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The Ultimate Black Friday Strategy Guide

In this article you’ll find an in-depth strategy guide for how to tackle your Black Friday shopping this year. Not only that but we’ve provided a guide at the bottom of this article that links to all the Black Friday ads you want (from Target ads to GameStop ads) and their store hours on Thanksgiving day and Black Friday.

The Most Useful Black Friday Shopping Tips

black friday shopping

Tip 1: Hire a Babysitter

Bringing small children along with you to shop on Black Friday isn’t a great idea. Generally they’ll be too young to enjoy the crowds and long waits in line. In fact, they’ll probably hate it and keep you from being out as long as you could be without them. They’ll just get tired, hungry, and bored so keeping the kids safe at home with a spouse or babysitter is better.

Tip 2: Make a Budget

The very first thing you’ll want to do when planning your Black Friday strategy is figure out your budget. This is important so that you stay in control of your finances and not blow all your money on Black Friday. A budget will let you know how much you’re allowed to spend.

Tip 3: Check Out the Ads

Do some pre-shopping preparation by researching what you want to buy now. You can check out the prices of things you want by looking through Black Friday ads beforehand. Make a list of the things you want from each catalogue. Include in your list the price of each item, where they can be purchased, and whether they can be purchased online. This will give you a kind of master shopping list so you can see all of your options.

Tip 4: Prioritize Your Shopping List

Don’t buy everything on your master shopping list. Instead, number the items on your list from most to least important. That way you can match your final shopping list to the budget you made in the first step. Planning your Black Friday shopping trip to this extent can also help you not impulse buy the whole store.

Tip 5: Make Black Friday Shopping a Bonding Experience

There’s no reason shopping on Black Friday can’t be a fun bonding experience with you and your fellow shopping lovers. Make an event out of it by preparing together and using all that line waiting to talk with and bond with your shopping buddies. You can also make the experience a fun time to bond by going out to eat a victory meal once all your shopping is done!

Tip 6: Plan Your Shopping Trips

Actually schedule and plan your shopping trip. Make a shared schedule with everyone you’re shopping with and mark down what order you plan on visiting each store. That way you won’t be left debating where you should go first when you get in the car to start your Black Friday trip. Instead you’ll already have it all figured out.

Tip 7: Skip the Doorbusters

Instead of going Black Friday shopping when everyone else is out flooding the roads and the stores, feel free to go shopping way earlier or way later than everyone else! If you go after the bustle you may not find as many things still in stock, but your overall shopping experience will be much calmer.

black friday shopping tips

Tip 8: Don’t Forget to Shop Online

Don’t forget that you can shop online too. In fact, you can find a lot of Black Friday deals that are exclusive to the stores website now, meaning you have to purchase some things online to get the Black Friday deal. There’s also the matter of stores and roads becoming extremely overcrowded every Black Frida, so if you can find what you want online instead, you’ll save yourself a lot of hassle and help keep the stores and roads less congested.

Tip 9: Don’t Miss the Deals Around Black Friday

A lot of stores now have Black Friday deals that happen before and after the actual day. In some cases you might even be able to skip shopping on Friday to go to those sales instead. When planning you trip and checking out the deals around Black Friday, don’t miss the sales going on before and after Black Friday too.

Tip 10: Don’t Use a Cart

Don’t use a cart if you can. It’ll just take up space in the already crowded aisles and keep you from being speedy as you maneuver through the store. That being said, if you’re buying something heavy or big, don’t hurt yourself by trying to carry it.

Tip 11: Dress for the Occasion

Make sure you dress right for Black Friday shopping. It is going to be cold outside, but warm inside the busy stores. You are also going to be on your feet a lot and possibly need to carry a lot of shopping bags around. Keep all of these factors in mind when you choose your Black Friday battle outfit. Wear shoes that have thick insoles (like your running shoes) so your feet will have adequate support for standing in line for a long time. Wear warm, long sleeve clothes for if you need to wait outside before stores open, but don’t wear anything too bulky or too warm since you’ll also be waiting in long lines inside hot, overpopulated stores as well. Wearing long sleeves with a vest or medium sized jacket should give you the right blend. Try to not carry a purse while Black Friday shopping since you want to travel light. Instead carry a small, pocket-friendly wallet, or a smaller purse so you can travel light.

Tip 12: Check the Deals are Worth It

Make sure the prices are actually a worthwhile deal before you go through all the trouble to get them. Sometimes similar deals come up later in the year when shopping isn’t so crazy. It’s also a good idea to know the original price of the item so you can see if you’re actually saving all that much.

Tip 13: Bring Your Own Shopping Bags

By bringing your own shopping bags you can help out the environment a little, and also make your life easier. With your own shopping bags you can carry around the items you want to purchase more easily while you finish shopping and wait in those long lines. But carrying a bag will leave you with a lot more mobility in the store then a cart will.

Tip 14: Form Teams

Make teams so that you can divide and conquer your Black Friday shopping goals. You can send your teams to different stores so you can all finish the shopping a lot faster than if you all had to go to each store together.

Tip 15: Do in Store Pick Up

Take advantage of the in store pick up feature when you can. Even on Black Friday some store will still let you buy online and pick up in the store. Then you can possibly avoid some lines!

Tip 16: Be Mindful of Your Funds

Make sure you keep track of your funds and how much you’re spending at each store. For instance, if you’re paying in cash, keep in mind how much cash you have so you don’t suddenly find yourself short once you finally make it to the cashier. If you’re paying with a card then make sure you know how much is on it so you don’t end up with any overdraft fees.

Tip 17: Bring Snacks!

Bring a snack! Keep yourself energized and fueled so that your Black Friday shopping experience can be a positive one. Having snacks can help your team stay positive too.

The Ultimate Guide to Black Friday Ads

black friday store hours

Check out the Best Buy Black Friday Ad

Best Buy Black Friday Store Hours:

Thursday 28: opens at 5:00pm

Friday 29: closes at 1:00am. The doors open again at 8:00am.

Best Buy Thanksgiving Store Hours:

Thanksgiving Day (Thursday 28): opens at 5:00pm until 1:00am the next morning

Check out the Target Black Friday Ad

Best Buy Black Friday Store Hours:

Thursday 28: opens at 5:00pm

Friday 29: closes at 1:00am. The doors open again at 7:00am.

Best Buy Thanksgiving Store Hours:

Thanksgiving Day (Thursday 28): open from 5:00pm until 1:00am the next morning.

Check out the Walmart Black Friday Ad

Best Buy Black Friday Store Hours:

Thursday 28: opens at 6:00pm

Best Buy Thanksgiving Store Hours:

Thanksgiving Day (Thursday 28): opens at 6:00pm

Check out the Amazon Black Friday Ad

Best Buy Black Friday Store Hours:

Thursday 28: all day online

Friday 29: all day online

Best Buy Thanksgiving Store Hours:

Thanksgiving Day (Thursday 28): all day online

Check out the Kohls Black Friday Ad

Best Buy Black Friday Store Hours:

Thursday 28: open from 5:00pm to 12:00am (midnight)

Friday 29: open from 8:00am to 12:00am (midnight)

Best Buy Thanksgiving Store Hours:

Thanksgiving Day (Thursday 28): open from 5:00pm to 12:00am (midnight)

Check out the Home Depot Black Friday Ad

Best Buy Black Friday Store Hours:

Friday 29: opens at 6:00am

Best Buy Thanksgiving Store Hours:

Thanksgiving Day (Thursday 28): closed all day

Check out the Costco Black Friday Ad

Best Buy Black Friday Store Hours:

Friday 29: opens at 9:00am

Best Buy Thanksgiving Store Hours:

Thanksgiving Day (Thursday 28): closed all day

Check out the GameStop Black Friday Ad

Best Buy Black Friday Store Hours:

Thursday 28: open from 3:00pm to 10:00pm

Friday 29: Opens at 7:00am

Best Buy Thanksgiving Store Hours:

Thanksgiving Day (Thursday 28): open from 3:00pm to 10:00pm

 
Black Friday is a fun and exciting time. There are so many important deals that you can take advantage of, and with a personal loan you can make sure you have enough funds to get all the Black Friday discounts you need. But while you do your shopping this year remember that it’s still the season of giving and gratitude, so be kind to your fellow shoppers.


READ MORE

Use these tips to get even more deals this Black Friday, “Find the Best Black Friday Sales with These 5 Tips.”

Read about what to do AFTER Black Friday shopping, “The Aftermath of Black Friday.”


When is Thanksgiving this Year? 2020

when is thanksgiving

When is Thanksgiving?

