More and more Americans are looking for increasingly small places to live, some less than 100 square feet. Small-space living is most popular with young urban singles and students who live in cities where the cost of living is high. Some micro-housing buildings provide living quarters for six to eight residents who share a kitchen; other similar spaces include a small kitchenette. The spaces are about the size of a camper or a hotel room, typically 150 to 250 square feet, and may even be transportable. Those promoting these small abodes aren’t talking about people who are “downsizing.” Instead, they have coined the term “rightsizing” to describe the goal of the “minimalists” who are choosing to live small. Continue reading
One way or another, you probably learned some important lessons about money as you grew up. Some things you learned from your parents (and possibly grandparents). They probably tried to teach you the things they believed were important. You may have learned other things about money (good or bad) by observing your family and others. If you were lucky you may have taken a class in high school that included a few lessons on money management. Regardless, your financial literacy is likely to have some gaps. Perhaps, you know you still have a lot to learn before you can manage your money with confidence.
A recent survey by the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC) found that 65 percent of people say their mother is intimidated by money, views managing money as a necessary evil, or has never managed money. About 730 people responded to the poll on the NFCC’s website, http://www.debtadvice.org/. Just 35 percent of those surveyed agreed their mother is “pretty savvy managing money, and enjoys it,” according to the poll. A survey regarding dad’s financial savvy might well have received similar responses from many of us. Continue reading
Decorating small rental spaces presents unique decorating challenges. With a little creativity, you can put your personal stamp on your place without spending a lot of money. A few decorating tricks will help you make your space look larger than it really is. Careful planning will unify your walls, ceiling, windows, floors, furnishings, and accessories to get the look you want. You can even find ways to add storage to make space more functional. Continue reading
After saving for a down payment and establishing a good credit rating, you are ready to start looking for your first home. Not so fast! Before you start searching the internet and trolling your favorite neighborhood, take time to educate yourself about the real estate market in your area. Continue reading