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Five Tips To Make The Most Of Your Frequent Flyer Programs

As I was cleaning out my dresser drawer the other day, it dawned on me just how many different frequent flyer programs I had signed up for over the years.   If anyone wanted to challenge me to a game of  airline or hotel point card roulette, I would be ready to play at any time.    Fortunately, I’ve gotten some software that I use personally, and with clients, that tabulates all of my frequent flyer programs including airline, hotel, car, and credit cards in one place every single night (e-mail me at ted@oxygenfinancial.net if you want one of these).  I can even see when points are posted from my last trip or when I have used them from my most recent vacation.      Once you know exactly what you have for frequent flyer programs, then comes the hard part of ‘how to’ make the most of what you have.   Here are five tips that can help you stretch your wallet. Look For ...

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The Hampton Inn Has Valet Parking?

I’m pretty certain that many of you like to score a ‘deal’ just like me.  Whether it comes in the form of a 2 for 1 at your favorite restaurant or a 50% off sale at the department store, getting a deal just makes you feel like a winner.    Time and time again as I give you ‘smart money moves’ tips, I’ll notice little things in life that can make a difference in your wallet when you pay attention to your purchases.    Several months ago, I gave you my thoughts on the whole ‘additional tip’ line when it comes to guaranteed gratuity/ additional gratuity and how it is presented with your dinner bill.    This past weekend, the Hampton Inn gave me some blogging fodder for the week as I reviewed my check out bill. My daughter is part of a swimming club in North Georgia.   At periodic times during the year, they have an interstate meet at an overnight destination.   ...

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Do You Want A Pay Raise?

When we perform well at work, most of us expect that our bosses will reward us with a bonus or a pay raise.   Sometimes it can be very elusive on how to actually get an increase in your paycheck, but wouldn’t it be great to know how you could control your destiny.   This doesn’t mean having to suck up for your mid-year review or make a mad dash to sell in the 4th quarter.   For certain, we don’t want to end up like Clark Griswold and open our bonus paychecks only to find out we were enrolled in the Jelly of the Month Club.    Actually, recent studies have shown that exercise can have a dramatic impact on whether you get a pay raise at work even though it’s never written in any manual or book at work. Vasilios Kosteas, economics professor at Cleveland State University and the study’s author, told SmartMoney that his study shows that exercise leads to higher ...

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Do You Eat Out Too Much?

If you’ve noticed that your disposable income may be sneaking out the back door of your family finances, one of the causes could be between the lunches and dinners that you eat out every week.    With our family of five, I’ve noticed that even eating out at a basic Darden casual fare restaurant can run $60 to $80 with basic fountain drinks.    Add in a couple of appetizers and you could be reaching $100 for a family of five.    In addition, your lunches at the local deli in the basement of your building or a casual fast fare type restaurant can set you back $10 a day pretty quickly during the work week.    Total up all of your lunches and dinners, and you could be losing those valuable disposable dollars that can help you build a college education or retirement fund.    Dining out and entertainment expenses have become a blurred line in the family budgeting process because of so many ...

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VIDEO | When Should You Replace Your Old Car

Published on Sep 4, 2012 When it comes to making smart money moves, our family has never been a big fan of buying a new car. Read FULL ARTICLE Here – http://bit.ly/Te3HAf – In fact, the last new car that we bought was back in 1993 when we really did the math on how much smarter it is to buy a used car that is somewhere between two to four years old versus getting a new one. While getting a new car should be a well thought out planned purchase, it often falls into the camp of a spur of the moment purchase depending on when you get in the mood. In a sound financial plan, you should begin to save for the (new) used car purchase the moment that you pay off the old purchase. If you are like me and pay for your cars in cash, you should begin to immediately build a side fund so you can pay for that ...

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When Should You Replace Your Old Car For A New One?

When it comes to making smart money moves, our family has never been a big fan of buying a new car.   In fact, the last new car that we bought was back in 1993 when we really did the math on how much smarter it is to buy a used car that is somewhere between two to four years old versus getting a new one.   While getting a new car should be a well thought out planned purchase, it often falls into the camp of a spur of the moment purchase depending on when you get in the mood.    In a sound financial plan, you should begin to save for the (new) used car purchase the moment that you pay off the old purchase.  If you are like me and pay for your cars in cash, you should begin to immediately build a side fund so you can pay for that next automobile purchase in cash as well.    So the ...

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College Education Or Entrepreneurship?

Generation X parents continue to face the challenging uphill climb of saving for their children’s college education.   For a Generation X couple that has their first child here in 2012, the cost for a private college at $50,000 a year will cost over $518,000 of total dollars at a 5% inflation rate.   As crazy as that sounds, a parent would have to save $1,085 per month in today’s dollars to be able to reach that goal.    For most parent’s the thought of saving this much money to pay for the cost of education for just ONE child can be downright daunting.  Many of us believe that the cost of college education cannot defy gravity forever, but to this point there has been no stopping the rising costs for a four year degree. During the formidable teenage years, many parents help guide their children toward getting excellent grades in school, playing some sort of athletic sports, and filling their resume with ...

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I’m a Freelancer – Should I Set Up a Corporation?

If you are starting a business as a freelancer, you have a choice of the legal type of business structure (entity) that you choose. There are advantages and disadvantages among becoming a Subchapter S Corporation, a C Corporation, a Limited Liability Corporation, a Sole Proprietor, or a Partnership. Since there are both legal and tax implications attached to each type, it is best to get your lawyer, financial advisor, and/or accountant involved in the decision making process. Most people want to pay a little tax as possible, and incur the least amount of paperwork overhead when running their own business. In this article we will detail the facts that you need to consider, along with their consequences, so you can have a good starting point of reference when you meet with your legal and tax professionals. About Being A Sole Proprietor This type of entity will happen de facto if you choose no other form of entity for your business. ...

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Can you name the 18 small business tax cuts?

It’s hard for all us not to get political during an election year.    In the next several months you’ll see more negative mudslinging between the Presidential candidates in a war of negativity and word twisting that I don’t believe we have ever experienced before.    Since I am a small business owner, one of my points of view during this election is to look out for and inform other small business owners.    Since I think small business owners will be the real engine of job growth over the next four years, owners need to really look closely at what the candidates are proposing to do to support the growth of small business. It’s funny to me that all we hear about is that over the past four years there have been 18 small business tax cuts by the current administration to drive small business growth.  If you try to Google the 18 small business tax cuts, you’ll find out quickly that ...

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