Category: Frugal Living Tips

4 Things to Do With Older Books You No Longer Read

If you Google the all-time number of books that have been published, Google will tell you it’s 129,864,880 titles. We don’t know exactly how they tallied this number, just like you have no idea how so many older books have piled up in your living room.

Is it time to get rid of your books? Are you wondering where to donate books? Have you asked yourself, “Can I make money with old books?”

Here are four ways to breathe new life into your older books!

1. Donate Old Books

The thought of donating books has probably crossed your mind, but you might not know where to start. Here are some ideas for where to donate books in your area:

  • Local public library
  • Public and private schools 
  • Community book drives or fundraisers
  • Goodwill, Salvation Army, or other thrift stores
  • Non-profit literacy programs
  • Prison libraries
  • Museums or cultural centers

If you’re not sure if a particular location accepts older books, call and ask! You’ll accomplish your goal of decluttering your home while passing on the gift of reading to others in your community.

2. Sell Your Old Books

You can definitely make money with old books, especially if you have any rare titles or editions in your collection. Older books tend to sell well on eBay, and you’d be amazed by what types of books sell on Amazon too. If you’re not sure what your books are worth, do some research to see what similar copies are selling for.

Another idea? Check your phone’s app store for apps that connect you to others who want to buy, sell, or trade used books.

3. Armed Forces Charity Groups

Would you like to support military members (and their families) who are deployed overseas? 

Give the gift of reading by supporting one of two organizations: Operation Paperback and Books for Soldiers. Your books will end up in military hospitals, rehab facilities, and personal collections.

4. Make a Vintage Bookmark

Here’s a fun idea: Why not save the spine of those old hardcover books and transform it into something magical? This is a great idea for older books that are too fragile or damaged to read.

Use a sharp pair of scissors to cut the spine of the book. Attach it to a piece of cardstock with glue and let it dry overnight. In the morning, trim the excess away and attach a tassel (if you like) to create a beautiful vintage bookmark!

If you have a lot of older books to repurpose, you could even turn this into a little side business. Selling bookmarks on a site like Etsy could be on your list of fun and easy ways to make cash.

 

Give Your Older Books New Life

Just because you haven’t read that stack of older books for a while doesn’t mean they serve no purpose. As we discussed above, you can donate, sell, or repurpose them and give them a second chance!

Looking for more tips for decluttering your home or easy ways to make cash? Keep browsing our site for more great thrifty advice.

The Best Places to Get Married

One of you popped the question and the other said yes, and now it’s time to get married! Planning a wedding is such an exciting time, but it’s also a little stressful. 

From wedding venues to exotic wedding destinations, when it’s time to tie the knot, you want the best. As most couples find out, the options are endless and so is the amount of money you can spend. 

Is it time for you to plan a wedding? Take a look at our guide to see some of the best places to get married. 

Orlando, Florida

May to September, Orlando is hot and humid but October to April is nice with few clouds and little rain. If you love sunshine and you’re a fan of the Magic Kingdon, Orlando could be the place. 

Have a casual beach wedding and then spend your honeymoon at Disneyworld. There are beach spots within an hour and Orlando’s overall costs are on the low side. 

Palm Springs, California

Want an outdoor venue with almost guaranteed sunny weather? Try Palm Springs, California. Here you’ll find sunshine most of the year.

Palm Springs has some beautiful outdoor wedding locations. There are plenty of venues that offer indoor and outdoor spaces so you can be worry-free if the weather should uncharacteristically be wet or cold. You can also have the ceremony and the reception in one place which saves you money. 

Your photographs will be beautiful with amazing desert backgrounds. There are also lots of accommodations from which to choose for your guests. 

Boston, Massachusetts

Are you an East Coast couple? Do you love tradition and history? How about Boston?

There are some amazing wedding venues available in this historic and beautiful city. Boston has a plethora of accommodations and lots for your guests to see and do in their downtime. 

Hood River, Oregon

Do you love the Pacific Northwest with its lush scenery and rustic settings? Hood River boasts several great places to tie the knot and lots of local vendors to round out your day.

