20 Tips for Living a Healthy Lifestyle on a Budget

Jen SmithFrugality, Personal Finance26 Comments

healthy lifestyle on a budget

Still looking for ways to amp up your health routine this year? Follow these familiar tips and a few unique ones to inspire your healthy lifestyle on a budget. 1. Walk A few extra steps today could be the start of lifelong, healthy journey. Walking in everyday situations like taking the back parking spot walking during lunch are easy. You can also walk the mall in bad weather (leave your credit card at home though) or the beach on vacation. It’s easy and can set the tone if you’re just starting a health routine. 2. Download an App From workouts … Read More

Our First Time Home Buyer Experience

Jen SmithPersonal Finance28 Comments

first time home buyer experience

Two weeks ago if you’d told me I’d be writing about my first time home buyer experience, I would’ve straight laughed at you. I’m an avid HGTV watcher so I had grand fixer upper dreams and plans to make them happen. But like, next year. Needless to say, reality looked nothing like my plans. We got the call on a Tuesday evening, our landlord was making more money with his properties on Airbnb so he wanted to do the same with our place. He gave us 60 days to vacate. Since we were month-to-month and had proper notice, there was … Read More

10 Ways to Save on Your Wedding

Jen SmithFrugality, Personal Finance4 Comments

With 2.5 million weddings annually and the average wedding costing an overwhelming $32,641, I don’t have to tell you that the business of weddings outrageous (but you’re here so I will.) Marriage is a great thing and you don’t need a wedding to have a marriage. I love parties though so a wedding was a no brainer for me. An excuse to have all my friends and family together to drink wine and dance all night? Count me in! Fortunately, there are ways to save on your wedding that won’t compromise your sense of style. I wanted something elegant and … Read More

How to be a Mystery Shopper

Jen SmithPersonal Finance18 Comments

Be a Secret Shopper

Mystery Shopping has been a fun activity for us while we’ve been paying off our student loans. It’s taken our tight budget and opened it up for dinners out, movies, and activities we otherwise wouldn’t get to experience. My husband and I have been mystery shopping for over a year. Even with busy schedules and multiple jobs we still make time to shop at least twice a month. We’ve done car test drives, movie theaters, cell phone stores, quick-service restaurants, fine dining, mini golf, roller skating, and so many more. If there’s a shop for it, we’ve tried it, or … Read More

Why Unfollowing my Friends Helped my Finances

Jen SmithPersonal Finance18 Comments

Unfollow Your Friends

For the last 15 months we’ve been paying off our $84,000 of consumer and student loan debt. We’re $60K down and have $24K to go. It’s been a combination of hard, easy, fun, annoying, and exhausting. There are times I wish we hadn’t taken out the loans, but I know we wouldn’t have the jobs and friends we love without them. So even in the arduous task of paying them back, I’m grateful. Why Unfollowing my Friends Helped my Finances   In paying off our student loans in such a short amount of time I’ve learned a lot about myself, … Read More

Free and Cheap Ways to Workout for People who Hate the Gym

Jen SmithFrugality, Personal Finance25 Comments

Free and Cheap Ways to Workout

There are a ton of free and cheap ways to workout without being left to your own devices. Just because you don’t have $125 or even $30 per month to drop on fitness there’s no excuse to not be taking care of your body. The gym scares me, and I’m a pretty fit person. I have a free membership to the YMCA through one of my jobs and I have never set foot inside the gym part. I do love their Body Pump and Boot Camp classes though. I need someone telling me what to do or I’ll wander aimlessly … Read More

20 Things We Did to Pay off $53K of Debt in One Year

Jen SmithDebt, Personal Finance58 Comments

Pay off Student Loans

In 2016 my husband and I paid off over $53,000 of student loan debt. Our combined income was roughly $88K meaning we lived off $35K and put 60% of our income towards loans. Pinch me. UPDATE: As of August 31, 2017 Travis and I are STUDENT LOAN FREE! We paid off $77,646.54 in 23 months! How to Pay off Student Loan Debt   This was clearly not a casual year for us. It was really easy signing for these loans but it was not easy paying them off. Over $12,000 of my personal income alone was from side jobs and I … Read More