How Smart Shopping Can Improve Your Personal FinancesPosted at by ifydcat on category Personal Finance
Times are tough, and you’re certainly not alone if you’re looking for ways to trim your expenses wherever possible. For many people, finding additional income is not feasible, so the personal balance sheet has to be improved by cutting down on the amount of money going out. You don’t need to give up every non-essential purchase in the future to save money, though! Here are a few ways to spend less by shopping smarter.
For starters, you should get more savvy about the way you handle major purchases. For major goods and services, you’ll often be presented with financing options by the retailer. Inspect these offers carefully before deciding to reject or use them. Sometimes a finance plan can allow you to spread out the cost of your purchase over an extended period of time, which can give you a great deal of financial breathing room. Be certain that you can meet the obligations of the plan for its entire duration!
You can cut down on the cost of some large purchases by eschewing the extended warranty or service plan that many retailers offer. In contrast to financing plans, the odds of these kinds of offers paying off are extremely slim. Do not be pressured into them by sales people.
You may find it instructive to compare the extended warranty from a retailer with a product’s manufacturer’s warranty. In most cases you’ll see that the extended warranty offers minimal coverage beyond the manufacturer’s warranty that is included in the price of the product. Even in cases where the two levels of coverage differ, ask yourself how likely it really is that you will need to make use of the expensive service plan.
Smart shopping can also help you save money on the services you purchase month-by-month. When you buy insurance or open a credit card account, you spend a little time comparison shopping in order to secure the best deal, don’t you? What you should keep in mind is that the market for these services changes constantly, and deals that are significantly better than your current arrangements may become available. You should review your service deals every six months or so to ensure that you’re still getting competitive rates. There is one significant caveat to this kind of bargain-hunting, though: Company loyalty can have benefits of its own.
If you do find a better deal on insurance, credit, or any other service, don’t switch horses immediately. You should alway call your current service provider first. Customer retention is very important to most service companies, and they will not want to see you go. If you explain that you’ve found a more attractive offer for equivalent service, you may find that your current company is willing to match it. This is the real value of company loyalty; the longer you have been with a service company, the more inclined they will be to cut you a deal.
When you want to cut down on your expenses, remember that you have options besides plain old penny-pinching. Using the ideas presented here to refine your shopping skills can cut down on your budget without eliminating purchases that you’re really looking forward to. If you remember to shop smart, you’ll be able to shop a lot more often.
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