Cardpool Home Depot Savings

How I Saved $217.59 in 5 Minutes


Cardpool Home Depot SavingsI hate coupons for individual products.  My brain melts when I have to find the 14.627 ounce size of pomegranate toothpaste with menthol to get half off.  The occasions on which I have tried being a coupon-clipper, it seems like I spend 4 times as long in the store, hunting for the thing that will save me $1.50.  I HATE IT!

But… I LOVE a nice discount off my OVERALL purchase.  That’s easy.  I buy what I actually want and get a discount off the top.  Done!

I have to spend over $1,000 in home improvement materials.  Here’s how I saved about $217.58 in 5 minutes.  That is over 21% off, after any discounts in price for things on sale!  Pretty sweet.

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TDAmer 100 100 Square

Updated 5% Cash Back Categories (+$100 Bonus on TWO Cards)


If you’re going to purchase something you need, and someone is willing to pay you tax-free cash for doing so – I say let them!

Check out these cash back cards. Right now, Chase and Citi sweetened the deal with $100 bonuses!

Here’s the scoop: Chase, Citi and Discover have credit cards that never have an annual fee and always give 5% cash back in certain categories.  The categories change every three months.  We can use these cards to get up to $900 cash back every year – without changing our spending habits.  That cash back money is tax free.  It adds up!

Instead of using cash, use these cards, get 5% cash back, and then pay off your bill with the cash you were going to spend in the first place.

Click on Chip’s Favorite Credit Card Offers for up-to-date deals, terms, and conditions on these cards and more..  Email me if you have any questions about which card might be right for your situation.

Here are the new categories:

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How Many Days Old Are You?


100yearoldladyWe all have a friend or relative who sends us stupid emails.  Let’s face it, I may be that person.  When I see their email in my Inbox, I reach for the delete key as I scan the subject for a last second reprieve.  I just got a diamond in the rough!

Here’s a site that will tell you how many days old you are.  I’m over 17,000 days old!!  How much would you have if you saved a measly buck every day of your life?  What if you socked away $5 or $10 per day?

If you like this idea, here’s a good place to stash your cash: EverBank’s Yield Pledge Money Market Account pays 1.40% APY guaranteed for six months on balances up to $50K. I’ve had it. FDIC & legit.

You need $1,500 to open it.  Kickstart your account with your tax refund!

Frugal Hoosier Manager

The Frugal Hoosier


Frugal Hoosier Manager

Sorry about the break in posts, I was shooting an episode of the ABC sitcom “The Middle”.  I play Clark, manager of the Frugal Hoosier grocery store.  My worlds collide.  Typecasting!  You know I had to dig deep to research this character.  I’m a Buckeye, for crying out loud.

The money tip here is a reminder for you Chase Freedom cardholders.  You have the rest of this month to get 5% cash back at grocery stores with that card.  Details in my post “A Pretty Quick $57”.

Click on Chip’s Favorite Credit Card Offers for up-to-date deals, terms, and conditions on this card. Email me if you have any questions.

Cardpool Raise Logos

How I Bought A New Computer & Sold My Old One


I needed a new computer, but I didn’t have a guy.  Do you have a guy?  I don’t have a guy.  Then it occurred to me that my union may have the hook-up to get a computer at a discount.  So I called SAG-AFTRA and voila – they’ve got a guy!  Well, a website.

Step One:  Buying Through Your Hook-Up

working advantage logo-smIf I signed into, and plugged in my union’s code, I could go to Dell and get a computer at a discount.  The price was discounted 11%.  That was $90 off.  This brought the price down to $750.

The Takeaway:  Check with your employer, union, or social organization to see if they have any such hook-up before making a large purchase.

Step Two: How To Pay For The Stuff

Cardpool+Raise LogosYou can buy gift cards to stores (including Dell) at a discount.  Raise, Cardpool, Gyft, GiftCardRescue, and MonsterGiftCard are companies that buy and sell gift cards.  They buy your unused or partially used gift cards for less than face value, and turn around and sell them for more.  It’s a profit deal.  Stores will also provide cards to the discount gift card companies too.  The discount gift card companies make a profit, even though they sell the gift cards to you at a discount – below face value.  To you, it is an automatic discount.

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William Wallace Braveheart Sm

A Pretty Quick $57


william_wallace_braveheart-smFreedom!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That was my William Wallace impression.  Your thoughts?