There are a number of great accommodations and lots of recreational activities for guests to enjoy before or after the big day. 

Tuscany, Italy

Are you looking for truly memorable wedding destinations? How about a Tuscan wedding?

Tuscany has majestic castles and rustic farmhouses so whatever your tastes and budget, there’s something for everyone. You can even find a private villa for a small wedding. 

After the wedding, you’re in the perfect place for a honeymoon. Enjoy the architecture and art of Florence or stay in a charming seaside village. 

So Many Amazing Places to Get Married

There are almost as many places to get married as there are places in the world! It’s not easy choosing wedding and reception venues.

Your personal preference, budget, and number of guests set the tone for the type of wedding that works best for you. Whatever you decide, it’s one of the most memorable days of your life – enjoy it!

Looking for ways to save money in your new married life? Find lots of great tips on the blog!

 

 

 

A Handy Guide for Moving From England to Wales

For those looking for a new adventure, affordability, and a place not too far from home – Wales could be the place for you! Towns in Wales consistently rank in the top 10 most affordable places to live in the UK. 

But there’s a lot more to consider for your next big move than just the journey from England to Wales. Moving to Wales involves searching, finding, and general legal hassle. Don’t worry!

This guide will take you through all the things you need to keep in mind. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about your move to Wales!

Where to Live in Wales 

There are tons of great options for places to live, and of course, the biggest part of your move is choosing where to live! Let’s go over just a few of the nicest places to visit before deciding where you want to settle down. 

Cardiff 

While Cardiff might be the first place you think of, there are tons of places to consider in Wales. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t consider this hugely influential city as your next home. 

Cardiff is a beautiful city with many different options for housing. Something by the sea in the Cardiff Bay Area, or somewhere in a town surrounded by culinary innovation? The choice is yours! 

The Facts 

In general, Wales enjoys warmer weather than Northern Ireland and Scotland and milder winters than England. Cardiff experiences a significant amount of rainfall throughout the year and has an average annual temperature of 10.4 C.

Of course, Cardiff is one of the more expensive places to live in Wales, with an average home cost of £204,000. Cardiff is generally rated as a safe city to live in. 

Abergavenny 

This stunning town is a highlight for those who love to go out on the town for delicious eats. In fact, every autumn they host a food festival! Quaint history and a bustling town center contrast with a peaceful setting. 

It is a very small town compared to what you might be used to, but with good public transport, you will never be far from fun. 

The Facts

Abergavenny, like the majority of Wales, experiences significant levels of rainfall throughout the year. On average, you can expect 942 mm of rainfall annually. The average annual temperature is a little cooler, at 9.4 C. 

Abergavenny is a popular relocation spot but only has a population of around 12,500. As a result, expect an average home cost of £292,000. 

Penarth 

A little bigger than Abergavenny, but perhaps better located, Penarth is perched on an estuary near Cardiff Bay. As a resort town, there is no lack of luxury and enjoyment to be had by the water. 

Excellent public transport means you aren’t far from things to do if watching the sunset isn’t enough. 

The Facts

Penarth, being so close to Cardiff, has much the same climate as its bigger friend. Expect regular rainfall, averaging out annually to 1070 mm, with the same annual temperature of 10.4 C. 

If you’re looking to escape the bustle of Cardiff, the lower population of around 27,000 will suit you just fine. Being so close to Cardiff and in the resort area of town, you can expect average home costs to be somewhat inflated, around £375,000. 

Swansea

Swansea finds itself on the Gower Peninsula, or the first area to ever be designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in the UK. And Swansea is at the center of it all as a place for history, literature, and adventure. The Paviland cave is not far away for those who like a little excitement. 

It’s hard to beat this area for the enjoyment of nature. The best part is, you don’t have to worry about a lack of amenities as it’s the second-largest city in Wales! 

The Facts 

This beautiful area comes with much the same climate as the rest of Wales with lots of rain to keep things green (around 1300 mm per year!). The average temperature annually is 10.1 C. 

