Category: saving money

How to Save for a Vacation on a Tight Budget

how to save for a vacation

Vacations are expensive. Let’s face it.

How are you supposed to take an enjoyable vacation when you’re pinching every penny in your everyday life? There’s gas, plane tickets, daily excursions, food, and more. When you tally up the costs, even a camping excursion can rack up a large sum.

But the vacation you want to take could be the experience of a lifetime. If you have a family, you want to do your best to create valuable memories that will last. If you’re a solo-traveler planning to backpack Europe, it’s likely that you’re aching for that trip and are just seeking for a way to make it happen.

Here’s the thing: it’s entirely possible to inch away towards the sum you need to have an excellent vacation. Read on, and you’ll find out a few key ways to save money and put it away towards a vacation.

How to Save for a Vacation

1. Where are You Blowing Your Money?

It’s understandable to splurge a little on things like coffee and snacks whenever you stop for gas. We all have those little guilty pleasures that we shouldn’t be spending money one, but is that where you want your money to go?

If you add up the cost of your weekly spending on non-essentials, you’re likely to find that you’re spending a lot more than you had previously thought. Things like soda, treats, movie tickets, and the like are all things that be eliminated.

If you dedicate yourself to a year without, say, drinking soda, you’ll be able to save maybe a thousand dollars alone on that front. Not to mention, you’ll be a lot lighter for that hike through the Andes!

The most important thing you can do to save money for your vacation is cut out non-essential spending, and set aside the money you would use whenever you have a hankering for that bag of Doritos, or can of soda.

2. Garage Sale

It can be difficult to start saving when your vacation fund is meager. It’s a lot easier to set money aside when you can see the result of your frugality. A great way to get your savings started is by having a garage sale.

Gather up all of the stuff you don’t need- old clothes, microwaves, knick-knacks, whatever. Often times you can get rid of a lot of clutter while making a couple hundred dollars to tuck away for your trip.

A lot of times neighborhoods will have community garage sale days. These are great because everyone knows that there will be a sale, giving you a lot of traffic that you would otherwise miss out on. If you don’t have a community garage sale day, you can always advertise on Facebook a few days in advance to get the word out.

3. Pawn Shops

Pawn shops are often a place that your parents tell you never to enter. They rouse images of people selling their priceless items just to have money for gas or cigarettes. This is definitely not the case, and you can get some value out of the things that you couldn’t otherwise get rid of on Craigslist or similar sites.

Know that you won’t get the full value for your items. Resort to pawn shops only if you know that you’re not going to be able to sell your items to anyone else. Additionally, if you’re not having luck selling online and your trip is coming near, pawn shops are a great way to get that last little cushion that you need.

4. Get a Side Job

There are a lot of employers that are just looking for part-time work. If you already have a full-time job and you need a little extra cash, consider finding something that only requires you to work one or two days a week.

There are plenty of part-time gigs on Craigslist or Indeed, and you won’t be tied down to a commitment that you aren’t able to come through for. Another thing to consider is working for a delivery service, or taking online surveys.

You will find a lot of little side-gigs online if you do a little research.

5. Get a Separate Savings Account

It’s really easy to dip into your vacation fund when you need new tires or your old bicycle needs a tune-up. If you’re not in dire need of money, do your best to find out how to get the money you need in other ways.

Your vacation will never happen if you keep pulling money from your savings. An easy way to avoid this trouble is to create a separate account to save your vacation money in.

You can set limits on withdrawals, having a way to keep your money safe from yourself. If your wallet gets too tight you can always use the money for something you need, but if your goal is to go on a vacation try to discipline yourself and save what you want to save.

6. Seek out Deals

There are a lot of sites online that send email blasts with travel deals. Whether you need to take a survey or subscribe to a website, you may find a lot of discounts online.

Additionally, keep an eye out for plane tickets far in advance. You’ll often find the best deals if you’re thinking ahead and planning your trip a few months out. In fact, if you buy the tickets early, you’ll be more inclined to save that money and dedicate yourself to planning your trip.

Use the Resources at Your Disposal

There are so many great ways to find deals on vacations available online. Do some research and make sure to fine-tune your trip to your preferences and your family’s needs.

If you’re having difficulty finding extra money to set aside for your vacation, take advice from other people who have done it. Often times it takes that friend or individual online who has a special trick or trip. Be sure to look around online for advice on travel or budgeted living.

Tricks For Home Renovations on a Budget

home renovations

You work hard for every dollar so you can enjoy your downtime with family and friends at home.

