Friday, August 26, 2011

Save on Electricity

Most college students probably won't have to worry about this for a while, but if you care for the environment or already pay your own electricity bills, here are some tips to cut down on your usage (and of course, costs).

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Encourage Healthy Eating Habits

Sometimes, what's good for our health is also good for our wallets.  Here are some tips for what healthy choices you can make that also cut down on costs.

In general, shopping at grocery stores instead of eating out will cut down your food expenses and also be healthier.  Learning how to cook on your own will allow you to control what goes into your food so that you can more carefully monitor how much sodium and sugar you get.  Fruits and vegetables are high in fiber and can help you feel more full more quickly.  Some of the most nutritious foods are quite low in cost such as bananas, carrots, potatoes, whole-wheat flour, and dried beans.  There are people who think fruits and veggies are too expensive, but these same people might spend $3 on a pound of candy rather than $1 on a pound of bananas.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011


This post is probably not as applicable for my peers, so I understand that the majority of people won't benefit as much from this post (which is why I'm putting it up in the middle of the week), and my blog doesn't get much traffic anyway.

But, if you aren't a frequent texting fiend (which most high school and college students are) and you have a wifi device (such as an iPod touch) with easy access (such as on a college campus), then you could save $10-30 a month by dropping your text plan and signing up for text free (or your parents could save it in which case most students would probably stop reading here).  It is an app in the apple store which lets you text any phone number through a wifi connection.  The savings is fairly significant, accumulating up to a few hundred dollars a year.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Taking Advantage of Bonuses

Often times, there are a lot of great deals you can take advantage of as a new customer.  I wanted to specifically look at some of the bonuses you can get at banks.  There are often lots of incentives if you open a new checking account or a credit card.  While lucrative, you often have to pay attention to the fine print.  For credit cards, make sure you aren't getting a card with an annual fee.  I can't even count how many offers I get from airline credit cards every year, but all of them have annual fees.  There are options out there that don't have an annual fee, but still give great introductory bonuses.  Some of them depend on fulfilling another criteria.  For example, the Chase Freedom card has several promotions floating about.  You can either get $50 with the card after your first purchase or $200 if you spend $500+ on it within the first 3 months.  If you plan on spending $500 in the next 3 months, why not get the card and get 40% of that back?  Bank of America also has a $50 cash back offer (after spending $100 within 60 days) with one of their new cards which also gives 2% back on groceries and 3% back on gas.  Of course, this all assumes that you are responsible with credit cards already and you won't be tempted to overspend.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Sell-off as U.S. Rating Drops

I apologize for not updating this past week.  I've been pretty busy but apparently, so has the market.  I am trying to get some more personal finance posts up but until then, I thought I'd point out the current stock market's performance.  Over the weekend, the S&P downgraded the U.S. credit rating to AA+ from AAA.  Nothing has fundamentally changed these past two days, but with the market today, the S&P is down more than 6% and this is on top of a 5% drop last Thursday.  Equities are getting to look very attractive.  Professor Siegel came on Bloomberg earlier today and said that unless you believe there is going to be a double dip recession, stocks are looking very cheap.  Will the market continue to drop another 5%?  Potentially.  Could this be the bottom and everything will rebound from here?  Possibly.  In the short term, it is almost impossible to time the bottoms in the market, but for those people who are looking to put away some cash for the long-term, now is a great time to get in, even if its just a little bit.