6 Secrets to Family Savings for Young Couples

Hi everyone!! Today we have a very special guest post from Hannah at Omaby.com. Hannah writes about pregnancy and parenting. Today, she will be sharing with us 6 Secrets to Family Savings for Young Couples!!

6 Secrets to Family Savings for Young Couples

No one is promised tomorrow, but you don’t want to live your retirement years with just a few options. Or worse, none at all. In this post, let’s talk about the six secrets to family savings for young couples.

Whether you and your partner have one or multiple sources of income, these secrets will help you maintain a good financial footing. As long as you follow them, you can easily make ends meet.

1. Make a budget

It’s always the first step if you want to take control of your finances. Having a budget allows you to understand where your income is going. It also enables you to adjust it based on how much you can afford.

Write down your budget and separate items by categories. Always stick to it. If it’s your first time to have a budget, you may wish to use some of the best online budgeting tools available.

With a budget, you’ll understand your cash flow. You can quickly catch places where you spend more than what you have planned.

2. Live within your means

You must be honest with yourself and your partner of what you can afford. Never go into debt just to get a brand new car if you could only afford a second-hand unit.

Never go on a shopping spree if you knew that you’d be racking up bills on credit card. Keep in mind that if one of you would lose a source of income, it’d be difficult to pay off your debt.

Then, instead of paying with credit card, use cash. However, if you need to pay through credit card, you should be able to understand the difference between needs and wants.

It’s also vital that you cut down on your expenses. One of the most obvious expenses that you could let go is the cable. It’s most likely that you’re wasting a lot of money on pointless television shows.

You may also want to get rid of your gym membership. Keep in mind that you can still exercise at home if you wish to stay in shape without having to spend a lot. On the other hand, you could ask for some deals and prices on your gym membership contract.

6 Secrets to Family Savings for Young Couples

3. Automate savings

It’s most likely that you’re getting paid through direct deposit. If that’s your case, it’s easier to direct your funds into several accounts.

You’ll need to set up multiple savings accounts for specific goals, like a trip to Asia or a brand new car. Doing so will help you see the progress you’re making.

Saving money automatically before it even reaches your bank account will help you save funds in the future. Thus, it increases your contributions in the long run.

4. Get another job or source of income

Chances are, you still can’t pay your bills even if you make a budget and save. That said; consider finding ways that that let you bring in some extra income. It’s either you or your partner who’ll look for it.

The best thing about today is that you can easily make extra income at home working for a few hours a week. For example, if you’re good at web design, you could go to an online marketplace and find clients who need such service.

You may also wish to start a small home business. But avoid those get-rich-quick schemes. They’ll never make you rich anyway.

Another way to earn extra income is to sell online. If you have things at home that you don’t even use or rarely use, you could just sell them and earn.

Or you could rent out your vacant room or basement. On the other hand, if you’re living in a huge house, but you don’t need a huge space, you could downsize and get a smaller home or apartment. Doing so will help you realize the many benefits of downsizing your home to save you money and boost your family savings.

5. Invest wisely

Don’t just put your money in your bank account. Rather, invest it. One of the best ways to invest your money is to buy stocks.

But before you invest, you should talk to your partner. If both of you want to invest in stock market, try asking the help of a financial planner.

It doesn’t matter what your investment choices are. The most important thing here is to review your investments regularly and make sure that the portfolios are balanced.

6 Secrets to Family Savings for Young Couples

6. Have an emergency fund

You may have a great career today or earn a comfortable living. You may not be worrying about your debt today, but how about tomorrow? Because you don’t know what’s coming, you could find yourself unprepared for an emergency.

Couples could easily be under stress after receiving an unexpected pink slip or experience an accident. Illness could also take a toll on your finances. If you don’t have an emergency savings account, your finance would easily throw you off track.

All couples must have an emergency fund, even if you don’t have to worry about your finances today. The fund must be three to six months’ worth of your living expenses. It must be placed in a secure account, such as a money-market fund.

If you have such fund, it’ll reduce stress knowing that you have money to pay off debts. It’ll give you comfort because you know that you won’t be walking a fine line between comfort and tragedy.

