sales http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/397/all en-US This Simple Negotiating Trick Puts Money in Your Pocket http://www.wisebread.com/this-simple-negotiating-trick-puts-money-in-your-pocket <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/this-simple-negotiating-trick-puts-money-in-your-pocket" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-513381684.jpg" alt="Man using negotiating trick to keep money in his pocket" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When you hear the word &quot;anchoring,&quot; what comes to mind? No doubt something that involves a ship dropping anchor, or perhaps fixing something to a wall or floor. But it's also a known technique used in sales and negotiations that helps people get what they want.</p> <p>The basic premise is not unlike that ship dropping its anchor, only instead of keeping the vessel in one place, it keeps your mind there. Whether it's a price, a salary, a sale, or a goal, this technique anchors your mind at a certain level. Then, all decision-making is based on that first piece of information you were given.</p> <p>Let's take a look at how it can be used to help you get what you want, save money, and even achieve a lot more around the house.</p> <h2>Negotiate a Bigger Raise or Starting Salary</h2> <p>Many people foolishly wait for the other person to make the first move when it comes to salary negotiations. The thinking here is that you don't want to show any of your cards too soon. Well, that's the complete opposite of what you should actually do. Using the anchoring technique, you can choose a salary that sets the starting point for the negotiations.</p> <p>If you're an employer, throw out a figure that is way too low. If you're an employee, raise the bar higher than you'd expect to hit. If you ask for a $180,000 salary, and the actual salary on offer is $120,000, you may actually get a little more than what they originally intended to pay. It's much harder to come down to $120k from $180k than it is from $130k. Similarly, giving an employee an offer of $70,000 for a job you'd be willing to pay $120,000 is just as effective.</p> <h2>Sell a Product or Service for More Money</h2> <p>You don't have to be in a big business to use this effectively. It can work online, at a market stall, or even a garage sale. Here, you will use anchoring as a comparison tool.</p> <p>For instance, let's say you're selling vinyl records, which are very popular these days. Set a few vinyls on the table and mark them way above the price you actually want. Then, further back, put a larger selection of vinyls set at a price slightly above what you would like, but much lower than the other, more expensive records. When the patron comes to peruse the stock, they'll initially get sticker shock. But then, they see a vast drop off. That initial price of $20 per vinyl just dropped to $8. These $8 vinyls seem like a bargain. However, if they had all been marked at $8, or some cheaper ones had been placed first, that initial anchor price would have set the standard. Try it out. You'll be amazed at the results.</p> <h2>Get More Done at Home or at Work</h2> <p>If you're having trouble getting all of your tasks done, either at home or at the office, you can use anchoring as a way to be more productive. In this case, it can be overwhelming to have 20 different things to do when you get home. You are anchored to a task list so large that you simply don't do any of them.</p> <p>Instead of 20, anchor yourself at a more manageable number. How about five? Divide those 20 tasks into five groups of four, and attack them that way. For example, instead of organizing the fridge, doing the dishes, cleaning the stove, and wiping the counters, your task instead becomes &quot;clean the kitchen.&quot; By grouping your activities, and creating a smaller list of tasks, you are anchoring yourself at a much more achievable goal. At the office, it's the same thing. Don't give yourself a massive list of tasks. Instead, divide and conquer.</p> <h2>Get a Better Price on a Car or a House</h2> <p>Car dealerships use anchoring all the time to get you to pay more for a vehicle. The sticker says $18,000, but in reality, they're willing to go as low as $13,000; they just never tell you that. It's time to turn the tables on them.</p> <p>When you go into the dealership, never tell them what you are prepared to pay for the car. Instead, set your price way lower. If you're ready to spend $20,000, tell them the most you can pay is $15,000. It's your hard stop. No more. The salesperson will now be anchored at that lower price, and will do whatever he or she can to get you to go past it by a few thousand dollars. This is good news for you, because in reality, you're going to spend a few thousand less than you actually wanted to pay. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/17-things-car-salesmen-dont-want-you-to-know?ref=seealso" target="_blank">17 Things Car Salesmen Don't Want You to Know</a>)</p> <p>The same goes for buying a house. Your initial offer should be low. Not low enough to price yourself out of a bidding war, but low enough to set the expectations of the seller. And as an aside, if you're selling the home, go high. When you list the home at $300,000 and sell it for $280,000, the buyer thinks they saved $20,000. However, you may well have wanted $270,000 for the house. You just made an extra $10,000 and the buyer is happy with the deal.</p> <h2>Use Your Knowledge of Anchoring to Beat the Sales Staff</h2> <p>Whether you're buying a car, a bag of apples, a new set of wireless headphones, or a few books, anchoring will often come into play. Trained sales staff know how to use anchoring to get what they want. But, if you're prepared, you can become &quot;anchorproof&quot; and pay less. Here are a few techniques at your disposal.</p> <p>First, you can simply ignore their anchor, especially if it's ridiculously high or low. Now, you don't want to say &quot;No way,&quot; as this halts the process. Instead, use language like &quot;I see, that's not quite what I had in mind, let's look at this at a different way and find something we can both be comfortable with.&quot;</p> <p>If you don't want to do that, try an anchor that negates theirs. For example, at a car dealership, when the salesperson gives you the old &quot;We can take $3,000 off this car,&quot; you can reply &quot;Wow, that still puts it $3,000 above my maximum price.&quot;</p> <p>You can also deflect an anchor by offering one from a different company. At that same dealership, you can say &quot;That's a great discount, but it's still $2,000 more than the same vehicle on offer at ABC Dealership.&quot; Of course, to do this you have to have done your research. Make sure you know exactly what the prices are at competitors, and be ready to back it up.</p> <p>So, armed with all of this, you should now be ready to use anchoring to make and earn more money, and save money every time you have to negotiate a price. Go get 'em.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-simple-negotiating-trick-puts-money-in-your-pocket">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-these-8-questions-to-get-a-better-price">Ask These 8 Questions to Get a Better Price</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-simple-plan-for-saving-up-a-2000-fun-fund">A Simple Plan for Saving Up a $2000 Fun Fund</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-retailers-where-you-can-negotiate-a-lower-price">11 Retailers Where You Can Negotiate a Lower Price</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-use-the-holiday-quiet-time-to-boost-your-career">How to Use the Holiday Quiet Time to Boost Your Career</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-convince-a-store-clerk-to-give-you-a-deal">6 Ways to Convince a Store Clerk to Give You a Deal</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks Career Building deals goals negotiating productivity raises salaries sales saving money selling strategy Wed, 15 Mar 2017 10:30:19 +0000 Paul Michael 1907105 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Tell if That Home Business Opportunity Is Really a Pyramid Scheme http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-tell-if-that-home-business-opportunity-is-really-a-pyramid-scheme <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-tell-if-that-home-business-opportunity-is-really-a-pyramid-scheme" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/women_chatting_tablet_506624473.jpg" alt="Women learning if a home business is a pyramid scheme" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Work from home! Get out of debt! Make a full-time income selling products you love! Such are the promises of companies and their agents looking to recruit people to be distributors or &quot;consultants&quot; for them.</p> <p>These types of &quot;job opportunities&quot; are called multilevel marketing (MLM), and most people who sign up never realize the benefits. If you're considering becoming a distributor for an MLM company, beware of the many warning signs that you could end up making little to no money, or worse, adding to your debt. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/multi-level-marketing-the-future-or-folly?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Multi-Level Marketing: The Future or Folly?</a>)</p> <p>Tupperware, Avon, and Mary Kay are some of the best known MLM firms, though they sometimes shun that term in an attempt to distance themselves from controversy-laden companies such as Herbalife and Amway. Both of those companies have been accused of making inflated earnings claims and of being pyramid schemes. The main difference between MLM companies and true pyramid schemes is that the primary purpose of a pyramid scheme is recruiting other distributors, rather than making direct sales. Pyramid schemes are illegal. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-terrible-work-from-home-jobs-you-should-avoid?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Terrible Work-From-Home &quot;Jobs&quot; You Should Avoid</a>)</p> <h2>What Are MLM Companies?</h2> <p>MLM companies, also called network marketing or direct selling companies, incorporate a business model in which representatives make money in two ways. The first is direct sales to consumers &mdash; often friends and acquaintances &mdash; through parties, social networks, and other web sales. The second income source is commissions from sales made by team members you recruit, also known as &quot;down line&quot; distributors.</p> <p>IBISWorld estimates the direct selling industry makes $41 billion in revenue and employs about 800,000 people. Intense competition from mass merchandisers has kept growth to a modest 0.6%.</p> <h2>MLM Promises Are Tempting</h2> <p>The sales pitches of MLM companies can be alluring, especially for stay-at-home moms, students, and the unemployed. Just imagine, they exclaim, a work day that includes jumping on social media, talking up strangers at the grocery store, or networking with friends. By selling products you love and believe in, you could earn extra money while enriching others' lives. And if you could convince a few friends to become distributors beneath you, you could have your own business &mdash; becoming the &quot;boss&quot; for the first time in your life. The promise is this: If you pour your heart into your business, get people to sign up beneath you, and never give up, you can (and will) become successful &mdash; no matter what.</p> <p>And when it comes to recruiting new distributors, some MLM companies pull out the big guns. It Works! &mdash; a company that sells body wraps, supplements, and personal care products &mdash; advertises huge cash payouts for new distributors who meet specific sales goals. How huge? The company frequently advertises bonuses of $15,000 or more for their top tier sellers, although it's hard to find concrete data on how many sales you need to make to earn these bonuses, or how they are paid out. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/17-part-time-jobs-to-do-while-your-kids-are-at-school?ref=seealso" target="_blank">17 Part-Time Jobs to Do While Your Kids Are at School</a>)</p> <h2>The Problem With Multi-Level Marketing Operations</h2> <p>While people can and do earn huge sums of money with MLM companies, there are myriad pitfalls to avoid. First, it can take a ton of sales to get anywhere near the mind-blowing income levels posted on corporate websites. And to reach the highest ranks of earners with any MLM, you may need to recruit dozens of people to work beneath you (with them recruiting people to work beneath them as well).</p> <p>Secondly, as we mentioned before, the line between MLM firms and pyramid schemes is fuzzy. In a pyramid scheme, the price of the products sold is inflated, making them hard to sell and causing the vast majority of participants to lose money. The <a href="https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0065-multilevel-marketing" target="_blank">Federal Trade Commission (FTC)</a> warns of the similarities, noting:</p> <blockquote><p>Not all multilevel marketing plans are legitimate. If the money you make is based on your sales to the public, it may be a legitimate multilevel marketing plan. If the money you make is based on the number of people you recruit and your sales to them, it's probably not. It could be a pyramid scheme. Pyramid schemes are illegal, and the vast majority of participants lose money.</p> </blockquote> <p>Even if the company is legitimate, most MLM companies require a &quot;buy in.&quot; You'll need to pay a certain amount of cash upfront to sell their products. While these &quot;starter kits&quot; normally cost a nominal amount (a few hundred dollars), they will certainly start your business in the red. If you're trying to make money to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-day-debt-reduction-plan-pay-it-off?ref=internal" target="_blank">pay off debt</a>, that's the last thing you need. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-signs-the-job-is-too-good-to-be-true?ref=seealso" target="_blank">11 Signs the Job Is Too Good to Be True</a>)</p> <h2>How Much Do MLM Distributors Really Make?</h2> <p>If you make money right out of the gate, then a nominal investment could be money well spent. Unfortunately, most distributors for MLM companies barely eek out a profit, let alone earn a full-time income from home. You can find proof directly on their websites.</p> <p>Let's go back to It Works!, the body wraps and personal care products company. According to its <a href="https://www.myitworks.com/Legal/Income/" target="_blank">2015 annual income disclosure statement</a>, 82% of its representatives had been with the company for an average of one month and were still on the first rung of the payment hierarchy &mdash; distributor status. Their monthly earnings ranged from a low of $1 to a high of $3,847, with a monthly average of $54.</p> <p>Income grows incrementally up the ranks, and tends to coincide with longer time spent growing the business. But income growth is slow, and the percentage of distributors who stick around more than a month drops dramatically. Only 7.8% of It Works! sales people are at the Executive level. They've been there an average of three months and earn an average of $231 a month. About 0.6% of reps are at Double Diamond level, making an average of $4,741 a month after 13 months of effort.</p> <p>Of course, some huge, mythical incomes do exist. According to the disclosure, the top tier income earner (. 02% of all distributors) &mdash; Ambassador Diamond &mdash; pulls in around $37,583 per month.</p> <p>Unfortunately, the average income for all It Works! Distributors was only $227 per month in 2015.