Richard Dumont's Blog
If you have ever thought "is it worth it to spend extra on a product or should you get something cheap?" you have probably been wondering if the additional cost worth it. Price can be a very prominent determining factor in our purchasing decisions especially if you are on a tight budget. The goal is to make sure that you are not sacrificing when you make a cost-based decision. There are things that everyone knows are worth the extra cost, but you are wondering if they are worth it for you! Is organic food really better for you? Should you spend more for make-up or can you get by at the drugstore? Will that rug or mattress or lawnmower have a significantly longer life then its cheaper counterpart and if it will, does that matter to you and your situation? Take a look at these categories to see if you relate.
Food and make-up
Organic food has become quite a craze but is it worth it? The answer depends on why you are buying it. If you are trying to stay away from pesticides and other harmful additives in your food then maybe. For example apples, strawberries, potatoes and greens among others all test higher for amounts of pesticides. Make-up goes on your skin which is your largest organ. Your skin absorbs what is on it within a minute of being applied, and low-quality products can block pores and cause breakouts in the process. High-quality brands tend to last much longer than cheap ones since each application requires less product. Always research to determine what is best for you.
The same principle in the house as in your body
If the product that you are looking at will be for a temporary purpose, then it may be okay to settle for the cheaper option. On the other hand, if you are looking for something that will last a few years or that will be well-used, such as lawn equipment or a rug or water heater, considering a better quality product could be essential to keeping the cost down. For instance, if you decide to settle on the $100 lawn mower for your half-acre lot, then it will be unlikely to last more than one season, not to mention taking you longer on that chore each time. On the other hand, if you spent $300 or more on a higher quality mower, it is likely to last you for much longer.
Do your research and find help from professionals near you
Your needs from what you are purchasing can help you to determine if the cost is worth it for you. Keep in mind what it is used for, how long it will be needed and how much use it will get. When you are considering a purchase and want to know the pros and cons of cost versus quality look for someone who knows the products that you are looking at like the customer assistant at your local home improvement store or mattress expert, etc.
If budgeting isn’t your thing, you’ll be glad to discover that it’s quite simple. There’s a way to categorize your spending and save money easily. If you learn the rule, it will become so automatic that you won’t even think about it. If you’re saving money for a home, this practice will be essential. Break your budget down into three categories:
- Living expenses
- Financial goals
- Personal spending
Half of your budget should go towards living expenses. This number includes all of the essentials like rent or mortgage, utilities, groceries, commute costs, and insurances.
20 percent of your income should go towards other financial goals like savings, investments, or paying down debt. Credit card bills, student loans, and other bills would fall under this category. This category is also where you’d save for your down payment, closing costs, and other expenses. This percentage can be adjustable depending on how much debt you have or how much you need to save for retirement.
The remaining 30 percent of your income can go towards personal spending. This category includes everything that you use your money for but isn’t a necessity. This percentage is also flexible. If your lifestyle doesn’t require you to use all 30 percent each month, you can indeed save more money.
A Clear Plan
These categories simplify your budget. Even if you make some adjustments to the numbers, the outline truly makes budgeting easy even for the most scatterbrained among us. It allows you to see where your money goes clearly. It also works no matter what kind of living situation you have.
The great thing about this budgeting plan is that you have some future needs built into it. Many times, when we budget, we think of our immediate needs and our shorter term goals. Saving for any occasion can never happen too early. You are able to not only focus on your current goals and the future.
First, determine your monthly income. This number is how much money you take home after taxes. From here, you’ll be able to split your money into categories by percentages. If your income fluctuates frequently, you’ll need to take an average of your monthly income to determine your numbers.
Next, you should take a look at your spending habits. These include everything from your morning latte to your monthly rent payment. From here you can make adjustments. Perhaps you need to look for a less expensive apartment. Maybe you need to cut down your weekly pizza to a bi-monthly purchase. Whatever you see in your finances, a simple percentage rule gives you the tools you need to become a saver and be well on your way to the purchase of your first home.
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If you strive to make your home unique and have a particular style in mind, it can be difficult to find the right decorations to meet your needs.