Conclusion

Young couples are usually risk-takers. They don’t mind spending a lot of their money because they knew that they have a stable job.

Unfortunately, jobs, these days, can be easily wiped away. The company you’re working now may be in good standing. But it’ll be different a few years from now.

If you have an excellent family saving, you don’t need to worry about the future. But just because you have savings doesn’t mean that you need to spend more. Always look at your budget first before you spend.

These six secrets to family savings for young couples are effective in helping you grow your savings account. Following them will help you get a brighter tomorrow regarding your finances.

Hannah Tong is the founder of Omaby.com, a blog dedicated to providing accurate advice to mothers regarding childcare. She loves taking care of her kids and teaching them the right things. She is also enthusiastic and loves sharing her experiences to teach others about how to care for their families’ health. Check the latest article (Child’s development) here.

Keep up with Hannah on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest

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How to Use Reverse Shampooing to Make Your Hair Soft and Luscious

This post contains affiliate links

 This post contains affiliate links

Have you guys heard that shampooing too often is bad for your hair? It destroys the natural oils that your body produces and causes your hair to become dry and brittle. About 2 years ago, a sorority sister of mine told me about reverse shampooing.

The basic premise is that you use your conditioner to protect your hair while you wash it.

Make your hair more soft and luscious by reverse shampooing!!

If you condition your hair first, it will protect your hair from the shampoo. Based upon what type of hair you have (dry, oily, etc.) you can decide whether to rinse out any, some, or all of the conditioner before applying your shampoo.

I personally condition my whole head: roots to ends. I briefly rinse my hair in the water and then only shampoo my roots. When my hair is sufficiently clean, I rinse all of the product out of my hair.

This process leaves my hair feeling silky and smooth and it never looks oily (all the blondes out there know my pain).

This method is perfect for the everyday shower-er and the athlete, because you totally need to shower after running, but its awful for your hair to wash it every day.

Make your hair more soft and luscious by reverse shampooing!!

Along with shampooing properly, I also changed up the quality of product I used in my hair. I live and die by TRESemme Keratin Smooth. When I was in college I was using the cheap dollar store shampoo to save money and I regret it so much now!

TRESemme products are excellent and very reasonably priced for their quality. They also go on sale/have coupons often that can be stacked for major savings at CVS. 

What methods have you used to keep your hair game strong? Any one out there reverse shampoo? Leave a comment and let me know!!

blondie

Brain Dump Printable

Does your mind ever feel so cluttered that the thought of making a to-do list overwhelms you? If that is the case, it’s possible that you might benefit from a Brain Dump.

How to Brain Dump to Declutter your Mind Plus a FREE 4 page Brain Dumping Printable Template!!

A Brain Dump is when you get all of the disconnected ideas floating around your brain down onto paper.

The system I use involves two steps – for the first I categorize my thoughts by what they involve – Work, Blog, School, Personal – things like that.

How to Successfully Brain Dump to get Organized in College!!    How to Brain Dump when you are a busy blogger/working full time/super mom/perfect wife!!

For the next step, I rearrange all of the bullet points into how vital they are – Have to do, Ought to do, Should do, Like to do. Sorting it this way helps me create an ordered list of what needs to get done.

Sort your tasks by priority to ensure that the most important things get done - free Brain Dumping Printable!!

In the Brain Dump Printable, you’ll find 4 different pages:

  • The first is my current Brain Dump template – it will work great for bloggers working full time jobs
  • The next is the Brain Dump list I used in college
  • The third is a Brain Dump sheet where the categories are left blank
  • The last is the Brain Dump sheet which helps you prioritize your taskS

If none of these templates are good for you, please feel free to let me know, and I would be happy to make you a template more suited to your life!!

Weekend To-Do List

Do you spend all weekend trying to get organized, just to end up in the same place Monday morning – struggling to make it to work on time? The kids clothes aren’t dry… Lunch isn’t ready… There’s cat fur all over everything…

Weekend To-Do List to make your Monday mornings easier!!

Use this Weekend To Do List to get your life organized on the weekend so that you can be ready and rearing to go bright and early Monday morning!!

