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How to Save Money on Your Apartment Rental

  • June 14, 2021

For renters of all backgrounds, you probably know how much of a hassle saving your income can be. Apartment renters who have to deal with making ends meet can sometimes be pressed for cash. Saving money may seem like a never-ending cycle, especially if you do not know how to budget accordingly. 

Thankfully, saving money is much more feasible than you might think. With a bit of responsible budgeting and patience, you can easily save money for apartment rentals. As long as you manage your finances through a long-term plan, you’ll be able to keep your costs low for the foreseeable future. 

Check out this following guide on how to save money on your next apartment rental:

Income Report 

When saving money on your apartment rental, you need to assess all your income sources. For example, your salary and any other monthly income should be recorded down on a document. Then, take a look at your general expenses each month. Since rent will be a major part, record any other present expenses in this document. 

This document is what financial experts describe as an income report. Although this report won’t directly save you money in the short term, organizing the figures is crucial. It gives you a direct insight into how much you are making, versus how much you are paying. Plus, you’ll be able to see the things currently being paid for that you don’t really need!

Roommates

While splitting rent can be somewhat hard to do on your own, it doesn’t have to be that way forever. An easy way to significantly cut down on your rent payments is to find a roommate. Roommates are a sure-fire way to help you manage costs. The more roommates you have, the more help you'll get in splitting the apartment rental. 

In order to find a roommate, you’ll have to put out an advertisement on an applicable website, such as Craigslist. Then, be sure to get familiar with the potential candidates. You should always select a roommate that you are comfortable living with. That way, potential disagreements can be mitigated. The last thing you want is an unreliable roommate who can't pay the rent on time!

Lease Negotiation 

At some point, the lease of the apartment will eventually be brought up. This agreement is a legal means of allowing you to rent the apartment accordingly. Leases can be signed in a variety of terms, depending on your needs for the short and long term. For long-term leases, it may be wise to negotiate at the time of the lease’s renewal. 

It helps to be a good tenant when living in an apartment. The rapport you build with your landlord can go a long way in potential negotiations. Once the renewal time approaches, use this to your advantage in negotiating lower rent costs. Any little reduction can go a long way to saving money! 

Parking Space & Commuting Alternatives 

If you have a vehicle, you probably know how pricey the car can end up being. To save money in the long run, consider selling your vehicle. This allows you to give up your parking space to the apartment, which can tack on additional costs to your rent. Try to offer this to your landlord in exchange for reduced rent. 

While you are at it, it might be better in the long term to use various transportation methods to move around. Owning a vehicle can be a pricey investment, especially if you have troubles in saving money. If selling your car is at all possible, take a look at other commuting modes available. 

For example, busses are always running in abundance. Or you can try taking the subway to work each day, so long as you time it right. Since there are so many methods of transportation available, you’d be surprised as to how easy saving money can end up being. 

Apartment Rental Tips

There are other tips and tricks to help you save money on your apartment rentals:

  • Winter Rental: Renting an apartment in the winter could be beneficial. The summer season can bring higher costs of rent due to college graduates flooding the market. Finding an apartment in the winter can be much better financially speaking. 
  • Private Rental: Instead of living in an apartment that is run by a corporation, private apartment rentals could work out better. Whether they are owned by a family or third-party, lower rent costs are much more realistic to discover here. 

New Location: Finally, it might be time to find a new location altogether, if monthly rent ends up being challenging to meet. Take your time to research new markets in various areas, and don’t forget to seek out professional help if needed!

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What to Know Before You Sign That Loan Agreement

  • June 14, 2021

Many of us will take out a loan at some point in our lives, and it is important that we fully understand what we are getting ourselves into before we do so. This is a significant financial commitment and you need to be prepared for what it entails.

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How Much Should You Put Into Savings Each Month

  • June 14, 2021

 

It is not uncommon for that number to be zero for a lot of people actually!

But if you aren’t saving, you aren’t helping yourself or your future out. (Or your kids!)

So, even though it can be challenging, finding ways to save is crucial for your financial health. And the first step to saving is knowing how much to save.

Thankfully there is actually a guideline on that! 

The 50/30/20 budget rule is a guide to budgeting and saving. It was developed by Elizabeth Warren, a U.S. Senator from Massachusetts and a Harvard bankruptcy expert.

She and her daughter, Amelia Warren Tyagi co-wrote a personal finance book that details the budgeting rule: “All Your Worth: The Ultimate Lifetime Money Plan.” 