Swansea has a population of around 245,000 which is sure to keep you occupied. It’s also one of the cheaper areas to live in Wales, coming in at £189,000 for your average property price. 

How to Find the Perfect Property 

Now that you have an idea of where you would like to live, it’s a good idea to start looking for your perfect property. Let’s go over the steps it takes to find your new home. 

1. Create a Budget 

Saying “create a budget” is more easily said than done. You have to consider far more than property cost when looking at new homes. Compile a list of your expected legal fees, lender fees, and any broker or removal fees on top of your property cost. Factoring in various insurance costs is also a good idea. 

If you know you will need to borrow it’s a good idea to make an appointment to find out what kind of mortgage you can get, and factor that into your budget. Once you have everything in place and know how much you can spend, it’s time for the exciting part. 

2. Start Searching

 As soon as you have established your budget you should start looking. While not as many people are moving to Wales, the housing market can always be competitive. At this point, you should determine the main cities or areas you wish to live in. 

Estate agents or websites can help you find options within your budget. Estate agents will be able to offer you more specialized advice, such as whether there is good public transportation, whether living just outside of town can save you money, how fast the market moves, and crime rates for different areas of cities. 

You can book viewings of homes either in-person or virtually in most cases. It’s a good idea if you don’t live nearby to arrange a virtual viewing first before committing to an in-person journey. 

3. Seal the Deal 

When you have found the property of your dreams you can make an offer. Sometimes your first offer may not be accepted, but this does not mean you have lost out on the property in all cases. If you’re still interested, you can offer a higher price. 

Once the price is agreed upon you will receive a Memorandum of Sale to confirm the sale is agreed to subject to contract. At this point, you will need to find a solicitor to help you with the process of conveyancing – or the process of making everything official. 

At this point, finish your mortgage application and mortgage valuation (a confirmation that the property is worth the price they’re paying) if it applies to you. Then, move on to the legal process that the solicitor can help you with. 

4. All the Legal Nitty-Gritty 

This is why you hired the solicitor, so they can collect the title deeds and the contract that the seller has drawn up. The solicitor will be able to confirm everything that the sale includes, like boundaries. At this time they will be able to solve any disputes or alternations that might need to be made. 

The solicitor will also perform searches of the Land Registry and Local Authority to discover the planning history. At this stage, they will also discover and inform you of any nearby potential developments that could occur such as roads, drainage, or mining. 

When everything is ready, you will sign the contract and agree to the moving dates. The contracts will be exchanged and at this point, you are now legally bound to the purchase of your new property! If you haven’t already asked around for removals quotes, now is a good time to start. 

Now that the most stressful portion of the move is over, it’s time to get into the physical moving process. 

The Moving Process From England to Wales 

The process of moving from England to Wales is much more simple than if you were moving overseas. There are many moving companies that are happy to help make the process as simple as possible for you. 

At this point, you should start informing all relevant people of your change of address. Don’t forget to update any banking or financial areas of your life of your new move. If you have children, you can also start the process of enrolling them in their new school. 

It might seem stressful, but you don’t have to worry about at least one part of the process – the house removal. Britannia Cestrian is a family-owned house removals company full of experts ready to help you on your next big journey!  

What Else Should You Know? 

Did you find this article helpful for your move from England to Wales? If so, make sure to read more from our Family Life section! 

How to (Safely) Remove Chlorine From Water

Water is essential for life. You need to drink a certain amount of water per day. Drinking water will help your body function. 

The water you drink needs to be clean. It must be free of any substances that can harm your health. 

You can’t drink water that has chlorine. To drink it, you must know how to remove the chlorine. Read this article to learn how to remove chlorine from water. 

Removing Chlorine Through Evaporation 

A simple way to remove chlorine from water is to let it evaporate from the water. Chlorine molecules are diffused in the water. It means they scatter in the water. 

This helps it escape into the air. To speed up the process, you can apply heat. It helps to boil the water.

It’s a good idea to place the water in a container with a large opening. It helps to expose the water surface to the air better. By doing so, it’ll release chlorine faster.

This is a natural way to remove chlorine from water. It might take longer, but it does the job.

