Totally Money Blog Carnival – #52

Welcome to the Totally Money Blog Carnival. This is the 52nd edition.

This was my first ever crack at running a personal finance blog carnival and I have a greater appreciation for the job of an editor now! It was a lot of work and really interesting reading about new personal finance concepts and new articles.

[box type=”info”]If you want to be featured in upcoming editions, please use this submission form.  They are also still looking for carnival hosts. [/box]

Please enjoy!

The majority of articles submitted this week was the one the 2 things we are assured of in life: death and taxes! So this week’s theme is taxes!

[box type=”info”]What are you doing to minimize the amount you pay for income taxes this year? I am personally maximizing my tax returns by contributing more money to my RRSP (a 401K equivalent to my US readers).[/box]

Editor’s Choice:

I now present my editor’s choice picks this week.

Crystal presents 5 Tips on How to Improve Your Credit Score posted at Budgeting in the Fun Stuff. Improving your credit score seems like it should be a fairly easy thing. Pay your bills on time, and you should have a good credit score, right? Well, that is not always the case. While it is always a good idea to pay your bills and to pay them on time, simply paying on time will not always guarantee a great credit score because other factors are involved.

[quote style=”boxed”]Your credit score is important for your mortage rate and borrowing opportunities, Crystal gives some great tips.[/quote]

Erika presents Taking control of our finances posted at Newlyweds on a Budget. How one young couple hopes to take control of their finances, pay off debt and save money in 2012.

[quote style=”boxed”]I love to read tips for young couples – all these tips add up.[/quote]

MR presents Are Famous Personal Finance Authors Too Rich To Understand You? posted at Money Reasons. Do rich personal finance authors forget what it’s like to live in the middle? Do you think personal finance bloggers walk the walk and talk the talk better?

Ben Demeter presents 11 Most Evil Things the Banking Industry Did in 2011 posted at Credit Card Assist Blog. Ben created a summary of the most egregious, harmful and predatory activities of the banking industry as a whole in 2011.

[quote style=”boxed”]As a major stockholder of Canadian bank stocks, it was interesting reading this article and seeing the difference in the United States.[/quote]

Colin Williams presents How To Help Your Children To Save Money posted at humble savers. Helping your children to save is a major step to making sure that they will be financially secure in later life.

[quote style=”boxed”]We are having a little one in a little under two months and we plan to making sure they have a good start in life.[/quote]


Fanny presents How to Create an Airtight Budget in 2 Easy Steps posted at Living Richly on a Budget. If you’ve ever created a budget and then failed to stick with it, you’re in good company. There is a way to get everything in order before you make your budget that will not only make it easier to create, but also help you adhere to it.

Kennedi presents How Do Most People Spend Their Money? posted at Face and Fitness. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, half a household’s money goes to housing and transportation. If we could trim just those two costs … we’d have a ton more to, ahem, “save” (or spend on makeup!)


Linsey presents Working from Home. . .With a Toddler posted at 1099 Mom. I can imagine that for most Moms, there is at least one “high-needs” kid in the household. Working from home with one in your care, however, takes a delicate balance of being attentive and not allowing yourself to be completely run over.

Bob presents 24 Legit Home-Based Business Opportunities posted at Christian Personal Finance. If you are like many, the thought of starting a home-based business has probably crossed your mind at some point. With the economy being what it is, layoffs all around us, and an increasing desire for many to escape the rat race and work from home many are trying to start a home-based business.

Teacher Man presents Afraid of Life? Grad School Isn’t the Answer posted at My University Money. Many have of course moved on to jobs, others to careers, and still others are pursuing leisure travel or other whims. One option I am seeing taken more and more is to go back to grad school.

Brad presents Upgrade Your Resume By Going Back To School – Just Remember To Bring Along Your Tablet posted at RESUME Mag. With the launch of the newest app for the iPad, iBooks 2, Apple has set out to reinvent the textbook. Here are five ways that this makes it easier to go back to school and upgrade your resume.


Darwin presents Mortgage Activity Gone Wild Due Record Low Rates – Are You Taking Advantage? posted at Darwin’s Money. Last week, there was a 20 percent surge in mortgage activity driven primarily by refinancing activity from record low rates. The mortgage banker’s association said seasonally adjust refinances were up 26 percent while home purchase loan activity was up 10 percent. Something’s Working! What are you going?

