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$30 To $60 Tax Refund For Most People

September 1st, 2006 at 07:11 pm

The IRS has announced a standard telephone tax refund for anyone that paid long distance tax after Feb. 28, 2003 and before Aug. 1, 2006. Anyone who did will be able to claim the following refunds on their 2006 Federal tax return:

$30 for someone filing a return with one exemption
$40 for someone filing with two exemptions
$50 for someone filing with three exemptions
$60 for someone filing with four or more exemptions

Tax Updates

August 19th, 2006 at 05:36 pm

There have been a large number of press releases by the IRS the last week. most of them probably have little impact on those that visit here, but here is a rundown on the off chance that one or two may apply to you. The full pres release for all of them can be found at the tax press release site:

Proposed Regulations Issued for Capitalization of Tangible Assets
New Law Expands IRA Options for Military Many Can Still Contribute for 2004 and 2005
IRS Begins Outreach to Entertainment Industry on Gift Bags Following Academy Agreement
New Directors Named for LMSB
Purchasers of Honda Hybrids Still Qualify for Tax Credit
Purchasers of Ford and Mercury Hybrids Still Qualify for Tax Credit

Hello Kitty and Nate

August 15th, 2006 at 07:59 am



People find that the Hello Kitty problem I have with my wife so humorous that I decided to start recording the different things that come up with it in a new blog aptly named Hello Kitty Hell. When I went to Las Vegas this past weekend, I thought I was going to get a break from this unfortunate situation, but good old Nate wouldn't have anything to do with it. He insisted that we look for Hello Kitty items for my wife (and as you can see in the photo, he was having way too much fun with Hello Kitty). Ahhh, with friends like this...

Pharmacy Prescription Drug Coupons

July 30th, 2006 at 09:18 pm

Flash has put together an informative article on getting discounts on prescription drugs by leveraging the specials that pharmacies offer. For those that have prescriptions that need to be filled, Pharmacy Rewards is well worth the read. I especially found the paragraph about "new" subscriptions enlightening:

Some offers are valid only on “new” prescriptions. A “new” prescription is any doctor’s written prescription, however, even if you are already on the medication. If a pharmacy coupon or offer is available, consider asking your doctor for a new written prescription rather than a refill. Manufacturer offers for free trials, samples, or other “first prescription” coupons and vouchers can usually be applied to any “new” filled prescription.

There are a lot of quality tidbits like this...

Reduce Services To Reduce Debt

July 15th, 2006 at 12:06 am

If you're in debt, finding any amount of savings you can goes a long way to getting you headed in the correct direction. Wixx has put together an article on how reducing services can help reduce debt.

It is well worth taking the time to look at the current services you pay for and figure out a way to reduce or eliminate their costs where possible.

Beef / Meat Coupons

July 14th, 2006 at 11:35 pm

Flash has put together a nice article that shows how you can get coupons for grocery store products that you wouldn't normally think you could find coupons for such as beef or other meats with examples of some of the coupons she has on hand. The key is finding wine tag coupons which often have deals for products other than the product you're actually purchasing. Eye opening stuff if you aren't deeply into coupons.

Coupon Acronyms

July 12th, 2006 at 05:32 am

Flash has put together a great list of acronyms and abbreviations that are often used by those who are couponing. If you have no idea what someone is talking about in relation to coupons, this is the page to go to in order to find out.

If you know of others that are used, please let us know so we can make it an even more comprehensive list.

Save Water In Your Garden

July 12th, 2006 at 05:28 am

contrary1 has put together an informative article on ways to conserve water while gardening which is both good for the environment and saves you money.

Lights Out Saving Game

July 12th, 2006 at 03:13 am

Wixx has put together another saving game that you can play with your family called "lights out" to help you save money.

One of the best ways to save money is to know what will motivate you to accomplish the goals you have. Making a game of it is all the better. While not exactly saving money, the lawnmower diet exhibits a lot of the things you want to look for when creating a game to play to save money.

Stay At Home Parent

July 1st, 2006 at 05:22 pm

Placed up a new article from Roger A. Sorensen who edits the Investing Page website on some issues to consider when deciding whether or not to be a stay at home parent. This is never an easy issue and while it should not be exclusively a personal financial question, money and personal finances usually are a big factor when making such decisions.

Schwan Food Contacts

June 25th, 2006 at 03:54 pm

Some more coupon and newsletter contacts courtesy of Flash - this time for Schwan Food which includes the following brands:

Asian Sensations, Edward’s Pies, Freshcetta, Larry’s Potatoes, Mrs. Smith's, Red Barron, Tony's

As mentioned before, these can be used to get coupons and special deals if you use these brands.

