What to Consider Before Moving to a New City

Moving is a big decision, and it’s important to ensure that the area you choose fulfills all of your personal goals and desires. From location to public transit, there are many important factors that you should take into account during your search for a new place to call home. Be sure to consider the following key aspects before you settle into your new city.

Convenience

When searching for a home in a different city, you should think about how easily you will be able to get around the area. Be sure to look into public transit options and determine how long your commute to work will be after you move. Whether you decide to take the train to work or drive, factoring your commute into your home-buying decision is worthwhile.

Recreation

Once you’re done with the workday and ready to do something fun, you’ll want to be in the know about any recreational activities that are available in your area. When you search for Yorkville condos for sale, you have the opportunity to explore many different possibilities for leisure. Whether you’re in the mood for admiring fine art or indulging in five-star dining, make sure that your new city offers plenty of options for enjoyment.

Education

If you have children, you’ll want to send them to schools that provide them with a good education. Make sure that you look into the reputation of the schools in your area before buying a new home. Even if you don’t have kids to send off to class, the quality of the schools in your area can have an impact on the future value of your home. Schools with a positive reputation can increase your home’s overall value and make it easier to sell later on.

Personal Goals

No matter what city you’re moving to, you won’t feel satisfied in the new area if it doesn’t align with your personal goals. Be sure to evaluate what you wish to get out of your move and understand what you want to achieve early on. From personal to professional goals, there are many elements that are worth considering before moving in. To be happy with your choice, make sure that it’s the right one.

Moving to a new city can be an exciting and rewarding experience if you take the time to think through your decision. These tips can help propel you towards success and happiness in your new area.

Think About Your Taxes While Working Your Side Gig

To make some extra money to put back into your savings account, take a nice vacation, or just meet your financial obligations, you may take up a side gig. From giving people rides or becoming a freelance graphic designer to delivering groceries, it’s easier than ever to make extra money on the side. While you’re enjoying the freedom and income that comes with a side gig, be sure you don’t forget about the IRS. You can be sure they won’t forget about you.

Keep Close Track of Your Earnings

Create a spreadsheet that you use to keep track of all the money you earn from your side gig. Depending on the gig you have, there could be an app that makes tracking your earnings easier. Either way, it’s your responsibility to note every penny you earn. The IRS is most certainly doing this on their end, and you want to ensure both your tallies add up to the same amount. At the end of the year, note how much you’ve earned so you know what to put on your 1099 tax form.

Familiarize Yourself With Your Expenses

Besides how much you earn, you should also keep track of what you spend during your side hustle. For example, if you use a ridesharing app, note how many extra miles you put on your car, the depreciation your car experiences, and even how much you spend on things like gum or bottled water for your passengers. There could be tax deductions you can take advantage of that lower your tax bill. To help with this, sit down with a professional from the Tax Group Center team. That way, you know beyond a shadow of a doubt what you can claim and what you can’t.

Know How Extra Earnings Impact Your Personal Taxes

While you’re speaking with a representative of the Tax Group Center, be sure to ask how your side gig earnings could impact your personal taxes. For instance, there could be a tax credit you no longer qualify for as a result of your supplemental income. If you’ve picked up a side gig to help put your kids through college, your efforts could inadvertently backfire in terms of eligibility for financial aid. Figure out how to balance things so that you reap the most financial reward without wasting your efforts.

Pay Quarterly Taxes

If you’ve never worked for yourself before, then you likely aren’t used to paying quarterly estimated taxes. What that means is you estimate how much you’ll owe in taxes in a single year and break that total down into four quarterly payments. Making estimated payments to the IRS allows you to sidestep penalties and fees for failing to make them in the first place. If you can, pay more than you think you need to. If you overestimate, you’ll get a refund, much like you do when a regular employer handles your taxes. If you underestimate, you’ll owe money when tax season rolls around, and you’ll have to pay additional penalties.

Open a Side Gig Account

It’s best to keep your regular income separate from your supplemental income. Doing so makes it easier to keep track of how much you make from your side gig, and it also makes it easier to take care of quarterly estimated payments. Specifically, once you note how much you earn, figure out a percentage to put into a savings account for your quarterly taxes. The rest of the money you can deposit into your regular checking account to spend or save as you see fit. Simply dumping your extra income into your regular checking account can make for a messy soup.

It can be exhilarating to see how much money you can earn from a side gig. Just make sure you have a tax plan for your earnings; otherwise, your exhilaration can curdle to frustration.

