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Today's Prudent Financial/Credit Move

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Small changes add up. Post yours in this thread.

 

Today:

 

I took our auto insurance policies off the monthly payment plan.

 

$1 a month in service fees for monthly billing isn't a lot of money, but it is $12 a year too much.

 

We'll just pay the bills in full when we receive them, like we're adults.

 

I'm putting the $1 per month toward principal reduction on our mortgage.

 

I really am.

 

 

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I was listening to a ...left coast podcast, during which, a biomechanist pointed out the irony in someone driving to a gym to walk on a treadmill, as well as driving to a grocery store to buy organic, pre-sliced beets.

The fuel spent driving to the gym, only to walk on a machine could have been money and time better spent walking to the grocery store to get the beets, or even better, planting beets in the back yard and growing them yourself.

So, I bought some bell pepper seeds, as well as some Squash and Jalapeños. Next weekend, I'll be digging a shallow trench to plant them. (I'm in the Gulf Coast area. Winter is now a distant memory.)

 

 

Another tip - use an empty plastic milk jug, fill it with water, and place it in your toilet tank to displace a 1/2 gallon of water. Should save you 1/2 gallon each time you flush.

 

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Small changes add up. Post yours in this thread.

 

Today:

 

I took our auto insurance policies off the monthly payment plan.

 

$1 a month in service fees for monthly billing isn't a lot of money, but it is $12 a year too much.

 

We'll just pay the bills in full when we receive them, like we're adults.

 

I'm putting the $1 per month toward principal reduction on our mortgage.

 

I really am.

 

 

I did this early this month and put the entire premium about $1200 on my BGR to save $30 and meet SUB.

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Another tip - use an empty plastic milk jug, fill it with water, and place it in your toilet tank to displace a 1/2 gallon of water. Should save you 1/2 gallon each time you flush.

 

Good idea!

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I canceled myFICO today and I'm going to add $29.95 a month to the extra principal payments we are making on our mortgage.

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Good points!

 

Monthly auto insurance doesn't make sense unless you're extremely cash-strapped or don't have the credit to pay for it in a lump-sum. Our auto insurance is $900 per year and the fire insurance is about another $600. I have the due dates on both policies to land in November. A month earlier, I open up a new card each year with a $1500k+ minimum spend to pay for the premiums. In Feb, I do the same for the house taxes, and so forth. Whenever you can consolidate expenses into great SUB's for new cards, you're really getting a lot more bang for your buck.

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I have no idea how this will turn out - but I really like Spaghetti Squash. But, even in season, I don't like the idea of spending $1 to $1.98 per pound for one. So, I gathered all the seeds from the last one I had, and have planted them in my back yard. I'll know in 90 days or so if the 5 minutes with a shovel is worthwhile.

I also planted some green peppers and Jalapenos, as well. Time will tell. I figure if I can save a few bucks on groceries, I can sink that change into my IRA, and then the index funds when I max it out.

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I have no idea how this will turn out - but I really like Spaghetti Squash. But, even in season, I don't like the idea of spending $1 to $1.98 per pound for one. So, I gathered all the seeds from the last one I had, and have planted them in my back yard. I'll know in 90 days or so if the 5 minutes with a shovel is worthwhile.

 

I also planted some green peppers and Jalapenos, as well. Time will tell. I figure if I can save a few bucks on groceries, I can sink that change into my IRA, and then the index funds when I max it out.

Funny

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I canceled myFICO today and I'm going to add $29.95 a month to the extra principal payments we are making on our mortgage.

 

Good move. I keep forgetting to cancel the damn thing. Haven't looked at it in a few months. Haven't even been tracking a baddie in over 6 years and the entertainment value has long gone. Just another subscription that seems to automatically get renewed every year unless I get my lazy butt to cancel them.

 

OTOH, does it matter? Not really. Mouse nuts. OTOH, mouse nuts add up (multiply) and pretty soon you are looking at a lot of effing rodents.

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Another tip - use an empty plastic milk jug, fill it with water, and place it in your toilet tank to displace a 1/2 gallon of water. Should save you 1/2 gallon each time you flush.

 

A lot easier just to bend the rod connecting your float down. You can easily adjust the water level in your tank this way.

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Monthly plans on auto insurance (like with Progressive) eat up like $50-60 every six months, so yours is pretty good only being a dollar.

 

Yup. I get about $50 per six months knocked off by paying the entire invoice at once. The reduced amount does not entirely reflect savings on billing costs. Apparently insurance companies have found a significant correlation between paying invoices in full and fewer claims. Source: my insurance agent.

