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Archive for the ‘savings’ Category

3 ways to be frugal in 2012

Being frugal this year can be simple – all you have to do is follow the top tips below on how to lead a frugal lifestyle that you can be happy with for the rest of your life.  No fax loans online is another way you can be good with money this year.  Our other frugal tips include:

1.  Buy generic food brands

While you may see Del Monte in the stores, it doesn’t mean that Del Monte juices are any better than supermarket brands. If you are looking to improve your frugality, you should start with food. Generic food brands especially when it comes to juices and water can give you the chance to make budget savings which allows you to stretch your cash further.

2.  Don’t shop at expensive clothes stores

Shopping at expensive clothes stores might be tempting because after all, we all want to look glossy and beautiful, but the price doesn’t justify the movements. In this regard, it’s important to go to pound shops and thrift stores where you can buy second hand clothes that look gorgeous but will not break the bank either. The upside to being budget with your clothes is you also save a lot of money in the long run on clothes that you can spend on other passion projects. Loans for bad credit are used by some people who need to buy clothing without breaking the bank.

3.  Look for energy savings

Most of us know that our finances could be sorted out if we would only just find the best energy savings for our gas, electricity and utility bills. Good ways of cutting down your energy bills is by using less energy and picking environmentally friendly ways. Instead of turning the heating up when it is cold, ensure that you have spare blankets and sheets that you can use in order to make savings on the energy bills that you need to cut down on. By using frugal techniques, you keep more money in your pocket.

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There is no question that buying a gift for a man can be difficult. Whether it’s a significant other, a father, or other family member, there are times when you just never know what they really want. Often, men tend to internalize feelings and desires, so you may have to work harder to come up with quality gift ideas. However, there’s no reason to let this difficulty cause you to pull your hair out or waste money when buying a gift for a man.

1. Ask Him What He Wants
The best approach is to just ask what he wants. I don’t mean ask him a few days before his birthday – rather, ask him questions several months before when you are out window shopping or doing anything else together. Often, he’ll drop clues that you can use at a later date. If you buy him something he doesn’t need, he may not return it for fear of offending you, but he also won’t use it.

2. Plan and Research
Last-minute gift shopping is a great way to waste money. If possible, you should have a pretty good idea what you’re going to get him at least a month or so before his birthday or Christmas. Use this time to watch out for deals, both in retail flyers and on the Internet.

Signing up for a daily deal website is another great idea. These sites send their deals to your email inbox on a daily basis. Take a look at what they have to offer, and you just might find something truly unique for the man in your life.

3. Be Practical
Most guys will greatly appreciate something that doesn’t cost a lot if it’s something they’ll use on a day-to-day basis. You don’t have to break the bank on a luxury item, such as a smart phone or flat-screen TV – many guys are not very materialistic, and value practicality.

4. Give a Homemade Gift
If you think your guy has everything he needs in life, consider preparing a homemade gift. A gift basket packed with some of his favorite foods, a funny card, and a few other treats is always a good idea. Many items may be able to be found at your local dollar store.

5. Consider a Gift Card
If you just can’t figure out exactly what he wants, consider giving a gift card. That way, you know he can choose something he really wants. There are a variety of websites where you can get gift cards at a discount – just be sure to purchase one with no fees and no expiration date.

6. Give Your Time
If you want to give a gift that costs no money at all, consider giving the gift of time. You can offer to wash his car for the next three months, do the grocery shopping, clean the house, or any other chore he performs on a regular basis. If he leads a fast-paced lifestyle, this could be one of the best gifts of all.

Final Thoughts

It’s important that you don’t over-complicate the process. Many men are really just looking for something simple or practical that will make their lives easier. And, of course, you can never go wrong with clothes. Women tend to have a much better fashion sense than guys, so consider choosing out something that will look good on him. And if he’s the frugal type, consider upgrading a facet of his life where’s he’s too cheap to spend money, such as a nice shaving kit or an updated cell phone.

What ways can you think of to save money when buying gifts for a man? What great gift ideas would you suggest?

by ALMOST FRUGAL

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Shopping online can save you a lot of money if you’re smart when going about it. Done correctly, you can get better bargains than in stores and you save yourself the cost of traveling around from shop to shop. To really save when shopping online you need to know the right tricks for saving the most amount of money.

Here’s a look at five ways to save when doing your shopping on the Internet:

  1. Shop around. The single biggest advantage that Internet shopping offers to you in comparison with in-store shopping is that it gives you access to a much wider variety of products and brands. Take advantage of that by shopping around and comparing prices on the items that you want to purchase. This is particularly great when shopping for big-ticket items but should also be done when shopping for smaller items that you buy frequently. If you know where to get the best deal online then you’re going to save the most money. Be sure to check out online auctions (such as eBay) as well as overstock stores (such as Overstock.com) and to compare prices there with the sales at other online storefronts.
  1. Use discount codes. You can find coupons at this site coupon.answers.com There are discount codes available for almost any product that you could possibly want to buy online. These promotional codes are free for you to use. Since there’s no cost to using them and they serve the singular purpose of saving you money there’s really no reason not to use them. Before making any online purchase, search through the Internet to see if there’s a promo code that you can enter to reduce your total shopping cost. You can go to a site like ;Promotional Codes or you can simply Google the discount code that you’re seeking (such as “Walgreens discount code”).
  1. Get free shipping. You can further save when shopping online by making sure that you don’t pay through the nose for shipping and handling fees. These fees can add a big chunk of change to the price that you’re paying if you’re not careful which reduces the benefits of shopping online. However, you can almost always find free shipping offers if you look around. Check for deals and look for free shipping vouchers online. All major coupon code sites have them and there are certain sites (such as www.freeshipping.org) that specialize in them. If that fails, contact the merchant; many big box stores (such as Walmart and Best Buy) will ship to a store close to you for no charge so that you can save on this expense.
  1. Be a reseller. You can save money when shopping online by making smart purchases that you can re-sell later to get some of your money back. One way to do this is to look for great deals on bulk items that you need anyway. You get the item that you need and can resell the excess. Alternatively, resell items on the same site that you bought them from when you don’t need them anymore. For example, resell books on Amazon.com that you bought there after you’re done reading them or re-auction items that you yourself got off of eBay.
  1. Use rent or barter sites. You might not even have to pay full price to get items that you want from online stores. There are many options to swap items or to rent them at low or no cost. Using the example of books, you could just avoid buying them from Amazon.com altogether and use a site like Paperback Swaps to get the same books for free. Alternatively, you may consider renting items that you don’t need to purchase. Zilok is an example of a website that will link you with local people who have the items that you need and which you can then rent from them to keep your costs down. You can also rent out your own items for cash on these sites.

When shopping online, you’ll also want to be sure to follow the same smart shopping rules that you use when shopping in the real world. Avoid impulse buying. Don’t shop online when you’re feeling emotional or tired. Ask yourself if you really need what you’re buying. And then use some of these other tips to further enhance the savings that are available to you when shopping on the Internet.

Guest post by Kathryn Vercillo. Kathryn is a writer for Promotionalcodes.org.uk which gives away free discount codes

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