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Better Living Through Brainier Budgeting: The Smart Money Quiz
by Staff
So there's a loud, obnoxious recession party going on outside. Don't drown your pain at the kegger -- instead, sharpen your financial brainpower here, and have more money and more fun.

What's one way to save a lot of money on food and make meal planning easier, too?

  • create weekly meal plans and buy food in advance
  • buy frozen pizza instead of delivery
  • call out for pizza

How can you possibly stay in good physical shape and spend less money?

  • eat smaller meals many, many times per day
  • take up running
  • join a great gym that only charges monthly fees

When creating their first budget, which category do many people underfund?

  • car expenses
  • groceries
  • beauty products

What's the number one rule of budgeting?

  • spend less than you earn
  • earn a lot more money
  • follow the example of the U.S. Congress

About what percentage of an average U.S. household budget goes towards food?

  • 8 percent
  • 13 percent
  • 20 percent

What's one proven way to reduce your grocery store bill?

  • use many coupons
  • drive from store to store to find the best deal on each and every product
  • shoplift

What's one warning sign that you're living beyond your means?

  • You often switch jobs in hopes of earning more.
  • You carry a balance on your credit card.
  • You just robbed a bank.

Many financial experts recommend that monthly essentials not exceed what percentage of your income?

  • 40 percent
  • 28 percent
  • 60 percent

What's one aspect of savings that many people overlook?

  • saving for a boat
  • saving for a new car
  • saving for emergencies

What sort of debt should you pay off first?

  • your smallest debts
  • debt with high interest rates
  • debts tied to the mafia

When you're sick and tired of pinching pennies, you may wind up splurging thanks to what phenomenon?

  • frugal fatigue
  • budget burnout
  • both of the above

When it comes to living comfortably on a budget, what's the first thing you should do?

  • prioritize your life
  • set up a Ponzi scheme
  • marry a rich spouse

In America, what's one work-related expense that hurts many family budgets?

  • commuting
  • ballpoint pens
  • getting fired

What's one way you can save money on many products you buy?

  • haggle with every cashier
  • ask your friends to shoplift small items
  • shop online

What's one way adults can limit their impulse spending?

  • carry cash instead of credit cards
  • give yourself a weekly allowance
  • both of the above

About how much of your income should you save?

  • 10 percent
  • 20 percent
  • 35 percent

What's one common American expense than can be eliminated altogether?

  • cable television
  • utilities
  • rent

What's one way to make retirement savings easier?

  • automate your retirement account
  • set up a new savings account just for retirement
  • don't worry, you will never retire

How can you best determine if your new budget is working?

  • buy a new car and see what interest rate you receive
  • check to see if your credit limit has increased
  • track all of your income and expenses in a spreadsheet or program

As you adjust to a more frugal lifestyle, what's one piece of advice that experts recommend?

  • be patient with yourself and your family
  • expect fast results and immediate savings
  • cry a lot about the money you can't spend