Volatile Stock Markets Are Good

June 24th, 2006 at 07:57 pm

I received an email article submission in response to the Investing In A Volatile Market article that was placed on our Investing page a couple of weeks ago. The title of the article is A Volatile Stock Market Is Your Dearest Friend which makes a number of points includiing:

Call it foresight, or hindsight if you want to be argumentative, but a long-term view of the Investment Process eliminates the guesswork and points pretty clearly toward a trading mentality that keys on the natural volatility of hundreds of Investment Grade Equities. During corrections, consider these simple truths:

although there are more sellers than buyers, the buyers intend to make money on their purchases
so long as everything is down, don't worry so much about the price of individual holdings
fast and steep corrections are better than the slow attrition variety
always accept even half your normal profit target while buying opportunities are plentiful
don't be in a rush to fill your portfolio, but if cash dries up before it's over, you are doing it "correctly".

Ford Hybrid Cars Qualify For Tax Credit

June 24th, 2006 at 06:23 pm

A bunch of new IRS tax press releases, most of which were job position announcements, but there was one that may be of interest to those looking to purchase a hybrid car. The IRS announced that three new Ford / Mercury hybrid vehicles had been approved for IRS energy tax credits:

Ford Escape Front WD Hybrid Model Year 2007 $2,600
Ford Escape 4 WD Hybrid Model Year 2007 $1,950
Mercury Mariner 4 WD Hybrid Model year 2007 $1,950

Unilever Coupon Contacts

June 20th, 2006 at 08:38 pm

We have another set of contact links which you can use to get coupons - this time for Unilever. That includes the following brands:

All, Axe, Ben & Jerry’s, Bertolli, Breyers, Caress, Degree, Dove, Finesse, Good Humor, Best Foods, I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter, Klondike, Knorr, Lawry's, Lever 2000, Lipton, Ponds, Popsicle, Promise, Q-Yips, Ragu, Shedd’s Country Crock, Skippys, Slim Fast, Snuggles, Suave, Thermasilk, Vaseline, Wishbone, Wisk

Money Saving Game

June 20th, 2006 at 04:47 pm

Wixx has put together a new money saving game for those who need a little motivation to make the calls to service providers that can save you a lot of money. Called the You Make The Call Game, you use a spinner to decide which service provider to call and try and get a better deal.

This is a simple way to save hundreds of dollars, if not thousands, on what you currently pay. I recently made a 15 minute call to the cable TV company for my mom and was able to save over $200. It's a great habit to get into and the worst that can happen for your call is that you pay the same amount that you're currently paying

2005 Taxes and Hurricanes

June 19th, 2006 at 11:47 pm

A couple of new tax releases from the IRS both dealing with last year's hurricanes. One was guidance on how to use the safe harbor method when claiming casualty and theft losses due to hurricanes while the other was an extension for those individuals who were living in the areas hardest hit by Hurricane Katrina last year.

While I hope that no one reading this was in the area and will need this information, it's best to pass it along in case someone does...

Organic Gardening and Costs

June 19th, 2006 at 05:16 pm

contrary1 has put together a little piece over at Frugal Gardening that shows that organic gardening is also frugal gardening when it comes right down to it:

Creating good soil is cheap
Good soil makes for healthy plant roots
Healthy plant roots make healthy plants
Healthy plants resist drought, disease & pests

This all means there is no need to purchase expensive chemicals to help the plants grow or to fight off pests which means more money in your pockets while still having a beautiful and healthy garden.

$300 In Groceries For $27 Details

June 19th, 2006 at 04:31 pm

Flash wrote an entry in her blog a little while back on how she was able to get over $300 in groceries for $27, but didn't go into detail on how she was able to manage it. She sent me an article on the details that is now live at Grocery Coupon Guide:

$330 In Grocercies For $27

Flash and I are also starting up a little experiment. Since there aren't any coupons in Japan, they are something that my wife has never used. We're going to see how much a person who has never used coupons before can save and the steps that need to be taken to achieve those savings - basically a how to for anyone that knows absolutely nothing about coupons and saving money with them. it should be an interesting process.

Tax Surveys To Be Released

June 17th, 2006 at 01:08 am

A couple more tax updates that probably have limited significance to most people, but I also wanted to place a warning out to all (hopefully most of you already know this, but a little reminder never hurts. The IRS will be sending out 50,000 surveys to try and improve taxpayer services:

Taxpayers chosen at random will be asked 25 questions about how they use IRS services and how they would like to use IRS services. The questionnaire will be mailed to the taxpayers by an IRS-approved contractor. The survey to taxpayers does not ask for any financial or personal information nor should any be divulged. Individual responses will remain confidential.

This is important because when things like this get into the news, scammers always try to take advantage and I'm sure there will be some phishing schemes that use this survey to try and steal confidential data. Be aware that if you receive a survey that asks for any of this information, it is not a real survey.

The IRS also released another press release on the senate testimony of the IRS regarding Business Compliance Concerns

Pinnacle Foods Contacts

June 15th, 2006 at 04:37 pm

Another list of contacts for brand named products that you may use from Flash, this time for Pinnacle Foods which include the following brands:

Armour Star, Aunt Jemima, Celeste, Duncan Hines, Lenders, Log Cabin, Mrs. Butterworths, Mrs. Pauls, Open Pit, Swanson, Vandecamps, Vlasic

Remember, these contacts are good for getting on the mailing list of these brands which will often get you coupons and other information that you might not normally have access too. Enjoy!

