Life in Mascara: SPRING FINANCIAL CLEANING

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

SPRING FINANCIAL CLEANING


Our House to Home project is still in full swing. Husband is currently tackling our bedroom and as part of that I had to really deep clean the closet. While I pulled out size 3 jeans (why?) and 5 inch stiletto heals (again why?) all I kept thinking was how oddly satisfying this spring cleaning felt. And yes slightly horrifying at some of my financial fashion choices but that is an ENTIRELY different post. Let's take a look how we can do some deep Spring Financial Cleaning:

1. Look over phone bill usage. As per my blogging job, I am connected to my phone where ever I go. Husband loves Google. A year ago we switched phone providers and upped our data plan a few months after that to avoid going over. We kept it that way and led happy camper lives. Earlier this year we revisited said data plan and looked over our usage. We really didn't need that much data. Husband has the opportunity to be linked onto WiFi all day thus eliminating data charges all together (for the most part of course) and I am literally attached to the internet at my fingertips for both jobs. We down graded and in turn added to our savings a month. I bet if you looked into your plan you could save a pretty penny as well. Also don't be afraid to switch providers once your contract is up. Phone companies are constantly battling each other to draw more customers in and you can find a plan that is right for you and your current financial needs.

2. Look at your cable package. I didn't grow up having cable. It was something I never experienced until I started going over to friends' houses in middle school. What is this magical box with the many shows living in it? When I got to college and lived in the dorms they actually provided basic cable. I didn't leave my room for weeks! Once I lived on my own I had cable installed immediately. I was hooked! As my life has changed I no longer watch live t.v. Neither does husband unless Game of Thrones is on. The kids only watch Netflix. Yet we still had a cable package. At the beginning of the year we had our cable lowered to the basic package and increased our internet speed (it is wicked fast now!). The faster internet allows us to stream Netflix on more than one t.v. at a time without buffering and allows me to upload my YouTube videos quicker. We also don't have any premium channels. Instead we only add them when Game of Thrones is on and then cancel it as soon as it ends. That way we aren't paying for something we aren't using. 

3. Resale clothes after each season. Clothes hoarders of the world unite! As I mentioned before, I had (let's face it still have) items in my closet that have no business being there. Culprits include clothes that don't fit, have tears, have seen better days, or simply don't wear any more. I have started to implement two simple guidelines to help me with this. The first being if I am wearing a piece of clothing and I find it to have a tear beyond repair I toss it out at the end of the day. That prevents me from washing it and re-wearing it or washing it and living forever in my closet. The second is after each season I look at my clothes. For example winter has pretty much ended here in Texas. I have gone into my sweater drawer and taken a really good look at them. Again items that are not in good condition anymore have been taken out but then I take a good look at the rest and see when was the last time I wore them. I had a few pieces I hadn't worn since last year and one I can't even remember when. Off they went. I would rather have a condensed closet of good pieces than a closet full of items that I can't or don't wear. What I then do is take the clothes that are in good shape to the resale store. While I may not get a lot of money for them I still get something and it is better than them collecting dust in my closet. 

4. A/C Maintenance. Even if you feel like your unit is working properly and don't suspect that anything is wrong with it experts recommend it be cleaned once a year, ideally in the spring, to ensure it operate at peak energy efficiency and is ready to cool your house during the months you need it most. We had an old unit in our house and our bedroom was a sauna. It was on its last leg and husband had it replaced. That first night was glorious. I didn't wake up in the middle of the night proclaiming I was burning up. When our electric bill came around it had decreased, as husband put it, BIGTIME! Financial savings and happy wife. Win, win!

5. Prep that freezer. Before all the frozen treats come in for the warmer months, thaw and clean your freezer out (hi mystery meat). No need for it to work harder than it needs to to keep your ice cream treat frozen. Also how many times has it been full to the brim that when you close the door it actually kicks back a bit and you didn't notice it until the morning when everything in it has a light layer of ice over it? You better believe that freezer worked overtime to compensate for that change in temperature. 

Add these items to your to-do list and bask in the satisfaction as you tick each one off and be assured that your bank account isn't taken a hit that it doesn't need to. 


14 comments:

  1. This is a great post! We always think about cleaning our clothes out, but a quick few financial changes can really make a difference.

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    1. Yes and when you think about them overall, as in the impact they will make over the course of a year, it really adds up.

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  2. Really great ideas! We toyed with the idea of getting rid of cable, but in the end Mr. didn't think he could give up live sports. Now if they would just come up with something to watch live sports and bypass cable, we'd be all set!

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    1. I hear you! Luckily husband isn't about sports, just Game of Thrones.

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  3. Great post! We'd get rid of cable all together is if wasn't tied up with other stuff. Too much of a hassle at the moment to separate it all out.

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    1. Ah those bundles! I would still call and maybe see what your options are. You never know.

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  4. These are all great tips! We are looking at the phone package right now!

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  5. I could cry over you phone usage advice. As a blogger, I too am connected ALL day, but we don't have wifi where we live, and I am forced to pay for 100 gigs a month. It's horrible!!! We are hoping to find an alternate solution soon!

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    1. Oh no! That is tough! I wonder if your cell phone provider has some kind of hotspot device that would be cheaper.

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  6. Excellent tips! We're purchasing a house this spring, so we're taking spring financial cleaning to a whole new level!

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    1. Congrats! When I bought my first house the biggest impact on saving in electricity were my energy star windows. Something to look into.

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  7. These are great tips for spending smarter and eliminating costs! As I'm working on budgeting this month this post came at the perfect time. Thanks so much for sharing!

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    1. I hope you are able to apply some and reap the savings $$$

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