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Financing a Family Summer Vacation: 3 Money-Saving Strategies

 

Despite the way the world and trends change, the family summer vacation is still going strong. A 2017 report from the American Automobile Association revealed that more than one-third of families had planned a summer trip for their families that year. If you want to plan an adventure for your family this summer but money is tight, there are a few money-saving strategies you can use to finance a trip without your household budget ballooning out of control.

 

1.      Set Up an Automatic Savings Deposit Plan

 

Even the best-laid savings plans can tank if you are constantly tempted to spend money instead of putting a set amount into your savings account each month. One way to curb your impulse and unnecessary spending is to have that amount deducted from your checking and transferred into your savings each month. Not only will you no longer have to remember to transfer the money, if it goes into your savings as an autopay, you might be less likely to miss it.

 

2.      Find Money Within Your Budget

 

You may be surprised to find additional funds within your household budget if you are committed enough to look for it. To accomplish this, sit down and revise your current budget by going over each expense individually. For example, if you spend up to twenty dollars or more a week on morning coffee runs or take-out breakfasts, start brewing your own at home and pack portable snacks. At the end of the month, add up what you saved by curbing your spending in this area and add it to your vacation fund to help it grow faster.

 

The whole family can invest in your vacation by making their own financial sacrifices. Ask your kids to cut back on the family’s cell phone data usage, have them donate their pocket change once a month, and remind them to care for their clothing and shoes so they last longer. When your kids are involved in the saving process, they may appreciate the result more.

 

3.      Change Your Insurance Deductibles

 

While having a low deductible for your car or homeowners’ insurance premiums can ease your budget, you may save more if you raise them. For example, if you live in central Pennsylvania and currently carry a $500 deductible, you can ask your Harrisburg insurance agency to adjust this amount to $800 or even $1,000, depending on what the company can offer you. You may have to pay more out of pocket if you file a claim, but the risk can often outweigh the cost when you are trying to save money.

 

Saving money for that dream trip this summer can be a challenge, especially when you are raising children. However, with a bit of effort and wise planning, your vacation account can grow by leaps and bounds.

 

Signs That Your Ice Maker Needs Repaired

Having an ice maker in your home is a convenience that you might love. These small devices freeze water to the perfect temperature to ensure that you always have fresh ice waiting for you when you need it. You can crunch on a few cubes to cool off on a hot day and add some cubes to your favorite beverages. No matter what type of ice maker you have, you can keep an eye out for signs that might indicate you need to repair that appliance.

Change in Ice Color

Some refrigerators come with a built-in ice maker, but you’ll also find standalone appliances that you can install under your sink or in a nearby cabinet. The water that flows through the pipes and out of your faucets is the same water that it uses to create ice. You should keep an eye out for any changes in the color of the ice as well as the texture. The ice may appear discolored and look slightly gray, or you might notice that it has large white spots forming in the ice. Another sign that your ice maker needs a repair is when you see dark specks in the ice.

Lack of Ice

One benefit of having your own ice maker is that it continues making ice long after you walk away. Most appliances of this type have a tray inside and will keep running until it completely fills that tray. If you find that the ice maker only partially fills that tray or that the tray remains empty for an extended period of time, you may need to call a sub zero appliance repair shop for assistance. The ice maker may produce pieces that are significantly bigger or smaller than it should, which can change how quickly the tray fills.

Excess Moisture

It’s also important that you look for any signs of excess moisture or moisture buildup. Look inside the ice maker for any pools or puddles of water. This is a sign of a problem with the insulation. You may notice water pooling around the base or sides of the ice maker too, which means that there is a leak inside. This can result in water damage and to an increase in your water bills. Any of these signs tell you that you need fast and professional help to fix your ice maker.