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Sally Aquire
Sally is a UK-based freelance writer. As well as personal finance, she also writes on health & beauty and lifestyle topics. When she's not writing, she enjoys reading, shopping, hanging out with friends and generally making the most of her downtime!

Why You Shouldn’t Take Out Payday Loans

By Sally Aquire

payday loansWhen unexpected expenses come out of the blue and you’re not sure how best to pay, you may be tempted to take out a payday loan to get a hold of the money straight away and get the payment wrapped up. Here at Money Crashers, we are strongly against payday loans. If you’re not familiar with how they work, the basic idea is that you are temporarily loaned the money until your next payday. In most cases, you apply for the loan and are approved very quickly (often within one or two hours), and the money can usually be deposited into your bank account that same day. Sounds good, right? Think again. There are some pretty big downsides to payday loans that make them a very risky and unattractive prospect. Here are some of the reasons why we’re so set against payday loans:

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Throwing a Budget Baby Shower

By Sally Aquire

cheaper baby showersIf you’re reading this post, there’s a pretty good chance that someone close to you has recently announced their pregnancy. Once the congratulations have been dished out, your thoughts might turn towards throwing a baby shower for the new mom. There is a common misconception that you have to spend a good deal of money to throw an enjoyable baby shower (or any type of party or celebration, for that matter) but this is simply not true. You can easily throw a great baby shower on a budget if you’re prepared to get creative, and here are some tips to help you do just that:

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LendingTree Review – Taking The Hassle Away From Loan Shopping

By Sally Aquire

As you can probably tell from the name, LendingTree deals with loans. More specifically, it acts as a convenient way for consumers to find loan options. I’ve had some personal experiences using LendingTree and want to give you some insight into the service.

Both personal and commercial loans can be taken out through the website. LendingTree doesn’t deal with loan requests directly. Instead, it gathers together your information (both personal and financial) and passes it over to member banks, who will then send you their rates from which you can compare and choose. This makes things a lot easier for you if you’re looking for a loan since you don’t have to spend a boatload of time shopping around to compare quotes.

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Graduation Attire – What to Wear to a Graduation Ceremony (on a Budget)

By Sally Aquire

graduationJudging from the comments on my recent post about going to a wedding for less, it seems that graduation ceremonies are definitely hitting people hard at this time of the year. I’ve opted to focus this post on the outfit side of things, because this can soon send the costs soaring. Academic dress can be a big expense, especially when you are unlikely to have any need for it afterwards. Here are some tips to get prepared for a high school graduation (but this post applies to other levels of graduation as well), particularly if money is tight:

Academic Dress

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How to Stop Expensive Friends Pushing You Into Debt

By Sally Aquire

spending freezeAre friends with expensive tastes encouraging you to spend more than you want to? I have one particular friend who always insists on going to expensive restaurants while she’s visiting. Granted, she only visits once or twice a year and I do have plenty of time to adjust my budget in preparation, but it’s still money that I wouldn’t otherwise be spending. Being someone who likes to spend as little money as possible, I still come to begrudge the expense even though it’s not a regular occurrence. For some people reading this post, the situation will be much worse. Accepting such an invitation might even be the difference between being in the red and in the black. So, how do you tackle the problem without losing the friendship? Communicate, don’t make a scene, be assertive, and take charge of the plans!

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Quicken Deluxe 2010 Review

By Sally Aquire

The Quicken Deluxe personal finance software is designed to make it easy to budget and manage your money. In this respect, it sounds very similar to the You Need a Budget (YNAB) software, but it has some additional features that aren’t present in YNAB, such as investment tracking and tax preparation. This review focuses on the Quicken Deluxe 2010 software but you can also buy various other Quicken 2010 software, such as Quicken Premier, Quicken Home & Business and Quicken Home Inventory Manager.

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How to Decorate a Baby Room On a Budget

By Sally Aquire

cheap baby room decoration ideasDecorating a baby room may seem like an expensive proposition but don’t panic if your budget doesn’t stretch to creating the baby room of your dreams. Contrary to the messages put out by glossy advertising, you don’t need to spend a small fortune on brand new items when it comes to creating a baby room. If you’re prepared to put in a bit more legwork, you can find some lovely bargains that won’t break the budget. Here are a few ideas for decorating a baby room for less:

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Angie’s List Review – Find Trusted Services in Your Area

By Sally Aquire

angie's list reviewHave you ever had a nightmare with a contractor, mechanic, or dentist? I’m sure we’ve all had a bad experience at some point in our lives, and it’s probably because you picked someone random, rather than from a referral. If you’re planning to spend a sizable amount of money on things like home repairs, home improvements or medical expenses, you’ll want to know that you’re not wasting your hard-earned cash.

