Last-Minute Holiday Travel Tips & Safety Guide For Your Family

car driving in snowAlong with the joy and festivities of the Christmas season comes much holiday stress, especially when holiday travel is involved. Whether you’re flying, driving, or traveling by bus or train, there is a lot of prep work that goes into your trip. And on top of that, there’s the worry of leaving your home unattended while you are away and the concern for your safety while you’re traveling.

To make your holiday travel preparations smoother and less stressful, use this checklist to ensure that you have made all the necessary arrangements for yourself, your home, and your family before taking off. That way you can have a pleasant, less nerve-racking trip.

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How to Shop for One-Time Purchases – Buy High-Quality Products That Last a Lifetime

man shopping with credit cardIn this post, I’ll be talking about how you can save money on the various one-time purchases that you’ll need to make throughout your life. So what exactly do I mean by a one-time purchase? This is obviously any item that you’ll likely only have to buy once, but I’m not referring to homes, cars, or other large purchases which you may be thinking of. Instead, I’m referring to smaller, simpler items that usually last you a lifetime for whatever reason.

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Real vs. Fake Artificial Christmas Tree Types (Facts & Comparison) – Which Should You Buy?

Did you know that the first artifical Christmas trees were actually made in the early 1930’s by a company called Addis Brush? They were in the business of making toilet scrubbers and brushes. So, the first fake trees were really nothing more than gigantic, green toilet bowl scrubbers. Imagine that! It’s pretty funny to think about now.

Since their invention, artificial trees have continued to gain widespread popularity. In 2007 alone, almost 18 million were sold here in the U.S. That should hardly be surprising especially in tough economic times. It’s commonly believed that buying an artificial Christmas tree saves money. You invest the money once, and use the tree year after year. Plus, you help the environment by saving a tree from being cut down.

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Teaching Kids About Money – Should You Be Honest About A Difficult Financial Situation?

teaching kids about moneyMany families are being hit hard by the recent economic recession, and will likely celebrate Christmas a little less extravagantly than usual as a result. This might mean making cheap homemade Christmas decorations and ornaments or buying dollar store items, using more frugal Christmas holiday gift ideas, and starting Christmas shopping early to save money and reduce holiday stress.

You may be able to relate. Perhaps your kids are expecting the normal mounds of presents on Christmas day, but this year, it’s just not in the budget.

So what are you to do? Certainly you can’t disappoint the kids, but at the same time you can’t afford to live beyond your means either.

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When to Sell Stocks – 6 Questions to Ask Before Selling Your Shares

Wall St. Sign in New York City You bought some stock on a whim a few years go. Maybe it was doing great for a while, or maybe it has been yo-yoing. Maybe you are so sick of looking at the stock that you think it is time to sell.

Before you pull the trigger on that sell order, there are a few things you should consider. Run down the 6 items on this checklist to see if you really should sell those shares of stock, or if you should consider holding onto them for a little while longer.

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11+ Uses for Vinegar You Need to Know About

household uses for vinegarWhen I buy vinegar, I buy it in bulk from Costco. Why on earth do I need that much vinegar, you ask?

Because vinegar, like baking soda uses, is one of those miracle products that I use for dozens of different things. I use it  to can vegetables, to clean my house, to remove stains – it’s a truly amazing, versatile, and eco-friendly product.

The wonderful thing about vinegar is that, because it can be used in so many different ways, you really will save money by using it. You don’t need 5 or 10 different household cleaners – you just need two.

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stickK Review – Would You Put Money on the Line to Achieve Your Goals?

Setting a goal to runHow many of you have set a goal, only to find yourself crashing and burning a few months, or weeks, into the effort?

Perhaps it was a goal to stick to your budget, train for a marathon, lose weight, quit smoking…

Yeah, I’m raising my hand too. I could write a lengthy list of all the goals I have set but haven’t met in years past. Not meeting a goal is not only dispiriting, but it often lowers your confidence about setting and meeting future goals. I know it sure has for me.

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Personal Finance Roundup: Will Your Christmas Dinner Menu Be Unforgettable?

Thanksgiving may be the holiday that revolves around dinner, but I get more interested in Christmas dinner myself. Maybe it’s because there isn’t an obligation towards the turkey and we can have more variety with Christmas, or because all the gift opening makes me really hungry.

Obviously, with the increased cravings come increased food costs (not to mention increased pants sizes…) and there is definitely an art to saving money during Christmas. One great way to save is to plan ahead, and on that note, check out this post called Organized Christmas – Plan Your Holiday Menu by Mrs. January detailing some basics of getting organized and saving at dinnertime.

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Woot! Deals Review – Find the Best Deal of the Day

woot logoI do a great deal of my shopping online, and I also have a side business which entails finding deals on online shopping sites and reselling. I’ve had a look at a multitude of daily deals and group buying sites out there, and frankly, I have not been impressed with very many of them. They all have a variety of drawbacks, whether it be the products they offer, their prices, their shipping times, or their return policies. In general, I’ve learned that you need to be very careful when shopping at these websites, to make sure you are actually getting a “deal.”

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How to Start a Property Management Company & Business

property management condo rentProperty management is a surprisingly easy and affordable field to enter, requiring minimal education or experience, and almost no small business start-up capital. That said, it is a multifaceted business that involves liaising with many different types of people (landlords, tenants, contractors), understanding local landlord-tenant laws, and creating protocols that are both efficient and effective. It’s definitely not for everyone. There are many issues and responsibilities that come with buying rental property and becoming a landlord, and starting a property management business is no different. In fact, it comes with its own set of challenges and risks.

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