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The Chase Expert Answers Your Questions About Cleaning Up Your Finances!

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As some of you know, The Family Piggy Bank is a great place to discuss personal finance issues with other like-minded moms.

The Family Piggy Bank recently hosted Caryn, a mom who actually works for Chase Blueprint.

She's answered your questions about cleaning up your finances. Read on for Caryn's answers below!

by on Apr. 17, 2012 at 3:31 PM
Replies (11-20):
by on Apr. 17, 2012 at 10:02 PM

Thanks for answering the questions.

by on Apr. 18, 2012 at 4:39 PM
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
by Bronze Member on Apr. 18, 2012 at 5:27 PM

thanks for the tips...i agree that budgeting is important. we are working on it!  I also like the idea of planning ahead for our vacation and having an idea of how much everything will cost.  I won't be charging things I can't pay off, so i'll need to be sure to save up for our entire trip....i reu=fuse to pay finance charges on my purchases...

Quoting CafeMom Team:


Kainalu55 asked: What's the best way to save up for multiple BIG purchases? We are currently looking to buy a home, but want to save for a family vacation as well.

Caryn answered: Thank you for your question, Kainalu55! There are many ways to save up for big purchases, but the key to saving for anything - vacation or home - is planning ahead.

For your vacation, set a budget by estimating the cost of all aspects of the trip - travel and lodging costs, food, museum tickets or souvenirs. Having savings is an ideal way to prepare, but if it's unfeasible for you and your family to cover all the expenses at once, financing a portion of these trips may come into play. If so, and you choose to finance any portion of the vacation with a credit card, be proactive about setting up a specific plan to pay your balance back. With Chase Blueprint (, you can set a payoff date for your balance and track your progress as you pay it down faster and save on interest. And always remember, fun doesn't have to cost a lot.

As for saving for a home, the fact is there is no perfect way to build savings.  The most important step in building savings is to establish a budget. Budgeting is basically about figuring out your money flow. To help prepare yourself for major expenses, you have to think about what you need versus what you want, and how you are going to pay for these things as they come up. Calculate your monthly essentials to understand the maximum amount you are able to put in your savings account and how much you can spend on discretionary items. Finally: stick to it. If you plan to put a certain amount in savings every month, then follow through with it.  And don't forget to check your progress.  You will be encouraged by the results as you see your savings grow!  

by Bronze Member on Apr. 18, 2012 at 5:28 PM

i always try to follow our list, but my hubby isn't good at that. he always ends up putting unnecesssary items in the cart, even though we're trying to budget!

Quoting CafeMom Team:


Rushn311 asked: How can I cut money at the grocery stores?

Caryn answered: Rushn311, I find the best way to save money at the grocery store is to go in with a plan: make a list and stick to it. Pick up only what you need and don't be tempted to buy those special offers  - like buy two get one free - if they aren't on your list. With a plan in place before you hit the grocery store, you'll save time and money and avoid the temptation to buy items not on your list.

If you're using a credit card for your grocery purchases, sometimes there are free tools that can help you avoid interest on your trips to the store. For example with Blueprint on Chase credit cards, you can avoid paying interest on everyday items like groceries and gasoline, even when you carry a balance.  Just pick the categories you want to pay in full each month and Blueprint does the work for you by separating out those purchases on your monthly statement.  Then all you have to do is pay your Blueprint payment and you'll pay no interest on those purchases. . With Blueprint, you can see the savings add up each month! Visit to start saving. 

by on Apr. 18, 2012 at 7:32 PM

Thank you for the advice!

Quoting CafeMom Team:

goddess99 asked: I have a credit card that I closed a couple years ago and I'm just paying off the balance. Is the APR fixed until the balance in $0 or is there a chance it could go up?

Caryn answered: Goddess99, that's a good question, but that's one that I cannot answer without knowing the terms of your credit card. My best advice to you is to call your credit card company and confirm with them - that way you'll know exactly what plan of action you need to take in paying off your balance.

by on Apr. 19, 2012 at 1:52 AM

This is all excellent advice!  Thank you for answering these moms questions :)

by on Apr. 19, 2012 at 9:23 AM
Thanks for the responses!
by Amy on Apr. 19, 2012 at 10:11 AM

 This is great! The questions and answers were very helpful!

by Member on Apr. 19, 2012 at 10:43 AM

Thank you for all of the good advice!

by Member on Apr. 19, 2012 at 12:37 PM

Thank you!

Quoting CafeMom Team:

Samanthamommy asked: What would you say your biggest piece of advice would be?

Caryn answered: Have a vision for your money. Ask yourself: "What do I want from my money?" "What can my money do for me?" If you have a vision or a plan for your money, you can better acknowledge where your money is coming and going, and gain control over your finances. 

To accomplish your vision, you should know how much money you make, how much you spend and how much you save. If those three figures don't support your vision, then you need to think about changes - maybe by trying to earn more, save more, or spend less.  If you work inside your vision's parameters, you'll be on the right track for financial success. 

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