Saving Money: Find Online Coupons
Did anyone else's parents spend every Sunday afternoon combing the newspapers for deals, clipping coupons? I don't know about you, but as a working mom, I just don't have the time. Still, I live for a good bargain! Thank goodness coupons have gone virtual, and we have access to coupons and discounts galore for actual brand names and products we like.
First, think about an item that's on your shopping list today. Does the baby need a new car seat? Does your daughter need a dress for a special occasion? Did the dog chew up your flip-flops? Whatever is on your list, don't you dare pay retail! Chances are you can find a coupon for it. Let's see what bargain you can dig up. Here's how to be a smart coupon "clipper":
- Think smart. First, be sure that you've outlined your Needs vs. Wants to determine that what's on your shopping list should really be on your list.
- Know where to go. Head to discount sites like Dealio.com, where you can find online coupons for stores like Macy's and Babies "R" Us. Some of my other favorites are FatWallet.com and RetailMeNot.com, where you can search retailers like Sears and Wal-Mart, as well as get user-posts of coupon-codes and special offers.
Another great site to check out is CheapCheapCheap.com which highlights real deals from the best retailers with great customer service.
- Try bidding. When I was pregnant and on a tight budget I looked for new baby clothes on eBay—search for brand names you love and look for the code NWT (new with tags) or EUC (excellent used condition) for super steals. Sellers also create "lots" by sizes, so you could actually score baby a whole "new" wardrobe! (Well, it's new to him, anyway). Don't forget that Amazon.com also lists auctions, but watch out for shipping costs, which can sometimes cancel out any retail savings. You can check out shipping costs ahead of time at PriceGrabber.com.
- Don't go overboard. Remember, just because you're getting discounts doesn't mean you can go crazy. Create a budget and stick to it!
As a parent, we always have to make those extra purchases. But rather than letting one shopping trip bust your budget, take the time to find a bargain that can lead to big-time savings!
Get more financial advice from our personal finance expert, Carmen Wong Ulrich!