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Friday, August 22, 2008

Alternative Uses For Household Products

1. 10 Ways To Reuse Coffee Grounds. More than 50% of Americans drink coffee everyday-in fact it adds up to more than 330 million cups of coffee being consumed each day. If you are reading this article, you most likely fall within that 50%. Now that all the coffee is accounted for, what about all of those leftover grounds? They often sit until the next morning in the coffee maker, and then it's off to the trash with them! What if?.....just what if you could find something useful to do with them? Heck, it just may even save you a nice bit of money. Well your in luck, because we've got some great ideas for you. This article will cover the top 10 unusual and alternative uses for leftover coffee grounds....Read This Article

2.Wacky Uses For Jello. We all know Jello is a fun and popular dessert, and can be used in many recipes. But did you know Jello can be used to patch bare spots in your lawn, or to cure stinky feet? Yeah, I know it sounds a bit wacky, but there are lots of cool things you could do with Jello. And best yet these ideas really work!
These ideas are easy and convenient alternatives to often more expensive traditional products. So check out some of these articles and see for yourself what a treat Jello really can be!

"How To Make Jello Shots"
"How To Patch A Lawn With Jello"

3. Heal Acne With Strawberry Yogurt
This may seem a bit wild, but one of our viewers submitted this article so I put it to the test. My kid brother has suffered for years with the simptoms of severe acne, so I enlisted him to prove this remedy. I was extremely skeptical at first, but once I saw his happy face it was obvious it had worked......Read "How To Heal Acne With Strawberry Yogurt"
4. Grab Yourself A Cold One! You may enjoy drinking beer as much as I do (I'm not sure that's possible), but did you know that your beverage of choice could also be used as a key ingredient in delicious recipes? Or to rid your back yard of wasps? Check out some of these articles and see for yourself why our contributors believe this malty treat is for much more than drinking.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Easy Ways To Save Money On Your Home Phone Bill

These day's, with the soaring price of just about everything, you may be struggling to make ends meet. While you may not have the power to increase your wages, you can take some easy measures to decrease your bills. In this article I'll explain some ways you can substantially reduce your home phone bill, and save some money to help make those ends meet again!

1. Eliminate Services You Don't Need. Many companies offer bundle packages with all sorts of extras including: call waiting, voicemail, and caller Id. They tell you that these bundle packages are the "best value". If you use all of these features on a regular basis, than it may be a great deal for you. However, if you don't use them, you may as well throw some money out the window.

2. Use An Answering Machine. Okay, so you've thought it over, and think voicemail is something you really need. Wrong! Why not invest a few dollars, and go back to the old school answering machine. This could shave a few bucks off your phone bill every month, saving you money!

3. Use The Phone Book. Don't waste your money calling information for a phone number when you could easily look it up. You could even find the number in an online phone number directory such as for free.

4. Use Your Phone's Redial Function. Opting for automatic redialing and callback services can add unnecessary charges to your phone bill.

5. Use Long Distance Wisely. Long distance calls are often the most expensive part of a persons phone bill. To cut your long distance cost and save some money, try the following:

  • Call During Reduced Rate Periods. This is typically nights, weekends, and holidays.

  • Use 10-10 Numbers. Some long distance providers use these dial-around numbers, and may have lower rates than your phone company. Shop around and do some investigating. It all adds up to money kept in your pocket!

  • Choose A Family Plan. Family plans offer reduced rates to specific individuals or regions. This is ideal for anyone who makes frequent calls to the same people or places.

  • Dial 1-800 Numbers. When calling a company or business, you should always look for a 1-800 number instead of dialing direct.

  • Use Phone Cards. Prepaid phone cards offer the best rates. And usually the more minutes you buy= the more you'll save on each call. A prepaid phone card can save you as much as 90% per call when compared to your phone companies rate.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Ways To Save Money On Auto Insurance

1. Shop Around. There are hundreds if not thousands of auto insurance providers out there. Rates for comparable coverage can vary by more than 100$ a month. With that being said, wouldn't it make sense to get as many quotes as possible. There are several sites online who offer valuable free services which will allow you to get quote comparisons from multiple companies.

2. Take Advantage Of All Available Discounts. The types of discounts available will vary from state to state, and from company to company. Here are some that you should ask about:

  • Defensive Driving Classes. Insurance companies often offer a 10% discount on premiums when you complete a defensive driving course.

  • Good Student Discounts. A student with a GPA of 3.0 or higher may qualify for a discount of up to 25%. Dick Luedke, a State Farm Spokesman, says " young male drivers may especially benefit from this because their premiums are typically higher.

  • Retirement Discounts. When you retire you are likely to be driving less, and insurance companies may cut you a break. So be sure to inform your insurance agent that you have retired.

  • College-Kids-Who-Are-Far-Away-Discounts. If at least 100 miles separates your child from your car you may be able to save up to 40%.

  • Group Discounts. Discounts are available to all sorts of associations - military groups, your alma matter, and professional organizations to name a few. If you are employed by a large company that may also earn you a discount.