It’s easy to get into a rut or to find that your taste and needs change as your family does. Home renovations are a great way to fall in love with your home again and maximize the potential of the space you have.

But with the average cost of a remodel anywhere between $18,000 and $36,000, it may seem like an impossible dream.

You don’t have to restructure your house to give it a facelift that’s practical and won’t drain your life savings.

Check out these 5 awesome tricks for home renovations on a budget

Saving on Supplies and Materials

There are several ways you can cut costs by being a smart shopper and doing your research.

Habitat for Humanity Restore

This is an excellent option worth looking into. If you’re looking for building supplies, cabinets, fixtures, and other renovation materials this may be someplace you want to check out.

You’ll not only get a great price on materials but you’ll also be helping a great cause.

Wholesale, Garage Sale and Online Sale

Shop around. You don’t need to go into debt to update your living room or brighten your kitchen.

Look for deals on discontinued styles, second-hand options and wholesale or overstock prices.

Garage sales can be an awesome place to find furniture, materials, and accents to complete your new look.

Make Money from Your Home Renovations

You may think that sounds improbable, but there are ways to make some dough while you complete your home renovations on a budget.

How-To Videos and Blogging

Why not film or blog about it. You could be the next online home renovation sensation with one viral post.

Make how-to videos and instructional blog posts if it turns out great. Many people monetize their blog or YouTube channel to maximize their return.

And there’s always America’s Funniest Home Videos, What Not To Do videos, and blooper reels that could be in your future.

Submit articles to online magazines to contribute content. Many pay for videos, pictures, and articles from freelancers.

Influencer and Reviews

If you already have an established blog or Instagram presence, you may be able to turn that following into savings.

Propose to local stores your willingness to review, promote, and provide positive social media marketing in exchange for discounted or donated materials and services.

If you’re planning on future renovations consider building your online following now so you can use your online presence as a bargaining tool when you shop for supplies.

You need to build some influence to be an influencer or have anything to offer.

Small Details Make a Big Difference

You don’t have to tear down walls and throw your furniture away to make a huge difference. Adding more effective lighting, unique accents, fixtures, and details can have a noticeable effect.

Often it’s not that people don’t have enough space; it’s that they don’t make the most of the space they do have.

What’s Your Biggest Issue?

Identify what you want to accomplish most with the renovation.

Do you need more space? More storage? Are you craving more color or more personality?

Once you know what you want, you can develop a plan to best accomplish that.

You may not need a whole new room added on so the kids have a place to play. It could be as simple as more storage, a craft or game table that folds up into the bookshelf, and some chalkboard paint for the rec room walls.

Energy Efficient Answers

If you’re looking to save money then you want to be more energy efficient. This doesn’t mean you have to install solar panels on your roof or start driving a car that plugs in.

You can make some small changes that will make a big difference in the long run.

Switch Off, Switch Out, and Unplug

Your energy bill may be sucking pressures dollars out of your budget. Americans spend $19 Billion on energy bills for idle electronics.

Unplugging appliances, electronics, and chargers when not being used can make a significant difference in your energy bill and that means more money for your renovation budget.

The average American household has approximately 50 devices, chargers, electronics, and appliances not being used that are drawing power.

Lightbulbs and Windows

Switch out your light bulbs for energy efficient ones and don’t just help the environment but your bank account too.

You can save as much as $75 a year by making the switch.

New Windows

While new windows may seem like a major investment, they are well worth thinking about.

They can provide a whole new look to a room and entire home. It may even be good for your health as it allows more natural light into your living space.

They can also save you a sizable amount on your heating and cooling costs.

If you shop around and talk to an expert at a store such as Renewal by Andersen windows and doors, you can find the best option for your budget and vision.

Putting the investment into new windows can save you a lot of money in the long run and increase the value and aesthetic of your home.

Upcycle, Paint, Refresh

A coat of paint, a refinished bookshelf that’s built into the wall or reupholstered furniture can give a whole new look to a room.

Check out Pinterest, DIY videos and other resources to develop a vision for the space you have.

A change in color scheme, new cupboards, shelves, and organization can be an easy way to make you feel like you’re in a whole new house.

Think about solutions like outside sheds, converting the garage into an office, or making better use of your unfinished basement.

Donate stuff you don’t want or use. Some places give you a discount if you donate enough bags. Then you can pick up new items to go with your new look.

Invite Friends to Share Their Talents and Time

We’re always saying we wish we could spend more time with friends and family. Why not do it while holding a hammer or a paintbrush?