According to this budgeting rule, 50% of your income is what should be spent on your needs, 30% should go towards wants, and 20% is how much of your income you should save each month. And that amount should be calculated from your after-tax (take home) pay.

50% Needs

Half of your take-home income should be spent on all your necessities. Your housing payment, groceries, utility bills and car payment are a few examples.

It can add up to a lot! Sit down and calculate the amount your needs total. If it is more than half of your paycheck, you may need to adjust your lifestyle. Rent a room out, or sell your car for something less expensive.

30% Wants

Thankfully you get to spend 30% on whatever you want! That is a pretty decent percentage. So figure out what that number is at the beginning of the month and don’t go over it.

Wants can include entertainment, travel, clothing and going out to eat. It’s basically your fun budget. 

But one thing to note is that certain items like cable t.v. may seem like a “need” but they actually fall into the “want” bucket. So, make sure you are categorizing things correctly.

20% Savings

You should be saving 20% each month. The reason for this number is that it is what is estimated to be what you need to save in order to retire. 

Make sure you are saving your money in the right spot. Opt for a high-yield savings account that gives you a percentage of extra money. Or save your money into a 401K to really increase your savings!

Take advantage in any way you can. If you work for a company with a 401K match, make sure you contribute the maximum allowed for the match! That means you are making more money. If your company will match 100% of your 401k deduction up to 6% of your salary, then contribute the full 6%. That way you aren’t leaving any money on the table.

One common question with the 50/30/20 rule is where do my credit card payments fit into this? 

The minimum payments you have on debt is actually classified as a “need.” So, it falls in your 50% needs bucket.

But getting out of debt is crucial for your financial health. So if you can make extra payments each month on debt, it is a good idea.

Maybe use some of your 30% wants allocation to pay extra on debt instead. In the long run it is worth it. Or find an extra part-time job or side hustle like this AirBnb one that allows you to make extra!

The important thing with saving is that you do it! Even if all you can save is a few dollars a month, start today. It is worth it!

BIO:

I’m Cara Berkeley, a blogger, investment property owner, and full-time marketing executive. I’ve learned that thinking outside the box can make all the difference and want to share my tips and tricks on smart money management. My blog at www.pennypolly.com  is all about helping you find new ways to save money, make money and have fun doing it!

 

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How to Invest in the Best Fire Extinguisher

  • June 14, 2021

 

While having a fire extinguisher is not a must, it would be best to invest in one. It is one of the essential safety items during a domestic fire outbreak which can occur at any time. There are many things you ought to have in mind when buying a fire extinguisher. If you are unsure how to pick the right one, this post can help you achieve that.

Did you know that there are various classes of fire extinguishers with varying applications? Class A extinguishers can help put out fire fueled by wood. Class B fire extinguishers are for flammable liquids, Class C is appropriate for electrical fires, and Class D extinguishers are for combustible metals. You can choose any of these classes or those that serve multiple purposes.

PropertyGuru Singapore highlights that there are various types of fire extinguishers. The first type is a powder fire extinguisher that you will find in many homes. When sprayed, it emits a chemical-based powder that helps put out the fire. The second one being a water fire extinguisher is less versatile than the powder extinguishers.

A gas fire extinguisher works by reducing the ability of fire to keep on burning. It does so by reducing the amount of oxygen that keeps the fire burning. Lastly, though not commonly used, is a foam extinguisher.

Before buying a domestic fire extinguisher, there are various things you have to consider. Foremost is the weight of the fire extinguisher. You should choose a lightweight one that anyone can use with ease. Another vital thing to consider is the price. Prices of fire extinguishers vary, therefore you should shop around and find one within your budget.

If you’re interested in this phenomenon, please take a look at the following infographic. It shows how you can correctly use a fire extinguisher. The infographic makes it easy to understand the specific steps of using one and other fire safety tips. Check it out below.

 


Infographic designed by PropertyGuru Singapore

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Entrepreneurs – Make Use Of Opportunity!

  • June 11, 2021

When opportunity comes knocking, it’s important to embrace whatever comes your way. As an entrepreneur, it can be hard to know exactly when and how this may come, and what form it might take. We often fear that taking one opportunity means neglecting all the rest, some that, in our minds, could be life-changing if we only waited a little longer.

However, this attitude is often one of the worst we can adopt, as it can rob you of the benefits that come from staying humble, working your way up, and making the most of what realistic tools you have in front of you.

