Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Always review your bank statement

This may seem like simple advice--always reviewing your bank statement--but we had an incident that recently bit my wife and I in the butt because we got out of the habit of doing this.  It's our own fault for letting it happen for more than a month, but no more.

This all stemmed from a company called AuraVie.

I'm not going to talk about the quality of their products and whether or not they do what they say.  What I'm going to briefly touch on is their business practices.

My wife, back in May, ordered some supposedly free samples.  Free for the products, but you had to pay shipping and handling.  In order to accomplish this, you needed to enter your credit or debit number--in our case it was debit as we do not have any credit cards and never will have them again.  Ever!  Well, lo and behold, they took it upon themselves to charge us $97.88 a month for a box of their skincare products.

We received them in the month of June--supposedly, I'm going to say, as we do not recall ever recieving them.

We also recieved them in July, just a few weeks ago.  This one we did get and I've since sent it back RETURN TO SENDER.  I have a video I'll be posting in a few days.  I'm waiting to see if they'll respond back to either the RETURN TO SENDER package and/or the contact e-mail I sent them.

Bottom line: always, and I mean always, review your bank statement.

As far as my quest with AuraVie . . . stay tuned.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

#1 advice for dealing with debt collectors

The absolute best advice for dealing with any debt collector is this:


If you do not get it in writing, that the debt collector will settle for less than what is fully owed on the account, and you send them money, they may very well come after you for the difference.

Here's the scenario: you owe $1,000 on an old credit card.  A few years pass and then you get sued.  You call the debt collector and offer to settle.  Let's say they offer $450 to settle on it.  Before sending them any money, get it in writing.  Even if they tell you that the offer is only good for today only, unless they're able to send you an e-mail or a fax, do not make a deal with them.  It has to be in writing.


Or no deal.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Sheknows.com article on planning a beautiful wedding on a shoestring budget

Last year, sheknows.com wrote an article titled "Planning a beautiful wedding on a shoestring budget"

The article lists 5 major areas where you can save, from the guest list on down to the dress and reception.  What's interesting, in my shoestring wedding ebook I touch on having an MP3 player as your DJ.  In this article, they cite also that this method is growing increasingly popular.

The one point where we debate on, and differ, is the use of photographers.  The article says you should never skimp on this.  I say otherwise.  The photographers for our wedding, taken by my uncle who dabbles in it as a hobby, looked just as good as others taken by those who do it for a living.  Keep in mind, our wedding was 15 years ago and the wedding photography business has grown and evolved since.  The bottom line for me is to shop around and find the best deal.  If a $10,000 photographer is not in your budget, it's foolish to go into debt to make sure you have one for a one-day shindig.

Be sure to check out sheknows.com's wedding channel for more insightful articles on planning your big day.

Also, don't forget about my wedding ebook titled 99 Ways To Have A Memorable Wedding On A Shoestring Budget.  Last week I offered a FREE promotion on this ebook and it was a tremendous success.  It's now back to it's full price of $.99, which is still a bargain and continues to sell well.  If you haven't picked it up, go to Amazon's Kindle Store site to pick it up.

Friday, July 20, 2012


Today is the last day to get my ebook titled 99 Ways To Have A Memorable Wedding On A Shoestring Budget for FREE!

Want to know ways in order to save money on your wedding?

Want to know how to fund your wedding?

These answers and a whole lot more are inside my ebook.  It's a quick read and is definitely worth the price of it.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

The Knot.com explores the "hidden costs" in weddings

In a recent article by The Knot.com, they explore the 10 Hidden Costs associated with weddings.

Most of the hidden costs they touch on range from taxes/gratuities to overtime fees associated with photographers and DJs.  Their first hidden fee was equipment fees for wedding bands.  It was an interesting article, which brings to light the reason why so many people go overbudget on their weddings.

The bottom line in the article is to make sure everything is upfront and in writing.  If you do not understand a clause in the contract, make sure they explain it to you.  If you still do not understand it or they whitewash over the clause, do not do business with them.

For more tips on saving and cutting costs on your wedding, be sure to also check out my ebook titled 99 ways to have a memorable wedding on a shoestring budget.


99 Ways To Have A Memorable Wedding On A Shoestring Budget is available right for FREE on Amazon's Kindle site.

Have a memorable wedding that will not leave you strapped into debt for the next decade.  This ebook is a quick read and is full of almost 100 ideas on how to make your day special.

But after tomorrow, it goes back up to its retail price of $.99.  I know $.99 isn't much, but I love FREE a whole lot better.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


Having a wedding or helping to plan one and the costs are getting out of control?

