From My Frugal Side: 5 ways to cut costs in the bathroom

Thisthatandthemba.com, this that and the mba, bathroom, ways to save, cut costs

I don’t know where this one came from.  I was sitting there yesterday thinking (not thinking in the bathroom) and I started rattling off ways to save some money in the bathroom.  These ideas are not going to require any major design changes to your bathroom.  Sure you look at the picture above and think where can I possibly save any money.  The bathroom is probably one of the most frequented locations in the house and these simple changes can add up over the year.

Water Saver – add a water saving showerhead to your shower and this can cut up to 33% of your water consumption.  We added one of these to our rental unit and our unit and instantly began to notice our consumption go down.  With the decreased consumption that only means more money in your pocket.  I don’t know if it cut a third of the bill but it did cut a large portion, and our water bill was close to a grand last year before we installed the water saver. 

Bulk Hand soap – having little ones around the house we were constantly purchasing new pumps of soap.  Instead we were at Wal-Mart and we noticed they sold the soap in much larger quantities.  We purchased one of those containers for close to $6 dollars and they last us close to a year.  Whereas the little containers were running us a few bucks every few weeks for a new pump. 

Reuse Towels – you are coming out of the shower right?  You should be pretty clean, so hang up the towel and reuse it once or twice.  This savings is twofold.  First you will cut down on the amount of energy you use having to wash additional towels, but more importantly you will save yourself time with less laundry.  Think of a family of 4 the number of towels that you could go through on a weekly basis.

Toilet Paper – there really is no need to buy that premium brand Charmin.  We have been in the habit of purchasing Scott’s paper which runs about $16-18 dollars for a 20 pack of rolls.  After you get over the initial sticker shock, think about it this paper lasts us 2-3 months for our family of 4.  I don’t know what they put in these rolls but they never seem to end.  The premium paper runs close to a dollar a roll, but doesn’t last nearly as long as the Scott’s. 

Straight Razor – Sorry ladies this one is for the guys.  Use a straight razor to shave.  I started using one a few months ago.  What is manlier than putting a knife up to your face to shave with?  This will save big time in the wallet too.  Right now I am using the disposable safety razors which run about 20 for $7.  That is cheaper than one Gillette Mach 3 blade, which is running about 8 for $40.  Think about that over the lifetime of shaving.  Big money could be saved by switching to this, and it gets a remarkably close shave too. 

Any other ideas on how to cut costs without really spending any additional money in the bathroom?  Do you currently use any of these cost cutting tactics? 

PHOTO BY: nstop

Week 5 Recap: A Month in and I am here to stay for the long haul!

Well here it is the Five For Friday.  Another week has come and gone and we continue to pump out the articles.  It has had its share of ups and downs over there past month and a half, from late nights to early mornings.  A lot of great comments and plenty of feedback received via email.  Thank you and keep those suggestions coming.  I really appreciate it.  Here is what I have been reading this past week that has really kept my interest and even provoked some commenting. 

Homeownership may not be for everyone but here are some lessons learned.  Take a look at what Robert at My Multiple Incomes has to say.  I just found this blog this week and it is great a must read!

A great blog that looks like it started close to when I started this ole boy is Broke Elizabeth.  She talks about how great it is to lose weight, but there is a cost associated with losing weight. Now you can be faced with a personal finance dilemma of having to go out and get a new wardrobe.  Could definitely be a budget buster!   

Cash Flow Mantra discusses his strategy of using Covered Calls as a defensive strategy to declining stock prices. 

Not really on the topic of finance but we can spin it into finance because ads generate revenue.  Take a look at this little rant.  Some of us go to sites for the content. Turning it into a big advertisement is going to dissuade us from visiting. Take a look at this blogging rant over at Balancing Money and Life.

Sometimes you just have to bite the bullet and spend some money.  Here at Budgeting in the fun stuff they spent a grand in 24 hours.  At least there was a tax deduction! 

Be safe this weekend and I will see you bright and early Monday morning.  Or you may find me trolling your site!

The Peyton Manning Story: A few days short of that big bonus!

Peyton Manning, Peyton, Manning, Compounding, compound interest, analysis

Peyton Manning – Franchise Quarterback of the Indianapolis Colts is a free agent.  I am not a regular follower of football but I have heard who this gent is.  Potentially the best quarterback to ever play in Indy or maybe best quarterback ever in all of football.  This article isn’t going to talk about all those statistics that he has amassed, but we really could because finance covers stats and various ratios.  If he was on the roster at the start of the league year he was to be owed $28 million dollars as a bonus.  Did you hear that right, a BONUS!!!

I don’t know if you have been over to see J. Money at Budgets Are Sexy.  If you are over there check out his Million Dollar Club and Millionaire To-Do List.  J asks the rhetorical question, ever dream of being a millionaire.  Sure who hasn’t! Many of us work our life time to have amassed a nest egg upwards of a million dollars to retire comfortably and enjoy the company of our companion. 

If I am striving to have a million dollar nest egg by the time I retire, Peyton Manning just missed out on a bonus of 28 times that by a few days had the Colts kept him on board.  How much would Peyton have if he invested that $28 million with a 7% growth every year for 20 years?  He wants to retire early like many of us in the personal finance blogging world.  For the sake of this we will not consider inflation, because he didn’t get the money so this is hypothetical.  Obviously, if he were doing this analysis he would consider inflation because a dollar today is not that same as a dollar tomorrow.

Money Invested: $28,000,000

Years to grow (retirement): 20

Appreciation/Growth rate: 7%

In 2032, Peyton is going to have a whopping $108,351,164.95.

