>2. Don't Panic</h2> <p>Having someone close to you experience burnout can be terrifying. When they lose productivity, when it takes them forever to do something they once did easily, like write an e-mail or empty the dishwasher, it's easy to wonder if that person you love will ever come back, or if this is your new normal.</p> <p>When these feelings come, remind yourself that they are normal but that you don't need to panic. Burnout is serious, but it is a condition that rest and wise counsel can do much to alleviate. It may take a while, but your spouse will return. Hopefully, they will be happier and healthier on the other side of burnout, because they will have learned to care for themselves better.</p> <h2>3. Get Support</h2> <p>Walking through a spouse's burnout isn't easy, and you will need people to walk alongside you as you offer support, if you want your marriage to survive and grow. These can be friends, relatives, or even mental health professionals. In fact, you might be best served by getting support from all three.</p> <p>You will have a lot to talk about when it comes to your spouse's burnout, and it's important that you don't put too much of that on any one person, or that you ask friends for solutions or suggestions that only counselors can give. A counselor can help you figure out what you can and cannot offer your spouse during this time, what you need to do to take care of yourself, and whether there's anything you can change in your marriage that might help your spouse. Friends and family can help you implement these ideas, and can listen to your feelings.</p> <p>Occasionally, it may be appropriate for you to seek help for your spouse, too. If he or she is so burnt out that they can't even search for a counselor or figure out what the next step is, you may need to do that for them. In the end, though, it will help your spouse to seek out their own solutions, so do as little as possible in their name. Instead, encourage them to act on their own.</p> <h2>4. Encourage Them in Positive Directions</h2> <p>What your spouse needs will depend a lot on the details of their burnout. As their spouse, you can encourage them to move toward what they need. Maybe an extended vacation would help them get the rest they need, or spending more time with friends would help them leave their stress at work. Maybe they need to join a gym or a bowling league or a reading group.</p> <p>Whatever they need, you can encourage them in that direction. That doesn't mean you sign them up for things you think might be helpful, but that you listen to them (and to their therapist, if that is appropriate) and help them remember to take steps toward rest and relaxation rather than deeper into stress.</p> <h2>5. Don't Take Responsibility</h2> <p>Even though you want to do as much as you can to help your spouse, you need to remember that neither their descent into burnout nor their recovery depends on you. You are there to be a companion, to help them walk this hard road and to walk alongside them as appropriate, but it's not your fault. They aren't burnt out because of you and their recovery isn't in your hands, either.</p> <p>If you are doing well, it will be easy to try to drag your burnt out spouse up by their bootstraps to join you. This is taking too much on yourself, though. In the end, they need to walk through this dark place and come out of it on their own. If you do it for them, they may get better but they won't really recover. The truth is, they got themselves into this place and they need to get themselves out. Being their companion will help, but being their savior will not.</p> <h2>6. Take Care of Yourself</h2> <p>Having a spouse with burnout is hard. It's stressful for you and that takes its toll. If you are not careful to alleviate that stress, you risk falling into burnout or depression yourself. So figure out what you need to do to take care of you and then do those things, which may include exercising more, sleeping a little more, or spending intentional time with your friends.</p> <p>Going through a time where your spouse is burnt out can actually strengthen your marriage. In the end, you will both be stronger people and you will know that your relationship can survive hard things. Work toward this and that time of burnout doesn't have to be wasted time.</p> <p><em>Has your spouse suffered burnout? What helped you deal?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-deal-when-your-spouse-is-suffering-from-burnout">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-be-happy-and-married-24-tips-from-a-24-year-old-marriage">How to Be Happy and Married: 24 Tips from a 24-Year-Old Marriage</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-relationship-rules-you-should-be-breaking">10 Relationship Rules You Should Be Breaking</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-worst-mistakes-good-spouses-make">5 Worst Mistakes Good Spouses Make</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/spice-up-the-conversation-by-skipping-what-do-you-do">Spice Up the Conversation by Skipping &quot;What Do You Do?&quot;</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/could-a-divorce-improve-your-finances">Could a Divorce Improve Your Finances?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks anxiety burnout marriage relationships stress Mon, 04 May 2015 17:00:23 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1410063 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Important Questions to Ask Before Adding to Your Family http://www.wisebread.com/5-important-questions-to-ask-before-adding-to-your-family <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-important-questions-to-ask-before-adding-to-your-family" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/new_baby_000022503773.jpg" alt="Couple asking important questions before starting a family" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>&quot;Can we even afford one?&quot;</p> <p>This question was the first my husband and I asked ourselves when we had the big baby discussion. Romantic, right? But in reality, finances play an important role in moving from a two-person household to three (or more). So, while a lot of the baby-making process is fun and games, here are some items to consider and situations to plan for before making that jump into parenthood.</p> <h2>1. What Is Your Budget?</h2> <p>Before anything else, we took time to write out our budget in full. After every single last fixed and variable expense was accounted for, we compared that number to our take-home income. You'll find a wide range of figures for how much a <a href="http://www.parenting.com/article/the-cost-of-raising-a-baby">child costs per year</a> ranging from &quot;only your time and love&quot; to $12,000 or more, depending on a number of factors (location, lifestyle, etc.). When we saw what was left over, we got a good idea that adding a child would be doable. We also found areas of our budget that had room to change and free up money for diapers, food, baby gear, and much more. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-dont-actually-need-to-buy-for-your-new-baby-plus-5-you-must?ref=seealso">10 Things You Don't Actually Need to Buy For Your New Baby</a>)</p> <h2>2. Who Will Care for the Baby?</h2> <p>Wrapped up in those yearly costs for taking care of your child is daycare. You'll want to take many personal and practical factors into consideration when making the choice. We decided that much of my income would have been sucked up with childcare costs, so I opted to work part-time from home after calculating many scenarios from best to worst case. Some of you might have family willing to help out full or part-time. Others will rely on paid care exclusively.</p> <p>While you're thinking, it's also a good idea to get in touch with your workplace to see how much time off you get after birth, as well as how much of this time is paid versus unpaid. Same goes with your spouse.</p> <h2>3. What Does Insurance Cover?</h2> <p>Health insurance was the next big piece of the pie. How much of my prenatal care would be covered? What about the birth and delivery? And even before all that, what about possible infertility coverage? (We're dealing with this detail the second time around.)</p> <p>We are fortunate to have good insurance that paid for pretty much everything &mdash; ultrasounds (I needed many), blood tests, delivery, and follow-up. Beyond that, you'll be adding a dependent to your coverage, so your monthly premium might go up. Your child will also have well care visits often in the first year. Speak with your HR department or call your insurance company directly to get information on coverage, deductibles, copays, and any other concerns you might have.</p> <h2>4. Do You Have Space?</h2> <p>Take a look around your place. Some of you might be living in three to four bedroom houses. Others, studio apartments. The truth is, you can make most places work with one child using creative solutions from room sharing to compact closet bedrooms. If you don't think you have a good setup or &mdash; alternatively &mdash; would want to move anyway, you'll want to calculate a new rent or mortgage number into your budget to see how it shifts everything.</p> <h2>5. What About Other Stuff?</h2> <p>Beyond baby's first years, the costs can climb. Things like preschool tuition, extracurricular activities, college savings accounts, and even unexpected medical expenses.</p> <p>Our daughter had a medical issue that required major surgery in her second year of life, and no one could have expected or planned for that. Though insurance took care of the heaviest expenses, like a $100,000 hospital bill, we have paid deductibles for countless doctor appointments and follow-ups. (She's doing great now, by the way.) Most situations like these are unusual and likely not to be of concern. At the same time, if your budget or job is shaky, you might want to try and stabilize things before adding another variable to the equation.</p> <p><em>What other questions did you ask before adding to your family?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-marcin">Ashley Marcin</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-important-questions-to-ask-before-adding-to-your-family">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-sibling-discounts-that-can-save-you-big">6 Sibling Discounts That Can Save You Big</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-child-care-purchases-you-should-never-skimp-on">9 Child Care Purchases You Should Never Skimp On</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-money-with-a-dependent-care-tax-credit-and-fsa">Save Money with a Dependent Care Tax Credit and FSA</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/24-tips-for-having-a-baby-without-going-broke">24 Tips for Having a Baby Without Going Broke</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-having-kids-makes-you-more-frugal">8 Ways Having Kids Makes You More Frugal</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Family child care family planning having babies insurance kids Mon, 04 May 2015 15:00:27 +0000 Ashley Marcin 1406710 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Price Match Policies You Should Be Wary Of http://www.wisebread.com/8-price-match-policies-you-should-be-wary-of <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-price-match-policies-you-should-be-wary-of" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couple_shopping_electronics_000022473557.jpg" alt="Couple shopping for electronics and comparing price match options" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Price match policies can vary wildly from retailer to retailer. While most of them are fairly straight forward, there are some whose fine print will leave you scratching your head in confusion. And in the world of bargain shopping, few things are more frustrating than finding a cheaper price from a competing store, only to be denied a price match because you failed to read the fine print.