The Mogo Blog

2013 Christmas Spending Guide (A How-To Guide On Avoiding Spending Aftershock)

We are in the heart of spending season. Whether it’s a party, secret Santa, not-so-secret-Santa, flights, or stringing up lights on your house, there are a million and one ways to spend during December. In the lead up to the end of the year, there are some ways you can lock it down (Budgeting all year long, keeping careful track of all your purchases, re-gifting the double crockpot that Nana got you last year) but frankly, those are tough. They take a lot of work, and they’re not realistic when everything gets so busy. That’s why Mogo is here with a 5 Step Spending Guide that is guaranteed to get you through the holiday season totally debt free! Step 1: Decide how much you want to spend on gifts this year Be honest, take a minute to see how much you’re able to spend, and get that number in your head. This one is the hardest part, and it’ll only take you a few minutes. Be honest with yourself, and set yourself up for success. That old saying about ‘it’s the thought that counts’? It’s true. Get a realistic number that you’ll

A Canadian in NYC: A Spending Primer for US Shopping

Hey Canada, guess what? I’m not in you right now! It’s true, I’m on the road. For the next month or so, I’m hanging out with friends and spending my time—and my money, oh man, my money—in one of my favourite cities in the world, New York. Next week, I’ll give you a full account of my NYC shopping style, but this week I’d like to touch on some basic stuff I think about while traveling anywhere. It’s very easy to get swept up in the excitement of traveling and to forget the obligations that go with it, so use this handy guide to get started. The Exchange Rate Matters If, like me, you do a lot of your travel shopping on plastic, it’s easy to forget the difference in price between home and away. Here’s where having a smart phone is helpful (to a point…see below), because with the right exchange app you can keep spending in check. If you’re too busy having fun to think about it, just keep an estimate in mind whenever you pull out that credit card (ie: when I was in

How to Deal With Sunk Costs & Be A Better Spender!

OK – it’s time to get psychological here, and no, there won’t be a test! We’re going to talk about the effects ‘sunk costs’ can have on your finances. A sunk cost is money that you’ve put towards something you can’t get back. Whether it’s a non-refundable purchase (sale items), a phone or a deposit on a vacation rental, it’s spent money – regardless of what you do afterwards. Sunk costs can get dangerous when you need to spend more just to get value out of what you’ve already spent. For example: You spend $200 on a set of golf clubs, and go to the driving range (another $10). You’re no good, so you get two lessons ($45 each). Let’s say you did all that and it turns out you still don’t even like golfing! That was $255 of your hard earned money! Rather than ‘waste’ the money you already spent, you hit the range some more and schedule some tee-times – continually spending cash to ‘recoup the value’ from your original spend. Do you see the problem here? If you spend $A, but need to spend $B to get enough value

An Easy Way to Track Spending: Use Only 1 Payment Method

We’ve talked about budgeting your cash before, and knowing what you spend money on – but let’s face it, sometimes that is a tall order. With bills, one-off purchases and the options to use cash, debit or credit it’s easy to get to the end of the month and have no clue where all your funds went to – and how are you going to budget properly when that happens? Here’s an idea for getting your spending on the right track: simplify your methods. Rather than use the combo of cash, credit and debit, stick to one (preferably one you can track online). For me, I just spent a month where I ONLY used my credit card. To keep myself to it, I left my debit card at home, and didn’t use cash. The credit card works well for me because I am able to cover all my expenses with it – including bills that couldn’t be paid via debit or cash. At the end of the day/week/month, take a look at your expenses all listed out. Try and identify some spending patterns and see where you can cut down. Those little bits help – especially