Build Your Credit Without a Credit Card

How to Build Your Credit Without a Credit Card

Build Your Credit Without a Credit Card

Photo credit: Flickr

Even if you choose to remain debt free, having a good credit score should still be a priority. One reason it should be important is because many utility and insurance companies look at your credit score to determine what you'll pay for insurance.

Are you searching for a job? Not all, but some employers will use credit reports upon screening job applicants, so having a good credit history could improve your chances of getting the job you really want.

If you ever do decide to get a loan, you don't want to be stuck with high interest rates. The better your credit the lower your interest rates will be on future secured and unsecured loans. Having a lower interest rate helps you pay off the debt much easier and quicker than a loan with higher rates.

What to Do Before You Start to Build Your Credit Without a Credit Card

The very first thing you should do is view your credit report for any inaccurate information. If something isn't correct, following the instructions on the report for sending in a dispute.

So, how do you get your credit report and what will it cost you? By law you are entitled to one free report from each of the three major credit bureaus: TransUnion, Experian and Equifax. Go to annualcreditreport.com to send your request to all three aforementioned bureaus.

Three Great Ways You Can Build Your Credit Without a Credit Card

1. Get a credit builder loan (a.k.a. secured personal loans, fresh start loans or starting over loans).

With a credit builder loan, you don't receive the money upfront as you would with a normal loan. What usually happens is the lender will agree to loan you $1,000 or less, but rather than giving you the money, they put it into a special account and hold it until you pay it off. You will agree on a minimum monthly amount to pay. Then once you've paid off the loan, the lender will release the loan amount -- and in most cases -- the interest it drew. Then you'll be free to spend it on whatever you like. Just make sure you make the monthly payments on time, because this is what's going to build your credit.

Financial institutes that usually offer credit builder loans are community banks and credit unions. If you're unable to find a bank or credit union in your local area that offers these type loans, there are online lenders such as Self Lender. Before using an online lender, do your homework by reading reviews about the company and read all the fine print in regards to the loan you plan on applying for.

2. Take out a secure loan against your CD or savings account.

If you want to build your credit but need money right away for an emergency situation or etc. and you have a CD or savings account, ask the financial institute that your account is with for secure loan. Let them know you want to use your CD or savings account as the collateral.

If you don't need the money for anything and you're just trying to raise your credit score, the best way to pay back the loan is to put the money you borrowed into a new checking account that you can open with a different financial institute, and ONLY use that money to pay off the secured loan. You'll better build your credit by making more than the minimum monthly payment for at least a few months before you pay in full.

Recommendations to Help You Save
CIT Bank CDs provide a safe, secure way to grow your savings. Choose from a selection of CD rates and terms to help you stay on target for your savings goals. Open an account today.

Open a Premier High Yield Savings account and get a 1.55% APY. See site for full terms and conditions on this offer.

Open a CIT Bank Money Market account and get a 1.85% APY. See site for full terms and conditions on this offer.

3. Ask your utility companies to report your account activity to TransUnion, Experian and Equifax.

Although utility companies don't normally report account activity, some will if you ask them to, so it doesn't hurt to ask. As long as you pay your electric, water and other bills on time, and the utility companies you pay your bills to agree to report your activity, this could also improve your credit score. You must do your very best, though, to continue making timely payments or you'll hurt your credit rather than help it.

What to Do After You Begin to Build Your Credit Without a Credit Card

Once you start working on obtaining good credit using one or more of my suggestions, you may want to keep track of how well you're doing. By signing up for a free Credit Sesame account, you'll be able to keep an eye on your credit score. The higher your score, the better!

Credit Sesame is totally free! I've been with them for almost a year now, and I can tell you for certain that unlike some other companies out there, this is not a free trial where you have to sign up and cancel before you're charged a fee. It is totally free, and they won't ask you for your credit or debit card information. Again, it is 100% free, so go ahead and sign up today to see your current credit score and other information that will help you build your credit.

Have you discovered a way that I haven't mentioned to build your credit without a credit card? If you have, please comment to share your credit-building story with others. Or if you want to share everything about your story (how much it helped, what you did, tips, etc.), contact me and I may write about it and publish it here at Living Frugally.

