Monday, December 30, 2013

The Lottery, It's Just Not Worth It

The Lottery, It's Just Not Worth It

By Keith Bunn Jr.
December 30, 2014

A few weeks ago, during a break at work, a friend of mine asked if I had bought a Mega Millions lottery ticket for that half a billion dollar jackpot ($636 million to be exact). I told him, no. He knew how I felt about the lottery. That it is a big waste of money. Then he asked, "Don't you think paying $1 is worth a chance to win a half a billion dollars?" (1 in 259 million chance then). I still said, no and here's why I said that.

Why Playing the Lottery is Not Worth It

The reason I think it's not worth playing is because if it is worth spending $1 for a chance at a half a billion dollars, then it's worth spending $5, $10, $20 or more, and people do spend that all the time, just for a "chance" to win. But what they are really doing is robbing themselves of their own futures. Let me explain...

Let's say the people who play the lottery, spend on average $10 per week. That's $40 per month. If they were to take that same amount and invested it, getting a 10% rate of return from age 18 to 65, they would have $463,931 by the time they retired. And if they did that in a Roth IRA, that would be about a half a billion dollars! TAX FREE!! This happens every time! Not in 1 in 259 million tries!! 

And we know that people do this. These numbers are not that far off. We see people do this all the time, especially during the huge jackpots like we saw a few weeks ago. This is why I think playing the lottery is a waste of money and is not worth playing.

Now, if you play the lottery, and even continue to play it after reading this, that's fine. It's your money and we can still be friends. But just be aware that you are only hurting yourself, and perhaps your family by playing.

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I'd also like to take this opportunity to wish you all a safe & Happy New Year! See you in 2014

Monday, December 23, 2013

A Christmas Prayer

A Christmas Prayer 

By Keith Bunn Jr.
December 23, 2013

This week's blog is going to be extremely short. In fact, all I have is a Christmas prayer I want to send to you and your families.

Lord, as we all prepare to celebrate your Son, our Savior Jesus' birthday. I ask that you watch over everyone reading this and their families. If they are hurting in any way, please give them the strength to to overcome their pain. Bless them so later they can be a blessing to someone else, and fill them with hope and love the way only you can do.
In Jesus' name amen.

We here in the Bunn household wish you all a Safe and Merry Christmas! I also want to thank each and everyone of you for continuing to follow me over the years. I really can't do this without you. Thank You!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Inspiration From A Christmas Carol

Inspiration From A Christmas Carol

By Keith Bunn Jr.
December 16, 2013

A Christmas Carol

Last night my wife and I watched one of the many versions of the classic Charles Dickens' story, A Christmas Carol. If you don't know this story, it is the story of a old, greedy, bitter man named Ebenezer Scrooge. Because of his awful ways, the ghost of his dead business partner pays him a visit and tells him that he will be visited by 3 other spirits, the ghost of Christmas Past, Present, and Future. After being shown the error of his ways, he has a change of heart just in time for Christmas.

I have always loved this story, but what caught my attention this time around, was toward the end of Scrooge's visit from the Ghost of Christmas Present

Scrooge noticed something under the ghost's massive robe and he asked what it was. When the ghost pulled his robe back, there stood, what looked like 2 poor children. The boy, the ghost explained, represented Mankind's Ignorance, and the girl, represented Mankind's Wants, and the ghost warned Scrooge of both.

That part really fascinated me because we all still suffer from this to some degree. So let's go over each one of those topics for a bit.


The root word for Ignorance is ignorant, and this has been a very sensitive word for some people because they think it means, Stupid. It doesn't. The Webster's dictionary says it means lacking knowledge. So it doesn't mean stupid at all. It simply means that you and I don't know something. And I think we can all agree that there is some bits of knowledge in this world we don't know about.

We can't know everything there is to know, but there is some ways to increase our knowledge, and it is to continue to learn all we can. By either taking some classes, going to workshops, listening to podcasts, or just simply reading books. The best thing about learning is, some of it can be done with little to no money. So get in the habit of being a constant learner.


Let's just face it, we all want something, whether it is some kind of material thing or some kind of knowledge like we talked about above. The key here is, we don't want our Wants to over take our lives. We have to have a balance with our wants and what we can afford it get. It is when we are out of balance that can get us all into trouble, both financially and relational. I say relational because it can and will affect your relationships if things fall out of balance.

So Let's Review...

