How to Make the Best Gadget Purchase Every Time

Here at Pepperrific, we love saving money. There are plenty of ways to save money on anything from everyday purchases to the latest gadgets. You just have to know how (and where) to get the best deals and how to make good purchase decisions.

When it comes to buying new gadgets, a part of making good purchase decisions is knowing which gadget to buy. Picking up the wrong smartphone or a kitchen appliance that doesn’t suit your needs is the kind of expensive mistakes you don’t want to make.

That is why in this article, we are going to discuss the best tips and tricks that will help you make the best gadget purchase every time. Let’s get started, shall we?

Start with Your Needs

You don’t have to buy the latest and greatest gadget every time. Doing so often means spending more money than you should on features you don’t really need. It is much better to take the time to understand what you personally need from a gadget before searching for options to look into.

Another important thing to keep in mind is your budget. You need to understand how much you can afford to spend on the gadget. This will help limit your options to gadgets you can actually afford, eliminating the temptation to go with something “slightly” more expensive altogether.

Read Reviews

Reviews, especially those found in the Review section of e-commerce sites, are often biased. They are based on the personal experience of each customer or the reviewers’ points of view. That said, there are a lot of things you can learn about the gadgets you want to buy from reading reviews.

Some sources are more reliable than the others. Graded Reviews, for example, is famous for its reviews of kitchen gadgets and home appliances. There are a lot of great insights you can get from browsing this site alone.

Check the Return Policy

Shopping for gadgets today – especially when you shop online – is a lot easier than you think. Most stores have display units that you can try, while online retailers offer up to a 90-day money back guarantee. Before hitting that Checkout button, be sure to understand the return policy carefully.

Being able to return the items that don’t meet your expectations is a huge plus. If the smart coffee maker you purchase isn’t working well with your Google Home, for example, you can choose to return the item and exchange it for something else.

Search for Deals

There is always a discount or special offer you can use; always. You just have to find the right coupon code to use before finalizing your purchase decision. Sites that specialize in coupon codes are definitely worth a visit; review sites often give away discounts and exclusive coupons too.

You never have to pay the full price for a gadget. If there isn’t any discount to benefit from, you will be able to find bonuses, freebies, cashbacks, and other deals from retailers. This is how you really save and still get the best gadgets you need.

Four Money-Saving Ideas for Delicious Dishes

Cooking delicious meals for you and your family takes more time – and money – than many realize. Not only do you have to spend time picking up the ingredients from the supermarket, but you also have to spend time in the kitchen bringing it to life. Such is the life of any home-maker!

While reducing the amount of time spent slaving away in the kitchen may not always be so easy, there are plenty of ways to reduce the amount spent on each meal. To all of you home chefs out there who are willing to roll up your sleeves and get creative, there are many unique ways to cook without breaking the bank.

Today, we’ll review four great ideas that can save you big money while still producing delectable dishes.

Go with the Casserole

One of the best ways to save money on cooking expenses is to find ways to create meals that can be enjoyed over and over again. Generally, cooking in bulk helps save money and can take a load off of you having to cook multiple meals each day.

One of the best examples is a casserole or hot-dish. Casseroles can be made from just about anything, meaning you already have many or all of the delicious ingredients you need in the kitchen. They also are the perfect item to cook when wanting to prepare something that’ll keep feeding the family for at least a couple of days.

There are literally thousands of casseroles and hot-dish recipes available online: check out this low-cost ham and egg casserole dish from pocketchangegourmet.com.

Use a Crock Pot

One of the easiest ways to simplify the cooking process while saving money is by using slow-cookers, pressure cookers and/or crock pots to prepare meals. With a crock pot, you can cook up virtually any dish imaginable.

Perfect for those who work full-time, a crock pot can be used to slowly cook meals to perfection while away from the house. Virtually any meat and vegetable combination can be used to cook healthy, inexpensive meals with minimal work.

One hot item on the market now is The Instant Pot, which uses a combination of slow-cooking and pressure cooking to generate crock pot-like results in a fraction of the time.

Replace Meat with Other Proteins

One of the most expensive ingredients in any meal is meat. Those who have transitioned fully to a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle will tell you that preparing meals at home without meat significantly cut their grocery bills.

You don’t have to completely eliminate meat in order to enjoy savings, however. Protein is absolutely needed in a healthy meal, and you can find a variety of sources for it. From eggs and beans to peanut butter and various cheeses, focus on recipes that are filling but reduce or eliminate the amount of meat needed.