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Eliminating Credit Card Debt

Eliminating Credit Card Debt: It’s Not as Difficult as You Think

Eliminating Credit Card Debt

The sad truth is many of us get a credit card just to build our credit history, but what we fail to recognize is there are ways to establish a good credit history without having a credit card.

Regardless of why you got the card or cards, you're now stressing over the credit card debt you've accumulated, because at this point you're thinking you're never going to be able to eliminate your credit card debt.

It's alright, my friend. Just take a deep breath and relax, because I'm here to assure you that eliminating credit card debt is achievable. Yes, it will take time, but if you follow my advice, your persistence will result in freedom from the credit card debt.

Eliminating Credit Card Debt Without Consolidating

Try to work it into your monthly household budget to pay more than the minimum amount due. When you choose to pay more than the minimum monthly amount, you'll pay your card off sooner, and the most important reason to do this is you'll pay less in interest rates. To give you an example, according to Bankrate's credit card payoff calculator, if you have a credit card with a $1,000 balance, an interest rate of 20% and a minimum monthly payment of $25.00, it will take you 67 months to pay off the card if you only pay the minimum of $25.00. Furthermore, once the card is paid off in that amount of time, you will have paid a total of $661.00 in interest. However, if you pay $50.00 a month instead of the minimum, you'll pay the card off in 25 months and only pay $226.00 in interest, a savings of $435.00.

Begin by paying off the credit cards with the lowest balance first. Many may disagree and argue that paying off credit cards with the highest interest rate first is the way to go, but in my own personal experience, paying off the cards with the lowest balance worked best for my husband and me. What this did was get those debts out of the way, and then we were able to budget in a higher monthly payment to pay off the cards with a higher interest rate much quicker.

Pay off the entire credit card balance or a big portion of it with your tax return money. Again, choose to pay off the cards with the lowest balances first. This way you're paying off more than just one card, which again, leaves you more money to work with to tackle the cards with higher interest rates.

Transfer your credit card debts to a card with lower rates. Some credit card companies offer promotions of no interest charges to new customers who transfer their credit card debt.

Eliminating Credit Card Debt Totaling $10,000 or More

Sometimes -- especially if you have credit card debt of $10,000 or more -- you may need help paying off the debt. Maybe you're having some financial hardships that is making it tough for you to work your credit card payments into your monthly budget and/or your behind on payments. In a lot of these cases, people find it's easier to combine their debt and just make one monthly payment.

If you think combining your debt and making one monthly payment is the best option for you right now, National Debt Relief may be able to help you. If your credit card debt is less than $10,000 or you live in Connecticut, Georgia, Kansas, Maine, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Oregon, Vermont or West Virginia, unfortunately, National Debt Relief won't be able to help you.

If you have more than $10,000 in credit card debt, you live in a state that I didn't mention above and you're serious about getting help, you can call National Debt Relief at this number to see if they can help you: 866-258-9371. Maybe you want to learn more about them and what they can do before you call. No problem, just head over to the National Debt Relief website.

Before committing to anything with National Debt Relief, I urge you to read all the fine print in anything they send you and ask questions about anything you don't understand or want to know more about to ensure you're making the best decision. A few questions you should ask if you're approved for help are as follows (feel free to write them down): What is the total amount I'll be paying off, including your fee for helping me? What are your interest rates? How long will it take me to pay the debt off doing it this way?

What to Do After Eliminating Your Credit Card Debt

Once you've paid off your credit card debt, my best advice to you would be to cancel and shred ALL your credit cards. You'll do much better by putting money into a savings account for emergencies and building your credit through other means rather than having a credit card on hand.

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As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be e-mailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter.

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Frugal Cooking Tips

Frugal Cooking Tips to Help Stretch Your Grocery Budget

Frugal Cooking Tips

Wouldn't it be nice to pay less for your groceries? These 12 frugal cooking tips that I'm sharing with you today will help you stretch your grocery budget. Some require a little extra time and work, but the savings makes it all worth the effort.

Let's begin, shall we?

Frugal cooking tip #1: Make your own buttermilk.

