Good morning everyone!
We have some bad news and good news…
Bad news: We didn’t win the $2.04 billion powerball lottery last week. 😪
Good news: We already have everything we need and want in life! Food, shelter, loving friends and family, a fun workplace, and a delicious beer in hand… 😉
They say “the secret to having it all —> is knowing that you already do”. And we couldn’t agree more.
The lottery is fun to think about. But you know what’s even more fun?… Enjoying and living *real life*, no matter how much money you have. 👍🌴😎
OK, onto this week’s money stuff 👇👇👇
We talk so much about saving money and tightening the belt, we also need to balance that out with little rewards and celebrations here and there.
So this week’s mission is: Treat yourself.
Whatever your ‘craft beer equivalent’ is — rustle some up and cheers to yourself. You’ve earned it. 💪
Frugal 👍 vs. Cheap 👎
According the this survey from Slickdeals, 92% of Americans consider frugality an attractive quality in a partner or potential partner. Woohoo!
But, there’s a fine line between “frugal” and “cheap”…
Being frugal: (value > cost)
- Buying off-brand items 👍
- Thrift store shopping 👍
- Using coupons & searching for deals 👍
- Keeping old technology until it dies 👍
- Drinking at home vs. at bars 👍
- Valuing your time 👍
Being cheap: (lowest price > value)
- Not leaving tips or giving to others 🙅
- Avoid paying when it’s your turn 🙅
- Only focused on short term savings 🙅
- Relying on free rides 🙅
- Skimping on essentials (like hygiene products!) 🙅
- Take all free stuff, even if you don’t plan to use it🙅
Sure, there are some grey areas… And sometimes being cheap is necessary to get through a tough spot. But in general, being cheap is a losing mindset in the long run.
- 👨💻 New HTM Blog: Frugal vs Cheap – There’s a big difference
- 💻 Mindful tips: Post about ideas for more mindful spending!
- 📝 Personal Capital Survey: Have American’s become more frugal? (yes! 😉)
TOGETHER WITH MINT MOBILE
Buy 3 Get 3 Promo with Mint Mobile 📲
Woot woot!! Mint Mobile is back with another killer promotion!!! Buy 3 months of service, and get another 3 free.
Let’s say you switch to an “unlimited everything” plan… you’ll only pay $90 for 6 months of service (and NO lock in contract – so you can upgrade/downgrade/change providers afterwards with no repercussions)
Seriously, we love Mint Mobile even without any promotions! So if you’re paying more than $30 per month for cell service, check out Mint mobile plans for you and your family. (Then put all your excess savings towards investments!!!! 🤑)
Psst! Here’s also a list of all the cheap cell phone plans that we love!
Low Cost (and fun!) Date Ideas 😘
Apparently people are dating less due to inflation. 🙁
Here’s a survey from The Balance showing how most daters are adjusting to rising costs 👇👇👇
But dating doesn’t have to be expensive… Rising costs just means you need to get a little more creative when it comes to planning dates!
Here are a few tried and true date ideas that won’t break the bank:
Watch the sunrise or sunset: just Google the best places to watch the sunset in your city, and tell your date to meet you there half an hour before set time. If it’s warm out you can bring some bubbly drinks from home, or if it’s cold bring some hot chocolate in a thermos.
Listen to throwback music together: Before your date, look up a bunch of top hits from the decade when they/you were in high school and college. You can do this anywhere, like a public place with a small speaker, or even while out walking together.
Explore museums, libraries, town squares: Each city has cool (and free!) places to explore. Walking tours don’t cost too much and you learn a ton of new things, together.
Feed ducks, squirrels, or local wildlife: You can save food scraps from home if you want for this. Just research beforehand where the best cute feeding places are and what foods are safe for the animals to eat!
Go thrift shopping!: Play the game where you and your date each have $10 and need to buy presents for the other person with that money. Fun, cheap, and you get to see how thrifty your date is. 😉
Whether you’re single, dating, or married, don’t let inflation stop you from going on dates and enjoying connections with other people.