You have friends with talents and skills. Put on a pot of coffee or crack open a beer and pick their brain for cost-saving tips.

Plan a barbeque or throw a summer party and build memories while you build a new kitchen nook.

Take Your Time, Think Outside the Box

You don’t have to change everything at once. Pick the projects that will bring you the most joy when they’re done and start with them. Set a budget and do your research.

Your renovations are supposed to bring your family happiness not create financial and life stress. Do one project at a time. Shop around and don’t just stick to the traditional frustration and debt of major home renovations.

Think outside the box and see the big picture. Smart choices can make a huge difference without creating a huge debt.

For great interior design ideas check out this blog post

8 Fabulous Date Night Ideas for Those on a Budget

date night ideas

Date nights don’t have to be all about extravagance and expense. In fact, some of the sweetest romantic gestures cost absolutely nothing.

If you’re looking for fresh date night ideas for you and your partner, and want to keep things to a minimal cost, we’ve got some excellent suggestions for you.

Whether it’s a cozy night in or you want to get out and about for an evening low in cost and high in romance, these suggestions are bound to give you plenty of great date night ideas.

1: Classic Movie Night

It may be a tried and tested idea, but simply staying in with your partner and snuggling up to enjoy a movie together is a cost-effective, romantic way to enjoy a date night.

But make it extra special by getting the throw rugs and pillows out and cuddling on the sofa together. Light candles and set the mood. Bring in a cooler for whatever you and your partner enjoy drinking on ice – beer, wine, even their favorite soda.

Once settled in, no-one should need to lift a finger. Make sure all your nibbles, drinks and anything else you might need is ready and waiting in the living room before you hit play on the TV.

Choose wisely when it comes to the film you watch. Different couples enjoy different genres. If classic romantic comedy is your thing, go for that. If a horror gets you cuddled up and hiding under the blanket, find something spooky for your night in.

2: A Midnight Date Night

Wait until the clock strikes 12 and head out together into the night, when everyone else is tucked up in bed.

Taking a moonlit stroll under the stars, somewhere quiet and serene, can be a lovely way to unwind and spend some romantic time together. Find somewhere you know is quiet and safe and head out together.

Take a walk around a moonlit lake, cycle around a quiet track or drive along the coastline. If it’s summertime, enjoy the warm evening air. If it’s winter, wrap up and enjoy the crisp chilly night.

As long it’s just the two of you, alone in the night, this can be one of the best date night ideas.

3: Friendly Competition

Date nights don’t have to be all serene and tranquil. In fact, getting a bit competitive can spice things up in a relationship. So why not break out the board games and enjoy a night of friendly competition together.

Battle against each other and set a forfeit. Maybe the loser has to do the dishes for the next month, or cook a fancy meal at the weekend, or wait on the other person hand and foot.

It’s a fun and low-cost way of enjoying a night together and injecting fun into your romantic time alone. And if you’re playing things right, you’re bound to become his secret obsession.

4: A Night of Planning

Perhaps you’re watching the pennies because you’re saving up for something like an expensive vacation or a wedding.

Make a date night out of researching and planning this together. Get the laptops and the magazines out and snuggle up by the fire, with wine and snacks, while you do some research for the event you’re planning.

If you’re traveling somewhere, take a look at the websites and brochures together and start planning. If your wedding needs arranging, begin looking at venues online and menu ideas.

These things are meant to be romantic. You’re planning these things together for an exciting adventure, so do it as a date night.

5: Ice Cream Night

Date night ideas that incorporate ice cream allow you the option of either staying home or going out. There’s something very cute about enjoying a sundae together. It’s very Danny and Sandy from Grease. And it’s not an expect way to pass an evening together.

If you fancy staying in, hit the local store and collect some different flavored ice cream and an array of sauces, sprinkles, fruits, whipped cream, and candies to decorate them with.

Enjoy a fun night experimenting together with different sundaes. It’s sweet, delicious, creative and fun.

If you’d rather gaze into other’s eyes over a Rocky Road, find the closest ice cream parlor and order your favorites. Sit back, allow yourself to be served, and enjoy an evening in each other’s company.

6: Open Mic, Karaoke or Improv Nights

Find a bar that hosts open mic, improv or karaoke and go there.

These places are often relatively cheap and the entertainment is light and fun, with a sense of group participation in mind.

Either use this as an opportunity to try something new or discover new things together, or see it as a way to get involved yourself.

