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Expenses and Savings – Natural Gas – Part 1 March 24, 2007

Posted by pf in Expenses and Savings.
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Next up on my quest to optimize my inflows / outflows is the cost of my natural gas.  On the surface, while you certainly remember those winter months where the bill was $200 or more, I’m not sure whether or not a lot of people really think about the overall cost and whether or not you can do anything about it.  Mostly, I think people see a big bill and then lower the thermostat. 

 For myself, heat and air conditioning are one of those things where I am a bit unwilling to sacrifice my comfort. For example, in the summer, my wife wants to open up the doors to let the fresh air in, etc…but it’s HOT.  “Air-conditioning is expensive” she says.  I realize this…but I honestly just don’t care.  Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I’ll have it a ice-box temperatures, but nor am I willing to sit there sweating, either.  Same with the heat in the winter.  This is where the “living a life” part comes in for me.  Yes, I can save money if I use less, etc…but the misery factor is a greater cost in MY mind. 


Portfolio Allocation – Update March 23, 2007

Posted by pf in Portfolio Allocation.
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I have started shifting my portfolio to get to my target allocation.  I’ve added about 7% to my small-cap position (PRSVX) and approximately 3% to mid-cap (TRMCX).  I accomplished this by reducing my allocation in large caps by the same amounts (7% -PRGFX and 3% PRFDX).

I will continue to make consistent investments in my capital allocation fund (PRWCX) to increase my position there.  I was very tempted to reduce my equity position in international funds due to the volatility and good run over the last couple of years.  However, I do really believe them for the long term, so will just stay put. 


Getting Out of Credit Card Arbitrage…Sort Of March 22, 2007

Posted by pf in Credit Card.

Like many out there, we have been playing the credit card arbitrage game of 0% financing for many years now.  Currently, we have about $15,000 in outstanding credit card debt that we’ve been floating for the last year or so at 0%.  As those introductory rates come to a close we need to either pay them off or look for the next 0% offer.

 As I have mentioned in my previous posts, we are saving cash for the purchase of a new home.  As I will certainly need to finance this purchase I have begun to wonder what carrying these balances are doing to my credit.  I don’t imagine it’s having a huge impact, but I prefer to be “squeaky clean” come financing time. 



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