The only way to fight ignorance is to live a life of constant learning. Don't just learn about topics you like, but learn about topics you need to know too, like perhaps, your finances.

You have to have a clear balance in your life between what you want and what you can afford to have. This is so important in both your relational and financial life.

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Monday, December 9, 2013

There is a Difference Between Being Frugal and Being a Tightwad

There is a Difference Between Being Frugal and Being a Tightwad

By Keith Bunn Jr.
December 9, 2013

Which are you? Frugal or a Tightwad?

I know a bunch of people, that others have classified them as either frugal or a tightwad, but which are they really? 

Well, the Webster dictionary defines Frugal as: [a person who is] careful about spending money or using things when you do not need to : using money or supplies in a very careful way. 
It also defines Tightwad as: a person who does not like to spend or give money.

Now either one of these types of people can be very smart when it comes to their finances. They can know where every penny is going, what its doing, and how much they have, both in liquid and non-liquid funds. But if you look at those two definitions closely, you can really see the difference between the two. 

The Tightwad is a hoarder of money. They bring it all in, in various forms, but it rarely goes out. To them, they can't have enough. This is a Spiritual Disease. The only joy they get is by getting more money. They don't have many friends and rarely go out and do anything for fun. And they will never feel the joy of helping others who are in need.

The Frugal person, even though it looks like they don't spend money, do spend and give a percentage of their money, but not to the point where they harm themselves by either being the tightwad or by over spending. They do go out with friends, take trips, and give to their church and/or favorite charities. But they plan these things out. Again, this is a type of person who knows what every penny they have is doing, and where its going. They enjoy life and know that whatever they are doing, they still have enough to cover emergencies or for the next event on their calendar when it happens.

So, do you now know the difference between a frugal person and a tightwad? Have you called a frugal person a tightwad before or thought a tightwad was just being frugal? Chances are, you have at one time or another. 

If after reading this, you discover that you are a tightwad, you don't have to stay that way. We can all change for the better. You could talk to a family member, a friend, or even a local pastor about making these changes in your life. But be careful! If anyone of those people want you to do something that favors them more than you, get way from them. A good and trustworthy person will always want you to make changes in your life that betters you more than them.

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Monday, December 2, 2013

What Would You do if You Lost $18,000?

What Would You do if You Lost $18,000?

By Keith Bunn Jr.
December 2, 2013

What would you do if you lost $18,000? Would you cry? Would you be angry? Or all the above? Believe me, that is exactly what Julie and I felt when we lost that. Let me explain what happened...

Two years ago, Julie and I moved closer to our jobs. We were both traveling about 2 hours each round trip and using a quarter of a tank of gas per car, per round trip. So needless to say, the amount we were paying in gas, not to mention the wear and tear on the cars were costly. So we moved. It seemed like the best solution to our problem. But after some time, Julie lost her job she had been working in for over 20 years. It was like the rug was pulled out from underneath her. But after the tears dried up and the anger subsided, she got busy filling out applications, taking tests, going to interviews, and after weeks and weeks of hard work, she got the job she has today.

Now when all the dust settled, Julie figured out what the difference was from what she was making and what she's making now and it came out to be $18,000 a year less. Now I don't care who you are, that's a lot of money!
But before we even knew what the difference was, we had an Emergency Budget Meeting. We decided that with some saving we had, we would pay off some of our debt early & the rest of the saving, plus my paychecks, unemployment, and tightening our budget even further, we could make it until she found a decent job.

Fast forward to today, I can happily tell you that we are doing fine. We are still paying all our bills, paying down on our one and only debt, and still able to pay for Christmas with cash
I have to tell you though, if we would have gone into Pitty Party Mode instead of Emergency Mode, like a lot of people do in this situation, we would have been seriously hurting financially by now.

I'm telling you all this because I know we aren't the only ones who have been in this situation. You can survive this at any time of the year. Even if you went into Pitty Party Mode, you can turn things around! You can do it!! With help, guidance, and prayer, you can do anything!! I know you can because if we (Mr. & Mrs. Spend A Lot) could do it, you can too.

The reason I write this blog, is to give people hope and to try to inspire others. To make people think about their finances, whether they are young or old, so they can win financially.
If you have any questions for me about my posts or if you need help learning how to live on less than you make and/or creating a budget, you can call me at (616) 454-2046 or e-mail me at I’d be happy to help! 
You can also find more money news, facts and ideas, on my Facebook and/or Twitter pages. I'd be grateful if you followed me. Thank you!