</p> <p>By knowing which price match policies have strange exclusions, or won't price match online pricing, you'll save yourself from some potential headaches and disappointments. Here are eight price match policies to watch out for.</p> <h2>1. Amazon</h2> <p>For a company that claims to strive for the lowest price, the Amazon price match policy leaves a lot to be desired. As a matter of fact, the only thing they'll actually price match are select TVs and cell phones. A few of the online retailers they <em>will</em> price match include Crutchfield.com, Costco.com, Walmart.com, and Dell.com. In order to get your price match, you need to login to your account and click on &quot;Order Details&quot; followed by &quot;Found a lower price?&quot; and follow the instructions.</p> <h2>2. Fry's Electronics</h2> <p>Fry's has a 110% price match policy guaranteeing they'll match the price of any local authorized retailer or authorized Internet competitor. Seems like a fairly straight-forward policy, right? But they've taken heat in recent years for making it very difficult to get an online price match when shopping in-store. Examples includes not price matching Amazon Prime prices or trying to tack on the shipping charges that online retailers would charge.</p> <h2>3. Home Depot</h2> <p>When shopping in-store, Home Depot will match the price of a local competitor plus beat their price by 10%. That sounds great, but the exclusions are pretty formidable and include special orders, volume discounts, open-box merchandise, and online purchases. This means that unfortunately they won't price match Amazon, Lowes.com, and the like.</p> <h2>4. JCPenney</h2> <p>The JCPenney price match policy has some fine print you'll want to be aware of. While they'll happily price match local competitors' current advertised price on identical items, they will <em>not</em> match any online prices. Also, they will not price match any competitor pricing that they consider clearance or sale prices, which is really unfortunate.</p> <h2>5. Kohl's</h2> <p>The Kohl's price match policy leaves a lot to be desired. First of all, they will not price match any online price. But more than that, they require you to bring in a copy of the competitor's ad with the current date printed on it. How many ads actually have the date stamped on them? Not too many. Also, what if you see a lower price in another physical store and not in an actual ad? Will they still match the price if you snap a picture of the item and show it to a Kohl's associate? Unfortunately, their policy does not stipulate, which makes things quite confusing.</p> <h2>6. NewEgg</h2> <p>NewEgg.com has a price match policy named the &quot;Iron Egg Price Guarantee&quot; that claims to match the price of any identical item sold by a major retailer. When shopping on their website, look for the Iron Egg badge next to all products that qualify for a price match, which according to NewEgg is close to 80% of their inventory. You file a price match claim, and if approved, get money back via a NewEgg gift card. Sounds okay, right? But then you look at the fine print of the offer and the things they won't price match. In particular, any &quot;competitor's item that is advertised below NewEgg's actual cost.&quot; But here's the rub; they don't tell you their actual costs! So you make a purchase from them, file a claim, and pray the deal isn't so good that it's below their costs. Because if it is, you'll be denied and stuck paying full price with no recourse.</p> <h2>7. Sears</h2> <p>Sears will happily price match local competitors; just bring in evidence of the lower price and an associate will help you out. So far, so good. Now let's look at their online price match policy as this is where things get really confusing. From their website, &quot;If you find a lower online price on an identical brand and model number currently available from a local competitor's retail store honoring its own online price and the item is currently available for sale and delivery in your area, Sears will match the price of the merchandise.&quot; Huh? So according to that rambling sentence, isn't this just a regular price match? Their policy is so darn confusing that it makes me want to take my business elsewhere.</p> <h2>8. Toys R' Us</h2> <p>Toys R' Us will price match local competitors as well as select online retailers. They'll also give you up to seven days after the date of your purchase to come back for your price match. But they make this list for a couple reasons. First, their policy is only good for in-store purchases. Secondly, from their website, &quot;Competitor shipping charges will be calculated and factored in the cost of online prices.&quot; So if you're trying to get a price match via a lower price on Amazon, Toys R' Us is going to tack on the shipping costs Amazon would charge. But what if you're an Amazon Prime member and don't pay for shipping? It doesn't matter. Toys R' Us is still going to include shipping costs into your &quot;price adjusted&quot; price. Price matcher beware.</p> <p><em>Any price match policies that seem okay (until you read the fine print) that I missed? Let me know!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-price-match-policies-you-should-be-wary-of">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-buy-all-that-stuff-the-police-seize-and-its-cheap">How to Buy All That Stuff the Police Seize. And It&#039;s Cheap.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-stupid-shopping-mistakes-even-smart-people-make">10 Stupid Shopping Mistakes Even Smart People Make</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dealista-tip-how-to-shop-online-safely">How to Shop Online Safely</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/filler-strategies-for-amazon-s-free-super-saver-shipping">Filler Strategies for Amazon’s Free Super Saver Shipping</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-pay-more-guide-to-price-matching-and-cheat-sheet">Don&#039;t Pay More! Guide to Price Matching and Cheat Sheet</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Consumer Affairs Shopping fine print online shopping price matching saving money Fri, 01 May 2015 13:00:27 +0000 Kyle James 1402491 at http://www.wisebread.com The 5 Best Power Banks http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-power-banks <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-5-best-power-banks" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_tablet_phone_000035376192.jpg" alt="Woman happy she used her power bank to recharge her tablet" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>A portable power bank can save your phone when you&rsquo;re down to your last bit of battery. And let&rsquo;s face it, nobody wants to be stranded without their cell phone. Fortunately, power banks are small, affordable, and easy to use, so you won&rsquo;t ever have to panic when your phone or tablet is running low on battery juice ever again. With the small external chargers, you won&rsquo;t ever have to worry about your battery running out in the middle of a call. You can talk to your friends, play games, listen to music, or surf the internet for as long as you want, without having to worry about finding a nearby charging station.</p> <p>In fact, some power banks can charge your smartphone more than four times under one full charge. To get the most from your investment, it&rsquo;s important to choose a power bank that best fits your lifestyle and budget.</p> <h2>What is a Power Bank?</h2> <p>A power bank is a portable battery charger that can recharge your battery whenever you&rsquo;re running low on power. This will make it more convenient to use your phone or tablet whenever you need to, without having to search for an available wall charger. All you need to do is plug your phone into the portable charger and continue on your day. The phone will charge with enough power to get you through your day and you can easily recharge the power bank from any USB port once you get home. These are ideal for when you are traveling, on business, or just to keep in your car or bag for a quick emergency charge. At some point in time, you&rsquo;ll find yourself on low battery power, and will be glad you have the portable power you need.</p> <h2>Top 5 Power Banks</h2> <h3>EasyAcc 10000mAh Brilliant Ultra Slim Dual USB Portable Power Bank External Battery Charger</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00H9BEC8E/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00H9BEC8E&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=AEKPXOLHVQOT446S"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/EasyAcc%20Classic%2010000mAh%20Power%20Bank.jpg" width="250" height="171" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00H9BEC8E/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00H9BEC8E&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=AEKPXOLHVQOT446S">EasyAcc Brilliant Ultra Slim Dual USB Portable Power Bank</a> is one of the bestselling battery chargers in the world. With dual USB output, you can simultaneously charge two devices to save even more time. While it is compact, ultra slim, and super portable, it is powered with an impressive 10000mAh rechargeable power capacity (USB Output 1: 5V 2.1A, USB Output 2: 5V 1.5A), providing enough power for 5-6 full charges to your iPhone 5 or 2.5-3.5 charges for Samsung Galaxy S4, S3. The reliable charger has a matte surface, is fingerprint-resistant, and available in black and orange, black and green, black and purple, black and silver, white and green, white and orange, and white and purple, so you can find the perfect colorful power bank to express your style.</p> <p>You can use it everyday, or in emergency situations only, and with standby time of up to six months once fully charged, you won&rsquo;t have to worry about it losing power anytime soon. Your purchase will include an EasyAcc power bank, a Micro USB Charging Cable (20 CM), a Micro USB Charging Cable (60 CM), and a User Manual.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00H9BEC8E/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00H9BEC8E&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=AEKPXOLHVQOT446S"><em>Currently $21.49 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>RAVPower Luster 3000mAh Mini Portable Charger (2nd Gen External Power Bank With iSmart Technology)</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00MNAWMHE/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00MNAWMHE&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=DRLM4ZOB3336AF5B"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/RAVPower%20Luster%203000mAh%20Mini%20Portable%20Charger%20.jpg" width="250" height="248" align="right" alt="" /></a>As the #1 Best Seller of all Amazon&rsquo;s MP3 battery packs, the lipstick-shaped, lightweight <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00MNAWMHE/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00MNAWMHE&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=DRLM4ZOB3336AF5B">RAVPower Luster Mini Portable Charger</a> can fit into any pocket or bag. With 3000 mAh of juice (Input: DC 5V / 1A Output: DC 5V / 1A), it&rsquo;s powerful enough to provide nine hours of additional talk time or 90 hours of music playback from your cell phone. Equipped with iSmart technology to charge your device smarter and faster than standard USB, it automatically detects and delivers the optimal charging current for the fastest charge possible. The external power bank provides enough power for a full charge for iPhone 6, 5, 4, and most smartphones.</p> <p>Built with premium grade A+ battery cells, you can enjoy over 500 recharge cycles with this mini charger. Available in black, silver, gold, pink, and blue, and no larger than a pack of mints, you can choose what best suits your personal style. Your purchase will include a RAVPower power bank, a USB Charging Cable, and a User Manual.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00MNAWMHE/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00MNAWMHE&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=DRLM4ZOB3336AF5B"><em>Currently $12.99 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Anker&reg; 2nd Gen Astro E3 Ultra Compact 10000mAh Portable Charger External Battery Power Bank With PowerIQ Technology</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009USAJCC/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B009USAJCC&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=VIWVJUTNDIDVT2WU"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/Anker%C2%AE%202nd%20Gen%20Astro%20E3%20Ultra%20Compact%2010000mAh%20Portable%20Charger.jpg" width="250" height="235" align="right" alt="" /></a>As the #1 Best Seller of all Amazon&rsquo;s portable power banks, the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009USAJCC/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B009USAJCC&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=VIWVJUTNDIDVT2WU">Anker 2nd Gen Astro E3 Ultra Compact Portable Charger</a> has the highest average review rating of any charging brand, resulting in 10 million+ satisfied customers. One in three chargers sold on Amazon is an Anker charger, making them Amazon&rsquo;s #1 charging brand. With 10000 mAh of juice, this ultra compact portable charger can charge your phone, tablet, and more, whenever you need it most. It charges most tablets almost once, the Galaxy S5 two and a half times, the iPhone 5s four and a half times and other smartphones multiple times, all on just one charge of the portable power bank. Available in black and white, this reliable compact charger has the size and feel of a smartphone. It is made of industry grade materials, premium circuitry and a 92% efficient battery cell (up to 10% above the industry average).</p> <p>It is unobtrusive, lightweight, and equipped with PowerIQ technology, which detects your device to deliver the fastest charge possible. Your purchase will include the Anker Astro E3 Portable Charger External Battery Power Bank, Micro USB cable, travel pouch, welcome guide, and their world famous 18-month warranty.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009USAJCC/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B009USAJCC&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=VIWVJUTNDIDVT2WU"><em>Currently $22.99 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>ZILU Smart Battery 13000mAh Backup Power Bank</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00K64WR9C/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00K64WR9C&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=DHWW7IP5NEWSG3GN"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/ZILU%20Smart%20Battery%2013000mAh%20Portable%20Charger%20.jpg" width="250" height="163" align="right" alt="" /></a>ZILU is the trusted brand that created the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00K64WR9C/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00K64WR9C&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=DHWW7IP5NEWSG3GN">ZILU Smart Battery</a> and the only supplier on Amazon that offers 1,000 Cycles (double the market standard). Made of high quality Samsung 18650 Lithium Lion Battery Cells, the ZILU smart battery is durable, reliable, and small enough to fit in your pocket or bag, but powerful enough to contain 13000mAh energy. It is compatible with most of the smartphones and tablets on the market and equipped with SmartSwitch technology, allowing it to charge any of your mobile devices in the correct way. With 3A output and 2A input, the charging speed is 50% faster than most battery packs on the market and boasts up to 93% energy conversion rate.</p> <p>The small, compact charger offers nine levels of protection and passed the most strict safety certification, UL 1624. With two outlets, it can simultaneously charge two devices at the same time. It can charge the iPhone eight times, Samsung Galaxy S5 four times, Galaxy Note III nearly three imes, and iPad more than one time. It is also equipped with a flashlight function for emergency situations and four LED lights to show the battery capacity. Your purchase will also include an impressive 2-Year Limited Warranty.</p> <p><em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00K64WR9C/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00K64WR9C&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=DHWW7IP5NEWSG3GN">Currently $27.90 on Amazon</a></em></p> <h3>K2R-803 Cell Phone Portable Charger With Flashlight</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00LADNVB6/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00LADNVB6&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=QGOSHEJIIGCT5AM6"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/K2R-803%20Cell%20Phone%20Portable%20Charger.jpg" width="250" height="185" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00LADNVB6/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00LADNVB6&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=QGOSHEJIIGCT5AM6">K2R-803 Cell Phone Portable Charger</a>, or &ldquo;As Seen On TV&rdquo; item, really does hold up to its word and can quickly charge your iPhone, iPad, Samsung, smartphones, and tablets. It is beautiful, lightweight, and holds an incredible 7,800mAh, enough to fully charge your iPhone Battery almost four times. Only top grade Lithium Ion Battery Cells are used and multiple levels of protection are built into the charger to keep your phone battery healthy. You can also rely on the intelligent K2R monitoring system with overcharge, over-discharge, over-current, over-voltage, short-circuit and over-load safety protections. With two USB ports, you can simultaneously charge two devices to save even more time.</p> <p>The charger is equipped with a flashlight for emergency situations, as well as four LED light indicators to show the remaining charge. Your purchase includes a K2R-803 Portable Charger, a user manual, an Intelligent LED Micro USB Cable, an Intelligent LED iPhone 5 Lightning USB Cable (the LED on the cables displays a red light when the device is charging and a blue light once it is charged), and an exclusive Battery Boost Bonus Guide Ebook. You can take comfort in the 100% customer satisfaction guarantee and incredible 3-year warranty.</p> <p><em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00LADNVB6/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00LADNVB6&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=QGOSHEJIIGCT5AM6">Currently $29.99 on Amazon</a></em></p> <p>And those are our recommendations for the best power banks. As always, be sure to check <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/buying-calendar">Wise Bread's Buying Calendar</a> to learn when and how to buy just about anything!</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-power-banks">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-7"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-smartphones">The 5 Best Smartphones</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-bluetooth-speakers">The 5 Best Bluetooth Speakers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/longtime-mac-users-punished-for-loyalty">Longtime Mac Users Punished for Loyalty</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-computer-keyboards">The 5 Best Computer Keyboards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-blu-ray-players">The 5 Best Blu-ray Players</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping Technology electronics portable chargers power banks product reviews Fri, 01 May 2015 09:00:25 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1386471 at http://www.wisebread.com 11 Retailers Where You Can Negotiate a Lower Price http://www.wisebread.com/11-retailers-where-you-can-negotiate-a-lower-price <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/11-retailers-where-you-can-negotiate-a-lower-price" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/retail_employee_000026834633.jpg" alt="Retail employee at store where prices are negotiable" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>In many parts of the world, haggling is a way of life. You would never think of paying the sticker price, and to be honest, the retailer would be offended if you didn't try to negotiate.</p> <p>In America, things are a little different. We have become used to just accepting that the price we see is the price we pay, with very few exceptions. Yes, we'll negotiate on a home or car, but after that, we tend to avoid haggling. However, several major retail stores will actually take part in price negotiations, and will usually give you a better deal than the one you were expecting. You just have to know how to play the game. And it goes without saying &mdash; be polite and courteous the whole time. Demanding a discount won't get you anywhere.</p> <h2>1. Best Buy</h2> <p>Let's start with the one most people have asked me about. &quot;Can you really haggle at Best Buy?&quot; Yes, you absolutely can, although the results will vary from store to store.</p> <p>First, you want to go shopping towards the end of the month, between the 29th and the 31st. Like most retail stores, Best Buy gives its floor managers sales goals, and they really want to hit them. By going in when they are down to the wire, you have more haggling power.</p> <p>Next, follow a few simple rules and you will get the bargain you want.</p> <ul> <li>You will get better discounts on high-end items. A huge $2500 TV or home theater system has a serious markup, and therefore, more wiggle room. If you go big, start negotiating.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Ask for freebies to be thrown in. If you're buying a computer, ask for a pack of blank DVDs. If you get a laptop, ask for a free bag or wireless mouse.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Focus on floor models and open box items. I've had great success buying floor models at massive discounts. The great thing is, you can buy the Geek Squad protection on it, and they'll replace it for a brand new item if they're unable to repair it. Open-box items are also easy to haggle on, and 20%-25% off is fair. And if the packaging on a new item is damaged, ask for a discount. They will often give you 10% off.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Bundle and save. Buying a monitor and a keyboard? Ask for a discount on both. The same goes for a TV and Blu-ray player, or a bunch of DVDs. If you are buying multiples, the store manager has some discretion to give you a deal.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Remember price matching. If you see a lower price anywhere, Best Buy will match it. So before you buy, search for the item on your smartphone and find the lowest price online or locally. Then watch the salesperson crumble.</li> </ul> <h2>2 &amp; 3. Home Depot and Lowes</h2> <p>The top two big box DIY stores are both susceptible&nbsp;to the art of negotiation. Just ask Kyle James, a former Home Depot worker whose own post at <a href="http://www.rather-be-shopping.com/blog/2014/09/08/how-to-negotiate-at-major-retailers/">Rather Be Shopping</a> is full of great tips for negotiating at that store and several others on this list. Both Home Depot and Lowes have&nbsp;very similar policies when it comes to negotiating, and the following guidelines apply.