• Give a Gift
  • Customer Service
  • Promotions
  • Videos
  • Blogs
  • Win
  • Games

March 17, 2008

7 Ways to Save Money

A new book offers realistic rules for saving — and spending — it.

Share
Special Offer

As a correspondent at TheStreet.com, Farnoosh Torabi was tired of financial-advice books that tsk-tsked her jeans splurges and offered 101 ways to spice up ramen noodles. So, at 27, she wrote You're So Money: Live Rich Even When You're Not — full of solid advice wrapped in Devil Wears Prada attitude. Here, she talks us through the current economic tumult — the country's and our own.

STOP FREAKING OUT. "Markets go up and down. Twentysomethings shouldn't be concerned about what will likely be a yearlong recession," Torabi says. If you're heavily invested in domestic stocks, you might want to switch in some foreign mutual funds or Treasury bonds. Just don't pull out of the market altogether: "Your money's safer there in the long run than in your checking account, where you'd just spend it."

STOP MAXING OUT. To keep your credit score from tanking, Torabi suggests a 30 percent rule — use only that portion of the card's limit. Since the Fed recently slashed rates, your mail will be flooded with zero-APR card offers, but check the fine print: Many start you off with a low ($500 to $1000) credit line, so it's easy to pass that 30 percent mark and watch your score take a hit.

HAVE THE MONEY TALK WITH YOUR GUY. TODAY. "Marriages end over money," Torabi says. So it's never too early to find out if your goals match your partner's. "I'm not suggesting you ask, 'How much bank do you make?' But say, 'How much do you think is enough for you to happily live on?' Whether he says, 'Money doesn't buy happiness' or '$300K a year, plus 15 percent bonus,' you've got your answer."

LET THE U.S. TREASURY PAY OFF YOUR AMEX. If you have debt, put your government rebate check toward that. If you don't, put the cash into your 401K. If your 401K is fat and you're debt-free, Torabi says to follow the Fed's advice: Spend to stimulate the economy — i.e., buy that iPod Touch and feel patriotic doing it.

THREE WAYS TO SPEND CLEVER
1. SKIP THE GYM. Dump your membership for now and re-up in the summer, when rates are lowest.

2. NEVER OPEN A BAR TAB WITH YOUR CREDIT CARD. Tipping 15 to 20 percent when you close out comes to much more than the dollar per drink you'd drop if you paid cash.

3. SEEK OUT BYOB EATERIES. A $10 bottle of red at the liquor store costs $29 at the restaurant; end-of-month hangover a given.


Share
This Is A Developing Story
Connect with Marie Claire:
Advertisement
horoscopes
daily giveaway
Win a year’s supply of makeup products from Tarte and a year’s supply of hair products from Hamadi Organics!

Win a year’s supply of makeup products from Tarte and a year’s supply of hair products from Hamadi Organics!

enter now
You Know You Want More
More From Career Tips
The High-Performer's Cheat Sheet

The 10 rarely-discussed-but-totally-essential career skills they don't teach in business school—and expert advice on how to nail them.

The Single Girl's Second Shift

You spend every night at the office, cluttering your desk with takeout containers. Your coworkers with kids are out the door at 5. Does work-life balance apply only to moms? Ayana Byrd reports on the latest type of workplace discrimination.

post a comment

Special Offer
Link Your Marie Claire Account to Facebook
Welcome!

Marie Claire already has an account with this email address. Link your account to use Facebook to sign in to Marie Claire. To insure we protect your account, please fill in your password below.

Forgot Password?

Thanks for Joining

Your information has been saved and an account has been created for you giving you full access to everything marieclaire.com and Hearst Digital Media Network have to offer. To change your username and/or password or complete your profile, click here.

Continue
Your accounts are now linked

You now have full access to everything Marie Claire and Hearst Digital Media Network have to offer. To change your settings or profile, click here.

Continue