Thursday, December 11, 2014

Saving Money

I'm all about saving money wherever I can. Who can't use a little extra money, right? Now I don't advocate buying things you don't need or will never use or won't use before it goes bad, just because it's a good deal and you can get it really cheap. But if it's something you already need to buy, why not save money on it?

Obviously the two big ways to save money are sales and coupons. The newspaper is great when it comes to both of those. I can scour the newspaper for what each store has on sale and clip coupons too.

But there are some other great ways to get coupons too! There are plenty of websites that offer printable coupons... coupons.com, smartsource.com, redplumb.com. I've gotten many coupons from these sites over the past few months.

I've also discovered some great smartphone apps to save some extra money as well! And boy have they saved me extra money! The first app is Checkout 51 (it's available in both the Google Play Store and the App Store). This app puts up roughly 25 items every week that you can earn money back on. New items go up Thursday mornings and are good for one week. So be sure to get your items in before next week Wednesday 11:59 pm! This app is simple to use... just look through their offers, click upload receipt after purchasing the items, snap a picture of your receipt (in sections if it's a long receipt), and hit finish. When you've purchased items matching their offers the money will be added to your account and once you get up to $20 in savings or higher you can request a check be mailed to you! There are different items every week so be sure to check it out!

The other app I use to save money is ibotta (also available in the Google Play Store and the App Store). Now this app isn't just for saving money on groceries... they've got everything from electronics to automotive, restaurants, and movie theaters on here! Click on the section your interested in (I use it mainly for groceries) and it will load which stores are available for offers. When it comes to the grocery side of it, most stores have the same offers. However, some stores will have exclusive rebates so watch for those. Ibotta will have you learn facts about the products, take quizzes, or watch a short video to unlock the offers. Be sure to read the info under the product because sometimes there is a size minimum needed to be purchased for the rebate. In the store and wonder if the offer matches? Simply click the scanner button on the top right corner of the screen while on the item, scan the bar code on the item, and ibotta will tell you if it matches! After purchasing your items, click redeem at the bottom of the app. Ibotta will have you verify your purchases by scanning the bar codes of each item (if you scanned it while shopping and it matched, no need to rescan!). After verifying your products, it's time to snap a pic of your receipt. In order to get your money back with ibotta you only have to get up to $10 in savings... you can get your money onto your paypal account, into your bank account, or in giftcards!
One of the many things I love about this app is that there are ways to earn extra money! When friends from Facebook or friends you invited to use the app join they are added to your team. Each month ibotta has different levels of bonuses that if you redeem x amount of offers and your team earns $x amount in offers, you'll get a bonus. They usually start at $0.50 for the first level bonus and go up from there! Also, when your friends join your team (if you invited them and they use your referral code-found under the teamwork tab and build team) you'll get a bonus when they redeem their first rebate!
There are also bonus offers from the companies or ibotta (just click on the bonuses tab under your profile). For example Zest soap currently has rebate offers on Zest body wash and Zest bar soap. If you redeem both rebates at Dollar General they'll give you an extra $0.50. But these bonus offers have an expiration date (as do the regular rebates) so watch out! During your first week of registering the app if you redeem your first rebate you'll get a $0.50 bonus from ibotta!

I know some of you might be thinking what's saving $0.50 going to do for me but it adds up! I started using ibotta in July this year and I've earned $46 in rebates and that doesn't include friend invite bonuses! So join my team and let's save together! When you register for ibotta and it asks for a referral code put in rdlx7w. Putting in this referral code will add you to my team so we can help each other save. The bigger your team, the easier it is to reach your monthly bonuses!

The great thing with both Checkout 51 and ibotta is that they don't care how much you spent on the item or if you used coupons! I have previously gotten a coupon from a local store for a free gallon of milk with purchase and I was able to receive a rebate from one of the apps for milk! I have even gotten Tabasco sauce for free recently (Walmart had it on sale for $1, I had a coupon from coupons.com fro $0.50 off, and Checkout 51 had a $0.75 offer). So in the end I made $0.25 to buy Tabaso!

Another great money savings app is the Walmart Savings Catcher. If you download the Walmart app it's on there. All you do is scan your Walmart receipt and they'll check competitors prices. If someone else has it advertised for less, you'll get the difference on a Walmart e-gift card! Yes this does force you to use that money at Walmart but it's not bad if you already shop there. Plus you don't have to go from store to store because they have something cheaper.

Here's a peek at ibotta.

Let's all try to save a little money, especially as we near Christmas!

Remember Jesus is the reason for the season!