- 💡 Date Night Wingman: Creative Date Night Ideas under $20
- 👩❤️👨 HTM Blog Post: 30 x Cheap Date Ideas
- 📰 Marriage is the bees knees: …At least when it comes to growing wealth
Recent Fun Finds…
Crypto Crash 📉
Big drama in the crypto world last week… FTX (one of the biggest crypto exchanges) collapsed and took down pretty much the whole crypto sector with it. Here’s a cool 7 min video explaining the whole shebang if you’re interested.
SL Forgiveness 🧑🎓
We’re in a bit of a holding pattern while the student loan forgiveness program is challenged in courts. We’ll be covering this in more detail on Friday’s podcast!
How do “wealthy people” (those with assets over $3M) invest their money? And how do they feel about different asset classes? A great summary & commentary article written here by our buddy Nick Maggiulli.
2023 Travel ✈️
Here are the top 10 “trending destinations” for 2023 based on American Express’s travel booking data. (While this is cool to look at, is it just me or wouldn’t you rather visit places where everyone else is *not going*? Popular destinations sounds to me like “busy & expensive”, right?)
Next month, Airbnb is introducing “total price display“, so listings will include all the fees (like cleaning and stuff). This makes it easier to compare rentals apples to apples, and not get surprised will silly little fees that show up when you’re ready to check out.
Paid workouts 🏃♀️
This app called Evidation pays you to work out. It connects to your fitness tracker (like Apple watch, Fitbit, Samsung watch, etc) and gives you points based on physical activities you do. Those points then convert to dollars once you’ve accumulated enough. They pay out is small (you earn like ~$10 every few months) but not bad for something you already do! — Cheers to Braydon for sharing this tip 🙏
BILT Rewards 💳
We mentioned this on last week’s Friday Flight episode… Here’s a post with more info on BILT — a new platform and credit card that lets you earn points/rewards for paying your rent!
HOW *YOU* MONEY
Josh, 37y/o from S.F. Bay Area, CA 🌁
Occupation: Traffic Engineer
Paycheck deductions: -$1,800/m
Other expenses: -$3,000/m
Leftover savings each month: ~$5,000!!
How are you investing your excess savings each month?
A bit more context, my wife works also – that’s why our monthly savings is higher, it includes her income too. We have 3 kids, rent currently, and our excess savings is all going towards a house downpayment in cash… all of it right now.
Biggest “craft beer equivalent” splurge:
$3 kombucha drinks. My wife loves to eat out – a prepared meal she doesn’t have to cook is a dream come true for her.
Best savings hack/advice:
Automate and forget. The less I focus on my money, the happier I am. I have all my bills on autopay, and just monitor when I see the statement come in the email or on the credit card. My top automation would be for trash, water, electricity and internet bills. These are basic essentials these days and not likely to be canceled each month. Monitoring them each month can be helpful, especially during the summer/winter peak season for heating, and electricity, but since you’re not going to cancel, just have it on autopay. It’s always possible to call for a discrepancy or shop around for another internet provider if the cost keeps creeping up.
What’s your biggest money challenge right now?
Saving for a downpayment right now is our #1 goal. We figured with these mortgage interest rates, having more cash to offset a house purchase could be very helpful. Eventually we’d like to transition more into retirement accounts but for now pretty strong in cash.
Recent money win and how did you celebrate?
Hitting $200K savings in cash for house downpayment. We got some take out food at a place we enjoy.
**We share these money profiles because some of the best money hacks and advice comes from YOU, the community… If you’re up for being featured, we’d love to hear from you –> fill out the How You Money form here (we only post once you give permission!!)**
That’s it for now. Cheers to a great week ahead, and travel safe for those on the road next week!!
Best friends out 🍻
Ps. We love hearing from you! If we’ve sparked any questions or ideas from these newsletters or podcast, feel free to reply to us with a voice memo (here’s how). We’ll do our best to answer it on an upcoming Ask HTM episode! People love hearing from other members of the community —> aka YOU!
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