Daily Savings Tip: Read Reviews

If I had a nickel for every toy, toaster and hair dryer I bought that turned out to be a dud, I’d have a lot of nickels.

In my defense, I entered adulthood in the pre-internet era, when product research and reviews were harder to come by.  Back then most of us relied on brand reputation and a little luck.  But today we have no excuses.  Here are a few review tools to help make better buying decisions:

  • Angie’s List provides reviews and recommendations for local products and services. I have never personally used this service, but have some friends who swear by it.
  • Consumer Reports tests and rates everything from electronics to cars and just about everything in between.  I have personally subscribed to the online version of Consumer Reports for years, and would not be without it.
  • Amazon provides reviews from previous customers on dang near everything.  I even use it when shopping in various stores if I have a small appliance or electronics purchase I need to make.

What about you?  Do you have any favorite review sites you use before making purchases?

Daily Savings Tip: In-Store Coupons

Some of the best deals I’ve come across have been from unexpected in-store savings offers. It pays to keep your eyes peeled for high-value coupons found in the form of blinkies, peelies and hangtags (pictured below).

Blinkies – coupon machines attached to shelving
Peelies – attached to product – peel off to redeem
Hangtags – hang around the neck of product

These are often a much higher value than you’ll find in the Sunday paper. In fact, every so often I find peelies for full mail-in rebates, which means they’re totally FREE!

Daily Savings Tip: Reusable Shopping Bags

Reusable shopping bags not only save the environment, they can also save you money. If you’re a frequent Whole Foods or Target shopper, you’ll earn a $0.05 – $0.10 credit per bag each time you shop. For my large family, that usually adds up to around $0.50 credit per week or $26 per year. Now I realize that’s not exactly swimming pools and movie stars money, but in this economy, it is important for me to scrape together as much savings as possible, and this one is absolutely painless.

You can often find reusable bags priced at $1 each, but you’ll occasionally find them on sale for $0.33 – $0.50 each. If you keep your eyes peeled, you’ll even find them for free during certain promotional events.

Want more easy ways to save?  Scroll through HERE for more Daily Savings Tips.  And be sure to subscribe to the MBH daily email alerts so you never miss a thing.

Daily Savings Tip: Save on Haircuts

Home haircuts have saved our family a ton of money. For as little as $11 you can pick up a complete Home Hair Cut Kit containing instructions and everything you need to get started. There is a little trial and error involved, so the summer is the perfect time to get started.  If you’re a beginner, you can find a tutorial HERE.

If you’re not quite ready to do it yourself, here are some other ways to save:

  1. Head over HERE to find a beauty school near you and take advantage of discounted rates.
  2. Sign up for email alerts from local hair salons so you are on the list to receive any coupons and discount available.  Fantastic Sam’s and Supercuts will send out occasional coupons.
  3. Did you know you can print cash register receipt coupons online?  Head over to RTUI and insert your zip code to see what is available in your area.
  4. Be sure to check Groupon and Living Social for discounted salon vouchers.
  5. Subscribe to your local newspaper, and pick up any free local magazines available near store and restaurant entrances which occasionally contain salon coupons.

Daily Savings Tip: Request Coupons

Want to get a steady flow of high value coupons for your favorite products? Spend a few minutes each week sending emails to manufacturers. Companies love to get feedback from their customers. The more they know about us, the more they understand how to market their products to fit our needs. They also realize how important brand loyalty is to their bottom line, so they’re usually happy to send out coupons when asked. Often they’ll send high value or FREE coupons, or coupons you won’t typically find in the Sunday inserts. Here’s what I got awhile back from one company.

Here are a few contact links to get you started.