Money Scams

money scams

There are so many money scams out there in today’s society. Unfortunately, people fall for them every day. I don’t want that to be any of you all. In today’s post I will be discussing a few scams that you should watch out for.

Send Money Up Front

Below is a picture of an ad that I saw in one of the hallways at my job.

Hope nobody actually sent the $4 in.

Hope nobody actually sent the $4 in.

I work at a university so I’m pretty sure that whoever put this up was trying to target a gullible freshman. If you ever see an ad asking you to pay money to receive any type of job information ignore it! It’s 2015 guys. All legit companies have information on the internet. I’ve also seen a similar scam on craigslist where the ad was asking for people to wire them $20 for a job list that featured opportunities for actors and modeling. Don’t fall for it. If something seems fishy it probably is. Trust your instincts.

Lottery Scam

I get spam emails a couple of times each month saying that I’ve won 5 or 10 million dollars. A light bulb immediately goes off in my head. I think to myself that’s nice, but I didn’t play any lottery. The e-mail is instantly deleted. In the e-mails they ask unsuspecting people for your social security number or other personal information. That should be a red flag. The bad thing is that some people are so money hungry that they forget commonsense and end up send people their info. Once they do that their identity is now compromised. They could potentially lose a lot of money.

Fake Inheritance

Another popular scam is when you receive an e-mail from someone that is claiming to be a long lost relative. They then go into details telling you that someone died and that you are next in line to receive an inheritance from them. The first red flag is that the currency is always foreign. The 2nd thing that happens is that they tell you that to receive the money you will have to pay some type of fee upfront. Then they tell you that you will receive your money in a couple days once you do that. This is another one of those too good to be true deals. You will not receive a damn dime from them and you will be out of the money you spent for the “upfront fee”.

Money Order Scam

This next scam can be found on sites like craigslist a few times a month. It’s the money order scam. With this scam a person will send someone a money order for an item or a service. The money order will be for a higher amount than what the item or service is. The scammer will then want you to deposit the money order and subtract the cost of the item or service. Then they want you to wire them the remaining amount of money to them. Those money orders are fake. The bank will find out and alert you. Your account could be in the negative and possibly closed due to fraudulent activity.  I answered a Craigslist ad similar to this before just to see what would happen. I didn’t even do the so called job, but they sent me a bogus money order within a week. I’m not going to lie, the money order looked legit. I could see how some people would fall for it. I wasn’t about to do anything stupid so I trashed it the next day.

Phishing Scams

Phishing scams have been growing in numbers the past few years. A phishing scam is where you receive an e-mail claiming to be a company. An example of that would be receiving an e-mail from someone claiming to be at PayPal. The email will state that you need to update your account. They will provide a link that they want you click on. Don’t do it! They are trying to steal your log in info so that they can access your funds. I received a few phishing e-mails this year. I deleted them quick because I knew they were scams. My PayPal account was created with a Yahoo e-mail address meaning that all legit PayPal emails should come to my Yahoo inbox. This phishing e-mail came to my Google e-mail account. Also I noticed there were some misspelled words in the e-mail too.

Bonus Scam: Pyramid Schemes

Wakeupnow_Logo_op_800x206

Pyramid schemes have been around for a while. They involve getting people to sign up for a service or a product and supposedly you make money when more people sign up under you. One popular pyramid scheme from last year was Wake Up Now. They were supposedly a company that sold health and financial services. I can remember logging on to Twitter and Facebook and seeing everybody and their Mother trying to get you to sign up for that BS. This year it’s crickets. I guess all those Wake Up Now people left the country and retired to the Virgin Islands or something.  Another company that I personally think is a pyramid scheme is Herbalife. A few people have claimed to make money with Herbalife but I doubt it.

As you can see money scams come in different shapes and sizes. If you see an e-mail or an ad containing any of the schemes mentioned above delete it ASAP!

Do you know or any other scams that are out there? Have you fell victim to any of them?

 

Random

August Round Up

 

august round up

The last Friday of each month I do a round-up post. This post features articles that I enjoyed reading during that particular month. This month’s round up features 5 great posts from around the internet. Enjoy

MMD from My Money Design shares with us How to Use the Power of Customer Retention to Lower Your Bills.

Michelle from Making Sense of Cents gives us 10 Daily Challenges to Improve Your Life.

J. Money from Budgets are Sexy shares with us Side Hustle #59 Working at Football Stadiums!

Alexa at The College Investor tells us about The Ultimate Side Hustle: 14 Ways to Get Paid to Write.

Michelle from Shop My Closet Project asks Do You Have a Case of the Mondays?

 

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10 Colleges/Universities in Idaho

idahoThis month I decided to do something a little different. Instead of profiling schools from a certain city, I am doing a whole state. I’m not sure if very many people from this state read my blog, but Idaho you’re up.

Boise State University

Boise State University is a public research institution located in Boise, ID. Boise state has nearly 23,000 students.

University of Idaho

University of Idaho is Idaho’s oldest public university. It was establish in 1889. The schools nickname is the Vandals.

Idaho State University

Idaho State University was established in 1901. Their colors are black and orange.