Milk Vinegar and Buttermilk
Add a tablespoon of vinegar to 1 cup of milk. Let the the mixture set for five minutes before adding it to your recipe.

Frugal cooking tip #2: Don't throw away stale bread and heels.

Frugal Cooking Tips - Breadcrumbs
If your stale bread and the heels doesn't have mold on it, tear it up in pieces, put it in your food processor and pulse to make breadcrumbs for later use in a meatloaf or other recipes that call for breadcrumbs. If the stale bread and heels are still a bit soft and not all the way dried out, place the slices in a toaster or toaster oven and toast until dry. Be sure to let the bread cool before putting it in the processor.

Put your homemade breadcrumbs in a resealable bag, glass jar or storage container, label it with the date, and then store them in a cool, dry place for up to 6 months.

Frugal cooking tip #3: Make your own chicken broth.

Frugal Cooking Tip - Make Own Chicken Broth

Photo credit: Flickr/Warren Layton

Make your own chicken broth from unused chicken skin, bones and other chicken waste. For instance, any time you cut up a whole chicken, use the waste to make chicken broth. Once the broth is finished, you can freeze it for later use, so making this ahead saves time and money. 😉

Another frugal way to make broth is with bouillon cubes. Just add a beef or chicken bouillon cube to water. Bouillon cubes are a whole lot cheaper than buying the boxed or canned broths.

Frugal cooking tip #4: Make your own pasta.

Frugal Cooking Tips - Dough
Homemade pasta (macaroni, spaghetti, lasagna, etc.) costs less and tastes better than store bought. It's easier to make pasta if you have a stand mixer with a multipurpose attachment hub, such as the KitchenAid mixer. If you have this mixer, as well as the pasta maker attachment, making pasta from scratch is much easier and less time consuming.

If you don't have one of those fancy mixers or the pasta attachments and can't splurge for any of it at this time, the following video teaches you how to make a variety of different pastas by hand.

You can make your pasta ahead of time and freeze it. Just lay the pasta out on a baking sheet and place it in the freezer. After it's frozen, transfer it to freezer bags or a freezer safe container. It should keep in the freezer for a couple months. To cook it from the freezer, add it to a pot of boiling water that you've salted.

Frugal cooking tip #5: Save your cooking oil.

Frugal Cooking Tips - Reuse Cooking Oil
Save cooking oil to re-use it, but keep in mind you don't want to fry chicken in oil that you fried fish in, so be sure you label the glass jars or containers you save the oils in (e.g. chicken oil, fish oil, etc.).

If you need some additional advice on how to preserve cooking oil, check out the video below from Debbie's Back Porch.

Frugal cooking tip #6: Use bacon grease instead of oil.

Frugal Cooking Tips - Bacon Grease
Speaking of cooking oil, rather than buying cooking oil, use bacon grease instead. It definitely adds flavor!

Frugal cooking tip #7: Make your own chicken strips and nuggets.

Frugal Cooking Tip - Homemade Chicken Strips
Three boneless, skinless chicken breasts makes approximately 12 chicken strips. If you're in the mood for nuggets instead, the same amount of chicken breasts yields approximately 48 nuggets.

Frugal cooking tip #8: Use beans and rice as a filler.

Frugal Cooking Tips - Beans and Rice
Both are inexpensive and healthy. Whether you're just feeding your family or you plan to prepare a meal for guests, beans and rice will stretch your grocery budget and recipes.

Frugal cooking tip #9: Make your own frozen meals.

DIY Frozen Meals

Photo credit: Flickr/Megan Mills

Rather than buying those pricey frozen meals, make your own. It does take a little time to make meals ahead of time then freeze them, but it's well worth it for the savings. Another benefit is DIY freezer meals are quicker to cook, which leads to eating out less.

Pinterest has tons of frugal freezer meal recipes to choose from.

Frugal cooking tip #10: Grow your own produce and herbs.

Frugal Cooking Tips - Produce
Growing your own produce and fresh herbs will take a little extra time and work, but if you can do it, it helps quite a bit when it comes to stretching your grocery budget.

