How to look expensive while being cheap

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I am queen of the Tory Burch, Marc Jacobs, and whatever name brand that comes with a hefty price tag. Which may sound odd to you knowing that I talk so much about being frugal and ways to save money. Most people don’t believe me when I tell them how much I manage my household on, and how I can afford such luxury brands. Here are a few pointers I have notice keep you looking amazing without hurting your money goals. Plus who wants to compromise quality!!

 

REWARD POINTS

I don’t know how many times in my blog I talk about getting credit cards with good rewards. My household has 2 cards, an american express card and a bank of america card. I use both and earn over $250 a year in cash and gift cards (click here to read about how). With the extra $250 a month I use this to buy items I love, like right now I just put in a request for a $25.00 gift card to Athleta. It takes me about 2 months to net around $25 worth in point. I also get 2X the points if I use my Amex card to make a purchase. So I carefully wait on a sale and boom I order some super cute athletic wear. Get 2X the points back on the purchase plus I used Acorns (my investment app) that earned me 2% cash back in my portfolio. My total was $133 and my final cost to me was $30.44 From that one transaction you can see how credit card rewards add up.

 

LESS IS MORE

When I worked at Nordstrom rack I found these amazing Tory Burch sandals for $35.00 all leather. Not only was this a steal I knew once I bought them I wouldn’t be buying $15 sandals from Charlotte Russe every summer because the last pair wore out. Its been 3 years and they are still holding strong. Instead of opting for cheap materials and bad quality try buying the nicer better made brands and buy less of that item. Do your research before you buy and focus on the item being a classic rather than a fad item. Check out some cool blogs and dabble in the idea of being more minimalist. It’s a cool journey and worth looking into.

DIY

If you know how to do something then do it well. If you can do your own hair or nails eyebrows, etc. Do it and practice getting better at it. This is money you can stop paying someone else to do and use it on something worth your while. I typically do my own hair and nails. With me not spending money on a beautician I am able to buy items with a bigger price tag. Everyone gets a personal care budget, Jeremiah (my 1 year old) get $25 usually goes to play gyms he gets 1 haircut once every 3 months, Jamal get $40 2 haircuts a month and I get $25, however mine always ends up in the offering pail!!

A GOOD FIT

With my many years of retail experience I can tell you a good fit on anyone makes your clothes look more expensive and well made than the price tag. With a great fit you can fool anyone. I am 5’0 and anything that is baggy on me looks awful no matter the cost. Once I started buying petite sizes, it change the game. Many retail companies are doing their best to appeal to all sizes and shapes. Whether tall, short, plus or petite there is something for everyone.

 

CARE OF CLOTHES

I once cried to my mom when she washed and dried my favorite tee. It had beads on it and you couldn’t put in the dryer or it would fall apart. Reading the label on clothes is so important to the care and quality of your clothes. Once you start really putting some money and time invested into your closet you should really dab into caring for your clothes. Now I don’t buy things that are dry clean only, but many items I don’t dry and I do my best to wash on a delicate cycle.

 

GO HUNTING

I spend hours looking at deals all day!! If you have the time then it will pay off, I also like to do this so its more of a hobby for me. I typically go add a lot of items to my cart and then I work the basket like the stock market, buy low and sell high. I keep tabs on all items and once they go on sale I tend to buy the items. Sometimes the item will sell out and you have to be okay with that. For mothers day I was able to buy  at Nordstrom 2 dresses for $30 each due to me scouting them a whole 2 months before.

 

 

Don’t get caught in new trends that will die fast, get you a good few classic pieces and build from there. While looking expensive is fun and all, always remember its more important to have money saved up for emergencies. Rocking Gucci while your car is getting repo isn’t the best “look”. Stay true to who you are, and enjoy life. When you can find ways to enjoy your passion without breaking the bank go for it!!

6 Ways To Save $75+ This Month

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Here are a few of my quick, funny ways I and my family do to save money each month. A few of these tips we just started and have notice big savings! Some may not work for your family but it’s good to have options when it comes to savings.