</p> <p>And It Works! is far from the exception; their distributors actually make more than those working for many other MLM companies. Check out these annual income figures from other multilevel marketing disclosures for more proof:</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://issuu.com/thirtyoneleader/docs/income-disclosure-statement-2015" target="_blank">Thirty-One Gifts</a>: a company that sells organizational totes and monogrammed bags. In 2015, the average consultant (92.1% of distributors) earned $548 per year.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><a href="http://meltascent.com/download/scentsy-income-disclosure-statement/" target="_blank">Scentsy</a>: a company that focuses on candles and wax warmers. In 2014, the average lowest-level rep, called an Ecsential Consultant, earned $81 per year, while the average Certified Consultant (one level up from Ecsential) earned $463 per year.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><a href="https://www.advocare.com/opportunity/" target="_blank">Advocare</a>: a company that sells nutritional supplements and diet products. In 2015, the average annual compensation paid by Advocare to active distributors was $1,586.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><a href="http://www.beachbodycoach.com/uploads/fckeditor/mdbody/File/downloads/statement_of_independent_coach_earnings.pdf" target="_blank">BEACHBODY</a>: a company that sells fitness products and nutritional shakes. In 2015, the average BEACHBODY coach earned $502.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><a href="https://www.isagenix.com/~/media/compliance/earnings-statement/us-en-earnings-statement.pdf" target="_blank">Isagenix International</a>: a company that focuses on nutrition and diet products. In 2015, 87% of Isagenix business builders earned between $702 and $2,101, on average per year.</li> </ul> <p>As you can see, the average &quot;little guy&quot; is not making bank with any of these companies. In fact, your average distributor may be earning $100 per month or less. If they're a hobbyist who signed up for product discounts, then that might be fine by them. But when someone signs up to follow their dreams, the reality of not earning much can burn.</p> <p>MLM supporters argue that the reason so many people don't earn more is because they aren't really dedicated to building the business. Barriers to entry are very low, so many people sign up, then lose interest and give up in a way they wouldn't if they were building a regular business in which they'd had to invest more.</p> <p>But there are also real challenges to growing a viable business using the MLM model, even for committed salespeople. For example, many MLMs ask you to focus your sales efforts on family members and friends, which can be awkward and presents a limited pool of customers. Even if you expand your sales network, the products may be overpriced, making them difficult to sell.</p> <p>Lastly, it's not easy to grow your sales if your MLM is overly saturated with distributors already. And if you happen to recruit a distributor (the key to earning commissions), they then often become your competition.</p> <h2>Tips for Vetting an MLM Company</h2> <p>Just like anything else, it pays to do some research before you sign up for a multilevel marketing company. As the FTC notes, it's smart to not only consider the products, but to learn more about the company itself.</p> <p>Questions to ask should include:</p> <ul> <li>How long has the company been in business?</li> <li>What is its standing with the BBB?</li> <li>Has the company been sued for deceptive business practices?</li> <li>What are the company's annual sales?</li> <li>What percentage of average sales are made to distributors, as opposed to retail consumers?</li> </ul> <p>Beyond those considerations, the FTC suggests making sure you understand compensation structure, terms and conditions, and potential business expenses. Also, get all the company's details, including their refund policy, in writing.</p> <p>The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission also offers an array of tips for people vetting a MLM and trying to avoid a pyramid scheme. According to the SEC, you should:</p> <ul> <li>Watch out for MLMs that don't appear to offer a product or service. If you can't figure out what a MLM sells, run.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Be leery of MLMs that promise huge returns in a short amount of time. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Be skeptical of companies that offer compensation for little work. Terms like &quot;easy money&quot; and &quot;passive income&quot; should be a red flag.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Look for proof of retail sales. Ask to see documents that show how the MLM generated revenue from the selling of its products to people outside the program.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Think long and hard before you &quot;buy in.&quot; Question the value of any opportunity that makes you purchase a product to get started.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Watch out for complex commission structures. If it's hard to understand how you'll get paid or you can't figure out how commissions work, beware.</li> </ul> <p>Lastly, the FTC and SEC both suggest avoiding MLMs that place a heavy emphasis on recruiting members to work beneath you. The hallmark of a pyramid scheme is when you make more money recruiting than you do for product sales.</p> <p>Check out these <a href="https://www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/business-center/guidance/multilevel-marketing" target="_blank">FTC</a> and <a href="https://www.sec.gov/enforce/investor-alerts-bulletins/investoralertsia_pyramidhtm.html" target="_blank">SEC</a> pages for further details on how to vet a multilevel marketing company. While these companies do offer a path to earning extra income, the reality is that most of that income goes to the very top few earners, not to the average distributor like yourself. And if you don't wind up earning much, the costs of buying a &quot;starter kit&quot; and hosting parties could easily leave you in the red.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/holly-johnson">Holly Johnson</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-tell-if-that-home-business-opportunity-is-really-a-pyramid-scheme">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-protect-yourself-from-an-investment-scam">How to Protect Yourself From an Investment Scam</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/netspend-the-story-of-the-visa-debit-card-we-did-not-apply-for">netSpend: The Story of the Visa Debit Card We Did Not Apply For</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-great-jobs-for-people-who-hate-the-9-5">10 Great Jobs for People Who Hate the 9-5</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-keep-your-private-info-private">10 Ways to Keep Your Private Info Private</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-protect-yourself-from-predatory-lending">How to Protect Yourself From Predatory Lending</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career and Income Consumer Affairs businesses distributors MLM multilevel marketing pyramid schemes sales scams self employment work from home Fri, 03 Mar 2017 10:30:39 +0000 Holly Johnson 1902525 at http://www.wisebread.com 11 Easy Ways to Earn More on eBay http://www.wisebread.com/11-easy-ways-to-earn-more-on-ebay <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/11-easy-ways-to-earn-more-on-ebay" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-155431059.jpg" alt="make more money selling on ebay" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Selling unwanted items on eBay is a great way to clear away clutter and make some extra money on the side. Use these tips, and you'll start making even more.</p> <h2>1. Take Clear Pictures</h2> <p>Clear, sharp, and well-lit pictures are important. This is the first thing buyers will notice when looking at whatever it is you're selling. While it's a good idea to include the manufacturer's photo of the item, you'll also want to include some of your own so that bidders will know exactly what they're purchasing. They will also be looking at the background in the photos, so make sure to take them in a clean, well-lighted space.</p> <h2>2. Write a Good Description</h2> <p>Write an accurate, thorough description. Make sure to specify the brand, type, size, color, material, and other important keywords for the item you're selling. You will also want to clearly specify the condition of the item. In the description field, highlight the benefits of the product and what makes it different from another seller's listing. Check for misspellings in your description, which can throw off your keywords and make your item more difficult to find.</p> <h2>3. Determine Your Pricing</h2> <p>To set a price, first do some market research to see what identical items in similar condition are selling for, and how it compares to the original asking price. Be sure to also factor in the cost of shipping, packing supplies, and <a href="http://www.fees.ebay.com/feeweb/feecalculator" target="_blank">calculate any fees</a>.</p> <h2>4. Timing Is Everything</h2> <p>You can set the time that your listing will begin and expire on eBay. It's important to take into account that you may have bidders on both the East and West Coast, so you want to set your listing to end at a time that is convenient for both timezones.</p> <p>According to eBay, buyers are most active between 5 p.m. PST and 10 p.m. PST. In most cases, it's wise to end your listing between 6 p.m. PST and 9 p.m. PST. This allows bidders to place their final bid once they are home from work, but before they go to sleep, regardless of which coast they are on. Sunday is generally the best day of the week to end your sale. Weekends see the most traffic on eBay, and Sunday evening is the most active.</p> <h2>5. Set Unsuccessful Listings to Resell</h2> <p>eBay will allow you to relist items that didn't sell up to three times at no extra charge. If you set each listing to seven days and choose the option to resell unsuccessful listings, your item will be up for a total of 21 days at no fee.</p> <h2>6. Bundle Items Together</h2> <p>Whenever possible, bundle items together. This makes it seem like buyers are getting a better deal, and can help make your listing stand out. Best of all, it can save you time and money on shipping. This is especially effective around the holidays when shoppers are looking for gifts.</p> <h2>7. Have Positive Feedback</h2> <p>Bidders will look at your feedback, so it's important that you have some positive reviews. If you haven't sold anything or don't have any reviews yet, consider selling some smaller items first so that you can build up some positive feedback. This will allow buyers to be more confident in you when considering a high priced item.</p> <h2>8. Offer Free Shipping</h2> <p><a href="http://pages.ebay.com/seller-center/shipping/best-practices.html" target="_blank">According to eBay</a>, most buyers are looking for items that offer free shipping. It allows buyers to see the total price easily rather than having to factor in an additional cost. If you don't want to offer free shipping, then offer cheaper shipping.</p> <p>Make sure to ship through your eBay dashboard. This will make it more convenient for you, and results in <a href="http://pages.ebay.com/seller-center/shipping/shipping-basics.html#labels" target="_blank">shipping discounts</a> of up to 24% on Priority Mail and up to 37% on FedEx shipments. It also allows the buyer to automatically track the shipment and can charge your PayPal account for the shipping fees.</p> <h2>9. Ship Items Quickly</h2> <p>By shipping your items quickly, you can get more positive feedback, which is important to future sales. International shipping can be expensive and time-consuming, so you may want to turn international shipping options off when selling your item.</p> <h2>10. Answer Buyers' Questions<strong> </strong></h2> <p>If a potential buyer asks a question about your product, it's important that you respond quickly and accurately. If you take your time answering, the buyer may have moved on to another seller and you'll lose out on a sale.</p> <h2>11. Offer Good Customer Service</h2> <p>If you are frequently selling items, issues are certain to happen from time to time. As the seller, you have the responsibility to make an effort to provide customer satisfaction. This may mean accepting a return even when you feel you were accurate in your description, or providing a partial refund to satisfy a complaint. Do your best to remain respectful and calm, even if you feel the buyer is being unreasonable.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-easy-ways-to-earn-more-on-ebay">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/effective-ebay-listing-0">Effective eBay Listing</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-should-always-buy-and-sell-on-ebay">10 Things You Should Always Buy and Sell on eBay</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/clear-out-that-clutter-15-places-to-sell-your-stuff">Clear Out That Clutter: 15 Places to Sell Your Stuff</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-16-favorite-ways-to-get-rid-of-clutter">My 16 Favorite Ways to Get Rid of Clutter</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-totally-free-things-you-can-sell-on-ebay">8 Totally Free Things You Can Sell on eBay</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income bidders clutter customer service eBay making money online auctions sales selling shipping Fri, 27 Jan 2017 10:30:32 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1881631 at http://www.wisebread.com 11 Good Money Habits That Will Keep You Out of Debt http://www.wisebread.com/11-good-money-habits-that-will-keep-you-out-of-debt <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/11-good-money-habits-that-will-keep-you-out-of-debt" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_glasses_smile_518885222.jpg" alt="Woman with good money habits staying out of debt" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Staying on the straight and narrow, especially when it comes to your finances, can feel like a struggle. Recreational activities, impulse buys, monthly bills, and unexpected expenses lurk around every corner, and if you're not careful, you can slide into debt without really trying.</p> <p>If you practice good money habits as a general life philosophy, however, you're giving yourself the best chance of staying in the black consistently &mdash; and perhaps even making those coveted savings gains. Here's how.</p> <h2>1. Create a Budget Based on Life Goals &mdash; Not Numbers</h2> <p>Every article you read about how to improve your personal finances includes creating and maintaining a budget. That's because actively keeping track of what's coming and going helps you manage your money more responsibly than simply throwing caution (and cash) to the wind. But your budget is only serving a single purpose when it's strictly rooted in numbers opposed to relating to your personal activity and short- and long-term goals &mdash; like an upcoming vacation or contributions to your retirement fund, for instance.</p> <p>As such, instead of living your life around your budget, you'll find much more satisfaction in building your budget around your life. By planning ahead for expenses, even frivolous things, you can identify the areas where your budget is lacking and (hopefully) close those holes by either amending your plans to accommodate your cash flow or increasing your income to afford the things that make you happy.</p> <p>I recommend the latter, of course &mdash; because you only live once.</p> <h2>2. Charge Only What You Can Afford to Pay Off Every Month</h2> <p>Let's get something straight here: Credit is not as dastardly an institution as you've been led to believe. Yes, there are credit cards with astronomical APRs. And, yes, there are credit cards with ridiculous late fees. But at the end of the day, you're responsible for reading the fine print (you know it's there!), and nobody is forcing your hand in accepting an offer.</p> <p>Still, credit is attractive because it allows us the freedom to have more than we can afford. But whose problem is that when you can't pay the bill? All yours. Avoid this downward spiral by making your credit card payments top priority each cycle.</p> <p>&quot;Credit cards are not evil, but they can make a mess of your finances if used unwisely,&quot; says savings expert Kendal Perez. &quot;Ultimately, you should only charge what you can afford to pay off every month. Using your credit card to pay bills is a smart strategy since you have to pay these expenses anyway, and using credit means accruing points, rewards, or travel miles to offset future expenses.&quot;</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/fastest-way-to-pay-off-10000-in-credit-card-debt?ref=seealso2" target="_blank">12 Habits of Responsible Credit Card Users</a></p> <h2>3. Look for Savings on Everything You Buy</h2> <p>I personally save many thousands of dollars every year by being a smart shopper, because there are few things I buy for which I don't have a coupon or discount. From dining out to going to the movies to the clothes I wear to the gas I put in my vehicle &mdash; everything comes with savings.</p> <p>It's not hard to get into this habit, either. I save by using loyalty cards, clipping coupons, redeeming cash back deals, signing up for promotional emails, waiting for items I want to go on sale, shopping clearance sections, and buying secondhand, among a myriad of other strategies. It's like a game for me, and I hardly ever spend money on something for which there are no savings; I look for a cheaper alternative instead. It's a major reason why I always have enough money in the bank to cover my bills, plus add to savings while still doing the things I like to do every month.</p> <h2>4. Buy Groceries Based on What's on Sale and in Season</h2> <p>Groceries are one of the biggest spending categories for Americans, next to mortgages and insurance. Instead of buying what you're craving, buy groceries based on what's in season and what's on sale. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-5-credit-cards-for-groceries?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 5 Best Credit Cards for Groceries</a>)</p> <p>&quot;This will require some meal planning, but you can craft similar meals based on what's on sale each week,&quot; explains Perez. &quot;Use a tool like Flipp.com to easily compare grocery sales and deals between stores in your area, and consider looking for grocery coupons for items on your list through CouponSherpa.com.&quot;</p> <p>Another trick I use to cut my grocery bill is to shop the clearance section. Most supermarkets have these sections with drastically reduced prices on damaged or about-to-expire food that's still perfectly good if you get to it in time. Ask your grocer where these items are located in your store.</p> <h2>5. Organize Your Bill Payments to Avoid Lateness</h2> <p>As soon as a bill arrives, I grab my checkbook (yep, I'm old school), write out the check, and prepare the envelope. On the back of the envelope I write the dollar amount that's inside as an at-a-glance reminder, and I organize the bill on my desk according to when it's due. Then I stagger the mailings &mdash; sending each payment out about five days before it's due &mdash; to ensure that I can reconcile all the bills with my bank account.</p> <p>Consumer finance expert Kevin Gallegos offers more tips on how to avoid late payments.</p> <p>&quot;Open all mail &mdash; including bills &mdash; upon receipt, deposit all checks and cash immediately, and set up a system for payment that works for you and that you'll use consistently,&quot; he says. &quot;This might be automatic online payments, a spreadsheet, a reminder on your cell phone, or a list on the refrigerator.&quot;</p> <h2>6. Map Out Your Long-Term Financial Goals</h2> <p>The only way you'll get ahead in your finances is if you know where you're going. Take a look at what's coming up in terms of required expenses and also think about some of the things you'd like to do with your money. Do you want to go back to school, on vacation, or purchase a new car or home? Set these milestones as goals and calculate what it'll take financially to reach them, then start saving in increments along an established timeline.</p> <h2>7. Review Your Finances on a Regular Basis</h2> <p>Reviewing your finances on a &quot;regular basis&quot; is a relative term, but I typically suggest once a month. There's value in doing it more often, however &mdash; like once to twice a week &mdash; according to personal finance expert Larry Jacobson.</p> <p>&quot;You need to set regular intervals to stay on the right path,&quot; he says. &quot;That way, you can course correct, if necessary, before it's too late.&quot;</p> <p>When reviewing your finances, be sure to cover all your bases. Browse your credit score for any errors, review bank and credit card statements for inconsistencies, and make sure all checks have posted. It's also a good idea to call your service providers once a year to inquire about better deals, like cheaper mobile phone or cable plans.</p> <h2>8. Treat Savings Like One of Your Monthly Bills</h2> <p>Instead of regarding contributions to your savings as a chore, start considering it a requirement, says Gallegos. Treat your savings deposits like a monthly bill; find that extra money somewhere in your budget (a reasonable amount that you can handle) and tuck it away as if you'll be penalized if you don't. You may have to make a sacrifice somewhere else, like in your &quot;fun&quot; fund, but, well, that's life.</p> <h2>9. Learn to Live Below Your Means</h2> <p>If you're one of those people who responds well to logic, here's a pro tip on staying debt free: Live below your means.</p> <p>&quot;Know exactly what you have to spend each month &mdash; and spend less,&quot; says Gallegos. &quot;Living beneath your means goes further than living within your means. It means taking responsibility and choosing where your money goes instead of being influenced by whims, advertising, habits, or peer pressure.&quot;</p> <p>If this is a tactic you'd like to try, you'll need to re-evaluate your budget entirely. Find items you can reduce or eliminate altogether to free up funds, like subscriptions and memberships that you aren't using to their full potential, cutting back on dining out, and reducing your monthly fuel bill by carpooling with a coworker or using public transportation more often.</p> <h2>10. Switch to a Cash-Only System</h2> <p>Here's another piece of practical advice that leads your wallet away from debt: Only pay for things in cash.</p> <p>&quot;You can't go into debt if you don't borrow,&quot; says Mike Sullivan, a personal finance consultant with Take Charge America, a nonprofit credit counseling and debt management agency.</p> <p>I recognize, of course, that that's easier said than done, so Sullivan offers a couple more strategies for holding yourself cash-accountable.</p> <p>&quot;Save with direct deposit at out of town banks,&quot; he says. &quot;You don't want your savings available on a whim; Internet banks are a good choice. And don't sign up for overdraft protection. That's agreeing in advance to spending more than you have and paying for the privilege.&quot;</p> <h2>11. Make More Money</h2> <p>One of my own personal money manifestos is to always have at least two sources of income. I'm self-employed, and I consider my media business my main source of income, but I supplement that with several side gigs, like renting out rooms in my homes on Airbnb, watching other people's pets through DogVacay, and driving for Lyft and Uber. That's three extra sources of income right there, but I'm always eager to find more ways to make money.</p> <p>I feel personally satisfied when all my bills are paid on time, money is consistently going to my savings account, and I'm cash-positive enough to enjoy life the way I want to. If you can't seem to get ahead, use your resources and carve out time to make more money. You'll achieve your financial goals and alleviate the burden of debt faster, and that can only lead to good things.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-good-money-habits-that-will-keep-you-out-of-debt">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/easy-budgeting-for-first-time-singles">Easy Budgeting for First Time Singles</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/47-simple-ways-to-waste-money">47 Simple Ways To Waste Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-100s-next-month-with-these-10-grocery-shopping-tips">Save $100s Next Month With These 10 Grocery Shopping Tips</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-signs-youre-not-frugal-youre-cheap">6 Signs You&#039;re Not Frugal — You&#039;re Cheap!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-bodily-fluids-you-can-exchange-for-cash">5 Bodily Fluids You Can Exchange for Cash</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Budgeting bills cash extra income groceries live below your means money goals payments sales side jobs Tue, 24 Jan 2017 10:00:11 +0000 Mikey Rox 1870058 at http://www.wisebread.com Flashback Friday: 160 Gift Ideas for Everyone You Know http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-160-gift-ideas-for-everyone-you-know <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/flashback-friday-160-gift-ideas-for-everyone-you-know" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_christmas_gifts_486887902.jpg" alt="Woman finding gift ideas for everyone she knows" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's now officially Go Time for Christmas shoppers. You've got your list of people to buy gifts for, and you're still trying to figure out what to get, and meanwhile, the days are slipping away fast. Should you spend hours digging through their social media profiles to find some gift inspiration? Or is it just easier to throw your hands up and buy them all the same scented candle? The good news is that you don't have to do either, because we've found the perfect gift for just about everyone.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/woman_holding_gift_000052221060.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/47-unique-gift-ideas-for-women?ref=fbf">47 Unique Gift Ideas for Women</a> &mdash; Need a gift for the woman in your life? She's probably not that hard to shop for. Any of these 47 items will put a big smile on her face.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-great-frugal-gifts-for-booklovers?ref=fbf">11 Great Frugal Gifts for Booklovers</a> &mdash; It's no secret that bookworms love books. But they also love book-related gifts! The best part is that most of them don't cost much money, so pick any of these and your budget will remain intact.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/christmas-treats-gift-509805851-small.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/16-easy-delicious-and-homemade-holiday-gifts?ref=fbf">16 Easy, Delicious and Homemade Holiday Gifts</a> &mdash; Homemade gifts are personal, frugal, and often extremely delicious! If you're looking to save some Christmas coinage, give these a go for your favorite sweet tooth.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/21-experiences-that-make-great-gifts?ref=fbf">21 Experiences That Make Great Gifts</a> &mdash; You know what lasts longer than a thing? A happy memory. So if you have someone who needs their day brightened (and who doesn't?) give them a lasting memory through a fun event or amazing experience.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/man_holding_gift_000054369890.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/50-unique-gift-ideas-for-men?ref=fbf">50+ Unique Gift Ideas for Men</a> &mdash; What do you get for the guy who has everything? And what do you get for the guy who only has some things? Men are notoriously hard to shop for, but this list will take away the guesswork so you can get your favorite fellas things they'll adore.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-genius-gifts-for-office-secret-santa?ref=fbf">15 Genius Gifts for Office Secret Santa</a> &mdash; Don't forget about your coworkers this holiday season! Many offices do a Secret Santa gift exchange, and when you don't know your coworkers very well, it feels impossible to shop for them. But even if you only know one detail about them, these gift ideas will help you narrow down your gift search.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chrissa-hardy">Chrissa Hardy</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-160-gift-ideas-for-everyone-you-know">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-30-brilliant-ways-to-survive-black-friday-madness">Flashback Friday: 30 Brilliant Ways to Survive Black Friday Madness</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-44-sneaky-shopping-traps-to-avoid">Flashback Friday: 44 Sneaky Shopping Traps to Avoid</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-47-best-back-to-school-shopping-hacks-ever">Flashback Friday: 47 Best Back-to-School Shopping Hacks Ever</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-49-smartest-amazon-hacks-that-will-save-you-big">Flashback Friday: 49 Smartest Amazon Hacks That Will Save You Big</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-smart-reasons-to-last-minute-holiday-shop">9 Smart Reasons to Last-Minute Holiday Shop</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Shopping Christmas christmas shopping fbf flashback friday frugal living gift guides gift ideas holiday shopping sales shopping shopping hacks Fri, 09 Dec 2016 11:00:09 +0000 Chrissa Hardy 1850498 at http://www.wisebread.com Flashback Friday: 30 Brilliant Ways to Survive Black Friday Madness http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-30-brilliant-ways-to-survive-black-friday-madness <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/flashback-friday-30-brilliant-ways-to-survive-black-friday-madness" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couple_holiday_shopping_590041514.jpg" alt="Couple finding ways to survive the Black Friday madness" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Black Friday shopping isn't always fun. In fact, most of the time, it's the opposite of fun. But even though there are crowds everywhere, the weather is most likely extremely cold, and you're still working off the food coma from yesterday, the Black Friday hustle is worth it for the amazing deals you can score. Here are 30 brilliant ways to survive the madness of Black Friday.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/women_holiday_shopping_000052946922.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-black-friday-craziness-is-worth-it?ref=fbf">5 Reasons Black Friday Craziness Is Worth It</a> &mdash; It's not all bad. You can finish up your gift shopping in one day, there's the thrill of the chase, and getting big discounts on all your purchases is so much fun. Even though you're cranky and tired, there are several upsides to this annual shopping celebration.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-people-go-crazy-on-black-friday?ref=fbf">Why People Go Crazy on Black Friday</a> &mdash; In order to fully assess what you're dealing with on Black Friday, it's important to know why so many people get sucked into it. Hint: it's all based in strategy and psychology. Incredibly fascinating!</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/woman_shopping_tablet_000071622233.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-score-a-black-friday-deal-without-leaving-home?ref=fbf">6 Ways to Score a Black Friday Deal Without Leaving Home</a> &mdash; The best way to shop Black Friday deals is to do it without wearing pants. And the only way to do that (without getting arrested) is to do all your Black Friday shopping at home. Just pull up your computer and fill up that cart!</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/women_shopping_bags_78628943.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-frugal-skills-you-need-to-survive-black-friday?ref=fbf">8 Frugal Skills You Need to Survive Black Friday</a> &mdash; The real winners of Black Friday? The frugal folks. Many frugal living skills you use in your everyday life and financial planning goals can be applied to Black Friday as well. And these are skills you need just to get through Black Friday without destroying your budget.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-spend-black-friday-at-home?ref=fbf">6 Ways to Spend Black Friday at Home</a> &mdash; Believe it or not, people will head out on Black Friday even if they aren't interested in shopping. It's a holiday weekend, so people will head out to eat, to the movies, and everywhere else. So if you're looking to do the opposite of that and relax at home, here are some low-key ways to celebrate sans crowds.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chrissa-hardy">Chrissa Hardy</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-30-brilliant-ways-to-survive-black-friday-madness">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-160-gift-ideas-for-everyone-you-know">Flashback Friday: 160 Gift Ideas for Everyone You Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-44-sneaky-shopping-traps-to-avoid">Flashback Friday: 44 Sneaky Shopping Traps to Avoid</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-47-best-back-to-school-shopping-hacks-ever">Flashback Friday: 47 Best Back-to-School Shopping Hacks Ever</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-49-smartest-amazon-hacks-that-will-save-you-big">Flashback Friday: 49 Smartest Amazon Hacks That Will Save You Big</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-85-best-ways-to-save-on-halloween-this-year">Flashback Friday: 85 Best Ways to Save on Halloween This Year</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Shopping black friday black friday tips fbf flashback friday frugal living holiday shopping sales shopping shopping hacks Fri, 25 Nov 2016 12:00:16 +0000 Chrissa Hardy 1839704 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Things Not to Buy on Black Friday http://www.wisebread.com/7-things-not-to-buy-on-black-friday <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-things-not-to-buy-on-black-friday" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_VR_headset_522315038.jpg" alt="Woman learning what not to buy on Black Friday" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If I had to choose one word to describe Black Friday, it would be pande-frickin'-monium. Consumers go berserk for doorbusters, big deals, and deep discounts, but all may not be as it seems. Take a look at these typical Black Friday &quot;best buys&quot; that are anything but to help stretch your budget and keep your sanity in check.</p> <h2>1. Virtual Reality Headsets</h2> <p>Primitive virtual reality headsets have been around for a few years now, but they're just starting to enter mainstream technology now that major tech players, like Sony, are designing their own devices. The main problem here, however, is that the tech still isn't where it needs to be to justify the high cost of these coveted Christmas-list items.</p> <p>&quot;Though it's tempting to get your hands on a virtual reality headset, we recommend sitting it out for one more year,&quot; suggests BuyVia, a website and mobile app that combines in-store and online shopping across smartphones, tablets, and laptops. &quot;In order for the headset to be worthwhile, you need a high-end fast PC, which can be pricey without giving you great results. For instance, The Core i5 processor will run you at least $800, plus the Nvidia GTX 970 video card. The PlayStation VR costs $400 but is still pretty slow, and has limited software selection and tracking problems.&quot;</p> <p>Of course, given VR's popularity right now, you do run the risk of crushing someone's holiday hopes, like, big time, if you opt out on this item &mdash; but, eh, whatever. There's always next year.</p> <h2>2. Winter Apparel</h2> <p>It's not that you won't find great deals on winter apparel this time of year, but Black Friday may not be the best day to go on a shopping spree for the long johns and wool socks that your nephews are totally dreading. (Seriously &mdash; eeeevery year, lady?)</p> <p>&quot;While you're sure to see deals on select clothing items during Black Friday, it's better to hold off until Cyber Monday when sitewide savings of 60% plus free shipping give you more options,&quot; says savings expert Kendal Perez of <a href="http://www.couponsherpa.com">Coupon Sherpa</a>. &quot;Black Friday clothing deals are often limited to one brand or style &mdash; a crew-neck cashmere sweater, for example. What's more, discounts on winter clothing and boots are deeper in January, when these garments go on clearance to make room for spring styles, which typically debut on showroom floors in February.&quot;</p> <h2>3. Health and Beauty Items</h2> <p>Like clothing, wait until Cyber Monday and deeper-in-December sales. Prices on individual items and sets, as well as discounts for brands and subcategories, will be much better.</p> <p>&quot;You may find a few spectacular doorbuster-like deals on makeup, polish, and fragrances, but waiting until the traditional storewide discounts we see on Cyber Monday will bring you a bigger selection of items to choose from,&quot; <a href="https://www.fatwallet.com/">FatWallet.com</a>'s Brent Shelton says.</p> <p>Or you can do what I do: Wait until after the holidays to pick up grooming sets, from brands like Axe and Old Spice, at slashed prices and stash them away until next year. Just make sure the products won't expire within a year or two. Which is important &mdash; unless you like the idea of giving your brother a holiday rash.</p> <h2>4. Tools</h2> <p>You may be getting fooled on tools on Black Friday, according to Mike Catania, founder of thesaving community <a href="http://www.promotioncode.org">PromotionCode.org</a>.</p> <p>&quot;While there are plenty of Black Friday 'sales' for tools, the reality is that they're marked up more for the holidays than any other time of the year,&quot; he says. The offers look good on paper &mdash; up to 30% off &mdash; but the original price is 40% higher than it was at the end of summer. This is particularly true for tools in the quality range beneath 'pro-sumer.'&quot;</p> <p>This doesn't mean that hubby can't get the new table saw that he'll use once before he starts using it as a storage surface. Just do your research and compare prices before purchasing.</p> <h2>5. 1080p HDTVs</h2> <p>Flat-screen TVs have long been a staple of Black Friday doorbusters &mdash; many shoppers have the trample marks to prove it. But this year, 1080p versions are hitting the skids for higher-end (but still affordable) 4K HDTVs.</p> <p>&quot;4K is definitely the future of TV, and the price has dropped significantly over the last year; a 50-inch 4K HDTV is about $400,&quot; writes BuyVia in a recent blog post <a href="https://www.buyvia.com/blog/not-buy-black-friday-2016/">about Black Friday</a>. &quot;4Ks are optimized for Blu-ray, Netflix, Amazon, DirectTV, and YouTube, and you can add Smart TV functionality with an inexpensive $40 Roku box. Plus, if you want to spend a little more money, you can find a 4K TV with HDR imaging for incredible image quality.&quot;</p> <p>The one and only issue I have with this trend &mdash; and full disclosure, I own 4K TVs myself &mdash; is that cable technology hasn't caught up with TV tech. It may be another year or two until you'll get the full experience of 4K, but you can at least take advantage of the Internet-connected &quot;smart&quot; part of the sets in the meantime.</p> <h2>6. Home Furnishings</h2> <p>The general consensus here is that you should avoid buying new furniture this time of year, not just specifically on Black Friday. Perez explains why.</p> <p>&quot;Black Friday is all about doorbuster deals on TVs, gaming consoles, tablets, and other electronics,&quot; she says. &quot;Rarely do we see an epic deal on love seats and recliners, and Black Friday deals for national chains like Crate &amp; Barrel, West Elm, Pottery Barn, and the like are minimal, often limited 15% to 20% off select items and deals on holiday accessories which don't compete with post-holiday sales. Furniture deals are better in January and July/August, when new styles debut and clearance prices offer better savings compared to Black Friday discounts.&quot;</p> <h2>7. Gift Cards</h2> <p>Boy, do I love a good gift card &mdash; mostly so I can exchange all the long johns and wool socks my aunt gave me yet again and get what I want. Deal-wise, though, you're better off waiting until December to stock up on these precious pieces of plastic, says Perez.</p> <p>&quot;Gift cards are a better buy in December when restaurants and select retailers offer bonus cards with gift card purchases. In the past, we've seen free $5 to $25 bonus gift cards with purchase of restaurant gift cards $25 to $50 from Chili's, Benihana, Olive Garden, and more. Retailers like LL Bean, DSW, The Children's Place, and Toys 'R Us also offered free gift cards ranging from $5 to $25 last December with select purchases.&quot;</p> <h2>Two More Holiday-Shopping Pro Tips</h2> <p>Speaking of doorbusters, here are a couple of freebies.</p> <h3>1. Be Patient, Then Pounce</h3> <p>As the holiday season progresses, so does the competition for your dollar.</p> <p>&quot;There is no need to rush into buying as a majority of retailers run comparable sales throughout the holiday season,&quot; says e-commerce business owner Bob Ellis. &quot;It's a competitive time for retailers and they will do what they will to win your business.&quot;</p> <p>Also, if you don't see the deal you are want, ask for it. More often than not retailers will work with you and at the very least price match. Be patient, ask, and you shall receive &mdash; maybe.</p> <h3>2. Shop Post-Holiday if You Can</h3> <p>It's an unlikely scenario that anyone in your family wants to celebrate Christmas after Christmas, but if you're all a bunch of frugal wizards, shopping post-holiday will save you <em>lots </em>of money.</p> <p>&quot;Anything 'gifts' is going to be heavily discounted after Christmas,&quot; says Kristin Cook, managing editor of <a href="http://www.bensbargains.com">Ben's Bargains</a>. &quot;This includes fragrance and beauty sets, especially with 'winter' scents or holiday packaging; hats/mittens/gloves sets; sweaters; wallets; jewelry; and definitely toys.&quot;</p> <p>If this isn't an option for you, at least reserve these savings for yourself. I used to practice the &quot;buy one gift for them, buy one gift for myself&quot; shopping method during the holidays, but now I try to curb the impulse buys by remembering that my money will go much farther if I shop for myself after the holidays with my gift cards, ie. other people's money. Feels much better that way.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-things-not-to-buy-on-black-friday">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-frugal-skills-you-need-to-survive-black-friday">8 Frugal Skills You Need to Survive Black Friday</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-best-discount-shopping-days-of-the-year">7 Best Discount Shopping Days of the Year</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-30-brilliant-ways-to-survive-black-friday-madness">Flashback Friday: 30 Brilliant Ways to Survive Black Friday Madness</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-surprising-ways-to-maximize-your-savings-at-home-depot">6 Surprising Ways to Maximize Your Savings at Home Depot</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-black-friday-craziness-is-worth-it">5 Reasons Black Friday Craziness Is Worth It</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping black friday doorbusters furniture gift cards hdtvs makeup sales tools virtual reality winter clothes Wed, 23 Nov 2016 10:00:08 +0000 Mikey Rox 1838643 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Frugal Skills You Need to Survive Black Friday http://www.wisebread.com/8-frugal-skills-you-need-to-survive-black-friday <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-frugal-skills-you-need-to-survive-black-friday" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/women_shopping_bags_78628943.jpg" alt="Women learning frugal living skills to survive Black Friday" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Black Friday: It's a day some of us look forward to, and others dread. It's the one day of the year when stores seemingly lose all sense of reality and offer products at prices that are insanely low.</p> <p>Of course, anyone who really knows what's going on behind the scenes is well aware that the stores have not gone mad. Most are employing clever tactics, like loss leaders and limited doorbusters, to lure you in and get you spending. But if you arm yourself with the following frugal skills, you'll come out on top.</p> <h2>1. Iron-Clad Willpower</h2> <p>Temptation is everywhere on Black Friday. Even if you think you know every deal that's coming, you will be surprised by bargains you never dreamed of. This is the time to remain frugal, and hold firm to what you came there to get. A good way to think of it is this: If you didn't want it, no matter <em>how</em> cheap it was, it wasn't a bargain.</p> <p>Grabbing handfuls of DVDs and Blu-Rays priced at $1.99 each may feel like you're ripping the place off, but if you're never going to watch them, what's the point? This goes for everything you see that day. Hold firm. What do you need, and what do you want? You should only be buying what you need on Black Friday, because otherwise, you can get swept away by the hysteria and spend more than you planned.</p> <h2>2. A Healthy Dose of Skepticism</h2> <p>Do not, for one second, think that the deals being presented on Black Friday are the most incredible money-saving bargains around. Sure, the doorbusters will be great opportunities to save, but they are always available in very limited quantities (in some cases, only a handful per store). And unless you're planning to spend hours, or even days, waiting in line, you aren't going to get them.</p> <p>Many of the other deals you'll see on Black Friday have often been available on that price, <a href="http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB10000872396390443615804578042700772445448">or even lower,</a> on other days of the year. And as always, take that RRP (recommended retail price) with a huge grain of salt. This is the price you see as &quot;before,&quot; and the sale price as &quot;after&quot; &mdash; but chances are, the store never priced the item at that RRP.</p> <h2>3. The Patience of a Saint</h2> <p>Things are going to get tough, both mentally and physically, on Black Friday. There will be pushing and shoving, shouting and screaming, and sadly, injuries. The chaos can easily take hold of you, and before you know it you're right in there, grabbing at bargains, pushing people out of the way, and getting caught up in a world of trouble.