Thanksgiving is Thursday, November 26, 2020

Thanksgiving is a great time of year. It’s a time to come together with our loved ones, put our differences aside, and be grateful for all we have. It’s a time to be together with friends and family and to remember all our blessings. Thanksgiving first began in 1863 when Abraham Lincoln made this day of thanks an official holiday. America was in the middle of the Civil War, but despite the suffering and hardship of war, Abraham Lincoln wanted to bring the nation together in remembrance of all they had to be grateful for.

In a way, creating the Thanksgiving holiday was another one of President Lincoln’s efforts to join the divided nation again as he called upon all Americans to:

“commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility and Union.”

(Abraham Lincoln Online, Proclamation of Thanksgiving)

It was then decided that Thanksgiving is on the last Thursday in November each year, and it’s been bringing families and friends together for some quality mealtime ever since. But to make this holiday special there is a lot of things to do! There’s preparing to host guests and there’s all that Thanksgiving food to plan and prepare. Hopefully this master Thanksgiving prep checklist can help you get everything done in time this year.

Now that you know that this year’s Thanksgiving is Thursday the 28th, you can start preparing! If you want to be a stellar Thanksgiving host this year then there are a few things you’ll need to do to get ready. When there’s so much to get done it helps to have a master checklist so you don’t forget anything important:

Thanksgiving Master Checklist

when is thanksgiving

If you’re hosting Thanksgiving at your house this year, then you don’t just have food to prepare, you have a house to prepare as well. A good host has a clean house that’s ready to meet every need a guest might have. For instance, if you’re having people stay over you’ll want to prepare sleeping arrangements that are comfortable, you’ll want to have clean, visitor-friendly bathrooms that aren’t cluttered with your personal hair products, you’ll want to add some fall decor to give your house the right feel, and you’ll want to plan the menu and cooking so you’re prepared and able to get dinner done on time.

  • Clean house
  • Put up fall decorations
  • Prepare the guest bedrooms/guest sleeping arrangements
  • Plan your Thanksgiving menu
  • Do the grocery shopping
  • Make cooking/baking schedule and assignments

Thanksgiving Host Cleaning Checklist

Part of being a good host is to have a clean house to host in. To keep all your preThanksgiving chores organized, use a free Thanksgiving cleaning checklist by clicking on the image to the right.

thanksgiving cleaning checklist

    • Wipe down kitchen

Wipe down all the counters, the sink, the exterior of the fridge, the cabinets, and any other surfaces that could use cleaning and sanitizing before you begin preparing all the food.

    • Clean the oven

One thing that can ruin Thanksgiving Day is a burning oven, smoking up the house. You can avoid this by giving your oven a good cleaning before the big cooking day. You can run a cleaning cycle on the oven, or you can clean it more manually by using oven cleaner or a baking soda, vinegar mixture and a hard brush.

    • Clean the stovetop

How you clean your stovetop will depend on whether you have a gas or electric stove. Just remember to take apart what you can and get every nook and cranny.

    • Clean the dishwasher

You’re going to have a lot of dishes to do during Thanksgiving so it’ll help to run a quick cleaning cycle on your dishwasher. It’s super easy to do, just place a cup of white vinegar in the top rack, or sprinkle a cup of baking soda in the bottom of the dishwasher and run a hot water cycle. This’ll get rid of any grease, hard water stains, or odors and help your dishes come out clean every time.

    • Organize and declutter the kitchen

Our kitchens can get cluttered, but you don’t want anything in your way when it comes time to cook and bake. This may include making more counter space in your kitchen or going through the pantry closet to make sure you know what you do and don’t have.

    • Organize and declutter the living room

Another place you’ll spend a lot of time during Thanksgiving is in the living room. So make sure there isn’t unnecessary stuff kicking around so that your guests can comfortably relax there too.

    • Clean the couches

People often forget to clean their couches, but they need some cleaning care as well. You can do some regular cleaning by vacuuming the cushions, not forgetting to vacuum under the cushions as well. You can get an even deeper clean on your couch by using a shampooer.

    • Tidy bedrooms

If you’re having guests stay over for the holiday season then you’ll want to clean up the guest bedrooms (if you have them) or arrange the area where guests will be sleeping and staying. Make sure you provide the basic things guests need, like blankets, pillows, fresh bath towels, toiletries, and the Wi-Fi password.

    • Clean bathrooms

Make sure your bathroom is not only clean and smelling fresh, but also make sure it’s free of your personal bathroom clutter. While guests are around, it’s a good idea to keep your personal bathroom products off the counter so your bathroom is tidy and guest ready.

    • Floors

It’s a good idea to tackle your floors last and all at once. That way you can go through with the broom on all your hard floors, and then tackle all your carpet with the vacuum. Don’t forget to mop at the end to really free your house of dust and grime.

    • Catch up on laundry

You don’t want to have loads of laundry in the way, and you want blankets and towels to be ready for guests. It’s also always polite to provide fresh clean sheets for guests, so it’s a good idea to catch up on all your laundry before guests arrive.

Plan the Thanksgiving Menu

Plan your Thanksgiving menu by choosing appetizers, sides, the main dish, beverages, and desserts. Everyone has their own traditional Thanksgiving dishes and this is your chance to plan those out and include everybody’s favorite Thanksgiving food.

Likewise, everyone has their own traditions about when to serve Thanksgiving dinner. But if you’re new to hosting Thanksgiving you may be wondering when to serve Thanksgiving dinner. Generally, Thanksgiving dinner is served in the early afternoon between 1:00pm and 3:00pm.

Thanksgiving Appetizers

You don’t have to have appetizers, but a lot of people don’t really eat before the main Thanksgiving meal so having some predinner appetizers laid out can help tide people over until the main course starts. The following appetizer ideas are realistic for Thanksgiving Day because they aren’t too carby, meaning they won’t fill your guests up too much before the actual meal.

  • Put together a cheese board
  • Put out some light fruits like grapes or clementines
  • Chips and dip
  • Veggie tray and dip
Thanksgiving Side Dishes
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Sweet potato casserole
  • Green bean casserole
  • Macaroni and cheese
  • Potato salad
  • Stuffing
  • Vegetables like cream corn
  • Gravy
  • Cranberry sauce
  • Salad
  • Dinner rolls
Thanksgiving Dinner

Some people prefer having traditional roast turkey for Thanksgiving while others prefer ham, or going out to eat instead. The beauty of the holidays is that you can celebrate them however you choose. You can also get creative with your main course and make it stuffed or use a special recipe for optimal flavor.

  • Turkey in the oven
  • Turkey in the crockpot
  • Turkey in the instant pot
  • Ham in the oven
  • Ham in the crockpot
  • Ham in the instant pot
Thanksgiving Desserts
    • Pumpkin bread
    • Pie

There are endless types of pies you can make like, pumpkin, chocolate, apple, cherry, blueberry, shoofly pie, and pecan pie

  • Apple crisp
  • Pumpkin cheesecake roll
  • Rice pudding
  • Cobbler
  • Cookies
  • Creamy jello
  • Cranberry fluff

Now that you’ve decided what foods you want to include in your Thanksgiving menu, you’ll want to actually schedule when you’ll do all your grocery shopping, when you’ll prepare each dish, and who will prepare each food if you have helpers in the kitchen. It can help to have a specific Thanksgiving calendar plan to write out all the details of your preparation.

Planning your Thanksgiving out now can also help you save on Thanksgiving dinner this year. By planning beforehand you can even shop for groceries online in order to better budget how much you spend on food this year. But in either case, you can always use a small personal loan that you can pay off in just a few short months to help you pay for Thanksgiving this year. Click on the image below to print out your own free Thanksgiving week calendar.

thanksgiving day

There’s a lot to do to get ready for Thanksgiving, but don’t forget the reason for the season. The whole purpose of Thanksgiving is to be together with the ones you love, reconnect across long distances and after long periods of time, and take a moment to appreciate one another and all we have.

We’d also love to hear from you about your own Thanksgiving traditions! This can be anything from what foods you always make to other Thanksgiving activities you always do. Share this article and then share your favorite Thanksgiving traditions.

 

READ MORE
Visit the Thanksgiving Page on Delish’s website right now to get actual recipes and even more great food ideas.

Food Network also has a Thanksgiving Recipes page.

Check out these interesting statistics about what time people serve their Thanksgiving meal.

Chase Personal Loan

Chase offers a lot of services, but Personal Loans aren’t one of them. You can find auto loans and mortgages with Chase but if you want the Flexibility of a Personal Loan you may have to look elsewhere for your loan.

