In today’s debt-ridden society, being frugal and saving a buck is becoming important, but the problem is that most often, avoiding paying full price on anything is right under our noses and we are just too busy to see the options.
You cannot walk into Wal-Mart and tell the clerks you will not pay their prices, demanding a discount, but you can change your habits of shopping in small ways that pay off in the end by saving you plenty of money.
Comparison-shopping is one of the easiest ways to save a buck.
The majority of items and services sold today can be found cheaper somewhere else. For instance, car insurance is something that varies in cost from company to company. Shop around, and if you receive a lower quote than what you are currently paying for the same coverage, call your current auto insurance carrier and let them know. They will most likely match the competitor’s price in order to keep your business. This tactic applies to life insurance, health insurance, phone coverage, utilities, and just about anything, you can think of. For big ticket purchases, check online comparison-shopping websites but be sure to factor in shipping costs versus in-store price.
Take advantage of discount programs such as the “Entertainment Book” and “Diners Club”.
Make sure you bring the book or card with you and remember to use it when shopping! Also, look for discounts when purchasing online, as some stores will offer a discount for signing up as a member, and you will often come out ahead, after all is said and done. Take advantage of any benefits you receive through your credit card, bank, and warehouse clubs. Often times, these companies will offer discounts on tickets, entertainment, auto loans, and much more.
Haggle whenever you can.
This does not work at big chain stores, but definitely use negotiating when buying a car, shopping at a swap meet, garage sale, or buying something from an individual. Inform the other person what you are willing to pay, as the worst that can happen if they do not like your offer is to say no. If they like your offer, you just saved money! Nine times out of ten, most people do accept a reasonable offer, so give haggling a try.
Car dealerships are the worst places for paying sticker price.
Never, ever, ever go into a car dealership and pay the full listed price. That price is always inflated and most of the time, many “extras” have been added to the car to bump up the cost. The next time you look at cars, look at the information. You may find out that there is $400 worth of car mats added into that price. If there is a bunch of extras added onto the car, tell the dealer you do not want extras and you will not pay for them. If the dealer refuses to budge, consider going online and purchasing your car from the factory. This way, you will not get many extras you do not need or want and the car usually ends up being a lot cheaper than buying from a dealer.
How many times have you bought something only for it to sit and collect dust in your garage? Why pay full price for something you can buy used that looks almost brand new for half or 1/3 the price? There are many great places to find deals, starting with your local newspaper or the Internet.