Dollars & Sense Blog

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12 Holiday Shopping Tips for Teens

Sending a teen to do their own holiday shopping? Send them this guide from Cool Cat Teacher Vicki Davis first!


Cyber Monday – How To Create A Money-Saving Strategy

Don’t start your Cyber Monday plan without reading these tips!


How To Plan For Black Friday

Is your family ready for Black Friday? Here’s a quick guide to getting the most out of retail’s annual romp for your holiday shopping list.


Planning Your Family’s Budget-Friendly Thanksgiving

Though “excess” may seem to be the theme, Thanksgiving doesn’t have to send your budget overboard. Check out these tips for a frugal feast from Erin Lowry of Broke Millennial.


Preparing Your Students For Holiday Spending

Teachers and parents, get teens ready for the holiday season with the help of these apps.


Putting The Holidays Into Financial Perspective For Teens

This year, help your teens understand how the holidays factor into the family finances with these tips from clinical psychologist, Jennifer Powell-Lunder.


3 Surprising Ways To Make A Holiday Budget

Ready for holiday spending? Try one of these strategies to keep it frugal and festive!


21 Things That Will Unexpectedly Completely Destroy Your Budget – Part Two

Last week, we listed ten of the worst things that could happen to your budget – but there are so many more. In honor of Halloween, here are 11 more unexpected financial disasters. Click here for advice on starting an emergency fund. 11. Discount vacations photo by aliciaabruce via Flickr A great deal on a hotel in paradise may seem like a win, but when you land in wonderland and realize there’s a $120 shuttle ride to get there, a no-outside-food policy, a very expensive rental program and the two egg breakfast costs $35 before tip, maxing feels less relaxing. 12. Pets (home destroyers) photo by lara604 via Flickr Like my couch? 13. Children (home destroyers you can’t get rid of) photo by iansoper via Flickr Like my living room? 14. Your appliances photo by phlyingpenguin via Flickr You know what appliances are made to do? Well, first they work


Reasons You Don’t Stick To Your Budget And How To Fix It

By Crystal Rapinkchuk, contributor Whether you’re a student, a parent, a teacher or none of the above, budgeting can be downright tough — even for the most math-savvy among us. No matter how foolproof the plan, something always comes up and we inevitably overspend. If you’ve ever found yourself “in the red” at the end of the week, month or year, have a look below at some of the reasons you might be having problems sticking to your budget, and troubleshooting tips on how to fix them. You’re spending more than you make. This may seem like the most obvious problem. We’ve all heard the phrase “live within your means,” but sometimes, that’s easier said than done. A successful budget is one that is not only less than what you make but also includes a set amount to hold onto for savings and emergencies. Your budget is outdated. The budget…


7 Frugal Habits To Start Today

By Kristl Story, contributor 1. Follow this mantra: “Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.” This slogan is from The Great Depression, but its frugal wisdom is timeless. 2. Shop smarter. Always take the time to compare prices. 3. Stop making impulse purchases. Instant gratification is an expensive habit. Give yourself a mandatory one-day waiting period after you see something you want at the store. Chances are, the impulse will pass. 4. Refuse to pay full price. Consider this a challenge with each and every purchase. Look for coupons, try thrift stores or shop with discounted gift cards. If there’s a will, there’s a cheaper way. 5. Get serious about grocery savings. The average family spends $800 – $1,000 per month on food, so there’s plenty of room for improvement. Try switching to store brands to instantly save about 25%. 6. Eat in, not out….