Thursday, February 4, 2016

What to do when you get promoted

I was blessed to be raised the way I was. While my parents did an amazing job with instilling values that have allowed me literally to see the world, they weren’t the only people I looked to for guidance. Per usual, children and parents bump heads as they grow up and the child thinks they know everything and parents don’t know a thing. In those times of being a prodigal son, my older cousins were my role models. Each of them very different but ironically all the same. As an adult I realized my cousins were raised with the same morals and values that were instilled in me due to the fact our parents grew up in the same household. Most of the time when I speak to my mentors I just listen after I ask an initial question. One of my cousin, who we will call Crazy Panther Fan (CPF), I do most of the talking. This cousin isn’t much of a talker, he’s a thinking man. And I’ve realized that if I say something off course, he’ll give me a look followed by a Jesus like rhetorical question to make me rethink my previous stance.  So rewind to five years ago, I was just starting my career and spending a lot of time around CPF. I mentioned how I was expecting a raise and how it was going to make things a lot easier for me move around with the additional money. What CPF said to me is one of the reasons I started this blog for my quest for financial knowledge. Looking me dead in my eyes he said “You made it through last year on your current salary, so do you really need the extra money?”, “Save your raise. Treat it as if you’re still working off your old salary”. As I drove home once again I realized he was right. I didn’t really need the money sure it’s nice receiving that raise but I didn’t really need it to survive. What I needed to do was figure out how I could improve my life style on the prior year’s salary. And ladies and gentlemen that’s what I’ve done. I created an auto debit for every pay increase that goes right to my savings. I don’t even let the money take a pit stop in my checking account. My savings account is with a different banking system, which I don’t see regularly so I don’t get tempted to spend it. Am I hurting for anything?? Nope. I go on more vacations than 1 human being should be allowed to take. I say that to say this, just because you have the money doesn’t mean you have to spend it. Just because you aren’t spending your raises doesn’t mean you’re not living life. You just have to get creative with your spending and explore where you can cut corners.
 -@JonMcKinney87 for @theNewCheap

Ladies let’s have a discussion.....

Your man loves you and the whole world knows it! He’s checked every box you and those bitter single friends could come up with and smiled while doing it.  So with Valentine's Day coming up there's something we need to discuss... But first let me ask you a question, if I told you I'd give you $30 today but if you waited till tomorrow I'd give you $100…. What would you do? No brainer here, you would wait that one additional day for the extra $70. 

So ladies if you're willing to wait that one day, you could get 70% more stuff for Valentine's Day. We have to admit folks you know Valentine's Day is a joke. From the ladies sending themselves stuff to front likes they have a "bae" to the single girls posting love hate post on Instagram. Why buy into that?? Now this isn't a "Valentine's day doesn't make our relationship” speech that side chicks across the globe will hear, because you're actually gonna get something ladies.  But by waiting one day, you can get 3 times as much for your money. Stores mark down all of the Valentine's Day stuff the minute the clocks hits 12:01. And the smart Casanovas know this is the time to rack up on the manufactured love. Why does this matter for you ladies?? Because you get MORE and what lady doesn't like MORE?? So tell your man to skip the Valentine's Day purchase, and do it the day after when things are marked down at 70% off. Fellas use that money you saved to take her to dinner. If she's able to see past the BS of the floral and chocolate industry’s created holiday, then she deserves a nice dinner when places aren't crowded and menus are back to regular price. It’s important to remember that at the end of day your woman will want to spend some quality time on Valentine’s Day. Give her that time fellas because I’m pretty sure she’s doing everything in her power to make sure Super Bowl Sunday is a great one for your.

-@JonMcKinney87 for @theNewCheap

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Rant in Progress - The Jonas Blizzard

I grew up different which is why I see the world a lot different than most. Maybe you grew up the same way and you're just as confused on the worlds current status. If you're not one of those people close out of this blog.

Prepare for a rant....

 I grew up around legal hustlers and illegal hustlers. I choose the legal route for my hustle because I saw the end result of the illegal hustle and the people who's raised me would kill me if I chose that route! As a youngster one of the legal hustles I had was cutting grass. I would go rent a lawnmower from the community center and walk up and down the neighborhood looking for grass to cut. This money allowed me to move around without having to ask my parents for cash. I felt independent, I felt empowered, I felt like a man. So as many of you know the east coast was hit with a blizzard this last weekend,( thanks for those that called and check on me and the family) so I was left to clean up 30 inches of snow. I'm no stranger to hard labor, and I enjoy it, but I also enjoy supporting hustlers. But there weren't any..... I spent Sunday morning cleaning off my car wondering why there weren't any teenagers offering to take over the job.