Be sure to check out my ebook 99 Ways To Have A Memorable Wedding On A Shoestring Budget which is FREE for the next 3 days.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Pioneer Thinking's top 5 tips to have a wedding on a shoestring budget

On the Pioneer Thinking website, author Helen Rankin posted an informative article pertaining to the top 5 tips to having a wedding on a shoestring budget.  Although there is definitely a lot more than 5, in my opinion, she broke her list down into 5 areas.

1) wedding venue

2) food

3) drinks

4) bridalwear

5) photography

If you're putting together a wedding and have a shoestring budget, be sure to check her article out as well as my very inexpensive ebook 99 ways to have a memorable wedding on a shoestring budget which is available through the Kindle on Amazon.


Yes, you heard it right.  My ebook 99 Ways To Have A Memorable Wedding On A Shoestring Budget is available for 4 more days on the Amazon Kindle.

For almost 100 ways to save on various aspects of your wedding, from the photography and wedding rings to limosuines and the honeymoon, be sure to check this book out.  For FREE!

Monday, July 16, 2012


For 5 days only, my ebook 99 ways to have a memorable wedding on a shoestring budget will be available for FREE on Amazon's Kindle site.

If you want to save $$ on your wedding, or if you know someone who's getting married and needs a little help, please pick this book up.

Did I mention it's FREE for 5 days only?

Thursday, July 12, 2012

I found an error on my credit report - now what?

You got your free credit report through the Annual Credit Report site and you found an error.  Now what?

This is fairly simple.  First, you send a letter to the credit bureau agency with the error (send this certified mail, return receipt requested, so you prove that you sent the letter) and explain the error.  From the moment they receive your letter, they have 30 days to either prove the accuracy of the entry or remove it completely.

Then, once the 30 days is up, the credit bureau should contact you with their decision.  If they prove the accuracy and you still know it to be wrong, you will need to contact the creditor directly to resolve it.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The yearly financial check-up

Once a year, it's a good idea to check your credit report.  You can get one from each of the three reporting credit agencies--Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian--by going through the Annual Credit Report site.

There are many places that say they can give you a free credit report, but the link above will take you to the official place.

You can either do it online, print out a PDF and send it through the mail, or call and request one.  You can get one once a year--or, if you want to spread it out, you can set a schedule and have one of the three done every 4 months.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

10 tips on having a frugal wedding - a short review on Frugal Dad.com

I recently found a very interesting post by Frugal Dad.com that I just had to share on this blog.

In this blog post, he has his top 10 list for planning a frugal wedding.  From invitations to photography and the venue choice to music, you can't go wrong to check this out for idea on how to trim the costs of your wedding.

It's odd too, because a number of the tips are also in my ebook 99 Ways To Have A Memorable Wedding On A Shoestring Budget.  Hmm, great minds think alike, huh?

So, be sure to check out Frugal Dad.com for "Insights on Family, Career, and Money."

Thursday, July 5, 2012

4 Ways To Help Boost Your Wedding Fund

You have a wedding budget of $12,000 and already have $2,000 saved.  Now, with the wedding 18 months away, you need to save like crazy.  You'll need $555 a month in order to achieve your goal.  But what if you can't do it?  What if all you can do is $250.  How will you do the extra $305 needed each month?

There are four easy ways:

1) If you are currently working, do some overtime if you're able to.

2) Get a part-time job.  Taking on a paper route, delivering pizzas, working as a waitress or bartender on nights and weekends are only a few such part-time jobs out there.

3) Sell something.  Put stuff on eBay or Craigslist.  Here's a blog post where I give a few tips on how to do this.  Do both of you have furniture?  Sell one set.  If you're both going to be living under one roof soon, you might as well get ready for it.

4) Start your own business.  Most small business can be started with little or no capital, like mowing lawns, raking leaves, painting houses, and shoveling snow.  #3 above could align with this if you happen to stumble upon a niche item that is easy to sell for you.  Check out this blog post regarding what I found as a niche market that worked for me.

Please share your "earning money" stories.  What have you found that worked?

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

A clever way to deal with debt collectors

One clever way to deal with debt collection agencies is to do this: pit one against another.

Let me explain.  Let's say you have two credit cards that are in collections, and let's say each are around $1,000 each.  You don't have $1,000 or else you'd be done with them.  You can settle, but let's say they won't budge.  A technique I've used (and worked) is to pit one against another.  Let's say you have $300 to settle.  Offer to each of them this $300 and the first one to respond will get it.  The other one will have to wait.

The first piece of advice is to make sure you have $300, if that's what you're going to settle on.  If you don't, this deal isn't going to work.

You can also tell one that the other collector took it for $250, so if you want to match you can be done with this debt.

I am not giving advice to avoid paying your bills.  If you have $1,000 to pay off a debt, do it.  But if you do not and wish to settle, you could try this.

**Please keep in mind, the advice given above is only my opinion, and your situation may be different so it would be advisable to seek legal counsel**