Monday, February 19, 2007

Puppy Economics, A Fool's Budget & Tiny Houses: My Weird & Frugal News Wrap

Today's weird & frugal news wrap includes a piece about puppies, an easy budget from the Motley Fool and an item about downsized homes. Here's my daily digest of random news.

Should you adopt a puppy? There are hidden costs and issues.

My story: An animal expert recommended that we adopt a full-grown dog. But we did not listen and selected a puppy instead. It's been a lot of hard work. Plus, we will have to pay for puppy training classes. And yes, we have lost a few pairs of shoes, including an expensive pair of Italian hand-made leather shoes that I purchased at a discount.

We love our puppy, who is now a year old; but our friend was right. It would have been cheaper and easier if we had adopted an older dog.

"Cuteness and puppy playfulness are two of the benefits of adopting a puppy. But, as Dr. Becker points out, raising a dog from puppyhood is a challenge. Puppy playfulness can mean high-energy hi-jinx, so be prepared to lose some shoes."
--source: MSN

From the Motley Fool: Budgeting 101 for Couch Potatoes:
"A survey last year by found that 61% of Americans surveyed either don't have or don't stick to their budget.

Slackers? Hardly. Have you ever tried to stick to a budget?

If you have or haven't (hey, no one's judging here), read on for a streamlined cash flow control plan that even couch potatoes like me can follow.

Our Couch Potato Budget concentrates on everyday spending. We're leaving out housing, insurance, and the all-important savings categories for now. Source: Motley Fool"

Chasing free web names.

"Entrepreneurs have been taking advantage of a five-day grace period to sample millions of domain names, keeping the relative few that might generate advertising revenues and dropping the rest before paying. It's akin to buying new clothes on a charge card only to return them for a full refund after wearing them to a big party." --AP

Smaller homes; fewer dollars: Forget the McMansions; there's a new trend in smaller homes.

"A wave of interest in such small dwellings — some to serve, like the Shepherds’ home, as temporary housing, others to become space-saving dwellings of a more permanent nature — has prompted designers and manufacturers to offer building plans, kits and factory-built houses to the growing number of small-thinking second-home shoppers. Seldom measuring much more than 500 square feet, the buildings offer sharp contrasts to the rambling houses that are commonplace as second homes." -- New York Times

Poor Britney. This child needs help. This piece and related links provide a warning for parents: Don't put your kids in show business. Let them make money later.


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