</p> <p>Take a step back. Breathe. Be patient. Remember, this is all just stuff. It may be stuff you'd like to have, or give as a gift, but it is not worth your health or sanity. What's more, by giving into your more animalistic emotions, you can find yourself spending more money than you wanted to. The competitive spirit can cloud your judgment, spurring you to buy more than you ever wanted. Have patience. If you can't get what you want on the day, don't worry. There will be other days.</p> <h2>4. Complete Preparation</h2> <p>One of the keys to surviving Black Friday is knowing exactly what you want to buy before you ever leave the house. And not only what you want to buy, but how much you're willing to pay for it.</p> <p>On the day in question, your senses will be bombarded. Deals galore will hit you square in the face as you rush into each and every store, and it is very easy to become sidetracked. Before you know it, your cart is filled with everything but the items you actually wanted. So, stick to your guns, and stick to your list. The stores will all put out circulars well in advance of Black Friday. There are sites dedicated to Black Friday deals. Create a shopping list based on which stores you want to visit, what you want to get, and the top price you are going to pay. Follow it to the letter, and you'll stick to your budget and get the deals and items you really want.</p> <h2>5. A Good Memory</h2> <p>Most Black Friday deals are repeats of previous years. In fact, many of the <a href="https://d1l9zs272jkxri.cloudfront.net/blog/uploads/2016/09/20123212/Target-Black-Friday-Ad-2013p14-2014p14-2015p22_edited-1.jpg">deals are nearly identical</a>, down to the same brand, price, and stores offering them. Black Friday, for most companies, follows a specific formula. This is calculated. They know what people are shopping for, what will sell, and most importantly, what the healthy profit margins are. That's why you will continually see circulars offering huge discounts on luggage, pots and pans, boots, food processors, cheap DVDs, and even air mattresses.</p> <p>You won't, however, see huge discounts on the big video game systems, iPads, or other &quot;in demand&quot; tech. You will buy those regardless of the price, and stores are not going to miss out on those guaranteed dollars.</p> <h2>6. Knowing How to Compare and Save</h2> <p>Whatever your go-to way of price comparison shopping is, you need to have it locked down before the big day. Some people like apps such as <a href="http://shopsavvy.com/">ShopSavvy</a> or <a href="http://redlaser.com/application/">RedLaser</a>. Others simply pop the product into Google and see what prices show up. However you go about it, you need to have a strategy in place on the day. Don't buy anything without researching it first. If you're worried that the item will be scooped up by someone, hold onto it while you look it up. Is the deal on offer in that store the best one around? Is another store offering a mail-in rebate, or bundling it with other items for free? Your smartphone can save you hundreds of dollars on the day.</p> <h2>7. An Eye for Details</h2> <p>Frugal shoppers like to read the small print. They look at the little asterisks that are innocently slapped next to a price tag. They know that the devil is in the details, and in some stores, that devil can cost you quite a lot of money. So, get ready to look over every deal with the analytical mind of Sherlock Holmes. Is it really only $200, or are there strings attached? Do you have to buy two items together to get the price? Do you have to purchase the three-year extended warranty for the lower price? Is the steal of the day limited to only two stores in the whole state? Look closely, and make sure you are not being stung by small print.</p> <h2>8. Realizing Every Single Dollar Counts</h2> <p>Most of us are loss averse. We would much rather avoid losing $10 than find $10 in the street. On Black Friday, loss aversion can quickly crumble in the minds of shoppers. And the stores know just how to take advantage of it.</p> <p>For instance, after you buy a $450 laptop, what's another $25 on a laptop case, or a flash drive? The thing is, on any other day of the week, you would scrutinize those purchases and look around for better deals. But on Black Friday, you are shelling out so much money that the smaller purchases slip under your usually frugal radar. Remember, every dollar counts. Examine every deal, even the small ones. If they're not worth it on any other day of the week, they're not worth it on Black Friday.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-frugal-skills-you-need-to-survive-black-friday">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-score-a-black-friday-deal-without-leaving-home">6 Ways to Score a Black Friday Deal Without Leaving Home</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-best-discount-shopping-days-of-the-year">7 Best Discount Shopping Days of the Year</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-30-brilliant-ways-to-survive-black-friday-madness">Flashback Friday: 30 Brilliant Ways to Survive Black Friday Madness</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-shopping-mistakes-keeping-you-from-a-great-deal">The 6 Shopping Mistakes Keeping You From a Great Deal</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-black-friday-craziness-is-worth-it">5 Reasons Black Friday Craziness Is Worth It</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping black friday christmas shopping deals doorbusters gifts holiday shopping price comparisons retail sales strategies willpower Wed, 16 Nov 2016 09:00:07 +0000 Paul Michael 1833770 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Sneaky Ways You're Being Upsold http://www.wisebread.com/8-sneaky-ways-youre-being-upsold <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-sneaky-ways-youre-being-upsold" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_84332599_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="sneaky ways you&#039;re being upsold" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Upselling is defined as &quot;a sales technique whereby a seller induces the customer to purchase more expensive items, upgrades, or other add-ons in an attempt to make a more profitable sale.&quot; And it can be used in almost every industry where money changes hands for goods and services. Most of us can spot a big upsell &mdash; like the heavy-handed extras car dealerships will try and push on you in the financing room. But there are more subtle upsells being used on you; some you may not even realize are upsells at all. Here's how to spot them, and sidestep them. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-creative-shopping-strategy-could-save-you-tons?ref=seealso">This Creative Shopping Strategy Could Save You Tons</a>)</p> <h2>1. &quot;Did You Save Room for Dessert?&quot;</h2> <p>It seems like an innocent enough question, although if you really think about it, it's kind of insulting. &quot;Hey&hellip; did you completely pig out, or are you planning to do that with a slice of cake?&quot; However, this question is the classic restaurant upsell, pushing you to add an additional series of charges onto the bill that you were not planning on. Some restaurants will go one step further, and actually bring around a dessert trolley, or a cheese board. Then it gets even harder to say no. But it's an easy enough one to turn down. Know that your server is not interested in seeing you enjoy a delicious piece of triple-chocolate fudge-mallow brownie. He or she simply wants a bigger tip, and the more you spend, the more they get. Even if you could eat another main course, simply say you're too full&hellip; unless, of course, that sweet treat is calling your name.</p> <h2>2. &quot;This Shirt Comes With Your Choice of Tie...&quot;</h2> <p>At first, it almost sounds like a freebie. You look at the ties (or replace ties with anything else that could complement your fashion purchase) and select one. You're invested in it. Only then are you told that if you'd rather not have the tie, the shirt will be $20 less. In other words, you're paying for the tie. But, you've already invested in the tie emotionally, and may even feel embarrassed to give back the tie and pay less for the shirt. This is a common technique used by salespeople in many industries. They will offer you an item that naturally complements something you are going to buy, using language that suggests it's all part of the price. It's certainly a little deceptive, but not illegal as they will always state that you can pay less for the original item by not choosing the add-on. Sneaky.</p> <h2>3. &quot;Would You Like Fries With That?&quot;</h2> <p>Or batteries. Or a matching waistcoat. Or insurance. Whatever the industry, asking you straight up if you'd like an additional item, be it with your food, clothing, gadget, automobile, or even new home, is a classic upsell. It's become synonymous with the fast food industry, which more than any other has perfected the art of the subtle upsell. Simply asking if you want fries with a burger is a no-brainer, but not all places include them for free (looking at you, Five Guys). The most common reaction is &quot;sure,&quot; and bingo, you've just added an extra cost to the bill.</p> <h2>4. &quot;These Items Are Frequently Bought Together&hellip;&quot;</h2> <p>If you want a prime example of this subtle upsell, look no further than Amazon. When you pop an item in your cart, let's say it's a set of kitchen knives, you will see a &quot;Frequently Bought Together&quot; box that could contain a knife sharpener and cutting board. You will also see a combined price for all three. Now, some people think that buying all three will apply a discount for the bundle, but that's not usually the case. Amazon is simply upselling you a package that contains three related items. You could buy all three separately and spend the same, or buy just one extra item without losing out on any kind of discount. It's quite clever when you think about it.</p> <h2>5. &quot;For Only $50 More, You Can Get&hellip;&quot;</h2> <p>Faster processing speed. Bigger rims. An extra handset. The salesperson or, more commonly these days, website, will prompt you to get some upgrades to your purchase for a small fee. Apple and other computer manufacturers do this masterfully. You select your model, perhaps a 27-inch iMac, and then get asked a series of questions about upgrades. Would you like it to run even faster? Would you like to give it more storage space, or a more powerful graphics card? You click through the upgrades list, and by the time you've finished, your $1,500 computer now costs over $2,000. Of course, they could always offer you the best model available from the very beginning, and ask you to reduce the price by downgrading it, but that leaves a nasty taste in your mouth. No one likes de-pimping their shiny new gadget, and the starting price would be prohibitively high, resulting in fewer sales.</p> <h2>6. &quot;&hellip;And Did You Want the 16 ounce?&quot;</h2> <p>When you're in any kind of place that serves food and drink, this classic, but subtle technique is a way to upsell you without even getting you to think about it. Say, for instance, the menu lists three different sizes of steak &ndash; 8 ounce, 12 ounce, and 16 ounce. The server can easily get you to choose the most expensive of the three options simply by not acknowledging the other two. If he or she asks &quot;and which size of steak would you like?&quot; you will look at the menu and probably choose based on your hunger level, and the price. But by turning the question into one that's more presumptive, they are much more likely to get a &quot;yeah, sure&quot; response.</p> <h2>7. &quot;You Get a Lot More for Just a Little Extra Money.&quot;</h2> <p>This is a quality upsell, and it is used everywhere &mdash; from restaurants and electronics stores, to car dealerships and vacation sites. The basic premise is this; you've already committed to spending a big chunk of money, so why not spend a <em>tiny </em>bit more to get something <em>way</em> better. Maybe it's going from a $300 mountain bike, to a $400 mountain bike. But it has extra gears, a leather seat, and will last forever! When this happens, chances are the salesperson is on commission and wants a bigger check. Now, that's not to say you aren't getting value for your money. Quite often, when you pay a little more for a better quality brand, you are doing well. But, don't be fooled, as this is always about making money for the store.</p> <h2>8. &quot;Would You Like a Smaller Cocktail?&quot;</h2> <p>Most of you are probably thinking, <em>That doesn't sound much like an upsell to me</em>. But, it is, when used correctly. When this little tactic is invoked, the customer in question has already indicated that a regular drink, or dessert, is too much&hellip; either in volume, or price. They'd rather just settle the bill.</p> <p>But servers don't want you settling the bill if there is a chance you could spend more. So, they will entice you with a smaller item, which is still much better for them and the establishment than you ordering nothing at all. Every item has a profit margin. They may even make the smaller item sound like a much better deal. For example &quot;this smaller cocktail packs a real punch, and it's half the price.&quot; This doesn't just apply to restaurants though. Whenever any salesperson sees you opting for the &quot;I'll have nothing&quot; answer, they will immediately bring in smaller, cheaper options. This technique is actually known as &quot;downselling&quot; but it's still technically an upsell.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-sneaky-ways-youre-being-upsold">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-160-gift-ideas-for-everyone-you-know">Flashback Friday: 160 Gift Ideas for Everyone You Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-30-brilliant-ways-to-survive-black-friday-madness">Flashback Friday: 30 Brilliant Ways to Survive Black Friday Madness</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-coupons-trick-you-into-spending-more-money">5 Times Coupons Trick You Into Spending More Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-sneaky-store-perks-that-make-you-overspend">4 Sneaky Store Perks That Make You Overspend</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-retailers-where-you-can-negotiate-a-lower-price">11 Retailers Where You Can Negotiate a Lower Price</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Consumer Affairs Shopping frugal living sales sales tactics smart shopper upselling upsold Fri, 28 Oct 2016 10:00:10 +0000 Paul Michael 1822091 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Times You Can Score a Great Deal on a New Car http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-you-can-score-a-great-deal-on-a-new-car <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-times-you-can-score-a-great-deal-on-a-new-car" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_driving_happy_70095497.jpg" alt="Woman scoring a great deal on a new car" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When it comes to scoring a new set of wheels, most personal finance experts would agree that used is best. However, used is not always an option if your partner wants a new vehicle or if you are looking for a specific vehicle to accommodate your driving needs. That's where these tips come in.</p> <p>Buying a new car at these times can help you land a lower price on your new vehicle. Remember to work on your negotiating skills before heading to the dealership.