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I have 5 or 6 different kinds of hair products in the drawer.

 

I'm going to use them all up before I buy any more.

 

For days I don't leave the house I'll just use the crap I don't like very much.

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I have 5 or 6 different kinds of hair products in the drawer.

 

I'm going to use them all up before I buy any more.

 

For days I don't leave the house I'll just use the crap I don't like very much.

Why even use hair products if you aren't leaving the house and don't care how you look?

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I have 5 or 6 different kinds of hair products in the drawer.

 

I'm going to use them all up before I buy any more.

 

For days I don't leave the house I'll just use the crap I don't like very much.

Why even use hair products if you aren't leaving the house and don't care how you look?

 

 

Loe6BlT.jpg

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I have no idea how this will turn out - but I really like Spaghetti Squash. But, even in season, I don't like the idea of spending $1 to $1.98 per pound for one. So, I gathered all the seeds from the last one I had, and have planted them in my back yard. I'll know in 90 days or so if the 5 minutes with a shovel is worthwhile.

I also planted some green peppers and Jalapenos, as well. Time will tell. I figure if I can save a few bucks on groceries, I can sink that change into my IRA, and then the index funds when I max it out.

 

I think you're better off to purchase good seeds, but thats JMO. Lots of commercially available produce is hybrids that aren't true breeding or have been bred for shelf life as opposed to taste/nutrition.

 

If you get good seeds from Seeds of Change, Seeds Trust etc you can find better heirloom varieties that will be true breeding and you can reliably harvest those seeds for future seasons as well as lick varieties most suitable for your location.

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Today I canceled rental car coverage on the car I have in California. The other two cars we keep at the Mud Hut are next.

 

We would have to have an accident AND max the payout on the coverage ($500-600) once every nine years just to break even. This is too small of a potential loss to insure.

 

The savings goes toward extra principal payments on our mortgage.

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Today I canceled rental car coverage on the car I have in California. The other two cars we keep at the Mud Hut are next.

 

We would have to have an accident AND max the payout on the coverage ($500-600) once every nine years just to break even. This is too small of a potential loss to insure.

 

The savings goes toward extra principal payments on our mortgage.

 

Coverage offerings have shifted away from primarily protecting against "catastrophic" losses toward averting unpleasant yet affordable losses. Because insurance typically involves a substantial premium over the long-term protection afforded, it's generally going to be a winning bet to avoid insuring losses that you otherwise can bear with modest hardship.

 

Higher coverage deductibles on home and auto are one of the first places where significant dollars can be recovered in the long run. As you suggest, rental car coverage is another option that should be scrutinized. Even road service coverage typically protects against a seldom used, relatively low cost risk. And you really should have your head examined if you opt for trip protection coverage, except under unusual circumstances.

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I haven't carried rental coverage in a long time, plus I have my deductibles set at $1,000 on my insurance. I don't get charged a monthly fee (nor is there a PIF discount), so I just pay monthly, taking advantage of the 2% discount for auto-pay (to my CC so it is a win-win). My cars both get roadside for free, so no need for that coverage either. If they didn't I would just stick to AAA as that membership usually pays for itself during the year via discounts.

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Today I canceled rental car coverage on the car I have in California. The other two cars we keep at the Mud Hut are next.

 

We would have to have an accident AND max the payout on the coverage ($500-600) once every nine years just to break even. This is too small of a potential loss to insure.

 

The savings goes toward extra principal payments on our mortgage.

 

 

This meager insurance savings inspired me to review our entire insurance situation.

 

First, we've decided to move all of our policies (home, auto and umbrella) from State Farm to Amica.

 

Price-wise using comparable coverages and deductibles it was about a wash, but Amica is a much better insurance company by all accounts I could find. The change in insurer alone is worthwhile.

 

Some of the coverages and deductibles no longer made sense. By making some prudent adjustments we ended up with a total savings of 7.9%.

 

I'm taking (annual savings/12) and adding this amount to our mortgage payments every month beginning with 6/1/18 payment.

Edited by cv91915

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Today I canceled rental car coverage on the car I have in California. The other two cars we keep at the Mud Hut are next.

 

We would have to have an accident AND max the payout on the coverage ($500-600) once every nine years just to break even. This is too small of a potential loss to insure.

 

The savings goes toward extra principal payments on our mortgage.

 

 

This meager insurance savings inspired me to review our entire insurance situation.