  • Safety Discounts. These vary by state. In some states such as Florida and New York, drivers must be rewarded for having certain safety features on their cars (anti-lock brakes, airbags, automatic seat belts, etc.). Certain ant-theft devices may qualify you for discounts as well.

  • Loyalty Discounts. Some auto insurance companies will give you a discount of 10% or more if you stick with them for a year or more.

3. Increase Your Deductible. The deductible is the amount you'll pay out of pocket when making a claim before your insurance will begin to pick up the tab. Increasing your deductible can decrease your premium dramatically. Raising your deductible from $200 to $1000 for instance, would likely save you 40% or more off your insurance premium.

4. Clean Up Your Credit Score. Like it or not, your credit report score will affect whether or not an auto insurance company is willing to insure you. And if they will insure you it will surely affect your rate.

"Someone who is extremely poor in their payment habits could pay 30% to 40% more than someone without those problems", says independent agent John Costello. Most people do not know this, but you are entitled by law to a free copy of your credit report once every year. To get yours, and for more information see my article: How To Get The Free Annual Credit Report

5. Drop Some Coverage. If your car is older, and has little monetary value, you may want to drop collision and comprehensive coverage altogether. Collision and comprehensive can account for 40% or more of the cost of your premium, and covers only your cars replacement value. If any claim payment you'd receive would not substantially exceed your premiums minus your deductible, than it is not worth it to carry that insurance.

6. Choose The Right Vehicle. If your looking to buy a new car, keep in mind that models with high theft rates and high repair costs will cost you more to insure.

5 Ways To Save Money On Homeowners Insurance

  1. Insure Your Dwelling Only. Lots of homeowners have the misconception that they need to take out a policy that covers the full value of their home. This is unnecessary. Your policy really only needs to cover the cost of rebuilding your home and any other structure on the property. After all, if a disaster were to occur your home may be destroyed, but the lot surrounding it is still there.

  2. Buy Auto And Home Insurance From The Same Company And Save. Insurance companies offer deep discounts when you insure both with them. Pet owners who are looking for pet insurance may want to use this method as well.

  3. Take The Highest Deductible You Can Afford. Raising a deductible from $250 to $1000 may save you about $150 per year. This may also discourage you from filing minor claims, which brings us to the next tip.

  4. File Claims As Seldom As Possible. The more often you file a claim; the more likely they are to raise your premium. If it is a minor issue it may be wise to pay out of pocket. This could save you money in the long run.

  5. Choose Pets Carefully. Believe it or not insurance companies could raise your rates depending on the breed of your pet. Take the Pit-bull for instance. This breed has a bad record of causing liability damages, and the insurance companies will raise your premium as a result.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Savvy Ways To Save Money On Groceries

  1. Don't Go Food Shopping When You Are Hungry! This will only lead you to make "impulse purchases" and waste money on extra groceries that you normally would not buy.
  2. Use A Store Card. Most grocery stores and super-markets offer discounts when you sign up for and use a "loyalty" card or "savings club" card. This is a great way to save money on groceries without clipping coupons.
  3. Clip Coupons. Browse through your newspapers and circulars for any special deals, and clip those coupons.
  4. Compare prices of the same product in different areas of the store. An items location within the supermarket can make a difference in it's price. For example, cheese is often cheaper in the dairy aisle than the deli because shoppers pay extra for it to be sliced.
  5. Evaluate Unit Prices. Usually it is more economical to buy items in bulk, but Not Always! You should always compare the cost per unit on both the big and small packages, and calculate which is a better deal.
  6. Buy Store Brands. The quality of store branded food items has improved tremendously over the years. Many store brand items now compete with major national labels. At least give it a shot, you may be pleasantly surprised. Buying store brands can lower your grocery bill up to 60%.
  7. Buy Frozen Foods When Possible. Frozen vegetables, fish, meat, and other items are cheaper than fresh foods, because they have a longer shelf life.
  8. Stay Away From Prepped Items, such as pre-sliced fruits and vegetables or peeled shrimp. These items have marked up prices or "convenience costs". Slice or peel them yourself and save money. It's these little things that add up fast and save you big money at the register.
  9. Avoid Items Displayed At The Checkout Line. Stores often feature single serving items such as pies and soft drinks. These items are usually overpriced, but can be tempting as you stand in line, especially if you are hungry!