Neutralizing the Water with Chemicals

One of the best ways to remove chlorine from water is through the use of chemicals. Ascorbic acid is a safe chemical compound you can use for this purpose. 

Potassium metabisulfite is another good chemical to use. It comes in the form of small tablets. You can put one tablet in the water to dissolve so it can neutralize the chlorine before it evaporates. 

UV Light 

Did you know you can use ultraviolet light to dechlorinate water? Yes, if you have a UV light on hand, you can use it to break down chlorine. It can destroy traces of it. 

UV light is effective because chlorine is a light-sensitive chemical. The more you expose it to this type of light, the greater it’ll dissipate. 

Remove Chlorine Through a Filter

If you want to remove chlorine from tap water, you can use a filter. Run the water through a filter that will make the water safe to drink. 

There are different types of filters that you can use. Most of them use activated charcoal to remove this chemical. 

Using a filter is a safe and effective way to remove chlorine from water at home. You should consider buying a Big Bubba Water Filter. These are the best in the business. 

Use These Methods To Remove Chlorine From Water

If you need to drink water, but it has chlorine, you must remove it. You don’t want to drink water that has chlorine. It can make you very sick. 

These are some of the best ways to remove chlorine from water. After you use one of these methods to remove the chlorine, you can drink the water with peace of mind. 

Explore the rest of our blog to read more articles about being thrifty. 

Vacation Planning 101: Everything You Need to Consider

You’ve finally found some free time in your schedule, and you’re ready to start vacation planning! Where do you begin? There’s much to take into consideration when planning for a vacation. 

You’ll need to start by knowing what type of vacation you want to experience and where you want to go. Once you determine those major details, you can then begin planning the vacation as a whole. 

In the guide below, there are several helpful steps to take when planning a vacation. Continue reading below to start the planning process!

Become Familiar With the Map

A great starting point is to become familiar with the map of the area you’re planning to visit. Get to know all the different routes and locations around your vacation destination. Becoming familiar with the map of your destination can help you throughout the planning process. 

What places are nearby? What activities are more further out of the way? Use markers and highlighters to mark different locations you want to visit and routes you’ll take to get there. 

Create an Itinerary With Expenses

Now that you have a map in hand, you can start to create your itinerary. Your itinerary should include the dates and times of the places and things you want to do. It’s also wise to include all expenses with your itinerary as well. 

For example, if the family wants to go horseback riding while there, fit this into your itinerary and then include how much it’ll cost. This will help you plan financially. Don’t forget to consider a few summer vacation games to play with the family as well. 

Not everything you do on vacation needs to cost money. There are plenty of fun, inexpensive activities as well. 

Leave Room For Flexibility

Although having an itinerary to follow is important, it’s also essential to leave room on your itinerary for flexibility. Sure, you want to plan out each day so there’s always something to do and someplace new to explore. However, you never know what might come up while you’re there. 

What if you and the family are driving around town and find a nature park you want to stop by and explore? Do it! Don’t get too caught up in following an itinerary that you forget to be spontaneous. 

Research Your Destination

It’s never a bad idea to research your destination as well. Researching your destination can tell you a few things like what to pack or how to prepare for the environment. You can conduct research online or even by reading guidebooks. 

The more you know about a destination, the better prepared you’ll be and the more relaxing and enjoyable the vacation will become. 

Vacation Planning Starts Here

Your vacation planning starts right here with this very guide! Be sure to keep all these helpful tips in mind when you’re planning your next vacation. These tips can help you save both time and money during your travels. 

For other helpful and money-saving advice, continue to visit on a regular basis!

Family Dental Care: 4 Ways to Find Affordable Dental Care

Did you know that over a quarter of all American adults have tooth decay that hasn’t been treated by a medical professional?

If you want you and your family to have great oral health, then there’s no getting around the need for reliable dental care. However, it can be difficult to find services that are not overpriced.

Are you wondering how you can get awesome family dental care? Keep reading to learn all about four ways to find affordable dental care.

