Smart SpendingSmart Spending

Massachusetts recyclers celebrate reuse -- and the joy of a great score -- with an annual Trash Finders Ball.

By Teresa Mears Feb 26, 2010 6:10PM

We’re found a ball that Cinderella could attend without needing a fairy godmother to whip her up a new dress.

 

The annual Trash Finders Ball in Massachusetts, in its third year this weekend, celebrates recycling in a big way. If your dress is made of old newspaper, so much the better. The décor, of course, is also from recycled objects.

 

But the Trash Finders in Beverly, Mass., don’t just wear recycled outfits and parade around in a Trashion Show.

 

They also bring along their best trash-picking find for judging.

 

A new retiree was so focused on living on next to nothing that she overlooked ways to increase income. No more.

By Karen Datko Feb 26, 2010 5:43PM

This guest post comes from “vh” at Funny about Money.

 

A fresh experience led me to realize that I spend way too much time on penny-pinching and way too little on focusing on the big picture that is my life -- or, more to the point, my earning potential.

 

Recently one of my former students sent me a LinkedIn invite. This caused me to return to that much-neglected site, where I was reminded that an old friend, a graphic artist with whom I worked at a magazine and later through a talent agency I ran, had made himself one of my “contacts.” When I dropped him an e-mail to ask how things were going and mentioned that I’m now free of the Great Desert University, he invited me to join him for breakfast with a business networking group he frequents.

 

So, as dawn first colored the sky, I was shooting across the city to a Good Egg restaurant in one of Scottsdale’s toniest strip malls.

 

Online booksellers are buying. You won't earn a fortune, but at least you won't have to pay for postage.

By Donna_Freedman Feb 26, 2010 2:15PM
Once I'd finally finished my undergraduate degree last December, I started eyeballing the stacks of books I'd bought for my university classes. Some I wanted to keep. Most I wanted to kiss goodbye.

Could I really find a buyer for titles as specialized as "Creating G.I. Jane: Sexuality and Power in the Women's Army Corps During World War II," "Earth Democracy: Justice, Sustainability, and Peace" or "Female Spectacle: The Theatrical Roots of Modern Feminism"? 

You can use coupons for bagels, subs and new Hasbro games. Time for a game night?

By Teresa Mears Feb 26, 2010 1:08PM

This isn’t a big week for new food deals and coupons, so we are throwing in some discounts and freebies that you can’t eat, with some help from our friends at Cities on the Cheap.

 

Alas, we are not coming up on National Chocolate Week or National Ice Cream Day, so we have no coupons for those essential items.

This may be the week to try out some of the new happy hour deals or create your own happy hour.

 

It can be done, although it's not the best route for everyone.

By Karen Datko Feb 26, 2010 12:37PM

This post comes from partner blog The Dough Roller.

 

It's a commonly accepted rule of personal finance that one should save three to six months’ worth of expenses in an emergency fund. Conventional wisdom dictates that you stash your cash in a high-interest savings account or maybe a short-term high-yield CD. The key is to have ready access to the cash in a true emergency.

 

Confession time: I've never kept three to six months’ worth of cash sitting in a bank account and don't plan to. In an emergency, I can tap investment accounts, a home-equity line of credit, or yes, even the dreaded credit card. The question for today is whether it's a smart money move to rely on credit cards as your financial backstop.

 

Fashion Week trends can be had on clearance -- if you know where to go.

By Karen Datko Feb 26, 2010 11:01AM

This Deal of the Day comes from Kelli B. Grant at partner site SmartMoney.

 

Want to hear a secret fashion retailers won’t share with you? The trendy fall and winter items they are pushing out the door now will be just as of-the-moment come autumn.

 

In other words: Shoppers who know what to look for can get hot items for next fall at substantial discounts.

 

First, don't buy more house than you need. Then, when it's time to remodel, use these simple tips to save 20% to 50%.

By Stacy Johnson Feb 26, 2010 9:20AM

This post comes from Stacy Johnson at partner site Money Talks News.

 

Food, clothing and shelter: the basic necessities, and expenses, of daily life. This week I’ve done posts on 28 ways to save on food and 18 ways to save on clothing. Now it’s time to tackle shelter.

 

Writing new laws to change the way things work is much more challenging than it seems.

By Karen Datko Feb 25, 2010 6:35PM

This guest post comes from Frank Curmudgeon at Bad Money Advice.

 

This is the third installment in what has turned out to be a series of posts about the CARD Act of 2009 (.pdf file) and the Federal Reserve’s new regulations to implement same. First, I discussed how new rules requiring lenders to consider ability to pay were a non-event. Next, I explained that there were not, after all, meaningful restrictions against giving credit cards to those under 21.

 

Today I will round up some other don’t-know-if-I-should-laugh-or-cry oddities that I came across in my few hours of research. As good a place to start as any is the other prong in the attack on underage plastic -- new draconian restrictions against marketing these evil things to college students.

 

DATA PROVIDERS

Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.

Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.

ABOUT SMART SPENDING

Smart Spending brings you the best money-saving tips from MSN Money and the rest of the Web. Join the conversation on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

VIDEO ON MSN MONEY

TOOLS

More