People that know me, know that I like to shop but that I always want to find the best deal for whatever it is that I'm looking for. I'm not the type of person that's going to pick out the cheapest one on the shelf, I tend to lean towards the higher quality stuff -- but rarely at retail cost! So what places do I like to shop people ask? Here are just a few ideas to check out.
Ebates & Rebates!
***If you are purchasing online...use eBates, it really is free money for you!
I just checked my account and saw that I have received over $167 in cash over the last few years. All you have to do is go through the ebates.com link when you are ready to purchase something. So many stores are on there and you can stack a coupon code with your rebate. Nordstrom.com 5%, REI.com 3% and the list goes on. Heck, eBay even gives you 2-6% cash back!
1. find the item on eBay or other online store
2. add it to your watch list or cart (I believe you have to use "Buy it Now" on eBay which is what I use over 75% of the time, more on that later.)
3. go to ebates.com and find the store link
4. click on the link and purchase
5. Tada! your rebate deposit will get deposited in paypal.com account (or mailed a check) every few months. It really does add up.
(If you do decide to give it a try, please click through my link and I will get a bonus, but I highly recommend them even without it!)
*** Do a quick search for a coupon or discount code for the store where you are purchasing it from. Just search the dot.com address or store name with the words "coupon", "code" or "discount". You might just be surprised what you will find! I am usually able to save at least a few dollars and sometimes a lot more, but sometimes you have to try a few different codes for one that will work. Couponfinder.com, Tjoos.com & couponcabin.com are a few different sites you will run into. I never use one that wants me to put in an email address to see the code.
Tips to a successful Craigslist transaction:
My #1 favorite has to be Craigslist.org, you will be amazed at what you can find there. Someday I will post pics of my house that we have completely remodeled. Most of our furniture or big items where bought via Craigslist. Our gas insert fireplace, brand new double wall oven, full kitchen cabinets, 2 Toto toilets, couches, some lighting, bathroom tile, the list goes on : ) Have a vision and you can find it, it might take time but it will be out there. My beliefs for a successful Craigslist transaction are as follows:
1. Condensed searches. Know what you want and search appropriately. I tend to know what brand or specific item I want before I am searching. Also don't plan on people having it posted in the right category, or spelling for that matter.
2. Frequency, frequency, frequency! Search frequently and somewhat obsessively. Early bird gets the worm. The quickest you find the listing, the better odds of getting it. I have posted many things for sale and usually have my buyers response within the first hour (or minutes).
3. Quick response and make it simple. Sound serious, I put the item name & "I want it!" in my email title and offer a quick pickup with cash. Make it easy and convenient for the seller and let them know your not a flake.
4. In really good deals or something I have had to have (a matching table for instance), I have even been known to offer more cash then the asking in my title. Our kitchen cabinets were another instance. We found them (after a year of searching) and knew they were going to work. I knew they were priced cheap so I offered an extra $100 just to get my name at the top of the list, sorry other cabinet buyers but the seller said that was why he picked me : ) A couple of times people have just let me give them the asking price, even when I hand them extra cash.
5. In some other cases and something I have not been afraid to lose, I send a quick email offering them a lower price on the item if it doesn't sell. Sometimes that works as well, but you have to be willing to lose the deal.
So much more to come later, I started this for a few friends and never realized I would have so much to say. I need to go to sleep :)