</p> <h2>1. Labor Day</h2> <p>Labor Day has already passed this year, so keep this information in your head for future reference. Market Watch said, &quot;The time around Labor Day seems to be the sweet spot for bargain hunters, as new models jostle for space on dealers' lots with the outgoing ones.&quot; Many dealerships will offer cash back rebates and other incentives to get you to buy, so take advantage of these offers.</p> <p>We bought our Kia Sorento on Labor Day in 2012. We were initially looking at a used version, but the new model ended up being less due to not having unnecessary trim, and it came with better offers. To qualify for a $1,500 discount, we had to do a loan through them, which at 4% was horrible. We called a credit union the next day and refinanced the loan to under 2%. Sorentos were then in a settlement suit that year, which means we get reimbursed for a percentage of our gas for the life of the car &mdash; so that car is not going anywhere soon.</p> <h2>2. The End of the Year</h2> <p>Just because you missed Labor Day doesn't mean you can't still get a great deal. October, November, and December are all good months to shop too, since dealerships are trying to clear out all current year models before the New Year.</p> <p>Waiting until right before the New Year can result in the biggest discount, but it can also leave you with limited choices. Even when we bought the Sorento in 2012, the options for a 2012 model were slim. The dealership had already cleared out almost all of its 2012 inventory.</p> <h2>3. After a Huge Model Redesign</h2> <p>If the car you have your eye on has a significant model redesign, then the current model should be at a huge discount. Just make sure that you know the reasons for the huge change. Is the redesign for appearance reasons or was it to fix a number of recalled safety issues?</p> <p>I strongly recommend getting a one month pass for <a href="https://ec.consumerreports.org/ec/cro/order.htm?INTKEY=I57HLT0">ConsumerReports.org</a> for $6.95. Consumer Reports makes it simple to research car models, common problems with certain models, and recalls. It was Consumer Reports that swayed us from getting another model that had a lot of issues.</p> <h2>4. The End of the Day at the End of Month</h2> <p>If you can go to the dealership at the end of the day on the last day of the month, you have a better chance at saving money, even if there are no rebates or incentives available. Many salesmen need to meet a certain quota by the end of the month, which could put you in a great negotiating position. Plus, some salesmen are willing to lose money on a few cars if it means they will qualify for a special bonus.</p> <p>Sundays have also been proven to be a day of better discounts, especially to buying a car on Friday or Saturday. For example, going in Sunday, October 30 this year might be an opportune time to get a good deal. Sellers know they won't get many buyers on Halloween, and they still have to meet certain numbers before the month ends.</p> <p>If you do want to buy a car at the end of the day, try picking out the car and test driving it ahead of time. This way you won't be trying to look at prices and check for issues in the dark. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/17-things-car-salesmen-dont-want-you-to-know?ref=seealso">17 Things Car Salesmen Don't Want You to Know</a>)</p> <h2>5. Black Friday</h2> <p>Car dealerships have jumped on the bandwagon when it comes to Black Friday deals. So instead of hitting up the mall for Black Friday shopping, visit your local dealership. The best part is that you do not have to wake up early.</p> <p>It is best to test drive and look at cars ahead of the sale so that you don't feel rushed or pressured. Black Friday is built upon shopping hype and impulse buys, which are not needed when you are considering a large purchase.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-eneriz">Ashley Eneriz</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-you-can-score-a-great-deal-on-a-new-car">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/for-the-best-deals-of-the-year-shop-labor-day-and-skip-black-friday">For the Best Deals of the Year, Shop Labor Day and Skip Black Friday</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-shopping-mistakes-keeping-you-from-a-great-deal">The 6 Shopping Mistakes Keeping You From a Great Deal</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-best-buys-at-tj-maxx">7 Best Buys at TJ Maxx</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-black-friday-craziness-is-worth-it">5 Reasons Black Friday Craziness Is Worth It</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-you-should-always-buy-at-department-stores">6 Things You Should Always Buy at Department Stores</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation Shopping black fridays dealerships discounts end of year labor day new car sales vehicles Wed, 12 Oct 2016 10:30:08 +0000 Ashley Eneriz 1810489 at http://www.wisebread.com The Big List of Money-Saving Coupon Codes for Halloween 2016 http://www.wisebread.com/the-big-list-of-money-saving-coupon-codes-for-halloween-2016 <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-big-list-of-money-saving-coupon-codes-for-halloween-2016" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/boys_halloween_costumes_75169753.jpg" alt="Kids using big list of coupon codes for Halloween 2016" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Halloween spending will hit an all-time high this year. The National Retail Federation's annual survey reveals that consumers will <a href="https://nrf.com/media/press-releases/halloween-spending-reach-84-billion-highest-survey-history">spend $8.4 billion</a> on Halloween purchases this year. That's a lot of pumpkins!</p> <p>While Halloween is fun to celebrate, it shouldn't blow your budget, especially since the pricier holidays, Thanksgiving and Christmas, happen shortly after. Coupon codes are a great way to save money on Halloween purchases. Don't forget to shop through a cash back site, such as <a href="https://www.ebates.com/">eBates</a>, if you are shopping online. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/30-cash-back-sites-to-earn-you-thousands-per-year?ref=seealso">30+ Cash Back Sites to Earn You Thousands Per Year</a>)</p> <p>All codes have been checked to ensure they work. Check back all month for updated coupons to your favorite Halloween stores.</p> <h2>Carter's</h2> <p><a href="http://www.carters.com/">Carter's</a> has incredibly cute costumes for babies and young toddlers. You can also score some Halloween festive wear for babies and kids up to size 8.</p> <ul> <li>20% off $40 coupon online or in-store when you sign up for Carter's email notifications.</li> <li>20% off $40: CART1016<strong> </strong>(expires 10/31)</li> <li>15% off your whole order: CART3230 (expires 12/31)</li> <li>20% off $50: CAROCT20 (expires 10/31)</li> </ul> <h2>Spirit Halloween</h2> <p><a href="https://www.spirithalloween.com/">Spirit Halloween</a> offers 20% off one item when you sign up for their email notifications. Be sure to check Spirit's social media accounts for more online and printable coupons.</p> <ul> <li>20% off one item: SPEN16 (expires 10/31)</li> <li>20% off one item and free shipping: SPHN1629 (expires 10/31)</li> <li>25% off one item: DONTLEAVE25 (expires 11/02)</li> <li>$5 off orders $30+, $10 off $50+, or $25 off $100+: TIER2016A (expires 11/1)</li> <li>$10 off orders $65+, $20 off $100+, $30 off $150+, or $50 off $200+: HIGHTIER (expires 11/02)</li> <li>Free shipping on orders over $30: SHIP30 (expires 11/1)</li> <li>25% off already reduced sale items: CLEAR25 (expires 11/1)</li> </ul> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/50-best-deals-coupons-sites?ref=seealso">50 Best Deals and Coupon Sites</a></p> <h2>Halloween Costumes</h2> <p><a href="http://www.halloweencostumes.com/">Halloween Costumes</a> offers price match and costume rentals. On select costumes, you can save 50% off the price by renting. Return shipping on rentals is free. They even have pre-owned costumes for sale and pay for trade-ins on certain styles.</p> <ul> <li>Sign up for their email notifications and receive 20% off your first order.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Like them on Facebook for a <a href="http://www.halloweencostumes.com/coupon-code-discounts.html">$10 off $60 coupon</a>.</li> </ul> <h2>Halloween Express</h2> <p>Halloween Express offers a <a href="http://www.halloweenexpress.com/price-guarantee.php">110% price match guarantee</a>. If within 14 days of purchasing an eligible item from them online and then find a lower price for the same item on a direct competitor's U.S. website, they will refund the difference plus 10%. However, be sure to read all of the exclusions.</p> <ul> <li>15% off when you sign up for Halloween Express' email notifications.</li> <li>20% off your order: CYQJ328MZTE</li> <li>25% off any order: SAVE25CJ</li> <li>Free shipping on orders of $29 or more: FS2016ZLA</li> <li>Get $10 off $65 or more, $25 off $125 or more, $50 off $199, or more: BIGSAVINGS2016</li> </ul> <h2>Costume Discounters</h2> <p><a href="https://www.costumediscounters.com/">Costume Discounters</a> currently has a 10% cash back offer through <a href="https://www.ebates.com/coupons/costume-discounters/index.htm?query=costume&amp;position=3&amp;type=suggest&amp;store=10706&amp;navigation_id=23078">eBates</a>.</p> <ul> <li>25% off an order over $20: SAVE25 (expires 11/01)</li> </ul> <h2>Anytime Costumes</h2> <p><a href="https://www.anytimecostumes.com/">Anytime Costumes</a> currently has an 11% cash back offer through <a href="https://www.ebates.com/coupons/anytime-costumes/index.htm?query=anytime&amp;position=1&amp;type=suggest&amp;store=9606&amp;navigation_id=23078">eBates</a>.</p> <ul> <li>15% off an order over $25 and free shipping: SHOP15</li> </ul> <h2>Wholesale Halloween Costumes</h2> <p><a href="https://www.wholesalehalloweencostumes.com/">Wholesale Halloween Costumes</a> has a 9% cash back offer through <a href="https://www.ebates.com/coupons/wholesale-halloween-costumes/index.htm?query=wholes&amp;position=1&amp;type=suggest&amp;store=11432&amp;navigation_id=23078">eBates</a> for a limited time.</p> <ul> <li>Save 5% off your order: SAVE5</li> <li>$10 off an order over $80: PTEN80</li> <li>20% off of clearance: CLEAR20</li> <li>Free shipping on orders over $75: SUMMER75 (expires 12/30)</li> <li>Free shipping on orders over $40: FBLIKE</li> </ul> <h2>Party City</h2> <ul> <li>20% off all Halloween orders over $50 and free shipping: TRICK39M</li> </ul> <h2>Joann&rsquo;s</h2> <p>For those who are ambitious enough to craft your costumes this year, here are coupons for you. Don&rsquo;t forget to check out <a href="http://www.joann.com/">Joann&rsquo;s</a> fun Halloween décor.</p> <ul> <li>40% off one online item: GFHV303 (expires 10/08)</li> </ul> <h2>More Ideas on How to Save This Halloween</h2> <p>The coupon codes above will help you get a discount on Halloween costumes, décor, and party supplies. For those looking for more money-saving advice, try these five Halloween saving's tricks.</p> <h3>1. Swap Costumes With a Friend</h3> <p>If you have kids that are similar ages/sizes, then you can trade costumes. Even if your children are different sizes, borrow the accessories and save.</p> <h3>2. Don't Skip the Dollar Store</h3> <p>Your local dollar store and .99-Cent Only Store can be great shops for affordable Halloween décor and costume props. Just be advised before buying candy there. It might cost you more than buying candy at a warehouse.</p> <h3>3. Wait to Buy Pumpkins</h3> <p>If you wait until the 30th to buy your Halloween pumpkin, you can save almost half the cost, depending on the seller. One year, at Trader Joes, I received a free pumpkin on the 31st.</p> <h3>4. Look for Free Activities</h3> <p>Most communities offer free fall activities to the public. Check with your city's parks, churches, and mall to see what is being offered.</p> <h3>5. DIY Fall Decorations</h3> <p>Pinterest is a well of good ideas for inexpensive DIY décor ideas. Also, check out <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-scariest-halloween-frights-you-can-make-from-trash?ref=seealso">13 Scariest Halloween Frights You Can Make From Trash</a>.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-eneriz">Ashley Eneriz</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-big-list-of-money-saving-coupon-codes-for-halloween-2016">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-you-spending-too-much-on-halloween-this-year">Are You Spending Too Much on Halloween This Year?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-on-christmas-shopping-with-this-clever-gift-card-strategy">Save on Christmas Shopping With This Clever Gift Card Strategy</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-online-retailers-who-let-you-stack-coupons">9 Online Retailers Who Let You Stack Coupons</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-black-friday-craziness-is-worth-it">5 Reasons Black Friday Craziness Is Worth It</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-frugal-christmas-decorating-hacks">14 Frugal Christmas Decorating Hacks</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Shopping costumes coupon codes decorations discounts Halloween Holidays kids online shopping sales Thu, 06 Oct 2016 10:30:14 +0000 Ashley Eneriz 1805690 at http://www.wisebread.com 9 Smart Money Moves to Make Before the Holiday Season Begins http://www.wisebread.com/9-smart-money-moves-to-make-before-the-holiday-season-begins <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/9-smart-money-moves-to-make-before-the-holiday-season-begins" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couple_christmas_shopping_51383450.jpg" alt="Couple making money moves before the holiday season" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Fall is in full swing, and before you know it you'll be battling the throngs during holiday shopping season.</p> <p>It may be make or break for many retailers, but it can also be challenging for consumers if they don't do a little bit of planning. Making just a handful of minor financial and lifestyle moves before Christmas and other winter holidays hit can save you money and aggravation later.</p> <p>Here are nine tips for getting yourself straightened out before the holiday rush.</p> <h2>1. Push Money Into a Savings Account</h2> <p>If you want to avoid racking up more credit card debt, it will help to have some cash set aside to pay for holiday gifts. Consider using an online savings account and making an automatic transfer from your usual checking account each month until the end of November. Even $100 a month saved between now and Thanksgiving will give you $200 (plus a little bit of interest) to spend.</p> <h2>2. Check the Sales Now</h2> <p>We all know about Black Friday sales, but the reality is that stores place deep discounts on items throughout the year. There's no guarantee that a particular product will be at its cheapest on the day after Thanksgiving or any other day leading up to Christmas. Remember that many stores will roll out Veterans Day and Columbus Day sales, and you may find great deals on clothing at the end of summer when stores are looking to unload inventory and bring in fall and winter items.</p> <h2>3. Pay Off Your Credit Cards</h2> <p>Holiday shopping can be a debt creator. The National Foundation for Credit Counseling reported last year that there is a 25% spike in the number of people seeking help with credit card bills in January and February. If you are already paying the minimums on cards or have high debt, the addition of holiday shopping bills can be crippling.