9 Apps that Pay You to Shop

This post may contain affiliate links.

Alright, everyone, I’m about to real-talk you for a second: Being an adult is expensive. There are bills to pay, furniture to buy, kittens to feed, and not to mention trying to feed yourself and your family (the human ones).

If you’ve been keeping up with me, here at Blonde Roast by the Coast, you know that I just moved out of my parent’s house into my own home. The idea was exciting and the planning was meticulous, but still, there were unforeseen expenses that have left me feeling EXTREMELY stressed about my financial situation.

I recently got into extreme couponing and the like, but found that it is time-consuming. The easier way to save money on food is through rebate apps. If you combine your meal planning with sales, couponing, and rebates, you are able to save a bunch of money!

9 Apps that Pay you to shop plus a Printable Deal Stacking Spreadsheet!! How to save money shopping for groceries, alcohol, and more!!

My 9 Favorite Rebate Apps

1. Ibotta

Ibotta is the first cashback app I found and it is still my favorite. Not only do you get $10 for signing up but the cash back offers are much higher than other apps. While Ibotta is able to give me hundreds back on my groceries every year, the real reason I recommend it so highly is that they give you back $5 every time you spend $35 at Joann’s Fabrics. I don’t know about you guys, but I’m crafty AF. I just bought a Cricut Explore and I am constantly in Joann’s buying adhesive vinyl, jars to decorate, and everything else I can get my hands on. Once you make enough money in Ibotta, you can either deposit the money via PayPal or use it to buy e-gift cards! Honestly, this app is so helpful and so easy to use, I can’t believe I wasn’t using it in college to save money.

Also, by the way, Ibotta has an excellent referral bonus where you receive $5 for each friend that joins!! That means that when you have your friends sign up through your link you make $5 and your friend makes $10.

2. Checkout 51

Checkout 51 is similar to Ibotta, but the rebates aren’t quite as high value. The upside to checkout 51 however is that you can redeem some of the rebates more than once. For example, I stacked a manufacturers coupon for sponges, with a Target deal to get a $5 gift card for buying however many sponges, with the cash back from Ibotta and ended up MAKING MONEY on the sponges!! Now I have a healthy supply of sponges that will last me a long while. There are often manufacturer coupons, target deals, Checkout 51 rebates, and Ibotta rebates all available on the same item resulting in massive savings!!

3. MobiSave

MobiSave is essentially the same as Ibotta and Checkout 51, but it’s rebates are much lower and the variety isn’t quite as extensive. The real savings comes from the last page in the app where it offers you 75% off your prescriptions with a special code to give your pharmacy. Although this app isn’t quite as good for grocery shopping, if you are already uploading your receipts to Ibotta and Checkout 51, you might as well use MobiSave, too for even more savings!!

MobiSave has a referral program, but you only earn $1 for every friend you refer which you receive when they enter their first submission. 

4. BevRage

BevRage is awesome! It allows you to earn cash back on the purchase of alcohol. Again, it’s easy to stack cash back opportunities on alcohol with BevRageIbotta, and Checkout 51 around the holidays. I got a great deal on some Bailey’s around Christmas by combining all those offers. This is PERFECT for college students because if you’re the one making (completely legal) alcohol runs for your (legal drinking age) friends you can secretly get cash back AND collect money from them!! It is also great if you are the one hosting family parties!! It is such a great way to save money.

BevRage also has a referral program when you can earn $2 for each friend you refer!! 

5. Shopmium

Shopmium is one step down from MobiSave. It really only offers a few rebates at a time, but if you monitor it until you find something that you planned on buying, it can definitely save you some money.

There is a referral program for Shopmium where you receive $2 for every friend that signs up and your friend receives a free Lindt Chocolate bar!! If you’re feeling kind, you should use my code: AKCYFYKH

How to save money on groceries, alcohol, and more!!

6. SavingStar

SavingStar is an interesting rebate option, because instead of having to upload your receipts, it links with your shopper card! You also have the option to upload receipts if your grocery store of choice does not have shoppers cards (such as Target).