</p> <ul> <li>Scratches, dents, and dings give you great haggling power. On big appliances, most customers want their new items to be pristine. They cost a lot of money, they should be perfect. But who cares about minor dings? After a few months in the house with kids and pets, those dings will soon appear anyway. Seek out scratched and dented items when you want a new appliance, and start haggling. It's damaged goods, and the managers have wiggle room. Even torn packaging can get you a discount.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Get deals on poor quality lumber, roll ends, and off cuts. If you're building a fence and don't mind a few imperfect pickets or posts, grab them from the rack. Then, talk to a store manager and ask for a discount. You should easily get one, since the lumber they can't sell gets junked, anyway. You can also get great deals on roll-ends for carpet and linoleum, as well as off-cut wood and other materials.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Floor models are also great starting points for negotiations. These days, you can get all of your major appliances from the hardware store, and they all have floor models that have been poked, prodded, and generally used and abused by potential customers. However, they work just fine, most of them have never even been plugged in. Ask for a floor model, at a 10%-15% discount. If they are not ready to sell the floor models yet, ask when they are. You may even be able to put one on hold, if you are particularly charming.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Take advantage of stocking errors. This doesn't always work, but if you see something you want and the price looks too good to be true, it could be a product that has been placed in the wrong section. If it's a one off, forget it. But if the whole rack is marked at $10, instead of $20, then it is a legitimate angle for a discount. They priced it incorrectly, it's their mistake, and their loss. This happens a lot at hardware stores, especially in some of the aisles with very similar products at vastly different prices.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Price match. This is always a good option. Now, Home Depot and Lowes seem to be a little tougher on this than other stores, and will require evidence of a product in stock locally for a lower price. Online price matching will be way more difficult to achieve.</li> </ul> <h2>4 &amp; 5. Sam's Club and Costco</h2> <p>Wherever you do your bulk buying, there are some strategies you can employ that can help you get better prices. Remember, just because you're already getting a discount, it doesn't mean the prices cannot go lower. Your membership fees and the bulk buying formula are the reason the prices are low. The stores are getting this stuff cheap, they make great profits, and you can negotiate.</p> <ul> <li>Know the store layouts. Clark Howard, a consumer expert, says that the best deals in both of these stores are on aisles five, six, and seven. Knowing this in advance, you can head over to these areas and talk to the manager about buying a lot of these goods for a discount.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Look for items going off that day. Whether it's fruit, meat, bread, cakes, or vegetables, the manager will be very pliable towards the end of the day. They'd rather get a sale from you than throw it all in the dumpster.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Check the prices. For instance, any items ending in .97 at Costco are either <a href="http://www.rather-be-shopping.com/blog/2013/09/24/retailers-big-secret-crack-the-price-tag-code/">discounted or on clearance</a>, even if they don't advertise it. That means the store wants them gone, and gone quickly. Knowing this can really help you when it comes time to ask for a few bucks extra off.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Tires should never be bought at sticker price. The warehouse stores rely on you thinking that they will have the cheapest prices around. This is a complete fallacy. With your smartphone at hand, bring up the prices of the same tires at places like Discount Tire or Tire Rack.</li> </ul> <h2>6. Furniture Stores</h2> <p>There are big retail chains, and there are local mom-n'-pop businesses. However, they both have one thing in common: They are willing to negotiate on certain items, especially as the <a href="http://www.marketwatch.com/story/guid/dbc03806-309a-11e0-b7f5-072128040cf6?page=2">markup on furniture</a> is so high. How high, you ask? Try 80%. A lot of the stock is bought overseas, shipped in, and marked up to ridiculous amounts. Here are some negotiation strategies you can use.</p> <ul> <li>First, head to the back of the stores, or the clearance sections. You will find some products marked &quot;as is&quot; or &quot;last one.&quot; Well, this is a great place to start haggling. They have discounted the stock because they want it gone, and if you are ready to take it off their hands on that day, you'll be doing them a favor. Don't get greedy, it's already cheap, but drop the price another 20%. If you can, offering cash also helps.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>They know many of their products are not as high-quality as they make out. So, start looking over the pieces like they're used cars. Inspect the joints, the finish, point out the flaws. As you make your case for the poor craftsmanship, you are laying the groundwork for a discount.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Buy more, get more of a discount. If you plan on remodeling the bedrooms, see if you can afford to buy everything at one time. If you're dropping a lot of money, the furniture store may work with you.</li> </ul> <h2>7 &amp; 8. Walmart and Target</h2> <p>You might think that the country's two largest retailers wouldn't let you haggle. Well, this isn't the case. There are times you can haggle, if you know what you're doing.</p> <ul> <li>Like other stores on this list, Walmart and Target will let you haggle on items that are damaged or dinged. On damaged items, you can get a <a href="http://consumerist.com/2010/08/09/its-never-too-late-to-haggle-even-at-target/">13% discount at Target</a>. I checked into this, and it's a standard figure that is often offered, especially if you received a damaged item from Target.com. So, if you are okay with the amount of damage the item has, ask for the discount. They will often apply it right there.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Food is very easy to negotiate on. Just like in the warehouse stores, Walmart and Target managers know that food that has reached its best-before-date is not going to be easy to sell. That's why you'll often see those &quot;manager's special&quot; stickers on meat and seafood. Well, just go and talk to a manager and ask for a discount on the food. They will usually apply a savings sticker right there. It can be anywhere from $3 off, to half price. If it's in questionable shape, or the packaging is beaten up, you can often get it for 75% off.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Discontinued items are another great way to save money. You can find out about them from websites, and armed with that knowledge you can ask for big discounts. You will also see them in bargain bins. The store wants them gone; they will negotiate.</li> </ul> <h2>9. Pawn Stores</h2> <p>You've seen Rick on Pawn Stars, so you know the score here. This is one of the few kinds of stores that actively encourages haggling, due to the nature of their &quot;buy low and sell high&quot; model. They want to engage you in negotiations, but this of course works both ways. You can get a deal, if you know how to approach them:</p> <ul> <li>Learn the pawn store discount codes, such as the <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5948519/crack-the-hidden-pawn-shop-price-codes-to-haggle-a-better-price#">codes from Pawn America</a>. Once you know the secret, you are instantly given a way to know how much the item can be discounted. Other pawn stores may have similar codes, so do your homework.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>If you're selling, make sure you know as much as you can about your item. And then, make sure <em>you </em>make the first offer, knowing that it will be countered by a much lower offer. One of the first rules of negotiation is that the person who sets the price controls the bidding.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Don't over-negotiate. The pawn store owner is running a business, and has to make a profit from the items he or she buys. Yes, they are ready to haggle, but if you offer them half of what the item is worth, they'll laugh you out of the store. When they say &quot;final offer,&quot; they mean it.</li> </ul> <h2>10. Thrift Stores</h2> <p>As someone who goes to thrift stores often, haggling is a great skill to have. Every thrift store is different, but having worked behind the scenes at Goodwill, I can tell you that the pricing is very loose. Some items are marked too low, and others too high. With that in mind...</p> <ul> <li>Look at the color-coded tags. If a color is on sale that week, it means it has been sitting on the shelf for a long time. Thrift stores have a high turnover, and want to make room for new merchandise constantly. These items are ready to go to something called salvage, and that means you have the ability to haggle the price.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Look carefully at the condition. Is it scratched, dented, or chipped? Does it work correctly? Did you find snags or holes that the pricer may have missed? Simply by pointing those things out, you can get a manager to knock a few bucks off the price.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Use your smartphone to bring up the going rate of the item you want. If they have overpriced it, they'll usually bring it down to the price you show them. After all, they get all of their items for free, so it's all profit for the charity.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Ask for discounts on bulk purchases. I recently bought a set of four plates the same price that three would have cost me, simply because I asked for a discount if I took them all.</li> </ul> <h2>11. Department Stores</h2> <p>Despite what you may think, Nordstrom's, Macy's, Kohl's, and Dillard's are definitely open to haggling. Managers are open to a little negotiation, and are even authorized to go <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/16/business/more-retailers-see-haggling-as-a-price-of-doing-business.html?_r=2&amp;pagewanted=all">10% below a competitor's price</a>. Here's what you need to do to make sure you are in the discount zone.</p> <ul> <li>Price matching is key. If you find a blouse or a pair of shoes cheaper in another store, bring it up on your smartphone. They want your business, and they have numbers to hit. The price is not going to be much lower anyway, and they'd rather have less profit than no sale.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Sales happen all the time. Ask if the item you're looking for was recently on sale, or if it is coming on sale again soon. The store manager will often give you last week's sale price. You can also come back to a store when the item you bought at full price is now on sale, and ask for the difference as a refund. They will usually honor this.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Once again, scuffs, scratches, and dents are great haggling points.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Use something called &quot;sticker shock.