With a Target in every town and strip malls containing the same stores carrying the same mass-produced furniture and decorations, where can you turn to find handmade home decor? In this article, we’ll share with you five sources for just that.
What started as a project in the founder’s New York apartment in 2005 has turned into a multi-million dollar online business. Etsy is the undisputed champion retailer of handmade goods.
From clothing to home decor, if you can think of it you’ll likely find someone who makes it and sells it on Etsy. One of the advantages of Etsy is being able to contact the seller personally and ask questions or make custom requests. This makes Etsy one of the best ways to find home decor that is made to order.
Another benefit of Etsy is how easy it is to search and browse. If you aren’t ready to buy an item or want to wait for a second iteration, you can always follow the seller or save them item for later on when you’re ready to purchase.
We know what you’re thinking. Pinterest is a place where you pin photos of home decor, not a place where you buy it. And while that may be true, it’s also a great way to find handmade goods that you might not see anywhere else. Here’s how to find handmade goods on Pinterest.
Search for and follow Pinterest boards that are created by or related to handmade home decor. You’ll find hundreds of boards like this already in existence.
Start pinning some of your favorite items so you can research them more later.
Pick the items you’d like to purchase off of your board and research the maker of those items. Oftentimes, the people who made the items are the ones who initially pin them. Other times the pins lead directly to the sellers webstore.
If you can’t find a webstore to buy the item from, try contacting them directly to see if the item is for sale online
Polyvore is a fascinating website. It’s like if you took Pinterest, a dressing room, and a webstore and mixed them together. Polyvore is often used for clothing, however they have a growing selection of furniture and home decor available.
You create an “outfit” of furniture and home decor to see how they will look together. Then you can place an order for the items you want to buy.
Before Pinterest, many craftsmen sold their goods on Ebay. And many still do to this day. Ebay is also a good place to find second-hand, unique home decor that you wouldn’t find anywhere else. And, if you’re lucky, you can win bids on items at a low price.
Uncommon Goods might not have common goods, but they do run a very conventional and straightforward online store that is easy to use and contains a range of unique home decor that you won’t find anywhere else.
Deciding whether to set up a home showing sometimes can be a tough decision. Yet a home showing can make a world of difference for a buyer as he or she searches for the ideal residence.
Ultimately, there are many reasons to schedule a home showing, and these include:
1. You can look beyond a home listing.
A home listing generally offers details about a house's age and features, as well as photographs of different areas of a residence. But a home listing can only provide so much information. Fortunately, a home showing enables you to assess a house in person and decide whether a residence is right for you.
During a house showing, you can walk around a residence and view each room. If you want to further pursue a residence after a showing, you can submit an offer to purchase. Or, if you find a house fails to match your expectations, you can always continue your search for your dream home.
2. You can gain comprehensive insights into a house's condition.
When it comes to evaluating a house's condition, it typically is a good idea to attend a showing. That way, you can get an up-close look at a home's condition and determine whether a residence needs major or minor repairs.
A home showing enables you to analyze a residence both inside and out. After a showing is complete, you can decide whether you are satisfied with the condition of a home and map out your homebuying journey accordingly.
3. You can imagine what it would be like if you purchase a home.
A home showing makes it easy to envision what life may be like if you purchase a particular house. As such, a showing may prove to be crucial as you pursue your dream residence.
If you feel good about a house following a showing, you should not hesitate to submit a competitive homebuying proposal. Conversely, if you feel uncomfortable with a residence, you may want to pursue other options.
Of course, hiring a real estate agent may be exceedingly valuable as you search for your ideal house. A real estate agent can schedule home showings at your convenience and provide plenty of tips to help you pursue residences in any housing market. By doing so, a real estate agent will empower you with the insights you need to make an informed decision about a house.
Let's not forget about the assistance that a real estate agent will provide after you find your dream house, either. At this point, a real estate agent will help you put together a competitive offer to acquire your ideal residence. And if you have any concerns or questions as you move along the homebuying journey, a real estate agent is happy to respond to them.
Ready to find your dream residence? Schedule a home showing, and you take the next step to acquire your ideal house.