Buy in Bulk

It may seem like very broad advice, but shopping for groceries in bulk from one of many wholesale outlets or stores like Costco can help save huge sums when making delicious dishes. Whether you’re buying enough meat to last for one month or freezing huge blocks of cheese to use later, buying all of your basic ingredients in bulk can save as much as one-third of your total grocery bill.

Ultimately, saving money doesn’t mean ditching the delicious dishes you love. You can make a meal plan work on virtually any budget – as long as you’re willing to put in a little elbow grease. Whether it’s buying in bulk, using slow cookers, replacing meat with other proteins or cooking big dishes that use affordable ingredients, put these tips to work for you and start saving today!

How to Afford to Take a Masters in Health Administration

Education is worth the investment, but it’s not free and takes time to be affordable. There are several different ways to pay for an Online Masters in Health Administration degree course which we’d like to explore in this blog post. The MHA degree online is an ideal solution for career-minded professionals who are willing to allocate some of their free time to its pursuit.

Here are several approaches on how to pay for a degree and get a significant return on your educational and time investment during your career.

Put Together Some Savings

While you may or may not have been successful at putting together some savings from your salary before, it all comes down to having a motivating goal that’s personally meaningful to you. In which case, cutting back on the cable TV package, adjusting your number of restaurant trips per month and doing away with the gym membership for jogs around the park doesn’t seem like much of a sacrifice any longer.

Put together a spreadsheet with the total cost of the course, enter the amount you can save every paycheck and calculate how many months it will take to save the money to pay for the degree in cash. Then do what you can to either reduce your expenses to save more, add a second job or get busy with a side hustle or two.

Side Hustles

Side hustles are all about coming up with mini businesses that can make money in the short to medium term with limited upfront investment. In most cases, there is still some capital required to get started, but you can prioritize the ideas that show promise and also are free or close to free to start.

Take out a piece of paper and a pen, and brainstorm the different ways you can think to start a side hustle. Perhaps it’s something you know how to do that you can offer as a service locally in the evenings or on the weekend? What if you developed a website to promote products through reviews to earn commission? Or become a teacher to younger students who need to learn new skills. There are many different possible side hustle projects. Find the one(s) that fit your personality and skill set and get started.

Take on a Second Job

A second job can be anything that brings quick income in the door that can double or triple your savings rate. Delivering pizzas is one job, doing odd jobs for people on the weekends or working as a handyperson to fill in for people on the weekend is another thing you can do.

The big difference with a second job is that you’ve already covered all your living expenses, so other than any additional transportation or clothing expenses, the net proceeds are yours to save up. While it’s difficult to juggle two jobs and you might have to keep it separate from your main employer, it can make the difference between getting ahead with your education or having to put aside the dream of advancement.

Affording further education is never easy. You can take out a student loan if you can qualify, but it will come with interest added on top and it’s not always the best option. If you can find a way to fund it yourself without relying on a clean credit history to pass a loan application, that’s likely to be the best move even if it takes you a little longer to get there. Then you’re able to study without the added pressure of another debt to pay later.

4 Innovative Ways to Supplement Your Income

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Is money, that is, not having enough of it, negatively impacting your life? It’s easy to fall behind on monthly bills. As dunning notices collect in your mailbox you can quickly fall into a depressed state as you worry about what could happen if you can’t pay your auto loans, mortgage or utilities.

Even with a full-time job, you can end up short the money you need to make it through the month. Bringing in a supplemental income while you keep your day job can be a lifesaver for anyone who can’t quite make ends meet. Whether you need to get your head above water or just need some extra money to enjoy a vacation or buy your kids new clothes, there are ways to bring in that extra cash. Take a look at these four innovative ways to supplement your income and find out if any of them are right for you.

1. Start a Dog Walking Service

This is a side gig that works perfectly with most people’s work schedules. If you have a 9:00 am start time, why not get up a couple of hours earlier to walk the neighborhood dogs? You can make between $6 and $12 per hour per dog. Manage to get three or four clients, and you could bring in an extra $500 to $1000 per month working early mornings and after you get home from work.

2. Hold Yard Sales

I know, this sounds more like a one-off solution to your money problems, but there are ways to get a steady supply of merchandise for a weekly event that could make you hundreds of dollars extra per month. Just start scouring your local thrift stores for great deals on used appliances, kid’s snow gear or shoes and anything else that looks like you could sell it at a tidy profit. Sure, this idea requires that you invest some cash upfront. But if you have an eye for bargains, it could be a fantastic opportunity to supplement your income.

3. Start a Sales Business in Your Spare Time

Door to door sales is an old American tradition, but there are many incredible success stories about people who made it big. While other companies will expect you to figure it out by yourself, Amway Education is a program that starts off with 26 courses and teaches you what you need to know about starting and running a business. You’ll have a mentor to guide you through the beginning stages and can complete the course from your home. It could be the ticket to a career that pays better than your current job!

