So, you hear people talk about “Good Hair Days,” I wanted to share with you all my “Good Money Day.” No, I didn’t become a millionaire over night or anything like that, but I felt really good about some simple money moves that I made.
I woke up Saturday and spent about three hours on my finances. I normally try to do that once a week, but these last few weeks (ok, months) have been outright batty for me. I’ve had major work deadlines plus a work trip. I am very thankful for the work, but being a Frugalista is a lifestyle. There’s no sense in making money if you are too busy to manage it properly. You have to do both: earn an income and manage your income wisely. If I’m not doing both, I am not at peace.
Last Saturday was the first day that I’ve been able to get back to my routine. Once you move along with your frugality mission, you really need to do certain things to feel comfortable. For me, I have to know that I am handling all of my financial business.
How Natalie Got Her Financial Groove Back:
1) Paid every bill. I normally pay my bills once I get them in my mail, but I let a few stack up. I almost broke out in a rash. I can not let my bills linger, especially because I am too busy to sit down and pay them. There is no excuse for being late with a payment, if you have the money to make the payment. I can never be that busy. So the cell, cable and power company will be very happy with me.
2) Since April, my bank has charged wrongly a $15 fee on my account. I meant to tackle this last month, but again, my work deadlines have been bonkers. So I called the bank to inquire about the $30 worth of fees on my account. The customer service representative said that they were erroneous and took them off. He was really kind and I didn’t have to act rude to get my money back. Thirty dollars may not seem like a lot, but it’s a lot to me. Thirty dollars is quite a chunk of my weekly grocery bill.
3) In March, I bought an adorable $18 black blazer on clearance. One day, I wanted to wear the blazer, only to discover that the sales associate had forgotten to take of that awful plastic alarm tag. Ugh! I didn’t have the receipt anymore for the jacket. Bad business. So I went to the store and asked for the alarm tag to be removed. Of course the sales associate said she couldn’t remove it without the receipt. I asked for her manager. The manager said he couldn’t remove it without the receipt. So, I asked him for the number to the corporate headquarter of this company. Only then, did he agree to remove the alarm tag. Sometimes it pays to announce that you plan to go higher. I don’t care that I only spent $18 on the blazer. If it has a big dumb plastic tag on it, it’s like $18 wasted. And I’m not into wasting money these days. Frugalista victory!
4) I filed expense reports. The pre-Frugalista Natalie has wasted thousands, and yes, I do mean thousands, by not filing expense reports in a timely manner. I had expense reports from my work trip that were almost a week old, and I needed to sit down, gather the receipts, run the numbers and send them off so that I can get repaid. I try to file my work receipts the next day after a trip, but um…yeah, not so much this time. Filing them lifted a weight off my shoulders.
5) I bought a calculator and a plastic coupon/receipt organizer. Please don’t think that I’ve turned into a granny. I misplace receipts (see above entries #3 and #4). I itemize my taxes now, so I want to have perfect records. I know I have a calculator on my cell phone and there are calculators on the web, but I wanted one that I didn’t have to “point and click” to use. I spent a total of $6 on that and that was well money spent. The organizer fits perfectly in my purse. Hurrah!
Whew! None of these feats are earth shattering, but I am a better person for having done them.
Ok, please tell me what you’ve done to have a “Good Money Day?” Where have you saved? Where have you spent wisely? Do you check your bank for erroneous fees?