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US Bank Account Comparison For Canadians

US bank account comparison for CanadiansIf you have to deal with US currency on a semi-regular basis, then you know how quickly currency conversion costs can eat into your money! Your credit card charges you at least 2.5% off the top whenever you make a purchase in US dollars and the banks typically charge even more than that for buying US currency unless it is a large volume transaction. Worse still, if you ever get paid in US dollars, then you can wind up converting money to Canadian dollars when you receive payment and then BACK into US dollars when making a USD purchase. You are also at the mercy of ever-fluctuating exchange rates if you don’t have a US dollar bank account.

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Running this website, I do occasionally receive advertising or affiliate payments in USD so I frequently find myself in costly currency conversion situations and it’s starting to get really expensive. I always knew US dollar bank accounts were out there and I had done some preliminary research surrounding them, but I’m getting much more serious about it these days and I plan to open a US bank account at a Canadian bank very soon to reduce these currency exchange costs.

How A US Dollar Bank Account Reduces Currency Exchange Costs

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How To Save Money By Using Coupons

How to save money by using coupons

This is a guest post by Young And Thrifty, one of my favourite bloggers that I read religiously whenever she publishes something new! She’s trying to “save generation Y” by writing her blog on personal finance for beginners like her sisters who don’t have a clue about how to manage their finances. So far I’d say she’s doing a fantastic job!

There's no secret to it, really. The trick is to get the coupons, sort them, and then use them when the items matching the coupons go on sale. Some advance planning is necessary because it usually takes a few business days for coupons requested online to be mailed out to you.

So, how does one sort all of these coupons anyway? I recently created a few envelopes that I have labeled “Food” and “Household” to start off. It certainly helps to keep things organized when you are in a pinch and rummaging around for the right coupon. In order for it to work, you need to keep your coupon stash handy, especially when you're going out and buying groceries. The other secret is to try and use coupons at stores where you can collect points (a shining example - Shoppers Drug Mart Optimum points). I learned recently that even though you spend $5.99 on toilet paper and you have a $1.00 coupon off, the value you get for earning points is still $5.99! That means on those 20x the points days at Shoppers you don’t actually have to spend a full $50 out of pocket to get $50 worth of points. This, my friends, is double dipping and it is indeed a good thing.

Online Coupon Websites Where You Can Request Coupons By Mail

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Save Money On Your Groceries: “Money In Your Pocket” Review

Save Money On Groceries Have you ever been frustrated at the high cost of your grocery bill? Doesn’t it seem like the cost of this essential expense just keeps rising and rising with no end in sight? Well, what if I told you it was possible to cut your grocery bill by 20%, 50%, even up to 100%? Sounds fantastic, I know! Right about now you’re thinking either: “where can I sign up?” or “where’s the catch?”.

Ok, it’s true, there is a catch – but it’s a pretty reasonable catch. The catch is you will have to do a little bit of reading and little bit of work to make it happen. The other catch is that you can end up walking out of the store having paid $0 or even having made money, but this definitely isn’t possible every time you go shopping and it is hard to achieve results that good when you’re just getting started. As you practice the art of saving money on your groceries, your savings will keep increasing until you are able to save more than 50% off your grocery bill on a regular basis!

Now that you know the stakes, I guess I better tell you how you can get started. Cassie Howard, the well-known Canadian blogger behind MrsJanuary.com, has recently released a brand new eBook called Money In Your Pocket: A Canadian Guide to Coupons, Stockpiling, and More. I have just finished reading the entire 65 page book, where she breaks down the complete process of getting huge savings on your groceries while providing additional links to a ton of useful resources to help you along. It’s a very worthwhile read, and it is my pleasure to review it and let you know what you can expect if you decide to read it yourself.

The Basics of Saving Money on Groceries – Chapter 1

The first chapter of the book is probably my favourite chapter because she covers so much ground in so few words about the basic principles you can follow to save money on your groceries and other purchases. She goes over things like how to read and use the sale flyers, menu planning, how to make a proper grocery list, retailer sales cycles (yes – sales are recurring and planned far in advance), and the basics of stocking up.

She also covers some more advanced topics like the Scanning Code of Practice (the who what??), price matching, and rain checks. Her description of price matching along with the provided links to resources on her own site actually make the thought of price matching a large number of items to save time, money, and gas a bearable one. Price matching is very intimidating to most first timers, but she actually makes it look easy and, by following her advice, chances are that it will be!

There are 17 topics in all in the first chapter and each one of them helps to provide a solid foundation for you to start saving money on your groceries. This all leads up to the biggest grocery money saver there is:

Use Coupons to Slash Your Grocery Bill – Chapter 2

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Using Freezer Cooking As A Way To Reduce Your Grocery Budget

Frozen Food

This is a guest post by Melissa, a stay at home mom to three little ones. She blogs at Mom's Plans where she shares how she and her family are learning to live a fulfilling life on less. She also shares her adventures in freezer cooking on a monthly basis.

When I had my second child two years ago, my husband and I got serious about finding ways to save money. We realized our budget had a huge leak in the food category. Because we were busy with a newborn and a four year old, we did not always plan our dinners. As a result, we often picked up food or ate expensive precooked freezer foods from the grocery store. Our lack of planning was costing us several hundred dollars a month.

I had heard about freezer cooking as a method to save money and time, but I thought the whole idea sounded like pure torture. Who wants to spend an entire day cooking ALL day, and then, when you are wiped out, spend the evening cleaning up the mess? No thanks, not for me.

My husband didn’t want to do it either because he was worried the food wouldn’t taste fresh. Neither one of us wanted to eat endless casseroles (which is what we both thought of with freezer cooking).

The Freezer Cooking Turn Around

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