Stephen Vanderpool presents Building a Credit Score from Scratch: 6 Easy Steps posted at NerdWallet.

Building credit is something of a Catch-22. Without a credit card, it’s hard to build a credit history. Without a credit history, it’s hard to qualify for a credit card. So how does someone start from scratch to build a credit score? Honest answer: By starting at the bottom and beginning the long upward climb.

Eddie presents 5 Rules to Teach Your Kids About Credit Cards posted at Finance Fox. Some parents think that credit cards are evil and that keeping kids on the other side is the only way to keep them safe. My parents just never had the time or true knowledge to share anything with me about credit cards.

Shaun presents Get Your Family Out of Debt posted at Smart Family Finance. There are ways to get out of debt if you put your mind to it, and focus on being debt free.

Mike presents Create A Plan To Earn More Rewards Points posted at Rewards Cards USA. One of the biggest complaints that many people have regarding their credit card rewards is that it takes too long to earn the requisite number of points to redeem for anything worthwhile.

Mike presents Scotia Rewards Program Review posted at Rewards Cards Canada. The Scotia Rewards program is a points-based system where members are awarded one Scotia Rewards point for every $1 in purchases charged to your ScotiaGold Passport Visa account or ScotiaGold Passport for business Visa account.


Sustainable PF presents The Real Reason Nobody Is Buying Electric Cars posted at Sustainable Personal Finance. Thus far, the Volt has been a giant flop. There are all sorts of reasons why, all of which are different symptoms of the same root problem. Let’s see if you can figure it out.


Miss T. presents How to Build a Bird Feeder out of Recycled Materials posted at Prairie Eco Thrifter. Here are four quick, simple ways to build a bird feeder from recycled materials that you probably have laying around.

Glen presents How to Save on Groceries When You Have a Food Intolerance posted at Parenting Family Money . When you discover you have a food intolerance, your diet has to change. But you’ll find that groceries get expensive. Save with these tips.

SB presents 8 Tricks to Get Cheap Flight Tickets posted at One Cent at a Time. Over the years, I learned to be more observant, practical, and strategic with my flight ticket purchases. They became some of my techniques in looking for cheap flights. If you want to get them at a bargain, take note of these tips.

Peter presents Is Multi-Generational Living for You? posted at Bible Money Matters. Multi-generational living can be a positive experience for many families, but think carefully about all of the consequences before agreeing; make sure your parents have also considered all of the repercussions. If both parties are agreeable to compromise, the situation may work very well for you.

D.J. presents Seek Alternatives to Save on Your Monthly Phone Bill posted at The Family Wallet. If you are looking to pay off debt or just to trim your household budget, one good place to look to make further cuts is your home telephone service. With so many options currently available, you may find that you don’t even need your home phone service or the expense.

Lisa presents My New Sofa, and Why It’s Covered in Tin Foil posted at Thriftability. From wardrobe updates to home furnishings, thrift stores have made a huge impact on my life, and effected the way I save money. Shopping at thrift stores not only helps me stick to a budget: it also helps recycle pre-owned items which may have ended up in the landfill previously.

Wayne presents Cheap Movie Alternatives posted at Young Family Finance. It isn’t uncommon for young families to be strapped for cash. When you are looking for creative ways to save money without making a huge sacrifice, it is time to get creative. With the popularity of motion picture, it is hard to give up movies. Yet, going to the movies is not getting cheaper.

Money Management

Pam Whitlock presents How much control should kids have over their money? posted at The MoneyTrail Blog. Letting your child make spending decisions can make some parents uneasy. However, kids need to become actively engaged with their money so that money management becomes a relevant part of their life.

Marie presents Ways Your Teenagers Can Increase Their Spending posted at Money Spending Mommy. If your teen is short on cash, here are some ideas that he could use to earn the money he needs.

Barbara Friedberg presents Biggest Money Story of 2011 or How to Get a Decent Return on Your Cash posted at Barbara Friedberg Personal Finance. Money Magazine selected their Top Money Stories of 2011. Initially, I began to dissect their list and intended to write about them all. But, I got stuck on the low interest rates for savings. This is a huge topic and decided it warranted an entire article.