4. Be an Online Juror

The proliferation of the internet into every part of our lives combined with trial attorneys looking for people to weigh in on cases that may not have been presented to a judge equals an opportunity to earn good money. The money you get paid ranges from $20 to $60 for up to an hour of work.

You can get paid well for reviewing legal cases online, answering a questionnaire and then your feedback is used by attorneys to discover the strengths and weaknesses of a case.

 

Top Money Saving Tips for Parents

There’s no two ways about it, being a parent can get really expensive. Even though we all know of this, surprisingly few of us seem to be properly prepared for it when the time comes. It is never too early to start budgeting for having a family and the sooner you prepare the easier it will be.

However, it is also true that it is never too late to start thinking about your family budget. Managing money isn’t a mystical skill that many of our friends seem to possess and we don’t, it is simply a matter of making the effort and dedicating yourself to your goal.

The best ways of saving money are the small things, the easy to do things, the things that you will barely notice if you start doing differently. For example, turning off lights when you leave a room, these small and easy savings will all add up a lot quicker than you might think.

In this article we take a look at some of the most effective, yet easiest to implement, things that you can do to start saving money for your family.

Make A Budget

Budgeting is the most important aspect of saving money. You will need to identify how much money you need to spend each week and then you will have an idea of how much money you have to play around with. Of course, it is up to you what percentage of the excess money you have that you’ll want to save, the more you can put away, the faster it will build.

Identify Your Goals

Be honest with yourself about the savings that you want to make and the savings that you think you are capable of making. You don’t want to set yourself up with an impossible task, it is therefore important that you are realistic and honest in your budgeting and planning. Set goals that you are confident you can stick to.

Free Samples

Free samples are an excellent way of scoring some free stuff and there is now a plethora of options for obtaining samples. Using the internet, it is possible to find a source for a sample of just about anything. For example, check out SampleStuff.com to trial Spotify Premium for free!

Coupons

Coupons are a tried and tested method of making some great savings, there are a number of places where you can find coupons, traditionally they have been cut from magazines and newspapers, however these days the internet is probably a more reliable source.

Turn Things Off

This is one of the simplest yet most effective ways of making some serious savings. Whenever we leave the lights, or electronic devices switched on when they don’t need to be, we are paying needlessly for the privilege. Encourage your kids and spouse to also switch things off whenever they leave a room.

Saving money for your household carries with it a number of obvious advantages but the best part is that it will massively reduce the amount of stress and worry in your day to day life. For most people it is financial woes that cause the most stress and anxiety, having access to savings greatly reduces this.

Top 5 Ways You Can Get the Best Deals

No matter who you are or where you come from, everyone is on the lookout for a great deal. You don’t want to spend a lot of money on something you can get somewhere else cheaper. Many big companies know this, so they will use various ways to entice you to buy their products, even if it means giving a discount.

Here are a few tips on how you can get a great deal on almost anything if you know where to look.

Find Those Coupons

One of the best ways to get a deal is with coupons, and it isn’t as hard as it used to be. Before the internet, you have to rely on newspapers, magazines or your mail to be able to get coupons. Now, however, you can search for whatever coupon you need on the internet.

There are thousands of coupons out there for you to use on many different products, so finding the one you want is easy. You can download them and print them off, or some have a bar code that you can get scanned straight from your phone.

Wait to Checkout Online

If you like to use online shopping to buy your bargains, then why not try to get a voucher or coupon by waiting a little while. Next time you are shopping at your favorite online store, try to place what you want in the basket, then leave it in there for a day or two.

Some stores will send you an email asking if you want to buy your products and offer a discount as a result. It may not always work, but it is worth a try just to see if it will.

Discount Stores

In recent years there has been a big boom in the discount stores. Now, you can find these types of business both online and in the street. Online stores such as Deal Wiki, offer wiki deals that have discounted prices on various items.

You are often able to pick up a good bargain if you use them often as you can see the latest deals and get in there first. These types of business are great for birthday presents and other celebration gifts.

Gift Card Discounts

You might think gift cards are only useful as presents or when you’re on holiday, however, they can also be great for discounts. There are many sites out there that offer gift cards at a reduced price, or you may be able to pick them up from online discount stores.

The good thing about them is that you will then in effect, be getting a discount on the things you purchase with the gift card. You could also give them as presents and save a little money as well.

There are many ways that you can look and find those deals, all you need is to keep looking out for those offers. There are even forum sites that will tell people where they can find those coupons and deals.

