Savvy credit card use, table scraps, aging parents and finances, a financial fitness quiz and more.
Everything Finance — If you use credit cards properly, you may get rewarded. Two benefits include a strong credit score and fruitful reward programs. But Kayla warns that “while they (credit cards) can be useful at times, people often take advantage of their credit cards.” And the consequences aren’t pretty. Kayla should know, because she abused her cards and found herself in financial turmoil.
Now she’s smart about credit card use and provides some excellent tips that can benefit everyone who uses credit. Two that got my attention are: “Look Carefully at the Fine Print” and “Know Your Limit.” You should always read the fine print and never max out your cards. Check out her other tips.
Money Talks News — Here’s a startling stat: “About 30 percent of the food supply in the United States ends up as waste.” That translates to $161 billion. It’s embarrassing. I’m sure we can all benefit from this advice and start using our table scraps more effectively. I love the first one and do it often: “Boil down leavings.”
Just take your excess vegetable scraps such as carrot and potato peelings and freeze them. You can use a Ziploc bag. Once the bag is full, boil them down, or put them in a slow cooker like Donna does, and let it cook all night or day. Strain the veggies and use the liquid as a soup stock. Here are five generic items you can save money on and five others you should avoid using.
Money Ahoy — Let’s face it, as many parents grow older, they also grow more stubborn and sometimes confused. This combination makes discussing money matters difficult. As Derek notes, some parents view this conversation “as an intrusion or a possible loss of independence.”
He says “there are three good times” to discuss finances. For example, if you’ve recently made an important financial decision, like opening a retirement account or planning a will, start up the conversation using your situation and then ask them if they’ve done the same. Here are more tips on talking with your parents about money.
Money Ning — April is Financial Literacy Month and Miranda found a quiz released by CO-OP Financial Services. She includes it on her blog. It’s pretty basic. Questions cover subjects such as bill paying and financial goals. The answers provide a general picture regarding your finances.
Debt.com chairman, Howard Dvorkin, has created three Psychological Money Questions he wishes researchers would ask. He thinks it’s important “to ask probing questions about how people think about money, and not just how they spend money.”
The Penny Hoarder — We’ve all had those awkward moments, whether it’s speaking with your parents about money or, as Steve points out, “your first money talk with a significant other.” By the way, talking money with your “significant other” is extremely important. We’ve noted that marriages fail when couples keep financial secrets.
Other moments Steve covers include, forgetting your wallet on a blind date and receiving the bad news that your credit card was declined. He suffered through both situations. If you ever suffer the same fate, Steve’s advice will help you with the embarrassing consequences.