Know Your Blogger Series
I Like To Dabble
I started iliketodabble.com back in April of 2017 when I intended to buy the domain as a hobby blog. I was going to blog for the fun of it, and thought first to make a crafting blog.
After thinking on our current situation of side hustling and trying to pay off our debt, I thought I’d make the blog more honed in on money, exploring different side hustles and looking help others in their journeys.
Check out our Q&A with I Like To Dabble here.
Come learn about side hustles and more about the blog I Like To Dabble in this interview!
Each week at Personal Finance Blogs, we publish interviews from amazing bloggers from the personal finance space. This week, we are featuring the blog, I Like To Dabble.
During these weekly features, we are hoping to provide a way for you to interact and learn more about different blogs in the personal finance space.
Below, you can read more about the story behind I Like To Dabble, learn about the author, and learn personal finance tips from I Like To Dabble to help you improve your financial situation.
A big thanks for I Like To Dabble for this interview! Now, we will turn it over to the author for this interview.
Tell us about I Like to Dabble
I started iliketodabble.com back in April of 2017 when I intended to buy the domain as a hobby blog. I was going to blog for the fun of it and then wanted to head in the direction of a craft blog.
Then I realized I didn’t want to blog about crafting. I love crafting, but I hated blogging about it.
After some introspection on our current situation of side hustling and trying to pay off our debt, I thought I’d make the blog more honed in on money, exploring different side hustles in addition to writing about our own and help others in their similar journeys.
I Like To Dabble’s main mission is to help you drop the stressful hustle and find what clicks. We’re all about dabbling for dollars, finding excitement in experimentation and how to use that extra money as a tool towards your own financial goals or towards building a business.
What makes you and your blog unique?
It isn’t exactly an all around money focused blog. I Like To Dabble is very much honed into the life of the side hustler but it also isn’t “just” a side hustle blog. It is a blog about life at work as a side hustler too.
We dive deep into many issues other side hustle and money making blogs don’t necessarily touch on such as the downsides of the gig economy, burnout, and mental health as both an employee and business owner.
What does “being good with your personal finances” mean to you?
This means I know what is coming in and going out. Before I was “bad with my finances” because I never checked. I never set a budget and spent whatever I wanted.
It all started with looking at our bank account and going through each and every item. Then we created a budget, set up text alerts and tracked everything we could. Starting to look at where your money is going and starting to sit down as a individual/couple/family to create a budget is being good with your finances.
All you have to do is start with a goal in mind.
What are some habits you practice to keep your personal finances in order?
We automate as much as we can which makes it easier to pay our bills and save on autopilot. But we also have text alerts set up with our credit union for those transactions so if something funky comes across, we’ll get a text (or an alert if an auto-pay fails).
Because sometimes automation fails.
What are your three articles people should read to get to know you and your message better on your site?
Three posts you should read to know more about my blog are:
For someone looking to improve their financial situation, what’s your best advice?
First, I’d want to know what that person’s goal is for improving their situation. What are they working towards? Are they trying to pay off debt? What are they wanting to save money for?
Then, look at their money – where is it going, what is it being used for and do they remember all the purchases when they look at them? Write it all down and a printable budget sheet is better than an app as you physically have to write everything down. Writing things down make them more real for me, I feel, and I am more likely to continue with good habits this way.
They should definitely cut out excess spending that is almost mindless and find ways to add money back into the existing budget with finding bills to lower through switching auto insurance providers, working with apps like Trim for lowering Wi-Fi and cell phone bills, etc. To jump start savings on top of that new found money in the budget, look for ways to increase their income either in their day job or take on a side hustle.
You don’t have to commit to a long term side hustle but something that is a fun side project that can fit into your life easily (think freelancing in a skills set you have, making YouTube videos or pet sitting on the weekends) can help you stash more into savings.
The more you make, the more you can save.
What’s an area of your life which has benefited from improving your personal finances? Have there been any areas of your life which have suffered?
One word, four letters: debt.
I didn’t care AT ALL about my student loan debt or any of our debt for that matter before we started reading about personal finance and wanting to better our situation. Since taking control of our finances though I paid off my $15,000 student loan debt in May 2019 (with the help from my blog) along with another $20,000 in interest from that student loan, hospital bills, credit card debt and the last of our debt: our Rav4.
The area of my life that suffered a little was my stress. I actually wasn’t that stressed about money until I started thinking about it and writing about it so much. It might seem that it is the opposite, that you’d be less stressed after paying off debt.
I was stressed when I was paying off debt, stressed to get it all paid off quickly then stressed because I want to make sure we never have to take on debt again.
What are your favorite personal blogs and bloggers you have been inspired by?
Some of my favorites are:
In your opinion, what’s better? Renting a place or buying a house to live?
Even though we own, renting is better! I say that as we are currently gutting our place to renovate some areas and try selling this beast. There are a lot of hidden costs with owning a home and you can’t get up and move at any time you want.
But we also have a lot of pets that make it almost impossible to rent.
In your opinion, what should you do first? Pay down debt, or invest?
There is a large chunk of people that are literally not able to pay down debt and invest at the same time. The only money left over from their budget may be only enough to cover debt bills.
However, as soon as they start adding more money to that budget (if they can) through side hustling and other ways and build up an emergency fund of *cash*, they should try to start investing as they pay off debt. The best time to invest was yesterday, the second best time is now.
What are your favorite personal finance books?
I LOVED Work Optional, by Tanja Hester, and it was one of the first introductions I had to the concept of FIRE (Financial Independence Retire Early) and exactly how to achieve it. It completely opened my eyes.
How You Can Contact I Like To Dabble for More Information
You can learn more about I Like To Dabble at https://iliketodabble.com/
, like them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/iliketodabble
, and follow them on Twitter at @iliketodabble
Thank you for reading this interview, and thank you, I Like To Dabble, for providing us with some great personal finance tips!