Make sure no-one else you know is likely to be there. Plan to get up on stage and sing a duet. Or maybe one of you would like to dedicate a romantic ballad to the other.

7: Babysit Together

Not only is this free – you may even get paid to babysit someone else’s kids. Although this perhaps won’t be the case if you’re no longer a teenager!

But babysitting together is a cute way of spending some quality time with one another. Interacting with the kids you’re looking after can often bring out a sweet maternal or paternal side in you or your partner. Depending on the stage in your relationship, being around children can be a sweet way of getting to know one another better.

Then, the kids go to bed. And you’re left with a cozy night in front of the TV together, where you can simply relax and enjoy each other’s company.

8: Spa Nights

Treat one another by bringing in luxuriant items (not too expensive though) and have a spa night together at home.

Give each other manicures, pedicures, massages, face masks and so forth. This can be done cheaply. You can even make home-made remedies or face masks, adding to the fun.

Take a bath together with bubbles and candles, get into comfy robes and enjoy these treatments together for a relaxing date night at home.

Date Night Ideas

We’re sure that these date night ideas will give you and your other half plenty of chances to spice up your relationship and enjoy one another’s company trying something new.

The best thing about them is that you can have a fantastic evening without breaking the bank.

Have you got any suggestions to add to our list? If so, leave a comment below and share your favorite date night ideas with your fellow readers.

How To Save Money On Your Wedding Photographer

wedding photographerGetting married? Thinking about hiring a wedding photographer to get professional-quality pictures you can thumb through years down the line?

The one obstacle that prevents couples from hiring a photographer is the expensive fee they demand. What’s worse is that this fee continues to rise as time passes on.

As a matter of fact, the average cost of a wedding continues to increase each year. In 2016, the average wedding cost shot up to $35,329. A large portion of this goes to food catering, the wedding dress, and the photographer’s fee.

The good thing is you can reduce the cost for a photographer, saving that cash for something else like your honeymoon! To start, you should book a photographer ahead of time.

Book a Wedding Photographer Early

One good tactic to reduce the costs of a photographer is to book early. By doing so, you’ll have a monopoly on the schedule.The more you wait, the higher the demand becomes and photographers will charge a higher fee if their schedule gets too tight.

Most photographers will also give a discount as long as you can pay some kind of down payment. This discount seems small at first.

However, you’ll see how vital the discount becomes when you consider how you can use the savings to avail other photography features or to pay other wedding expenses.

How early should you book a wedding photographer?

Book as early as six to nine months ahead. If your wedding is in January, for example, book the photographer in July.

Limit the Coverage

Some people can afford a photographer for 10 hours. This often covers everything, from the preparation in the hotel to the wedding ceremony and then the reception dinner at night.

Do you need that much coverage?

If you don’t, discuss with your partner which part of your wedding you’ll need a photographer. Friends could take pictures of the reception but you might want a professional to take photos of the ceremony. Maybe you prefer it the other way around.

Limiting the amount of time you need a photographer will cut down the costs by a big margin. They often charge by the hour and according to the features you request. Take advantage of this and hire a wedding photographer only for a short period.

List People in Your Budget

When budgeting a wedding, you need to start with the costs for the legal procedures first. Got all that done? Work on your budget for the reception, gowns, suits, and floral arrangements.

Once you finish up listing the essentials, you’ll have a better idea how much money you can allocate for the photographers.

The next step is to look for photographers that fit the finalized budget. It’s always a good idea to start locally before broadening your options to photographers out of town. Local photographers won’t charge for their travel fees and accommodation, meaning you get to save cash on that front.

From that point, it’s a matter of looking at their work and seeing which wedding photographer gives you more bang for your buck. They may all cost relatively the same but some might offer better options or more experience and skill in the field.

Ask for Referral Discounts

If a friend or relative referred a photographer, make it a point to ask for referral discounts.

Some photographers will knock off $100 to $200 thanks to a referral. Make it a point to tell them who referred them to you and, if possible, refer the photographer to another couple getting married soon.

This referral system guarantees the photographers that they stay in business. Giving a discount is their way of thanking you and your friends for helping them stay afloat and build their brand.

Reduce the Extended Features

You also want to reconsider getting features like Same Day Edit (SDE) videos. An SDE is a video made using footage taken previously in the day. These videos often play during the evening reception dinner as a way to celebrate the event while the guests are still present.

They’re getting more popular nowadays, especially with social media platforms giving people the opportunity to share content in an instant. As a matter of fact, videos are so popular that over 500 million people watch videos on Facebook per day.