So, no matter if you’re looking for a great place to source trucking jobs, you’re running your own firm, or you’re simply trying to find your unique selling point, we would warmly recommend that you, as an entrepreneur, should learn how to take on the opportunity, but first, how to identify it.

In this post, we hope to help you achieve exactly that. Without further ado, let’s get started:

Read Into The Opportunity, Top To Bottom

Reading into the opportunity presented to you, from top to bottom, can help you understand exactly what it is. This can help you avoid diving into an opportunity that might not be right for you, or being taken advantage of. From learning how many hours a week it will take, what pay you can expect, how you earn, how far to travel and what kind of learning you can achieve may help you make that decision. Opportunities are important to seize, but know what you’re seizing.

Set Up Alerts Where Necessary

It can be helpful to set up alerts where appropriate, to help you stay aware of exactly what opportunities are out there. Perhaps setting up alerts for job notifications on LinkedIn, Indeed and other services can help you see just what positions you may wish to take, or what professionals you may wish to contact. Industry news from websites you trust can also help you retain the inside scoop on your industry, which may help you stay ahead of the curve and remain a confident and more interested entrepreneur, someone able to digest the facts before most others.

Curate An Online Professional Presence

Opportunity isn’t always something you have to go out and hunt with diligence, but something that if appropriately cared for, you can fish out of the ether. This might involve ensuring that your online professional presence is there and accessible by anyone who wishes to see you.

Curating an online professional presence might mean opening a website, or a Twitter page, or a LinkedIn, or contributing to a blog, or running a freelancer page on a popular connective platform. This kind of online professional presence, carefully and duly crafted, can almost always help you develop something of an online presence you can be proud of and care for. In the long run, that can make a tremendous difference, and make bring opportunity your way.

With this advice, we hope you can continue to make use of opportunity in the best possible manner.

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A Guide To The Costs Of Buying Property In Malaysia

  • June 11, 2021

Many people buy properties in Malaysia as holiday homes, second homes, or somewhere to live where the cost of living is much lower than it is in the West. But figuring out how much you need to pay in transaction costs and so on is a constant challenge. It’s not always clear. 

It turns out that transaction costs in Malaysia are usually based on the percentage value of the property. What’s more, they lie on a sliding scale, meaning that the more you spend on a property, the smaller the various charges are as a percentage of the total (however, the absolute cost still rises in many cases). 

There are a variety of fees that people buying properties in the country need to pay. 

For instance, if you’re buying a sub-sale property or new development, you’ll need to pay a charge to prove that you’ve purchased the property. And you’ll also have to pay a lawyer to check over the various loan agreements that you have with the lender to make sure that you’re repaying the right amount. 

However, there are other fees that differ depending on whether you’re buying a new development or a sub-sale. For instance, on a sub-sale, you’ll have to put down a down payment of at least 10 percent. However, you may be able to withdraw this from your EPF if you are eligible for a new development. You’ll also have to pay valuation fees on a sub-sale for the lender’s collateral. 

Check out the following infographic which explains it all in more detail. 


By PropertyGuru Group

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Expenses That You Didn’t Know You Might Have To Pay Some Day

  • June 11, 2021

There are a lot of unexpected expenses in life, and they’re hard to predict. However, if you have some savings at any given time, you should be able to pay for at least part of what you need, when you need it. But, what are you saving for? It’s often difficult to save money if you’re constantly thinking that there is no reason for you to pay this because there is nothing it is needed for right now. Down below, we’re going to be looking at some of the things that you should be saving for, and they should help you get your head in the saving game. Keep reading down below to find out more.

Legal Representation

The first thing that you might need at any given point is legal representation. You never know when you are going to be in the position where you need to hire a lawyer. It might be the case that you sought out a personal injury attorney because you have been involved in an accident that you require compensation for. Or, it might be something else entirely, but you are going to need decent legal representation in order to have a chance at winning. If you don’t do this, then you are likely going to lose your case, whatever it is.

Nursing Home

The next thing that you could be saving for is the nursing home that you want to go to when you get older. Some people don’t want to go into a nursing home, and others do. If there is one that you like and you know this is where you would like to live, you might want to have some money for this. It’s important that you aren’t relying on everyone else to pay it for you, or have them selling your assets when the time comes. If this happens, when the money runs out you are going to end up in a state facility. As such, saving now is going to be in your best interests.

