Saving money is at the top of many people’s New Year’s Resolutions this year. The economy is still struggling, we
may have just spent more than we should have on gifts for the holidays, and we’re looking to wipe the slate clean and start meeting some of our financial goals.
There are lots of ways to cut expenses and start to take more control of your finances, some of which I’ve shared with you under the tab above (Money Smart Tips). Here’s another money saving tip to add to the collection.
While I was browsing on-line today, something hit me about spending money that you need to know in order to be saving money.
Stores use tricks that make you think you are saving money, but in reality you may be spending more.
Ok, tricks may be a little harsh.
Buyers have some ingrained assumptions that hinder our ability to save money. For example:
If I buy more, then it costs less per item. Thinking cereal, bandaids, paper towels, etc.
Or, switched around:
If I buy in bulk, I am saving money.
Although it makes logical sense that buying in bulk should result in saving money (due to less packaging and shipping costs among other reasons), it’s not always the case. I was just on Swagbucks looking to redeem my 2,600 bucks, and was looking at the Amazon gift cards.
For 450 SB I can get a $5 gift card, 3,150 SB is equal to $25 gift card, and 5,900 for a $50 gift card. They weren’t all together until I searched specifically for Amazon gift cards, so it wasn’t apparent at first that buying in bulk was not saving money.
My first reaction was disappointment that I didn’t have enough points for the $25 gift card, but then I took a second look:
2,600 / 450 = 5.8 meaning I can buy five $5 gift cards (5x$5 = $25) and still have swagbucks left over to buy some other small trinket. The $50 gift card is the same way. I could buy ten $5 gift cards for only 4,500 SB versus the 5,900 SB asked if you buy in bulk.
Don’t get me wrong, I think Swagbucks is a fabulous way to earn some free items and will continue to use their tool bar to rack up my bucks. I just used them to illustrate the point that you should always do the math to make sure the “deal” is saving money.