&quot; That means you're very interested in the item until the clerk reveals the price. If you are really taken aback, they will look into discounts for you. Sometimes, those discounts can be significant, especially on jewelry and watches.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Ask for extras to be thrown in for free. If you buy a suit, ask for a shirt and tie.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>The golden rule with department stores &mdash; ask for the manager. They have the authority to offer bigger discounts, and if you are very polite, they often like to show how powerful they are by giving you a big fat discount.</li> </ul> <p><em>Where do you negotiate price?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-retailers-where-you-can-negotiate-a-lower-price">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-8"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-tricks-you-should-learn-from-great-hagglers">10 Tricks You Should Learn From Great Hagglers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/conversation-killers-what-s-holding-you-back-from-negotiating">Conversation Killers: What’s Holding You Back From Negotiating?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-trick-salespeople">6 Ways to Trick Salespeople</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/deal-killers-5-phrases-to-avoid-when-negotiating">Deal Killers: 5 Phrases to Avoid When Negotiating</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-you-shouldnt-order-on-amazon">5 Things You Shouldn&#039;t Order on Amazon</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks Shopping bargaining haggling negotiating sales sticker prices Thu, 30 Apr 2015 15:00:26 +0000 Paul Michael 1401050 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Basic Manners You Must Teach Your Kids http://www.wisebread.com/10-basic-manners-you-must-teach-your-kids <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-basic-manners-you-must-teach-your-kids" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/child_manners_000019524370.jpg" alt="Kid learning basic manners from his parents" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I'm sorry, but it's going to be a lot harder than you thought to teach manners to your children. You behaved at home, as a child, and then you went to college, where you likely <em>misbehaved.</em> Eventually, you found yourself in a relationship, and were probably very free about what you said and did. And then came the children, who are just tiny sponges. They soak up everything their parents say and regurgitate it, most often inappropriately.</p> <p>Time to clean up your act.</p> <p>The best way to teach manners to your children is not to immediately hand them the 18th Edition of <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0061740233/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=0061740233&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=2UL2RQJJZHRWNIE5">Emily Post's Etiquette</a> (although I do think that's a lovely graduation gift). They need to learn the rules below before they can read. They need to learn them from you, their parents, and you need to <em>model</em> these manners. Consistently.</p> <p>You want your kids to be successful and get ahead in life, and they won't be able to get through job interviews without shaking hands properly. They need to know they cannot talk on their cells at the symphony. They will need to write thank-you notes. If you don't show them how, who will?</p> <p>Below are 10 types of etiquette rules you really need to teach your children. These are not <em>behaviors</em>, such as not being a bully; they are the rules of a civilized society.</p> <h2>1. Etiquette 101</h2> <p>Here we have the holy grail of beginning etiquette for children. Master these four phrases, and practice them around, and with, your kids.</p> <ul> <li>&quot;Please, may I&hellip;?&quot;</li> <li>&quot;Thank you.&quot;</li> <li>&quot;No, thank you.&quot;</li> <li>&quot;Excuse me.&quot;</li> </ul> <h2>2. Do Not Interrupt</h2> <p>I work with a guy who interrupts anyone and everyone, all the time. Every time he does it, I think, &quot;Your mother failed.&quot; It is rude to not let someone finish their thought. Children are, by their nature, impatient &mdash; but they need to learn patience, which includes not interrupting. When the interruptions happen, say &quot;Please don't interrupt. Let me finish what I was saying.&quot;</p> <h2>3. Introductions</h2> <p>Making introductions is difficult for adults, let alone children. As an adult, though, isn't it nice when someone introduces you? I have found that kids can master this, but they are going to need prompting to remember (&quot;Ben, did you introduce your friends?&quot;). Even the very young can handle &quot;This is Jason, and this is Katie.&quot;</p> <p>If an adult comes to your house, your child should stop what they are doing, and come say hello. Ideally, the child should offer their hand to shake, and say &quot;Hello, Mrs. ____.&quot; If their friends are present, further introductions should be made by the child. When the adult leaves, the child should come and say good-bye. Many children are very shy about introductions, so be patient and keep working on it.</p> <h2>4. Responding to a Polite Question</h2> <p>Following an introduction, or a greeting, an adult will usually attempt to talk to a child. Most of the time, the question will be &quot;How are you?&quot;</p> <p>Respond to the adult and let them know how you are, kiddo. But then, ask the adult how<em> they</em> are. Here is how Uriah, age four and two doors down, handles this one:</p> <p>&quot;How are you today, Uriah?&quot;</p> <p>&quot;I'm GREAT! I have T-ball today! Uhh, how are you? Do you want to see me hit this ball? I had CAKE today! Last week I made it to third base!&quot;</p> <p>Yes, I find him completely charming. Most children, though, I find, just ignore the adults. That's not okay, parents. Even if your child is shy, teach them to smile and say &quot;I am fine, thank you. How are you?&quot;</p> <h2>5. How to Behave at the Table</h2> <p>It is my sincere hope that your family, no matter what its makeup, sits together at least for the dinner meal. A good chore for even young children is to learn to set the table. Once seated, you may say grace, or have a family custom &mdash; but please, no cell phones or other electronic devices at the table. Use this time to reconnect as a family, and instill some basics.</p> <ul> <li>Before each meal, wash your hands.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Do not chew with your mouth open.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Do not interrupt another family member's story. This is an important time for everyone to share their day.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>If the child wants second helpings, this is when we use &quot;Please pass the ___.&quot; When the food is passed, they should say &quot;Thank you.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Burps happen. They should be silent, and followed by &quot;Excuse me.&quot; No belching contests, please.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>If you have a cold or cough, sneeze or cough into your tissue, and then go dispose of the tissue and wash your hands again. If you have no tissue, sneeze into your sleeve, and then go wash.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Absolutely no picking or scratching.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>When the child is done with dinner, they should say &quot;Please, may I be excused?&quot; and when permission is granted, they should take their plate, utensils, and napkin to the kitchen (and follow whatever cleanup rules you have).<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Do not nag (&quot;I told you a thousand times...&quot;) at the table. Just keep correcting, or the dinner experience becomes associated with battles.</li> </ul> <p>You will be really glad you taught them table manners at home before you take them to restaurants, which can be intimidating to children who have no practice with napkins, silverware, and complicated place settings.</p> <h2>6. How to Behave at a Play, Concert, or Movie</h2> <p>Movies are a good place to start teaching your children about how to behave at a public performance. Hit the bathroom and get snacks ahead of time, and encourage them to be quiet, or whisper. Next, try a play or concert, and talk about intermissions, listening, watching quietly, and staying in your seat. Before the event, explain the usher's job. Not okay: Gum, candy wrappers, cell phones, or kicking the seat ahead of you.</p> <h2>7. Writing Thank-You Notes</h2> <p>Being able to compose and send a thank-you note is another skill that will serve a person all their lives. You should write them with the child until approximately age eight or nine, when they should have the ability to write their own. You may need to help them get started.</p> <p>My &quot;trick&quot; in getting thank-yous done was to get out a nice array of stationery, cards, stickers, fun stamps, and colorful pens. I also had my address book at the ready, and mugs of cocoa and snacks. Then, we would do our notes <em>together</em>.</p> <h2>8. How to Shake Hands</h2> <p>Ah, the limp handshake. It still exists, which surprises me every time I encounter it. It's so easy to do it correctly! Here are the instructions.</p> <p>Stand up. Extend your hand. Using a firm grip (not a bone-crusher), grasp the other person's hand and grip/shake while you introduce yourself and the other person introduces him/herself. Here is a great video of some kids who have this <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X0CH6hq2gGA">handshake skill</a> down!</p> <h2>9. Avoiding Bad Language</h2> <p>It's very simple: if you swear in front of your kids, they are going to swear, too. The problem is (and I'm Exhibit A): They will use these words at some very inappropriate times. Often, they may not know what the bad words mean, and explaining can help (they will probably be horrified).</p> <h2>10. When Not to Use Electronics</h2> <p>This is especially hard because adult modeling is so poor. You can be a part of that change, though. Readers will probably disagree, but I don't think electronics, or most specifically cell phones, belong at the table, movies, concerts, performances, weddings, funerals, churches, or school. I will hopefully assume you do not use your cell while driving (and that includes texting), which is simply dangerous.</p> <p>I was recently at a picnic, and one of my old friends did not bring her daughter, saying &quot;She is too much of a brat.&quot; I remember thinking, well, that's your fault, and what a shame, because the other children were having so much fun. Yes, teaching manners to children will try your patience, but it will ease their passage into adulthood when they master the basics.</p> <p><em>Anything we've missed? What manners do you consider absolutely essential?