Emergency Repairs

Finally, you never know when something is going to break and need fixing. Emergency repairs can be expensive, especially if it is something like the boiler. This will need sorting out as soon as possible, but if you don’t have the money then you’re in a bit of a sticky situation. Of course, if you have these savings, then you’re going to be able to get your boiler fixed or replaced with minimal amounts of fuss. 

While it’s true that someday might never come, if this happens, then at least you’ve got a decent sum saved up

We hope that you have found this article helpful, and now see some of the expenses that you didn’t know you might have to pay some day. Of course, there is no guarantee that you are going to need to pay for these things, but that doesn't mean that you shouldn’t save the money for them anyway. It’s for reasons like these that savings are important. We wish you the very best of luck.

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Investing In Safety Can Save You Money

  • June 11, 2021

There’s no such thing as being too safe, no matter where you are, but car safety is even more important. It’s something that you can’t go overboard with, as it’s not just your safety that’s on the line. It’s the people in your car, along with the people that you’re sharing the road with. One wrong turn, or getting distracted for even a second or two can cause a serious injury for you and anyone else that’s been involved in the collision. Investing in your own safety will pay for itself in time, and you won’t have to live with the regrets of skipping over it should anything ever happen.

Modern car features

A lot of new cars often come with flashy features like a rearview camera or systems that are built to help you prevent crashes. Having those installed can be great for preventing an accident, but people have coped for years without them. If you’re driving an older model of car, the chances are it’s lacking those features, which could be dangerous if you feel like they could help you out on the road. It’s nice to have that extra insurance when you need to make a maneuver or check in on the blindspots that are always just out of reach without a camera.

Modern cars are also built to take crashes in a way that helps to protect the driver and passengers should a collision happen. From airbags to crumple zones, the newer the car, the more time that’s been spent on the safety features of your car. While it might not be likely that you’re going to end up in a car accident, you’ll be glad you had them if you ever did.

If you’ve been in an accident

Car crashes can be terrible, to say the least, and the people involved are often left with trauma from the event. It’s not easy to get back behind the wheel and to top it off, it could have an impact on your wallet too. Insurance companies will likely raise the price of your insurance once you’ve been in an accident, which can make life even more difficult after an accident! If you’re going to avoid this kind of consequence, you need to get into contact with some knowledgeable car accident lawyers who can take your case for you. The less you have to pay for insurance, and the less it increases as a result of the crash, the more the lawyer pays for themselves.

Getting back on the road after an accident can be a difficult hurdle to overcome, you shouldn’t need to worry about the financial consequences on top of that. Make sure you know how to handle yourself after an accident, and the right steps to move forward. You also have to consider how long it will take to recover from an accident, and that time that you’ve spent away from your job can put an even bigger hole in your finances.

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How to Avoid Asking Friends and Family for Money

  • June 11, 2021

Asking friends and family for money can be an awkward situation. It involves swallowing your pride and being asked why you need the money and how you got into your predicament. While it might be the easiest way out, sometimes getting an interest-free loan from loved ones isn’t worth the added stress.

 This means you are back to square one; you still need the money, and you need to figure out how to get it quickly. Check out the options below so you can avoid asking friends and family for money.

Don’t Buy It

There are valid reasons to obtain good debt. It can build your credit score, pay off high-interest credit cards or potentially make your business more profitable, good debt will save you money in the long term.

 However, if you are looking for money to purchase a luxury item or impulse buy, stop yourself and don’t buy it. Even if there is a fantastic sale, going into debt to buy something that doesn’t make you money is not sensible. It could leave you in a more challenging situation when an emergency arises, and you have already exhausted your access to quick cash.

Borrow It

There are plenty of valid reasons to borrow money. Everyone needs to get a helping hand at some point, whether to cover the shortfalls for bills that month or to buy new tires after an unexpected blowout.

Applying for quick loans can be done discreetly online at any time of day and from the comfort of your own home. When your car is broken down, or you're mopping up a flooded kitchen, you don't want to bother with expensive childcare so that you can go to the bank to fill out forms. Even if you have a lackluster credit score, you may be eligible if:

  • You are 19 years or older
  • You are a Canadian citizen and resident of British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, or Prince Edward Island
  • You have had the same employer for three months or more and took home $800 or more monthly
  • You are paid via direct deposit into a bank account that has been open for three months or more
  • You have a working mobile phone number, email, and proof of home address

 Earn It

Asking for additional hours or overtime at work might be possible, but it is unlikely to get you money right when you need it. Those with small children will have the extra expense and difficulty finding childcare, and people in rural areas may not have a plethora of jobs available. 