7. Berry Cart

The reason that Berry Cart is such a helpful app is that it gives you rebates on healthy foods as opposed to the prepackaged foods that most of the other apps offer! This app is especially helpful for the health-conscious or those with dietary restrictions such as a gluten allergy.

Berry Cart also offers a $2 referral for inviting friends.

Deal-Stacking Spreadsheet

8. Ebates

Ebates isn’t used so much for grocery shopping, its for online shopping, but the same premise applies. You receive a percentage of cash back based on what store your shop at. For example, Old Navy, Gap, and Khols almost always offers 6% cash back!! That’s a lot of money depending on how much you buy, especially if you shop strategically. Ebates will also search online for coupon codes and other ways to save you money from your online purchase. If you have a Visa credit card, you can also use Ebates in-store!! I’ve already saved a couple hundred dollars using Ebates and I’ve only been using it a couple months!!

If you sign up for Ebates right now, you get $10 just for registering!! They also have a referral program where you can receive $5 per friend who signs up!!

9. TopCashBack

TopCashBack is comparable to Ebates. It offers you cash back on online purchases. The only difference is what percentage of cash back each of them are offering in any given day, so it’s definitely good to check both before making your purchase!!

TopCashBack has an insane referral program, where they give you $10 per friend that you invite!!

As you can see, there are a ton of ways to receive cash back for your in-store and online purchases!! I do all my shopping at Target because their deals/sales occur often, the Cartwheel app allows for even more savings, and they allow you to stack coupons.  Uploading the receipts to each of the rebate apps is a breeze and always results in savings if you do your planning!

Be sure to grab our Deal-Stacking Printable Spreadsheet for organizing coupons, sales, cartwheel offers, and rebate opportunities!!

How do you like saving money on your groceries?

blondie

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 Meal Planning and Grocery list so that your trips to the store can be organized and productive!! Even has a reminder for coupons!! 

Deal-Stacking Spreadsheet

Do you struggle with spending too much money on your groceries? There are definitely ways to save money such as meal planning, couponing, shopping the sales, and using rebate apps.

FREE Deal-Stacking Printable Spreadsheet to track sales, coupons, and rebate apps!

It was definitely something that I needed a little help with. That’s why I created this spreadsheet. I write down everything I’m shopping for and then make an X in the column where there is a cost-saving opportunity!!

This is an example of how I’ve used my sheet for a shopping trip to Target recently:

Enjoy and don’t spend all your money in one place, unless it’s Target, because they have the best deals!!

blondie

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 Meal Planning and Grocery list so that your trips to the store can be organized and productive!! Even has a reminder for coupons!! 

10 Simple Steps to Make the Best Coffee with a Percolator

The following post may contain affiliate links

Please enjoy the following guest post written by Meena from Meena Writes! She specializes in writing posts to drive more traffic to a particular business, but is also an avid coffee drinker, just like us!! Today, shes going to teach us how to make the best coffee with a percolator.

10 Simple steps to make the most delicious coffee with a percolator!!

Doesn’t coffee have the most divine aroma? And doesn’t it inject a joie-de-vivre into your morning? A perkiness…perhaps?

Believe it or not, that perkiness comes right out of your coffee percolator into your mug of oozing warm liquid coffee – that-smells-divine-and-you-can-wait-to-take-your-first-sip.

That’s right we are talking about coffee percolators and the reason why they are called so is because coffee literally “perks up” – when you see bubbles inside the dome area of your percolator.

These days though, old fashion percolators have been shun to the bottom drawer, replaced by electronic coffee machines that can brew your coffee and froth your milk at the same time or coffee that comes right out of a tiny pod in flavours that are almost too good to complain about.

Many people complain that coffee from percolators have a strong or a bitter taste, but the good ole percolator deserves a mention and staunch coffee drinkers will swear by it even today.

So let’s see how we can re-create the magic of the old and make freshly brewed coffee that “perks” up along with you every morning:

To start off, you will need your percolator – that’s obvious huh?!

