Paid By Cash- The New Addition For Our Family Home!

Guest Post By: Cynthia Guptill for Canadian Budget Binder

Hi My name is Cynthia Guptill and our story starts back in 2007. Join me on our life’s journey to find out how we Paid Cash for our Dream Renovation.

My husband Randy and I met in Calgary, AB,  when we were out there working alongside everyone else during the economic job boom. After we married I got pregnant and we both decided that the cost of living was far too much to try to raise a family in the city. We had to make some decisions for our little soon to be family. At the time we were paying a whopping $1100 a month rent for a basement apartment that met our needs but was far too expensive.

A photograph of my apartment, to illustrate th...

Soon after we found out about the pregnancy, my husbands great-aunt passed away. We later found out that she had left her lovely home to my husband in New Brunswick in her will.  The petite home is very nice and boasts one bedroom, which was fine for the two of us. The problem was we had one baby on the way (Connor, now 5) and another baby soon after (Sadie,now 3). So, there were four of us living in this one bedroom house,but we made it work!

Now with 4 mouths to feed we had to make our money stretch to keep out of debt. We learned how to budget every dollar and never used our bankcard. Once a week we went to the bank and withdrew our weekly budget in cash. Also each time our Money Master Bank Account was at $5000 we would withdraw the money to buy gift cards for our local hardware and supply store. We bought the gift cards because we felt that if we just put the money in a drawer we may be tempted to spend it.

Since we were lucky not to have a rent or mortgage payment, we continued to keep budgeting  our money. We decided we would stash away just as much as we would as if we had a monthly mortgage. It’s one of those out of sight out of mind type emergency savings plans but you know it’s there. As time went on our account accumulated enough cash to finally make our dream renovation come true.

We have recently built a 14 by 24 addition onto our small house, and we  PAID CASH for all of it. The addition to the house is still in the construction stages but we just finished with the new wiring and electrical upgrade. To date we have spent a little over $11,000  cash on the addition.

We will spend around another $5000 to finish off the project and we couldn’t be happier.  Yes, at times we are tempted to go to the bank to get a loan as it’s that easy to do, but we turn away.  We only have to look back at how far we’ve come since we’ve moved in our family home.  My husband and I are now 40 years old and we have one credit card that is almost paid off. It doesn’t get any better than that and we love our life!!

Connor is looking forward to his first sleepover in his new bedroom!

Would we do it over again? 

Of course, but we would never buy anything that we couldn’t save up the money and pay cash for ourselves.  I urge everyone to consider paying down your debt and building your life from cash every step of the way best you can. The feeling of satisfaction knowing that what you have, no one can take it from you if you miss a payment, is worth a million bucks to us!!!

Thanks for reading.


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Photo of House/Dollar Sign Courtesy of ;Copyright (c) <a href=’’>123RF Stock Photos</a>

“Paid By Cash”- A New Ring For A Canadian Firefighter at CFB Edmonton

By: Heather Ferarr

Mark and I got married in August 1996 at CFB Moose Jaw and purchased our first wedding rings at Consumers Distributing.  If you are too young to remember Consumer’s it was a shop you could go into and they had catalogues where you could pick items you wanted to order or pick up.  It was quite handy and convenient in those days. 

Consumers Distributing has since went out of business so those days are gone with computers and new technology brings a new era of on-line shopping. In the 80′s  it was a big deal to place an order from the well-known catalogue especially at Christmas time. Now we raise the roof to find a deal on-line without leaving the comfort of our home.

I took this photo of CH-118 Huey helicopters 1...

My husband Mark is a fire fighter with the air force and his profession has turned his wedding band into something less to desire. Mark is currently stationed at CFB Edmonton and our house has yet to sell here in Rural Nova Scotia. It has been on the market for one year now in hopes we sell to move closer to his work so we can all be together. I will be going to Edmonton in May to visit Mark an anticipated visit I think about daily.

I have not seen Mark since January 3rd and I miss him terribly. Mark will be heading to Nova Scotia in July for 3 weeks of family time. If our home doesn’t sell by then Mark will go back to Edmonton and we will stay here until the house sells.  Until then we will not see Mark until 2013 so we yearn to sell and put our family back together again.

We are on a tight budget,and Mark has hinted the last year that his wedding band is a bit beat up and had lost a stone. I really wanted to make him smile and surprise him with a new wedding band. He is a wonderful father and husband and works hard for our family and the people.

I debated how I would get Mark a new ring without him knowing and not helping me pay for it.  I started to budget $60 a month for my personal allowance but secretly saving part of the money for my special gift for Mark. I was at the mall with my son  one rainy afternoon and found myself outside the jewellery shop.  I was enticed in the store by the gleaming rocks frosting the window and knew I wanted to look for Marks ring.

mildly convex wedding ring, inside titanium, o...