Does Chase offer personal loans? The simple answer is NO, Chase does not currently offer personal loans.

Many banks don’t actually offer personal loans. Like most banks Chase also doesn’t offer personal loans. Instead Chase mainly offers saving and checking account services. The closest services to a personal loan they offer are credit cards, auto loans, and mortgages, but they don’t technically offer personal loans. But don’t worry because there are other personal loan options out there that we’ll touch on later in this article.

Chase Credit Cards: A Quick Look

Pros Cons
some of their cards offer cash back and bonus points some of their cards only let you earn back on certain things like dining and travel
some of their cards let you earn back 1.5% to 6 times on purchases some of their cards have fees up to $95
some cards have no annual fees

Chase Auto Loans: A Quick Look

Pros Cons
you can refinance the loan you need to be a Chase customer with a checking account for refinancing options
loan terms are 12 to 84 months you might want to pay back the loan in less than a year
loan amounts are $4,000 to $600,000 you might need an even smaller loan
great for buying a new car or refinancing existing car loan not great for other personal reasons

Basically, Chase is a great place to go if you’re looking for auto loans in order to buy a new car, or if you’re looking for different credit cards that offer an array of benefits. But if you are looking for a more flexible loan that you can use for a larger variety of personal reasons then you’ll need to look at other loan providers.

Who are Chase Loans and Credit Cards Perfect For?

The Chase auto loan is great if you need to purchase a new car or refinance your car payments. Likewise, Chase credit cards are great if you travel a lot and want to accumulate benefits for all the money you spend on traveling expenses. If you need a large auto loan or credit cards great for travelers, and you meet the below requirements, then Chase may be perfect for you.

  • If you have a high credit score
  • If you need a large auto loan
  • If you have a lot of travel expenses for tickets, hotels, and dining
  • If you already have a Chase account

Who Should NOT Get a Chase Loan or Credit Card?

If you don’t meet the above requirements, or you’re just looking for a quicker, smaller loan that you can use for something besides a car, then you may want to keep shopping for your perfect loan. If any of the listed items below represent you, then you should consider a different personal loan provider.

  • If you need a smaller loan
  • If you want to pay back the loan in less than a year
  • If you don’t already have a Chase account
  • If you need your loan quickly, or that same day
  • If you have a low credit score
  • If you can’t afford a hard credit pull application on your credit score
  • If you have personal reason beyond cars for needing a loan

An Alternative to a Chase Personal Loan

Check City offers a different kind of personal loan. So if the features and requirements present in Chase’s loan and credit services don’t work for you, a Check City personal loan might be your answer.

Reasons to Get a Check City Personal Loan:

personal loan for you

  • Check City is a direct lender
  • Check City is also a state licensed lender
  • The application process is quick and simple
  • You don’t need a high credit score to apply
  • There are no origination fees
  • You can get your loan TODAY
How to Apply for a Check City Personal Loan

Check City personal loans are incredibly easy to use. Just visit the Check City Personal Loan Page and you can quickly apply for your loan online, at a nearby Check City store, or even over the phone!

All you need to apply for the loan is:

  • A government ID
  • Proof of bank account
  • Proof of direct deposit
  • Proof of income
  • A valid phone number

Apply for a Check City Loan Online by clicking HERE.

Find a conveniently located Check City Store by clicking HERE.

Or call Check City’s Loans By Phone number: 800-404-0254

Check City personal loans have a fast and easy process, and if you go into a Check City store to apply, you can actually walk out with your personal loan funds that very same day! Check City personal loans are great for loan customers that need a quick, easy to use, smaller personal loan that they can pay back in a matter of months instead of years. They’re also a great loan option for customers with lower credit scores since Check City doesn’t pull a traditional credit report when processing your application.

LOAN COMPARISON CHART

Check City Personal Loans Discover Personal Loans Wells Fargo Personal Loans

Chase Auto Loans
Amount $300 to $3,000 $2,500 to $35,000 $3,000 to $100,000 $4,000 to $600,000
Rates lower APR than our payday loans 6.99% to 24.99% APR 5.49% to 22.99% APR depends
Fees no origination fees no origination fees, no closing costs no origination fees, no prepayment penalties depends
Terms 6 months 36 to 84 months (3 to 7 years) 12 to 84 months (1 to 7 years) 12 to 84 months
Min. Credit Score Check City doesn’t pull a traditional credit check, and if you have a low credit score you can still apply for a Check City personal loan 660 600 high credit score

 

When you think of loans you often think about the requirements you need to meet in order for you application to get approved. But you have loan requirements too! Everyone is looking for something different in a personal loan, like the ability to refinance the loan later, or the ability to get the loan right away. You can find all these key qualities with a Check City Personal Loan!

Whatever your own personal loan requirements might be, you should always study up on what features each loan provides before making a choice.

 
READ MORE
Learn more about the usefulness of loans, “The Usefulness of Loans from Large to Small.”

Budget like a boss by reading, “Budgeting in 4 Easy Steps.”

*The information found in this article comes from the lenders’ websites and NerdWallet reviews at the time of posting.

Wells Fargo Personal Loan

Wells Fargo offers Personal Loans up to $100,000. But if you don’t have a 600 Credit Score and you aren’t already a Wells Fargo customer is it the right loan for you?

Not all loans are created equal. Each loan has their own features and requirements. That is why it’s important to do a bit of research while you’re shopping for loans before you pick one, so you get the loan that makes the most sense for your own personal needs.

Wells Fargo Personal Loans: A Quick Look

Wells Fargo offers personal loans from $3,000 to $100,000 with an APR range from 5.49% to 22.99% with no origination fees or prepayment penalties. They also offer a wide range of payback periods from as little as 12 months up to 84 months. They also offer special benefits for loan customers that already have a Wells Fargo account.

Maximum Personal Loan: $100,000

Minimum Personal Loan: $3,000

Rates: 5.49% to 22.99% APR

Fees: There are no origination fees or prepayment penalties

Terms: 12 to 84 months (1 to 7 years)

When: The next business day, if your loan is approved.

Basically, the Wells Fargo personal loan is a larger loan with a short or long-term payment plan. This loan is often used to consolidate debts, to make a large purchase (like home improvements), or to cover emergency expenses. They also offer a competitive fixed rate, fixed term, and fixed monthly payments. Their loans also don’t require collateral.

Who are Wells Fargo Personal Loans Perfect For?

The Wells Fargo personal loan is great if you need to consolidate heavy debts with high interest rates. It’s also a good loan if you need a larger loan for things like major home improvements or college tuition. If you need a much larger loan and you meet the below requirements, then this loan may be perfect for you.

  • If you have a credit score of 600 or higher
  • If you need a large loan amount
  • If you need to consolidate larger debt amounts
  • If you need to make larger purchases
  • If you already have a Wells Fargo account

Who Should NOT Get a Wells Fargo Personal Loan?

If you don’t meet the above requirements, or you’re just looking for a quicker, smaller personal loan, then you may want to keep shopping for your perfect loan. If any of the listed items below represent you, then you should consider a different personal loan provider.

  • If you need a smaller loan
  • If you want to pay back the loan in less than a year
  • If you don’t already have a Wells Fargo account
  • If you need your loan quickly, or that same day
  • If you have a low credit score
  • If your credit score can’t afford a hard credit pull application
Wells Fargo Personal Loans Pros and Cons List

Though personal loans with Wells Fargo may be a great option for some, there are some reasons they may not be the best loan fit for others.

Pros Cons
You can get a really large loan of up to $100,000 You can’t get a small loan of less than $3,000
They offer secure loans Their secure loans have a $75 origination fee
There are no origination fees or prepayment penalties You need a credit score of at least 600
Their loan application involves a heavy credit score check
The application requires a lot of information

An Alternative to Wells Fargo Personal Loans

Check City offers a different kind of personal loan. So if the features and requirements present in a Wells Fargo personal loan don’t work for you, a Check City personal loan might be your answer.

check city personal loan

Reasons to Get a Check City Personal Loan
  • Check City is a direct lender
  • Check City is also a state licensed lender
  • The application process is quick and simple
  • You don’t need a high credit score to apply
  • There are no origination fees
  • You can get your loan TODAY
How to Apply for a Check City Personal Loan

Check City personal loans are incredibly easy to use. Just visit the Check City Personal Loan Page and you can quickly apply for your loan online, at a nearby Check City store, or even over the phone!

All you need to apply for the loan is:

  • A government ID
  • Proof of bank account
  • Proof of direct deposit
  • Proof of income
  • A valid phone number

Apply for a Check City Loan Online by clicking HERE.

