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Everyday Cheapskate: Parents, Stop Taking out Parent Loans for Your Kids' College

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

As a parent, you are responsible for taking care of your child, but you are also responsible for taking care of yourself. Taking out loans so that your child can enroll in the college of her dreams may sink your dreams of ever retiring.

Contrary to the advice you will get from many financial aid officers, parents should not borrow money to pay ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: 6 15-Minute Projects to Get Your Utility Bill to Rock Bottom

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

Here's some good news: At least 120 utility companies have lowered electric, gas or water rates due to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which cut the corporate rate from 35 percent to 21 percent. Utility companies are passing on the tax savings in the form of lower rates for customers.

I hope your utility company is among that 120 and has let you ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Get Organized to Put Money in Your Pocket and a Smile on Your Face

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

Has this ever happened to you? While searching for the Valentine's Day centerpiece, you stumble across the Christmas wrap you bought at the half-off-after-holiday sale two years ago. You still don't know where the centerpiece is.

Or you discover six partially full peanut butter jars in the pantry while putting away the new one you just bought ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: The First Rule of Borrowing Money: Don't Be Stupid

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

It's true that "debt" is a four-letter word. I can count the letters in the word to prove it, or simply look to my dark financial past to conclude that debt can be most troubling.

Still, the truth remains that not all debt is created equal, nor is every type of loan hazardous to your wealth.

There is a world of a difference between, say, a ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: How to Stop Hating Your Carpet

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

When we remodeled our home, we replaced some of the carpet with dark hardwood. What a revelation. Now I could see the dirt and dust, and, honestly, I couldn't believe what accumulated in such a short time on those wood floors. Of course I never saw it on the carpet, but now I know it was there all along.

On the one hand, I love carpet for the ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: You Need an Allowance

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

It used to be that when I felt broke, I used my bevy of credit cards to chase away the feeling. As long as I could spend money, it felt like I had money.

My credit cards were my antidepressant. And I tell you reluctantly, they did the job -- for a while, until the pleasant feeling vanished because I was broke again and needed another fix.

The ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: Best Coffee Hacks, Tips and Tricks

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

Whenever I write about my love of coffee -- which, admittedly, has turned me into a coffee snob -- reader feedback is as enthusiastic as it is voluminous. I'm happy to know I'm not alone in my snobbery.

Many of you bring up interesting points -- and questions, too. What do you do with brewed coffee that is no longer ideally fresh but too good ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: 3 Vacuum Cleaners I Use Almost Every Day and Wouldn't Want to Live Without

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

If you have hard flooring, carpet and/or flat surfaces in your home, which just about covers every possibility, there are three vacuum cleaners that deserve your attention: an upright, a cordless stick vac and a cordless handheld. These are the three worker bees that I own, love and don't want to live without.


Everyday Cheapskate: 9 More Super-Creative Ways to Stretch a Buck

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

Sometimes the best way to stretch a buck is to look in the most unlikely places. I'm a huge fan of the fresh produce at 99 Cents Only stores. And milk, as compared with the price at my supermarket, is a bargain at the Walgreens across the street. But who knew we could decorate our homes with items from places like Dollar General? Our first ...Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: The Case of the Insolvent Parents

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

The bumper sticker is pretty funny the first time you see it: "Get Even: Live Long Enough to Become a Problem to Your Kids." Ha-ha, right? Well, not really. Today's first question comes from a reader who feels like this is happening right now and her parents are not even that old.

Dear Mary: My husband and I have been debt-free for three years....Read more

Everyday Cheapskate: How to Make Your Own Homemade Glass Cleaner and Why You Should

Consumer / Everyday Cheapskate /

If there's one thing you can confidently never buy ever again, it's glass cleaner. You already have ingredients around the house that will clean glass, windows and mirrors -- from vinegar to vodka (true!) to warm, soapy water. The problem is that these items have significant drawbacks when used as single ingredients.

Vinegar will do a fairly ...Read more


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