Tuesday, 27 January 2015

I Love...(Cosmetics) for Valentine's Day ~ #Review & #Giveaway

Valentine's Day is here in less than 3 weeks and some of you might wonder what to get for the lady in your life.  I think they would love their own small collection of I Love....(cosmetics).  I really think they might like the coconut scent.  It is so addictive and you might like it on her too!  What about Raspberry & Blackberry?  I love the sweet scent that makes me crave for an ice cream sorbet.

Monday, 26 January 2015

Cost of Living 2015 ~ #Life #Money

Happy 2015?

Like I said last year, each year, the cost of living increases and it is getting harder to live in the City.

Major increases will be affecting me this year:

1. My local monthly public transit system has not finalized their 2015 budget proposal.  They are thinking of another $0.10 increase and a $7.25 increase for my Metropasses per month.  A huge jump from $5 from last year.  The plus side is that kids under 12 will ride for free.  It would somewhat benefit me in a small way but I don't travel on the TTC with my kids often enough to make it worth it.  They say it is to improve the service but I think it is more likely to pay for their yearly salary increase. To start their hourly rate is $24.06/hr then it increases after 12 months probation to $26.53 then $31.40 after 24 months.  7 hrs x 5 days per week x $24.06 = $43,789, clearly I am working in the wrong career.  All I need to get is a bus licence and drive a bus/subway all day.

2. My home insurance went up $12/mo.  Which is still high since I am paying over $160 a month.  Last year increase was $50.

3. A price increase for Canada Post, effective January 12, 2015, stamps for letter mail will cost $0.77 for mailing in Canada and $1.18 for mailing in U.S.  These changes are for postage meters and in a way it is a good thing since I see less junk mail but it is terrible for small businesses.

4. They also said my Property Taxes will increase this year by 2.75% where people with houses valued at $525,000 will pay an average of $83 additional per year.  They also said that the solid waste management will also increase by 2.25%

5. My hot water tank (Direct Energy) rental has increased by another $0.50.  When I first moved into my house over 8 years ago, it was around $10 now it is close to $16.

6. Back in December it was discussed that Ontario Hydro bills could go up 42% within 5 years.  So if you were paying $125 it could go upwards to $178 a month plus HST, this is going to hurt alot of people.

Typical Family’s Monthly Hydro Bill 2013 - $125 2014 - $137 2015 - $145 2016 - $167 2017 - $170 2018 - $178 2019 - $177 2020 - $181 2025 - $194 2030 - $205 (Source: Ontario Long-Term Energy Plan. 2013)

7. Enbridge rates are going up and it has already taken effective beginning of the year.  The increase will be approximately $63 annually.

Other increases will be either affecting me or others.
Rent - maximum of 1.6% increase is allowable in Ontario in 2015 - see guideline here
Condo Fees
Car Insurance
Increase in EI & CPP premiums - less take home pay
Camps, after school programs, Day Cares
Food - the usual fruit, meat, and eggs
And the list could go on and on.

I also have to look into summer camps for my daughter.  Both of the summer camps I take my daughter to increased their fees and one was more than the other.  This summer the kids has one more extra week of summer vacation so more expenses for me this summer.

Expenses has been increasing but my salary has been the same for the past 5 years.  *Sigh*

Which increases will affect you the most?

Anything I have mentioned above is through research via online newspapers.  Please do your own research to get accruate numbers.