Lazy Man presents Reviewing My 2011 Goals posted at Lazy Man and Money. With 2011 now a distant memory, it’s time to go back and look at my goals for 2011. That’s one major benefit of blogging, there’s accountability baked into everything I do. In 2011, I had set 5 goals, most of them business-related.

Squirrelers presents Stock Market Returns and the Super Bowl Effect posted at Squirrelers. Correlation might not mean causation when it comes to assessing data. That said, there’s an interesting trend involving stock market returns and the Super Bowl. Taking this into account, who do you want to win?

Real Estate

Don presents Live A Life of Wealth posted at MoneySmartGuides. If I were to ask you to describe what being wealthy means to you, how would you answer? A young me late teenager would have answered that question as follows: Wealthy to me is a huge house with an outdoor pool, but now I see wealth differently.

Kyle presents How People Buy Real Estate with “No Money Down” posted at The Penny Hoarder. Some of my favorite infomercials include the ridiculous ‘No Money Down’ real estate videos. If you haven’t already wasted your $360, allow me to spill the beans.


Boomer presents How Much Do We Spend On Our Pets? posted at Boomer & Echo. The average dog owner claims to spend over $1800 annually on each dog while the average cat owner spends around $1400 on each cat.


Sandy presents Applying All the Right Deductions to Increase That Return posted at Yes, I Am Cheap.

Michael presents Turbo Tax 2012 Review posted at PT Money Personal Finance. A review of the differing versions of Turbo Tax 2012, including their customer support.

Jill presents How Do Tax Brackets Work? posted at My Dollar Plan. Are you getting ready to file your taxes? If so, you might find yourself needing a slight refresher on how tax brackets work.

Daniel presents Should Tax Evaders Be Given A Safe Haven? posted at Sweating the Big Stuff. The IRS has given tax evaders who have hidden money in offshore accounts a chance to avoid jail time, netting the IRS at least $4.4 billion.

Everything Finance presents College Credits and Deductions Available When Filing Your Taxes posted at Everything Finance. While there is no doubt that the price of education is outpacing inflation, the government does allow small ways to lower your overall cost.


Kevin presents My Budget Spreadsheet is Too Much Work posted at Thousandaire. My budget spreadsheet is too complicated. I’m making things easier on myself and switching to

Corey presents Confessions of a Street Canvasser posted at 20s Finances. Have you ever been walking down the street in New York City, Boston, DC, Chicago, or San Francisco and been stopped by a young person carrying a clipboard and wearing a charity t-shirt? This strange phenomenon has a name ‘ street canvassing.

Amanda L Grossman presents How to Save Money on Dieting posted at Frugal Confessions. Comparing diet program costs is one way to maximize the amount of money you have to spend on dieting or to make you run the other way with your hard earned money, see how they stack up against one another!

Kevin presents 3 Frugal Ideas for a Romantic Valentine’s Day posted at Invest It Wisely. Remember, there’s no need to spend a fortune on Valentine’s Day. Sometimes, a bit of cheap fun is all you need.

Matt presents Should You Get a Loan for Your Car or Pay Cash? posted at RamblingFever Money. In this hypothetical example, two sisters pay the exact same amount monthly for their cars over a five year period. One sister ends up with a 1-year old car worth $20,000 and the other sister ends up with a 5-year old car worth $11,000. How is this possible?

Jen presents Everybody Can Have an Emergency Fund! posted at Master the Art of Saving. If you don’t have an emergency fund at all, then why not start with a goal of $100? Sure it’s not going to be too helpful should a big financial emergency.

Jeffrey presents Making Space For Roommates: Are the Savings Worth the Hassles? posted at Money Spruce.

Hank presents How I Recently Invested In A Rock Band posted at Money Q&A.
There are tons of other great projects on Kickstarter that you can invest in like the new Crowfield album. Kickstarter is a great way to invest in a rock band and other awesome projects.

17 thoughts on “Totally Money Blog Carnival – #52”

  1. Pingback: Blog Carnivals

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *