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Here's How: Shorten a Door Bottom Without Splintering

Consumer / Here's How /

Shorten a Door Bottom Without Splintering

Dear James: We want to replace old, crushed carpeting with thick pile-type carpeting, so I probably need to shorten the door. What is the best way to cut it without splintering? -- Tony G.

Dear Tony: Instead of new carpeting, you might want to consider installing engineered hardwood or laminate ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Meatballs Make Meals Manageable

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

Dinnertime can be hard with hectic schedules, but planning ahead and having meals ready in your freezer is a lifesaver. Registered dietitian Brenda Ponichtera offers a great idea: delicious baked meatballs, frozen and ready for multiple recipes.


This recipe produces healthy, tasty and quick meatballs to serve now or freeze for ...Read more

Column: Coronavirus may be a new factor when California's housing debate reignites

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

People fleeing cities in an attempt to outrun the coronavirus have caused consternation in rural hinterlands and warm-weather refuges.

But the COVID-19 crisis has triggered a longer-term discussion about the health risks in densely packed cities and whether the crisis will lead to living quarters being more spread out in the future.

In the ...Read more

How to talk to your landlord about rent if coronavirus closures have affected your paycheck

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

For many out-of-work Americans, the first of the month looms larger now than it did just four short weeks ago.

Even if your landlord has announced rent cuts or is helping you cover the rent due, you may be wondering just what to do on the first of the month.

You're not alone. Two weeks ago, a record 3.28 million Americans filed unemployment ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: The High Cost of Convenience

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

Dear Mary: I work out at a gym regularly, and I like to drink a protein shake or smoothie afterward to optimize the benefits of my workout. Shakes and smoothies at the gym can run $4-$6 and more, but they sure are convenient. Do you have any suggestions for making my own when I get home without a lot of muss and fuss? I have a feeling I could ...Read more

'I could feel balls of hair just falling out': DevaCurl customers are quitting the brand, alleging products cause hair loss, skin reactions and health issues

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

CHICAGO - Leslie Gomez noticed her ringlet curls becoming wavy and her hair thinning last summer, but she didn't panic until her mother told her, "You look like you're balding." Before that, she had a head full of shiny, perfect curls, she said, and she was horrified.

"That sent me into hysterics, because I'm thinking that ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: When Batteries Are Just Faking It

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

Just when I think I've heard every possible way to save time and money every day, I open my mail to find new and clever ideas I'd never thought of. No doubt about it, I have the smartest readers in the world (good-looking, too!).


I learned this tip by accident, and it has saved me a bundle. If your kids are constantly in and out of ...Read more

Blair Kamin: Will the open-plan office make you vulnerable to coronavirus? Or will the virus crisis force offices to become safer?

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

Even before coronavirus struck, critics were slamming the layout used in most American offices -- the open plan -- as noisy, distracting, stress-inducing, and nowhere near the teamwork booster its designers made it out to be.

"Open-plan offices are now the dumbest management fad of all time." Inc. magazine proclaimed in 2018, pouncing on a ...Read more

Carla Fried: Term life insurance is cheap and most adults should have plenty

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

All right, we're all freaking out about a global pandemic and the potential financial chaos that could follow. It's beyond our control, which is frustrating. So, here's one crucial financial planning item within your control that's also inexpensive and easy to obtain: term life insurance.

Chances are you can buy a policy without ever leaving ...Read more

How the coronavirus stimulus package can help retirees and savers

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

The House gave final passage Friday to a massive $2.2 trillion stimulus package intended to help businesses and workers cope with the economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

But goodies for Americans saving for retirement, and those already retired, are also tucked inside.

"The bill is complex, so check with a tax specialist or ...Read more

To pay or not to pay? A coronavirus conundrum

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

SAN DIEGO -- Melodie Holmen really wanted to have her hair cut and colored Saturday, and her hairdresser was eager to comply.

But Holmen's spouse is a cancer survivor. Spending time with another person, the San Diego resident felt, was just too risky.

"So when I mentioned my husband's health as a concern, she immediately understood," Holmen ...Read more

Susan Tompor: Coronavirus confusion continues in 2020 tax season

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

Sure, we thought the chaos and confusion of last year's tax season was long behind us.

This year, they told us, was bound to be better as people became more familiar with the new tax rules that initially showed up on 2018 tax returns.

Then the coronavirus crisis took hold in the United States. And 2020 tax season has become more confusing by ...Read more

Wall Street is quietly telling companies not to draw their loans

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

NEW YORK -- The biggest U.S. banks have been quietly discouraging some of America's safest borrowers from tapping existing credit lines amid record corporate drawdowns on lending facilities, according to people familiar with the behind-the-scenes conversations.

For Wall Street, it's not an issue of liquidity so much as profitability. Investment...Read more

'All my income is gone': Tenants, landlords voice coronavirus fears as rents come due

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

LOS ANGELES -- Tenants and landlords across the country are bracing for Wednesday, when April rents are due just as thousands of people have lost their jobs and most business have been shut down as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Government officials have provided certain protection against evictions for renters and limited mortgage ...Read more

4 ways to prep your home for remote work

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

If you're used to going into the office every day, dusting off your desk to work from home can be a tough transition. Fortunately, there are things you can do to prepare a home workspace that's both pleasant and productive - even if you don't have the square footage for a room dedicated to doing your job. Here's a look at a few ways to make ...Read more

Social Graces: How to tell people you don't want to shake hands because of the coronavirus

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

Q: How should you tell people you don't want to shake hands or have other physical contact because of coronavirus?

A: Misery does not love company. With more questions than answers, the world is feeling the effects of the coronavirus. But whether it's this new disease or the common cold, always be considerate when you're in public spaces. A ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Sneaky Ways to Save Big

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

I blame it on my friend Kathleen that I caught the sneaky savings bug. One day, years ago, she told me her secret. Whenever she wrote a check, she'd enter an incorrect amount in the register by rounding up to the next dollar -- sometimes five. Once a year, she'd reconcile her account and discover, to her utter joy, enough "found" money in the ...Read more

Art of Design: Surprise

Consumer / Art of Design /


The difference between an average room and an outstanding room is dependent on an impalpable element of surprise. The next time you walk into a room that you like, if you observe closely, you will find things that are surprising. That moment may happen around the art that was chosen or the type of accessories selected. Sometimes, the ...Read more

Hot Property: Action, embezzlement and intrigue in the Hollywood Hills

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

LOS ANGELES -- In 2012, Malaysian businessman Jho Low turned heads when he dropped a whopping $38.98 million on a Hollywood Hills mansion, redefining what a home could sell for in the celebrity-filled neighborhood.

Not long after, a federal investigation alleged that Low bought the showplace with money embezzled from the 1Malaysia Development ...Read more

Real estate Q&A: What should I do if I can't pay my mortgage or rent because of coronavirus?

Consumer / Home and Consumer News /

Q: What should I do if I can't pay my mortgage or rent because of coronavirus?

A: The lockdown and social distancing in response to the coronavirus pandemic have put many people into a precarious financial position as businesses have closed, and people are sheltering at home. I began writing this column at the height of the mortgage meltdown ...Read more