 

13 Driving Tactics to Save Fuel (Infographic)

In this crazy world, it’s comforting to know that there still are some things we have control over.  Here’s how we can save on fuel costs:
Courtesy of: On Stride

Top 11 Tips for Buying Your First Investment Property

If you are thinking about investing in property, you certainly won’t be the last person to do so. Property investment can be incredibly lucrative, and some of the world’s wealthiest people have made their fortune through this method. However, as is the case with any investment, you should never dive straight in. You need to be well versed first, and that is exactly what this article is all about. Read on to discover some top tips for anyone that is thinking about buying their first investment property.

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  1. Make sure property is the right type of investment – Property investment is not right for everyone, just as stock buying is not right for everyone. It is important to ensure that this is the sort of investment that suits your lifestyle, as well as your risk profile. Don’t forget that you are going to need money spare to deal with any maintenance issues, and that it will be your responsibility to ensure any repairs are dealt with immediately. Of course, the only exception is if you decide to make the most of the services of a property manager. If you do not have any spare cash and you don’t want the responsibilities that come with being a landlord, it may be wise to consider another option. Make sure you are fully aware of what property investment entails before you make any decision.
  2. Be thorough – Don’t be anything less than thorough. Why is the vendor selling? Is the property livable from the perspective of a tenant? Have you had relevant inspections done? Being thorough is a necessity if you are going to turn property investment into a successful venture for you.
  3. Manage your cashflow – Poor cash flow management can see your days as an investor end quicker than you can say the word profit. It can be difficult to understand all the costs associated with acquiring and holding a property. This is why it is beneficial to seek the advice of a professional. They will help you to understand all of the costs entailed, so you can determine if it is viable. Also, don’t forget that you should make sure you have around 10% of the property’s value spare to cover the likes of management and maintenance fees, insurance, and land taxes.
  4. Pay down debt first – A lot of investors carry debt as part of their investment portfolio, but if you aren’t an experienced investor, this is not advised. Getting on the property ladder when you have many other debts is usually not the way to go. Get your finances in check before you go down this route.
  5. You must be patient – Far too many people get involved in property investment because they hope that they are going to become a millionaire overnight. Property investment is most certainly not a quick fix to your monetary problems. It is an approach that requires persistence and patience, and a long-term strategy is the only way to go about it.
  6. Find the right location – Your choice of location can make or break you when it comes to an investment property. Look for somewhere that has plenty of amenities, a growing job market, low crime rates, a decent school district, and low property taxes. You need somewhere that is in demand. The last thing you want is for your property to sit empty because you have chosen an unpopular area.
  7. Determine how much of a down payment you will need – A lot of people underestimate the amount of money they will need for a deposit when it comes to investment properties. They assume that they will only need around five per cent, as this is the down payment they made when they bought the home they currently live in. Unfortunately, it is not that easy. You will typically need at least 20 per cent for an investment property, especially as mortgage insurance is not available for rental properties.
  8. You need to have a plan – You know what they say; when you fail to plan, you plan to fail. It may be a cliché, but it is true. If you plan to start a property portfolio, and you don’t have a plan of attack, you are going to take a wrong turn, as you have not mapped out where you are going and how you are going to get there.
  9. Assess all of your options – A lot of people are so excited about buying their first investment property, and this can lead them to making rash decisions that they have not really thought through. It is important that you carefully assess all of the options that are available to you, so you can be sure that you make the best decision for your situation specifically. You can read this guide to buying resale or subsale property. It is a good place to get started. Once you have gone over that option, why not take a look at the likes of commercial property? There are many different avenues you can go down to make your investment property work.
  10. Be cautious of high interest rates – You may think that the cost of borrowing money is low at this present moment, but it is important to factor in the interest rate. After all, the interest rate on a property for investment will be higher. Remember, there is no point in investing in property if the mortgage payments are going to eat into your monthly profits too heavily.
  11. Don’t let your heart dictate – Last but not least, your heart should never rule over your head when it comes to buying an investment property. When buying a home, only about 10% of your decision is based on logic, and the rest is based on emotion. This is your home, though, so this is understandable. However, when investing, your heart should never rule your buying decision. Rather than negotiating the best price and outcome for your investment objectives, you will be more likely to over-capitalise on your purchase because you will let your emotions cloud your judgment.

 

3 Surefire Ways To Get Your Security Deposit Back

Do you remember when you set your eyes on your unfurnished apartment a year ago? Crisp white walls, ambient lighting, and a great terrace? You knew that this would make a great pad for the next twelve months, so you signed the lease, handed over your security deposit and picked up the keys. One year down the line and there is a little bit of wear and tear. Or so you think. The carpet in the hallway did have that little stain on it prior to you moving in, didn’t it? If you are ending your lease any time soon, you’ll want to read on to make sure you maximise your chances of getting back your security deposit from your landlord.