      1. Wash your percolator thoroughly if using for the first time and then set up the stand and perforated coffee chamber in the pot.
      2. Pour the desired amount of water in the water chamber, making sure it’s below the level of the coffee chamber.
      3. Grind your beans to coarse consistency as fine coffee will seep through with water and you will find yourself seeping a cup full of gritty coffee bean bits.
      4. Pack the coffee chamber with freshly ground coffee depending on how strong or mild you want it. A good ratio to go by is one tablespoon of ground coffee per eight ounces of water.
      5. Assemble the rest of the percolator by placing the spreader plate on top of the coffee chamber, then the glass bubble in the middle and lastly, firmly close the lid on the pot.

Now you are ready to start the brewing process

Isn’t it exciting? I am almost bubbling with excitement!!

      1. Ok, now put the percolator on your stove – electric or gas. Depending on what you have it helps to regulate the heat. For an electric stove you can put the percolator on a cold stove and then turn up the switch. The water will slowly heat up close to a boil and brew the coffee. For a gas stove keep the heat low as you don’t want the water to boil over quickly.
      2. Most coffee percolators have a glass dome on the top so you can see through and monitor what is going on. As soon as you start hearing sputtering sounds, you will notice it in the gass dome and the faster that happens, it means that the water is getting hotter
      3. Regulate the heat so that the sputtering and bubbles in the glass dome occurs every few seconds and not any faster, or your water will be too hot for optimum brewing to take place.
      4. Let the coffee percolate for about 10 minutes which will make a nice cup of strong coffee but if you like a milder cup then let it brew for a shorter period of time. Experiment with your percolator and brewing times for your ideal taste.
      5. Once done, remove the percolator from the heat source and with an oven mitt, open the lid and remove the coffee chamber so that you don’t get ground coffee bits in your cup when you pour it out.

And there you have it. A tantalizing cup of the most amazing coffee to perk your day!

Do you have any tips on using a percolator? Have you had any different experiences? Comment below and let me know.

Keep Up with Meena:

“I can help you plan your content goals, find topics, write for you in your voice, update your blog, revitalize your website content and even create some smashing new graphics that will go with your content. Problem solved! Now you have time to actually run your business and do the stuff that you love while your content needs are taken care of by me.”

TWITTER // FACEBOOK // WEBSITE

 

I hope everyone enjoyed Meena’s post!!
I sure did!! I can’t wait to try out a percolator for a great cup of joe!!

blondie

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Meal Planning and Grocery List Printable

Meal Planning and Grocery list so that your trips to the store can be organized and productive!! Even has a reminder for coupons!!

Do you ever go for a quick trip to the grocery store and come home with $100 of food, but still have nothing to eat?

This has been happening to me more and more now that I’ve moved into my own home and have to feed myself.

Meal Planning and Grocery list so that your trips to the store can be organized and productive!! Even has a reminder for coupons!!

That’s why I created this Meal Planning and Grocery List Printable so that I would know what I was having for dinner every night of the week and what I would need to buy at the store to make it!!

 

How to Grow Your Blog Traffic with Pinterst – Part 2

Last week, I posted an article about How to Grow Your Blog Traffic with Pinterest Group Boards. It seems that it was really helpful to you guys, so I decided I should write another article to answer some of your questions that came from the first and to give a little more insight into how to be successful on Pinterest!!

How to Grow Your Blog Traffic with Pinterest - Understanding smart feed, finding group boards to join, properly requesting access, implementing pin scheduling, PLUS a list of 50 "No Posting Limit" Group Boards you NEED to join!!

In my original post, I shared a spreadsheet of 70 group boards, how to join them, and their pinning rules.

Some of you wondered, however, what criteria I used for deciding which groups to join and which to pass on.

Here’s the method I use:

1. Stalk the Pinterest account of your favorite bloggers

For me, that was:

  1. Cath (Blog // Pinterest)
  2. Marie (Blog // Pinterest)
  3. Krista Dickson (Blog // Pinterest)
  4. Heather (Blog // Pinterest)
  5. Desire (Blog // Pinterest)
  6. Chantal (Blog // Pinterest)
  7. Nicole (Blog // Pinterest)
  8. Elna Cain (Blog // Pinterest)
  9. Suzi (Blog // Pinterest)
  10. Abby (Blog // Pinterest)

2. Click on all of the boards you see that interest you

My criteria for clicking on a board is whether it falls within my niche and it has good graphics from the board cover.