Find a conveniently located Check City Store by clicking HERE.

Or call Check City’s Loans By Phone number: 800-404-0254

Check City personal loans have a fast and easy process, and if you go into a Check City store to apply, you can actually walk out with your personal loan funds that very same day! Check City personal loans are great for loan customers that need a quick, easy to use, smaller personal loan that they can pay back in a matter of months instead of years. They’re also a great loan option for customers with lower credit scores since Check City doesn’t pull a traditional credit report when processing your application.

LOAN COMPARISON CHART

Check City Personal Loans Discover Personal Loans Wells Fargo Personal Loans
Amount $300 to $3,000 $2,500 to $35,000 $3,000 to $100,000
Rates lower APR than our payday loans 6.99% to 24.99% APR 5.49% to 22.99% APR
Fees no origination fees no origination fees, no closing costs no origination fees, no prepayment penalties
Terms 6 months 36 to 84 months (3 to 7 years) 12 to 84 months (1 to 7 years)
Min. Credit Score Check City doesn’t pull a traditional credit check, and if you have a low credit score you can still apply for a Check City personal loan 660 600

 

When you think of loans you often think about the requirements you need to meet in order for you application to get approved. But you have loan requirements too! Everyone is looking for something different in a personal loan, like the ability to refinance the loan later, or the ability to get the loan right away. You can find all these key qualities with a Check City Personal Loan!

Whatever your own personal loan requirements might be, you should always study up on what features each loan provides before making a choice.

 
READ MORE
Learn more about the usefulness of loans, “The Usefulness of Loans from Large to Small.”

Budget like a boss by reading, “Budgeting in 4 Easy Steps.”

*The information found in this article comes from the lenders’ websites and NerdWallet reviews at the time of posting.

Happy HoliDeals with Amazon Daily Deals!

amazon deals of the day

There are lots of great deals you can take advantage of every single day, with Amazon’s Daily Deals! You won’t believe some of the great things you can find. Every Tuesday we highlight some of our favorite Amazon Daily Deal buys. Here are some of our top picks from today:

*The prices shown below are the sale prices listed at the time of posting.

Dash Rapid Egg Cooker

dash egg cooker

6 Egg Capacity

Current Sale Price: $14.99
Originally: $19.99
You Save: $5.00! (25% off)

12 Egg Capacity

Current Sale Price: $39.99
Originally: $19.99
You Save: $20.00! (50% off)

Dash is the same brand that brought you the mini waffle maker—the same mini waffle maker you can use make easy keto-friendly waffles known as chaffles. The Dash egg cooker comes with either a 6 or 12 egg capacity and comes in black, white, red, yellow, and aqua colors. It will cook hard boiled eggs, poached eggs, scrambled eggs, or omelets. It also has an auto shut off feature to make it an extra safe kitchen appliance. By getting the Dash egg cooker you can make perfect eggs with no hassle at all!

Mr. Coffee Coffee Maker

coffee maker

Current Sale Price: $20.39
Originally: $29.99
You Save: $9.60! (32% off)

This programmable coffee maker comes in black, with an easy to open filter basket for easy cleaning. This coffee maker is exactly what you need to manage your busy mornings. With it’s programmable features you can actually set the coffee maker on a specific schedule so you can literally wake up to a warm cup of coffee! It will also auto shut off after an hour so you don’t have to worry about forgetting it when you’re in a rush in the mornings. You can also pause it when you need to grab a cup quickly before it’s done brewing, and it comes with a coffee pot that holds up to 5 cups of coffee.

Reusable Sandwich Bags

reusable sandwich bags

Current Sale Price: $14.39
Originally: $29.99
You Save: $15.60! (52% off)

These eco-friendly reusable bags are just what your kitchen is missing. Not only can you help the environment by buying these reusable bags but you can also make your life in the kitchen easier and save money in the long run. By purchasing reusable sandwich bags you won’t have to keep buying plastic ones every time you run out. These reusable storage bags come in a pack of 10, with 2 gallon bags, 4 sandwich bags, and 4 snack bags. The bags are thick and leakproof making them perfect for many purposes like, packing lunches, storing things in the freezer, marinating meats, or for storing other foods. They’re safe to use in the freezer and will protect your foods from freezer burn while helping you stay organized.

Robot Vacuum

robot vacuum

Current Sale Price: $217.94
Originally: $429.98
You Save: $212.04! (49%)

Robot vacuums may be one of the most useful Amazon purchases you’ll ever make. Imagine never having to sweep or vacuum your floors again because your robot vacuum will do it for you! Not only will this vacuum handle cleaning your floors, but you can also control it easily with an app and set it on a schedule so your floors get cleaned every day. You can also use voice command to control your robot vacuum if you have Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. The Deebot robot vacuum works on both hard floors and carpets, has high efficiency cleaning paths, and you can even increase the suction power setting for even deeper cleaning. This particular deal today even comes with a fee echo dot!

USB Power Strip

power strip

Current Sale Price: $15.29
Originally: $17.99
You Save: $2.70! (15% off)

This power strip isn’t like any other power strip. Along with it’s 3 regular outlets, it has 3 USB ports. The extension cord is also 4.5 feet in length and uses an angled, flat plug that can easily fit behind furniture and won’t cover up the whole outlet. You can even mount this power strip to the wall, making it the perfect choice for your office, bedside, or wherever you want to keep your charging station because you can plug everything into this one port. It’s also compact in size so you can even carry it around with you while you’re traveling so you can always have enough plug ins wherever you go.

Fire TV Stick

fire tv

Current Sale Price: $34.99
Originally: $39.99
You Save: $5.00! (13% off)

The Fire TV stick comes with an Alexa voice remote so you can control your TV with your voice. You can stream anything with the Fire TV, from Disney+ to Netflix, Hulu, HBO and so much more. The new Fire TV remote now come with a designated power, volume, and mute button so use this deal on the new Fire TV stick and remote while it’s still on sale. The Fire TV is also a great gift idea for the upcoming gift-giving season.

Dog Camera

home security camera

Current Sale Price: $33.99
Originally: $69.99
You Save: $36.00! (51% off)

It never hurts to be a little cautious when it comes to our home, our kids, and our pets. This security camera can be used not only to keep an eye on your pets while you’re away, but also to keep an eye on your home, and your children too! It can even be used as a form of family home movie maker. The Tenvis security camera comes with motion detection that will alert your phone when it detects something, and night vision that can see for up to 32 feet so you can keep the perfect eye on your house. It also comes with 2 way audio so you can speak to those at home while you’re out. This home camera system is an ideal choice too because it has 1080P full HD quality video and can swivel it’s camera head in every direction so you don’t miss a thing.

 

Amazon Monthly Book Deals

Did you know Amazon has kindle deals every month?! It’s important to keep the joy of reading alive in your life and having your own library to go to is the key. With kindle e-readers this job is easy. Amazon also has great sales on great books going on all the time, and on audiobooks too. So reading lots of new things each year doesn’t have to cost a lot.

Duck and Hippo Give Thanks

by Jonathan London and Illustrated by Andrew Joyner

kid books

Current Sale Price:$9.00 hardcover
Originally:$17.99 (digital) $12.95 (print)
You Save:$8.99! (50% off)

Children’s Books

Duck and Hippo Give Thanks is a great book to get your kids for this Thanksgiving season. Let them read all about Duck and Hippo as they celebrate Thanksgiving with friends and learn what giving thanks is all about.

The Butterfly Garden

by Dot Hutchison

amazon books

Current Sale Price:$6.39 paperback
Originally:$15.95
You Save:$9.56! (60% off)

Thriller’s and Suspense

The Butterfly Garden isn’t at all what it seems. The gardener is a twisted man bent on keeping beauty confined in his beautiful garden until he is discovered. FBI agents go through this suspenseful case along with survivor Maya and her puzzling tale.

The Road Beyond Ruin

by Gemma Liviero

amazon deals

Current Sale Price:$7.48 paperback
Originally:$14.95
You Save:$7.47! (50% off)

Fiction

The Road Beyond Ruin takes place in 1945 when an Italian POW named Stefan takes an orphaned young boy under his wing. As they try to journey home they find shelter in a kind man’s house, but eventually find that things aren’t all what they seem.

The Paper Magician

by Charlie N. Holmberg

amazon book deals

Current Sale Price: $7.48 paperback
Originally:$14.95
You Save: $7.47! (50% off)

Fantasy

Ceony Twill is a recent graduate of a magical school and now she’s on to an apprenticeship with the Magician Emery Thane. With him she’ll learn paper magic and eventually use all she’s learned to take on a dark magician and save her teacher’s life.