College of Southern Idaho

College of Southern Idaho is a community college located in Twin Falls, Idaho. Over 9000 students attend the school.

The College of Idaho

The College of Idaho is a liberal arts college that was established in 1891. The college offers 26 majors including accounting, art and chemistry.

College of Western Idaho

The College of Western Idaho is a 2-year community college that is located in Nampa, Idaho.

Lewis-Clark State College

Lewis-Clark State College was established in 1893. Their nickname is the Warriors.

New Saint Andrews College

New Saint Andrews College is a Christian school that was founded in 1994. The student body is less than 200 students.

North Idaho College

North Idaho College is a 2-year community college. Their colors are maroon and gray.

Northwest Nazarene University

Northwest Nazarene University is a private school that was established in 1913. Their motto is “Seek ye first the kingdom of God”.

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August 2015 Debt Update

 

august 2015

It’s that time of the month. What time is that you might be asking? It’s time for my August 2015 debt update? I started this journey with over $72,000 worth of debt. My plan is to have it paid off by October 2018. I have a little over 3 years to make this goal happen. I plan on doing that with money that I make from my job, this website and other side hustles (selling t-shirts, mystery shopping). My update for August is below.

My total debt went from $71,078.81 to $70,849.78. That was a $229.03 decrease. I’m happy with that.

Loan 2 – DOWN from $5950 to $5940

 

Credit Union Loan – DOWN  from $298.45 to $244.36

 

Wells Fargo Loan – DOWN from $1250.58 to $1179.14

 

Bank of America CC – DOWN from $3179.22 to $3141.58

 

Navient – DOWN from $25,666.48 to $25,569.63

 

Nelnet – UP from $34,734.08 to $34,775.07

I’m enjoying seeing the debt get smaller. My Bank of America Credit Card hasn’t been this low since 2008. I’m also stoked that the Credit Union loan will be less than $200 in a couple of weeks. I plan on ramping up these side hustles to eliminate it quicker.

Some Debt Updates:

January 2015 Debt Update (The new beginning)

May 2015 Debt Update

June 2015 Debt Update

July 2015  Debt Update

 

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The Beginners Guide to Selling On eBay

ebay guideThe last few weeks I’ve received some questions about selling stuff on eBay. I’ve decided to compile those answers into one post. In today’s post I will discuss some beginner’s tips for people that are interested in selling on eBay.

If you’re interested in selling on eBay the first thing that you need to do is sign up for an account.  Signing up for an eBay account is free. To start out you just need to include your name, email address and password.

ebay1

The 2nd thing that I would do is sign up for a PayPal account. A PayPal account is an online service that allows you to send and transfer money electronically. It is the best way to get paid using eBay. PayPal is also free to register with. Make sure you add a checking account or credit card to your PayPal account so that it gets verified. The sooner you do that the sooner you will be able to make money and transfer it to your account on file. It usually takes 3-4 days for your money to transfer to your checking account once you’ve withdrawn it.

Paypal

Quick tip: If you’re new to PayPal I wouldn’t add my regular checking account to my account. I would open a separate one.

There are a few fees with eBay and PayPal. I will discuss the basic fees. The 1st 20-40 listings are free on eBay depending on the category. After those free listings the price goes to $0.30 per listing.  There is also a final value fee. That fee is 10% of the total amount of the sale. PayPal’s fee is 2.9% and $0.30 per transaction.

Next, you have to decide what you want to sell. There are thousands of things that you can sell. People are making money on all types of crazy items. Below is a list of a few things that I’ve sold.

  • Shoes
  • Sports Items
  • Clothing
  • Coffee Mugs
  • Tools

Quick Tip: If you are having a problem finding inventory check out this post –> 7 Places to Get Inventory for eBay


Before you settle on items make sure you do your research. The main way I research an item is by searching for it on the eBay website. You want to make sure that it’s an item worth selling. I’ve made the mistake thinking that some items would sell, but they didn’t. Taking an “L” isn’t fun. My eBay flops as I call them can be viewed here.

The next thing that you should do is take good pictures.  Your pictures should be clear and have plenty of lighting. You can also add up to 12 photos for free on eBay. That should be more than enough pictures for a perspective buyer to know if they want to buy your item or not.

The next step is to decide how to sell your item. Do you want to list it as an auction or do you want to sell it for a fixed price? If you list your item as an auction people get the chance to bid on it. The highest bidder wins the item. With a fixed price listing you choose the price. The person can then buy it without bidding. With both of those options you can choose how long you want them to be listed for.

Before you set a price for your listings make sure you check the sold listings to see what your items are currently selling for. Below are a few pictures that can show you how to do that. The example that I used was Air Jordan IV sneakers.

I typed "Air Jordan IV" in the search bar.

I typed “Air Jordan IV” in the search bar.

Next I clicked on sold listings. That's where the arrow is pointed.

Next I clicked on sold listings. That’s where the arrow is pointed.

As you can see most of those Jordan's sold for over $100 bucks. You can compare any item this way. Once you do that you gauge your starting price.

As you can see most of those Jordan’s sold for over 100 bucks. You can compare any item this way. Once you do that you gauge your starting price.

