The Magic Number: 8% Investment Returns

8% ReturnsPerhaps the single question I’ve been asked the most in relation to this blog has been, “Where in the world is it possible to get 8% returns on my investments?!”

It’s true, I’ve mentioned this figure multiple times in the past and have even referenced it as a benchmark for healthy investment returns. So for anyone who’s ecstatic to get a 2% interest rate on his or her savings account, 8% certainly seems an impossible reach and would no doubt raise the same question everyone’s been asking. So while there aren’t any investments that will GUARANTEE an 8% return, there certainly are some that have great PROBABILITY of reaching it.  I’ll share a few of them later in this post.

But first, we need to build a little foundation. [Read more...]

Is Your Cellphone Plan Ripping You Off?

Cellphones (read: smartphones) and the required service plans that go alongside them have, in recent times, shifted from being a “discretionary” expense to a “survival necessity” on the same level as food, water, and shelter for many people.  I admire those who continue their happy existence without the need for smartphones, but this post is for the rest of us who get panic attacks whenever we find out we left the house without our phones.  How can we save the crumbs when it comes to our phones and their service plans?

We got a number of curious inquiries following our recent post on getting iPhones half off, which can be viewed as a first part to this post.  I won’t be able to answer all the questions here, but I feel like there are at least a few follow-up questions that need to be addressed: Such as 1) How is $300 a good price for an iPhone when I can get a new one for $199 with my current carrier?  And 2) How is it possible to get an “all-you-can-eat” cellphone service plan for only $20/month?  And 3) Are we actually indentured servants without realizing it?

Fortunately, the answers to these questions are all related. [Read more...]

A Random Crumb #2: Random Facts

Random Crumb - FactsEarlier this week we were nominated for the Versatile Blogger Award by May from Messy Money and Laurie from The Frugal Farmer. (Thanks, ladies!) This award is similar to the Liebster Award, where we share some random facts about ourselves and then nominate any other bloggers to pay it forward.

For those of our readers who aren’t familiar with the strange rituals of the blogosphere and wonder what’s with all the lovey-dovey cross-promotion between bloggers, the reason is because it’s a way to develop links, community, readership, and new ideas. It’s the equivalent of looking out for your neighbor in real life.

So without further ado, here are some random facts about us. In keeping with the spirit of our “Random Crumb” column, these are random facts that somehow relate to saving or wasting money. [Read more...]

Why We Don’t Buy Costco Membership

Costco MembershipA question we get a lot here at Saving the Crumbs is: “Do you think Costco membership is worth it?” It’s a valid question since buying wholesale definitely jives with the crumb saver mentality but putting down $55 (our month’s food budget) just to be part of a club makes me stop to consider how much savings we’d actually pocket in the end.

I’ll admit that Costco definitely has some great deals and awesome merchandise. However, don’t let the $80 off the Dyson vacuum cleaner (when you don’t need one), or the amazing deal on the patio furniture (when you don’t have a deck), or even all the tempting samples they lure you with, sway you from a good, hard analysis of whether Costco membership is the right decision for you. [Read more...]

How Much Do I Have to Earn to Be Rich?

How Much Do I Have to Earn to be Rich?In my freshman year of high school, I got my first paying job. I was a TA (teacher’s assistant) for the junior high school computer lab. It was a minimum wage job paying $5.25 an hour, and as every self-respecting high school kid would’ve done, I added up the hours that I needed to work in order to afford certain items on my wish list. Very quickly I realized how much faster I would be able to afford that latest video game or those new basketball shoes IF ONLY I MADE MORE MONEY!

At this point in my life, I thought of wealth the way most of the world thinks of it:  I exchange my time in the form of work for money, and I earn more money either by A) working more hours, or B) getting paid more per unit of time, or C) doing both.  So goes the proverbial “rat race” to “maximize earning potential” because the more I EARN, the RICHER I am.  Strive to get paid more.  This is the path to financial riches, right?

Well…not quite… [Read more...]

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