Welcome to another week of Monday Night Finance where we highlight recent personal finance articles.
With talk of coronavirus everywhere, a lot of people are focusing on trimming their expenses. I think we all have good intentions when it comes to spending less and saving more. However, even though we want to, we often fail to actually do it. In this article, Bob from The Frugal Fellow gives 11 great tips on how to actually slash your expenses.
Instead of thinking about your morning latte or going to the bar on the weekends, we should consider the bigger expenses. Why? Because these expenses are, well, bigger. They make up the biggest part of our budget – even if we don’t think about them as often. ~The Frugal Fellow
Bob’s number one tip is to reduce housing costs. For most Americans, housing represents their largest expense. Bob moved into a house with roommates and cut his housing costs in half. In addition to roommates, Bob lists several other strategies for reducing housing costs such as full-time house sitting or “house-hacking”. One of Bob’s other tips was greatly reducing his consumption of meat. Not only is this a great way to save money but it is also great for the planet. Meat production uses 30% of all of the water used in the United States and represents about 15% of all greenhouse gas emissions.
I have been “sheltering in place” for about 2 weeks now because of the novel coronavirus. At this point, a lot of my habits have changed. Also, I’m starting to get a little bored. If you, like me, are looking to change up your at-home routine, you should check out this article by Melanie of Partners in FIRE.
Not leaving the house is not leaving the house, whether because it’s too cold or because you’re under quarantine. So, here are some super fun things you can do while maintaining social distancing. They’re all cheap too! ~Melanie, Partners in Fire
One of the most original ideas in the article is having a “patio picnic”. While the beach and public parks may be closed, you could still have a picnic with your quarantine buddy. Melanie suggests packing a picnic, getting a blanket, and setting it up in your backyard or patio if you have one. Additional suggestions include having a board game night, trying out new recipes, or having a video game party.
You may remember our very first Monday Night Finance roundup featured Jen from Jendependenceday.com. Jen was working on achieving financial independence and early retirement by starting various side-hustles to provide passive income. When we first featured her blog, she was just starting and had various different avenues for achieving passive income. She recently updated her blog to say that she was shifting gears and deciding to focus more on her blog.
Every experience we have ever had with the internet has been easy and quick, and we love that. So that’s why, so many of us are able to be tricked into believing we can start an online business overnight, with no money. ~JenDependenceDay
When Jen started her journey, she was working on growing several different online businesses at once. She was running an online t-shirt shop and running a blog with advertisements and affiliate links. Most of her business strategies were based off of ideas from websites that promised that you could start an online business and quit your job with little to no work. However, Jen stated that most of these websites had big promises but that these strategies did not work. Now Jen has simplified her strategy, and is working on writing her blog and hoping to monetize it through affiliate marketing.