 

Sometimes deals and sales are the way that we get things we really need. You may especially depend on sales when you’re in college, or just starting out on your own, or in a new place. So when you find something you really need on sale, and payday is just a couple days too late, that can be really frustrating.

Luckily Check City can help you out with a quick and easy Payday Loan so that you can take advantage of important deals regardless of when your payday comes.

 

Share with us what deals you snagged today by using the hashtags #amazondailydeals #checkcity.

 

READ MORE

Make clothes shopping not just easier, but cheaper too, by doing your clothes shopping online, “Shopping for Your Clothes Online.”

Get ahead on your Christmas shopping this year, “4 Reasons to Start Early Christmas Shopping.”

Learn how to get thrifty with all your gift shopping this season, “Thrifty Gift Shopping.”

Read all about the post Christmas online shopping addiction and how to you can save yourself from overbuying this year, “The Post-Christmas Online Shopping Addiction.”

Save on all your holiday shopping with these tips, “Saving while Online Shopping for the Holidays.”


Book Review: The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey

book review

Dave Ramsey is a best selling author of many popular self-help books about getting your finances together. He’s inspired many with his simple, no-hassle philosophies on how to manage money.

He also has a radio talk show called the Dave Ramsey Show, that you can listen to anywhere you listen to podcasts. He even started his own company built on his financial philosophies called Financial Peace University. Dave Ramsey and his colleagues have loads of resources you can find helpful in your own personal money management journey. Whether you are managing a household or a small business, Dave Ramsey has the financial advice you need to be successful and smart with your funds.

Explore this Article

Today we’re going to take a focused look into one of Dave Ramsey’s most prolific publications, The Total Money Makeover: A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness. You’ve heard of fitness journeys and makeovers that change your style into something fresh and new, but Dave Ramsey takes all that and puts a financial spin onto it. With Dave Ramsey’s baby step plan you can exercise your financial abilities in ways you never thought possible and finally get into shape where your wallet is concerned.

What Kind of Book is The Total Money Makeover?

book cover

The Total Money Makeover is written as a self-help book. It’s even been compared to popular self-help books like, Your Best Life Now and 7 Habits of Highly Effective People because of the reader-friendly way it is written. It’s an engaging book with lots of real-world examples and stories from real people who have actually gone through Dave Ramsey’s baby steps and seen results. These short anecdotal stories throughout the book help all of Dave Ramsey’s concepts make clear common sense.

The book also includes a lot of motivational help along with the tips and advice. One of the biggest factors that holds people back from taking full control over their finances is the proper motivation and encouragement to make necessary changes to their lifestyle. Dave Ramsey helps with that too, giving you the fresh outlook you need to understand your goal and the rewards you can gain.

Dave Ramsey is also a Christian, so his books often have a religious undertone. So you may find him referencing Bible verses every so often in this book, and tackling religious views and practices with regard to money as well.

What’s in the Book?

The Total Money Makeover is essentially a step-by-step guide for how to go about your own personal money makeover journey. These steps are based on Dave Ramsey’s key money philosophies. Dave Ramsey has strict beliefs about not ever using debt, loans, or credit cards. He believes that our society today is too dependent on credit and that true financial freedom only comes when you live a completely debt free life. So the first steps in his plan are all about helping you get out of debt, and then setting you up to never get into debt again.

Simple and straightforward advice.

Dave Ramsey’s book became so popular probably because of how easy it is to follow his clearly set plan. Each step is specific enough to leave no doubts about what exactly you need to do, making his plan one that anyone can follow and find success. It also helps that he is never vague about his advice, but rather he is extremely straightforward, open, and honest.

Dave Ramsey has no get-rich-quick schemes. He’s more about using honest work, responsibility, and common sense to reach your goals. So you won’t find any crazy secrets to financial stability and success in his book, you’ll just finally learn to implement the basics in a way that really works.

A change in perspective.

Another reason people enjoy Dave Ramsey’s teachings is because he doesn’t pretend that money is what brings happiness. He’s realistic and believes that money is a tool to create stability and contentment in our lives, not the secret solution to all our problems.

He eloquently tackles many mental barriers and misconceptions many of us have about money, and works to not only change your behavior with money, but your perspective about money as well. One thing he talks about a lot is getting over the need to “keep up with the Joneses.” Often in life we compare ourselves to others in unhealthy ways, and sometimes those comparisons can lead us to make poor financial decisions for superficial reasons. So, when you read the Total Money Makeover be prepared to gain a whole new outlook on the purpose of money, and break free from comparing yourself to others.

The Money Makeover Baby Steps:

The main event of this self-help read are the baby steps the reader can take to reach financial peace and freedom. You can read a more detailed article about each of the 7 baby steps that Dave Ramsey will go through in this book, but we’ll go over a quick outline of those steps here too.

1. Emergency Fund

The first step in Dave Ramsey’s 7 step plan is to basically get your financial life in order. The road to stability starts by setting up your finance in a certain way. This begins with setting up an emergency fund. You can start with at least $1,000 in your emergency fund but eventually you’ll want to work your way toward having at least 6 months’ worth of expenses in your emergency fund at all times.

2. Debts

Once you start getting your emergency fund in place, it’s time to focus all other monetary efforts toward annihilating all your debts. He goes into more detail about this in the book. For example, he suggests you start with your smallest debts first and work your way up to your larger ones. He also recommends you save paying off your mortgage for last. But eventually the idea is to throw everything you can at your debts until they are all completely wiped out.

3. Build Wealth

Now it’s time to build wealth and continue saving. Since Dave Ramsey argues you should pay for everything in cash, continually building up your financial stores is an important aspect of the Dave Ramsey lifestyle. You have to have enough in savings to cover all your costs completely with cash.

In the book Dave Ramsey goes into more detail about what savings you should prioritize. He advises that you first complete your 6 months’ worth emergency fund if you haven’t gotten there already. Then he suggests you work toward saving for retirement and (if you have kids or plan on having kids) your children’s college funds.

Things You Can Do Differently:

Dave Ramsey’s primary goal in all of this is to help people get out of crippling debt and stay out of it. But there are modifications you can make to his more rigorous financial plan.

You can choose how much you want in your emergency fund.

If you’re a college student then putting aside even $1,000 may be more difficult for you. But that’s ok! Just put aside what you can. Even just adding $5 to $10 a month into an emergency fund is better than having no emergency fund at all.

Likewise, if you’re more settled in life it might be easier for you to put even more than $1,000 aside into an emergency fund. It really doesn’t matter how you do it, what matters most is that you start accumulating that safety fund in order to be more prepared for surprise expenses in the future.

You can still use credit cards and loans.

Dave Ramsey may believe in using only cash to pay for things but there are advantages to using credit cards and installment loans. When used responsibly using credit can help boost your credit score and get you the things you need to have a comfortable life. Credit cards can also provide lots of perks outside of boosting credit scores. Some credit cards come with special points that can go toward paying for things like groceries and traveling. So long as you understand your limits and include loans and credit payments in your carefully calculated budget and financial plans, you’ll be just fine.

Should I Read This Book?

You may now be wondering whether you should give this book a read or not. You should definitely read this book if . . .

  • you are in debt
  • you have trouble managing your money or realizing where your money goes
  • you have trouble making a budget

If you are looking for a book with more specific details about financial topics (like investing, or small businesses) then you should check out Dave Ramsey’s other books that go more in depth on complex financial topics. The Total Money Makeover doesn’t expound upon these topics too much since it was written more as a beginners guide to Dave Ramsey’s financial baby steps.


Read More


Review: The Total Money Makeover, by Dave Ramsey

The Total Money Makeover Review, by Dave Ramsey

Goodreads, The Total Money Makeover Review

The Best Books by Dave Ramsey

dave ramsey books

Dave Ramsey is a New York Times bestselling author, and a radio show host on The Dave Ramsey Show.

You can find his books wherever you buy books and you can listen to his radio show wherever you listen to podcasts or the radio. All of his books are also on Amazon, where you can find the kindle versions for your e-reader, or audiobook versions so you can learn all about finances on the go.

Table of Contents:

When getting into Dave Ramsey’s books people often wonder which book they should start with? If you want to read Dave Ramsey’s books in order there are a couple of routes you can go. You can read them in the order he wrote them, or read them in order of the things you learn in each book.

Dave Ramsey’s Books in Chronological Order:

If you want to read all of Dave Ramsey’s books in order, you can follow this master list of all his books so far.

