Finding relevant, straight-forward, and genuine advice on how to save money on every-day purchases seemed incredibly difficult:
- Finding what I was looking for seemed to be impossible as you’re wading through pages and pages of junk and filler content.
- If I did find what I was looking for, the content was incomplete/incorrect, often times leaving out better options (for a credit card, let’s say).
On top of that, I am blown away by how many incredibly intelligent people I know that are horrible with financial planning / money.
- People I know that aren’t using a credit card with any rewards or cash back whatsoever.
- People who assume that getting started is a ton of work, so they put it off each month, and now it’s 3 years later.
- People who think that one or two percent here and there isn’t a big deal.
- People who don’t take advantage of some big tax incentives (like using an FSA account for medical expenses, etc).
My goal with this project is to get the site to a point that I can just give a link to a friend/family member and allow them to quickly and easily stretch their dollars further.
- First, education – let’s say, on average, rewards and cash back would give 2% on every purchase a person makes. If dispensable income is $50,000 a year, that’s an extra $1,000 a year that a person could use for… anything! A vacation, a new TV, a few cases of good wine, etc.
- Second, action – providing quick and easy-to-follow instructions to get going. I’ve spent a ton of time digging through all this stuff, so hopefully it’s helpful to folks out there.
Also, you’ll see a few patterns in how I approach things:
- I’ll favor cash back over points pretty much across the board
- Cash has a value I can depend on
- Points fluctuate in value, and it’s hard to manage multiple points accounts, I forget about them, etc.
- Delta Skymiles is my exception
- I’ll favor a card with no annual fee over one with benefits that might offset the fee
- There is a guaranteed value in no annual fee
- Benefits/Rewards I might use (but often times not)
- I found that it’s hard to find many cards out there where the fee is easily overcome by benefits
- Once again, the Delta American Express is my exception
- I hate wasting money and time
- We work way too hard to let money just sit on the table while we walk away.
- I try to focus on are strategies that can be employed once and give recurring benefits
- I don’t get in to the churning aspect of credit cards, which is why you’ll see me ignore sign-up bonuses in my value calculations
Lastly, a little about me, which might help to make sense of where I’m focusing my efforts:
- Husband, father, homeowner
- Travel a fair amount for work; love traveling for pleasure
- Living in Minnesota (why you’ll see so many posts about Delta)
- Not a Tax Professional, Lawyer, Financial Advisor, etc.