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Archive for the ‘saving money’ Category

Home “Buyers” Beware Part II

It’s A Racket!

If you remember the housing bubble, then you should remember when it burst.  Well get ready for the Housing Bubble Burst Part II

Location, Location and don’t forget, did I mention Location  Your agent wants to close the deal.  It really don’t matter to them if it’s near a nuclear plant or a waste dump.   That being said, check out the surroundings of the property.


Take into consideration that stop lights are a health hazard in that exhaust fumes from cars stopping idling from 15 seconds to 3 minutes and starting up in four different directions.   A round-a-bout is not as bad as a stop sign.   A 4-way-stop intersection is the worst.  By law every vehicle has to slow down, stop, idle then accelerate. This will be going on in all four directions.    So you may want to rethink the highly promoted corner lot and take these into consideration.


Another health hazard is properties near power sub-stations.   Electrical companies deny cancer clusters ever exist but why take the chance.  They are all about the money and don’t want  law suits.   There are warning signs posted all over.  Why would you want to live near it.


Yet another controversial location is near a cell tower.  A cell tower is a relay system for cell phones.   You cell phone is a high frequency low power transceiver and it’s signal is picked up by these towers and amplified and retransmitted.    Some towers are set up to retransmit  signals from other cell towers.   Why subject your family to highly amplified high frequencies?  It’s not worth the investment.

Near a freeway,  don’t even think about it.   Not only do you have to contend with the noise, but the exhaust fumes from gas and diesel fueled vehicles that travel up and down the freeway 24 hours a day.  What happens when there are frequent traffic backups?  Idling vehicles, diesel and gas.    If you care about your family, stay away.   Your agent will not be concerned about your future health, closing is their game.

The H O A. (Home Owner’s Association)  Do your really want to pay someone to tell you what you can and can’t do on you own property?  hold up, wait a minute, your city, county and state code enforcement officer does that, so you already have three, do you really need another?


The highly advertised Bus stop.   If you have asthma or any other respiratory illness you want to stay as far away from living at a bus stop as you can.   A vehicle stopping and starting by your home every 15 min……not a good thing.   If you don’t have a respiratory problem now…you will.   Admittedly, this is an extreme example.  this home is on the corner, a bus stop right at the garage, at a stop light and a cell tower across the street.  That’s before you even look at the inside of the house.

Flood Planes

Check the area’s flood plane map.   The is as elevation in most every area that will always flood.   Compare the flood plane with the elevation  and find out the elevation of the property you are considering.    I don’t have to tell you that the elevation of your property should be substantially higher than the flood plane.

The Greenbelt.   These areas are promoted in areas where no other construction is allowed.   While it may seem nice to live near a green belt, there are restrictions and research need to be done to find out what can   and can’t be done on your property.    Various restrictions apply so thoroughly do your research to assure that the restrictions would not hinder your ambitions now or in the future.

Industrial Areas.   After reading this far, do I really need to explain why this area is not a good idea.   But I will say this, trucks, noise, traffic and I don’t want to get into what is stored, shipped in and out of these areas.

Railroad Tracks.   Really!!!

To Be Continued…….Continue To Part III

The Solar Energy Equation

power needed x 2 = inverter power

if you needed 250 watts

250 X 2 = 500

500 would be your inverter power

inverter power / 500 = batteries @ 100ah

500 / 500 = 1 battery @ 100am

if your inverter power was 750-1000 watts you would want 2 batteries @ 100ah

if your inverter power was 2000 watts you would want 4 100ah batteries.

solar panels =  90 watts x 100ah batteries

if you had 1 100ah battery you would want 90 watts of solar panels to be useful  

keep in mind that 15 watts = approx. 1 amp.   an ideal charging rate is 10 amps which is about 150 watts.  

if you had 2 100ah batteries you would want 180 watts of solar panels.

Don’t get me wrong, you can have a 45 watt solar panel system but don’t let your battery go flat 11.9 volts you will be days on end to top off your 100ah battery


The ideal beginner solar system would be 500 watt inverter, 1 100ah battery and 90 watts of solar panels.   

Give Yourself a Tax Break (Tax Cuts For The Rest Of Us)

You can’t depend on a politician to give you a tax cut.  He may appear to give you a tax cut while putting money in your right pocket while at the same time,  taking it out of your left pocket.  He will lower your taxes with one hand and raised them with the other hand.  The really bold ones with lower your taxes by 10% and in one place and raised them 15% in an other place.   Got to watch those politicians.   The are a “Smile in ya face, frown at ya back” breed.   Besides, the way they see it is, all you gave them is your one vote, the other guys, you know the lobbyist, gives them millions to serve their client’s (big business) cause.

Tax cuts for big business, well, we need to learn a lesson about how big business do business.    For instance, if big business need more capital, they will appeal to legislators via Lobbyist for tax breaks.   Well my friends, the buck stops with you.   If you don’t do business with these companies they won’t have a tax to cut.

The old conception that businesses will provide more jobs with these tax cuts has not been proven.  After 10 years the jobs  has not came to reality.   The economy is slowly sinking yet these tax cuts for big business are still touted as the remedy to pick this economy up.

Here is a concept,  eliminate the tax cuts, everybody pays their fair share.   When those companies make so much they stop production, other companies will pick up production therefore hiring more employees to keep up production.   It’s called sharing the wealth.   Take a 10 million dollar company  with tax breaks for instance,  why not have 2 five million dollar companies with no tax breaks.   Or even better have 4  2.5 million dollar companies with no tax cuts.    Face it, if a company gobbles up another company with tax cuts, it not only have it’s own tax cuts but the company’s tax cuts that it consumed.   Then after 6 months if not immediately, the layoff  begins, the trimming starts, yet the tax cuts stay in place.