</p> <p>High debt can leave you at risk of maxing out credit limits. At the very least, your <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-one-ratio-is-the-key-to-a-good-credit-score?ref=internal">ratio of debt to available credit</a> could rise, thus hurting your credit score. Pay down your current debts now, so that any new debt won't be adding to an existing problem.</p> <h2>4. Find Stores With Layaway</h2> <p>For people who want to avoid credit card debt, layaway can be a great option for holiday shopping. With layaway, you can put an item aside at the store and receive it only when it is totally paid for. Many stores offer layaway months before the holidays, so you can select items now and have them paid off in time. Walmart this year began offering layaway on September 2. Kmart has eight-week and 12-week layaway plans now, and Toys R Us has 90-day layaway contracts. One caveat: Some stores do charge fees for layaway services, so be sure to read the fine print before signing up.</p> <h2>5. Track Down Any Money Owed to You</h2> <p>Have you been diligent about seeking reimbursement for work-related expenses? Have you received all money you've earned from freelance work? Now is the time to assess what outstanding cash is due to you. If money is tight, this could help you afford the gifts you want this holiday season.</p> <h2>6. Max Out Your Retirement Accounts</h2> <p>If you have access to retirement accounts, try to put as much money in them now as you can. You can contribute as much as $18,000 annually into a 401K plan and $5,500 into an IRA. The closer you get to these limits, the better off you'll be in retirement. You have until Tax Day next year to max out these accounts, but it may be best to contribute generously now before holiday expenses hit.</p> <h2>7. Make Sure Your W-4 Is Up to Date</h2> <p>If you work for a company, you probably filled out a W-4 form when you were hired. This form tells the IRS how much in taxes to withhold from your paycheck. But it often needs to be updated, particularly when you have gotten married, added a child to the family, or had a significant change in household income. Now is the time to check your W-4 to see that you aren't paying too much or too little in taxes.</p> <h2>8. Do Some Tax Loss Harvesting</h2> <p>If you sold shares of stock at any point during the year, you may be on the hook for capital gains taxes. But you may be able to avoid a tax bill by selling other shares of stock at a loss. In essence, the loss may outweigh the gains. There's nothing wrong with taking the proceeds from a sale and investing right back into the market, as long as you're not investing in the exact same securities. It might make sense to do some tax loss harvesting now, before the holiday rush hits and you forget.</p> <h2>9. Get Your Cars in for Servicing</h2> <p>Wait, what do your cars have to do with the holiday season? Well, car repairs are often a big source of unexpected expenses. And the last thing you want is hundreds or even thousands of dollars in bills right when you're doing the holiday shopping. Get your car in now, and you'll avoid a hefty expense later. Moreover, you'll be less likely to have the car breakdown in unpleasant, winter weather.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tim-lemke">Tim Lemke</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-smart-money-moves-to-make-before-the-holiday-season-begins">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-big-list-of-money-saving-coupon-codes-for-halloween-2016">The Big List of Money-Saving Coupon Codes for Halloween 2016</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-frugal-christmas-decorating-hacks">14 Frugal Christmas Decorating Hacks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-160-gift-ideas-for-everyone-you-know">Flashback Friday: 160 Gift Ideas for Everyone You Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-champion-of-savings-over-spending">A champion of savings over spending</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-to-monetize-your-unwanted-gifts">How to Get Rid of Your Unwanted Gifts and Make Money Too</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Shopping Christmas debt Holidays layaway retirement contributions sales saving spending taxes Mon, 03 Oct 2016 09:00:05 +0000 Tim Lemke 1803457 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Highly Effective Ways to Save Without Clipping a Coupon http://www.wisebread.com/6-highly-effective-ways-to-save-without-clipping-a-coupon <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-highly-effective-ways-to-save-without-clipping-a-coupon" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_using_phone_52920552.jpg" alt="Woman saving money without clipping coupons" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Let's face it, clipping coupons can be a very time consuming activity &mdash; and it's definitely not for everyone. In terms of savings, the time spent finding, cutting, and organizing coupons is not always worth it. It's with this in mind that I've come up with some easy ways to save significant money that don't require a coupon. So put down the scissors, walk away from the Sunday paper, and save money with these insider tips instead. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-online-retailers-who-let-you-stack-coupons?ref=seealso">9 Retailers That Let You Stack Coupons</a>)</p> <h2>1. Shop on the Right Day of the Week</h2> <p>Were you aware that many popular retailers have specific days of the week where they do all of their internal store markdowns? Shop right afterward, and you'll have first dibs on new clearance items, no coupon required. For example, save money on clearance clothing when they actually have your size or color of choice in-stock. Here are a few markdown days to keep in mind so you can shop and save accordingly:</p> <ul> <li>Kohl's: I had an employee tell me to shop on the second and fourth Saturday of every month. She said those are the two days when you'll find the freshest markdowns.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Macy's: I was told by an anonymous employee that they start their markdowns on Sundays and wrap things up by Tuesday morning. Shop on Tuesday afternoon and get first dibs on new markdowns.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Old Navy: The day to shop at Old Navy is Wednesday. Try it and you'll often find the clearance section stocked with new clothing as well as clearance stuff that has been marked down even further.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Ross Dress for Less: If you're a big Ross shopper like myself, you'll want to check out their inventory starting on a Monday. I was told by an employee, who heads up her store's clearance department, that Monday is the only day they do their markdowns.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>JCPenney: If you can shop at JCPenney on the first and third Friday of every month, you'll find a plethora of new clearance deals to pick from.</li> </ul> <h2>2. Always Use a Cash Back Site</h2> <p>If you're shopping online and not doing it through a reputable&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/30-cash-back-sites-to-earn-you-thousands-per-year">cash back website</a>, you're clearly leaving money on the table. In recent years, cash back sites have had the reputation of being more hassle than they're worth. After all, who has time to jump through a bunch of hoops to save a measly 50 cents? Those days are officially gone. Popular sites like Ebates, TopCashback, and BeFrugal have made it incredibly easy to shop online and get significant money back on your purchases by utilizing mobile apps and browser add-ons or extensions.</p> <p>Also, the amount of money you get back has risen as well. A perfect example is TopCashback.com as they give back all of the commissions they receive from retailers to their users. So instead of splitting the 8% with their users, they're giving it all to them &mdash; and instead are making their money via advertising and charging retailers for premium placement on their website. Because of this generous business model, the cash back rates are definitely high enough to make it worth your while.</p> <h2>3. Subscribe and Save Programs</h2> <p>Subscribe and save programs are an oft forgotten way to save money on household items that you'll need on a recurring basis. No coupon clipping required. Think things like diapers, laundry detergent, dog food, paper products, and trash bags, to name a few. The two leading players are Amazon and Target and the savings their programs provide is substantial. Their pricing often beats that of warehouse clubs like Costco and Sam's Club. Perhaps the best feature is they both come with free delivery, which means no more roller carts full of dog food and toilet paper to try and squeeze into the minivan.</p> <h2>4. Wal-Mart Savings Catcher App</h2> <p>If the idea of clipping coupons for your next trip to Wal-Mart gives you the cold sweats, their <a href="http://savingscatcher.walmart.com/" target="_blank">Savings&nbsp;Catcher App</a> is definitely for you. All the app requires you to do is scan your Wal-Mart store receipt after each visit. No scissors required. Wal-Mart will then scour the prices and ads from local competitors and credit your account if they find a lower price on something you purchased. Think of it like an easy way to guarantee you get the lowest price in town on everything you buy.</p> <p>I've been using the app for close to a year and my balance is currently at $42.92. That's a pretty good return on probably 15 minutes of my time. Then when you want to cash out, you can either get a Wal-Mart gift card or redeem via Bluebird by American Express.</p> <h2>5. The Ibotta App</h2> <p>The popular <a href="http://ibotta.com/r/jcsgjbv" target="_blank">Ibotta's</a> tagline, &quot;Better Than Coupons,&quot; pretty much sums it up. Instead of clipping coupons, you redeem rebates on hundreds of grocery store items, most of which you'll be buying anyway, and get money back.</p> <p>What makes the app stand out from the competition are the rebates available for generic items bought at <em>any</em> store. Buy a loaf of bread or a gallon of milk from the local corner store, and you can redeem a rebate on each. Then team up with friends and family to start earning cool $5 teamwork bonuses every month and your account balance will really grow. Once your account reaches $20, you can cash out via PayPal, Venmo, or a slew of gift cards from popular retailers.</p> <h2>6. Take Advantage of Loyalty Programs</h2> <p>While loyalty programs often get a bad reputation as nothing more than a way for retailers to push advertising on you, they actually serve as a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-store-loyalty-programs-that-are-worth-it">great way to save</a> if you do it right. The key is to only join the programs that'll give you rewards on purchases you'd be making anyway. Here are a few awesome free programs that jump to mind.</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.cvs.com/extracare/landing.jsp">CVS ExtraCare</a>: You earn a flat 2% back in ExtraBucks from almost all your purchases. (Excludes alcohol, lottery, gift cards, postage stamps, fishing licenses, and the like.) In addition, once you fill 10 prescriptions you get $5 back in ExtraBucks.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><a href="https://www.walgreens.com/balancerewards/balance-rewards.jsp">Walgreens Balance Rewards</a>: Earn 10 points for every dollar spent. Then once you reach 5,000, points you get a free $5 reward.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><a href="http://www.homedepot.com/c/pro_xtra">HomeDepot Pro Xtra</a>: Home Depot's loyalty program is a no-brainer if you buy in large quantities. After joining, you start with $20 of your first $200+ purchase. Then you get access to additional savings after that, like 10% off your $2,000+ paint order.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><a href="http://www.safeway.com/ShopStores/RewardPoints.page">Safeway RewardPoints</a>: Along with specific in-store reward deals, Safeway's program allows you to save significant money on your gasoline bill every year. When you spend up to $100 at Safeway, you get a $.10/gallon discount on Safeway gas. Spend $200, and they double it to $. 20 cents less per gallon.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-store-credit-card-target-redcard">Target REDcard</a>: The Target card works a little different from most as it connects to your checking account and works as a debit card. The strong benefits of 5% off every order, free shipping from Target.com, and 30 extra return days makes it a great option for loyal Target shoppers.</li> </ul> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-highly-effective-ways-to-save-without-clipping-a-coupon">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-smart-ways-to-save-money-this-year-without-clipping-a-coupon">6 Smart Ways to Save Money This Year (Without Clipping a Coupon)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-shopping-mistakes-keeping-you-from-a-great-deal">The 6 Shopping Mistakes Keeping You From a Great Deal</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-couponing-apps">The 10 Best Couponing Apps</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-coupons-trick-you-into-spending-more-money">5 Times Coupons Trick You Into Spending More Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-stupid-shopping-mistakes-even-smart-people-make">10 Stupid Shopping Mistakes Even Smart People Make</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping apps cash back coupons insider secrets loyalty programs markdowns sales saving money stores Wed, 14 Sep 2016 10:30:11 +0000 Kyle James 1791538 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Telltale Signs a Good Deal Is a Bad Deal http://www.wisebread.com/7-telltale-signs-a-good-deal-is-a-bad-deal <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-telltale-signs-a-good-deal-is-a-bad-deal" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_shopping_towels_95332899.jpg" alt="Woman learning signs a good deal is a bad deal" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I love a good deal, don't get me wrong. But sometimes, what seems like a good deal turns out to be a waste of money. The signature of a bad deal is that you are spending extra money or time to get something you don't really need or wouldn't normally buy. There are lots of ways that savvy sellers can make a bad deal seem like a good one.</p> <p>Here are some of the most common types of bad deals that people get tricked into thinking are good. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-shopping-mistakes-keeping-you-from-a-great-deal?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 6 Shopping Mistakes Keeping You From a Great Deal</a>)</p> <h2>1. So Cheap, Might as Well Buy a Ton ...</h2> <p>When I was a freshman in college, a nearby fast food place had an amazing deal on hamburgers, selling three for a dollar. My roommate and I decided to stock up and buy 100 burgers to freeze and eat all semester to provide a cheap food supply. What could go wrong with a master plan like this? We ate all of the hamburgers that weekend! Instead of saving money, we ended up blowing a lot of extra cash and eating <em>way </em>too many hamburgers. The lesson I learned is that buying a large supply of cheap items to save money is not necessarily a good deal. Having a large supply of bargain items around can result in using a lot more than normal if you are not careful.