Take 5: A Roundup of Reads From Around the Web

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This week: How your friends can hurt your credit, cutting the cost of midnight snacks, how much golf caddies make, how to wipe a hard drive and what to do if you work in a dying profession.

1. Is Bad Credit Contagious?

[Credit.com] “Credit histories don’t get merged. So, unless you’re co-signing for a loan or, say, taking out a mortgage with someone, your friends can’t exactly affect your credit score. But their attitudes toward money could be influencing your own.”

This article makes a good point: If you run around with people who live beyond their means, you’re more likely to do so as well. Makes sense, especially among the young and impressionable.

I learned to say no long ago, as well as to plan things that everyone can afford. But if you’re putting your credit at risk trying to keep up with your friends, give this one a read.

2. 3 Sure Ways to Cut the Cost of Midnight Snacks

[The Dollar Stretcher] “Midnight snacking is one of the quickest ways to fatten your grocery bill. It may not seem like much of a pocket burner, but if you take the time to consider your family’s eating habits, you might find that you’re chowing down $10-$15 out of the fridge each night. Wouldn’t you like to save up to $120 a month?”

If you’re really eating $10 to $15 every midnight, you likely have more than your grocery bill to worry about. In any case, this article is about finding snack substitutes that are both healthier and cheaper than the traditional milk and cookies.

3. How Much Do Professional Caddies Make? (and Other Unique High-Paying Jobs)

[Three Thrifty Guys] “There are some unusual, high-paying jobs out there – and caddying can be one of them. If you are an avid viewer of golf on TV or have a passing interest in the game — you may be surprised at what some of the professional caddies can make.”

I have actually wondered what professional caddies make. As it turns out, it’s a lot; at least, providing your pro is in the top 10. If they’re toward the bottom of the pack? Not so much. This article also mentions several other interesting jobs, from roughneck to crab fisherman to crime scene cleaner. Check it out, then read “7 Ways to Make Extra Money This Summer.”

4. Are You Selling Your Personal Information for Nothing?

[Debt.com] “In the study, 200 used hard disk drives and solid state drives were purchased from eBay and Craigslist. Digital analysts recovered personal data from 78 percent of the drives.”

Ever sell a computer or phone with the hard drive still intact? You may have handed over all manner of personal information to the buyer. Read this article for a description of the problem, along with the steps you need to take to really erase that hard drive.

5. Escape Your Dying Industry With One of These 8 Careers Instead

[Wise Bread] “Once upon a time, there were expert buggy-whip makers, and bowling alley pinsetters. Technology made those jobs extinct. Now, other jobs are in jeopardy, and if you are in a career that is being made obsolete, it’s time to start weighing your options.”

As technology expands, some industries shrink. This article lists eight dying industries, but it also includes ideas to harness and redirect current skills into something more modern. The list includes flower shop workers, travel agents, sewing machinists, telemarketers, tailors, photo processors, clerks and telephone operators.

I was happy to see journalists weren’t on the list … yet.

Don’t forget to share your thoughts and reactions in comments below or on our Facebook page.

Stacy Johnson

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