All posts filed under: Budgeting

Maldives on the Cheap: Budget Luxury Guide

Originally posted on Stylishwanderer.com:
The Maldives is one of those countries I never imagined I would be able to visit. It was only a dream Paradise Travel Destination of mine for ages. If you asked me 8 years ago if I would like to go to Maldives, I would probably just laugh not because there’s something wrong with the idea of being there, in fact, it’s my dream but because I knew it would never ever going to happen.There are only three things which I know about the Maldives. First, it’s an Archipelagic Nation in the middle of the Indian Ocean. Second, it has lots of Private Luxury Resorts that I could never afford. Third, it’s damn expensive to go and stay there. But I guess, the Universe has a way of surprising me. Before I knew it, I found myself on a wooden platform at the balcony of an over-the-water bungalow while starring at the horizon and enjoying the scenic view of the brilliant turquoise blue ocean. Maldives was no longer a dream for me, but when I was there, It felt…

4 Vital Points for a Cheaper Japan Travel

Originally posted on Stylishwanderer.com:
Japan has an image of being one of the most expensive countries in the world, and if you’re staying in hotels, eating out, and traveling around a lot, then it can really cost you a bomb. It is never going to be as cheap as other destinations and while it may be an expensive country to visit, there are plenty of ways to make this country affordable. To me, budget travel is value travel. So, I have listed 4 vital points on how you can cut down the costs and make this country affordable: 1.) TRANSPORTATIONTransportation is one of the most expensive aspects of travel in Japan and this will surely eat up your pennies. The bullet train, while awesome, comfortable, and fast, is not cheap at all. Individual rail journey can cost hundreds of dollars when added altogether. So in order to reduce your train costs, get a Japan Rail (JR) pass.I repeat, do get a JAPAN RAIL PASS and here’s my BIG NOTE: You only can buy this pass outside of Japan and only people on…

How to Deal with Money Personality Differences in Relationships

We are all created differently. Our differences is what helps us grow, change and adapt. By learning from each other, we not only see the importance of relationships, but appreciate others strengths as they help us in building our weaknesses. Your strength may be someone else’s weaknesses and many times we tend to be attracted to people that complement our strengths and weaknesses. Money is no different. Generally speaking, we can categorize people into groups: saver and spender. I hate grouping people, or making generalizations, but in some circumstances like these, it will have to do. Of course not all spenders are bad with managing their money and saving, and not all savers are hoarders of cash and hate to spend. With that being said, I will generalize and conclude that in my household, I am the saver in the relationship and Mr. MMC is the spender. This has its benefits and drawbacks of course. As I learn each day to let go of some coin from time to time (…okay I am not that…

How We Eat [Healthy] For $75 A Week

Happy Monday, people! Are you heading to work for the week? Starting out with a meal prep Monday so you can crush your nutrition goals? This post is a teensy bit long but it’s something I get asked about a LOT so I promise it is packed full of helpful info 🙂 I have written before about? Our Dave Ramsey Adventure? and how it changed our lives. If it weren’t for budgeting and planning, we would not have had the beautiful wedding we did, and we would probably have struggled a lot more in our marriage. We started our budget using this worksheet. And quickly learned that according to the suggested percentages we were WAY overspending on food. Based on our goals and initial income, we decided $300 was a good monthly rate for groceries. I shop weekly, so we budgeted that as $75/ week. Just for reference, I was spending probably $100-$120 by myself prior to moving in with Keaton, so this was huge adjustment. However, I have learned lots of tips and tricks…

What it Would Cost Us to Buy a $500k Home

Ok. So this is probably the longest post I have done so far so bear with me. Now that we are debt free, the questions we keep getting asked from family and friends is ‘when are we going to buy a place of our own?’ My natural reaction to this question is to say ‘can I get some breathing room please…we just paid off $120k in 2.5 years and are building our savings while having some fun’. But instead I say ‘we will see, we are not in a hurry’. And that is pretty much the truth. I think I highlighted some of the reasons why my husband and I are content with renting for now in my previous post. Some of the benefits we get out of renting include: Being able to save 30%-43% of our take home pay each month towards both short & long term savings like our ETFs, DRIPS (dividend income is the best), mutual funds with low MERs, GIC’s and basic savings account. This percentage does not include the 5%…

