Tip #1: Stop Going to the Mall
Before kids, I used to go to the mall frequently just to see what was in the stores. I'd always buy something.
My strategy is simple: If I don't go to the mall, I don't spend money.
The same goes for the outlet center that opened just miles from my house. It's been open 5 years, I've gone once. If I go to the mall or the outlets, I have a specific purpose and, more importantly, a specific budget.
Tip #2: Stick to a List
Have you ever ventured into Target for one item and ended up with a full cart and a $200 receipt? It's easy to do and it's happened to me many times. This video explains the phenomenon perfectly!
33 Thoughts Every Woman Has In Target
Posted by BuzzFeed Video on Thursday, December 11, 2014
So I make a list and do my best to stick to it.
Tip #3: Getting Paid to Shop Online, really!
I do most of my shopping online. It is easier than dragging my kids all around town. A few years ago, I discovered a site called Ebates. It actually pays you back for shopping online! Whenever you shop online, first visit Ebates. Simply click on the store you want to shop and Ebates redirects you to the store. Viola! You get a percentage back on your purchase. Percentages start at 1% and can go as high as 10%. Yep. You get money back for buying items you were already going to buy. There are no gimmicks or extra things to do (well, you do have to create an account!). Go to Ebates first, shop, and every quarter they'll mail you a check or send it via PayPal. It's that easy. If you'd like to sign up, you can use my referral link or just go to Ebates to sign up.
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