Monday, October 17, 2011

Are You Living Above Your Needs?

Are you spending more money than you make? If so, then you're living above your needs. Maybe you don't know exactly how much you're spending. Try this! Make a list of everything you spend for one month. I mean everything; even if you spent 5 cents, write it down. After the month is over review the list. Look for patterns, look for items that you are spending money on that could be cut from your spending habits. Once you've reviewed your list, do a budget.

Start by determining exactly how much your monthly net income is. Then list all of your necessities first. Such as food, rent, mortgage, utilities, transportation, insurance, phone, clothes, savings, etc. If you find that your money is almost finished after the necessities, consider reducing your insurance and your phone bill. Do you really need that blackberry or iphone? Always ask what promotions your cell phone provider is having. There are always promotions. If you’re still strapped after reducing your insurance and phone bill, your rent or mortgage payments may be too high. If you’re renting you may want to consider getting a roommate or moving to a smaller place. If you own your home, contact your bank to ask what options they have to lower your mortgage payments.

Once you've taken care of your necessities, look at your wants such as cable, spas, going to the hairdresser, shopping, movies, trips, etc. Determine how much money you can afford to spend on these wants before you actually start spending.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


How do you feel about tipping? Should you tip every time you go to a restaurant to eat? What if the service is just horrendous, should you still tip. I always viewed tipping as a sign of getting great service. The more the tip the better the service is. So if every waiter receives a tip, what differentiates the bad, good and great waiters. What are your thoughts on tipping?

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Are You Paying Too Much In Bank Fees?

Are you tired of paying that monthly chequing account fee, and constantly making sure you have the minimum amount in your account to avoid that monthly fee? Or maybe you are paying annual credit card fees. Whatever fee you’re paying, you probably want to avoid paying it.
Banking fees cut into how much you could be saving every month. There are other options out there to avoid paying fees. First I would suggest contacting your current bank to find out what kind of account you have. Determine if that account is best for your needs. If it’s not, ask your banker what other accounts they offer. If you are a senior or a student ask if they have student or senior plans, often times the monthly fee is waived for these accounts.  If your current bank doesn’t have any account plans that suit your needs, shop around. Check out President’s Choice Financial and ING Direct, both offer free banking.
If you’re paying annual fees on your credit card, contact your credit card company and ask them what that fee includes. You may be surprised to know that you don’t want what’s included in that annual fee. Ask for other options they may have. Find out what credit cards they offer without an annual fee. Also shop around with other banks to see what they offer. While you’re speaking with your credit card company, why not ask them if they can lower your interest rate as well. You’ll be surprised how easy this actually is.