The internet has opened the possibilities to earn extra money from anywhere and at any time. Freelancing websites like Fiver or Upwork have literally millions of job postings for one-off requests or long-term positions. These range from writing blog articles like this one you are reading to translating documents or answering customer emails.

If you have a particular skill, whether it be crocheting or scrapbooking, there are likely people that are looking for lessons and willing to pay for a Zoom session. The critical aspect to earning money from an online application is realizing that everyone has a skill that is needed by someone else; it is just a matter of finding a way to connect.

We know that you don’t want to ask your friends and family for money. Finding alternative options is more conducive for saving face with your family and learning that you can solve financial problems on your own.

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Leading a Healthier Lifestyle on a Day to Day Basis

  • June 11, 2021

 

We all want to be healthy. When it comes down to it, leading a healthy lifestyle can significantly help us when it comes to happiness and overall well being. A healthy individual can generally engage with the activities they want to without being inhibited. This is liberating and enjoyable! Now, there are countless things you can do to lead a healthier lifestyle, but for now, let’s focus on just a few that can help you get off to the best start!

Understand Calories

When we talk about healthy diets, many of us automatically think of reducing our calorie intake. Unfortunately, many of us have developed unhealthy relationships with calories and deprive our bodies of the calories that we need in a bid to be “healthier”. This is a big misunderstanding. Sure, some individuals can cut calories to lose weight if they are overweight or obese. But this should only be done under the advice and supervision of a doctor who can recommend the exact number of calories you should be consuming and how long you should continue before returning to a higher calorie count on a daily basis. When it comes down to it, calories are a unit of measurement. They measure the energy that you’re putting into your body through food (which is essentially a fuel). Now, there are a recommended number of calories that every person should eat each day and this number can vary as a result of individual factors, including (but not limited to) your sex, age and activity levels. The guide below gives a rough idea of how many calories individuals of a healthy weight should consume on a daily basis:

  • Children aged 2 to 8 - 1000 to 1400 calories
  • Girls aged 9 to 13 - 1400 to 1600 calories
  • Boys aged 9 to 13 - 1600 to 2000 calories
  • Active women aged 14 to 30 - 2400 calories
  • Sedentary women aged 14 to 30 - 1800 to 2000 calories
  • Active men aged 14 to 30 - 2800 to 3200 calories
  • Sedentary men aged 14 to 30 - 2000 to 2600 calories
  • Active adults over 30 - 2000 to 3000 calories
  • Sedentary adults over 30 - 1600 to 2400 calories

Eat a Balanced Diet

Another mistake that people make is failing to eat a balanced diet within their recommended calorie count. Each meal or snack you have should help you to meet your body’s nutritional requirements. Too many fad diets encourage people to cut out whole food groups or multiple food groups to lose weight quickly. But you should be eating varied foods that provide a wide choice of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. This means you can eat all of your favourites. You just need to practice moderation. Whether that’s sandwiches, sauteed shrimp, sushi, curry or anything else.

Quit Bad Habits

Health isn’t entirely about diet. You also need to make sure that you’re not doing anything to actively harm your body. This sounds odd, but so many people do. Take smoking as an example. We’re all fully aware that smoking can lead to long term - and potentially fatal - health conditions, such as cancer. But still, so many people engage with it. If you have any bad habits along these lines, do your utmost to cut them out. There are all sorts of support out there, from quitting aids (in the case of smoking, things like nicotine patches and nicotine gum), support groups, helplines and more.

Remember Your Mental Health

Your mental health can have just as significant an impact on your wellbeing as your physical health. So, make sure that you’re monitoring your mental health too. Sure, not too long ago, there was a stigma surrounding mental health. But over recent years, scientific studies, medical advances and increased conversation around the subject in general have helped to reduce this stigma and ensure people with mental health conditions can reach out for support and help more easily. If you feel you are struggling with your mental health, reach out to a doctor. They’ll be able to diagnose any underlying conditions and guide you in the right direction. Whether that’s medicine, therapy or a combination of the two approaches. There are also mental health charities, support groups, helplines and more too!

As we noted before, there really are countless lifestyle changes you can make to improve your overall health and wellbeing. Those highlighted above are just a few options that could serve as starting blocks for you! Try implementing a few into your routine and you should see positive effects before you know it!

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