 

1.SHOP AROUND FOR AUTO INSURANCE

So I have been with state farm for 10 years and I decided to look around and check different companies for quotes. After about 1 week of casually looking around my insurance company called trying to give me new ways to lower my bill. We opted for the drive save beacon, its a small item that sticks to our cars and gives you a discount(as long as your not a crazy driver). I also notice I haven’t change our mileage per year on the car. With being a SAHM I drive way less a year. All in all we saved $35 a month on insurance! Not to bad….I also tried root, its an insurance company that gives you a quote on how well you drive, I received $25 for testing them out. You can too if you use my referral. You don’t have to change insurance either to receive the money.

Click here to try root and receive $25 

Savings-$35 for me, but price ranges

 

2.TIME YOUR GROCERY SHOPPING

I am the queen of saving so much money on my families grocery budget. However, this past week my husband watched our son so I could get out for a few hours. I decided to go grocery shopping. With no reason to rush or baby about to explode with a tantrum, I took my time. I went down every isle, I touched every product. I also went over our budget by $15.00!!! That extra $15 was on items that were not on my list. I can shop in 30 min and get everything we need. This trip I took almost an hour and got a whole lot of stuff we didn’t. Time your first trip, make that number a time to beat. Once you get good at shopping fast try to keep it that way.

Savings-$15, but very by person

 

3.GO GREEN IN SOME WAY

I am all about being eco-friendly and treating this earth with some respect. But did you know you can also save money as well. My husband loves water bottles and we recently gave up purchasing a case at our local grocery store. I notice it was money we didn’t have to spend. Get a Brita filter, and reusable water bottle. Brita states you can save over $300 a year switching to a reusable water system. Just replace your filter and your good to go.

Savings-$25 a month

 

4.AUTO PAY & PAPERLESS BILLING

Check with your phone and internet provider. Most give you a discount on going paperless. Call or check with your bills to see if they offer some discount for paperless billing and auto-pay. I know we save $10 a month with Verizon, and At&t does it if you have cable and internet with them.

Savings- Usually $10 per company

 

5.UNSUBSCRIBE

If your into online shopping and buying items on sale, I would unsubscribe to your favorite stores. You save more when you don’t buy. I notice I tend to buy more clothes when I get hit with a 50% off marketing email. Somehow my online browser gets hit with a cart full of clothes I didn’t even plan on buying. Now with my son I tend to spend all the clothe buying on him. I only use gift cards from my credit card rewards program, and once I get enough points I get the cards and wait on a sale. And if you shop at old navy you already know they don’t go 2 days without running a sale. At first you might feel that your missing out on deals, but your wallet will be glad you did it.

SAVINGS- Varies on person

 

6.GAS BUDDY (app)

This app checks gas prices near you, so you can receive the cheapest price per gallon around. My husband drives 35 miles to work and back. So price per gallon is pretty serious around here. It was just me that had the app and I started noticing I was getting cheaper gas than him. I immediately made him get the app and once he started using it we saved on average $5-$10. The big thing is once you hit 1/4 on your gas tank start looking at the app and go fill up once you notice prices are cheaper. When your completely low on gas and need it, your not looking for cheap you just fill up on desperation.

SAVINGS- $5-$10

Budgeting and saving money is a odd passion of mine, so I find fun in doing all these things and finding new ways to save. However, I do know many people dread thinking of money and would rather save by automating there money. These are just fun quick tips for someone needing to find more wiggle room in their budget!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 Cheap Summer Activities

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Its hot, your kids want to get out the house and you have $0 to go on a huge family vacation don’t worry I got you! With an active 17 month old that LOVES the outdoors and an income that literally only allows free activities. I have found many ways to have fun on a low budget.

PARK HUNT

I seriously stay up at night looking at new parks that I haven’t been too and what things they offer. Are there slides, a trail, swings. While going to the park isn’t new try bringing water guns, bubbles, water balloons. I usually go shopping at 5 Below (everything is $5 and below), if your area doesn’t have that store try your local dollar store. They most likely have summer toys that are fun too pack. We also bought a summer tote (only $5) and put all the bubbles, kite, and beach towels in it. So once we wake up get dress I grab the bag and dip! Easy, quick, and super cheap.