However, SDE videos are expensive. There’s a lot of effort put into these projects, hence the high fee. If you’re on a tight budget, you may need to remove it from your photographer’s to-do list.

While SDE’s are the most popular, there are other extra features you can eliminate to reduce the costs. Some of these include:

  • Group photos for each table
  • Getting both monochrome and color photos
  • Photography with special effects
  • HD video coverage
  • Printed photos

The last bit is one of the most important to consider. If you want to cut down the costs by a significant margin, keep things digital.

Staying Digital

Printed photographers aren’t as popular as they once were. Many film printing shops closed down in the past ten years and even Kodak stopped releasing their brand of cameras in 2012. You’ll only find a few shops that print traditional film.

This means hiring a photographer and asking for printed pictures is going to cost you a hefty amount of money. You can cut down your costs by keeping things digital. Let them send the photographs and videos through the Internet or on a memory card.

If you want printed photos, print them on your own when your budget lightens up. You can also invest instead in turning photos into paintings. You can check here for more info on how this works.

Discover More Tips Today!

With these tips, you can still get a great wedding photographer while saving money for other expenses. Don’t wait further and book a photographer today.

But a photographer is only the beginning.

If you’re looking for more tips to save cash and still have a memorable wedding, visit us today! We can show you how to find the right theme or help you decide if you want an extravagant destination wedding.

5 Types of Clothing to Look out for While Thrift Shopping

thrift shoppingThrift shopping isn’t just for hipster college students and extreme penny pinchers. Getting clothes and accessories from thrift stores can be a fun scavenger hunt that will save you a significant amount of money.

But not all thrift store clothes are going to be gems or ones that are going to save you much in the long run. There are certain items, however, that are almost guaranteed to save you money in both the short and the long term.

Keep reading to learn about the 5 types of clothing that you should look out for when you’re thrifting if you’re looking to save money and look stylish.

1. Brand Name Clothes

High end and brand name clothes are usually quite expensive if you buy them new. Thrift shopping for brand name clothes can save you hundreds of dollars if you can find the brands you’re looking for.

Certain brands are quite trendy nowadays, like Ralph Lauren and Adidas for example. However, brand new clothes from these brands can start at $50 for a t-shirt or even hundreds of dollars for sweaters and jackets. You just can’t justify those prices if you’re on a budget.

These same brands can be found in thrift stores for a fraction of the price. Usually, t-shirts can be as little as a few dollars and even jackets can cost less than 20.

Looking for and buying brand name clothes while thrift shopping can save you hundreds of dollars while still giving you the high-quality and trendy brands you want.

2. Jewelry and Accessories

What outfit is complete without some jewelry or an accessory like a watch or a hat? But nice accessories, especially jewelry, are expensive.

Thrifting for jewelry and accessories is a great way to elevate your style while staying on a budget. While the jewels and metals might not be super high quality, it is often hard to differentiate. That means you can stock up on cheap jewelry and accessories without anyone really knowing that they came from a thrift shop.

Thrift shops usually have huge stocks of jewelry, which gives you access to a wide variety of styles and products. The jewelry at thrift stores is also exceptionally low priced because of the high stock they have.

You can find necklaces, bracelets, watches, vintage pins, brooches, hats, rings, and more all at one location. Take your time sorting through the large selection to find pieces that really stand out and that can add an element of style to any outfit.

3. Men’s and Women’s Clothes

A mistake a lot of beginner thrifters make is only looking in either the men’s or the women’s section. Women tend to avoid the men’s section and men definitely steer clear of the women’s section.

But the fact is, each section has certain gems that would be missed if you didn’t look in both places.

The men’s section is usually home to many interesting graphic t-shirts, sweaters, and athletic wear. The women’s section, on the other hand, is usually much larger than the men’s section, which might give you a wider variety. It is also home to what’s seen as “women’s only” clothing items like skirts, dresses, and more form-fitting and feminine t-shirts.

Check out this website to learn more about women’s t-shirts and clothing items.

4. High-Quality Fabrics and Materials

Besides brand names, another thing you can save big on by thrift shopping is clothes made of certain expensive materials. Real leather, cotton, denim, wool, and linen are all durable and high-quality fabrics that can be expensive if you buy them new.

Getting thrifted items made of these materials will save you a lot of money while also giving you items that will last. Buying cheap, thrifted clothes made of cheaper material might be good in the moment, but chances are those clothes won’t last very long.