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/marla-walters">Marla Walters</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-basic-manners-you-must-teach-your-kids">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-9"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/if-youre-doing-this-on-your-first-date-youre-not-getting-a-second">If You&#039;re Doing This on Your First Date, You&#039;re Not Getting a Second</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-supposed-etiquette-faux-pas-that-actually-make-you-look-good">3 Supposed Etiquette Faux Pas That Actually Make You Look Good</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/18-things-people-with-good-social-skills-never-do">18 Things People With Good Social Skills Never Do</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-immaturity-can-make-you-happier-and-more-successful">7 Ways Immaturity Can Make You Happier and More Successful</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-ways-youre-driving-your-coworkers-insane">12 Ways You&#039;re Driving Your Coworkers Insane</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Family Personal Development children etiquette manners raising kids Thu, 30 Apr 2015 13:00:26 +0000 Marla Walters 1401102 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: How to Think Like a Millionaire http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-how-to-think-like-a-millionaire <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-how-to-think-like-a-millionaire" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/millionaire_money_000008334156.jpg" alt="Man learning how to think like a millionaire" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some great articles on how to think like a millionaire, tips to grow the best organic garden, and money-saving ways to use cornstarch.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.goodfinancialcents.com/millionaire-mindset/">4 Ways to Think Like a Millionaire</a> &mdash; Millionaires have an internal locus of control &mdash; they see themselves as being in charge of their own lives. [Good Financial Cents]</p> <p><a href="http://afewshortcuts.com/2015/04/10-tips-for-the-best-organic-garden">10 Tips for the Best Organic Garden</a> &mdash; Learn about companion planting so your plants can help each other grow. [A Few Short Cuts]</p> <p><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Uses-Cornstarch-35705053">18 Uses For Cornstarch That Will Save You Money</a> &mdash; Make a paste of cornstarch and water. Spread it over a sunburn or bug bites to soothe sore skin. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://www.csmonitor.com/Business/Saving-Money/2015/0425/Best-hotel-promotions-this-Spring">Best hotel promotions this Spring</a> &mdash; A number of hotel chains are offering bonus reward points or free nights for their spring promotions. [The Monitor]</p> <p><a href="http://www.lifehack.org/articles/lifestyle/10-necessary-items-for-healthy-shopping-list.html">10 Necessary Items For A Healthy Shopping List</a> &mdash; Fill your basket with dark green leafy veggies. The paler variety, like iceberg lettuce, will contain less quality nutrition. [Lifehack.org]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://blog.highperformancelifestyle.net/how-to-be-happy/">Want To Be Happy? Optimize Your Downtime (3 Easy Steps)</a> &mdash; Step 1: Spend about half an hour making a list of your happiest moments ever. [High Performance Lifestyle]</p> <p><a href="http://www.moneycrush.com/gaining-extra-space-on-a-shoestring/">Get Extra Space Without Breaking the Bank</a> &mdash; Take inventory of any and all free space in your home. Empty area in the middle of the kitchen? Write it down. Half a closet is clear of stuff? Write that down, too. [Money Crush]</p> <p><a href="http://blog.mint.com/how-to/how-to-spend-less-and-get-healthy-042715">How to Spend Less and Get Healthy</a> &mdash; Try making international dishes &mdash; many contain less pricy ingredients like rice, beans, and chickpeas. And if you live near an ethnic market, check them out for your grocery needs! [Mint Life]</p> <p><a href="http://www.themoneyprinciple.co.uk/dont-worry-about-money-sort-out-your-life-instead/">Don&rsquo;t Worry About Money: Sort out Your Life Instead</a> &mdash; If you don't have a handle on your financial situation, then other parts of your life are probably a mess, too. Once you have those in order, then your money situation will improve, too. [The Money Principle]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/7-brilliant-ways-for-kids-to-keep-in-touch-with-grandparents">7 Brilliant Ways for Kids to Keep in Touch with Grandparents</a> &mdash; Use technology to play games with relatives who live far away. Play board games online, enter a fantasy sports league, or play 20 questions via text messages. [Parenting Squad]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amy-lu">Amy Lu</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-how-to-think-like-a-millionaire">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-10"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/if-youre-doing-these-4-exercises-your-workouts-are-worth-nothing">If You&#039;re Doing These 4 Exercises, Your Workouts Are Worth Nothing</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/feeling-stuck-100-ways-to-change-your-life">Feeling Stuck? 100 Ways to Change Your Life</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-basic-manners-you-must-teach-your-kids">10 Basic Manners You Must Teach Your Kids</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-one-financial-trick-lets-you-buy-happiness">This One Financial Trick Lets You Buy Happiness</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/invest-your-time-in-these-13-things-while-youre-in-your-20s">Invest Your Time in These 13 Things While You&#039;re in Your 20s</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Development best money tips millionaire Wed, 29 Apr 2015 19:00:20 +0000 Amy Lu 1406334 at http://www.wisebread.com The 7 Best Affordable Cities to Start a Family http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-best-affordable-cities-to-start-a-family <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-7-best-affordable-cities-to-start-a-family" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/chicago_city_view_000026130108.jpg" alt="Chicago is an afforable city to start a family" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Looking to start a family? Many major metro areas can be tough choices, given their high cost of living, crime statistics, and public school quality. So, we've dug a little deeper to uncover seven U.S. metro areas that offer the best environments for starting a family.</p> <h2>1. Virginia Beach, Virginia</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/virginia_beach_000041511570.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>If you're looking to mix business with pleasure at an affordable price, Virginia Beach is an option that should be within your consideration. With several large companies in and around the area, along with a plethora of government opportunities nearby, the economy is strong and the property values are solid with an <a href="http://www.zillow.com/virginia-beach-va/home-values/">average home price</a> of roughly $240,000. Plus, wouldn't you love to take your kids to the ocean every weekend without having to board a plane or endure a long car ride?</p> <h2>2. Chicago, Illinois</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/chicago_city_view_000026130108.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>If you can bear the cold (it gets and stays well below freezing for weeks during the winter), Chicago is a fantastically affordable city, relative to its size and offerings. Its many amenities will keep your entire family entertained no matter what your interests. And its <a href="http://www.zillow.com/chicago-il/home-values/">housing costs</a> are among the lowest of any metropolitan area in the country, with an average home price of about $230,000.</p> <h2>3. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/city_of_pittsburgh_000021195550.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Pittsburgh is a city on the rise, quickly becoming a top education and health care center. These two industries have stabilized and grown an economy that once relied on the steel industry. The city's many museums, active waterfront, nearby natural areas, sports teams, parks, and festivals make it a wonderfully diverse area for families. The <a href="http://www.realtor.com/local/Pittsburgh_PA/home-prices">average home price</a> in Pittsburgh is approximately $230,000.</p> <h2>4. Nashville, Tennessee</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/Nashville_000021951973.jpg" alt="&copy;iStock.com/MoreISO" width="605" height="340" /></p> <p>Music City is one of the greatest areas of innovation and arts in the country at the moment. People from all over the world are visiting and moving there thanks to the vibrant cultural and local business scene. It's no wonder that celebrities who want a lower profile and a high quality of life are buying homes in Nashville. It also happens to be a winner for families and kids, thanks to all of its culture and natural beauty. <a href="http://www.trulia.com/real_estate/Nashville-Tennessee/market-trends/">Average home prices</a> are still a bargain here at about $205,000.</p> <h2>5. Madison, Wisconsin</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/Madison_000050792842.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Madison is a top pick for those who love the vibrant energy and cultural opportunity of a university town. Complete with one of the best farmer's markets in the country, a tight-knit community feel, and award-winning family-friendly attractions, Madison is an ideal place for families. <a href="http://www.trulia.com/real_estate/Madison-Wisconsin/">Median home prices</a> in Madison are some of the most affordable in the country at around $195,000.</p> <h2>6. Austin, Texas</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/Austin_000048267910.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>&quot;Keeping it weird&quot; is Austin's motto, and they own it. This is a &quot;come as you are&quot; kind of town and known for its friendly, supportive vibe. Here, originality and creativity are highly encouraged and celebrated. Austin offers mild winters, some of the best music in the country, plenty of opportunities to enjoy the outdoors, and a growing economy based in the technology sector. <a href="http://www.zillow.com/austin-tx/home-values/">Typical housing costs</a> hover around $345,000. Though this is more expensive than most of the other areas on this list, it's still a far cry cheaper than places like New York City and San Francisco.</p> <h2>7. Chapel Hill, North Carolina</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/Chapel_Hill_000022409564.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Like Madison, Chapel Hill is also rich with university town resources, but its winter is more moderate than Wisconsin's. As part of the Research Triangle, the economy is strong, and like many of the other cities on this list, it has a community vibe to match. Chapel Hill's calendar is loaded with kid-friendly events, and it boasts dozens of places to stage them, including its numerous gardens and parks. <a href="http://www.zillow.com/chapel-hill-nc/home-values/">Median home prices</a> are closer to Austin's at about $330,000.</p> <p>If the time is right to start a family and you're looking for a new city to begin that adventure, this list offers a strong starting point for your search. Curious about how the cost of living between different cities compares? Check out this <a href="http://money.cnn.com/calculator/pf/cost-of-living/">cost of living comparison tool</a> to find out.</p> <p><em>In which cities are you considering starting a family?