I absolutely love saving money. No, I don’t love money, but I love to save money whenever I can. Do you love getting a great deal on something? What if I told you that you could get an even greater deal if you thought differently? A lot of people don’t realize that there is a way to take the money you have and increase your buying power. Then, take those savings and invest them in yourself.
1. Ebates – Rebates without the hassle
I absolute LOVE Ebates. It makes the #1 spot because it is the best thing in the entire world. So if you haven’t heard of this then you need to go there right now and sign up. they have tons of online shops and each shop has a percentage of cash back that you will get. I got 15% cash back on JCPenny the other day. That sounds great, right? Well, I had a coupon for 40% off my purchase, I bought a Raise.com gift card valued at $100 for $93 (also got 1% cash back from Ebates on that) and used my credit card to earn 1.5% cash back on the gift card purchase. I don’t know what the final percentage of savings was, but it was a lot of savings! Download their mobile app for savings only available through the mobile app. Ebates has a great add-on to Google chrome that will let you know if you are on a website that has either a coupon or a cash back reward.
2. Give yourself a Raise
One of the easiest ways to save some money is to buy gift cards. You can save anywhere from 3% to 15% just by buying a gift card prior to making your online purchase. I love Raise, and have had nothing but great customer experiences with the company. And, if you sign up using my link here, then you will receive a $5 credit! See, I saved you $5 already! This does take you to a page that asks for your phone number so they can send you the link to download their app. I’m not sure why they do it that way, but you get $5 out of it. If you don’t want to use the phone app, head on over to Raise.com and sign up.
This site is similar to Ebates and offers both cash-back and coupons. I love using both of the websites to see who is offering the better deal. First-time users typically get some pretty good deals so check out their website for some great savings! They also have a plugin that will show you where you can save money online.
4. Rewards Credit Cards
Before you jump into signing up for a bunch of credit cards be very careful with these. These are like loaded guns and can get you in serious trouble. Yes, the 1.5% cash back sounds great, but the APR of 27.9% is what the credit card company is hoping that you will be paying them. So, now that I have my warning in place, I LOVE REWARDS! I have all of my credit cards set on autopay, I NEVER pay interest. If you don’t have the money, you don’t buy it. The greatest thing you can do with this is you can find credit cards that have really high rewards in specific categories and use those to pay for those categories. I would advise starting with a general high reward card like the 1.5% cash-back on everything Capital One card. Then looking at specialty cards based on how much you spend in those categories to save even more. Avoid credit cards with fees, unless you can see that your rewards will be more savings by paying the fee. This method saves me an average of 1.8% on everything I buy. That’s not a lot, but if you were to buy $20,000 worth of things in a year, that’s $360 back in your pocket.
5. Rewards Cards
I love getting rewards for things. So many places you go have free rewards cards and you don’t even know it. So ask the next time you visit your favorite restaurant or store. My wife asked at her favorite place to buy clothes and the lady pulled out a rewards card under the counter and handed it to her on the spot. She asked how long they have had rewards cards and they told her that they have had it for at least 5 years. The card gives her 20% off every 5th visit, imagine all of the money she could have saved if she had known about it before. Gas stations are a great way to rack up tiny savings. A lot of major gas stations will give you a card with anywhere from $0.03 – $0.05 / gallon on every fill-up. I don’t know how much gas you use, but we use 30 gallons of gas a week on average (that’s counting in vacation and travel). So if we were to save $0.03 on 30 gallons/week in 1 year, that’s $46.80 in savings per year. Not bad to get a $50 bill for just swiping an extra card.
I hope you found this article helpful and that you start compiling those savings. Start combining methods and save even more.