 

SPLASH PADS

Got little ones that can’t swim yet, try finding a splash pad in your area. They have recently gain popularity as cities prefer them over pools due to safety. You can’t drown and are family friendly. We have 2 in our area, both are free and my son loves them.

 

LOCAL WATER PARK

Of course you can always go to the big parks like hurricane harbor, but local water parks are much cheaper and kid friendly for the little ones. Ours is $8 a person and 2 and under are free. Most have a lazy river, a splash pad and 3 big water slides. I prefer these as I can watch my son without getting overwhelmed with too many people. Also go to there website and look for deals, week days usually have special pricing.

 

LOCAL LIBRARY

We are regulars for the library classes, but I notice once summer comes around they start to offer more classes and new activities. Go to your cities website and check events, you can normally find something for all age groups. Price is also FREE

 

GROUPON/EBATES

Try looking on Groupon for actives, due to Jeremiahs age it can be difficult but if you have kids 3 and up, they can have some pretty cool activities. Pair your purchase with ebates and get cash back plus if you have never used ebates try my link here and get $10 just for signing up. Its just a site that gives you cash back for purchasing items online, just remember to go through ebates.com first before you buy something.

 

To make sure you don’t spend to much in the summer try a cash system. It works really well for us. At the beginning of every month I pull $25 out for Jeremiahs activities, that normally allows one big activity a week and then I plug in free activities for the rest of the week. He laughs and plays just as hard at the park as he does at a water park. Kids just love to get outside. Don’t overthink it and believe you have to go on some lavish cruise post picture on your social media to seem happy. Don’t let comparison rob you of joy! What are some fun activities you and your family like to do?

 

 

 

How To Create A Budget That Works

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Budgets are the new wave in the financial world and if you haven’t already heard about them, let me give you a crash course. So a budget is a set plan that tells your every dollar where to go for each month. Many people run away from budgets or have loose designed planned budgets. I will instruct you on how to create one, that not only works but will grow into a monthly activity.

FIND YOUR CORE AMOUNT

The amount of money you spend each month on reoccurring bills that are necessary for you to live I call core amount. This includes, rent, water bill, car insurance, utilities, internet, car note, cell bill, etc. These are items you know wont change month to month and you can easily predict the amount. Once you add this number up, keep in mind this is the amount you must absolutely make every month to live. Obviously, utilities and water may change but if you can’t live without it included it in this total.

ADD SURPRISES

This is when budgeting gets tricky if you don’t account for this space. Now obviously you can’t predict when your car will break down. However you can predict small things like, Mothers day gifts, baby needs new car seat, car needs oil change. When you sit down to budget look at whats happening in that month and try to put a set amount on what your going to spend. So its may 9th, me and my husband budgeted my mothers day gift and my mom spending the week with us. So therefor he doesn’t go crazy at the mall, and it allows us to figure out how many restaurants we can all go to when she flies in. Just remember budgeting is putting a name on every dollar you own!

INCOME

Once you finish getting your core amount and adding in all the surprises of the next month, you must come to income. Now for some people this is easy if you are salary. Salary people just write down how much you will bring in this month and your done. My hourly people you will need to write down the average you bring home. So if you typically bring in $1900 a month and one month you bring in $2200, just remember to save the extra for the months you don’t quite make the $1900 monthly income.

MATH

Last step,(my favorite part), do the math. Take your core income and your surprised expenses add them up now minus them against your monthly income. You should have some money left over. Thats because you haven’t taken into account your grocery,gas, and walking around cash! The amount you have leftover will help you decided the type of groceries you can buy, the restaurants you can go to, and the amount of nail/hair appointments you can make. This is what makes my way of budgeting easier and more efficient. When you see you only have $300 dollars leftover to spend on food and gas you SHOULD be willing to cut out restaurants and miscellaneous because the math doesn’t fit your budget. This way allows you to focus on the bills that make sense(rent, water,etc). When you get to the math part of budgeting and see all the things that don’t make your budget you will need to start making executive decisions, I call them budget cuts!! With this leftover money put how much you can spend on things like food and gas. I typically spend 200-220 on food, and gas is 100 for my family. If we only have $300 leftover for the month, I start looking at what can I cut. Do I need to lower my mothers day gift budget, maybe Jamal can get an edge up vs a haircut. When you know you don’t have a lot of money leftover you will start to change the way you spend.