The Freedom card from Chase can get you a pretty quick $57 in tax free cash.  As you may know from reading this post, this quarter’s 5% category for Chase Freedom includes grocery stores.  If that card is not your #1 go-to card, get the card out of your sock drawer and pop over to your grocery store’s gift card kiosk.  Grab three Visa or MasterCard gift cards and head to the check out.  Tell the cashier you want to put $500 on each gift card.  She may think she misheard you or that you are a crazy person.  Yeah, crazy like a fox who is about to have enough extra cash to graze on some organic, free-range chickens!  Pay for the gift cards with your Chase Freedom card.

Just like that, you have maxed out the 5% quarterly spending on your Freedom card.  The $1,500 grocery store purchase will result in 7,500 Chase Ultimate Rewards points hitting your account when your statement drops.  Those points can be redeemed for $75 cash, a statement credit on your Chase Freedom bill,  or merged into another Ultimate Rewards card tally that you may have on another card (like Sapphire or Ink cards).

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Debit Card

The Debit Card I Use For 2 Things


debit_card(UPDATE: May 1, 2015 – UFB discontinued the Premiere CashBack Checking account for New Customers.  Those who have it already will be grandfathered in.  If you already have any UFBDirect account, contact them to see if you can get it.)

As a rule, I don’t use a debit card because it gives direct access to my bank account.  If someone stole my debit card info, they could access my cash.  A credit card puts a firewall between hoodlums and my money.

I make an exception with the UFB Direct debit card because it gives me 1% cash back on whatever I PAY my credit card company.  That means I will earn several hundred dollars a year paying off my credit card bill with this debit card instead of a check.  I only use this debit card to pay off my credit card bill and one other thing.

Here’s the scoop.  UFB Direct has a special VIP, double-secret, pinky-swear offer.  If

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Payusatax Logo

No Money To Pay Taxes? This May Help…


When I graduated from college, I got a job and spent every penny I had.  Hey, those skis weren’t going to take themselves down that hill.  Someone had to buy them, along with a plane ticket, lodging, and lift ticket to get them down the slopes.  That person was me.

When tax time came, I wished I had that thousand bucks to pay The Man, man.  Turns out the IRS doesn’t care about my Rossignol Make-A-Wish outreach program.  The Taxman wants to get paid – now.  Lemme tell ya.  Nothing makes you feel all grows’d up like explaining to your folks that their college graduate was actually stupid and then striking a deal with them to bail you out.

If you think you may be a little short, the IRS Approved website MAY be a good option for you. Maybe.

PayUSATax allows you to “Pay personal and business taxes by credit or debit card”. There is a convenience fee of 1.87% if you use a credit card and $2.79 if you use a debit card. Generally speaking, both of those options are a waste of money. For every $1,000 paid in taxes with a credit card, they take another $18.70 scoop in convenience fees.

But… here are 5 Ways using a card can be a GOOD idea:

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Teddy Roosevelt

Presidents’ Day & Turbo Tax


teddy-rooseveltHappy Presidents’ Day!  I’m dressing up as Teddy Roosevelt.  Who are you going to be?  Before I head out to all the parties, I’m gathering my tax info to shoot to my accountant.  That’s right.  I’m a chicken.  I’m yella.  I have a lot of plates spinning, so I have always used an accountant for my taxes.  Boy, do I know how to splurge.

Some of you have a much simpler situation and can do it all yourself.  Teddy Roosevelt would admire your rugged individualism.  He’s also an easy costume: mustache, round glasses and crazy teeth.

Here are links to download: Turbo Tax (USA) & Turbo Tax (Canada).

I Think I Love You Card2

Keith Partridge: “I Think I Owe You!”


I Think I Love You card2David Cassidy filed for bankruptcy.  According to the LA Times article, he has about $10 million in assets and about the same in debt – including $39K in credit cards, $292K in mortgage and $131K in attorney, medical and other bills.

I feel for the guy.  When I’m 64, I Think I Owe You certainly ain’t the song I wanna be singing.  Too on the nose?  How ‘bout: I Woke Up In Debt This Morning, or one of the deeper cuts, Point Me In The Direction of a Bankruptcy.  Those are the titles, Weird Al.  Go nuts!

Let’s get past the fact that I know lyrics to Partridge Family songs and get to the important stuff.  Whatever your profession, the rule is very simple:  Spend less than you bring in.  Set some aside to splurge.  Save some for when you’re no longer in demand.

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