Blog Posts by POPSUGAR Smart Living

  • 5 Surprising Networking Locales

    Source: 5 Surprising Networking Locales

    Whether you believe in fate or not, sometimes saying a few words to the stranger beside you can put you in touch with just the right people you need to boost your career. The next time you find yourself in one of these five locations, work up the courage to spark a conversation with the person beside you.

    • Public transportation can be grimy and crowded, but perhaps the unsavory conditions will instigate a conversation with the person next to you.
    • Weddings bring people and extended family together. Your sister's, brother-in-law's, cousin's, or wife's cousin (from the other side of the family) might be the ideal "seventh" degree of separation that you needed to make friends with.
    • Restaurant bars are quieter, intimate, and certainly more civil than a Friday night out on the town. While you are waiting for a table, casually converse with the person beside you.
    • Long lines at lunch bring the downtown businessmen and women together.
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  • Best Credit Cards for Grocery Shopping

    Source: Best Credit Cards For Grocery Shopping

    If groceries are a common expense for you, why not take advantage of it by choosing the credit card that will give you optimal rewards for supermarket spending. After all, if travel is not your thing, it wouldn't make any sense for you to sign up for a credit card that's best for flights and hotels. Here are the cards that'll get you the best rewards if grocery shopping is one of your biggest expenditures:


    Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

    • Rewards: Get six percent cash back when spending in US stand-alone supermarkets. The first $6,000 spent in supermarkets will qualify for the six percent cash back. After that, you will receive one percent cash back. Get three percent cash back on gas at at stand-alone gas stations and select department stores. Get one percent cash back on all other purchases.
    • Sign-up bonus: Earn $150 reward dollars for spending $1,000 within three months.
    • Annual fee: $75.
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  • 10 Tips for Balancing Love and Money

    POPSUGAR Smart LivingSource: 10 Tips For Balancing Love and Money

    It's a sad but common tune: debt threatens to divide or break up an otherwise strong couple that hadn't set up any financial ground rules. Love and money don't always go hand in hand, which means it's crucial to consider the long term repercussions of sharing your life and bank account with another person. There's no magical credit card or anti-debt potion, but here are some tips for keeping the communication lines open, piggy bank full, and both of you crazy in love.

    • Discuss and Share Your Financial Goals : Before you get married or move in together you should tackle the tough questions so both of you know what to expect and aren't shocked years down the road. If things are really serious make sure to discuss your savings tactics and goals, debt, plans for providing for children and retirement plans. If you're not picking out dresses yet, discuss monthly and yearly expenses like housing, bills and lifestyle and entertainment
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  • 6 Ways to Find Out What Your Peers Are Making

    SavvySugarSource: 6 Ways to Find Out What Your Peers Are Making

    More and more companies are revealing how much each employee is getting paid, according to the Wall Street Journal. Advocates say this helps employees "better understand their individual contribution to the whole group." This wage transparency is most often practiced by start-ups, but if you're keen to know how much your peers are making even though your company doesn't reveal the numbers, here are a couple of alternatives:

    • Glassdoor: If your company is big enough, you may be able to find out the pay of employees through anonymous salary quotes at Glassdoor.com. What's great about this tool is it gives you specific information on what someone in your position is doing at your company, so the numbers aren't too generalized.
    • College career center: Even if many years have passed since your graduation, you can approach your college career center and ask the counselors if they have any statistics of what your fellow
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  • Make Your Own: Amazingly Easy Homemade Fabric Softener

    Source: Make Your Own: Amazingly Easy Homemade Fabric Softener

    Made from all-natural ingredients, this eco-friendly fabric softener helps fluff and freshen your clothes without artificial fragrances or ingredients. Vinegar is a natural softening agent, making it the perfect base for this homemade DIY. The addition of an essential oil, such as lavender, orange, lemon, or mint, which are antibacterial, keeps your clothes wonderfully clean and smelling fantastic. And, what's even better, this laundry booster only costs a few dollars to make.