Why Hiring a Divorce Attorney Is Important When You Have Kids

Going through a divorce is a sensitive matter that should be approached with caution. It marks the end of a commitment that most thought would last a lifetime. To many, it is the last option after all other options trying to salvage their union fails, and it might be hard to let go. A divorce where kids are involved in complicates matters. Before a divorce is granted, the children’s welfare is always addressed first. Contentious issues mostly surround the custody and support the children should get. When you are in such a situation, you need to hire a competent divorce lawyer, and these are the reasons why:

1)    Expert Advice

You might have your divorce figured out in an agreement or on your own, but that might not be the best decision. Emotions or your current situation might also contribute to your choices, and this might cloud your judgment. Selfish acts leave your children at a loss, and they end up suffering. A divorce attorney in New Jersey gives you an expert’s advice, and this helps you make rational decisions. They also advise how to proceed with the divorce and ensure your kids come out unscathed from the situation.

2)    Better Terms

Children do not have to suffer just because their parents are no longer together. Having a divorce lawyer negotiate terms on matters about the children is essential. Parties involved carving into their partner’s demands to avoid conflicts or out of fear. Others use their financial capabilities as a means to oppress the other party, and they end up taking only what is floated as child support. A divorce lawyer will help you get the very best for your children. They help you determine what would be best for the children and even help to ensure it is enforced as some bail after an agreement is reached amicably.

3)    Fear of Violence

Divorces are not always smooth and on mutual understanding. Some people might find it hard to let go of their spouses, while others do not want to be separated from their children. Others are violent, and if the other party does as much as mention it, they might end up with a beating. Many people have reported having stayed married despite the need for divorce for fear of their spouses taking it out on their children. A divorce lawyer can be your representative when the proceedings take place and during all negotiations. This helps reduce hostility and reduces the chances of violent confrontations.

4)    Change in Circumstances

You might also need a divorce lawyer if the circumstances surrounding you and your spouse change. Some people change their statements and minds once they get to the judge and this complicates things. Others alter the content agreed upon before signing. Additionally, marital, health, and financial status of the parties involved might change. This might force the divorce proceedings to take a different direction. A divorce lawyer might come in handy as they ensure that the children do not bear the brunt due to these changes.

Savvy Savings – 4 Essential Tips to Help Families Save in Tight Times

Unfortunately, we’ve probably all had that horrible moment when we’ve looked at our finances and discovered that what’s coming in doesn’t cover what’s going out. That sinking feeling isn’t nice, but if we turn it into a stepping stone for a more stable game plan, it doesn’t have to lead to a freakout. Financial stability is something we all strive for and while it’s not as easily achievable for some than it is for others, it’s entirely possible to create a sound future on almost any income as long as you’re smart and disciplined with your money.

No more debt.

It’s tempting to reach for your credit card when you want or need something you can’t afford. This may provide a quick fix but your little plastic friend can send you into a spiral of debt if you’re not careful. Aim to live on as little borrowed money as possible and start your new journey towards financial security by consolidating and paying off any outstanding debts. Taking out one of the readily available small loans present in today’s market can help.

Set a budget.

Yes, the term budget is often considered a dirty word but you’re going to need one if you want to start building a nest egg for your family. Step one is working out what currently comes and goes from your household. Now that you understand your income, deduct all necessary fixed expenses and allocate the leftover funds until you’ve covered everything else you need. Save half of what’s left and use the remainder as flexible or “fun” money. This helps you feel less restricted and makes it easier to stick to your budget.

Be prepared.

Now that you’ve worked out how much you have to spend on groceries this pay cycle, work out a meal plan. Not only will this reduce spoilage, but it will also make cooking dinner on a work night far easier. Bonus points here if you get the whole family involved so everyone has a say and ensures everyone has something they wanted to eat at least once a week.

Cut them off.

Back when you were making your budget, you probably identified some unnecessary expenses. While luxuries such as premium television subscriptions, eating out and shopping just for the sake of it might be fun, they can place significant stress on your finances. If you can’t fit these into your play money allocation, it might time for them to go. You can revisit once your debt is paid off and there’s some savings in the bank, but for now, you’re better off without them. Try to find cheaper or free alternatives if you want to keep these extras as part of your lifestyle but if you simply can’t make it work, remember that no-one can do everything and that going without now will lead to a brighter future.

Saving is tough and very few people find themselves in a position where it’s an easy thing to do. Make sure you focus on why you’re making changes to your lifestyle and what you’re going to achieve rather than what you’re missing out on and don’t worry if you fall off the wagon. Jump back on, make the most of what you have and check in regularly to make sure everything is going to plan. One day you’ll be able to look back and thank your present self for doing it and that’s the best reward of all.

