About Angie

As a blogger for FiltersFast.com, I try to bring a fresh perspective to issues regarding air and water filtration focusing on topics that matter to those like me; a typical, yet supreme, multi-tasking, working mom. Environmental impact and health concerns are addressed in my writing, as well as fun, helpful tips to better juggle that crazy thing known as life!

Buying Generic/Compatible Products: Even Air and Refrigerator Filters!

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One of my favorite budgeting tips is to use compatible products.  Compatible, generic, comparable; whichever term you prefer, it basically means you are NOT using the “name brand” item, but rather a product of equal quality, but different brand.  A recent study by economists at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business found that Americans can save nearly $1 billion per year by buying generic products.

There are a lot of commonly known products that we think to buy generic.  Here are a few:

  • Groceries (baby formula, food and drinks)
  • Clothes/ fashion accessories
  • Cleaning products
  • Make-up/ sunscreen/ personal care items
  • Medications
  • Batteries

But did you also know there are some other commonly used household products that are available as generic?  FiltersFast.com, the leading source in online retail for air and water filtration products, offers a variety of compatible items.  Whether you are looking to replace your home’s air filters, refrigerator filters or even swimming pool filters; FilterFast.com provides the name brand item, but also offers you more economical options by way of compatible filters.

For example, if you are looking for the Maytag replacement filter in the above picture, you can find it at FiltersFast.com, but you will also find a perfectly comparable filter (non-Maytag) as well.  The side-by-side graphic above shows the price difference.  In this case, the Maytag being $29.95 and the compatible filter being $19.95!  Then the choice is yours!

Another example is for air filters.  Generally these must be replaced at least 4 times per year, which can quickly add up.  Did you know that FiltersFast.com offers all of the brands you trust for quality air filtration, as well as their own brand of air filters?  This 6 pack of Filters Fast brand filters will save you $17.00 over the comparable name brand of the same quality!

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As you can see, by checking into buying generic (comparable, compatible) products, you can save money without sacrificing quality.  In addition to your standard off-brand items, such as groceries, there are other nontraditional items to investigate as well.

Visit FiltersFast.com for a wide range of air and filtration products and brands!

*All prices shown are subject to change

How to Create a Budget

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When I went away to college, my parents told me to “make a budget”.  When I graduated from college, my parents told me to “make a budget.  When I was planning my wedding, my parents told me to “make a budget.”  When we were looking to buy our first home, my parents told me to… you guessed it, “make a budget.”

By this time in my life I should probably be an expert on budgeting, but I am not.  Like most people, I occasionally fail to see the big picture and give in to impulse buys or spend too much money on a pair of jeans, or eat out too many times per week.  But, that does not mean I should throw in the towel and just spend money all “willy nilly”.

Occasionally I hear my father’s voice reminding me to “tighten the purse strings” and that “money doesn’t grow on trees”.   This is my conscience reminding me to sit down to redo our loathsome, yet necessary household budget.  I am after all, a reasonably responsible adult with a child who will be going away to college in less than 8 years.

There are many factors that play a role when creating a budget from scratch, especially if it is your first time.  The task may seem overwhelming, but there are a few very basic tips to follow.

  1. List all “fixed” expenses.  These are expenses that do not change month to month.  These may include rent/ mortgage, car payment, insurances, utilities, loans, credit card bills etc.
  2. List all “variable” expenses.  These offer some flexibility such as groceries, entertainment, travel, eating out and general “fun money”.
  3. Know all sources of monthly income.
  4. Do the math… subtract fixed expenses from income.  Then factor in variable expenses.
  5. Don’t forget to factor in all of your savings/ retirement plans!

That’s it!  You now have a very basic household budget to work off of.  Once you have a budget created, whether you choose to use any of the many software options available, or if you prefer to create your own spreadsheet, keep it handy.  Look at it often.  Remember to reevaluate and adjust your budget over time as things in your life change and evolve, as they will naturally.

Remind yourself of your long-term goals.  This will help strengthen your will power and make it easier to walk away from those $100 jeans or that $6.00 cup of coffee. Personally, I hope to be able to retire and live comfortably when the time comes.  I want to be able to travel some and spend plenty of time on some beach.  That dream, along with my parents voices saying “make a budget” help keep me on track.

To help keep your budget on track, visit FiltersFast.com for all of your water and air filtration needs.

Appreciating the DIY Husband… Let Me Count the Ways

Toilet Repair... with assistance!

My husband: teaching the next generation to DIY

This month, my employer FiltersFast.com is honoring all of those DIY people out there.  As the proud wife of a DIY man, I would like to take this opportunity to say “Thank you, DIY people” for making life a little easier for the rest of us!  Upon further reflection, I realize both of my parents are also DIY, so all of my life I have seen what a little ingenuity, some creativity and a little (or lot) of hard work can accomplish.  Don’t get me wrong.  I have seen some massive DIY failures along the way; but I won’t go into those.

But this is about my husband and how his DIY prowess never fails to amaze me.  See he grew up on a dairy farm, which he claims is where he learned his skills. But, as an observer of people, I have decided that you either “are” or “are not” a DIY person by nature. Though with some effort, you can be somewhere in between, like myself.

Here is a brief rundown on some of the DIY projects/ skills my beloved has accomplished:

  • Changing the oil in cars/ trucks (TRACTORS)
  • General automotive maintenance; changing wipers, headlights, batteries etc.
  • Built a huge deck on our house
  • Painting
  • Install hardwood flooring
  • Remodeled bathroom (tore out old walls, replaced with nice new ones)
  • Cuts down trees (BIG ONES)
  • Basic plumbing; replace garbage disposal, repair toilets etc.
  • Install ceiling fans
  • Assembled trampoline (This is not as easy as it sounds. I know people who paid someone to do this, so I feel this counts.)

You get the picture.  After 14 years of marriage, I feel good in saying there are very few things that my husband cannot fix around the house, in the yard or on the car.  It may take a little time, but I know without question that job will be done correctly.

Now getting back to FiltersFast.com honoring the DIY, here are a few benefits of being one or in my case, living with one:

  1. Saving money:  why pay a professional when you can “do it yourself”
  2. From concept to reality = satisfaction!  Let’s face it, it feels good when you are able to “do it yourself.”
  3. Gaining and applying valuable knowledge into practical (often transferable) skills.
  4. Self-sufficiency.  Not having to rely on others may come in handy during the zombie apocalypse.  Just kidding. But really, it is nice if something breaks in the middle of the night.

FiltersFast.com and myself would like to take a moment to acknowledge all of the DIY people out there.  Why FiltersFast.com?  Because as a leading source in the air and water filtration industry, we know a little something about repairing, replacing and maintaining household items; specifically air and water filters!

Thank you DIY people and keep up the good work!