August 19, 2016

Best of Blogs for Week of August 19th

Every Friday afternoon I share some of the more interesting or notable posts that I have seen in the personal finance blogs and other sources for the past week

TheBigPicture has a chart of American Total Debt Balance and Its Composition and I don't think it looks that bad considering we're still below the 2008 peak.


August 14, 2016

Foreigners With Giant Piles of Cash Are Not Buying All The Homes

In certain hot real estate markets I see people claiming that rich foreigners are coming in with millions of dollars and buying up homes and thus driving up the market.    Now I'm sure this happens some but when I saw these claims I couldn't find much solid data on the amount of foreign cash purchases of homes in specific markets.

I did however just find a report showing the total % of homes that are not owned by citizens per major city.
From Bloomberg: Most Non-citizen Homeowners

The % values range from 2-7% mostly in the 2-5% range.  

Now, they say "non-citizen" which Im' going to hazard a guess includes some "non-legal" residents.    I'm not sure on that point but I think its feasible.   Also notice the largest % figures are in Southern cities in TX and AZ.  

San Jose, CA is one city where there are a lot of expensive homes and I've heard there are cash buyers from China.   San Jose is at #4 on the list at 5.8%.    Now thats a significant % really in a market but its not exactly some sort of flood of foreign money.  


August 12, 2016

Best of Blogs for Week of August 12th

Every Friday afternoon I share some of the more interesting or notable posts that I have seen in the personal finance blogs and other sources for the past week

The Big Picture cautions on Faber: 50% Crash Coming! (However. . . )

The Onion gives the Pros And Cons Of The ‘Tiny House’ Movement
They make a lot of good points that add to my argument.

Zillow projects if your house might be underwater The Effect of Rising Sea Levels on Coastal Homes in the future.   Don't panic you've got up to 90 years to move.


August 10, 2016

Amazon Subscribe and Save Filler Items Under $2 for August 2016

Updated list of items under $2 eligible for Amazon Subscribe & Save :

If you don't find anything of interest below you can also search using these category Quick links :
Grocery,  Health and Household,  Beauty and Personal Care, Home and Kitchen, Automotive, Industrial and Scientific, Pet Supplies

A lot of stuff available right now.   Several items under $1.25 and quite a few potentially useful things like a can of tuna, 2x toothbrushes, green electric tape, some super glue, paper plates, bandages and that 76¢ Dial soap.    There were so many things that I stopped looking and didn't bother to list them all.

Dial Liquid Hand Soap, Soothing Care, 7.5 Ounce = $0.76

Glade Solid Air Freshener, Honeysuckle Nectar, 6.0 Ounce = $0.87

Energizer Lithium Coin Watch/Electronic Battery Ecr2450 = $1.00

Tom's of Maine Toothpaste Clean Mint Simply White, Trial Size, 0.9 Ounce = $1.10

Kraft Ranch Dip, Dressing and Recipe Mix Packet, Thick and Creamy, 1.0 Ounce = $1.21

Vidal Sassoon Small Tuck Combs, Tortoise, 4 Count = $1.23

Purex 08993 Dryer Sheets, Mountain Breeze, 40 Count= $1.25

Pringles Nacho Cheese Tortilla Chips, 6.42 Ounce = $1.27

Suave Antiperspirant Deodorant, Shower Fresh 2.6 oz = $1.27

Vidal Sassoon Bobby Pins, Brown, 60 Count = $1.27

Scotch Vinyl Electrical Color Coding Tape 35, Green, 1/2" Width, 20 Foot Length (Pack of 1)= $1.31

Pac-Kit 12-015 Antiseptic Povidone PVP Iodine Wipe (Box of 10) = $1.33

Pillsbury Funfetti Neon Yellow Flavored, Vanilla, 15.6 Ounce = $1.34

Earth's Natural Alternative Wheat Straw Fiber, Tree Free 6" Plate, 20 Pack [paper plates] = $1.39

Reach Crystal Clean Firm Value Pack Adult Toothbrushes, 2 Count= $1.50

StarKist Selects Solid White Albacore Tuna in Water, 4.5 Ounce = $1.55

TetraBetta Plus Floating Mini Pellets = $1.52

Vaseline Lip Therapy, Creme Brulee 0.25 oz = $1.52
True Lime Limeade Stick Pack, Black Cherry, 10 Count (1.06oz) = $1.76

GoodSense Nasal Decongestant Phenylephrine HCl 10 mg tablets, 72-count = $1.76

Band-Aid Peanuts Assorted Adhesive Bandages, 20 Count = $1.86

Permatex 25575 Fast Orange Pumice Bar Hand Soap, 5.75 oz. Bar= $1.95

I'm citing the price for each item including the 15% discount that you'd get with 5 items which is the point here.

I try to list a variety of items so you'll have a better chance of seeing something on this list that you'd actually get use out of so its not just bought and wasted.

Warning :  If you use items off this list then make sure to watch them and cancel your subscription if you no longer want them or if the prices go up.   The cheap items I find seem to change pretty quickly so they may have large price hikes or be removed from the subscribe and save program.

Prices change!   Note the list will get out of date within days or weeks.  I'll probably post a newer list before all of the above items are gone or have price increases.  But if you can't find something good here you can always go to Amazon and search for Subscribe & Save and sort based on prices and poke around to find something cheap to use as a filler.

I've discussed before how you can get a  better discount on Amazon Subscribe and Save purchases if you order 5 items at once.  However if you don't buy a lot of stuff then it can be hard to come up with a 5 item order.   However if your products are worth enough then it can be worth it to add some filler items to get up to 5 items to get the 15% discount. 

Say for example, you want to buy a couple cases of Pampers Swaddlers Diapers  that run $45.97 each with a normal purchase.   With Subscribe and save you'd get a 5% get the price down to $43.67.    But if you have 5 items in your S&S order then it is only $36.78 or a $6.89 savings.   And if you're buying two of those then thats double or $13.78.    Adding the 4 cheapest items listed here to the S&S order would only cost you $4.99 total with the 5 item discount so its worth buying those items to get you a net savings of $8.79.

Note if you don't want the filler items and only use them to get a 5 item discount then you can of course always give away the food items to someone you know or donate them to the local food bank.

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