 

Grocery Bill Too Expensive? Try these Ways to Save

Did you know that around 60 percent of Americans don’t even have $1,000 to spare in an emergency?

For many people, it’s not because they’re not earning enough money. Instead, it’s that they’re spending far too much on your expenses.

Most Americans spend most of their monthly salary on three things. These include housing, transportation, and of course, food.

If you want to know how you can save money on your grocery bill, you’ve come to the right place. Check out our 11 savvy ways to save money on shopping for food below!

1. Start a Shopping Budget

Do you have a budget for your grocery shopping expenses?

Lots of people don’t have a budget at all. In fact, only 40 percent of Americans say they have a budget. While even fewer stick to it!

And yet, this is perhaps the most simple and effective way to save on grocery shopping. All you’ve got to do is to calculate how much you want to spend on groceries and track your spending.

Before you go grocery shopping, you’ve got to know how much you’ve got to spend. Then, you need to count up the expenses as you make your way through the store.

If you think that’s impossible to cut down your expenses, you just need some belief.

Take inspiration from other people. One savvy-shopper successfully reduced her grocery bill to just $4 per day.

You don’t have to make any drastic reductions to make significant savings on groceries. Just create a budget now!

2. Cook at Home

Do you consider going out for dinner to be an occasional treat or a regular necessity?

Up to 90 percent of Americans don’t like to cook.

This is costing people a fortune. The average American household spends around $3,000 per year on dining out.

That’s why you can make a tonne of savings by cooking at home more often. You may enjoy it more if you learn about new ingredients and stop buying expensive convenience meals.

It’s not always easy getting out of dining out if you’re with friends. But, there are ways of saving money when your friends want to go out for food. Check out this post learn more!

3. Meal Planning

Around 53 percent of meals are planned for only one hour in advance. This kind of spontaneous meal preparation can cause you to spend more on groceries than you require.

If you want to save on groceries, you need to consider how you can plan your meals before you head to the grocery store.

Therefore, you purchase only the items which you need to prepare the meals for the week. Meal planning can prevent you from throwing away food which has gone bad before you had the chance to use it up.

Meal planning is also associated with better health. People who plan meals have on average greater food variety, diet quality, and body weight status.

4. Grow Your Own Fruit & Veggies

Around 85 percent of Americans don’t eat enough fruit and vegetables.

While the excuse is often that they’re too expensive, this isn’t actually the case. And yet, you don’t have to buy vegetables and fruit yourself if you want to save money.

You can simply grow your own at home. You just to need to work out which vegetables and fruits are expensive to buy but cheap to grow.

There are encouraging signs that Americans are growing their own produce. More than one-third of US households grow their own fruit and vegetables now.

5. Keep Your Own Life Stock

If you’ve got a large yard, you can probably find enough space to host a few animals for livestock.

You could keep a few rabbits to eat as meat. You could even go hunting for your food like your ancestors. Check out this Ballistic Advantage to learn more.

If that’s a little too much for you to handle. Then, you can keep animals for other reasons.

You could also create a home for some chickens to roam around to provide you with eggs.

While a mere 1 percent of American households currently have chickens in their back yard, up to 4 percent plan to set one up in the next few years.

This could help you make substantial savings. You won’t have to pay for eggs for your breakfast ever again.

6. Buy Seasonal Fruit and Vegetables

You’ve probably found yourself in a grocery store in the US looking at grapes from Chile, berries from Mexico and dragon fruit from Vietnam.

You’ll notice that many of these imported fruits and vegetables are actually much more expensive than the locally grown ingredients which fill the shelves.

By buying seasonal fruit and vegetables you can make substantial savings to your grocery bill each week.

7. Go Vegetarian or Vegan

You save even more money if you drop meat and/or animal products altogether.

Many people are already realizing the benefits of a plant-based diet. There has been a growth of up to 600 percent in veganism in just a few years.

We always only hear about the health benefits, the environmental effects and moral arguments for avoiding meat. But, it’s important to remember the financial case as well.

According to studies, you can save up to $750 per year by switching to a vegetarian diet. This could be even more with a vegan diet since you’re cutting out expensive cheese products.

Is giving up on your meat eating altogether is too much for you to stomach? You could also try switching to Meatless Mondays to save money instead.

8. Take Advantage of Coupons

We all enjoy a bargain!

Around two-thirds of Americans say that they have made a purchase with a coupon which they may not have otherwise done.

If you’re not already making the most of the opportunity to make savings with coupons, you need to change this quickly.

You may imagine old grannies spending hours cutting out coupons from newspapers and magazines to save 10 cents here and there.

But, actually, you save $20 or more per week just by keeping track of coupons on your food bill.

You can also tap into the advantages of grocery store loyalty schemes to continue to make savings on your expenses.

9. Dumpster Diving

Some people manage to spend just by $5.50 over two-years because they exclusively recover food from dumpsters.

You may think that picking up a piece of electronic equipment or some useful furniture is a great find. But, is dumpster diving for groceries too much?

You can also get in touch with grocery stores and other small food stores for leftovers. For example, you may be able to secure a supply of bread from the bakery on your block.

10. Be Ahead of the Game

Grocery stores are always coming up with incentives for you to spend more. But, remember, your challenge is to stick to your budget whatever they throw your way.

Have you ever heard the phrase “eye level is buying level?” The store knows that if they place the most expensive item at eye level, you’re most likely to notice and buy it.

If you came into the store to purchase bread, you probably know the feeling of needing to walk through the whole grocery store to get what you want. Stick to your guns and don’t change to tact.

You can even go one further. Learn when the grocery store slashes prices and brings out discount offers on items you want. This way you can be ahead of other shoppers to the best buys.

11. Ignore Expiration Dates

Over 90 percent of Americans could be throwing away perfectly edible food because they think it’s not safe to eat.

The expiration dates on food are not anything to do with food safety standards. It’s mostly for the store to indicate optimal freshness.

However, that’s not the same as edible. These labels are determined by the store themselves rather than any regulatory body.

Studies have also shown that US households are throwing away an average of up to $455 worth of groceries needlessly in the garbage.

Instead of worrying about what the label says, rely on your instincts. Does it smell and look ok to eat? It probably is!

How to Save Money on Your Grocery Bill?

Many Americans are spending too much of their hard earned cash on groceries.

Of course, it’s important to stay healthy and eat well. However, you don’t need to spend a fortune to achieve this either.

Follow our tips for saving money on your grocery bill to keep more cash in your pocket at the end of each month.

Do you want to learn more about how to save money? Check out this blog post on some simple ways to make huge savings!

When Money Is Tight: 4 Tips for Buying Health Insurance on a Shoestring Budget

You don’t need me to tell you that health insurance is a necessity in the modern age. However, as you may have heard from people you know, the media in general, and your own experiences, health insurance can be extremely expensive, which means you need to find the balance between finding a quality plan and not breaking the bank.

This is why it’s so important to make sure you’re researching what’s out there, and which plan is the best for you. Nevertheless, if you’re shopping on a shoestring budget, here are four tips to remember to ensure you’re getting the best deal.

#1 – Don’t Get Health Insurance

The best way to save money on your health insurance is to not spend it at all. Of course, I’m not saying you shouldn’t protect yourself with a policy, but you should take the time to check to see whether you’re entitled to some kind of benefit or protection that means you don’t have to pay.

For example, depending on the state and area you live in, you may be entitled to claim a benefit known as a Medicard, which means you’re eligible for free healthcare. That’s not to say you’ll get it, but it’s definitely something worth checking out.

#2 – Only Get What You Need

Another important thing to make sure is that you’re checking what you actually need from your healthcare plan, and then ensure you’re only paying for this service. There are plenty of comprehensive healthcare plans out there designed to help cover all aspects that anybody may ever find themselves in, but that doesn’t mean that everybody needs this.

When choosing the healthcare plan that’s right for you, ensure you’re reading through all the terms and conditions and only selecting plans that have cover for everything you need in your life. Nothing more, nothing less.

#3 – Shop Around and Research

It’s all well and good thinking you need health insurance so you need to go out and buy the first plan you come across, but the chances are this isn’t the right plan for you. There are so many companies, providers, and different approaches out there for you to take, so make sure you’re taking the time to research.

There’s no harm in shopping around and finding the best price and the best service. Read reviews, ask your friends and colleagues, or ask a professional service who the best health insurance Ontario provider is in order to choose who’s best for you.

#4 – Visit the Government Website

In the US, the healthcare website is as simple as ‘healthcare.gov’, and it’s important you head over there and fill out an application. If you do this during the enrollment period, or there’s a life-changing event taking place, such as having a baby or getting married, this website will help detail everything you need to know. The more you know, the better the decisions you can make.

Summary

As you can see, there are plenty of things you need to think about when it comes to buying affordable health insurance plans for yourself and your loved ones. Be smart and organised and you can be sure you’ll be having the best experience.

Safe Driving Habits You Should Adopt As Soon As Possible

Contrary to popular belief, learning continues after you get the driver’s license. There are many that will tell you that you need to be a natural in order to be a good driver. This is completely incorrect. Driving requires skills that you hone in time and you can keep getting better and better.

A big part of driving is being safe on the road. This means so many different things, much more than what many believe. Obviously, you do not want to drive while intoxicated or under the influence. In this case you would surely have to contact a DWI attorney Jonesboro soon. Also, it is normal to respect the law. However, safe driving is much more than that. Remember the following safe habits that the really experienced drivers always respect.

Know Your Car

Basic vehicle knowledge is always needed when you drive. You do not need to know as much as a mechanic but you do want to learn all that you can about the car that you actually drive. Whenever possible, it is a good idea to learn as much as you can about vehicle styles, performance and transmissions. The more you know about cars, the easier it is to avoid accidents as you know what others are capable of.

Always Have A Positive Attitude

Few people talk about this but experienced drivers will tell you that everything is a lot better when you have an upbeat, positive attitude. Good drivers understand when it is a really bad idea to drive. For instance, if you just got some really bad news and you are affected by them, it is generally better to leave the car at home and take a taxi if you absolutely need to go somewhere.

Also, whenever you feel that you are really mad as you drive through traffic, it is better to stop. If you are anxious, stressed or angry, there is a much higher possibility that you will be involved in an accident or an altercation.

Practice Defensive Driving

So many articles are written about defensive driving and everyone tells you that this is something you have to do. The problem is that few people actually know what this means. Basically, defensive driving is what helps you to avoid accidents. Everything relies on:

  • Observation – You want to learn how to be aware of everything that happens around you.
  • Identifying Dangers.
  • Avoiding Accidents.

You Have To Be Patient

Patience is something that is mandatory as you drive, especially when traffic is really hard to navigate. Basically, if you see someone moving slowly and this makes you angry, you want to learn how to control yourself and be patient. Losing your cool, especially when driving at high speeds, can lead to accidents in the blink of a second. Also, if you are angry, it is much harder to avoid accidents. Patience is something that has to be practiced and you simply cannot consider yourself a good, experienced driver if you are not patient behind the wheel.

How to Save for an Upcoming Vacation

During the colder months of the year, it’s hard to avoid dreaming of a sunny escape. And while our imaginations can drum up the most extravagant and gorgeous vacations, the realities of life mean that our wallets often can’t keep up. With everyday expenses and the efforts of saving for an emergency fund, it can be difficult to think that a real vacation could be yours. After all, living expenses are high and it always seems like there’s another cost that needs to be covered.

And while we do our best to save and spend money wisely, accidental or sudden costs can eat up a good portion of our budget. You might even find yourself in a difficult position where you need to find extra funds to tide you over before your next paycheque arrives.

The good news is that there are online payday loan lenders that can help you when you need a hand covering costs. Just follow this link to learn more at GoDay about how an online short-term loan from a reliable payday loans direct lender can solve your cash flow problems. When unexpected costs stretch your money out too thin, payday lenders can help you out.

Use Technology

There has been a recent boom in financial technology (fintech) and the selection of new apps and software available to consumers is impressive. To help you budget and save, you can use a budgeting app that automatically tracks and categorizes your spending for you.

With the help of one of these apps, you can set saving goals for yourself and track your progress. Say you want to put aside $300 every month for six months to pay for an upcoming vacation. You can set this goal and see how your money gets distributed to stay on track with your saving plan.

The Side Hustle

Do you have a skill that you can sell on the side of your regular job? Do you have the time in your schedule to pick up a seasonal or part-time job? You can save for a vacation by getting creative with how you earn money outside of your regular income stream.

This can also help with visualizing how your money gets divided. You know that the money you earn from selling your hand-made bookshelves (if you possess carpentry skills) is going right towards your vacation fund. It’s easier to conceptualize your goal and keep track of the progress you’re making. If you’re a confident driver, own your own vehicle, and have the time to spare, you can always make a little extra cash driving Uber of Lyft as a way to earn extra.

Trim Your Food Budget

We spend a lot of money on food per month, with the average Canadian household spending about $214 per person a month on food. Free up room in your budget by making smart food purchasing decisions like buying in bulk, joining a food co-op, buying more fresh produce, and ordering less takeout.

You can take out items like treats and cut back on your alcohol income and you’ll be surprised to see how much extra money you have in your wallet. Small changes really make a difference, especially for tight budgets. It’s possible to go on a vacation on any budget, you just need to plan and save accordingly.