 

First, we've decided to move all of our policies (home, auto and umbrella) from State Farm to Amica.

 

Price-wise using comparable coverages and deductibles it was about a wash, but Amica is a much better insurance company by all accounts I could find. The change in insurer alone is worthwhile.

 

Some of the coverages and deductibles no longer made sense. By making some prudent adjustments we ended up with a total savings of 7.9%.

 

I'm taking (annual savings/12) and adding this amount to our mortgage payments every month beginning with 6/1/18 payment.

 

 

 

Agree 100% with this. I have had Amica for the majority of the last 20 years, and have zero complaints. Handled a couple of claims efficiently while allowing the use of OEM parts, always get quick responses via customer service. I had SF for 6 months when I first moved to CA...biggest mistake ever. At one time I moved away from Amica because the cost savings was significant enough (~$600/year IIRC) but since I have been in CA Amica has always been close enough.

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Today I canceled rental car coverage on the car I have in California. The other two cars we keep at the Mud Hut are next.

 

We would have to have an accident AND max the payout on the coverage ($500-600) once every nine years just to break even. This is too small of a potential loss to insure.

 

The savings goes toward extra principal payments on our mortgage.

 

 

This meager insurance savings inspired me to review our entire insurance situation.

 

First, we've decided to move all of our policies (home, auto and umbrella) from State Farm to Amica.

 

Price-wise using comparable coverages and deductibles it was about a wash, but Amica is a much better insurance company by all accounts I could find. The change in insurer alone is worthwhile.

 

Some of the coverages and deductibles no longer made sense. By making some prudent adjustments we ended up with a total savings of 7.9%.

 

I'm taking (annual savings/12) and adding this amount to our mortgage payments every month beginning with 6/1/18 payment.

 

 

Agree 100% with this. I have had Amica for the majority of the last 20 years, and have zero complaints. Handled a couple of claims efficiently while allowing the use of OEM parts, always get quick responses via customer service. I had SF for 6 months when I first moved to CA...biggest mistake ever. At one time I moved away from Amica because the cost savings was significant enough (~$600/year IIRC) but since I have been in CA Amica has always been close enough.

 

 

Thanks for the feedback on Amica.

 

I've had the California policies with State Farm since 1999. My agent had the very most helpful and responsive office manager you could ever ask for.

 

She moved out of state a few months ago. I haven't spoken to the agent himself since I took out the original policies, so my loyalty died when she left.

 

The State Farm agent in Mudland has had a lot of turnover in his office, which has been annoying. I've never met OR spoken to him.

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I've adjusted my federal withholding a couple of times in 2018, and it's finally where I want it in order to prevent a recurrence of the largish tax refunds we've been getting.

 

Since the amount has been fluctuating with my W-4 adjustments, I've been doing one-off additional mortgage principal payments with the extra cash up until now.

 

Now that this is a predictable stream of money coming in I'm going to make the fixed amount a permanent addition to our mortgage payment until the loan is fully repaid.

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Another tip - use an empty plastic milk jug, fill it with water, and place it in your toilet tank to displace a 1/2 gallon of water. Should save you 1/2 gallon each time you flush.

 

Would make sense if you were going over the minimum amount of water in a given month...living by myself, even with a pool that occasionally requires topping off, I don't hit the 1K gallon minimum that I get billed for. As such, I am not worried about 50-100 gallons in a given month...

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Today I canceled rental car coverage on the car I have in California. The other two cars we keep at the Mud Hut are next.

 

We would have to have an accident AND max the payout on the coverage ($500-600) once every nine years just to break even. This is too small of a potential loss to insure.

 

The savings goes toward extra principal payments on our mortgage.

 

 

This meager insurance savings inspired me to review our entire insurance situation.

 

First, we've decided to move all of our policies (home, auto and umbrella) from State Farm to Amica.

 

Price-wise using comparable coverages and deductibles it was about a wash, but Amica is a much better insurance company by all accounts I could find. The change in insurer alone is worthwhile.

 

Some of the coverages and deductibles no longer made sense. By making some prudent adjustments we ended up with a total savings of 7.9%.

 

I'm taking (annual savings/12) and adding this amount to our mortgage payments every month beginning with 6/1/18 payment.

 

 

The move to Amica is complete.

 

Only the auto policy on the Mudmobiles offered a pay-in-full discount, so we opted to pay for that one upfront.

 

The rest of the policies are on a monthly auto-pay plan, which costs nothing additional.

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