Let me be super honest here, budgeting gets very difficult, it will takes months before you actually hit it on the target. Life comes with so many loops and turns its hard to direct money, but with chaos comes order you need both. This is what makes budgeting so important. You will set out a budget of where you want your money to go and of course your car will break down that month, or some random expense will pop up that will re-allocate your money elsewhere. Be ready and be prepared it takes time to get it right and some months you may not hit the mark. It took me about 5 months to finally hit the dot. I would get close and my son would run out of diapers, or my husbands car needed an oil change and I forgot to budget that expense. So start this journey knowing it will be a long trip and some months will get difficult. Don’t give up, keep pushing the journey will be fun and worth it in the end!

My 1 Year Review Of Robinhood (The Investment app)

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If you haven’t read my post on robinhood click here. I have officially had and traded with this app for over a year now. My background on stock is very bleak, I didn’t know much but the basic and few quotes I looked up from warren buffet. I did small but detailed research into a few stocks I used or thought were good buys and dove in and bought a share of each. I didn’t try to time the market and get the lowest price, my goal was to buy and hold and see how life would roll!!! Lets see what happened.

The Good

Square: ticker SQ– I bought this stock at $23.60, it now trades for $47.05. I gained $23.41 from buying and holding this stock. That is a 99.24% gain. (you want to be somewhere near 8-12%) My thought on buying this was it was an IPO(a new stock) and I saw how many young entrepreneurs were using the card reader. With buying local, shopping in the community, being a big thing for my generation I knew this stock would potentially grow, didn’t think it would be this fast!

Phillips 66: ticker PSX-I bought this stock $82.92 the first share and came back and bought another share at $91.38, it now trades for $111.81. I gained $49.29 that’s a 28.28% increase. Now I didn’t technically pick it I asked my husband what he wanted to buy and he looked up warren buffets stocks and this was one he owned. With a 2.70% yield and a warren approval we made a nice come up.

Target: ticker TGT– I bought at $54.64 and it trades at $71.73. That’s a gain of $17.08 at 31.26%. I didn’t do to much research I just thought well dang I’m always shopping here and I love this brand I might need to buy a share. I try to buy in spaces I understand, and want to be a shareholder of.

Teladoc: ticker TDOC– I bought at $32.90 and it trades for $42.00, that’s a gain of $9.10 at 27.66%. My mom told me about this stock. She believes this is where healthcare is going. I also recalled in one of my benefit meetings at work HR was explaining to us that we could use an online portal to talk to a doctor. It was new and seemed really futuristic, so I thought why not give it a go, and at only 30 a share my risk isn’t too high.

 

THE UGLY

Fitbit: ticker FIT– I bought 2 shares, one at $5.43 and $6.04, it now trades for $5.28. That’s a loss of 0.91 a -7.93%. I saw this stock at $5 a share and thought lets go for it. And now over a year it is still suffering. I still believe in fitbit but so far it has loss me money!!

However I wrote this post about a week ago many stocks have changed and fitbit is finally in the black for me. With stocks you can be up one day and down another. Thats why you must invest for the long hall and not get emotional when your stock isn’t doing well, and you sell too quickly.

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With no experience in trading and no educational background in the stock market I have wounded up making $102.33 that’s a gain of 35%. No savings account could net you that yield! I plan on sticking with Robinhood and trading with it for a while now. A few stock I plan on holding till my son graduates, others I am waiting to trade soon. Do your research don’t over think it, start small, and start reaping the benefits!!!

Any stocks you have bought that gave you great gains comment below?

 

 

 

 

 

Credit Card Improvement 101

 

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Looking back at my views I notice that you guys seemed to be really interested in credit cards. I will be open and honest I only have 4 years worth of credit history, my score starting out around 700 and now I hoover over 790. I was just an average american with a credit card in college, and just worked it up from there. I have no mortgage, or student loans on my account, however I’ve worked with many people who were close to filing bankruptcy and helped them move there score over 100 points in 1 year! I also know the quick fixes that can improve your score by next month!