1992 – Financial Peace

1993 – Dumping Debt: Breaking the Chains of Debt

1998 – The Financial Peace Planner

1998 – More Than Enough

1999 – More Than Enough: The Ten Keys to Changing Your Financial Destiny

2000 – How to Have More Than Enough: A Step-by-Step Guide to Creating Abundance

2002 – Cash Flow Planning: The Nuts and Bolts of Budgeting

2002 – Financial Peace for the Next Generation

2003 – The Total Money Makeover

2003 – The Great Misunderstanding: Unleashing the Power of Generous Giving

2004 – The Money Answer Book

2008 – Relating with Money: Nerds and Free Spirits Unite!

2011 – Dave Ramsey’s Complete Guide to Money

2011 – Dave Ramsey’s High Performance Achievement: Accomplishing the Extraordinary

2011 – EntreLeadership: 20 Years of Practical Business Wisdom from the Trenches

2014 – Smart Money Smart Kids

2014 – The Legacy Journey: A Radical View of Biblical Wealth and Generosity

Dave Ramsey Kid Books: Life Lessons with Junior

kid books

4.38 stars on Goodreads

Life Lessons with Junior is a series of children’s books written by Dave Ramsey. In them, he goes over all the most basic concepts of money management. Following Junior’s adventures can teach your kids all about monetary responsibility in clear simpler terms they’ll understand. He goes over everything from spending, debt, saving, work, giving, contentment, and integrity. Don’t miss out on gracing your household shelves with these great childhood reads with life lessons your kids will keep with them all their lives.

Smart Money Smart Kids

smart money smart kids

4.26 stars on Goodreads

Smart Money Smart Kids is a book that Dave Ramsey wrote with his daughter, Rachel Cruze. It is a book that teaches parents all about how to teach their kids about money. Part of good parenting is preparing your kids to be responsible, independent adults someday and a big part of being an adult is knowing how to manage your money. In this book, Dave Ramsey and his daughter will tell you all about how to raise kids who are smart about their money.

If you’re looking for something from Dave Ramsey that can specifically help your teens, check out his article, “A Teenager’s Guide to Building Wealth.”

Dave Ramsey also has a great recommendation for a college 101 bundle that includes Debt-Free Degree by Anthony O’Neal and The Graduate Survival Guide by Anthony O’Neal and Rachel Cruze.

Financial Peace

financial peace

4.31 on Goodreads

Financial Peace is one of Dave Ramsey’s first books, but he has since revisited the book, renaming it, Financial Peace Revisited: New Chapters on Marriage, Singles, Kids, and Families. This newer edition of his first book now includes more information for married couples, singles, children, and families. This book is also where he introduces the KISS rule, which stands for “Keep It Simple, Stupid.” It’s about getting out of debt and staying out of debt and the idea that you should use contentment to make your financial decisions. It also goes over how to manage money flow and investing.

One of the primary keys to understanding your finances and being able to take control of them is to manage the flow of your money. A lot of people just let money flow as it does, not really thinking too much about where it’s coming from and where it disappears. But if you learn to take full control of where all your funds are going then the problem of disappearing funds won’t happen to you and you can find financial peace.

The Total Money Makeover: A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness

total money makeover

4.28 stars on Goodreads

A large part of what makes makeovers so fun is the joy of reaching your goals and having a different life and a different you at the end of your journey. But have you ever thought about going on a similar makeover journey with your finances? Dave Ramsey will show you how.

The Total Money Makeover may be one of Dave Ramsey’s most popular books. He talks about some of his most famous money tips all while debunking myths about money. He brings a simpler, more straight forward approach to money management that anyone can understand and utilize in their life, no matter their financial situation. Dave Ramsey says that this book can work every time, all you have to do is follow his steps.

Complete Guide to Money

complete guide to money

4.44 stars on Goodreads

In this comprehensive guide Dave Ramsey goes over all his basic financial tips and lessons—How to Budget with Dave Ramsey, how to save, how to get out of debt, how to invest, mortgages, insurance, marketing, bargain hunting, and giving. Anything you want to know when it comes to money, you can find in this master guidebook.

The Money Answer Book

money answer book

3.82 stars on Goodreads

The Money Answer Book is a quick read with questions and answers to more than 100 common money questions! It’s a fast guide that goes over budget planning, retirement planning, shopping tips, saving for college, giving to charity, and so much more. If you need something you can quickly leaf through to find the answers you’re looking for.

How to Have More than Enough: A Step-By-Step Guide to Creating Abundance

more than enough

4.11 stars on Goodreads

How to Have More than Enough is the newest version of Dave Ramsey’s earlier book, More than Enough. Once you have gotten out of debt, he has more down to earth advice about building wealth. Dave Ramsey’s perspective is unique because he doesn’t just talk about monetary wealth, he talks about having a wealth of happiness. He takes it a step further by talking about finding wealth in relationships and in your family. In this book, he goes through 10 traits you need to be prosperous in life beyond your financial situations.

EntreLeardership

entreleadership

4.21 stars on Goodreads

In EntreLeadership Dave Ramsey talks about how he built his company, and how to be a strong leader. He talks about how to grow as a leader and the questions you should ask yourself in order to develop yourself. This book has doable, step-by-step guidance to follow to become a better leader and watch your business grow as you do.

He talks about inspiring and unifying your team, handling your business finances, and reaching your business goals. If you are making your own business and you need some pro tips about leadership, this book is what you want. But you can find great insights in this book no matter what you are doing with your life right now. If you are a parent you can use it with your family or at work, you can use it with your coworkers! This is because leadership is really all about functioning efficiently as a team and reaching your goals together.

What Books Does Dave Ramsey Recommend?

We’ve talked all about books that were written by Dave Ramsey, but what about books that Dave Ramsey recommends? There are many other great financial reads you can find on Dave Ramsey’s website. You can also read more about Dave Ramsey’s steps to reach financial steps by reading, “Dave Ramsey’s 7 Baby Steps.” Here are just a few book suggestions from Dave Ramsey:

Dave Ramsey’s Book Club

If you’re interested in really tackling your finances with Dave Ramsey’s sage wisdom you can actually join Dave Ramsey’s official book club! All you have to do is create an account on his website and then join the book club (fees may apply). Then, at the beginning of each month, you’ll receive Dave Ramsey’s book club book of the month in the mail. You’ll also get an email with details about when the live book discussion will happen on the private book club Facebook page along with a study guide to use as you read.

For more answers to any questions you may have about the Dave Ramsey book club, just visit the book club’s FAQs Page.

 
Dave Ramsey along with his many inspiring books have helped a lot of people get back on their feet financially. You can take on his financial fitness challenge too and manage your money like never before.

Another way you can get some needed financial help is to take out an Installment Loan at Check City! Installment loans can help you stay on top of your bill payments and avoid late fees, which can really hurt your long-term financial goals.


How to Budget with Dave Ramsey

dave ramsey budget

Everyone wants to have more power over their money and be at the mercy of strict finances less. What many people don’t realize is that the key to financial freedom is a strong budget.

Budgeting gets a bad rap sometimes as being too time-consuming, or by restricting your finances too much. But all you need is these 4 steps to make a budget, and once that’s done, you’ll find yourself getting out of debt, saving more, and becoming more financially free and comfortable in the long term.

Explore this Article

Step 1: List Total Income
Step 2: List Total Expenses
Step 3: Plan Your Spending
Step 4: Keep a Record
Free Budgeting Worksheets

Dave Ramsey has an article named, “Learn How to Budget” on his blog where he briefly outlines his simple 4 step process to creating a blog. So stop living in the monetary moment, and start living for the financial long term—it really is worth the 5 minutes it’ll take you to go through these 4 steps and create your own simple budget.

Step 1: List Total Income

total income

Dave Ramsey’s first step to creating a budget is, “Write Down Your Total Income.”

The very first step to creating any budget is to list all your sources of income and add them together to have a total income amount at the top of your budget. Dave Ramsey recommends that you use what he calls “take-home pay” when adding up your total income. Take-home pay refers to net income rather than gross income.

Net Income: Net income refers to your total income after taxes. It is sometimes called “take-home pay” because this is the amount that actually reaches your bank account after taxes get taken out.

Gross Income: Gross income refers to your total income before taxes.

You can find out your take-home pay by finding the percentage of income tax for your state and subtracting that percentage from your monthly income.

Make sure you include all sources of income, including any second jobs, any freelancing, or side gigs.

Step 2: List Total Expenses

expenses

Dave Ramsey’s second step to creating a budget is to, “List Your Expenses.”