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/christa-avampato">Christa Avampato</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-best-affordable-cities-to-start-a-family">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-11"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-reasons-you-should-always-hire-a-moving-company">6 Reasons You Should Always Hire a Moving Company</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/self-employed-heres-how-to-get-your-apartment-application-approved">Self-Employed? Here&#039;s How to Get Your Apartment Application Approved</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/big-lessons-from-the-tiny-house-movement">Big Lessons From the Tiny House Movement</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/re-nesting-tips-for-moving-back-in-with-your-parents">Re-Nesting: Tips for Moving Back in With Your Parents</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-places-it-pays-to-relocate-to">6 Places It Pays to Relocate To</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Family Real Estate and Housing affordable living cities having kids metros moving raising family relocating Wed, 29 Apr 2015 15:00:26 +0000 Christa Avampato 1401147 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Old Things in Your House That Have Serious Re-Sale Value http://www.wisebread.com/6-old-things-in-your-house-that-have-serious-re-sale-value <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-old-things-in-your-house-that-have-serious-re-sale-value" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_shopping_purse_000015265096.jpg" alt="Woman selling items from her house with serious re-sale value" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's spring cleaning season. But before you toss your old stuff on the curb or schlep it to the donation center, consider selling it for extra cash. These days, there are a number of places you can sell your things online and in-person, and all it takes is some time and effort. You'd be surprised at the resale value some of your old &quot;junk&quot; holds. So, let's take a look!</p> <h2>1. Furniture</h2> <p>If you comb Craigslist or your local Buy/Sell group, you're bound to see a lot of furniture for sale. It might seem like there's a glut, but a lot of these pieces move &mdash; and fast. We have had great success selling desks, dressers, bookcases, and even a couch during moves. And we've made hundreds of dollars doing so.</p> <p>Check out the <a href="https://www.splitwise.com/calculators/furniture">Splitwise Furniture Calculator</a> to figure out fair asking prices. For example, we bought a couch three years ago for $900 that didn't fit in our new space. Taking into account the age, price, and condition (fairly good), the calculator estimated we could ask $420, or nearly half our original purchase price. We listed it for $450 and settled on $425 with the buyer doing all the heavy lifting.</p> <h2>2. Electronics</h2> <p>Sure, old electronics depreciate at a fairly rapid rate. At the same time, how many of us have last generation cell phones, eReaders, televisions, digital cameras, and other tech devices just taking up space in a closet or drawer? I'm raising my hand here, and I'm positive many readers are joining me.</p> <p>Let's take a look at the Apple iPhone 3G. We have two of these guys in our junk drawer because our cell plan just allowed us to switch phones for free. We actually got the 3Gs for free to begin with (same plan promotion), and I used <a href="http://worthmonkey.com/#/Apple%20Iphone%203G">Worth Monkey</a> to figure out a fair asking value: $30 for each. I also have an old Nook Color that I've stopped using since we got an iPad. I could get around $34 if I choose to sell it. It's better than collecting dust.</p> <h2>3. Designer Duds</h2> <p>Do you have any true investment pieces in your wardrobe you no longer wear? Certain luxury brands hold incredible resale value, including Givenchy, Victoria Beckham, Charlotte Olympia, and Alexander McQueen. If so, you can go the consignment route with sites like <a href="https://www.therealreal.com">TheRealReal</a> and make a mint &mdash; up to 70% of the sale price (and most pieces sell in just three days).</p> <p>For the rest of us, consignment stores, thrift shops, and even online second hand shops offer tons of opportunities to sell your old wearables, purses, and shoes for cash. Usually clothing that holds the best value is in good condition (no holes, rips, or stains), within a few seasons, and from popular labels. Try your local shop or check out thredUP (here's&nbsp;<a href="http://track.flexlinks.com/a.ashx?foid=1029882.727442&amp;fot=9999&amp;foc=1" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">how it works</a>), where you'll send your clothes in a postage paid bag and earn money to spend on the site or cash out.</p> <h2>4. Kid Stuff</h2> <p>My local mom group has a Facebook page entirely dedicated to selling baby and kid gear. The minute something is listed, it's claimed (and often with a bidding war). Things like play houses, slides, water tables, strollers, bikes and scooters, baby swings, and clothing are all hot items. Don't feel like listing on your own? Check out resale shops, like <a href="http://www.onceuponachild.com">Once Upon a Child</a>, and get paid on the spot.</p> <p>And if you walk around your neighborhood during yard sale season, you'll see these things picked over quickly. Better yet, you can charge higher prices &mdash; even 100% of your initial purchase &mdash; since most gear gets minimal use. My advice? Consider advertising your sale on Craigslist or Facebook with a photo preview of what you're selling. If people see you have a play house they've been seeking, for example, they might camp out and buy it straight away.</p> <h2>5. Cloth Diapers</h2> <p>Furthermore, cloth diapers &mdash; yes, used ones &mdash; <a href="http://live.happybottomus.com/cloth-diaper-resale-value/">hold a surprising value</a> and resell like crazy. In fact, you can recoup up to 64% of your original investment if you keep your diapers in good working order. Add to that the thousands of dollars cloth diapering saves over disposables, and the extra effort with washing diapers seems totally worth it.</p> <p>Keep in mind that certain brands and types of diapers sell better than others. FuzziBunz one-size and bumGenius 3.0s are two popular brands and styles that sell particularly easily. And unique prints or speciality diapers may even earn back more than their original purchase price. To keep diapers fresh and in good condition, always follow the manufacturer's care instructions.&nbsp;</p> <h2>6. Tools and Garden Supplies</h2> <p>As far as yard sales go, some of the bestselling items are those for the home and garden. You can list a circular saw for up to $36. A lawn mower might earn you $137. Use a guide like <a href="http://www.statricks.com">Statricks</a> to help find the &quot;Blue Book&quot; value of whatever it is you're looking to sell. There's also some cool data on this site: Did you know a Craftsman vacuum is <a href="http://www.statricks.com/blue-book/other/455189-craftsman">listed in local classifieds</a> about every 40 hours?</p> <p>Garage sales are a lot of work, however, so if you have tools and home maintenance stuff you're looking to unload &mdash; try online. eBay has long been a great option for selling second-hand items. Their home and garden section is bursting with great brands at fair prices that attract buyers from all over the world. Just register for a free account, take photos, write up a description to list, and get paid.</p> <p><em>Where do you turn to transform your stale stuff into fresh dollars?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-marcin">Ashley Marcin</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-old-things-in-your-house-that-have-serious-re-sale-value">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-12"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-rid-of-all-your-crap">How to Get Rid of All Your Crap</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-be-a-bad-craigslist-seller">How to Be a Bad Craigslist Seller</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/hoopde-for-sale-starting-price-500-winning-bid-226521">Hoopde for sale. Starting price - $500. Winning bid - $226,521.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/looking-for-love-online">Looking for Love (Online)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-cheap-ways-to-lower-your-blood-sugar">13 Natural and Easy Ways to Lower Your Blood Sugar</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks consignment craigslist resale selling value Wed, 29 Apr 2015 13:00:24 +0000 Ashley Marcin 1400967 at http://www.wisebread.com Dishwasher Smells Bad? Here's How to Fix It http://www.wisebread.com/dishwasher-smells-bad-heres-how-to-fix-it <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/dishwasher-smells-bad-heres-how-to-fix-it" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_smelly_dishwasher_000040458114.jpg" alt="Woman loading smelly dishwasher and learning how to fix it" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Reeking dishwashers are the worst. Trust me &mdash; I lived in a small apartment with one that emanated a disgusting smell for months. When it gets bad enough, you feel embarrassed to have people over and you don't even want to be there yourself.</p> <p>Fortunately, you don't have to live with a smelly dishwasher. The steps below cured the awful washer in our rental, and they can help yours, too.</p> <h2>Practice Good Dishwasher Hygiene</h2> <p>Sure, everyone knows how to run a dishwasher, but not everyone knows how to do so in such a way that odors are prevented. If your dishwasher keeps developing an odor despite your ongoing attempts to clean it, you may need to change the way you do dishes.</p> <p>Rinse large food particles off your dishes before you put them in the washer. This prevents them from building up in the food trap. Empty your dishwasher as soon as you can after it runs. This makes sure that your dishwasher isn't sitting there with a bunch of hot air inside, which can cause musty, mildewy smells. And make sure the dishwasher gets a chance to dry after every cycle. Leave it open just a crack to let fresh air in.</p> <p>If you have the option, think about running your dishwasher on a setting that allows the dishwasher to blow air in order to partially dry the dishes. This usually costs more in electric bills, but having air flow through the washer can reduce odors quite a bit.</p> <h2>Clean the Food Trap</h2> <p>Most dishwashers have a small area where large particles of food that get washed off your dishes are stored. This keeps them from clogging the dishwasher or even the drain. If they sit in there too long, though, they can get nasty and produce a terrible smell.</p> <p>The food trap will be in a slightly different place in each dishwasher. Usually, they're in a small area on the bottom. Take out your lower washer rack and it's often easy to find. Using a cloth or a pair of rubber gloves to keep you hands out of the muck, scrape it as clean as you can. You may want to use some dishwasher cleaner afterwards, just to make sure it's fresh and sanitized.</p> <h2>Run Various Cleaning Cleansers Through Your Dishwasher</h2> <p>There are several different things that, when ran through your washer alone, can help fix odor problems. You can try a specially formulated dishwasher cleaning solution, vinegar, baking soda, or citric acid (you can even use powdered lemonade if you can't find the acid itself or you don't want to mess with it).</p> <p>If your substance is a powder, put it in like you would normally put in detergent. If it is a liquid, pour &frac14; cup in the bottom of your dishwasher. Then turn it on and run a normal cycle. You may have to do this several times (possibly with several different substances), before you figure out what works for you, but these are all very helpful for odor reduction. In fact, once you've figured out what is best in your dishwasher, run it through once every month or so to keep the odors away for good.</p> <h2>Check Your Air Gap</h2> <p>Depending on where you live, you may or may not have an air gap for your dishwasher (different building codes have different requirements). And air gap sets up the dishwasher so that any overflows will flow into your sink. This keeps waste from your kitchen sink from backing up into your dishwasher, which can cause some really horrible smells.