81 Money Tips: Memorial Day Sales, Budget BBQ Advice, Garage Sale Pointers, and More

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Also in this week’s link roundup, what you can still buy for just $1, and why fast food “value meals”—which cost way more than $1—aren’t really good values.
5 budget barbecuing tips from Guy Fieri. Tip number one is Know Your Guests. That means forget about wasting your money by serving fancy seafood or pricey cuts of beef when the riffraff you’ve invited would rather have hot dogs and burgers:

“You wouldn’t invite my buddies over and serve finger sandwiches,” Fieri points out.

5 money lessons for every high-school graduate. This is also good advice for college graduates, pre-graduates, and those who’ll never be graduates, including:

Materialism is misery: Lives of thrift and conscientiousness lead to less stress, greater enjoyment of the things we do have and a lighter carbon footprint. But most of our societal associations with wealth are deeply connected with materialism: luxury goods, power and status.

6 hobbies that’ll make you money. Brewing beer, for instance, and another hobby that many will devote some time to this weekend:

It’s a perfect example of a hobby that has the potential to make you money in the sense that you can save on your grocery bill if you’re good at it. There will always be stories of the $10 tomato from a tomato plant that yielded just one red fruit, but if you keep it simple you can definitely save some cash. You also get great produce to boot!

6 Memorial Day sales on home and yard gear. Most home improvement type retailers are hosting sales this weekend, like:

Lowe’s is offering 15 percent off Energy Star qualified appliances and 10 percent off other appliances over $397, and up to 30 percent off some clearance models until May 30. There’s also free next-day local delivery and haul-away on appliances and free delivery on grills, patio sets and lawn mowers until June 2.

7 things to consider when figuring out if a deal of the deal is really such a good deal. The geography should make you pause:

How Local?
Most group-buying sites emphasize finding good deals in your area. However, what their search engine considers “in your area” may be more than an hour away. The other day I noticed a really good deal for golf lessons. When I looked closer, the golf course was nearly 100 miles from my house. Even if I was willing to make the drive, the cost of gas alone would negate the discounts.

10 things you should never buy at garage sales. Hopefully, everyone knows it’s not a good idea to buy used tires, bathing suits, or car seats. Hats are no-nos as well, and here’s why:

Hats are rarely cleaned before they sold. They may contain remnants of hair products, sweat, or skin infections.

10 things fast food companies won’t say. For one thing, value meals are of dubious value:

Those value meals can be awfully expensive.
Ah, the combo meal a delicious combination of food and soda at a discount. Call it genius, call it lunch, but don’t call it cheap: That bundled meal option may encourage customers to spend more than they would otherwise. It’s true that the value meal is typically cheaper than the sum of its parts, but research suggests some people don’t actually want all the parts, or not in such large sizes. Some 15% of customers who wouldn’t have bought fries in an a la carte-only offering do purchase them when there’s a value-or-combo meal option

11 tips for running a profitable garage sale. Hopefully, you’ll have more to sell than used tires, bathing suits, car seats, and hats. Also, here’s a neat and smart strategy:

Place individual Craigslist ads for your more desirable or bigger ticket items. I did this with our last garage sale two years ago and every single one of these items sold. I placed them as regular listings, but then wrote that they could be seen at my garage sale, with all the pertinent info.

21 things you can still buy for $1 these days. Not sure if a buck will buy “a few” of these, but if you have a chance this summer, do stop and purchase:

Buy a few glasses of lemonade from a child’s lemonade stand. You get freshly made lemonade, and children learn a little about the value of hard work.