    What You'll Need:

    • Large jar or container with lid
    • 16 ounces distilled white vinegar
    • Essential oil
    • Fresh herbs

    Directions:

    • Simply measure and add four cups of vinegar to a jar and 10 to 12 drops of your favorite essential oil. Simply shake and add 1/4 cup to your washing machine's fabric softener dispenser per load of laundry. For an extra boost of scent, add a sprig of fresh rosemary, lavender, or mint.
    • To make in bulk,
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  • Ultimate Guide to Getting Rid of Stuff You Don't Need

    Source: Ultimate Guide to Getting Rid of Stuff You Don't Need

    Starting the New Year means clearing out the old. It's a good idea to get items you don't use out of the way because they will fill up valuable space in your home. Get ready to sell your stuff with these tips:

    • Electronics. If you're thinking about selling your electronics, consider Gazelle.com, buymytronics.com, and nextworth.com. These sites are great because they'll quote you a price for the item you wish to sell. You can always consider selling it back to the original retailer itself if you're wary about third-party sellers. For instance, Apple has a great recycling program.
    • Receipts and documents. Nip your pack rat tendencies in the bud and start sorting out documents to trash or stash. Throw away receipts for items that you aren't planning on returning, and ones that you won't need to use come tax time. If you're wary of throwing away receipts, you can make a digital copy of them with a basic scanner, a
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  • Unexpected Expenses to Keep in Mind (and Avoid) in 2013

    SavvySugarSource: Unexpected Expenses to Keep in Mind (and Avoid) in 2013

    Even after you've set your budget for the New Year, chances are you might overlook certain expenses: you know, the busted transmissions and extra fees that creep up, and before you realize it, you're out hundreds of dollars. While some experts say you should have nine months to a year of income saved for emergencies, we know that's not always possible. But you can still prepare by putting aside money each month for these incidents. Soon you'll end up with a flexible spending plan that will withstand even these unexpected expenses.

    • Gifts: If you're someone with a large extended family or big group of friends, it can feel like it's someone's birthday every other week. Curb costs by suggesting that everyone pitch in for one nice present.
    • Electronic repairs: A hard drive crashing or a phone screen cracking is never fun. But the way we rely on our electronics, we don't hesitate to shell out whatever it takes to get
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  • 9 Must-Have Household Items Every Savvy Woman Needs

    SavvySugarSource: 9 Must-Have Household Items Every Savvy Woman Needs

    We all love saving money, making these budget-friendly items must haves around the house. You might be surprised with the ways you can use these basic things to save you in a pinch while keeping a few dollars in your pocket at the same time. Plus, you probably already have a few of these savvy items already in your home. Click through for our favorite tools and more that will help you save time and money around your house.

    • Needle and Thread: Not only awesome for attaching buttons and mending clothes, a needle and thread comes in handy for fun DIYs and crafts. Having an assortment of needles and thread at your house is much cheaper than paying a tailor for quick hem touch-ups and tightening loose buttons.
    • Baking Soda: A box of baking soda only costs a few dollars and does much more than help your baked goods taste good and freshen your fridge. There are tons of money-saving ways to use baking soda. Instead of
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  • 10 Frugal Ways to Live Chemical-Free

    Source: 10 Frugal Ways to Live Chemical-Free

    Living chemical-free seems like a luxury - after all, those organic products tend to be pricier. But is it worth the cost? Beth Greer, an environmental health consultant and the author of Super Natural Home, warns that the chemicals can "act as endocrine disruptors - substances that interfere with our natural hormones." This may lead to the worsening of conditions like allergies and asthma and other symptoms like fatigue, nausea, and headaches. Prolonged exposure may even lead to more devastating health problems.

    For those who are resolving to start living a more chemical-free life this year, Greer has some budget-friendly tips on how to make the change:

    • Switch it up. "Start with the foods and products you use most often and switch out just one in each category. For example, if you drink milk, switch to organic milk (without pesticides and growth hormones); switch just one lipstick to a natural one; choose a natural deodorant."
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  • Savvy Resolutions You Should Make This Year

    SavvySugarSource: Savvy Resolutions You Should Make This Year

    The best way to stick to New Year's resolutions (or any type of resolution, for that matter) is to keep it simple. You may wonder how you can streamline such a complex process - there are so many possible resolutions to commit to! The answer is easy: just pick one resolution. Read on to see our suggestions and pick your favorite.

    • Drop Your Daily Deal Habit: This year, resolve to drop your daily deal habit. Buying coupons can be extremely addictive, because sometimes the deals are just too tempting. But oftentimes, you'll end up doing something that you never planned on doing in the first place and trying restaurants that you had no intention of trying to begin with. The problem with buying deal after deal is that you might forget about them if you're not carefully keeping track of them, and you may end up losing money when the coupon expires. Do yourself and your budget (not to mention your inbox!) a favor this year, and
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