Welcome to this week's edition of the Festival of Frugality.
Before I begin, I want to say that I received several entries that I felt were not appropriate for this carnival. Here are what the festival's guidelines say about posts to be considered for inclusion:
It must have something to do with frugal living, saving money, etc. The Festival is not at all trying to be exclusive, far from it, but it we’d like to keep it somewhat on the broad topic of frugality.
So, I didn't include posts on investing money, making more money, commentary on advertising, etc. I tried to be as broad as possible in my definition of "frugality" (as you'll see from some of the entries below), but some of the submissions simply did not fit the topic of frugality/saving money. Hence, they aren't included.
That said, I'm sticking with my usual method of hosting a carnival -- listing a summary of each piece with the author's reason for submitting the post to the carnival (for those that submitted one) and/or a bit of the post itself as a summary -- so you readers know what to expect before you get to the post.
With that said, here we go:
- Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for a Discount - Don’t be afraid to ask for a discount on a substitute if a store doesn’t have what you’re looking for. Many stores already do this as a matter of policy when dealing with sale items. But even if it’s not on sale, a sympathetic clerk will often throw you a bone if they don’t have exactly what you’re looking for.
- Now that is expensive! - People always talk about how expensive kids are. I never really thought kids were that expensive. We have been very frugal in raising our kids. We use cloth diapers. We breastfeed. We have either been given or bought second hand almost all of the larger baby items such as cribs, beds, swings and strollers. As the kids get older we shop thrift stores and use hand me downs for clothes. At Christmas and birthdays we include things they need on their wish list. We look for free or low cost entertainment. We have done some lessons, but we don't go crazy. The largest cost has been the "opportunity cost" of me staying home.
- Embrace The Cheapness! - How I embrace what others think of me instead of dwelling on their opinion.
- Frugal Tip - Free Entertainment Savers Guide from SBC - Since we dine out quite frequently we were on the lookout for some good deals on the web. We found this FREE deal for great coupons from the Entertainment Saver's Guide courtesy SBC. The guide covers most of the restaurants in US, is very detailed and usually comes at a price of $25. But by virtue of SBC's courtesy we are able to avail it online FREE.
- Garden Fresh - In this post, I talk about creative ways to save money by having a garden. It doesn't need to look good, it just needs to be functional.
- How to spend virtually nothing when you have a baby - I would like to share my story regarding expenses for infants. In our culture, we are led to believe that babies require a lot of things. There is no reason to "buy in" (pun intended) to this mentality.
- Make Your Next Car Rental Cheaper - Many tips on renting a car for less gathered from my bad experiences with rental car agencies.
- Ten Cent Double Cheeseburgers? - I know it’s not particularly healthy, but this tip certainly passes the Lazy Man and saving money test…
- Slay your energy vampires: Unplugging appliances saves money and cuts pollution - I love finding new ways to save energy, because it's one of those great areas where money and values work in tandem. This week I learned something I totally new to me (thanks to Ideal Bite) -- many household appliances are draining energy even when they're turned off!
- Saving Money When Making a Charitable Contribution - Charitable donations are tax deductible. If you usually make charitable contributions by cash or check, you may want to consider donating appreciated securities instead. It’s a great way to maximize you contribution while minimizing your out-of-pocket cost.
- Are You Really Saving? You May Be Wasting Instead! - Here is one place where it's possible to be too frugal. There, I said it; “Too Frugal”.
- Save money on pet meds with price matches - Saving money on pet meds by using a price match guarantee.
- Have Money to Burn? $10,000 for Fake Eyelashes - Weekly series on ridiculous ways to waste your money.
- Clements' Nine Tips for Investing in Happiness - Tips on how to be happier with less.
- A Nutrition Label Epiphany (L-O-N-G) - This has to do with avoiding spending money on foods that will eventually help to kill us, and how to find them.
- Know How Your Credit Card Charges You - There are many ways to choose a credit card. Be sure to pay attention to fees when doing so.
- Negotiate, haggle, bargain - with a little flinch - Unless you’re in a non-negotiable environment like a departmental store, you should always negotiate on everything you purchase so that you get the best value for your hard-earned money.
- Get Rewarded If You Shop for Clothes - You can get rewarded if you shop for clothes. There’s a nice little survey program that I know of that offers you nice rewards in return for a little information on the clothes you’ve purchased.
- Waiting on Media Purchases - Americans spend billions on buying media products. In the last couple of days, I wrote about half.com, where you can get DVD that were $20 for ridiculously low prices—we’re talking $2 or $3 dollars here. From the buyer’s standpoint, that’s a huge discount and worth celebrating.
- Ham It Up! - The moral of this story is to either avoid buying seasonal holiday items or else be prepared to go out and buy more after the event is over. You'll generally find a good deal, especially if the expiry date of the food items starts to get a bit closer.
Thanks for visiting the Festival of Frugality!