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Now, before we tar all landlords with the same brush, it goes without saying that most are fair and understand that there will be general wear and tear after having a tenant in their property for twelve months. Others are not so honourable. They seem pleasant enough, popping a card through your mailbox at Christmas and sending you a text every so often to make sure all is ok. Don’t be lulled into a false sense of security. Remember, they are your landlord, and you are part of their business.

 

  1. Get Snap Happy

 

On move-in day, take photos of absolutely everything and make sure they are timestamped. Pay particular attention to anything that may be slightly damaged or worn. When you hand back the keys, if the landlord suggests that you stump up for the cracked tile in the bathroom you can whip out your photographic evidence to prove your innocence.

 

  1. Call In The Pros

 

There is absolutely no way you started your tenancy with a grease laden oven. Now it’s time to put on the gloves, mask, and goggles and get the heavy duty industrial oven cleaner out. If that doesn’t float your boat, consider paying for professional end of lease cleaning. For a fee, these experts come into your rental home and, seemingly like magic, they return your pad to its former state of cleanliness. Clean carpets, a sparkling bathroom, and a pruned terrace. There’s no way the landlord will be charging you for cleaning.

 

  1. Ban The Parties

 

If you are a night owl and have a tendency to enjoy your wild nights, make sure you party somewhere else. Inviting friends over may seem a good idea at the time but, if there is any chance the evening could turn into a raucous affair, don’t do it. You don’t want to have to explain the humiliating tale of how your best mate managed to get a cigarette burn in the curtains in your no smoking rental.

 

Renting gives you freedom, not tying you down to one area of the country and leaving you free to move on when you’re ready. Be sensible, get yourself an inventory, get help from the pros when you need it, and you shouldn’t have any issues when it comes to getting back what is rightfully yours when you say goodbye to your humble abode.

4 Money Saving Tips to Keep Your Vacation Affordable

The thing about going on vacation is that it’s a balance. You want to mix inexpensive activities with more expensive ones to blend the daily cost of being on vacation. A decadent life is nice in theory, but in reality, it’s not affordable for most people unless your last name is Kardashian!

Here are four tips for saving money before and during your next vacation.

Saving Money on Airlines

When booking in advance, there are considerable savings to be made. Whether it’s discounted pricing or special early bird offers, it’s possible to knock sometimes hundreds of dollars off the cost of a couple of flights. Also, depending how light you pack, when there’s an option of flying direct or taking connecting flights with a bit of wait time in the airport lounge, weigh up the pros and cons with your partner.

In most cases, we all fail to travel light when it comes to travel. We pack too many bags and stuff them to the brim with a myriad of possessions we cannot stand to leave at home. Airlines are very restrictive when it comes to the number of bags and the weight of the luggage you can bring with you. Oversized bags and extra pounds of luggage bring surcharges that add up fast.

Cutting the Cost of Car Rentals

When leaving your car at home and flying into your destination, there are various ways to save when renting your transportation. It’s not always necessary to match the rental car to the size and class type of your own vehicle. Do you really need that much car for a two-week vacation?

Consider which days you’ll need a car and plan to schedule those days consecutively to reduce the total number of rental days. Some credit card providers insure you for rental cars when paying the cost with their card. Check this out before you fly to save on insurance. And, check whether free child/baby seats are provided by the rental company or whether you should bring yours along. Also, only fill up the gas for what you need and don’t use the fill up service with the company because they’ll fill the tank up to full whether you require it or not. Also, look for discount coupons online.

Be Choosy About Tourist Traps

Every city and town has its tourist traps. Not every tourist activity is worth the price of admission. Quite often, walking around on your own tour is free and just as interesting as the guided ones when you’ve done your research ahead of time. Google Maps is your friend (you can download an offline map of the area). A travel guide that covers the city is also a useful thing to carry with you and most are available in digital versions accessible on your smartphone or tablet during your visit.

Splurge Where There’s Value to You

If you’re someone who places a high significance on where you stay during a vacation, then the choice of accommodations is key. A place like WhiteBuffaloClub.com in Jackson Hole has its own USDA Steak house, a full fitness center, and wireless internet access. It’s the kind of place that is a delight to visit.

Saving money when booking a vacation and during your time away is all about being smart. Clever planning ahead of time, and picking and choosing what is important when you’re there, is key. Most things have a price, but not everything offers you value. Be selective.