3 Budget Negotiations That Saved Us Money : Our March 2016 Budget Review

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YOUR MONEY WON’T WORK BY ITSELF SO GIVE IT A PUSH   Treat your finances like you own a company and you are the CEO. Budget negotiations should be part of everyone’s financial plan not just the government and business owners. You may be working for someone else making them rich but when it comes to your money there are ways to achieve the same successes but on a personal level.  It’s amazing how many people take their budget for granted and accept the bills they are given instead of putting the green light on budget negotiations. You’ve worked hard for your money now make your money work for you. Don’t let your cash float away without seeing how much you can save. You don’t have to be an outspoken customer to get a better deal. Before you attack (take that with a grain of salt) you must be armed with details and the outcome you’d like from your budget negotiations. If you need to balance your budget but you’re off by $50 try to see if you can get your bundled-telecommunications services lowered. Make a deal. The top way to trim budget expenses is by negotiating the interest rates […]

grocery game monthly challenge

A Smart Shopper Guide To Prepare For The Grocery Store : The Grocery Game Challenge 2016 #4 Mar 28-Apr 3

A SMART SHOPPING GUIDE FO PREPARE FOR THE GROCERY STORE

GROCERY SHOPPING WITH MR. & MRS. CBB + Jr.   If you want to become a smart shopper plan to invest time into your grocery shopping experience otherwise you’ll be spending money you don’t need to spend and saving less than you should be. Knowing the ropes when it comes to the grocery store is a big deal especially if you are on a tight budget. A fan asked me how they could become a smart shopper like my wife and I have become over the years which caught me off guard. I thought I’ve shared just about every smart shopper trick that I could think of over the years but I haven’t shared exactly what we do. I’m putting together this post to share how we go about grocery shopping to keep our monthly budget at $235 a month for 2 adults and one toddler. I hope by the end of reading this post you feel as if we all grocery shopped together. My aim is to virtually take your hand to have you become a smart shopper by following grocery tricks we’ve learned over the years. Related: The Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide (Become a Smart Shopper with tonnes […]

grocery game monthly challenge

How We Downsized Our Food Costs By 41% To Fit Our Budget: The Grocery Game Challenge #1 Dec 7-13, 2015

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WE HAD NO IDEA WE WERE SPENDING SO MUCH MONEY   Every year since starting The Grocery Game Challenge back in 2012 we have evaluated our food costs in accordance to our overall budget. Before then we were just two people in a loving relationship renting and grocery shopping like every other frugal couple, so we thought. Although we were just starting to clip coupons but not heavily stockpiling we also followed the sales. We were spending on average around $400 a month which only continued to increase. That might not seem like much to you but for us that was a huge amount to be spending on groceries for 2 people. Since we were saving for the down-payment on our first home saving money was critical to keep costs low. You may think you are doing well with all the grocery savings but all that money adds up every month whether you got a deal or not. When we bought our home in 2009 it was just shortly after the coupon craze hit Canada and everyone was going mad for free or near free deals, including us. Yes, we joined in on the fun because we wanted to save […]

Should the wealthier sibling have a financial obligation to help the parents? : The Saturday Weekend Review #143

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EMOTIONAL BULLYING CAN LEAVE SCARS   Dealing with financial obligation is a big deal for just about everyone because without money it’s hard to pay for all those things you have budgeted. When you have kids you have a financial obligation to care for them and make sure they are kept safe. Nowhere do I ever remember reading that we have a financial obligation to care for our siblings and parents “wants” just because we earn more money than they do. I received an email from a fan who is clearly upset about the way his brother is treating him and hopes that maybe we can all shed some light on the definition of financial obligation surrounding family and who should pay for what or if anything at all.   Family financial obligation dilemma   Hi Mr.CBB, I’m hoping you can clear up an argument my brother and I are having about our parents. Our parents are not wealthy and when they retire they will have some retirement savings and their house to sell so they can downsize so they can afford to live. The problem is they always need something done around the house whether it’s the roof or […]

Would you take half your spouses bonus as a stay at home parent? : The Saturday Weekend Review #123