List all of the regular expenses you have every month. This includes anything and everything you’re your mortgage, utilities, rent, insurance, HOA fees, groceries, gas, subscriptions, clothing, debts, phone bills, etc.

One of the best ways to determine what all your regular expenses end up being is to look at your bank statement for the past month or couple of months and find the average amount you spend each month on everything.

Step 3: Plan Your Spending

spending

Dave Ramsey’s third step to creating a budget is to, “Subtract Expenses from Income to Equal Zero.”

The type of budget that Dave Ramsey suggests you make is called a zero-based budget. This is when your income minus your expenses equal zero. So every single dollar you make goes to some kind of category listed in your budget, not a single cent is unaccounted for. This is a good budget type because every single dollar you make has a purpose.

You do the most math in step 2 of Dave Ramsey’s budget plan. Divide up your monthly income into all your different expense categories until you reach zero. If at the end of your budgeting calculations, you are above zero then you have funds that could still be going somewhere, like to the emergency fund. If you are below zero you have to reduce expenses somewhere so you don’t end up losing money each month.

Step 4: Keep a Record

record spending

Dave Ramsey’s fourth step to creating a budget is to, “Track Your Spending.”

Now you just have to keep track of all your transactions to make sure you stay in the budget guidelines you created for yourself in steps 2 and 3. Figure out the best way for you to keep track of all of your transactions so that you can make sure you don’t go over in any of your budgeting categories.

There are a few ways you can keep track of your spending. You can use any number of budgeting apps, a detailed checkbook, another form of paper note-taking, the cash envelope system, the cash wallet system, or prepaid debit cards.

Budget Apps

Dave Ramsey suggest you use the EveryDollar app as your budgeting app.

Checkbook

Using checks can make budgeting a lot easier. Every time you write a check a copy of the check gets written on the slip behind each individual check. By keeping these personal check receipts you can keep perfect track of all your transactions. You can also use the section in the back of your checkbook to jot down the details of all your spending.

If you want to learn more about the advantages of checks and how to balance a checkbook check out these helpful articles, “How to Write a Check” and “6 Advantages of Using Checks.”

Notebook

If you don’t want to use checks, you can still use a paper recording system to keep track of all your spending. You can find notebooks that are ready for this purpose on Amazon by searching budget workbook or expense tracker notebook.

Cash Envelope System

A cash envelope system is when you divide your cash up into different envelopes that are then assigned specific purposes. For example, you could have an envelope for bills, another for groceries, and another for gas. This way, you can only use those strict cash amounts to make purchases. A cash envelope system is a great option for those who have a lot of difficulties staying on budget and not overspending.

You can even purchase envelope systems on Amazon as well by searching cash envelope system where you’ll find envelopes and filing systems you can use to keep your cash organized.

Cash Wallet System

Another way to use the cash envelope system is to use a wallet with enough cash dividers for all your budgeting sections. These cash system wallets are helpful because you can keep all your cash organization neatly zipped up in one wallet. You can also use your wallet for your cards and checkbook as well.

Free Budgeting Worksheets

Tracking your spending in a way that works well for you might be the most taxing part of budgeting. But with these tips, you can make recording expenses a breeze.

Some other things you can use to make budgeting even easier is one of Dave Ramsey’s budget forms. Any of these budget forms from Dave Ramsey’s website are free to use and can help you budget and plan.

Specifically his Monthly Cash Flow Plan can help you go through the steps and organize your funds according to Dave Ramsey’s easy money flow plan.

If you need a more simplified version of this budget form you can find it with Dave Ramsey’s Quick Start Budget.

Budgeting doesn’t have to be a colossal pain, and it doesn’t have to make your life sad and restricted. In fact, using a budget can be your key to long-term financial freedom.


Read More


Check City Blog. “Budgeting for College Students 101.”

Check City Blog. “Budgeting in 4 Easy Steps.”

Christmas Present Ideas from Amazon

amazon daily deals

There are lots of great deals you can take advantage of every single day, with Amazon’s Daily Deals! You won’t believe some of the great things you can find. Every Tuesday we highlight some of our favorite Amazon Daily Deal buys. Here are some of our top picks from today:

*The prices shown below are the sale prices listed at the time of posting.

ARTEZA Art Supplies

art supplies

ARTEZA Colored Pencils

Current Sale Price: $25.23

Originally: $32.99

You Save: $7.76‬! (24% off)

You don’t have to pay premium prices to get quality supplies for the artists in your life. These ARTEZA coloring pencils come in a set of 72 colors, from sapphire yellow to cloudy gray. They are quality made pencils with a soft, wax-based core that is break resistant and easy to sharpen. What’s more, all of this comes in a professional tin box where you can keep your numbered pencils neat and organized. This colored pencil set would make a great gift for the beginner or professional artists in your life.

ARTEZA Liquid Chalk Markers

Current Sale Price: $18.05

Originally: $24.99

You Save: $6.94! (28% off)

These ARTEZA markers are a water based chalk marker that can be used on chalkboards, whiteboards, restaurant signs, and even windows. This marker set comes with 16 markers and 16 replaceable chisel tips. This box set even comes with tweezers you can use to replace the marker tips. But that’s not the only extra feature these markers have. You also get 50 labels and 2 sticky stencils that you can use in your marker art.

ARTEZA Drawing Pad

Current Sale Price: $11.75

Originally: $17.99

You Save: $6.24! (35% off)

These drawing pads come in a pack of 2 notebooks with 50 sheets of paper in each drawing pad. The pages are 8 x 10 inches, making them the perfect sketchbook size. The pages are thick, and set in a spiral bound book for easy artist use. Artists can use these sketchbooks with pencil, crayon, pens, and even charcoal.

LEGO Marvel Superheroes Avengers

lego set

Current Sale Price: $79.97
Originally: $99.99
You Save: $20.02! (20% off)

Recreate an epic scene from Avengers Infinity Wars! This Lego building set is for ages 8 to 14 years old. You can build a 3 level New York building that includes the Sanctum Sanctorum, a pizzeria, and a water tower. It also includes characters from the movie like, Doctor Strange, Iron Man, Iron Spider Man, Cull Obsidian, and Ebony Maw.

Wireless Charger

wireless charger

Current Sale Price: $19.99
Originally: $27.99
You Save: $8.00! (29% off)

Having a wireless fast charger can really make your life easier. Instead of fiddling with lots of chords you can simply place your devices on a wireless charger. You can charge 2 things at once and it even comes with an iWatch stand. You can charge your iPhone, iWatch, and airpods.

Lenovo Chromebook

laptop sale

Current Sale Price: $246.99
Originally: $299.99
You Save: $53.00! (18% off)

The Lenovo Chromebook is a convertible laptop, meaning it can become a tablet as well! All you have to do is fold the keyboard over and you now have a tablet and laptop in one. It has a 11.6 inch HD IPS display with a 64 GB capacity and a sleek, thin design making this Chromebook a great choice for busy, on-the-go people.

Stanley Camping Items

camping cooking gear

Base Camp Cook Set

Current Sale Price: $47.09

Originally: $80.00

You Save: $32.91! (41% off)

If you’re serious about camping then you’ll probably at some point need some cooking gear. This cooking set is all made of rustproof, stainless steel so you know you’re getting high quality, durable products. It comes with a pot that has a vented lid, a frying pan, and a silicone trivet to put down on the table to protect it. It even comes with 4 bowls, plates, sporks, and even a dish drying rack for after you clean up.

Travel Mug

Current Sale Price: $16.00

Originally: $23.00

You Save: $7.00! (30% off)

This is a classic trigger action travel mug. The trigger action on the lid and it’s leak proof build makes it easy to use on the go when you’re traveling, camping, or hiking. It also comes in lots of colors, like blue, green, white, black, and red. It is double walled and vacuum insulated so this mug can keep your drinks hot for up to 7 hours.

Lunch Box

Current Sale Price: $26.49

Originally: $38.53

You Save: $12.04! (31% off)

This classic lunch box has a large 10 quart capacity and is made of steel for lifelong durability. You can have this lunchbox forever! It also comes with a dome shaped lid with a metal latch so that you can latch your thermos into the lid of the lunchbox.

Kindle Monthly Deals

Did you know Amazon has kindle deals every month?! It’s important to keep the joy of reading alive in your life and having your own library to go to is the key. With kindle e-readers this job is easy. Amazon also has great sales on great books going on all the time, and on audiobooks too. So reading lots of new things each year doesn’t have to cost a lot.