 

KNOWLEDGE IS KEY

If you can recite your phone number, or social security from memory you should be able to know what your credit score it, or the range it falls under. When you don’t know this viable information it’s easy for your score to suffer. Knowing is half the battle. What if your identity was robbed, what if there was a mistake on your report and your score is suffering from it. With many credit cards and app like Credit Karma you should be able to access your score rather easy. Once I did the research and put it to the test I was able to see direct impacts of my score going up.

 

NO DEBT NO PROBLEMS

We all know the saying more money more problems, well its opposite in the credit world. The more money you can have loan to you the better, but the trick is to only use it at a max of 30%. Everyone in life is out to win, and how the credit card companies “win” is they try to give you a 0% intro rate and a 5,000 limit. You then rack it up and by the time the year is over with, they hit you with a 24% apr rate. Ouch!!! The way to improve your score is only use 30% of what has been lend to you. This is called credit utilization. I myself love using my credit cards. I am all about the points and cash back, however I can’t just load my credit cards with bills and pay them off in full every month and expect my score to go up. I can only use 30% of what my card gives me to make my score improve. If you feel like you always spend over 30% ask for a credit limit increase, or until the time being work on self control and use 30% for the next few months and watch your score go up then ask for a credit limit increase.

 

PAY OFF IN FULL

Only put on credit what you have in cash. When you try to out smart the credit companies and charge your cards to get a higher score that can be great, until you have no cash to pay the full balance. When you get tempted and start paying the min, you will lose control and end up in a ball of debt. Make sure to only charge what you can afford. I tend to just put bills, gas and groceries on my card. I may have the credit limit to buy a boat but it doesn’t mean I need too!!

 

MULTIPLE ACCOUNTS

Credit cards help your credit score. When the credit companies see you only have 1 card and you may use it well. That’s great but it also put you in the high risk category as you don’t have enough credit to really asses your worthiness. I would start small and only open another account gradually as this has a small impact on your credit. If you have 650 plus credit and are using 30% of cards and notice your score not moving you can apply for another card. But please use caution this tip has more to do with someone who doesn’t have student loans,car notes, and more than 4 cards. I was one of those, I opened a new account and my score went up 11 points and 25 the month after.

 

ON TIME PAYMENTS

My mothers favorite saying growing up was, if you want to get paid on time you pay other people on time. You must always pay your credit card bill on time, the moment you miss one payment your score can suffer tremendously. If you hit hard times and can’t pay the full balance at least pay the min, its better than being hit with a late fee and interest. On time payments make up a huge factor in your score so don’t let forgetting to make a payment cause your score to suffer 100 points or more.

 

Your credit score is all about how you play the game. If you know the rules then you will be able to succeed and win. However not staying updated and educated on the requirements of your score will make it suffer.

 

 

 

 

When Saving Gets Hard

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Of course you know you need to save and you know the benefits of having an emergency fund but at times it seems impossible. For once I can finally understand this feeling. I told my husband man I remember those days when if I liked something at a store I just bought it. With baby here and living on one income, this whole buy now attitude had to change and it wasn’t an easy one. Yes, even for me Mrs. super saver. See no matter if your a fashionista, or into video games there is always something out there that can grab your eye and your money! Check out my cool funky ways to calm the lion, and save the ducks.

 

SAVE YOUR GOAL IMAGE

Whatever it is your saving for screenshot it. We really want to buy a house, so today I put the image as my background to remind me every-time why I have to save. Small reminders like this make it easy to put the 85% off shoes back! Whether its a car a house or just a set amount find the image and save it everywhere.

 

STAY INFORMED

I am a huge supported of podcast and Netflix documentaries. Try to spend time doing things that don’t cost money and keep you knowledgeable. Since I am a first time home buyer I watch many docs, and listen to podcast on home buying. This keeps me engaged in my goal and educated. I also know eventually my car will retire and I will need a new one, I sometimes watch youtube video on best “SUVS IN THE MARKET” and why.

 

MAKE IT FUN

While money can be boring to most people find a way to spice it up. Challenge your love ones or your friend. See who can save the most, talk about dreams of you in your goal. Keep it fun, and fresh!