</p> <p>You can search online for information about checking for and installing an air gap, or you can call your local plumber. It's usually not very hard to do on your own, but it does require some confidence in dealing with plumbing problems and fixtures. If you do need to call a plumber, it will be well worth your time and money when that odor disappears.</p> <p>You may want to combine the above techniques &mdash; and, in fact, I highly suggest doing so &mdash; to find a dishwasher deodorizing solution that works for you. You can change your dishwasher hygiene, clean your food trap, and run a cleaning substance through the washer without having to put in much effort. Then, if that doesn't work, you can ponder calling a plumber (or trying to get your landlord to do it!).</p> <p><em>Have you dealt with a particularly smelly dishwasher? How did you fix the problem?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dishwasher-smells-bad-heres-how-to-fix-it">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-13"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-really-easy-ways-to-unclog-drains">10 Really Easy Ways to Unclog Drains</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-baking-soda-took-my-bathroom-from-yuck-to-yes">How Baking Soda Took My Bathroom from “Yuck” to Yes!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-militarys-four-step-plan-to-keeping-your-place-clean">The Military&#039;s Four-Step Plan to Keeping Your Place Clean</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/101-little-things-you-can-fix-right-now">101 Little Things You Can Fix Right Now!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-simple-ways-to-de-stink-your-stuff">8 Simple Ways to De-Stink Your Stuff</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> General Tips bad smells cleaning dishwasher home maintenance Tue, 28 Apr 2015 21:00:22 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1400620 at http://www.wisebread.com 4 Ways to Stop Your Spouse From Overspending http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-stop-your-spouse-from-overspending <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/4-ways-to-stop-your-spouse-from-overspending" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/money_saved_piggy_banks_000055929726.jpg" alt="Learning how to keep your spouse from overspending" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Spouses aren't always honest with each other when it comes to money. A study released earlier this year by CreditCards.com found that nearly one in five U.S. consumers have hidden purchases of $500 or more from their live-in partners or spouses. The same study found that nearly 7.2 million people have hidden a bank or credit card account from their spouse or partner.</p> <p>It's no surprise, then, that partners often butt heads over spending decisions. One partner wants to save. The other likes to spend, and will spend enough each month to break the household budget, often hiding these purchases until they show up on next month's credit card statement.</p> <p>What if you are the financially responsible partner in a relationship? Is there anything you can do to stop your partner from blowing your household savings on video games, clothes, or expensive electronics?</p> <p>There might be. Changing a partner's bad spending habits requires plenty of work and even more communication. To start, check out these four tips for changing your partner's free-spending ways.</p> <h2>Set a Regular Money Meeting</h2> <p>Robert Stammers, director of investor education at the CFA Institute &mdash; a trade association serving investment professionals &mdash; says that couples need to be willing to talk about money. Unfortunately, too many couples never hold these financial talks.</p> <p>This isn't surprising: Money often scares couples. A survey released in early 2015 by the National Foundation for Credit Counseling found that 47% of couples say that money disagreements are the most common <a href="https://www.nfcc.org/press/multimedia/news-releases/january-nfcc-survey-reveals-top-financial-relationship-stressors/">cause of stress</a> in their relationships.</p> <p>But not talking about money as a way to avoid these disagreements is a mistake. A partner who overspends needs to realize the consequences of this behavior. That can't happen if partners never talk about money. Stammers recommends that couples set a regular meeting date &mdash; maybe once a month &mdash; to talk about money issues.</p> <p>&quot;No two people have the same ideas and philosophy about money and investing, so it is important to determine upfront what is important to the both of you,&quot; he says.</p> <h2>Set Aside Some Fun Money</h2> <p>Creating a separate bank account for fun money might be a solution, says Kelley Long, resident financial planner for El Segundo, California's Financial Finesse, and a spokesperson for the National CPA Financial Literacy Commission.</p> <p>This account will give the overspending partner a bit of financial freedom, and might prevent this spouse from breaking into a couple's main account set aside for paying the mortgage, car payment, and other bills, Long claims.</p> <p>&quot;This money can be spent without restriction or comment,&quot; Long says. &quot;When the money in the account is gone, the spender has to wait until the next payday to spend again.&quot;</p> <p>If the overspending partner raids other accounts after cleaning out the &quot;fun money&quot; account? Then a relationship has more serious trust issues that must be addressed, Long says.</p> <h2>Don't Let the Money Come Home</h2> <p>Michael Chadwick, chief executive officer of Unionville, Connecticut-based Chadwick Financial Advisors, has a more practical solution: Send more of the money you're earning into a retirement account and less of it into your savings account. Your overspending spouse can't spend the money you've stashed in a 401(k) account.</p> <h2>Let the Spender Take Control &mdash; For a Month</h2> <p>It may be counterintuitive, but it might help to have your free-spending partner pay the bills and manage the budget for at least a month. As Chadwick says, this might provide your partner with some insight into why wasting money on unnecessary purchases is such a problem.</p> <p>If none of these tips work? Your overspending partner might have a more serious issue, one that perhaps only counseling can solve, Chadwick says. &quot;Spending and shopping when out of control are no different than smoking, drugs, or alcohol.&quot;</p> <p><em>How do you and your spouse or partner manage money?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-to-stop-your-spouse-from-overspending">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-14"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-relationship-rules-you-should-be-breaking">10 Relationship Rules You Should Be Breaking</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/say-no-7-reasons-why-you-shouldnt-get-married-if-youre-in-debt">Say No! 7 Reasons Why You Shouldn&#039;t Get Married if You&#039;re in Debt</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-money-saving-tricks-to-know-before-buying-an-engagement-ring">12 Money-Saving Tricks to Know Before Buying an Engagement Ring</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/back-in-debt-heres-how-to-pay-it-off-for-good">Back in Debt? Here&#039;s How to Pay it Off for Good</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-times-when-its-okay-to-take-a-loan">6 Times When It&#039;s Okay to Take a Loan</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Debt Management Family couples finances marriage Spending Money Tue, 28 Apr 2015 13:00:28 +0000 Dan Rafter 1399139 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Surprising Things That Are Stressing You Out http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-surprising-things-that-are-stressing-you-out <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-surprising-things-that-are-stressing-you-out" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_stressed_out_000010547363.jpg" alt="Woman stressed out for surprising reasons" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some great articles on surprising things that are stressing you out, handy spring cleaning tips, and frugal ways to celebrate Mother&rsquo;s Day.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Surprising-Things-Cause-Stress-31010213">7 Surprising Things You Didn't Know Were Stressing You Out</a> &mdash; Loud noises can wear you out because it triggers your fight-or-flight response, which increases adrenaline and blood pressure. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://www.getorganizedwizard.com/blog/2015/04/spring-cleaning-tips-for-an-organized-home/">Spring Cleaning Tips For An Organized Home</a> &mdash; Cut a lemon in half and scrub the cut part on your bathroom fixtures to remove tough water stains. [Get Organized Wizard]</p> <p><a href="http://freefrombroke.com/frugal-save-mothers-day/">Don&rsquo;t Go Broke Celebrating Mother&rsquo;s Day &ndash; 7 Frugal Ideas</a> &mdash; Going out on Mother's Day can be hectic and expensive. Opt to make dinner for your mom instead, or treat her to breakfast in bed! [Free From Broke]</p> <p><a href="http://www.thepennyhoarder.com/reduce-reuse-recycle-earth-friendly-ways-to-save-money/">Reduce, Reuse and Recycle: 11 Earth-Friendly Ways to Save Money</a> &mdash; Repurpose glass jars in chandeliers, soap dispensers, or food containers! [The Penny Hoarder]</p> <p><a href="http://everythingfinanceblog.com/13591/6-cheap-family-activities-enjoy-outdoors.html">6 Cheap Family Activities to Enjoy Outdoors</a> &mdash; Have a backyard campout, complete with a mini campfire and an outdoor stove. [Everything Finance]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://frugalbeautiful.com/blog/5-ways-curb-overspending/">6 Ways to Curb Overspending</a> &mdash; Try to only shop at stores with easy return policies &mdash; in case buyer's remorse hits. [Frugal Beautiful]</p> <p><a href="http://gradmoneymatters.com/money-making-ideas/freelancing-before-looking-for-clients.html">8 Things You Must Do Before You Even Start Looking for Clients</a> &mdash; If you're new to freelancing, make sure to have a portfolio and a website ready before you start looking for clients. [Grad Money Matters]</p> <p><a href="http://www.creditsesame.com/blog/home-improvement-tips-sell-your-home-for-more/">7 Low-Cost Home Improvement Tips to Sell Your Home for Top Dollar</a> &mdash; Spruce up your bedrooms with new coverings &mdash; think shams, sheets, throw blanket, throw pillows, and comforter. They won't be sold with your house, but they'll make it look more attractive to buyers. [Credit Sesame]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/18-ways-to-celebrate-earth-day-all-year-long">18 Ways to Celebrate Earth Day All Year Long</a> &mdash; Earth Day has passed, but we can celebrate Mother Nature every day! Turn your yard into a wildlife habitat by planting native vegetation, setting up bird feeders and birdbaths, and creating inviting spaces for other animals. [Parenting Squad]</p> <p><a href="http://www.doughroller.net/money-management/surprising-lifetime-cost-car-ownership/">The Surprising Lifetime Cost of Car Ownership</a> &mdash; What if you took the money you would spend on car ownership over a lifetime and invested it instead? [Dough Roller]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amy-lu">Amy Lu</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-surprising-things-that-are-stressing-you-out">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. 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