Detroit Deal Diva

Posts Tagged ‘Frugality

In part one of the Rebate Rundown I covered the “why’s” of submitting rebates. This week  I will discuss the 5 Best Ways to Find Rebates.  I’m sure there are other ways to find rebates, but these are the Top 5 ways that I find rebates.

1. Frugal Blogs and Forums-My fellow frugal bloggers are a wealth of information when it comes to current rebates “Coupons Deals and More” has the most comprehensive list of available rebates that I have found. I have only found a couple of rebates that were not listed on this site.  This is usually my first stop when I am looking for a rebate for a particular  product.  Coupon forums are also a good place to find out about rebates  because they are full of like-minded people, knowledgable people who always on top of all things frugal.

2.  Sunday newspaper coupon inserts-Although coupons are the main interest in the Sunday paper  coupon inserts, there are more to the inserts than just coupons. They also contain rebate information, contests and sweepstakes information, recipes and an assortment of other information. It pays to look beyond the coupons.

3. Product packaging A lot of rebates are mentioned on the package of the products.  The package may not sate “rebate” explicitly, but statements such as “Try Me Free”  or “Money-Back Guaranteed” are essentially rebate offers.

4. Product Websites-If I want to know if a  product has a rebate available and I can’t find one on Coupons Deals and More, I check the product’s  website.  The rebate offer may be on the home page, but  if it doesn’t show up on the home page, it may be on the “Promotions” or “Special Offers” page.

5. Family and Friends-When your family and friends know that you are couponer and that you submit rebates, they will tell you about rebates and deals  they learn about even if they don’t use the information. Make your habits known and you will be surprised at how much information will find its way to you.

Although it didn’t make my Top 5 list, coupon.com  deserves an honorable mention. Recently the coupon site has been offering rebates right alongside the coupons.  You can print the rebate forms when you print coupons.  

These are the best ways that I have found for finding rebates if you have some additional ways to find rebates, I welcome your ideas and tips. 

Next on Rebate Rundown….”Fufilling the Rebate Requirements.”

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For the last couple of weeks, I had been kicking the idea around about doing some sort of series.   I wanted  to cover a subject that I  that I  felt confident I could provide some useful insight on. I had several topics in mind, but the one that I kept coming back to was rebates and rewards. One of  the ways that I  try to make shopping  pay for itself  is by submitting for rebates or  taking advantage of reward programs.   This is my inaugural post for my “Rebate Rundown” series. This series will include tips on finding rebates, making money from your rebates, plus much more. 

Let’s start at the beginning.  What is the difference between a rebate and a reward?  Simply put, a rebate is a  refund (either partial or full) for the purchase of goods or services.    A reward program offers you various items for purchasing goods or services.  Rebates are usually monetary in nature while a reward can include anything from coupons, to store credits, to various gifts and prizes.  Whatever you call it, I like getting something extra for spending my money.

I follow a basic criteria when deciding if I am going to submit for a rebate. One or all  must apply before I will make an effort to fulfill the rebate requirement (s).

  1. Is it a rebate for an item that I normally purchase?
  2. Can I fulfill the rebate requirement with nominal or no out-of-pocket (OOP) cost and turn a profit?
  3. It it a “Try Me Free”  offer. 

I always submit  for any available rebates on items  that  I normally purchase.  If you are going to spend the money anyway, why not get some of your money back.  That is just common sense.  For those of you that think submitting for rebates is a hassle, I will debunk that theory in a future ” Rundown”. I will say this though, by not requesting your rebate you are essentially giving your money away.  

Often you can combine a good sale with  manufacturer coupons, and store coupons/rewards to get products super cheap or for free.  When there is  also a rebate available,  you can actually make money.  Just recently Proctor and Gamble had rebate  that gave you back $20.00  when you purchased $50.00 worth of Olay  products.   Using the following deal  at Target I was able to make a $7.84 profit by submitting for this rebate:

  • purchased (9) Olay Regenerist Facial Cleansers for $5.99/ ea
  • used (9) $5.00/1 coupons from the P&G Year of Savings coupon booklet     
  • Total Cost=$53.91 + 3.25 in tax
  • Total OOP=$12.16
  • Total Rebate=$20.00
  • Profit=$7.84

Not only did I make a profit, but I actually love the product.  Drugstores  usually offer the best opportunities to make money from rebates.  Between their store coupons and  various reward programs (Extra Care Bucks at CVS), Register Rewards at Walgreen and Single Check Rebates/ Up Rewards at  Rite Aid) there are always opportunities to turn great deals  into money-making deals.

Finally, “Try Me Free” offers guarantee you all of your money back when you purchase a specific item.  I do not submit for all “Try Me Free” rebates because it still requires an upfront OOP cost and it is not always a prudent purchase.  If it is an item that I can actually use and/or  the upfront OOP cost is reasonably low then, I will definitely purchase the item.  Using a coupon with a  “Try Me Free” offer always makes the rebate a money maker.

Please be mindful that this is the criteria that I use. By no means is it all-inclusive. This is only meant to be a  guideline to assist you in deciding if it is worth it for you to submit for a particular rebate.  Getting part of your money or even all of your money back is great, but making a  a profit is always my ultimate goal when requesting a rebate.

Next time I’ll Rundown  “How to Find Rebates.” 

 

 

I had, what I thought, was a simple shopping  plan when I went to Target this past weekend. The plan was to have 2 transactions and  to reduce my out-of pocket cost on tracnsation #2 by using the gift cards earned from transaction #1.