 

NAME IT AND CLAIM IT

For or down payment we decided to open a separate account away from normal savings. We named it houseaccount. So anytime we move money over it states transfer to house account. Not only does it help keep track at where we are, I am more motivated to add money to that bank!

 

Enjoy this time, because months/years from now you will be laughing at how you ate rice and beans for dinner, or how you drove a clunker car for years just to buy a new car in cash. Sometimes we spend to much time looking at others peoples life, items and ads too realize the beauty in what we already have!!

 

Why Passive Income Matters

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So your killing it in the side hustle expertise and now, you hear about this new thing called “passive income”. So, passive income is money you receive for not actually being involved, examples would be like rental property or dividends from stocks, we will dive into more ways to dig into passive income later. Lets focus on the fact that you are working on your side job and your making profit, paying off debt and feeling good. But why not keep pushing that envelope. You can usually pull from your side hustle a way to bring in passive income. So I am a graphic designer and my main business maybe freelance work, but I can also set up a etsy print shop and sell printable. This allows people to shop my work, and print the art from their home. I wake up every morning to money in the account without having to lift a finger.

 

 

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IMPORTANCE

The reason I push for entrepreneurs to have a stream of passive income is because you only have so many hours in a day.  Even if you work all 24 hours, that is your cap. You can raise your hourly rate but at some point you will hit a wall and want to bring in more money. Passive allows you to still remain focus on your other jobs but can bring in money with little to no work once you set it up.

 

 

 

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SICK/EMERGENCY

As I write this post its -6 degrees and it seems like everyone is coming down with the flu. If I was a photographer I probably wouldnt have to many gigs with the weather being cold, or I maybe sick and cannot perform a job. The passive income will come no matter if your sick or if an emergency comes up. However if your a healthy human and you usually stay away from being sick. What about your child, or your family member? If they need you right away there is no PTO days in the freelance world. But in passive income there is always a paycheck!

 

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STREAMS

You have heard it from every business book in the world. Make sure to have 7 streams of income, although I haven’t quite got to 7, having multiple amounts is definitely a benefit. America is a fast growing capitalist world, some trends come and go and others last forever. While your podcast might be killing it your blog may dwindle but that’s okay, streams change. As long as there is a stream your doing great.

 

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INTERNET

Living in the internet boom, we can all contribute something. There is blogging, youtube, advertising, affiliate sponsoring, printable, the list is endless. And while you may think you don’t have a talent that can consist of passive income think again. That might be your fresh idea. Sit down and think of ways you can increase your wealth and create some passive money for your bank account.

 

If anything hopefully this post gets you thinking more about passive income. Sometime starting small ideas lead to bread-winning ideas. I started selling t-shirts, then decided on selling a few prints. Months later the prints where out selling my t shirts. Small ideas are great starting points, get to thinking and put your thoughts to actions.

How To Save Money By Shopping At TJMAX

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So you may think of this store for clothes, a few home decor and baby items. But tjmax doesn’t stop their they have everything and they have it for the right price. I live in walking distance to a tjx and I have notice a few items to be intensely cheaper than your average walmart/target price. I also notice that you can find items like, toothpaste, deodearant, body wash, laundry detergent, and dish-washing soap. I mean the list is endless and plus all the items are name brand or eco friendly.

WHAT THIS MEANS FOR YOU

If you don’t like the idea of buying off brand at stores I would opt to shop at discount store like tjx, ross, marshalls for items like I listed. This way you can keep your favorite brands in your home but pay half the price.

HOW TJ-MAX GETS ITS ITEMS

So, you might be wondering how can a store have items like these at prices this low. Well what happens is, dove may make 1,000 spray deodorants, but only sell 500. Tjmax will then swoop in and ask to buy all there un-sold items at a discounted rate. Then take the item and sell it at its store for a profit.

Candle Selection

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I use too always buy candles from bath and body works, however I got tired of constantly waiting on the 2 for $22 sale, or stocking up when items were cheaper. My husband surprised me with a candle from tjx and I never looked back. You can get a 3 wick candle soy that burns forever for $7.99. With no need of coupons or watching your email for deals this makes the better buy.