When it comes to shipping you have two options. You either can charge a flat shipping rate or you can calculate the shipping. Make sure you research this especially if you have a large or heavy item. I’ve charged too little for shipping a few times and came out in the negative with a few items. That is not a good feeling. If you have to you can even buy a mini scale and weigh items before you take them to the post office.

Shipping boxes can be hard to come by if you don’t know where to look. I wrote a post a few months ago titled “3 Simple Ways to Get Shipping Boxes“. It details 3 different ways for you to get boxes for your shipping needs.

I hope this eBay beginner’s guide answers some of your questions. If you need some specific help feel free to email me or contact me via twitter.

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Sunshine Blogger Award

sunshine blogger awardHappy Tuesday everyone! A few days ago I found out that I was nominated for The Sunshine Blogger Award by Anum from Current on Currency. Her site is full of great financial information that can help out young adults. She also wrote a guest post for me back in May. You can find it here. I want to thank her for the nomination.

What is the Sunshine Blogger Award?

The Sunshine Blogger Award is a way for bloggers to get to know each other and share some of their favorite blogs. They also get the chance to share more details about themselves.

The rules of this award are simple.

1. Thank the person who nominated you.

2. Answer the questions from the person who nominated you.

3. Nominate other bloggers who you feel deserve this award.

4. Write the same number of questions for the bloggers that you have nominated.

5. Notify the bloggers you have nominated.

Questions from Anum:

If you could change anything about the way I was raised, what would it be?

I think I was raised pretty well. There is nothing that I would have changed. I would say that I wished we had more family vacations.

What would constitute as a perfect day for me?

A perfect day for me would be lounging around on South Beach. I would watch the sunrise and enjoy the atmosphere for a few hours. You can’t beat that.

What’s the music that you most feel for?

This question right here is a toss up. I love different genres of music. Lately I’ve been listening to a lot of Marvin Gaye. I guess right now that’s what I’m feeling the most.

What is something that you would never skimp on or is totally worth the splurge?

I like to think that I’m a pretty frugal person. I don’t really splurge on that many things. I will say that trips are worth the splurge. I’d rather spend that extra $80 to fly with Delta than fly on Spirit Airlines. I’ve also had some bad hotel rooms by being too cheap so I would spend enough for a good room.

What is your favorite thing about blogging?

My favorite thing about blogging is having the chance to network with so many other bloggers out there. I’ve had a chance to e-mail and tweet with a few bloggers. They are cool people. The support in my blogging community is great. If you need help with something many are willing to help you.

Here are the people that I’d like to nominate:

DC from Young Adult Money

Chonce from My Debt Epiphany

Jacqueline from Jacqueline Gum

Michelle from Making Sense of Cents

Michelle from The Shop My Closet Project

Here are your questions to answer!

  1. What is your favorite vacation spot?
  2. What is your favorite thing to do when you’re not blogging?
  3. What is your favorite movie?
  4. What is one piece of advice that you would give your younger self?
  5. If you could have a drink (water, juice, beer, etc.) with anyone living or dead, who would it be?

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The Importance Of Having A Mentor

reayfghgHaving a mentor in your life is huge. Everyone should have at least one mentor. I’ve had one of my mentors since I was in the 10th grade. He’s helped me become the man that I am today. I will always be grateful for that. Mentors can be valuable in your life in numerous ways.

Accountability

Mentors hold you accountable. If you say that you’re going to do something they should make sure that you do it. Over the years my mentor has followed up with me to make sure that I did the things that I said I was going to do. You need people in your life like that.

Life Experiences

Mentors are able to help out their mentees by sharing with them their life experiences. It could be college experiences or life experiences. Everyone is different, but having some kind of knowledge about life could make some things easier. Sometimes you can learn from your mentors past and not make similar mistakes that he or she made.

Guidance & Support

Mentors are there to give you guidance and support when needed. At times people don’t always know where to go in life. During my sophomore year I had the opportunity to apply for the Walt Disney World internship program. At the time I wasn’t sure if I wanted to miss a semester if I was awarded the internship. I ended up getting accepted for the program. I discussed the opportunity with my mentor and made the decision to accept it. That was one of the best decisions that I’ve ever made. I was able to live in another state and interact with a variety of people.

Discuss Ideas

Having a mentor gives you another person to discuss ideas with. You may not be comfortable sharing everything with your friends. Your mentor will be there to listen to your ideas and give you feedback. If the idea isn’t the smartest they will let you that.

Honesty

Going back to the previous statement I said that your mentor will give you feedback about your ideas. It will be honest feedback. You may not always like it, but at least they are being honest. Sometimes our friends might not want to tell you if they don’t like something because they don’t want to make the situation awkward or hurt your feelings. A mentor will tell you the honest truth even if it makes you uncomfortable for a brief moment. The honesty will help you out at the end of the day.

To summarize this post mentors can help you with being held accountable, sharing their life experiences, guidance and support, discussing ideas and being honest.

You don’t have to be a certain age to have a mentor. I currently only have one, but I’m looking for a couple more in different areas.

Have you ever had mentor?

 

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