After some eye-opening price tags I finally found a men’s  eternity band very similar to the one he purchased for me in Dubai.  The price tag for the ring was on sale for only $419.00 down from $719.00 which was a great deal. I decided to put it on lay away in November 2011 and every 2 weeks I would  put half my allowance $30.00 cash on the debt until I paid it off.  

I used the following ways to pay off  Marks new ring in cash!

I managed to pay off his ring just under $600 all in cash! I am proud to say it is now in my night stand ready to fly with me to Edmonton,Alberta to surprise my hubby in May. Now I am just hoping it fits as I know he will love it, he deserve’s this, I love him!
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Photos Courtesy of : Copyright (c) <a href=’’>123RF Stock Photos</a>

Paid By Cash In Canada- Bought My EMMO Bike-My Dreams Came True

Guest Post By: Janice Dicker

Janice submitted her “Paid By Cash” story to Canadian Budget Binder to share how easy it is to reach a goal when you put your mind to it! Saving is easier when you budget and think outside the box like Janice!

About Us

Hi my name is Janice Dicker and I would like to start out here and let you know that I’m disabled. I’m not ashamed of my disability and I’m working hard on trying to make ends meet with my disability pension along with my husband who is also disabled.

Together we  have a comfortable small house, a wonderful son, 4 dogs and a reliable car that gets us from point A to point B. The problem is this reliable car is costing us more money than we can truly afford. After paying the bills each month we use what money is left to buy groceries for the family. This is all the money we have and are unable to save for a rainy day.

I’ve thought of ways that we could maximize on what we have to save some money and create an Emergency Savings Fund  for when something would happen. I needed to come up with a way to put some money back into the budget.

The Idea

One of my ideas was that I really wanted one of the EMMO Electric Bicycles for some time now at a cost of $1100.00 plus taxes. An EMMO Electric Bicycle according to EMMO Inc is a stylish high quality electric bicycle that offers a safe and efficient transportation alternative for the majority of urban trips.

I kept thinking to myself that it would save us money on gas in the long run if I had one of these EMMO bikes. I could use it to go get groceries, go to my doctors appointments and basically get out and go riding each day when it was nice out. If you think about it this bike would really save us a bit on gas by not having to start the car each time we needed to go out.

Janice’s PLAN

I started working on a plan to figure out how I was going to save the money to get my EMMO bike especially when the money simply was not in our family budget. What I did was  I went through my entire home and made a list of everything of mine that I could sell. I would then be able to put the money towards my e-bike fund!!

It’s amazing what you can do when you put your mind to something and set goals. I have bought DVD movies and TV Series for a few years now and my collection grew to around 2000 movies. I also owned a gorgeous dining-room set that I had wanted for many years. It was one of those things that I “had to have” but once we purchased it we never used it. 

Once we moved into our little 800 square foot home after living in a 2000 square foot house we simply did not have the space to store our furniture.  Some of our furniture seemed too heavy and was beginning to make the floor sag in the dining-room. Something had to be done and our furniture sadly needed to find a new home. I ended up listing my DVD’s and our lovely dining-room set on Kijiji in hopes someone would want to buy it. After about one month I was lucky enough to sell everything.

It was a happy time in our lives as I now had the money to buy my EMMO bike. Mr. CBB asked if I had a picture of my bike and my response was “You better believe I have a picture of my bike, I LOVE MY EMMO BIKE“!!

I was also able to use some of the money to stock up on groceries so that we wouldn’t be short on food for a while. Our son was amazed as he didn’t think I would ever get my EMMO bike that I so desperately desired. There were others who didn’t believe I would get my EMMO bike and to them I say,”It’s easy to carry out your goals when you put your mind to something.”

With my new EMMO bike I go out everyday when the sun is shinning and the soft breeze blows my hair in the wind. I have gone from being a hermit not being able to get out because most times we didn’t have money to put gas in the tank to a free rein women. The EMMO bike has saved us a bit of money and I gained my sense of independence back.

I make sure I charge my EMMO bike every night and I head out every morning around town to get what I need to get done. I get 70 km per charge and it costs about $10.00 a year to keep my battery charged. One of the best parts is that I get 35 km and hour with the EMMO bike!!

This EMMO bike is not short on speed and I even take my little pure-bred Teacup Yorkie (Chippy) with me. He has his leather jacket, biker hat and goggles sporting it Harley Davidson style!


Harley-Davidson (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’ve learned that saving money for goals is attainable and sometimes you have to think outside the box to achieve goals like I did to get my EMMO bike.



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Photo Credit: Copyright (c) <a href=’’>123RF Stock Photos</a>