9 Easy Ways To Save At Christmas

MoneyTips

Does your Christmas season usually lead to the January blues due to excessive holiday spending? It doesn’t have to be that way. With a combination of planning and willpower, you can enjoy a festive holiday without starting the New Year in a big financial hole. Consider these nine ways to celebrate while staying fiscally responsible.

1. Limit Gift Spending – Start by establishing a shopping list and a budget for all of your items. Track special holiday online offers. Consider using price comparison apps and websites. Take advantage of any coupons. Large families can save by drawing names for a gift exchange instead of trying to buy multiple smaller gifts for every family member. If you want more credit, check out our list of credit card offers.

2. Reject Impulse Buying – Retailers expect you to impulse buy…

9 Holiday Shopping Tips

MoneyTips

What brightens up your holiday shopping season? You may prefer a quiet Christmas season at home, large family gatherings at the home of the relative who drew the short straw, or hand-to-hand combat on Black Friday at the mall. However, everyone agrees that saving money on Christmas shopping gives the holiday an extra layer of cheer. Here are nine suggestions to increase your holiday cheer and your savings account simultaneously.

1. Make a List – Avoid the temptation to go shopping without a list and look for holiday inspiration. You’ll find inspiration, along with many gift items you didn’t really want at a higher price than you should have paid. Know what you are shopping for and avoid costly holiday “mission creep.” After all, even Santa makes a list (and checks it twice).

2. Make a Budget – A budget is the key to any form of saving. Once …

Black Friday Predictions

MoneyTips

Black Friday arrives on Friday, November 23. Do you plan to join the frenzied early sales with hundreds of your fellow consumers, scour the Internet for online bargains as soon as you’ve digested your Thanksgiving turkey, or wait until the first shopping wave dies down and take your chances a little later in the day?

Whatever your strategy, a battle plan is important – and battle planning requires reconnaissance. Here are a few Black Friday predictions to consider as you formulate your plans.

Spending Increases – Here’s an easy prediction – people will spend more over the period from Thanksgiving Day to Cyber Monday than they did last year. BestBlackFriday.com predicts an average spending of $340.33 per consumer, up almost $5 from last year.

The online spending component is exploding. Last year marked the first time that Black Friday online shopping topped $5 billion. BestBlackFriday.com predicts $5.8 billion, an increase of mo…

Be on the Lookout for Home Improvement Scams

MoneyTips

Ah, summertime. The weather warms up, the flowers bloom, and the flocks of home improvement scammers return for their annual summertime gathering.

Like other unwanted pests, shady home improvement contractors tend to show up in the spring and summertime offering services ranging from driveway sealing to chimney repair to roof replacement to a complete home makeover. These scam artists often prey on the elderly, who can be more easily tricked or bullied into signing bad contracts. Avoid this situation by taking some precautionary steps.

  • Initiate the Search – Some contractors will approach you unsolicited and ask if you want particular work done because they just happen to be in the area, have excess supplies to deal with, or would like to use your home as a model for their services. Even if they seem sincere, ask for contact information and let them know you will be in touch if you need work done. Never sign contracts on the spot.

5 Tips For Saving Money In College

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By Roshni Chowdhry, head of customer experience at SafetyNet

Of the 17 million Americans currently enrolled in college, 74 percent qualify as what we used to call “nontraditional” students:

  • One in five is 30 years or older.
  • About half don’t rely on their parents for money.
  • One quarter are caring for a child.
  • 47 percent attend college part time at some point.
  • 25 percent took a year off between high school and college.
  • 44 percent have parents without a bachelor’s degree.

In other words, if you’re a college student today, there’s a good chance you’re not the Hollywood stereotype of an 18-year-old on your own for the first time. Still, whether it’s your first year of indepe…

Would You Share Your Driving Data To Save Money?

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By Stephanie Braun, Director of Auto Product Management at Esurance

Companies have collected data on their customers for decades. It allows them to offer more tailored services and products, and provide more relevant messaging. The reason data collection has gotten so much press lately is because it’s reached unprecedented levels. Already, we create 2.5 quintillion bytes of data each day. In fact, 90 percent of the world’s entire data reservoir was only created in the last two years. Automated technology like the self-driving car is expected to accelerate the quantity and quality of data that’s collected — perhaps exponentially.

Autonomous vehicles rely on real-time data collection to avoid accidents on the road and ensure engine performance. The suite of sensors and s…

4 Out Of 5 Americans Lie For Money

MoneyTips

Have you ever lied for financial gain? The odds are strong that you’ve done it at least once. According to a new study from finder.com, almost 4 out of 5 Americans have admitted to lying for some type of financial gain – and many don’t feel guilty about their lies.

Over 2,000 U.S. adults were asked if they had committed any of the financial lies presented in a list, from the illegal to the merely unethical. A surprising 78% of respondents admitted to at least one of the transgressions. Assuming a random sample, the study implies that almost 193 million American adults have lied for financial gain at some point in their lives.

Over half of respondents had lied in two specific areas – pocketing found money that wasn’t theirs (56%) and accepting an undercharge or excess change without bringing it to a seller’s attention (52%).

Close to one-third of respondents lied about

5 Steps To Take Before Retirement

MoneyTips

Are you planning to retire within the next 10 to 15 years?If so, are you ready to take retirement preparedness to the next level?

Retirement is no longer an abstract concept when you reach your 50s. It’s important to take a closer look at your financial plans now, while you have time to make any corrections. Consider these five steps to ensure the retirement of your dreams – or at least avoid the retirement of your nightmares.

1. Outline Your Retirement Goals – What do you really want to do when you retire? Buy a retirement home on the beach? Travel abroad? Start an expensive hobby? It’s time to figure out how to pay for those goals.

Lay out your primary retirement goals and estimate the major expenses associated with them. Place those expenses on a timeline spread throughout your retirement. You now have an estimate of how your cash flow needs will change because of your retirement plans.

2. Rethink Your Expenses –

Video: 3 Secrets To Using MoviePass

MoneyTips

Have you tried to take advantage of MoviePass’s incredibly low price to see the latest cinema releases? How did that work out for you? Many have reported issues with the popular service, but there is a way to come out ahead. Watch our exclusive video above to learn three tips that Professor MoneyTips Jeff Hoyt had to learn through (bad) experiences to ensure that you win with MoviePass.

If you want more credit to sign up for a movie or television service, check out our list of credit card offers.