 If I was ten years younger and had 10,000 less miles on these knees I would've called all my friends and we would've walked door to door cleaning off spots. Shockingly the first day after the storm there weren't any kids outside cleaning! I was looking for kids to pay to get my car out of the parking lot. Sure I could've done it myself, but like I said I support the hustlers. I blame this on the parents of today. You spoil your kids too damn much. They don't know hard work, and a kid that doesn't know hard work will know government assistance. As a parent I would've gave my son the tools and taught him how to clean up the snow and set him on his way.
What does this have to do with saving money?? If you teach a man to fish he'll be able to feed himself... If you teach your children how to make money, you won't have to support grown ass people!

I finally met hustlers. While I was cleaning out my spot for day number two. I met some young men who were looking to make some extra money before going into the military this summer. They provided the price for cleaning out my car and did the work. As I mentioned I respect hustlers, in fact it excites me to see hustlers. I gave them double for what they offered to do the job. Why? Because they get it! They understand that living a New Cheap life means making more money and the Jonas blizzard was a perfect opportunity for making money. I respect that!
Raise your children to be hustlers.... Rant over... Now back to your day


Monday, December 14, 2015

Gambling can save you money

I know this post comes a little too late and I apologize in advance. I should’ve provided this knowledge at the beginning of the football season. But like old people say….. It’s better late than never.

One of the best ways to convert your spouse into a sports fan is to make bets about the game. Some people find it hard to have interest in something they have no stake in.  So I’m sure your partner will find the Celtics versus the Lakers game more interesting if dinner depended on the outcome. This will intrigue them to care about the game and put a competitive edge on the date. You can use this tactic whenever dinning out  with a date viewing a sporting event. In college my best friend and I had an evening out with older women. I scrapped my change together trying to figure out how to compete with a woman making far more money than my student refund check. When I got to the counter I realized his date was paying. When we got back into the car, my friend told me they made a bet which she obviously lost. I immediately put that into my tool kit for dates. Even though things have changed and I can now afford to buy Moe’s at 2am for my date, I still enjoy the competitive excitement. Girls don’t typically care about sports (I’m blessed, my lady does *praise hands*) but they’ll enjoy it so much more when their money is on the line. Please don’t use this as a way to never pay for dates (my grandmother would kill me for leading the masses astray). On this date let the loser handle the check. You may get to trade places for the evening by allowing your lady to pay while enjoying the game you love! I know we live in a world where sometimes women make just as much money as men do but we should be men! Now once you’ve dated for a while, of course allow your lady to get her beyonce’ on and take you out sometimes. But be careful not to through this date into rotation to early with a new partner. If you’ve been involved for sometime the bowl game season is the perfect time for you to toss this into the date bag. Let’s face it by this point your NFL team is in the tank, so betting on meaningless college games could be fun and save you money.


Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Acts 20:35

The holiday season is upon us folks, which happens to be my favorite time of the year! Nothing but good food, football, and family. Oh and my birthday falls at the end of the holiday period. One thing you must come to realize during the holiday is what's most important! Remember, giving is the reason for the season! Recently I was asked what I wanted for my birthday, and folks I couldn't think of one single thing! At this point in my life I have everything I ever needed or wanted. So for me to come up with a list of items to expect from loved ones would be stupid. So lets change it up this year, instead of a wish list how about you volunteer for those less fortunate. I know what you’re thinking, what does this have to do with saving money? While you're volunteering sit down and talk with some of these folks and realize just how close you are to being in the same situation. We forget how easy it is to fall on rough times. Studies show that most people are just TWO missed paychecks away from being homeless. And during a season of love and happiness that is extremely saddening. No one ever plans on being unable to provide their family dinner on thanksgiving but it happens. So instead of blowing money on holiday "reunions" at bars how about you and you friends adopt a family for the holidays. Provide them with a turkey and fixings on thanksgiving or buy the kids toys on Christmas! Nothing makes you feel better than doing charity from the heart! What you’ll realize is giving is better than receiving. And knowing that you allowed strangers to have a good holiday experience would provide you with so much joy.