3. Read the description of the board

Please see my shameless self promotion


PS. if you click the image you’ll be taken to the board

Look for:

  1. What niche of pins are accepted (blogging, lifestyle, motherhood, career…)
  2. How many pins are allowed per day
  3. How often you can repeat pins
  4. How many contributors the board has
  5. How many followers the board has
  6. Instructions for joining

4. Make a decision

These days, I will join a group board if it has allows repeat pins, has no posting limit, has a high number of followers, and seems active from scrolling through the pins.

5. Request to Join

Look at this Email I sent to Elna: My subject line is the name of the board. I addressed her by name. I told her that I already followed her because that was a requirement to join. I THANKED her. and I left my email address, pinterest URL, and my email signature includes my site.

PLEASE for the love of all things holy DO NOT EMAIL A FAMOUS BLOGGER without a subject, giving them the information they asked for, or thanking them for their time.

Also, if the rules say to follow them before requesting access, do it. Don’t ask for access without following first. That is just tacky, and you know it.

If the instructions request that you send them a Pinterest DM, I will usually send them the board and ask if they would add me as a collaborator “to this board” so there is no confusion about which board I mean.

You: “But Blondie!! What if there are multiple boards I want to join??”

First of all, chill. There’s no need to get so worked up. I was very interested in many of the group boards owned by Marie from Ladies Make Money Online so I wrote this email:

Are you seeing a pattern here? Take time in crafting your emails and be courteous. Remember, you are asking them for a favor.

How to Grow Your Blog Traffic with Pinterest - Understanding smart feed, finding group boards to join, properly requesting access, implementing pin scheduling, PLUS a list of 50 "No Posting Limit" Group Boards you NEED to join!!

6. Get accepted

You’ll get accepted to half the boards you request to collaborate on within the first 24 hours, 35% within the first week, and 10% within the month. 5% you won’t hear back. There are many reasons for this – they are on maternity (you know bloggers are always poppin’ out babies), you ended up in their spam folder (probably from lack of a subject line), you didn’t follow them first (that’s your own fault), or any other number of reasons.

7. Start Pinning

Alright guys, let’s rap about Pinterest for a second:

Pinterest uses a super complicated and ever-changing algorithm called “Smart Feed” to rate pins. It’s based on the quality of the pin, the number of shares, the quality of the source (blog), and how often someone searches your keywords.

YOU CAN ADD THE SAME PIN TO A GROUP BOARD IF IT SAYS “NO POSTING LIMIT” OR SOMETHING ALONG THOSE LINES

That means you can literally pin the same pin EVERY SINGLE DAY to MULTIPLE GROUP BOARDS. Do some math here people:

# pins x # boards = increased “Smart Feed” Rating

Increasing your Smart Feed rating is important because then your pins could show up on a feed of someone who doesn’t follow you. You know those “Picked for you” pins that always show up? That’s what I’m talking about.

You: “But Blondie, I have 25 blog posts and 2 Pinterest graphics each and 15 group boards!! You want me to pin 750 times a day?”

Yes that is exactly what I expect you to do – with Tailwind.

8. Schedule your Pins

Tailwind is an website that schedule your pins to Pinterest for the best times of day.  It also tracks the success of your pins and sends you a weekly email about data on how they all perform. Tailwind schedules your pins for the times of day that your previous pins have performed best. I do all my scheduling on Saturdays and don’t have to stress about pinning for THE WHOLE WEEK.

If you sign up for Tailwind through my link, you can earn a $15 credit towards your account!

9. Achieve Great Success

This is the most important step. You have put in so much work and I really just want you all to be successful. These are all the steps that I use and my Pinterest has been growing steadily for many months now.

If you have any questions please feel free to ask them below or email me. If I don’t know the answer, I will direct you to someone who does.

Get Pinnin’ Yall!!

blondie

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How to use pinterest group boards to increase your blog traffic dramatically, plus a spreadsheet with 70 groupboards, how to join them, and the pinning rules.   Badass Blogger Roundup