BABY PRODUCTS

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If you have a child please buy all your products here, they are so cheap. I have bought my sons detergent here, his dish soap for his bottle cleanings, I have even bought diapers. Most of the time honest will discontinue a design or a product size and sell it tjmax. We have the laundry detergent that is 128 oz it has lasted his first year and no one sell that size anymore. So if you see a product you like for the right price I would stock up. They may not have the same item next week.

SKIP THE CLOTHES

Just like target try to go in for only the items you need. I love this store so I can easily lose it. I try to only shop the home and body section and leave the clothing alone. With my son I may check out his section but they have toys and bibs and small items that I can normally keep myself from spending extra money.

CONCLUSION

I really think if you have a Tj-Max, Marshalls, or Ross near you, try checking it out. It might not work for you but it also might save you a lot of money depending on the products you buy and what your store may carry!

This post is not sponsored or endorsed by tjmax, these are my opinions.

Quality Over Quantity

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For the first time I will actually tell you to splurge on the good stuff. But hear me out first before you close the browser and ball out on items. If you haven’t tried minimalism then I think its something worth looking into. Me and my husband tried it and while it didn’t last to long it did clear out alot of space in our closet and made us opt to buy quality clothing.

 

WHEN TO SPLURGE?

So, can you go out and just ball out at Nordstrom and throw away all your old clothes. No, but moving forward look into what you spend most of your money on replacing. Are you constantly buying new jeans because yours are fading, or tops because they always tear in the washer? When you identify the issue you can start to build a wardrobe with less items but better quality.

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FAST FASHION

Fast fashion is clothing that is quickly made from the catwalk to consumer, it doesn’t last long the trends tend to fade quickly and clothing usually ends up in landmines. Think of stores like, Forever21, H&M, Old Navy. These retailers make items that will get you maybe through one season but end up in a bag of trash or at goodwill. Fast fashion also tends to create a world of child slavery, poor wages for the workers, and terrible working conditions. Now I get that we cant control what companies do but with enough knowledge we can make an informed decision when we are at the mall. Most people will tell me they can only afford forever21 clothes. But when you truly add up the cost of replacing shirts, jeans, pants every year you will be able to see the real cost of those items. I have worked in retail and lets be honest you can tell when a shirt is a well made shirt. You don’t need a degree in fashion to know great quality made items.

 

FURNITURE/ELECTRONICS

I am pretty sure you have heard, “you get what you pay for”. Well that saying goes toward everything from insurance down to batteries. Do you research and see does the off brand electronic save you money in the long run, will the dell computer out last the more expensive apple product? When I was in college I bought an imac for $1200 pretty pricey, however its been 6 years and I have never had a virus or even needed to take it in to get fixed. When it comes to bigger items, spend time finding what is best for you and what will last.

 

USAGE

The experts state we only use 20% of our closet and the rest just sits. So why do we need so many clothes when we are going to always choose the same outfits over and over again? In past generations quality was more important but with fast fashion companies like H&M, and Forever 21 we fall to quickly for the cheap price and stuff our closet with crap. Next time you go out shopping ask yourself can you wear this year over year, and do I have something like this in my closet?

 

KID CLOTHING

I love shopping, its a hobby of mine and now that I have a baby boy I love buying him new clothes. Now for my son it makes sense for him to have fast fashion he will go through it in months. However I try not to have so many clothes for him since he is so little (I am also blessed to have a family that usually buys all his clothing). I would rather spend the money on his shoes, but I only buy 1 or 2 pairs. I notice the cheap pair fall off, and scuff easily and its not worth the headache. My son has 1 pair of jeans and 1 pair of khakis, the rest of his closet is full of comfy clothes for him to run and play in.

 

PRICE TAG SHOCK

If you step out of your comfort zone and try the quality over quantity, you will likely have culture shock walking into a Nordstrom, or Ann taylor over your normal stores. However start small and buy just a few pieces at a time. After I started working at Ann taylor I notice how much longer my clothes lasted and stopped shopping cheap. I still have my jeans from 4 years ago, no fade no rip nothing. Plus at the higher end store if something does go wrong with your clothes they usually are more than happy to fix the problem. Take your time, clean out your closet and make purposeful decision when shopping.

Great infographic for reference (image source) 

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