As you know, anything we tell you here at theNewCheap is something we do ourselves. So theNewCheap is looking for a family to adopt for the Thanksgiving! If you know of a family in Fayetteville, NC or Baltimore, MD area please let us know by emailing us! Now please don’t suggest yourself when you've been messing up commas for 56 nights straight on IG (if you didn't get the joke ask someone under the age of 25). We’ll provide two families with a full thanksgiving dinner. The email is provided below to let us know about the family needing a little help.

(The family doesn’t have to worry about being put all over social media for receiving the gift. We believe that good deeds shouldn’t be broadcasted for social media likes, we believe in a higher power who has us covered on the recognition.)

Friday, October 30, 2015

20th Anniversary of the Million Man March

During the first million-man march I was only a child, but I grew up hearing about the historic event. I promised myself that I would attend the march if I ever had the chance. Well on October 10th of this year, I got that chance! It was a blessing to be raised in a community of strong men. My father, uncles, and grandfather all provided me with positive role models. As the day grew closer my excitement grew about the potential of having a million men with similar feelings of community responsibility. 

This memorable day began rather hectic. Per usual, I was late even when I attempted to be early. I sped the entire way to the bus station blasting gospel songs hoping to flood the atmosphere with Jesus vibes to ward off potential tickets. I arrived just as the bus driver was preparing to close his door. I remember sweating from all the excitement as I sat in my seat. Once I sat down, gathered myself and looked around, a calm came over me that lasted the entire day. As I rushed off the bus and attempted to navigate the DC subway system, I was at a stand still with which way to go next. I looked up for help and my eyes were met by another man who shared the same gaze of confusion. A young man who favored this gentleman’s looks stood behind him consumed by his cell phone.  These two men joined me on this journey even though we did not share our names with one another. We greeted each other as brothers and began to navigate the subway.

The elderly man spoke of how he attended the first march 20 years ago and how excited he was to experience this nostalgia again with his son. I saw the pride in his eyes as he mentioned the first march he attended, telling his son how amazing the atmosphere was back then. He went on to say how monumental today would be and the enormous amount of men who will be in attendance today in Washington DC. We arrived to the march within moments of the keynote speaker taking the podium. Did I want to hear this speech? Absolutely, but I really wanted to see the beautiful faces of those who supported the cause.
As I walked around I was greeted in peace and love, called King and Brother by strangers. I saw my people in every shade and age ranging from the elderly being escorted through the crowd to babies on their mother’s hip. I saw white people with their children, Native Americans in their traditional clothing, same sex couples holding hands, and interracial couples embracing each other all the while listening to the keynote speaker. What I saw and felt on this day was love. I have never felt that much love from strangers. It was so overwhelming; I had to have a seat to reflect on what I was experiencing.  This was about the right for every American to pursue happiness! 

I sat there overlooking the masses of people thinking about the past, present and future. I thought about the beauty of this moment. I envisioned what it would be like to share this moment with my future wife and children and suddenly tears began to rapidly fall from my eyes. I couldn’t control these feelings and I didn’t want to. I began this day intending to fully embrace the moment and every emotion that came with it. An older man sat down beside me and put his arm over my shoulder. We did not speak to each other, just sat in silence embracing this powerful moment. Thoughts were flooding my mind, why couldn't it always be this way? Why cant people of all colors come together in peace and love outside of an organized event? Why couldn't this love be felt every day all over the world? I thought about the dreams the enslaved had for their children of freedom and the many marches and protests their children endured for us to have equal rights.

 I thought about the present, about my life as a black man. My future and if my children will still need to march for equality regardless of ethnicity, gender and who they love. While the elderly man stood up, hugged me and continued on his journey, I wondered if we shared the same images in our minds as we looked around the crowd. I wondered if he felt hope seeing how far we’ve come but still felt sorrow of where we need to go.

October 10th was my call to action. I will love more, forgive more, understand more and feel more. My purpose is to ensure we don’t need another march in 20 years. My duty is to help in any way possible to ensure every person has the same opportunities as the next regardless of what they look like and where they are from. Happiness and love is the ultimate goal here. The love felt on 10.10.15 should be felt every day. I’ve accepted my call to do my part, and will make that goal a reality.

