Da Bomb Diggity Fried Rice

I am sure I adapted this from somewhere, but no clue where. (Pics to follow)

*big wok pan
*extra virgin olive oil
*new or old rice

I make this so many different ways with many different ingredients.... but the staple is this:

Dice up some garlic cloves. I love garlic, so I do 4-5 cloves smashed and finely diced and chopped.

Gently toss 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil in skillet.. (and make the skillet big if you don't want half the rice to end up on the stove)

I  also love onion, so sometimes I will toss diced onion into the skilled and let it saute til soft..
then I toss in garlic.

Garlic will burn fast so you gotta be ready to rock and roll with the rice fast.. (I keep husband on back up for this reason)

Once garlic is looking like its about to burn, dump in rice (again I never measure and always use different amounts and it always ends up good.

Toss the rice with the pan goodness for a minute or two.

Move the rice to the side and drop in some eggs. If I feel protein happy I'll drop 3 eggs.. (minus the shells of course)

Swish those eggs around on the side until they are nice and cooked..then get chop happy with a spatula and mash those eggs into pieces...

Swirl with rice.
Then toss veggies. I like broccoli, sweet corn, and sometimes whatever else I have on hand...but anything you like..just throw it in now.

Then.. drizzle soy sauce on top to taste.

The recipe this is adapted from used fish sauce and soy sauce, but fish sauce is just an unnecessary added ingredient...

So there you have IT.


Rent Update

Well, I couldn't settle on $700.

I decided to do some more homework and call neighboring apartment complexes, and then sent my husband in to do the dirty work here.

Lo and behold, $690 was the best they could do. As they couldn't go any lower than what new tenants pay. Rock on!!

Of course, today, rent is back up to $730 as the lowest price.

I always seem to score when the price is down.

Another $120 saved.


How to Save Money on Rent (Take 2)

I did it again.

This time annual savings of $660.

Here are the steps I followed:

1. I received my notice of rent increase to renew my rent. It was a slight $15 increase from what I currently pay.

2. I did the research and discovered new tenants rates were considerably lower.

3. I wrote my letter 60 days before end of lease to notify them I would not be renewing. (Remember to read your lease terms to see when/if notice is required...AND GIVE WRITTEN NOTICE EVEN IF YOU PLAN TO STAY).

4. I handed letter to leasing agent, who then said, "Oh, I am sorry to see you won't be renewing. Can I ask why?" I told her I could not afford the rent increase. She then asked what I could afford. I gave her a price, and she said, "Let me talk to the manager and see what I can do."

5. Receive phone call same day that they would give me the price I wanted, which is $40 less than my current rent.

I had been watching the rates for awhile, and they were $50 lower than I had even requested. Looking back, I wish I would have decreased the price I offered. Now the prices are back up, so I can't negotiate again. If they were lower though, believe me I would.

Just remember, NEVER..EVER listen to the complex's hogwash about how your rent MUST increase every year because of Market standards, or whatever seemingly great explanation they give. My rent has decreased the past two years.

Also, I tried to help my next door neighbor with my ways to reduce rent. He gave a letter to the office stating that he was not sure if he would renew or not. He did not follow my instructions exactly, and thus lost out on his negotiation power.

Final Update on Saving Money on Rent is here


Saving Money on Apartment Rent

I feel qualified in suggesting this since my advice has saved me personally over $1200 a year, and close to $600 a year for a friend of mine. It's the art of negotiation. I say it often, but it never hurts to ask.

Typically when lease renewal time hits, your apartment complex will send you a notice of renewal. The new lease terms will ALWAYS include a rent increase. Why? Well if you ask the apartment complex, they will give you bologna about how it's just standard. I realize most people would just pay the increase. I am not most people.

My advice is to first understand the contract you have with your apartment complex or landlord. Most leases require you to give notice 2 months before your lease is up that you do NOT plan to renew. This is a key step, because if you forget to give notice, your hands are essentially tied once you start to negotiate and the complex does not go down on price.

Once you give notice, you put the complex on notice that you are serious and will move if they do not work with you on price. You should visit the apartment's website to try to obtain a current rent price as if you were a new customer moving in. If the apartment does not list prices online, have a friend call and ask current rent prices.

Once you know what they are charging for current units for new renters, use this information in your favor and ask for them to match the price. It took persistence on my part, and I even took it to the corporate level, but in the end they matched the price.

I went a step further and watched the apartment's website for months. This gave me the ability to know when rent prices were the lowest, and that was when I went in for the negotiations. In the end I ended up paying even less than my current rate, so instead of an increases, I ended up paying less than before!

Also, if you are having problems with your apartment, neighbors, safety issues, must make sure to notify your apartment complex in writing. Written complaints leave a paper trail that the complex cannot pretend do not exist, and can also aid in a rent reduction.

Money Saved=$1200

How to Save Money Part 2 UPDATE is here