June 9: Best from the blogosphereJune 9, 2014
By Sheryl Smolkin
There is nothing I love better than planning a vacation or two or three. At the moment we have two weeks in our Muskoka fractional ownership cottage coming up; a week at Disneyworld with our granddaughter in September; and I’m working on the arrangements for a family vacation somewhere warm in February.
So with summer vacations coming up for many families, I pulled together a series of posts both old and new, with a vacation theme.
Krystal Yee explains how she is saving money and travel rewards points for a European vacation this fall and prioritizing her travel plans. She is comfortable that nearer term trips to Edmonton and Las Vegas are off the table because her long term goal is worth saving for.
Peggy Goldman, President of Friendly Planet Travel offers 9 Great Tips For Budget-Conscious Travelers. Choosing a hotel with breakfast, avoiding baggage fees at all cost and selecting a credit card without foreign conversion fees are all good suggestions.
Several years ago on Brighter Life, Helen Burnett-Nichols weighed the pros and cons of buying a fraction of a vacation home. She says because most people don’t use their cottages all year it may be difficult to justify full time cottage ownership. Shared ownership means you have the property for 4 or 5 weeks a year and when you arrive it’s like walking into a “no upkeep resort.” However ongoing maintenance costs will increase and the re-sale market for fractional units is often limited.
In a more recent Brighter Life blog, Brenda Spiering gives some interesting suggestions for preventing family cottage feuds. She says the best way to decide how to pass on the family cottage to the next generation is to talk to your family and consult a financial advisor. Depending on your needs, he or she can direct you to other professionals, such as an estate-planning lawyer or tax accountant.
And don’t forget the many vacation destinations close to home. Tourism Saskatchewan’s Travel Tales Blog gives you updates on things to see and do, places to stay and eat, and exciting year-around experiences available in Saskatchewan, all only a few mouse clicks away.
Do you follow blogs with terrific ideas for saving money that haven’t been mentioned in our weekly “Best from the blogosphere?” Share the information with us on http://wp.me/P1YR2T-JR and your name will be entered in a quarterly draw for a gift card.
Apr 14: Best from the blogosphereApril 14, 2014
By Sheryl Smolkin
With spring finally in the air, high school and university students are pounding the pavement looking for work.
The pros and cons of unpaid internships have been all over the news lately with prominent publications cancelling illegal internships that were little more than free labour. On his blog youth and work Toronto lawyer Andrew Langille writes about The Growing Influence of Canada’s Intern Rights Movement.
Talentegg’s Sidneyeve Matrix says instead of waiting for opportunity to knock, students should get out there and create their own career luck. She gives four DIY opportunities that give young people ways to take the initiative and open doors for themselves.
Spring is also the time when many homes are bought and sold. When you apply for a mortgage, the bank will probably try to sell you mortgage insurance. Brighter Life blogger Helen Burnett-Nichols considers whether mortgage insurance or increasing life insurance will give you the best protection.
Robb Engen (Boomer and Echo) also has a new blog called Earn Save Grow. It is still very much a personal finance site, but it focuses less on frugality and more on topics like how to increase your income, and how to save wisely in the areas that impact your finances the most. Check out his latest post Long term outlook: Where do you see your finances in 20 years?
And last but not least, if you use a Keurig or other one cup coffee maker with disposable K-cups or pods you don’t even have to do the math to know you are over-paying for the small amount of coffee contained in the excessive packaging.
But in case you never gave the subject any serious thought, check out Squawkfox where Kerry K. Taylor calculates that if you use Starbucks French Roast Ground Coffee in the K-cup mini reusable filter it only costs 26 cents per cup, while using a K-cup will ratchet the cost up to 67 cents for eight ounces of java.
Do you follow blogs with terrific ideas for saving money that haven’t been mentioned in our weekly “Best from the blogosphere. Share the information with us on http://wp.me/P1YR2T-JR and your name will be entered in a quarterly draw for a gift card.