Please see the 1568 visuals from Million Man March
20th Anniversary of the Million Man March


Monday, October 19, 2015

Let’s buy a suit- but FIRST, you need a tailor...

Let's buy a suit- but FIRST, you need a tailor….

There is no better feeling than getting out the shower listening to James Brown’s “The Payback” (if that’s not your wave, maybe “Suit and Tie” by Justin Timberlake), thumbing through your closet, looking for the suit you’ll wear for the day. This is the reason why if I have to wear a suit to an event, you better expect me to be at least thirty minutes late. It is a FULL ON dance party while getting dressed. For those of you that are judging right now… don’t judge me on my vices (IF you can call it that) and I won’t judge yours. I’ve never stood in line for a different color of a sneaker that came out when I was middle school (No Shade). Like any person trying to get you addicted to something, I won’t attempt to jump you to my level of affection for wearing suits. Think of this as the “Gateway Drug” of Suit Addiction. So we’ll start with the very first thing you need to do before you worry yourself about fabrics, three buttons or two buttons , double or single breasted; finding a tailor.

A tailor is one of the most important people in your life! Why, you may ask? Because a good tailor will not only make you look good in a suit but they will also save you time and money! And if you’ve been reading this blog, you know that’s very near and dear to us! If you don’t have a tailor, you may not fully understand the duties or benefits of having one dedicated tailor. So allow me to educate. I buy suits like most men buy sneakers. I’ve never been into sneakers (but don’t test me, I have a collection that would still impress), suits have always been my thing. Like most children I looked forward to Easter, but only because I looked forward to getting that brand new suit. Of course the suits were Stacey Adams collection (think Kings of Comedy- baggy, loud colors), but I was happy none the less to be in a new suit. As an adult male, events where you’re required to wear a suit will sometimes pop right up on you. For example, I was recently invited to a black tie gala, and didn’t own a black suit (Black suits are like air force ones, if you have a pair cool- but it’s not like you really need them). So I had to run to my tailor and drop garments off to be tailored. Most tailors would require at least two weeks, which if I relied on the stores tailor, would’ve caused me to miss my event. But with my personal tailor knowing the way I like my suits cut, this allowed me to get garments altered within a day.

You may be thinking there’s no way you’ll ever need a suit in your line of work. Sure, you can wear a shirt and tie to that wedding, but you’re not a teenager anymore bud, that isn’t going to fly. Think of it this way, you know when your lady puts on that black dress how much you like it. She feels the same way when she sees you in a well-tailored suit. Your tailor is the person that can provide that look! Now here’s how you save money…

Idiots will tell you that you need to buy a name brand suit. If it’s not made by some fancy designer, then it isn’t a good suit. I call bullshit! No matter who a suit is made by, a (good)tailor can make it look like a designer suit on you! Don’t go wasting your money on a suit, thinking the more it cost, the better it will be. Whenever I have time to kill in a city, I normally stop into suit shops and browse their inventory. I’ve came across some great finds on clearance racks. Are these suits made by the who’s who of the industry?? Nope. But do I get the same reaction when I put them on?? YUP! Why?? Because I take these suits to the tailor so that I can get the cut that looks good on me.

So don’t spend too much thought into getting expensive suits, but focus on getting a great tailor. If you see a guy that wears suits often and you like the cut of his suits, ask him for his tailor’s contact. One of the cool things about the suit community is we don’t mind sharing our tailor’s information, which might not be the case in the sneaker head community. Once you have the contact information of the tailor, give him a call and set up a meeting. Going into this meeting, you need to bring your ideal look. Your ideal look should be a picture of what you want you suits to look like on you. But fellas PLEASE keep in mind, if you’re big and tall, don’t take a picture of Kevin Hart in a suit. Be honest with yourself and your tailor. Also discuss turnaround time and price.

Final word of advice, take your lady with you. Sure you’re having a suit tailored, which is a normally a man event, but as men we have to understand who it is we’re putting the garments on for. Not one time have I ever cared about what other men think of me in my suit. Men get dressed in suits for women because they are the only ones who care. And if you’re in a committed relationship, your lady’s is the only opinion you care about, but she cares about what the other women think of her plus one. So bring her along to save embarrassment later on at her friend’s wedding.
- @theNewCheap