1. Read Reviews Carefully

These days, it’s easy to check out a wealth of online reviews on a vast range of dental care centers. The amount of information can be overwhelming, though.

You don’t have to read every single review, but it can help your search a lot if you read a few reviews per business. A place that has only positive reviews is both unrealistic and suspicious.

The best dental care team will have a wonderful score overall, even if there are some hiccups in the reviews every now and then.

2. Get Info on Their Pricing

Whether you need urgent dental care or regular visits, you should compare and contrast prices before setting foot in their building. Some dental websites will list the average prices of certain procedures, but that won’t always be the case.

In fact, prices can vary from mouth to mouth. If your procedure is more complicated, then you’ll end up paying more. This is why you should pay to get X-rays of your teeth and then bring them to several community dental care centers for price quotes.

3. Get a Consultation

After you’ve narrowed down your list to the best possible businesses, you should schedule a consultation with each of them. Highlands Ranch Dental Care, for instance, can assess your teeth and let you know what work needs to be if any.

You should not only pay attention to how knowledgeable they are, but you should also feel out how caring and kind they are. The last thing you’d want to do is see a dentist who is as rude as his or her staff.

4. Ask for Recommendations

If you’re still stumped about where to take your business, then it never hurts to ask family members or old friends. Chances are they’ve visited at least one dentist in the recent past.

They can help guide you by letting you know where they’ve had the most affordable and the most expensive experiences. From there, you can do more research before making a final decision.

Ready to Have Reliable Family Dental Care?

Now that you’ve learned all about 4 ways to find affordable dental care, you can make sure your loved ones are covered. Simply put, family dental care is a necessity. When you treat your teeth well, you’ll have fewer oral problems in the future.

Whether you’re invested in health, technology, lifestyle, or all of the above and more, we can keep you informed. The best way to avoid missing out on the latest developments is by bookmarking our site.

3 Signs You Need to Change or Clean Your Refrigerator Water Filter

Did you know that there could be all kinds of contaminants lurking in your home’s tap water? From aluminum and ammonia to silver and uranium (and everything in between!), it’s not uncommon at all to find at least a few contaminants in tap water.

You can greatly reduce the chances of these contaminants making their way into your body by utilizing a refrigerator water filter. A fridge water filter will remove any traces of these contaminants and prevent them from taking a toll on you.

The only thing you’ll need to do is install a new water filter in your fridge every so often. You will have to replace a water filter once it starts showing certain signs of trouble.

Here are three signs that will indicate that you need to change a water filter or, at the very least, clean a water filter in your fridge ASAP.

1. Your Fridge’s Water Doesn’t Taste Good

Have you noticed that the water that comes from your fridge doesn’t taste as good as it normally does? This is one of the first signs that will show that your refrigerator water filter needs to be replaced or cleaned as soon as possible.

Until you make it a point to put a new water filter into your fridge, it’s going to continue to provide you with water that will be offensive to your taste buds.

2. Your Fridge Isn’t Delivering Water to You Quick Enough

It shouldn’t take two minutes for your fridge to deliver enough water to fill up a normal-sized glass. If it’s taking that long, it could be because of water pressure issues related to your refrigerator water filter.

When a water filter starts to get old, it will begin to get clogged up with the contaminants that it filters out of water. This will stop it from being able to deliver water as quickly as usual. 

3. Your Fridge’s Water Filter Light Is On

If you bought your fridge within the last 10 years or so, it should have a water filter light that will turn on when it’s time to replace or clean your refrigerator water filter. You should keep an eye out for it and act accordingly when it lights up.

If you have a GE brand fridge, you should order the right refrigerator water filter for it and have it replaced.

Make Sure You Clean or Replace a Refrigerator Water Filter on a Regular Basis

Your refrigerator water filter will help to get your home’s drinking water as clean as it can be. But a water filter is only going to work well for a limited amount of time.

Once you start to see the signs listed here, you’ll know that you need a new water filter. You should spring into action and get your hands on one so that your fridge water filter can continue to work its magic.

Get more tips that will help you maintain your home by taking a closer look at some of the other articles posted on our blog.