You’re better off buying clothes from thrift stores that are made of good quality materials. You’ll save money on the price of the item and you’ll save by getting a product that will last a long time instead of needing to be replaced soon after it’s purchased.

5. Shop Seasonally

This tip is true for both thrift shopping and “regular” retail shopping. You’ll usually get great deals and discounts on seasonal items at the end of that season.

For example, the end of summer would be a good time to go shopping for shorts, t-shirts, and swimwear. The end of winter will be the perfect time to look for thick winter sweaters, winter boots, and jackets.

If you think you get great seasonal deals at retail stores, then you’ll be amazed at the types of deals you’ll get at thrift stores. You’ll be getting huge discounts on already discounted items. You’ll be paying a fraction of what you would at a retail store and getting even more of a break because of the seasonal discounts.

A word of caution on this tip: the end of a season usually will bring a lot of people looking for seasonal deals. You want to get out to the thrift stores sooner rather than later to avoid everything being cleared out by other thrift shoppers.

Thrift Shopping Can Save You Money

Living on a budget doesn’t mean that you can’t have great style. Thrift shopping means that high-quality and brand name clothes can be yours for a fraction of the retail price.

Thrift shopping isn’t always easy. You’ll probably have to go to a few different thrift shops many different times in order to find some things that are name brand, high-quality, and your style. It can take some dedication, but getting high quality and stylish clothes for a low cost is definitely worth it.

Check out our blog to find more tips on frugal living. You can also find lists of helpful deals, freebies, giveaways, and coupons on our website.

How to Buy a Timeshare Cheap in 6 Easy Steps

how to buy a timeshare cheap

The timeshare industry is a multi-billion dollar market, and it’s only expected to grow in the coming years.

If you’re interested in investing in a timeshare for your family, now is the time to buy.

If you want to know how to buy a timeshare cheap, read on for six great tips that will help you save money and find the perfect place for your next vacation.

Benefits of Owning a Timeshare

There are a number of benefits that come with owning a timeshare and using it as your primary vacation spot. Some of the main benefits include:

Amenities

Timeshares offer a lot more space than hotel rooms. They also come with extra features that make them more suitable for long stays. For example, even studio timeshares feature fully stocked kitchens so that you can save money by cooking your own meals.

Larger timeshares may also come with living rooms, bedroom suites, and fireplaces. You’ll also likely have access to a washer and dryer.

The resorts themselves also typically come with several other great amenities. There are usually pools, hot tubs, gyms, and game rooms to keep your family entertained all day long.

Easy Access to Attractions

Most timeshares are located close to popular attractions. For example, timeshares in Las Vegas make it easy for you to get to the strip, and Orlando timeshares give you easy access to Disney parks.

In some cases, the timeshares also have shuttle services that will help you get to the attractions you’re interested in seeing, so you won’t have to worry about dealing with traffic when you’re in a new place.

Value and Flexibility

Timeshares allow you to save a lot of money on vacations. There’s no worrying about the cost of hotel rooms, so you have more funds to allocate toward attractions and activities.

There’s also a lot of flexibility with timeshares. If you belong to a timeshare exchange, it’s easy to swap units and explore new locations. It’s also easier to change the timing of our vacation to fit your schedule or group weeks together for a longer trip.

How to Buy a Timeshare Cheap

When you start shopping, be sure to keep these tips in mind if you want to know how to buy a timeshare cheap.

1. Understand the Different Types of Timeshares

First things first, it’s important to understand the different types of timeshares you have to choose from.

Some of the most common types include:

  • Deeded timeshares: This is an actual real estate investment, and after your purchase, you own 1/52 of a specific unit.
  • Right-to-Use timeshares: There are no rights of ownership; you only have the right to occupy the unit at specific times (typically one week out of the year).

Right-to-use timeshares also vary when it comes to the times during which you’re able to use the unit.

Some work according to a fixed time model — this designates a specific time when you’re able to use the unit. Others work on a points-based system. This means you can purchase points and redeem them for stays at a specific time and place.

2. Know Where You Want to Vacation

It’s important to pay attention to location and choose a timeshare in a place you and your family will actually want to visit on a regular basis.

For example, if your family loves beach vacations, you might want to consider these timeshares.

Or, if ski trips are more your thing, you’ll be better off finding a timeshare in the mountains.

Once you figure out where you want your timeshare to be, look for resorts that are just a little off the beaten path. If you buy a timeshare at a resort a few blocks away from popular attractions, you’re more likely to get a better deal than if you buy one right on the oceanfront.

