Take 5: A Roundup of Reads From Around the Web

This week: Donald Trump’s biggest failures, a bad retirement strategy, why layaway isn’t so bad after all, cheaper drinks and little expenses you can cut to make a big difference.

1. 6 Little Expenses You Can Cut to Pay Off Debt

[Credit.com] “If you’ve ever overdrawn your checking account while trying to live on a budget, you already know it doesn’t take a big hole to sink you — little leaks can do the trick.

The idea behind this article is that little amounts can often add up to big changes. The little expenses this author refers to include, among others, app purchases, Starbucks, warehouse club memberships and gym memberships. See the post for more.

2. Keep Your Family From Drowning Your Budget

[The Dollar Stretcher] “There’s water, water everywhere and not a drop to drink. At least, that is what my children say as they look in our fridge for something to drink. I always have lots of bottles of cold, sparkling water on hand, but they prefer soft drinks, juice boxes, Gatorade, Hawaiian Punch, flavored milk like chocolate and strawberry, and sports drinks. They’re all enjoyable, except the price.”

If you’ve got kids that enjoy expensive drinks, this is your article. It goes over many pricey options and offers advice on how to get them for less. Single best idea? When it comes to everything from juice to Gatorade, buy the powdered or concentrated version and add your own water.

3. Why You Might Love Holiday Layaway — Even Though Personal Finance Experts Hate It

[The Penny Hoarder] “Money experts generally don’t like holiday layaway programs, but some regular shoppers disagree. Here’s why options like Wal-Mart layaway might be a good addition to your holiday shopping strategy.”

Many personal finance advisers criticize layaway plans for drawbacks like fees and lack of flexibility. For example, if you buy something on layaway and it later goes on sale, you’ve already locked in a potentially higher price. And the fees you pay for layaway can sometimes exceed the interest you’d pay by using credit cards.

This article advances the argument that layaway isn’t always bad, then offers some advice on doing it right.

4. Why Working Longer to Save More Is a Bad Retirement Strategy

[Debt.com] “Many of the retirees surveyed said they had planned on working later in life to save more, but unexpected events took them out of the workforce early. Of those surveyed, 60 percent stopped working due to health or disability issues, and 27 percent left the workforce because of changes within their companies.”

This post reinforces the old adage that those who fail to plan are planning to fail. Waiting too long to save for retirement, then counting on working longer, is all well and good if life cooperates, but it’s a dangerous wager to make.

5. Donald Trump’s 5 Biggest Business Failures

[Wise Bread] “Over the years, he’s had many ventures simply fail to catch on for a variety of reasons. Here are five of his biggest business failures — some of which you’ve probably never heard of.”

We’ve already pointed out that Donald Trump isn’t the financial genius he’d have you believe. This article highlights more of his financial low points. These failures include two variations of a board game, vodka, an airline, casinos and the infamous “Trump University.”

Stacy Johnson

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