By: Kate Parham
We've reached round four in our new series about the best money-saving mobile apps. So far, we've covered Shopkick, an app that rewards you simply for going into your favorite stores; Key Ring Reward Cards, an app that allows you to keep all of your retail rewards cards on your Smartphone; and GasBuddy, an app that helps you find the cheapest gas prices wherever you are.
This week, we review RedLaser, an app that finds the lowest prices on items you want to buy.
Name of App: RedLaser
Works on: iPhone and Android devices
Tagline: Impossibly accurate barcode scanning
Why you should download it: Have you ever been out shopping and wondered if you're really getting the best deal? With RedLaser, you no longer have to guess.
Simply scan the barcode on any product with your SmartPhone and RedLaser will show you what the item is selling elsewhere - both online and in other retail stores. You can even use the app to locate retailers nearby that have your
Blog Posts by Quizzle.com
RedLaser ReviewRead More »from Money-Saving Apps: RedLaser
- Quizzle.com | Work + Money – Mon, Oct 10, 2011 4:22 PM EDT
Warning! Credit Score Drop AheadBy: Bill RiceRead More »from Warning! Close Your Credit Card Accounts with Care
Discussions about credit improvement often focus on the dos. However, in many cases, the don'ts are just as important.
For example, I was lurking on one of my favorite personal finance forums the other day and came across this question: "Paid off one of my credit cards the other day and my credit score dropped 15 points. What's the deal?" I had to jump in. "Did you close the card? How many credit cards do you have?" His reply: "Yes. Three, now two." I can almost guarantee that closing the credit card did a little doozy on his credit score.
Warning! Closing a paid off credit card may not be the best idea.
Check Your Credit Report
Before canceling those paid off, old or unused credit card accounts, review your credit report.
If you're actively paying down debt, you probably already have your credit report handy. If not, or you just want to get a handle on what old and unused credit card accounts you might have out there, grab your free credit report online.
- Quizzle.com | Work + Money – Fri, Oct 7, 2011 3:59 PM EDT
Consequences of Remodeling Your Home without a PermitBy: Kristie LoretteRead More »from Remodeling without a Permit: What to Do When It’s Time to Sell the Home
You've remodeled your home and turned it into your castle, your refuge and your dream home. When you did the remodeling, you used reputable contractors, but because they were friends, family members or other people you knew, no one pulled permits for the work. Now, you're trying to sell your home and you don't know what to do.
The best option? Confess.
It's a Matter of Public Record
If you are working with a real estate agent, he or she will ask you if there is anything to disclose to potential buyers. Remodeling or renovating your home without the proper permits is one of those "problems" that you are required by law to disclose. And if you don't fess up to the permit-less work, it may be discovered anyway by the title company or by a search of the public housing tax and deed records.
Public records contain the square footage of the home, including particulars like how many bathrooms and bedrooms the home has. If you add on another bathroom or bedroom without a
Save Money by Using Less GasRead More »from Save Money by Using Less Gas
By: Juliana Weiss-Roessler
We've all seen gas prices soar this year and while they're now on the down-slope, driving - especially in areas where commuting by car is a necessity - can mean a huge hit to our household budgets each month. Every time I fill up, I am shocked by the total that comes up even though I drive a small, fuel-efficient sedan, so I've been making an effort to lengthen the time between trips to the pump by using less gas.
Here are a few tips to lessen your gas usage - and the hit to your wallet:
Carpool. Find out if any of your co-workers live nearby and hitch a ride! Switch up who drives every other day or week. You'll cut the amount of gas you use to get to work in half. But work isn't the only place you can carpool to. Anytime you are going to a location with many friends, like a party or the bar, find out if your home is on the route of someone else attending, and be prepared to return the favor.
Combine trips. Instead of going to the supermarket on Friday
How to Manage Your Personal Finances in the New EconomyBy: Benjamin Gran
In much of the news coverage of the "Great Recession" over the past few years, many people have used the phrase, "When the economy recovers." It's a given for many of us that somehow, someday, our economy is going to go back to "normal" and people are going to start spending money again.
But what if the economy doesn't recover? According to a recent article in the New York Times, there is no "going back to normal." This is the new "normal." America's economy was propelled for almost 30 years by consumer spending, consumer credit, and home equity debt, and the driving forces that made this situation possible are no longer in play.
Consider these sobering facts from the article:
- American consumers are on track to buy 28 percent fewer cars in 2011 than in 2001.
- Sales of ovens and stoves are at their lowest level since 1992.
- Americans' "discretionary service spending" (i.e. restaurant meals, entertainment, education, insurance and other categories) is down 7
gasbuddy-screenshotsRead More »from Money-Saving Apps: GasBuddy
By: Kate Parham
We're up to round three in our new series about the best money-saving mobile apps. So far, we've covered Shopkick, an app that rewards you simply for going into your favorite stores, and Key Ring Reward Cards, an app that allows you to keep all of your retail rewards cards on your Smartphone. This week, we take a look at GasBuddy.
Name of App: GasBuddy
Works on: iPhone, Windows and Android devices
Tagline: Find Cheap Gas Prices
Why you should download it: Picture it: you're out running errands when your gas light turns on. You pull into the next station, filling up for $3.50/gallon. Once on the road again, you pass another gas station at $3.40/gallon. And another at $3.35/gallon. If only you had known there were other gas stations nearby that were so much cheaper! Thanks to GasBuddy, you'll never have to live this scenario again.
With GasBuddy, you can locate the cheapest gasoline nearest to you and even map a route to the cheapest station. The app
- Quizzle.com | Work + Money – Mon, Oct 3, 2011 12:31 PM EDT
How to Improve Your Credit Score - the Good, the Bad, the UglyBy: Bill Rice
The way I see it, credit scores are a lot like the classic Clint Eastwood (Blondie) line from the Spaghetti Western, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly:
"I'll sleep better knowing my worst enemy is by my side to protect me."A credit score can be your worst enemy or your best protector in a tough economy, but regardless, it will always be by your side. Learning how to manage your credit behavior to get your highest possible credit score is your best protection in hard financial times.
When was the last time you reviewed an up-to-date copy of your credit report? If it wasn't in the last 30 days, your worst financial enemy could be sleeping right by your side.
Get your free credit report now. Then read the rest to map out your plan for improvement.
Let's Start with the Good
Often times, good credit is more good luck than credit smarts, and luck can change on a dime. In fact, although many good credit folks may stop actively learning about smart credit habits, Read More »from 10 Ways to Improve Your Credit Score: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
- Quizzle.com | Work + Money – Thu, Sep 29, 2011 11:55 PM EDT
30-Year Mortgage or 15-Year Mortgage?By: Kristie LoretteRead More »from How to Decide between a 30-Year and 15-Year Mortgage
When buying a new home or refinancing an existing home, one of the many decisions that must be made is what kind of mortgage you're going to get. With that decision, is the option of term - or the length of your loan (ex: a 30-year loan has payments spread out over 30 years). For most borrowers, this means choosing between the ever-popular 30-year or 15-year fixed-rate mortgage.
Before you decide what mortgage is best for you, make sure you weigh the pros and cons of each to determine which option is right for your personal financial situation. Interest:
Is Paying Less Always the Best Option?
Generally, the 15-year interest rate is lower than the 30-year interest rate. At first glance, this may make the 15-year seem like a more attractive option. But keep in mind that in exchange for a lower mortgage rate, your monthly payment is likely to be quite a bit higher.
What many people don't know is that the majority of your mortgage payment for roughly the first half
Frugal Beauty Tips and SecretsBy: Juliana Weiss-RoesslerRead More »from 14 Frugal but Fabulous Beauty Tips
Just because you're trying to cut back doesn't mean you want to stop looking good! The salon and spa budget may be the first to go, but there are still many very inexpensive ways to look your best.
rink water and tea. Want to improve your skin? Forget expensive lotions and serums, just hydrate! It will help your skin look healthy and clear. Tea is another great option because of its antioxidants.
Exercise. When you get your blood pumping, it brings oxygen and nutrients to every organ. The end result is healthier skin and hair. You'll also notice you have a natural glow, so you may be able to use less blush. And of course, you'll look trimmer!
Give yourself a pedicure. It can be hard to give yourself a manicure at home, but taking care of your toes isn't hard. You can invest in nice equipment for under $20, and you'll save yourself $20 to $40 per month from then on. Want to give your feet a nice soak? Try adding a few bags of black tea in a bowl. The
Mortgage Refinance: The New RealityBy: Benjamin GranRead More »from New Realities of Mortgage Refinancing (Part 2)
In part one of this series, we discussed some of the new realities of mortgage refinancing in an interview with Quicken Loans Vice President and mortgage industry veteran, Stephen Luigi Piazza. The discussion continues here in part two, with more tips and trends that homeowners should know about if they want to refinance their mortgage today.
Consider "deleveraging" as part of your refinancing. Usually when customers refinance a mortgage, they choose to roll their closing costs into the total balance of the loan so that they don't have to pay the closing costs out of pocket; instead, that additional $2,000 or $3,000 (or more) just gets added to the amount of mortgage debt they owe. However, according to Piazza, 33 percent of Quicken Loans' refinance customers are bringing cash to closing, rather than adding their closing costs to the balance of the mortgage.
"We're seeing a lot of people who, even if they owe more on the house than the appraised value, are choosing