3. Don’t Buy From a Developer

One of the best pieces of advice out there for people who want to know how to buy a timeshare cheap is to avoid buying from a developer. If you buy through a development company you’ll almost always end up paying more than the unit is worth.

4. Check Out Resale Sites

Instead of buying from a developer, check out online timeshare resale sites. People who own timeshares and want to sell them post advertisements on these sites. They’re often the best places to go if you’re looking for a good deal.

Some resale sites broker the sales for a timeshare owner, and others let the owners list the timeshares themselves. You can also check out online auction sites and online classified ads, too.

5. Look at All the Costs

Remember, the price of the unit isn’t the only number you should pay attention to when you’re looking for a timeshare.

Other costs you need to take into account include:

  • Assessment charges for renovations
  • Maintenace fees
  • Transfer taxes for deed timeshares
  • Transfer fees if buying on the resale market

Factor all these costs in before making a purchase. This will help you get a better idea of how much you’re spending and allow you to find the best timeshare deal, not just the timeshare with the lowest listing price.

6. Pay in Cash if Possible

Finally, if at all possible, it’s best to pay for a timeshare in cash. There are a couple of reasons for this.

First, interest rates for timeshare mortgage loans are significantly higher than traditional mortgages. They usually fall somewhere between twelve and eighteen percent.

Second, timeshares typically depreciate in value. This means, if you decide to sell it later on, you’re less likely to get as much back as you paid for it.

Bonus Tip

Since you’re saving money on your timeshare by following these tips, you have no excuse not to hire an attorney to review your contract. This is an essential step for people who want to avoid a timeshare scam.

An attorney will help you make sure you’re actually getting a good deal. They will also be able to thoroughly review the fine print. That way, you’ll be aware of any conditions that could end up costing you later on.

Want to Earn Extra Money to Put Toward Your Timeshare?

Now that you know how to buy a timeshare cheap, it’s time to start saving your money.

If you’re looking for some easy ways to earn extra money to put toward your timeshare, check out these tips today. There are tons of ways you can earn passive income to help you take the vacation of your dreams!

How to Save Money While Searching for a New Job

searching for a new job

As of February 2018, the American unemployment rate sat at approximately 4.1%.

Being unemployed and searching for a new job can feel undoubtedly overwhelming and stressful.

If you’ve been recently laid off, you may be scrambling around, trying to set your finances order, apply for new positions, and doing what you can to keep sane in the process.

You may also be stressed about all the upfront costs, such as interview clothes or gas mileage, that come with searching for a new job.

We’ve got you covered on the best tips for saving money during this stressful process. Let’s dive in!

Cut Back on Living Expenses

This should go without saying, but when you’re searching for a new job, money will probably feel a bit tight. This is especially true if you are supporting your family or experiencing a major wage loss.

Fortunately, there are several areas that you can cut back on. For example, can you reevaluate your grocery budget and eliminate or cut back on eating out? What about finally committing to cutting the cable cord?

When you’re jobless, every cent counts. You don’t need to be buying any luxuries or indulgences right now.

The only expenses to continue focusing on? Ones that are related directly to a job. This can include headshots, resume-building services, gas, your cell phone bill, and the Internet.

Anything else? Wait until that first paycheck comes in.

Upgrade Carefully

So, you’ve landed a few interviews, but you have nothing to wear? You were diligent and followed the guideline to cutting back on living expenses, but what if you desperately need a haircut and some clean shoes?

As we know, interviews are your first (and sometimes only) impression to show off what you got to your potential employer. If you look shabby, this may reflect very poorly on your potential performance.

With that in mind, you don’t need to blow hundreds of dollars on an expensive interview outfit or makeover.

Check out the local Goodwill or consignment stores near you. Many people outgrow their work clothes (weight change, pregnancy, change in styles), and so many of these stores have plenty of business casual clothing in stock.

No luck? Check out online retailer or apps like eBay or Poshmark where you can score some serious discounts. Or, just ask your friends and family if you can borrow one of their outfits!

As for your hair? Check out a local cosmetology school. You’ll get a polished new look at a fraction of a salon price.

You don’t have to worry about major hair disasters either. All students receive supervision and monitoring from trained, licensed professionals.

File for Unemployment

Before searching for a new job, take care of the financial matters from your last job.

You’ll need to file a claim with your state’s unemployment program to receive benefits. This means you should contact the program immediately after you become unemployed.