The first transaction was six single pack Venus Embrace razors at $4.99 each.  There is a manufacturer coupon for $2/1 and a Target store coupon for $2.50/1 making each razor .49.  Target also has  a gift card deal to get a $5.00 GC when you buy (wyb)  three Venus Embrace razors.   This would have made for a $7.06 moneymaker (thanks totallytarget).  Sweet deal, right?   Wrong!!  Target’s raggedy registers would not scan my manufacturer coupons, the cashier (and manager) were dumbfounded  and my master plan went right out the door.  The drama that ensued caused  the whole deal to be scrapped and I went ahead with my second transaction. 

My favorite manager, Denise was not working  that day and I dare not shop there again unless I ensure that she is on duty.  I continued to have coupon issues throughout my second transaction, but eventually the torture was over.  So much for my coupon friendly store. I swear sometimes shopping with coupons feels like going to war. How sad is that? 

Oh well,  here is what I managed to wrangle out of the store. You can also check  out the video here.

  • (5) Huggie wipes 72 ct.-$1.99/ea
  • (3) Glade Sense and Sprays-$5.04/ea
    • used $3/1 (expired) and $3/1 Target Q (expired) 
  • (1) Glade Lasting Impressions-$6.49
    • used $3/1 (expired) and $3/1 Target Q (expired)
  • (2) pair of children’s socks-$1.00/ea
  • (3) Pillsbury Sweet Moments-$2.50/ea
    • used (2) $1.50/1 printable and (1) $1/1 8/8/10 SS and 9/12/10 GM
  • Tinker Bell Blu-Ray-DVD combo-$22.99
  • (1) Enfagrow infant formula $18.99
  • (2) Clean and Clear Surge refill pads-$3.84
    • used $3/1 8/1/10 SS
  • (1) Vaseline Lotion-$2.69/ea
  • Target Home towel bar$4.98
    • used $10/1 Target Q (adjusted down to $4.98)
  • (3) Shout travel size wipes-.97
    • Forgot to give coupons to cashier. I will be returning items on my next visit.

Total value=$115.55  Total OOP=$40.19   Total savings=65%

      

Okay, I know it’s a little late, but better late than never.  It is more than a notion trying to work full-time + overtime,  posts updates to the blog, take care of a busy 16 month old and shoot You tube videos….etc.  I know, I know, I am preaching to the choir.  LOL.  We are all busy little bees.  Anyway. This was my final shopping trip from last weekend.  It was okay not nearly as awesome as my SUPER MEGA TARGET HAUL from a couple of weeks ago.  Go here to check out that haul.  It was awesome!!!       

Before I breakdown my trip, let me just say that I have a real love/hate relationship with Target.  I love all of the great deals you can get. I love the fact that they have store coupons that can be stacked with manufacturer coupons and I LOVE the Target on Warren Rd. in Westland, MI.  

I HATE the fact that some of their cashiers have not been trained properly on the use of coupons, I HATE that their new computer systems cheats you out of part of your coupon savings. I HATE that they do not always honor their own coupon policy and I really hate the Target store on Ford Rd/Greenfield in Dearborn, MI. That store has proven to be the most coupon hating Target, I have visited.     

I know from some of the comments I’ve read on other blogs that I am not alone in my love/hae relationship with Target.  I believe that if you follow a few tips you can have a great shopping experience at Target.  Plus, I refuse to let a  few player-hating employees, stop me from saving money and getting deals.  I will post my tips on how to have an enjoyable shopping experience at Target.  Now on to my shopping trip.          

 Transaction #1      

  • (2) Hunt’s Ketchup – .84/ea
    • used $1/2 coupon from the August All You magazine 
    •  I did a separate transaction because I needed a separate receipt for the Conagra Rebate. Go here to print your rebate form.
  • Total cost=$1.68   Total coupons=$1.00  Total OOP= $ .68   Total savings=68%

  Transaction #2  

  • (2) Olay Regenerist Facial Wipes – $5.99/ea
  •  (1) Olay Regenerist Daily Facial Cleanser – $5.99
    • used (3) $5/1 coupons from the P&G Coupon Savings Booklet (no longer available) 
    •  Get the form for the new rebate in the 8/29/10 P&G Saver  or here.
    •  Once again I did a separate transaction because I am sending off for the another rebate. Go here to print the form,but hurry it expires on 9/17/10.
  •  Total cost=$19.05 (including tax)  Total coupons=$15.00 $  Total OOP=$4.05  Total Savings=79%

Transaction #3        

  • (2) Bounty Basic Paper Towel – .99/ea
    • used (2) $1.00 (adjusted down to .99) coupons from the P&G Coupon Savings Booklet (no longer available)
    •  Get the form for the new rebate in the 8/29/10 P&G Saver  or here.
  • (3) Aloe Vaseline Lotion -$2.99/ea
  • (3) Travel Sive Tide Detergent – $.97
    • used (3) $1/1 coupons  (adjusted down to .97)   8/29/10 P&G Saver
  • (4) Sauve sampoo – $.99/ea
  • (5) Travel size Degree for Women
    • used (4) .75/1    8/29/10 RP
  • (3) Friskies Party Mix – $1.34/ea
    • used (3) $1/1  8/22/10/SS  and here  
  • (6) Travel size Right Guard – .97/ea
    • used (3) $1.50/2  8/15/10 RP
  • (4) 2pk Sharpie Accent highlighters-$.75/ea
  • (2) Travel size Clean and Clear Morning Burst Cleansers- .97/ea
    • used (2) $1/1 (adjusted down to .97) 8/1/10 SS
  • NYC Lipshine-$1.72
    • used $1/1 August All You magazine
  • Pair of socks for my daughter  $1.00
    • no coupon used
    • used a $6.61 gift card from previous return   (see Target Mega Haul video here)
  • Total  cost $42.01  (including tax) Total coupons & GC=$37.09    Total OOP=$2.67   Total Savings 88% 

Note:  Try as I might I could not figure out the calculations based on the receipt.  I often have that problem with Target. I tried to be as accurate has I could.


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