Unlike big business, you don’t have lobbyist.   Oh, you mean your senator,  congressman or governor, lol.   They are the ones being lobbied by big business.   Big business is filling your elected official’s pockets with millions of dollars of your money to do their bidding.   Here’s how it works,  taxes are collected from you and big business.  Lobbyist on behalf of big business, stuff the pockets of senators, congressmen and governors so they will pass legislation for tax cuts,  local taxes (utilities, car tabs, gas tax, sales tax, property tax) are raised to compensate for the tax cuts for the rich and big business.  Oh, and because big business don’t pay their fair share, a lot of social programs take a trip out back to the chopping block.

Now, it’s our turn.  let’s give ourselves a tax brake, yes that’s right, brake as in stop, slow down, discontinue.  BRAKE.

Take your utility company for instance.   They will provide you with tips on how to save energy.  Some will even come out and check your home for air leaks that your heat or AC may escape.   They will do this out  one side of their mouth and at the same time apply to the utilities commission for a rate hike out of the other side of their mouth.

As soon as you hear about a utilities rate hike, immediately start thinking of ways to cut back usage and stick to it.

1. Put plastic over your window.

2. Insure that doors are well sealed.

3. Turn off lights and heat  in rooms that are not being used.

4. Turn you water heater down to 120 degrees.

5. Consider washing the dishes once a day.

6. Set up a solar charging station for your electronics. You may want to consider setting up a small (45 watt solar system from Harbor Freight).   Use a power strip (one with an on/off switch) that will accommodate  those wall chargers.   When not in use turn the switch off.  Those wall chargers consumes energy any time it’s plugged in even though its not charging your electronic device.  Keep all chargers in one drawer, using clear zip lock baggies to put each one in.  Lable them if needed.

7. Did you know that your tv (flat screen/HDTV/DTV) consumes energy even when it’s turn off.  It would be a good idea to have it plugged into a power strip with a switch also.  Turn off the strip when away from home long periods of time, such as when you go to work, school or play.

8.  At Night, turn the heat down and put on an extra blanket, you might consider sleeping in socks and  a night cap (the one that goes on your head).

9.  Arrange it so that you can charge your cell phone, mp3 players and other electronic devices in your car when possible even if you have to use an inverter.

10. Desktop Computer….Us a power control panel to plug in you speakers, external modem and any other items.  switch off the panel when not in use.

11. On really cold consecutive days, go to the mall, library.

12. Spend days off volunteering.

If your utility company goes up on your electric bill 10%, cut back your usage 15% or even 20%.

A little motivation to save on your utilities is the fact that the higher your bill is, the more taxes you pay.

Take a look at your Light bill and see who all have their hands in your pocket

So, do you want a tax brake,  lower your utility bill.

If you pay water bill, in some areas your sewer bill is determined by how much water you use.  So, when you wash your car or water your lawn or garden your sewer bill goes up even though the water is not going down the sewer.  They too will also talk out the side of their mouths touting saving you money by offering sometimes even free shower head and faucet aerators.   At the same time, doing everything they can to raise your rates.

Support local organizations that hold car washes i.e. girl/boy scouts, school bands/choirs and other non profit organizations.

Use rain barrels to catch water for your garden and feed your animals.    A friend of mine even use rain water to flush his commode.

Do you want a tax brake, lower your water and sewer bill.

I would mention how to make the price of gas go down but the last time we did that, everyone went out the day before the boycott and filled up their tanks and the stations closed on that day and gave the employees two days paid vacation.  The price of gas didn’t go down and it was considered a miserable failure.

So, I can only say…..

1. Yes, keep your tires inflated to recommended PSI, Thanks Barack.

2. Combine trips to the store.

3.  Keep your car properly tuned.

4. Avoid sudden stops and accelerations.

5. Operate vehicle smoothly, don’t get into a position battle with the car beside you.

6. Take the extra load out of your vehicle.  i.e. golf clubs, luggauge and junk.

If your vehicle holds more than 15 gallons, don’t buy more than 10 gallon at a time, All the extra weight causes you to get less gas milage, especially driving around town.   If there were no state and federal gas tax, gas would be half the price it is now.  Did you know for instance in Washington state Owners of LP Gas vehicles pay an annual fee of 37.50 to make up for the taxes loss by not buying gasoline.   There is pending legislation  for electric vehicle owners to pay $200-$300 annual fee in addition to tab fees.

Do you want a tax brake, lower your gas bill.

Do you use your cell phone more than your home phone (land line)?   You might consider disconnecting your home phone.   You would be be surprise that how many people do not have a home phone.  There is a utility tax for your home phone service.

Look at you phone bill and see who all have their hands in your pocket.

Want a tax brake, discontinue your land line (home phone) service.

I’m saving this one for last because I know how hard it will be.   You might want to chip away at your cable bill.  Discontinue some premium channels.

Your internet, if you call your company to discontinue you internet, you may be introduced to a GREAT deal for continued service.  Sometimes this works and sometime they will attempt call your bluff.   You may have to discontinue for a few months (frown) then call up on one of those deals you get in the mail or see on tv.

Want a tax brake, lower your internet bill.

You are on your own, nobody is going to give you a tax brake.   You have to give your self a tax brake.

Brake….stop, discontinue, halt.  To be slowed or stopped.

So put the brakes on your taxes.

Start cutting your taxes today!!!

Stay tuned!!!

To Be continued………

Here is a link to an idea that will save you money.   If you try it, let me know how it works out for you.

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