Fuel Economy: A Tank Full of Cash

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Fuel Economy and How/Why to Figure it Out

A while back Sarah wrote a post about buying a “new to us” car.  When buying a car there are so many things to consider – so many features to balance.  How much the car has been driven, if there have been any accidents or liens put on the car, signs of rust or other factors about condition.  You need to factor in style – SUV, sedan, truck, coupe, crossover.  Then there are design features like sunroof, backup cameras, paint colour and navigation consoles.  One stat that people always look at, even if they don’t understand it, is the fuel economy.  This is a very important factor in the ongoing cost of the vehicle.  I doubt I’m alone in not giving it fair play in terms of the financial decisions involved with a car purchase.

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Hello World

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Hello WorldLast Sunday, June 18th 2017, our daughter came into the world.  Her name is Ava and we are over the moon about her arrival.

There was never a plan to get a Father’s Day card for Scott but her arrival at 6:05am was one of the most exciting moments of our life.  We are all tired and sleepy but oh so happy.  Our hearts are full of love and excitement but we know that there is a lot to do to keep this little one alive and thriving.  Our first night at home was nice because there wasn’t a whole bunch of people coming or going into the room whenever they pleased.   As can be expected it was full of emotion and chaos of night feedings and figuring things out as we go.

It was a tough delivery that ended in a C-section.  I’m still recovering from that major surgery and it has been tough.  Not being able to do some of the things I normally do, like drive, have been difficult.  Laughing and coughing are rough as well and having a new baby around the house makes you laugh a lot.  We are all from the same humble beginnings.  What I do know is that things will get better over time.  Every day I feel more and more like a normal person which is making me feel better as whole.

We are clearly very biased but she is so pretty (and smart and funny – since girls are more than just their looks).  She looks exactly like Scott as a baby except her hair is brown like mine.  It’s funny how nature works to let dad know “hey – this one is yours”.

One of the biggest changes to our lives is that things are a lot slower.  As “list” people who deal with a whole bunch of things day to day things with a 1 week old aren’t that predictable or easy to manage.  We knew that we would be slower getting to places but what I didn’t know is that you can’t really rush an infant into a schedule or routine that they are not ready for.  We are just taking things a day at a time and learning as we go.

We will still be around with regular content coming but forgive us if we are slower than normal on some stuff.  We are trying to figure life out and we look forward to getting into the groove of this new life we have.  And yes I fell asleep at the computer just before I scheduled it.

Thank you for your support and love.

Best,

Sarah, Scott and Ava

How Living on One Income Made Me Re-Think Our Money

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Living On One IncomeWe have mentioned a couple of times but Scott was let go from his job last year. He got a working notice which was basically means that he was told the last day he had a job.  He got the notice in May of 2016 and his last date was December 31st.  As Scott mentioned here we took some active steps to help prepare ourselves if in fact he was not going to be able to get a job after his last day.  The most drastic step we took was moving to one income as of August, 5 months before he would have lost his job.  Living on one income taught me more than I ever thought it would.

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Wages Gro-o-ow In Ontario!

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A Look At The Proposed Increase To Minimum Wage In Ontario

One thought that is shared amongst almost all millennials is that the cost of living is increasing at a much faster rate than income.  In a perfect world, there would be parity between inflation of costs and inflation of wages.  This isn’t a perfect world though and these trends tend to work more on reaction rather than cooperation.  After much fanfare – Ontario is on the cusp of raising the minimum wage. This is part of the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, 2017.  Due to the impact on retail and food service chains, the reactions are mixed.  These employers often use a large number of minimum wage (or close to) workers to operate their business.  I believe this is both a good, and necessary step towards improving our economy.  Only time will tell if the effect is positive or negative.

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What It Takes To Be A Millionaire!

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From A Non-Millionaire’s Perspective!

There are over 1 million millionaires in Canada.  Cross the border to the South and that number skyrockets to around 16 million.  So in a sample of approximately 357 million people – almost 5% of us are millionaires.  I wrote a post not that long ago about how the value of a million dollars has shrunk considerably.  I still believe being a millionaire has a certain prestige to it even in today’s world economy.  So if your goal is to have the title of millionaire – what is that going to take?  I’m not talking about strategy – I’m talking about what you need to actually have to be a millionaire.

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Couple of Sense in the Capital – Our Trip to Ottawa

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Trip to OttawaA weekend getaway:

Sometime in late March we decided that it would be really nice to get away for a weekend.  The last time we had gone on vacation was when we went to Las Vegas to celebrate our second wedding anniversary in 2013.  It had been quite a long time for us and we figured it would be nice to get away even for a couple of days.  We spent some time looking for a place to go. We knew we were not going to have a lot of time so we wanted to keep it in Ontario.  After looking at a few places about an hour or two away from the city we decided that we would make a trip to Ottawa (our nation’s capital) for a weekend.

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Budgeting on a Commission

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A Few Ideas on How to Budget When Your Salary is Commission-Based

There are a few different ways to receive payment for work performed; you can be an hourly employee, working on a fixed salary, completing a project for a contracted amount, or working for a percentage of the sales you make (AKA Commission).  There can also have a combination of these methods of payment – you can work on a salary up to a certain amount of hours and then qualify for overtime at an hourly rate.  An employee can have a base salary and get a commission for sales.  Generally speaking you wouldn’t have both a salary and a contract payment but almost any other combination is possible.  I recently started in a position with a sales role.  While I’ve been in sales in one way, shape or form before, this was my first foray into a pay structure that involved commission.  I have a base salary, but the question came up – how do you budget for commission?
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Can You Save Too Much?

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Can You Save Too MuchA couple of months ago Des from Half-Banked had a blog post about how to spend or save your tax refund for maximum happiness.  One of the points was to treat yourself; guilt-free. (Check her site out if you have not already!)   Her point was if you are responsible with 90% of it you don’t have to feel guilty about spending 10% of it.  It’s a great concept and it really works for people who are more likely to spend 90% and save 10%.  The problem with that is that I can’t seem to put that into practice myself.  So I was wondering if I should feel odd for saving/investing 100% and if I’m missing out on something.

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Why Being Money Nerds Makes Us Happy

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Time For a Money Nerd-Out!

Ever since before we got married Sarah and I have been money nerds.  When we launched Couple of Sense  we had an outlet (besides each other) to talk about money.  This outlet lets you read into the inner money dork in us, our concepts and habits that really drive our voice.  We may not be completely unique in our dweebing out (1st paragraph and I already have used three variations of nerd).  What is important to us in our budget is analytics.  In order to have pertinent stats, we need to gather data.  This is where we really rev our engines.
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