I hope to have a figure like that if you move the comma two places to the left. 

The magical secret to this formula is the finance principle of compounding.  Basically compounding is making more money on the money that you have already made.  I have a dollar that I invest in year one, after year two I have 2 dollars.  I keep those 2 dollars in there and invest the 2 dollars.  You are making the money that you earned work for you, through this principle of compounding.

 

 PHOTO BY: Angie Six

Finance and Malware: A Love Hate Relationship!

After nearly 3 days of inactivity on my part on my blog I am ready to hit the ground running.  Wow those last 3 days have been hectic.  I woke up Monday morning to find my site acting a little funny.  I didn’t think anything of it so I went about the day.  Monday night I get home and try to check the site to see some the statistics and how things are going.  I get a redirect that takes me to Adfly.

First thoughts are this could get expensive.  I have only been blogging 2 weeks if this gets to out of control, I wont be able to afford to drop a lot of money into the site especially since I am not making any money from the site at this point. 

Let’s just do a quick analysis – I have been blogging a few years like PDITF – Punch Debt in the Face, he had a post on there the other day that he was Consciously Choosing to Underearn.  He made a whopping $13,000 last year from blogging.  From my point of view there is just an expense at this point that is GREAT!

$13000 a year divided by the 12 months in a year is $1083.33 a month.  All months are created equal in this analysis so we go with the nice round 30 days in the month.   So $36.11 a day I make running this site weekends included.  I was down 3 days, so I lost out on $108.33 in hard earned cash and worse off you didn’t get any great blog posts by ME. 

Sit, relax, I know that was a tough one to swallow but we are back up and running today and everything is hunkey dorey!  I decided to fold my cards and contact Sucuri.net to help me out with my malware problem.  They started on the site mid day Wednesday and I had an email 30 minutes before midnight telling me that my site was malware clean. That was the best news I had in days. 

I could have lost 3 days of blogging income and $89 dollars for the year subscription to Sucuri.net monitoring.  Thankfully, I write for you and I am not making anything so I only lost $89.  Ahh that makes me feel better!

Lesson learned: Malware is a tough beast to contain and best left up to the professionals.  Throw a few bucks at the problem and let the professionals fix it and you will have much greater piece of mind.

PS: The customer service was so great at Sucuri, I decided to sign up for their affiliate program.  Check it out here!

 

PHOTO BY: RobynAnderson

Malware / Trojan / Virus – Is this a familiar sight for you?

malware, trojan, virus

Well today I had my first experience with Malware.  I was not able to post a regularly scheduled post as usual.  I woke up this morning to check out the website to find a bunch of popups on the site once I logged in.  Talk about shell shock and not having a clue what to do.  Thankfully my fellow Yakeziers were there to the rescue with some valuable posts to help me though this debacle.

I quickly got on the phone to my hosting company to see if they had any products that they offered for free to help me remove.  I don’t know if anyone has ever used Inmotion Hosting, but their customer service is outstanding.  I do not have a financial relationship with them at this time other than they are the hosting company.  Wow, I have never been so helpless with respect to technology.  They took care of me every step of the way.

As the day progressed as they were researching what was wrong all the worst ran through my head.  What if I need to do everything all over?  Would I throw in the towel and call it a day?  I had started the blog only a few weeks back but it would take quite a bit of work to get it back?  I know backups right, but the last one I had done was earlier this week and being a new site that is ages ago.  Needless to say I have set a schedule for the backups.

Sitting there thinking about Sucuri and how much it costs for a year subscription made me wonder if I was meant to be online and blogging.  Sure $90 dollars isn’t much to a website that has been around for a while, but to a recently built on it is a lot.  I could easily start getting nickeled and dimed by various websites offering a level of protection, I was new what do I know.

At the end of the day, InMotion contacted me to let me know that they had resolved the problem. Wheeewwwww

Needless to say a lot of time and aggravation I am here to say back up your site and read the forums on Yakezie, as they will provide you a lot of information that a newbie doesn’t know.  I came away unscathed and didn’t spend a dime, all in all a good day!

PHOTO BY: BitDefenderES

Week Dos Recap – I am fluent in Spanish, not really…

Wow a whole 2 weeks into personal finance blogging and I have to say I love doing it.  It has been a great journey thus far.  I am building some great friendships with the personal finance blogging community.  I have found the Yakezie Network great and everyone is very willing to help out. 

I learned that with blogging or your spouse you have to give love to receive love.  I am out there sharing the love as much as I can with my fellow bloggers.  Here is it close to midnight preparing the post after a long day of blogging and financial analysis at work.  I am not complaining, just stating that loving takes time. 

Here are some of the sites/post that I found quite interesting this week, as always they are in no particular order. 

If you just are looking for an all-around laugh this site is great to check out Punch Debt in the Face.

I have little sticky notes all over the place and a pocket full of folded up pieces of paper with various notes and ideas for blog posts.  Evernote is a great program that I saw that Thad at ThadThoughts gave a great review on.  Now I have it installed on my Razr and I love it! 

Here’s a site established a little before mine making similar progress to mine.  Very great read over here be sure to check him out.  Here is his reflection on this first few weeks of blogging, take a look at Modest Money.

Here are some frugal Valentine’s Day Ideas, they may be a little late now but heck they are even more frugal. Interesting read for the week.  Check it out here at the College Investor!

Here is an Article on preparing for your accountant at the end of the year.  Very thorough and well written piece by My Journey To Millions

Have a safe weekend and we will be back on Monday to share the great work week together!  Time is flying now a few months till the big 3-0, eek I am old!  Make sure to give these blogs some love and tell them Christopher sent ya!

-Christopher-