Angie’s List was created with this in mind, and features reports and ratings from consumers who have used the service providers that they are reviewing to let others know if they should trust them. Because it’s not a free service, let’s take a more in-depth look at how it works so that you can assess whether it’s worth the expense.

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Weekly Blog Round-Up: Frugality Doesn’t Equal Deprivation

By Money Crashers

being frugalMany people assume that living a frugal lifestyle means never letting yourself enjoy treats and luxuries. This is a view point that I’ve never personally subscribed to, so I was glad to come across this article on ‘Frugality Doesn’t Mean Depriving Yourself’ on Free From Broke. This post is keen to highlight the fact that being frugal doesn’t mean denying yourself just because you’re on a limited budget. We often focus so much on the little things in our budget, when it’s the big bills and expenses that are killing the budget. As long as you’re sensible, there’s no reason why you can’t enjoy little splurges now and again. In fact, it can be more damaging not to because there’s the definite danger that a self-imposed ban on absolutely anything that’s not deemed to be essential can make you miserable and potentially lead to a big spending spree further down the line if you can’t stick to it.

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REDIRECT: DebtGoal Review – Pay Down Debt Quicker

By Sally Aquire

DebtGoal logoAnyone with debt wants to get it paid off as soon as possible and that’s the idea behind DebtGoal. According to the DebtGoal website, a staggering two-thirds of people who are aiming to become debt free don’t ever create a plan to help them do this. If you’re one of those who fall into this category, DebtGoal can help you to draw up a debt elimination plan that is personalized to you.

Everyone has a different financial situation, that is why you need a personalized plan to get out of debt. Having the desire to get out of debt is the first step, and making a plan to achieve this goal is the next step. Let’s take a look at DebtGoal and how it works:

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How to Enjoy a Romantic Weekend Getaway For Less

By Sally Aquire

weekend breakIt can be challenging to find time together as a couple if life keeps getting in the way, but getting away for the weekend might be the solution that you’re looking for. A short weekend break can help you to inject some important romance back into your relationship and give you the chance to spend some quality time together away from the daily grind. But, it’s not always affordable to book a weekend away, even though you’ll only be there for a few days. If you’re worried about how much it’ll cost, you can stop worrying on that front. You really don’t need to spend lots of money to enjoy a romantic short break, because there are plenty of ways to get away on the cheap and still have a good time. Here are just a few ideas for enjoying a cheap weekend break.

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How To Save Money Feeding Treats to Your Pets

By Sally Aquire

a catGiving treats to your cat or dog can become expensive as they’re not always cheap to buy. If you don’t mind spending a bit of extra time and effort, you may consider making your own homemade pet food as “treats” every once in a while in order to save money and reward your pet. This can work out cheaper and at the very least, it allows you to take some control over what your pet is eating. However, make sure you do your research to make sure you are not overfeeding your pet a certain treat (this could be bad for the pet health-wise and might make them unwilling to eat their normal pet food, which contains some very essential nutrients to keep them healthy). Here are some recipes to try:

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Health Insurance Options For the Self-Employed

By Sally Aquire

medical equipmentA good proportion of large debts, especially those that lead to bankruptcy, are at least partially caused by big medical bills that couldn’t be paid. To avoid being placed in this situation, most of us look to take out health insurance for both ourselves and our families, but for the self-employed, the options can be much more expensive. Here are some of the options that you might want to explore:

1. Continue Your COBRA Coverage

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Money Management Tips for Living With Friends

By Sally Aquire

Living with friends might seem like a good idea on paper, but it won’t always work so well in reality. While you may have plenty of things in common with your friends, are you on the same page in terms of your attitude towards money? The last thing you want to do is let money come in the way of something more important, which is your friendship. There’s a right way to handle the situation and a wrong way to handle it. On the TV show, “Friends”, there is a great episode where Chandler knows that Joey is broke and he feels so bad for him that he goes out of his way to try to give Joey some money. Unfortunately, TV shows aren’t real life, and most of us can’t afford to support a roommate. Here are some tips for staying sane while living with friends.

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Why You Should Say No to Retail Store Credit Cards

By Sally Aquire

gold store cardIf you’ve been shopping in a retail store lately, you might have been given the opportunity to sign up for a store card. Having the chance to save 10% (this is just an example figure as the real percentage could be higher or lower depending on the store) on your purchases that day, and in the future it might look good on paper. But, you need to remember that store cards are just another form of credit, and you’ll be getting into debt by signing up for one. If that’s not enough to put you off, here are a few more reasons why you should stay away from store cards.

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The content on Money Crashers is for informational and educational purposes only and should not be construed as professional financial advice. Should you need such advice, consult a licensed financial or tax advisor. References to products, offers, and rates from third party sites often change. While we do our best to keep these updated, numbers stated on this site may differ from actual numbers.
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