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YOU WORK HARD FOR YOUR MONEY   Here’s a mock scenario. You’ve worked at your career for the past 8 years and every year you get a yearly work bonus of nearly $5000. When you go to work you work full-time and sometimes you work over-time which means you earn more money after the government takes their cut. While you’re off at work your wife stays home with your new baby for the next 12 months on maternity leave then you both decide she will stay home to care for the baby full-time and give up her career. She misses working because she enjoys challenging herself but loves to be a mother. Without a career and earning now she can’t go out and spend money on herself like she used to. No more purses, shoes, new wardrobes, manicure, new hairstyles etc. Now your wife wants half of your yearly bonus to spend on whatever she likes because she works just as hard as you do at home. Does this sound like your family?   Wife Bonus   I was reading this article today about this couple who splits the husbands yearly work bonus. They call it a “Wife Bonus” where […]

grocery game monthly challenge

How to budget groceries for visiting out-of-town guests: The Grocery Game Challenge #4 May 25-31, 2015

how to budget groceries for visiting out of town guests

FOOD FOR EVERYONE   As you may know Mrs. CBB and I have out-of-town guests staying with us for 3 weeks. My parents are visiting from the UK which means our lovely grocery budget of $235 a month may just take a beating. Setting up the guest room and bathroom was the easy part. We cleared out the closets, put fresh linens on the bed, dusted and cleaned both rooms so it was ready for our guests. When we created our grocery budget we never thought much to having guests staying over at our house or to factor that in. If you are having guests stay over for a few days it likely won’t impact your budget much at all but if it’s for weeks or even months you may want to consider how you can budget the extra expenses into your grocery budget. Eating out is convenient when you have guests staying at your house but if you are anything like us YOU will pay the bill not your guests. That can get pricey if you start to eat out often so we opted to buy good food and cook it at home. The great thing is that my […]

Parents ask son to save money after they were homeless and poor

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SAVING MONEY IS YOUR CHOICE   If you want to save money then don’t wait until things come crashing down and you need that money, do it now! Being homeless and poor is not something to take lightly because it happens all around us. For those who have survived and experienced this life many go on to motivate others how NOT to land themselves on the streets. Today’s fan question shares some deep secrets about the time his parents found themselves living on the streets with no savings and nowhere to go. It’s either the parents writing to me or their children because for one reason or another money is a big problem. It doesn’t matter whether you are a student or have a high-profile job if you don’t know where your money is going it’s your own fault when you don’t have anything at the end to show for it all. I’m not talking “stuff” either. I’m talking about cash and investments. If you earn money you should have some sort of system to save money and budget or in the least know your expenses and track them.   Life Choices   It seems from my experience with fan […]

Will signing a room rental agreement feel like moving home?

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BEFORE RENTING A ROOM……   Signing a room rental agreement could feel like you are moving in with your parents but it could be worse, you could be moving in with Sheldon Cooper. Although renting a room is a great way to save money in the budget it also comes with pros and cons but it’s best to do your homework first before signing on the dotted line. Not all families or couples are the same so like the homeowner who may interview you to see if you are the right fit to move in you want to do the same. If you are someone who likes to live in clean, quiet environment then search out rooms for rent that fit that description. If you don’t mind kids and pets you can easily find a room for rent because lots of families are looking to supplement their income if they have a spare room in the house. Kids are costly after all. Today I have a fan question that came in that I was easily able to answer since I’ve been in his shoes before. I’m happy when the fans do their homework because not only are they saving themselves […]

Holiday gas price increase hits the wallet: PF Weekly grab a brew #68

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DON’T WAIT TO FILL UP   With every holiday in Canada we see a gas price increase at the pumps but that’s only the beginning of what to expect. Although the gas price increase seem to be a tradition here in Canada there are no real Easter traditions for myself but the Mrs. likes to spend time with the family around Good Friday and Easter. This year is no exception and we have enjoyed a couple of days away and will eat lots of fish for our Good Friday meal today.   Gas price increase   While we have been off from work we noticed a sharp gas price increase, in fact where we are it shot up 10 cents per litre overnight. I was quite lucky because we had just filled up the day before the gas price increase which is fine for now but what about continuing on? Apparently the gas price increase is supposed to be hitting the $1.47 per litre mark sometime soon and people will have no other choice than to pay it. The other option is to get rid of the vehicle and ride a bike, take the bus, walk or car pool. This increase combined with the new […]

Our mortgage amortization schedule is going in the bin: March 2014 Net Worth Update (+0.75%)

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 NO SWIFFER NEEDED JUST A FIRE PIT   Yes, that’s right no more checking the amortization schedule on our mortgage to see how far we have come and costs involved with our mortgage. The time is very near where we start the fire and light up those mortgage papers to say good-bye and good riddance. Although the last few months of our budget have been filled with unexpected expenses we are still on target to say goodbye to our mortgage, for good. Next months Net Worth update should be titled, Mortgage free at last…. or something to that effect lol. It’s been a long 5 years in this house but it was worth the sacrifices of using the budget (which is free if you want to download it) to save the money for all the necessities we’ve needed so we can be mortgage free before 40 years of age. Although we’ve had the money for close to a year to pay the mortgage the exchange rate for the UK is at an all-time high since I moved to Canada back a few years ago now. I’m pulling the money I have over there while I can. The last thing I […]