Friday, July 11, 2008

10 Ways To Cut Energy Costs Around The Home And Save Money

1.Make Sure Your Home Is Sealed Properly. Once a year you should do a walk through with a caulk gun, and make sure their are no drafts coming in.
2.Don't Run The Dishwasher Until It Is A Full Load.
3.Use Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs. They may cost a bit more than conventional bulbs, but they use a substantially less amount of energy, and last for years. They will easily pay for themselves and save you hundreds of dollars a year on your energy bill!
4.Install Light Dimmers. This is a great way to control the amount of electricity being used, based on the amount of light you need at a particular time.
5. Unplug Devices When They Are Not Being Used. Most devices will suck up energy while plugged in even if they are not being used (ie: cell phone chargers, blow dryers, radios, etc.).
6. Clean Or Change The Filter In Your Furnace Once A Month. Dust and dirt will make your unit much less efficient. Filters are very cheap, and having a clean one will save you lots of money.
7. Install A Programmable Thermostat. You can lower your heating and cooling costs by about 10% just by programming the thermostat to adjust itself during certain times of the day. Click here for a video guide to installing programmable thermostats 8. Make Sure Your Attic Has Adequate Insulation. Install more insulation if necessary. This will save you hundreds of dollars each year on your heating and cooling costs. And the cost for the materials and labor are tax deductible!
9. Take Showers Instead Of Baths. A bath uses many more gallons of water than a shower does.
10. Use Cold Water For Laundry. Their are cold water detergents on the market that will get your clothes as clean as they would be if you had used hot water, but will save you money on your energy bill!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Save Money At The Gas Pump! The Savvy Saver Way

Today I paid $4.15 for a gallon of regular!Ouch! When is this pain going to stop?
We'll let's face it the national average for a gallon of gas is near four dollars! With the cost of crude oil steadily rising, it is unlikely gas prices will ever come down. In fact they are almost certain to continue climbing!
Here are some really simple measures you can use in your everyday life to save money at the gas pump. Trust me it adds up. You'll save hundreds of dollars a year on gasoline.

1.Keep Your Vehicle In Great Shape
*Keep your tires inflated to the recommended pressure. Under inflated tired waste fuel.
*Check your spark plugs, and replace if necessary.
*Change your oil routinely.
*Have your vehicle checked regularly for balance and alignment.

2.Be Smart At The Gas Pump
*Pay with cash if the gas station charges a fee to use a credit card.
*Buy the lowest grade of gasoline that is appropriate for your vehicle. This information can be found in your owners manual. Higher than recommended grades will not provide any benefits to you. You are basically throwing your money away!
*Put that gas cap on tight! Gas can easily evaporate if it has even the smallest of openings for which to escape. If you don't believe your cap is fitting snugly and providing an air-tight seal, it's time for you to purchase a new one.

3.Some Things You Can Do Before Driving:
*Plan your trip. Avoid driving in rush hour traffic if possible. An engine idling in traffic burns much more gas than if it were just cruising along.
*Complete multiple tasks in one trip. For example: If you know can pick up your groceries on the way home from work do it. Try to consolidate tasks and eliminate unnecessary trips. Starting a car with a cool engine will consume much more gas than it would if the engine was still warm.
*Get that junk out of the trunk! An extra 100 lbs of cargo can decrease your fuel efficiency by about a mile per gallon! Carry only the emergency items needed.
*Avoid long warm ups. Even on a cold morning 60 seconds is plenty of time to warm up your car. If your warming your car up any longer Stop! You will quickly notice the gas savings, and will be filling the tank less frequently.

4.Some Things To Do While Driving:
*Slow Down. Avoid rapid acceleration and sudden stopping. These conditions cause the engine to work harder and as a result burn more gas faster. When traveling on the highway use cruise control features whenever possible. This will increase your mpg (miles per gallon)rating.
*Remove snow tires when driving in good weather.

Wake Up And Smell The Savings! The Savvy Saver Way!

Many of us coffee drinkers have gotten caught up in the craze of overpaying for coffee. Chances are if you are a coffee drinker your first stop in the morning is a Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, or other coffee shop.
The average cost for a large cup of coffee at one of these shops is about two dollars. And that's just for the regular plain old coffee. Some of you I'm sure are hooked on these "designer coffees" (cappocinno, lattes, espresso, etc.) which can enter the 3-5 dollar range.
Okay, so for the sake of simplicity we'll just assume you are buying just one cup of regular coffee peer day. So lets do a little math here:

1 cup of coffee per day.........................$2.00 per day
$2.oo per day x 30 (avg days in a month)........$60.00 per month
$2.00 per day x 365 (days in a year)............$730.00 per year

Wow! Seems like alot of money huh? Let's see if we can tighten our belts a bit, and maybe save a few dollars. How about if we start brewing our own coffee at home. Lets see if that will cut those numbers down a bit. For this example we will break down the cost of a cup of coffee when brewed at home with items purchased at

Folgers Classic Roast 39oz(makes 120 16oz cups)...$9.85 or 8 cents per 16oz cup
BrewRite coffee filter 700ct pack.................$2.34 or less than 1 cent each
Domino Sugar 25 lb bag(approx.2yr supply).........$10.74 or about 1 cent a day
Coffee Mate creamer 50oz (approx. 1yr supply).....$6.12 or about 2 cents per day
Total cost per 16oz cup.......................... $0.12
Cost per month...$3.60 a savings of $56.40 per month!
Cost per year...$43.80 a savings of $686.20 per year!

That's alot of money you could be saving with little effort and sacrifice. So just think what you could do with that $686 every year.