</p> <h2>2. Supersizing</h2> <p>You might think paying a little more to get the next larger size is a good deal, but it is not if you don't need the larger size. You are likely paying more to get something you don't need, which is practically the definition of a bad deal. Why do so many people step up to a larger size than they need? The psychology of the deal makes spending only 10% more money to get 50% more product almost irresistible. Supersizing can be a good deal if you are sharing one supersized meal among multiple people, but few of us really need the extra calories and fat.</p> <h2>3. Buy Two, Get One Free!</h2> <p>Free stuff sounds great, but do you really want to buy two of something you only need one of in order to get a third one for free? It is hard to resist an opportunity to get something free, but this deal has a couple of downsides. First, there is the problem of having to buy two of something. That is likely twice as much as you would usually buy. Then there is the problem of having to store three items and try to use all of it before it goes bad, gets broken, etc. A deal like this limits your options. Let's say you end up with three bottles of mouthwash by taking a &quot;Buy Two, Get One Free&quot; deal. You might wish you could switch to a different kind after a few weeks, but you already have a six-month supply in your closet.</p> <h2>4. &quot;Near Code&quot; Items</h2> <p>If you see a display of highly discounted items for sale at the grocery store, it may mean that they are &quot;near code.&quot; In other words, the bargain items are only a few days away from reaching their expiration date. Grocery items are usually good for some amount of time past the expiration date, but buying a large amount of these &quot;near code&quot; items to save money can be a risky deal. You can easily end up spending more money overall if some of the &quot;near code&quot; items do go bad or get thrown away by family members and are wasted.</p> <h2>5. Coupon for Something Expensive</h2> <p>One reason that stores and manufacturers put out coupons is to get you to try new products. Often these products are priced outside your normal budget at full price, but become affordable with a coupon. The problem with trying discounted expensive items is that the coupons don't last forever, and you might end up using the more expensive product all of the time. The $2 you saved with your coupon on the initial purchase will quickly be wiped out if you end up buying the more expensive item on a regular basis.</p> <h2>6. Product of the Month Clubs</h2> <p>I learned that you can get a lot of nice bottles of wine for a low introductory rate from a wine of the month club. But there is a reason product of the month clubs offer such a great sign-up deal &mdash; to get you started on a subscription that costs a lot of money over time. I stayed with my wine club for over a year and got to try some great wine that was delivered in a very convenient way, but it cost a lot of money. Eventually, I came to my senses and decided to seek out my own wine bargains at grocery stores for less than half the cost. It is easy to simply stay subscribed to a product of the month club when you enjoy the product and the convenience of automatically receiving it in the mail. This is the trap that product of the month clubs set, and it works!</p> <h2>7. Product Demonstrations</h2> <p>I once signed up to have an in-home demonstration of a vacuum cleaner in exchange for receiving a free prize, a $30 humidifier. Unfortunately, the vacuum demonstration turned out to be a two-and-a-half hour high pressure sales pitch for a $2,000 vacuum cleaner followed by a pitch to join a multilevel marketing (MLM) organization to sell vacuum cleaners to strangers to earn a free vacuum. Talk about a pleasant evening! The finale was that the sales person became so frustrated after she spent that much time and effort and was unable to sell anything to me that she stormed off and I never received my free prize. I learned my lesson &mdash; enduring a product demonstration or sales pitch is rarely a good deal no matter what free prize that is offered. At best, you will waste a few hours. At worst, you might end up buying an expensive item you don't need.</p> <p><em>What seemingly &quot;good deals&quot; have turned out to be bad deals for you?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dr-penny-pincher">Dr Penny Pincher</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-telltale-signs-a-good-deal-is-a-bad-deal">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-coupons-trick-you-into-spending-more-money">5 Times Coupons Trick You Into Spending More Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-big-list-of-money-saving-coupon-codes-for-halloween-2016">The Big List of Money-Saving Coupon Codes for Halloween 2016</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/should-you-sign-up-for-that-store-credit-card">Should You Sign Up for That Store Credit Card?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-things-to-never-pay-full-price-for">25 Things to Never Pay Full Price For</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-you-should-always-buy-at-department-stores">6 Things You Should Always Buy at Department Stores</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping bad deals bogo bulk shopping buy one get one coupon codes discounts product demonstrations sales Fri, 29 Jul 2016 09:00:10 +0000 Dr Penny Pincher 1761379 at http://www.wisebread.com The 6 Shopping Mistakes Keeping You From a Great Deal http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-shopping-mistakes-keeping-you-from-a-great-deal <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-6-shopping-mistakes-keeping-you-from-a-great-deal" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_happy_shopping_71503441.jpg" alt="Woman making shopping mistakes keeping her from a great deal" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>In today's digital retail world, there are plenty of clever ways to save money while shopping, including traditional coupons, price protection policies, or cash back apps. But unfortunately, many shoppers still make some big mistakes along the way &mdash; mistakes that result in them paying way more than they should, either online or in-store. Here are some of the most common mistakes, and how to avoid them in the future.</p> <h2>1. Failing to Compare Prices</h2> <p>If you're blindly making purchases without investigating price, you're clearly spending more than you should. With the advent of smart shopping apps like&nbsp;<a href="http://shopsavvy.com/">ShopSavvy</a> and <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/quick-scan-barcode-scanner/id446067710" target="_blank">Quick Scan</a>, there's no reason not to compare prices on significant purchases. These apps work by simply scanning the item's bar code, and within seconds, you'll know if the product is sold cheaper down the street or online. Get in the habit of using one of these apps regularly and you'll never overpay again.</p> <h2>2. Never Considering Price-Protection Policies</h2> <p>While Amazon recently axed their seven-day price protection policy, many popular retailers still offer it. This is important to know, as retailers are always trying to anticipate demand and thus are constantly changing their prices, especially online. Take advantage of the following retailers' price-protection policies.</p> <ul> <li><strong>Best Buy (15 days):</strong> For an in-store purchase, simply return with your receipt and head straight to customer service. For an online purchase, call them at 1-888-BESTBUY to request your price adjustment.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Costco (30 days):</strong> Hang onto your receipt and if you notice a lower price within 30 days, simply visit the customer relations desk and receive the difference. If for some reason you lose your receipt, you can always return the item (no receipt required) and rebuy at the lower price.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Dick's Sporting Goods (14 days):</strong> For in-store purchases, you must return to the store of original purchase, with receipt, to get your price adjustment. For online purchases, call them at 1-877-846-9997 to request a price adjustment.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Home Depot (14 days):</strong> Bring the item and receipt back to the store within 14 days if the price has been lowered. For online purchases, you can call customer service at 1-800-430-3376.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Kohl's (14 days):</strong> You'll need the original receipt to get a Kohl's price adjustment within 14 days or purchase. Items that don't qualify include clearance, BOGO, and Kohl's Cares merchandise.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Macy's (14 days):</strong> Simply bring back your receipt within 14 days for in-store purchases. For online orders, <a href="https://www.customerservice-macys.com/app/help/price_adjust#formstart">use this form</a> to get your price adjustment.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Staples (14 days):</strong> Take your original receipt back to Staples within 14 days and get the lower price. For an online purchase, call them at 1-800-333-3330 to get your price adjustment.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Target (7 days):</strong> Bring your receipt in, within seven days, if the item you bought goes down in price. Clearance items are not eligible for price protection. Also, keep an eye out on competitor's pricing as Target will also price match the following retailers within seven days of your purchase: Amazon, Walmart.com, BestBuy.com, ToysRUs.com, and BabiesRUs.com.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Wal-Mart (7 days):</strong> Wal-Mart will refund the difference if the price drops within seven days of your purchase. Exclusions include clearance, special buys, and value of the day products.</li> </ul> <h2>3. Buying the Wrong Items in Bulk</h2> <p>When it comes to buying items in bulk from warehouse clubs like Costco and Sam's, some items don't make the grade and should stay out of your shopping cart completely. Here are some to be aware of.</p> <ul> <li><strong>Brown rice:</strong> Due to the oil content in brown rice, it only lasts for three to six months on average, compared to an indefinite shelf life for white rice. Only buy what you can consume in a few months.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Condiments:</strong> Unless you eat hot dogs and hamburgers on a daily basis, you'll hardly ever use up all of the ketchup, mustard, and mayonnaise before they go bad.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Cooking oils:</strong> They just don't have a very long shelf life, so only buy if you know you'll use them before their expiration date.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Nuts:</strong> Because they are loaded with oil, they tend to go rancid fairly quickly. Even when stored in an ideal temperature and humidity, they only last a couple of months.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Bleach:</strong> This one was a surprise to learn. Apparently bleach is only usable for three to six months; after that it starts to lose its effectiveness.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Baking powder:</strong> A big box of baking powder is often a bad buy, as you typically don't need much, and it only lasts for six to 12 months, depending on how you store it.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Beer:</strong> Many shoppers will stock up on beer for an upcoming party and overbuy, leaving them with a lot leftover. If you're not a beer drinker, be warned that most beers only have a shelf life of three to five months.</li> </ul> <h2>4. Assuming the Final Price Is What You Have to Pay</h2> <p>If you assume the price on the tag is what you're stuck paying, you're clearly doing it all wrong. You've failed to consider money-saving tools like coupons, cash back, and the idea of&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-retailers-where-you-can-negotiate-a-lower-price">negotiating a lower price</a>. Here is how to take advantage of each:</p> <ul> <li><strong>Coupons:</strong> When shopping in-store, arm your smartphone with the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.couponsherpa.com/mobile-coupons/">CouponSherpa</a> and&nbsp;<a href="http://www.retailmenot.com/mobile/">RetailMeNot</a> apps. The combination of both will provide you with a plethora of coupons to thousands of stores which the cashier can simply scan when you're checking out.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Cash back:</strong> Use free apps like&nbsp;<a href="https://ibotta.com/r/jcsgjbv">Ibotta</a> and&nbsp;<a href="https://checkout51.com/">Checkout51</a> gather rebates at the grocery store on items you'll be buying anyway. You will be amazed how quickly your cash back rebates add up. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/30-cash-back-sites-to-earn-you-thousands-per-year?utm_source=wisebread&amp;utm_medium=seealso&amp;utm_campaign=article">Earn Thousands Per Year with These Cash Back Sites</a>)<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Negotiate:</strong> Always look for damaged packaging, floor models, and imperfect items and negotiate a deal. Often times they will already be marked down, but managers want them out of the store quickly. To accomplish this, they will often sweeten the deal for you by 10% &mdash; 20% if you politely ask.</li> </ul> <h2>5. Always Buying Brand New</h2> <p>If you have the mindset that &quot;new is always better,&quot; you're making a big shopping blunder. If you can&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-you-should-always-buy-used">consider buying used</a> when making big purchases like a new car, to small purchases like textbooks, furniture, tools, and exercise equipment, you'll save significant money. After all, it makes smart financial sense to let someone else take the depreciation hit. While Craigslist is the obvious place to start your search, don't forget about&nbsp;<a href="http://gsalr.com/">GSALR.com</a> which helps you find garage sales in your local area. The site even offers a Google map to each garage sale and allows you to filter your search by specific keywords like &quot;furniture,&quot; &quot;baby clothes,&quot; or &quot;golf clubs.&quot;</p> <h2>6. Stocking Up Because It's a &quot;Deal&quot;</h2> <p>Do you ever fight the temptation to stock up when you find a good deal, even if in the back of your mind you know you don't need more than one? It's an easy trap to fall into and it often leads to overspending. An easy way to remedy this problem is to stick to your shopping list, and budget, and know that buying excess &quot;deals&quot; often leads to excess waste.</p> <p><em>What shopping mistakes have led you to overspend in the past?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-shopping-mistakes-keeping-you-from-a-great-deal">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-couponing-apps">The 10 Best Couponing Apps</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-coupons-trick-you-into-spending-more-money">5 Times Coupons Trick You Into Spending More Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-highly-effective-ways-to-save-without-clipping-a-coupon">6 Highly Effective Ways to Save Without Clipping a Coupon</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-social-media-can-save-you-money">6 Ways Social Media Can Save You Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-smart-ways-to-save-money-this-year-without-clipping-a-coupon">6 Smart Ways to Save Money This Year (Without Clipping a Coupon)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping cash back coupons deals discounts negotiation price comparisons price protection sales saving money Tue, 28 Jun 2016 10:00:09 +0000 Kyle James 1738706 at http://www.wisebread.com