As the cost of everything goes up, we want to make our dollars stretch farther. Since retailers aren't cooperating, it is up to us to find ways to get the most out of our money. Here are some tips when shopping, whether on the internet, or in the store.
• Use sites like Pricegrabber.com or BizRate.com to compare prices of the same item at different online retailers.
• Clip coupons. Clip manufacturer coupons from the Sunday paper inserts, print them from online sources. Combine these with store coupons, and save tens of dollars each visit.
• Take advantage of social living coupon sites such as Groupon.com. These site often offer deals as much as 50% off the regular price.
• Buy local. Shop at local farmer's markets for organic produce. You won't be paying extra for the shipping costs.
• Stop paying for postage. Pay your bills online through your bank. Most offer this service free of charge.
• Mail in those rebates! Most people don't send in the rebate form, defeating the purpose of purchasing the item. Send it in as soon as you get home so you don't forget. They usually expire within a few weeks.
• Keep receipts. Returns are easier this way. Although many stores will honor returns without a receipt, you may only get the most recent sale price rather than the full price you paid.
• Shop seasonally. There are many items like appliances and home goods that go on sale the same time every year.
• Shop used. Attend flea markets, consignment shops, resale shops and book sales at your local library. You can find like-new clothing and household items