Reckitt Benckiser Coupon Contacts

June 11th, 2006 at 10:42 pm

Thanks to Flash we have another set of coupon contact websites - this time for Reckitt Benckiser. This includes the contact for the following brands:

AirWick, Calgon, Easy-Off, Electrasol, Jet-Dry, Lysol, Lysol Ready Brush, Old English, Rod-X, Spray ‘n’ Wash, Veet, Woolite, Cattlemen’s Barbeque Sauce, Frank’s RedHot, French’s Foods

Investing - Know Yourself

June 11th, 2006 at 06:00 pm

Another article by Roger Sorensen on investing, this time issues that you should know about yourself when deciding to invest:

Income
Financial Needs
Existing Insurance Coverage
Age
Goals
Credit Standing

Taking these issues into account will help you to figure out what investments are right for you.

Real Estate Investing

June 11th, 2006 at 05:01 pm

A new article over at Investing Page from Roger Sorensen who is the editor there on Real Estate investing on some of the options you have if you purchased a second home that you're considering selling:

If you bought the house because you wanted rental income, or had a good tip from a friend, perhaps you should sell. Housing is a cyclical market and what goes up will come down. At this time, the fourth quarter update of the 2005 Global Insight/National City Housing Valuation Analysis notes that affordability is at its lowest point since 1991. This is due to the twin factors of rising interest rates and high home valuations.

Timeshare Nightmare

June 11th, 2006 at 01:11 pm

Imagine if you purchased a timeshare with a beautiful view and had been promised that the view would never be obstructed only to find out the vacation resort timeshare planned to build another building that would obstruct your view as soon as all the timeshare units in your building were sold. This is what has happened to several thousand timeshare owners as updated on Timeshare Trap. Yet another reason you should always get all promises in writing if you decide to purchase a timeshare (although I highly recommend that you don't)

Making Taxes Easier

June 9th, 2006 at 03:52 pm

Yet another IRS tax release, this time explaining how the IRS is making your taxes easier.

AMT Assistant for Individual Taxpayers
Streamlined Extension of Time to File
Simplified Tax Filing Requirements for Small Employers with Form 944
Revised Schedule K-1 for Partnerships, S-corporations and Trusts

Now while the IRS is claiming a simplification here, I feel that taxes are so much more complicated than they need to be. It really doesn't make since why taxes have to be so complicated - seems that they should be focusing on the overall state of taxes rather than individual areas...

Rich Seapak Foods Contacts

June 3rd, 2006 at 05:43 am

Another list of contacts provided by Flash (for coupons, newsletters and special offers)is now live - this one for Rich Seapak Foods which includes the following brands:

SeaPak, Farm Rich, Casa DiBertacchi, Rich’s Eclairs, Byron’s Barbecue

IRS Tax Press Releases

June 3rd, 2006 at 05:23 am

The IRS has released three new tax releases - probably won7t apply to anyone here, but have updated our sister site with the information:

There are seven Honda Hybrid Cars that have qualified for the hybrid car tax credit.

Charities have been reminded by the IRS not to participate in political campaign activities and has set up an enforcement program to make sure that charities don't do do.

The IRS has put in place an explanation on how commercial property owners can participate and receive the energy efficiency deduction for their properties.

SC Johnson Contacts

June 1st, 2006 at 06:16 pm

Another set of contact websites for those looking to get on newsletters and receive coupons from their favorite brands - this time for SC Johnson courtesy of Flash:

Drano, Edge, Fantastik, FloorCare, Glade, Grab-It, Pledge, Off, Oust, Raid, Saran, Scrubbing Bubbles, Shout, Skintimate, Windex, and Ziploc

Monster Debt

June 1st, 2006 at 09:14 am

While debt isn't a fun topic, it makes it a bit more enjoyable to read about when a good analogy is thrown in as with Taming the Debt Monster:

...The other scare process - the real scare process - is worse than anything Saw II or The Hills Have Eyes has to throw at you. No, the real scare process has to do with that hideous monster lurking in your life at all times.

Debt.

Debt really can be a monster when you have it weighing on your shoulders 24 hours a day, but there are ways to get rid of the monster - the first being to admit that the monster exists and it was likely of your own creation.

Take the steps to start reducing the monster's size and you'll find that it isn't near as scary as you once thought - at least in the sense that you are able to tame it when you take action to reduce it.

IRS Expands Direct Deposit Options

June 1st, 2006 at 04:06 am

Good news for those that get tax refunds and would like to direct deposit a portion of it into your savings or retirement accounts. Until this year if you had your tax refund directly deposited, you could only do so into a single checking or savings account. The IRS announced today that starting next year, you can have your tax refund deposited into up to three different accounts:

The IRS will create a new form, Form 8888, which will give taxpayers greater control over their refunds. Form 8888 will give taxpayers a choice of selecting one, two or three accounts such as checking, savings and retirement account. Taxpayers who want all their refund deposited directly into one account can still use the appropriate line on the Form 1040 series.


This is good news for those who are better at saving when they money never goes into their general banking account.


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