Spending “Bonus” Money
Each day of the series offers new tips, ideas and a challenge to start the year with a solid financial plan.
The next step is to become a smart shopper. Being a bargain shopper doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice style or name brands, though.
Take the same strategy that you use for coupon shopping and use it to find deals for all of your household needs. Here are a few tips:
- Do your research. Know what a good price is. Just because an item says sale, does not mean that it is a good price. Compare prices online and in brick and mortar stores. If you are purchasing a large item, track prices for awhile.
- Check out the clearance section. Many of the toys and clothes I buy are from the clearance section at the end of season. Create a gift stockpile and shop for Christmas year round.
- Second hand stores, craigslist and ebay are good sources for scoring a deal. Sometimes you can find brand new items for a fraction of the price.
- Take advantage of deal of the day sites and register for rewards programs.
- For produce and meat, consider buying in bulk and splitting between friends. Some stores will give a discount for bulk orders.
- Shop at discount grocery stores- just make sure you check the expiration dates.
Before you start shopping, make sure to evaluate what your needs and wants are. Remember it’s not a great deal unless you can afford to buy it! Evaluate your shopping strategy this week—allow time to do research and scope out the clearance sections.