Home > Author Archives: Kim Parr

Author Archives: Kim Parr

Kim Parr is a private practice optometrist, freelance writer, and personal financial blogger. You can follow her journey to 20/20 financial vision at Eyes on the Dollar.

Pros and Cons About Booking a Vacation With Points

Beaches in South Kauai

I’m sure you are all sick of hearing about my Hawaii vacation by now, but it really was the highlight of the year for us so far. It also took more than a year of planning to book most of the trip with points and miles for our family of three. We’ve booked smaller, closer trips with points before, but this was the first time we’ve really used our credit card rewards for high end resort stays and expensive flights. Let me say that this is in no way a negative post. Taking a two week vacation is something I used to only dream about, but now that I know the ropes, I think we can do even longer periods of travel in the future. However, there really is no such thing as a free lunch, so here are the pros and CONS of booking a vacation with points. Cons of Traveling With Points Again, I am not being negative. Maybe these should be called reminders instead of cons? Award Rooms Are Small When you book a standard award with points, it usually isn’t for the nicest room in the place. If you’re like me, you probably don’t have hotel ...

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Chapter 7 Bankruptcy: Are You Eligible?

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

In your journey toward financial clarity, there will come a time when you will need to take an honest look at your debt. If you’re lucky, you might be in a position to pay off your debt and improve your financial picture. However, if your debts are far greater than your income, or if you have had a series of misfortunes that have left you financially bereft, you might have no option but to file Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. What is Chapter 7 Bankruptcy? Before we talk about what Chapter 7 is, we should discuss what it is not: Chapter 7 bankruptcy is not a way for people to shirk their responsibilities or defraud their creditors. It is a way for honest people, who have fallen on hard times financially, to eliminate their debts and start over with a clean slate. Because it is designed to forgive honest debt, there are several criteria you must meet to be eligible to file. Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Criteria Because Chapter 7 is reserved for those who truly cannot pay their bills, there are several criteria that you must meet before you can file. The biggest criterion is the chapter 7 means test. The Means ...

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The Most Unfrugal Purchase I’ve Made in Years

Buying your kids things for road trips

Shannon from Financially Blonde had a great post on last week about how she almost never pays full price for anything. After reading that post, I tend to agree with her point of view that planning and shopping around almost always turns up a better deal. I try really hard to always get the best value for money we spend. Sometimes it is harder when you live in a small town and need or want something fast. Recently, I made a very frivolous and unfrugal purchase, and honestly, I don’t feel bad at all. My Child Is Probably Really Spoiled I do realize that my daughter has it better than most. She gets to live in a pretty nice house. She eats lots of home cooked meals made with organic vegetables and fruits. She gets all kinds of time with Jim and I. She has dance and ski lessons. We take awesome trips. She has already seen way more of the country in her 7 years than I did in my first two decades. That being said, I can’t apologize for being able to offer her that lifestyle. We’ve worked hard for it, and I think parents always want their children ...

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Preventing Fires in Your Home

fire safety at home

What strikes fear into the heart of a commercial landlord? A tenant who doesn’t pay? Vandals? No, it’s an unannounced visit from the fire marshal! Since the building is older, I was worried he might label it a fire hazard and make us evacuate immediately. Luckily, we only got dinged for two minor things. The whole experience did get me thinking about fire safety and our own home. Call me Smokey Bear, but I think there are probably some things we can all improve on as far as preventing fires at home, and no, because you don’t cook much does not mean you can’t have a fire! Check Your Smoke Alarms Years ago, the unwritten rule was to change your smoke alarm batteries when daylight savings began and ended. What if you live in Indiana or Arizona where they don’t do daylight savings? What about now that there is much more time on longer daylight months? I also recently noticed a we took down because it was beeping and we didn’t have an extra battery. Don’t forget to put them back up! Smoke detectors work great, but not if they don’t have batteries and are stuck in a drawer. Get ...

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Steering Clear of the 6 Major Novice Mistakes of Forex Trading

Forex Trading Mistakes

You’re new to forex trading, and you’re not entirely confident in your abilities. That’s fine. You’re not alone. At the same time, you don’t want to be just like most new traders who end the day at a net loss. Here are some of the more common mistakes you can make, and how to avoid them. You Don’t Make Consistent Decisions Of all of the forex trading mistakes, this has got to be the most common. Almost everyone has a problem with consistency when they first start. Everyone figures that the forex market is simple enough. You have a 50/50 chance of profiting. You either win or you lose on every trade. But, there’s more to it than that. Sure, you either win or lose on every trade, but there’s a lot that happens between and during trades that affects your profits. A successful trade involves making disciplined decisions about stop losses, when to take profits and when to ride out the trend. Most new traders don’t have a clue about how to make rules for themselves and how to stick to those rules. So, this is the first step you can take that will keep you out of trouble: ...

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