How to Save Money for Travel Even if You’re Flat Broke and Living Paycheck to Paycheck

Originally posted on roamwildandfree:
“There was nowhere to go but everywhere, so just keep on rolling under the stars.” – Jack Kerouac Long-term traveling is a lifestyle that is more feasible than one may think. Today we live in a society where it’s quite common to live outside our means, acquire debt, live paycheck to paycheck and not be financially stable. Alex and I aren’t rich monetarily. We don’t have some ghost of a backer funding our travel. We’re not sponsored. But we somehow manage to travel at least 8 months out of every calendar year. How do we do it? It’s simple. We are simple people who live simple lives and prioritize so that we can roll around in our 16 year old van drifting with the wind living a life we believe in. In love with life at Canyonlands National Park. ? If you’re serious about wanting to travel long-term, read on for all our money-saving tricks!!  ? EATABLES Stop buying drinks. And I mean anything that isn’t water. Included in this is alcohol,…

Why We Have HSAs and You Should Too!

Originally posted on Millennials making cents of money:
Health Savings Accounts (HSA) are one of the most misunderstood parts of employee benefits today. HSAs are individually owned bank accounts that work in conjunction with your health plan – your health plan does have to be HSA compatible, traditionally referred to as high deductible health plans (HDHP). Don’t be afraid of ‘high deductible’ – yes, we understand that you could pay more out of pocket. But hopefully, as a healthy young person, you don’t have high out of pocket health care costs.  And if you do, simply save your receipts and pay yourself back at any time. We covered a lot of the basic HSA info in an earlier post, check it out here. Sp why do we think it’s a good financial move for millennials to have an HSA? You get tax-deferred treatment! Be aware of the annual limits, but any money you contribute (through employee payroll deductions or direct deposits) are eligible deductions. Your HSA stays with you when you change jobs, so you…

10 Reasons Why You Should Get Rid of Your Student Loan Debt Quickly

It’s funny the things you remember when you are younger, which at the time you feel have no significance. I remember sitting in my Grade 12 calculus class, it was the final semester before high school graduation. By then, everyone had picked out their schools and had either been accepted or not. The feeling of independence, a sense of accomplishment and the eagerness to experience college/university life had filled the classroom. I then distinctly remember my teacher talking about how we would all probably need to get a student loan to attend post-secondary, how he just finished paying off his student loan last month and how it took him over 12 years to pay off. Although I did not have any understanding about personal finance back then, there was something really depressing about his comment. Granted he wasn’t an old teacher. He was probably in his early 40’s but when you are 17-18 years old….that’s old. I remember thinking to myself, 12 years to pay off a student loan, that’s crazy. He never told us…

How to Deal with Debt Without Ruining Your Relationship

Originally posted on Millennials making cents of money:
Relationships can be hard enough, add money to the mix and it can be disastrous. Today, many millennials have student debt, credit card debt, auto loans, etc.  For the few that don’t, the odds are against you for finding a partner who doesn’t have any debt.  That doesn’t mean it’s impossible or that you shouldn’t date someone with debt. It just means you need to figure out how to talk about/manage debt before it becomes a problem to the relationship. Toni Coleman, a psychotherapist and relationship coach in McLean, Virginia, says she frequently sees couples dealing with problems such as hiding debt from each other, blaming each other for their dual debt and “an attitude of ‘yours’ and ‘mine,’ which keeps the couple from working together on a solution.” As a couple, you must work through the debt together. Here are steps to help you with this process: Be honest. Some people feel they need to be ashamed of this debt, but let’s be real, college costs a…

3 Steps to Getting Out of Debt that Actually Work

A big reason why many people struggle with changing money habits is like other behavioral habits, they are ingrained in us. Whether you are a saver or a spender or somewhere in between, we all struggle with changing habits, including how we view and spend our money. Stanford Professor and Psychologist BJ Fogg has some great literature on changing tiny habits over time to create lasting changes. Many of the overall concepts he talks about I have used in this post to highlight some of my experiences and changes in behavior with money. So how does someone set financial goals and actually stick to them? Why do we set some goals, have the best intentions of following through with them, and then never quite seem to reach them? We may genuinely want to make a change in our lives, but what stops us? Well, I based on my own experience and learning from others, here is what I think: We are too general with our goals. For example: many of us want to “get out…