Thanksgiving Takeover

by All Recipes Magazine

thanksgiving recipe book

Current Sale Price:$5.49
Originally:$29.94
You Save:$24.45! (82% off)

It’s that time of year now when we start baking and cooking unique Thanksgiving and Fall-time recipes. All Recipes has some great recipes to choose from for the holidays. You can actually get the magazine subscription through Amazon if you want to keep getting their recipes.

A Fire Sparkling

by Julianne MacLean

kindle deals

Current Sale Price:$7.48
Originally:$14.95
You Save:$7.47! (50% off)

A Fire Sparkling is a fictional historic romance about 3 generations of a family. This beautifully written tale centers mostly around a woman named Vivian Hughes and her life as a young woman during World War II.

The Overdue Life of Amy Byler

by Kelly Harms

kindle deals

Current Sale Price:$7.48
Originally:$14.95
You Save:$7.47! (50% off)

This book is a comedy about a lovable single mom named Amy Byler who just needs a break. If you’re wanting a witty romantic comedy in novel form then this is the read for you.

Beneath a Scarlet Sky

by Mark Sullivan

kindle deals

Current Sale Price:$7.48
Originally:$14.95
You Save:$7.47! (50% off)

Beneath a Scarlet Sky has everything a reader wants in historic fiction. It’s based on a true story and involves spies, war stories, and biographical fiction all entwined in one. Soon this book will hit the screens starring Tom Holland, so before it does make sure you read this bestselling novel by Mark Sullivan.

 
Sometimes deals and sales are the way that we get things we really need. You may especially depend on sales when you’re in college, or just starting out on your own, or in a new place. So when you find something you really need on sale, and payday is just a couple days too late, that can be really frustrating.

Luckily Check City can help you out with a quick and easy Personal Loan so that you can take advantage of important deals regardless of when your payday comes.

Share with us what deals you snagged today by using the hashtags #amazondailydeals #checkcity.
 

READ MORE

Make clothes shopping not just easier, but cheaper too, by doing your clothes shopping online, “Shopping for Your Clothes Online.”

Get ahead on your Christmas shopping this year, “4 Reasons to Start Early Christmas Shopping.”

Learn how to get thrifty with all your gift shopping this season, “Thrifty Gift Shopping.”

Read all about the post Christmas online shopping addiction and how to you can save yourself from overbuying this year, “The Post-Christmas Online Shopping Addiction.”

Save on all your holiday shopping with these tips, “Saving while Online Shopping for the Holidays.”


Dave Ramsey’s 7 Baby Steps

dave ramsey baby steps

Are you trying to get out of debt? Do you want more financial stability and freedom? Are your finances one of the bigger stresses in your life right now?

Explore this Article

Step 1: Start an Emergency Fund
Step 2: Focus on Debts
Step 3: Complete Your Emergency Fund
Step 4: Save for Retirement
Step 5: Start a College Fund
Step 6: Pay Off Your House
Step 7: Build Wealth

If any of these sentiments apply to you then Dave Ramsey’s 7 baby steps might be just what you need to cure your money blues.

Dave Ramsey is a guy who, through personal experience, was able to get out of debt and find financial peace of mind. He is now a financial expert with courses and books to help the everyday person get in control of their finances.

The best place to start when trying to regain control over your finances and achieve a full “money makeover” is to start with his 7 step plan. This plan has 7 baby steps that you follow to reach more financial stability and get to the point where you can start building wealth.

Step 1: Start an Emergency Fund

car maintenance

The first step in Dave Ramsey’s 7 step plan is, “Save $1,000 for Your Starter Emergency Fund.”

One of the main reasons people struggle with money is because necessary emergency expenses (like medical bills, car bills, or home repairs) come out of nowhere and drag you deeper and deeper into debt. But if you are preemptively prepared for these surprise expenses then they won’t take you off guard again.

So the very first thing you should do when getting your money in line is to get an emergency fund started. Save up an emergency fund in a separate bank account, until you have at least $1,000 in the account. This will be the start of the emergency fund that will keep sudden necessary expenses from plunging you into deep debts because you weren’t prepared.

Step 2: Focus on Debts

debts

The second step in Dave Ramsey’s plan is to “Pay Off All Debt (Except the House) Using the Debt Snowball.”

The snowball method that Dave Ramsey refers to here means that you start by paying off small debts first, and work your way up to the bigger debts. Debts can include paying off your car, credit card debts, and student loans.

First, make a giant list of all your debts, every single one, except for your mortgage if you have a house. Then, put your list of debts in order from the smallest debt amount to the largest. Then you go through knocking out each debt by eliminating the smallest debts first and working your way up to the largest debt last.

Step 3: Complete Your Emergency Fund

medical bills

The third step is to “Save 3 to 6 Months of Expenses in a Fully Funded Emergency Fund.”

Now that you’ve gotten all your debts out of the way, it’s time to finish your emergency fund. You can use the same money you were using to pay off debts each month and put it toward your emergency fund until it has enough to cover 3 to 6 months’ worth of expenses and bills. Then you’ll really be prepared for anything.

Reasons to Have an Emergency Fund

  1. If you lose your job.
  2. You won’t have to worry because you’ll have enough to last you 6 months. This will give you the time you’ll need to find a new job.

  3. If your car breaks down.
  4. You’ll be able to pay for the necessary repairs, the tow truck, or even for a new car in some cases.

  5. Medical bills.
  6. Don’t let your health and necessary medical bills keep you from staying afloat financially.

  7. Home repairs.
  8. If something happens to your home you’ll be able to fix the problem rather than living with it.

Having an emergency fund is THE key to keeping you out of debt in the future. After getting yourself out of debt, an emergency fund is what will keep you from getting back into debt in the future.

Step 4: Save for Retirement

retirement

The fourth step in the Dave Ramsey plan is to, “Invest 15% of Your Household Income in Retirement.”

After your debts are gone and your emergency fund is taken care of, it’s time to start seeing to other important savings like a 401K. Dave Ramsey recommends you take 15% of your gross monthly income and put it toward a retirement fund each month. To figure out how much you should be putting into your retirement fund each month, take your monthly income and multiply that number by 0.15.

Step 5: Start a College Fund

college funds

The fifth step to Dave Ramsey’s plan is to, “Save for Your Children’s College Fund.”

Avoiding student loan debts can be one of the biggest factors in staying out debt as a young adult. If you can pay for your kids college tuition then you’ll ensure their financial security in the future, as they’ll better be able to stay out debt. Dave Ramsey recommends using either a 529 college savings plans, or an education savings accounts (ESA). Talk to your bank or credit union about setting up these accounts for these specific purposes.

Step 6: Pay Off Your House

mortgage

The next to last step in this 7 step plan is to, “Pay Off Your Home Early.”

Put all the extra monthly income you have into your mortgage so you can finish paying it off early. After this step you will officially have no debts whatsoever! All of your earnings will go to you instead of getting drained away in large debts and payments.

Step 7: Build Wealth

wealth and legacy

Finally, it is time to, “Build Wealth and Give.”

Congratulations! Once you’ve reached the 7th step in Dave Ramsey’s Baby Steps, you can start focusing on building your wealth and leaving a legacy. Don’t forget to keep and maintain those financial safety nets like a healthy emergency fund, retirement account, savings account, and college funds.

Now you are officially in charge of your money rather than it being in charge of you.

Financial freedom is possible for you! Everyone can do it and Dave Ramsey’s 7 baby steps can help you get there. Dave Ramsey also has other resources that can help you implement this plan. You can participate in Dave Ramsey’s program, books, and podcasts.

You can take the actual course with Financial Peace University.

Dave Ramsey also has a free customized plan and assessment that you can do right now, in just 3 minutes!

Listen to the Dave Ramsey Show anywhere you listen to podcasts or radio.

 
Dave Ramsey’s 7 baby steps to financial freedom can help you with so many aspects of your life. They can help you decide when to buy a house or help you get situated for saving for a house. It’s a checklist program that can help you get rid of loans and debt (like student loans), or even help you get to where you can budget for a wedding.

Another way you can get some needed financial help is to take out an Installment Loan at Check City! Installment loans can help you stay on top of your bill payments and avoid late fees, which can really hurt your long-term financial goals.


Read More


Browse Dave Ramsey’s online store for more great financial resources to help you on your financial journey.

Read more helpful articles on the Dave Ramsey Blog

Learn more about the debt snowball, “How the Debt Snowball Method Works.”

Read Dave Ramsey’s full article on his 7 baby steps, “What Are the Baby Steps?

Stay out of debt through college by using these tips, “How to Stay Debt Free through Grad School.”


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