My Top 5 Borderline Bizarre Frugal Hacks

I’m borderline bizarre, but who isn’t?

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Canada got rid of the penny, but the penny-pinching philosophy is alive and well with me.

Frugal people everywhere do bizarre things. Some have spreadsheets calculating dollars per calorieĀ others ditch their houses and live in RVs.

The thing is: those things may appear bizarre to us, but it’s not bizarre to them. It’s a conscious choice they’ve made to become their best frugal selves. And for the record: we are all guilty of bizarre habits. Some people are crazy about folding clothing a certain way, or keeping their book collection meticulously alphabetized (in my youth, I also used to organize all my VHS tapes by production company. Suffice to say, no one could ever find anything but me) – and there’s honestly nothing wrong with that.

So really: we’re all a little weird. And that’s okay. I also do weird things, specifically around saving money and I welcome you to judge me because really, our oddities is what makes each of us special.

Continue reading “My Top 5 Borderline Bizarre Frugal Hacks”

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July 2018 Financial Update

A good month of saving!

July net worth

July wrapping up means summer is basically halfway done – depressing right?

The month was basically business as usual, although I saved a lot more because my girlfriend is across the country for the next 2 months on a summer gig, which means zero dating expenses. It’s bittersweet, I guess?

Overall, I spent $2095.69 this month for a solid 67.85% savings rate. Passive income for the month also hit an all-time high for me, which was great.

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Opportunism is the Product of Asking.

If you never ask, you’ll never get.

opportunity

Let’s be real: lots of things are out of reach overnight. In all likelihood, you won’t wake up a millionaire. Your dream home won’t magically appear before your eyes. And that amazing job until retirement will likely elude you for many years. In fact, very few of us get what we want and when it comes too easy, we don’t truly appreciate it.

Things take time. The morning you wake up a millionaire, chances are that moment has been building and building for quite some time through diligence, frugality, and smart investing. And also a little bit of opportunism.

Continue reading “Opportunism is the Product of Asking.”

Tax Lessons for the Canadian Upper Middle Class

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I want to start by saying I don’t feel rich. Yes, I know, a six figure salary technically puts me in the upper middle class, but with its high cost of living in the City of Toronto, it’s hard to feel that way. Just to define that relative to Ontario, upper middle class is any single income earner with an income over $108,000.

I also acknowledge the more I make, the more I’m expected to pay in terms of tax. I just didn’t think it would happen so quickly or be so progressively punishing across all other forms of income.

So let’s talk about that today: tax on the upper middle class. I think tax can be a good thing (after all, I am a public servant myself), but we should all still strive for a level of tax efficiency, just like we would when it comes to any other form of spending. Continue reading “Tax Lessons for the Canadian Upper Middle Class”

Want a Good Job? Try these things.

job-application

I lectured in a university accounting seminar a few months ago for a cohort of graduate students from all academic fields. Some were PhD candidates, others pursuing MFAs, MAs, MScs – the gamut.

Afterwards, I was approached by several of the students in the course asking for my card. Their intentions were clear: they wanted to network and I was happy to oblige. After all, today’s job market seems to be all about who you know, and I exhausted other prospective employers with my desire to network when I was younger. So I had to pay it forward, of course!

Continue reading “Want a Good Job? Try these things.”

The Appalling Cost of a Suit.

And why it was worth it.

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This suit is the third most expensive thing I’ve ever bought. Also: I was playing croquet at a wedding.

I walked out of a store on Friday after having just spent $750 on a suit. Your reaction will either be: a) That’s peanuts, we know that a really great suit should cost you about $2000, or b) Holy hell, that’s a lot.

If you’re in category B, this article is for you because it’s certainly how I felt. If you’re in category A, your values are clearly different than mine.

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June 2018 Financial Update

Chugging along, as always…

May 2018

June is when spending can get dicey – the weather turns favourably warm, patio season is in full swing, and I probably crave ice cream or beer (two terrible things for me) almost daily.

Fortunately, I had my best month of the year so far in terms of spending, dishing out $2,167.28 this month, courtesy of two nice highlights.

Firstly, I switched cell phone providers and now have a $0.00 phone bill until December thanks to over $380 in credits. I also spent ZERO dollars on transit this month due to the BikeShare system, which I wrote about here. If it weren’t for attending a friend’s wedding and my apartment requiring tenant insurance all of a sudden, I would’ve been sub-$2000 easily.

Either way, my savings rate for the month was 63% and even better: my net worth jumped over $5000!

Continue reading “June 2018 Financial Update”