You can celebrate National Coffee Day on 9/29/17 with free or discounted coffee. Here is a link from USA Today that has a compilation of the available deals. Enjoy your java!
Archives for September 2017
Personal finance bloggers are always writing about ways to save money. Your health is an area that is often overlooked and is directly tied to how much money you are able to save. If you are unhealthy, you have to spend extra money on prescriptions, doctors visits, hospital stays, etc that could otherwise have been used to grow your nest egg. This is why it’s important to focus on preventative measures to avoid unnecessary medical costs down the line.
A study was recently published in the journal Obesity that looked at lifetime financial costs of being overweight or obese depending on age. Here is how the authors describe the method of their study:
A computational Markov model was developed that represented the BMI status, chronic health states, health outcomes, and associated costs (from various perspectives) for an adult at different age points throughout his or her lifetime.
The authors created a simulated person at various ages to investigate the potential third-party (medical bills), productivity losses (lost salary, doctor visits, passing away early), and societal costs (taxes, insurance premiums). They did this for ages 20 – 80 and for three categories (obesity vs. normal weight, obesity vs. overweight, and overweight vs. normal weight).
The study found on average that an obese 20 year old would spend at least $28,000 over their lifetime due to their weight. An obese 40 year old will spend more than $30,000, an obese 60 year old would spend more than $34,000, and an obese 80 year old would spend more than $16,000. The societal costs that you and I will have to spend on them is equally as large at over $28,000 for a 20 year old, over $31,000 for a 40 year old, over $34,000 for a 60 year old, and over $16,000 for a 80 year old.
These numbers are based on median wages, so making a high salary will result in higher productivity losses. Also, the study only looked at four potential medical conditions stemming from obesity (stroke, cancer, heart disease, and diabetes). Most likely these costs are an underestimate. They do not take into account the rising costs of healthcare in this country. They also do not look at other affects to your finances like term life insurance where you pay more if you are overweight.
If you have not considered losing weight yet to better your health, maybe you will consider it to better your finances. Start as soon as you can and don’t keep putting it off. Make a permanent resolution today instead of waiting for the New Year.
The Bank of America Travel Rewards card is my favorite travel credit card. The current offer for new cardholders is 20,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
Points can be redeemed in the following 3 ways:
- Travel Statement Credit (Best Value)*: 2,500 points = $25
- Gift Card: 3,125 points = $25
- Cash: 4,166 points = $25
Therefore, the 20,000 bonus points translates to $200 with the Travel Statement Credit.
There is the opportunity to earn bonus points through the Bank of America Travel Center and earn 3 points per $1 spent on qualifying purchases.
Other benefits include:
- 1.5x points per $1 spent on every purchase
- No blackout dates – any airline, any hotel, anytime
- No expiration on points
- No annual fee
- No foreign transaction fees
- Earn extra points with the enrolled Preferred Rewards program
My favorite benefits are no foreign transaction fees (3% on most credit cards) and extra points with the Preferred Rewards program.
Preferred Rewards Program
- Gold: Minimum Bank of America/Merrill Edge balances of $20,000; 25% points bonus = 1.875x points on every purchase
- Platinum: Minimum Bank of America/Merrill Edge balances of $50,000; 50% points bonus = 2.25x points on every purchase
- Platinum Honors: Minimum Bank of America/Merrill Edge balances of $100,000; 75% points bonus = 2.625x points on every purchase
Therefore, if you are eligible for Platinum Honors, you can get 2.625x points on all of your purchases with this card. This is one of the highest cashback amounts you can get from any non-rotating category credit card.
The Bank of America Travel Rewards card is one of the best cards for travel. It has no annual fee, no foreign transaction fees, and up to 2.625x points on all purchases. You also can get $200 tax free from the sign up bonus. By using this card while you travel you can carry less cash, save money on fees, and earn rewards points that can be applied to statement credits.
*List of categories qualifying for a Travel Statement Credit within 12 months:
Do you have an old iPod lying around? Chances are that the battery is low or dead. I use an iPod 4th Generation in my car and recently I noticed that the buttons were no longer functioning.
I took the iPod apart and saw that the battery was bulging up against the buttons. This means the battery is end of life and needs to be replaced. I should have realized this sooner because the iPod does not last long on a charge.
This iPod was purchased in 2004 (13 years old!) and I have changed the battery once before. Apple products last a really long time which is why they are such a good purchase.
The high price of Apple products was discussed in my recent post, Is the iPhone X Worth $999? Someone who thinks they’re being frugal might end up buying a handful of junkie electronics over a long time frame, spending several times one Apple device. Not to mention that Apple products typically have high resale values.
This is a very inexpensive repair. I went on eBay and searched for a US seller with the best rating and lowest price. The price for the 4th gen battery was $4.78 with free shipping. The battery arrived at my door about a week after I ordered it.
Next, I visited iFixit and followed the instructions on how to replace the battery. They have free repair instructions for all kinds of electronics. The repair took about 15 minutes and now I have a fully functioning iPod.
If you are fairly handy and would like to keep using your portable electronics, consider replacing the battery yourself. You can bring your device to a repair shop if the instructions indicate it is too difficult to do it yourself. The benefits of repairing old devices are the personal satisfaction of fixing something, not wasting money on new gadgets, and being environmentally friendly.
Readers, do you own any devices that you repair?
Are you constantly on the hunt for exciting meal ideas that you can cook at home and feel good about? If so, I will show you how to prepare and grill a healthy, easy, and frugal meal with minimal effort required. The steps I describe are flexible and can be adapted to suit your tastes.
Fire up your grill to its highest setting and start preparing your vegetables and meat!
Head on over to Picky Pinchers to read the rest.
Michelangelo Buonarroti was one of the most famous figures from the Italian Renaissance. He was a gifted artist, sculptor, architect, and poet. Several of Michelangelo’s works rank among the most famous in their fields. These works include the David, the Pieta, the Sistine Chapel paintings, St. Peter’s Basilica, and Capitoline Hill to name a few. I was recently reading about Michelangelo and I particularly like the following two quotes attributed to him.
The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark.
This quote applies to almost everything we do in life whether it is sports, music, work, or even personal finance. We must make sure that we are not setting goals that can be easily achieved but rather set goals that are truly breathtaking once completed.
If people knew how hard I had to work to gain my mastery, it would not seem so wonderful at all.
Some people assume that natural talent is why others are successful. While some talent is necessary, hard work is much more important. If you look at the masters in different areas of life most of them got there by hard work and dedication rather than on natural ability alone.