Good morning, Club Thrifty enthusiasts!  A lot of you have emailed to ask where in the hell I’ve been.  Welp, since you asked, I’ve just been busy getting our new house ready to move into.  Greg and I have painted the whole friggin’ thing over the past few weeks, as well as done a bunch of the prep work for the professionals who are currently installing our new floors and plumbing.remodel sink

countertopsOh yeah, we got our new countertops in last week and I’m pretty much in love with them.  They don’t look exactly like the ones I picked out, but I really like them so I’m not going to complain.  I ended up going with the cheapest granite that I could find for a cost of about $40 per foot installed.  Now we’re just waiting on our backsplash to come in at the tile store.  Once it arrives on Wednesday, our tile guy is going to install the tile and grout it just in time for us to move in on Saturday.

Credit Card Rewards

Even though most experts suggest that you don’t sign up for any new credit cards within a year of applying for a mortgage, we decided to move unexpectedly and pretty much ignored that rule.  Fortunately, we didn’t have any problems getting a mortgage despite the fact that we have so many open cards and so many recent ones.

Anyways, once we got an accepted offer on our future home and calculated the costs for our remodel, I signed us up for a few choice cards in order to take advantage of our higher-than-average spending.  Since I mentioned that a few weeks ago, many of you have asked which cards I chose.  Here is a basic rundown:

  • American Express Business Gold Rewards Card- Since I alternate applications between myself, Greg, and our business, I kept that in mind when signing up for new cards.  And since Club Thrifty LLC was next in line, I signed up for a business card first.  I initially applied for the Chase Ink Plus card but as Suze Orman often says, I was “denied, denied, denied” because I had redeemed my points for free flights from my Chase Ink Bold card only a few weeks earlier.  Booooo!  Anyway, this isn’t a great card or a great bonus but it seemed like the best thing to do considering the offers that were available at the time.  The deal was this: I had to spend $5,000 in three months to get 30,000 Amex rewards points good for $300 in gift cards or flights. (I plan to transfer my points to either my Starwood Preferred guest account or to British Airways frequent flier miles, not sure yet)
  • Chase Hyatt Credit Card- I spent $1,000 in three months to earn two nights at any Hyatt hotel in the world.
  • Citi AAdvantage World MasterCard- I earned 50,000 American Airlines miles with a card…all I had to do was spend $3,000 within a three-month timeframe, which was easy to do in the midst of remodeling our home.  We’ll use these miles for our trip to Europe this fall, or to Fincon in September.  Again, I’m not sure yet.
  • Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Card- Greg and I both signed up for this one on the tail end of our remodeling efforts.  Lucky for us, it was just in time.  The deal is this: spend $2,000 within three months and earn 50,000 rapid rewards points or two round-trip domestic flights.  The points can also be redeemed for merchandise or $500 in gift cards.  Woot!  We just finished up with one of these cards and moved onto the next.  Fortunately, our spending should be back to normal now since our home remodel is finished and paid for.

In a regular month, our monthly spend is limited to:

  • $500 for groceries
  • $200 for gas/miscellaneous
  • $394 for health insurance

That’s a total of $1,094!  In the next few weeks, we’re planning to get another Citi AAdvantage card for Greg so that he can also earn 50,000 American Airlines miles.  We’ll see.

What card do you think we should sign up for next?  Which cards are you currently working on?