When you file your claim, you will need to provide information about your job, such as the dates you worked and the facility address.

It may take between 2-4 weeks after you file your unemployment claim to receive your first check. Some states work faster than this, but it’s important to realize that it won’t happen instantaneously.

And, remember unemployment benefits aren’t just for employees who get laid off. Many states offer benefits for fired employees, as long as the firing wasn’t due to intentional misconduct.

Get Your Healthcare Appointments

Were you procrastinating on that dental exam or a yearly check-up with your primary care physician due to a busy schedule? Well, now is the time to make those much-needed appointments.

If you are on an employer-sponsored insurance plan, you’ll likely receive your health benefits until the end of the month. Take advantage of the coverage and make it a point to schedule any needed appointments.

If you need to extend your coverage, you’ll want to apply through the COBRA federal program.

Hang Onto Your Receipts

Did you know that the IRS will let you deduct certain job-hunting expenses? Even if it’s not a ton of money, every little cent helps, right?

A few helpful deductions to keep in mind:

  • employment and outplacement agency fees
  • preparing and mailing resume or application copies
  • travel expenses related to looking for the job

You cannot deduct any job search expenses if there is a significant break between the end of your last job and the time you begin searching for a new job. You also cannot write off anything if you’re looking for a job for the very first time.

Furthermore, you need to itemize your expenses to receive a deduction. Currently, your miscellaneous expenses related to searching for a new job must exceed 2% of your adjusted gross income.

With that in mind, it’s a good idea to hang onto any receipts related to your job-searching expenses. Consult with your CPA to determine if you will qualify for any tax breaks.

Commit to a Disciplined Schedule

The best way to stay sane while searching for a new job? It’s all about the discipline and motivation that you hold onto.

Listen, it’s easy to feel burnt or discouraged in a tough job market. It’s easy to feel depressed or anxious and give up hope.

But, these are all traps! They only keep your spirits down, and guess what? They don’t put any more money in your pockets. Instead, commit to landing yourself a job by putting in a dedicated hustle.

Reach out to your network. Got outdated documents or cover letters? Follow the complete guide to creating your resume.

Set daily and weekly goals for yourself for applying to X amount of positions. Stay active and stay on track.

No, this doesn’t mean you have to grind it out all day. In fact, you should take routine breaks. But, if you treat your unemployment like a job- with disciplined hours and goals- you’ll be well on your way to landing a job in no time.

Prioritize (Cheap) Self-Care

It may seem counterintuitive to allow yourself to relax while searching for a new job, but stress reduction is critical for maintaining a positive mindset and attitude.

When you do land that dream interview, you want to go in feeling assured and confident, right?

Make sure that you’re still taking care of yourself in the meantime. This means eating a healthy diet, working out regularly, engaging in pleasant activities (like art, movies, outdoor activities), and spending time with people that you love.

You want to stay sane during this process. It will help you in both the short run and the long run, and you’ll be thankful that you took care of yourself once you land that dream gig.

Get Your Side Hustle On

Did you know that more than 44 million Americans have an active side hustle? As you’re searching for a new job, it’s important to think outside the box.

You may want to focus on a creative pursuit or other job opportunities that you’ve “pushed aside” because you haven’t had the time.

In today’s increasingly digital age, you can essentially start a side hustle with very little to no money.

In fact, many people find their passion and niche in working from home, and this may be just the time to plunge in and start your own business!

Whether it’s blogging or crafting, photography or cooking, you may want to consider investing some time and energy into your own side hustle. Who knows? It may end up becoming your next successful career move.

Take What You Can Get

If money is especially dire, you may need to jump on the first opportunity you can land, even if it’s not the ideal career.

Yes, this may mean working in a position that you’re overqualified for, but it’s important to say open and avoid being picky- especially when the bills need to be paid.

Look for businesses that are hiring for seasonal help, such as restaurants or amusement parks during tourist seasons and retail stores and malls around the holidays.

If you can only secure part-time work, take whatever you can. It’s always better to make some money than none at all.

With that said, it’s important to stay active and on top of your job search during your downtime. Your “what you can get” job is a temporary gig, and it should be treated as such.

Final Thoughts on Saving Money While Searching for a New Job

Nobody likes the frantic feelings that come with unemployment, but most of us will face the distress at some point in our working lives.

Stay focused, and stay the course. If you do just that, you’ll be back in the working world in no time at all.

Interested in learning more ways to live frugally no matter what your circumstance is? Be sure to check out our blog today!