Unless you happen to have a greenhouse, you won't be able to grow produce year-round, but that's ok. Just make sure you grow extra to can and/or freeze to get you through the winter. You can even make your own pasta sauce, tomato sauce and jams from the produce you grow.

Frugal cooking tip #11: Keep an updated price list.

Frugal Meal Planning
When I do my frugal meal planning, I refer to a price list that I keep updated. My price list has the products I buy frequently along with the prices from my local Kroger.

After doing a price comparison to determine which grocery store was cheapest in my area, Kroger was the winner, so I created a price list of all the products I buy the most. By referring to my price list, I know what's truly on sale at that time, as well as how much I'll be spending. This price list helps me stay within my frugal grocery budget.

Frugal cooking tip #12: Make your own ground beef.

Frugal Cooking Tips - Grind Meat
A food grinder is a must-have money-saving product, so if you don't have one, get one today, or just as soon as your budget allows. Then use your food grinder to make your own ground beef from chuck roasts, chuck steaks, round steak, sirloin tip steaks and other beef that you find on sale.

When choosing the beef for grinding into ground beef, select cuts with some fat. Leaner cuts of beef with hardly any fat won't work well, so don't choose those.

What frugal cooking tips can you add to this list that helps you stretch your grocery budget? Leave a comment to share.

Subscribe to the Living Frugally Newsletter for Updates & More!

Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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Frugal Grocery Budget Advice

Frugal Grocery Budget: How I Reduced My Monthly Grocery Bill by Over $300

Frugal Grocery Budget Advice

Back when there were seven of us in the house, our grocery bill -- as you can imagine -- was pretty high. I would use coupons and create my weekly menu from that week's sales. Although that helped keep the cost down, I still spent an average of $800.00 a month on groceries.

Something had to give, so I began looking at more ways to reduce my monthly grocery bill.

Adding Meat Bundles to a Frugal Grocery Budget Equals Big Savings

I kept hearing how buying meat by the bulk could save families quite a bit of money, so when I started looking for ways to reduce our family's grocery bill, this was the first thing I looked into.

I contacted local grocery stores to see if they sold meat by the bulk, and if they did, I asked their prices and wrote them down. Unfortunately, in my area, there were only a few places that sold their meat in bundles, but after comparing prices with the few places I had to choose from, the winner was Sam's IGA, which is about 25 miles from my home. Sam's IGA is an additional 12 miles from where I usually grocery shop, but the savings makes it well worth the few extra miles.

In addition to the savings, the quality of IGA's meat is much better than my local Kroger's meat. For instance, I hate buying my chicken for fried chicken at Kroger, because the breasts are so big! However, IGA's chicken breasts are the normal size that I remember seeing as a kid growing up.

Planning Is Necessary for Any Frugal Grocery Budget

Every week -- usually the evening before I go grocery shopping -- I write out a menu for the week. I create my menu based on what I already have in my pantry and deep freeze, what's on sale and what I have coupons for.

As you're writing out your menu, consider using leftovers from the previous nights' suppers for lunches. This helps you save even more money when your menu includes three daily meals and snacks for a large family.

To be totally honest with you, I don't use near as many coupons as you may, because in my area, I've discovered that even with most coupons, I can get the store brand products cheaper without the coupon, and that includes coupons I have for things that are on sale.

I do, however, use some coupons to save on the store brand products. Since I have a Kroger Plus card and free online Kroger account, Kroger tracks what I buy most, and based on my purchase history with them, they're always sending me coupons by snail mail and adding digital coupons to my online account. All I have to do to get the digital coupons is login to my account and load the coupons I want to my Kroger card. Because I buy mostly store brand products, the majority of the coupons Kroger offers me are for the store brands I buy most. It's rare to get coupons for generic brands, but Kroger offers them, and I love this!

As you're planning your menu, brainstorm to see what you could fix with the things you have in your pantry and freezer, what's on sale as well as the products you have coupons for. Personally, I love using Recipe Land when planning the menu for my frugal grocery budget. There I can enter the ingredients I want to use, and then it gives me recipes that use those ingredients. I can even find recipes that use venison, squirrel and rabbit!

Create your grocery list from your menu. Check your pantry, fridge and freezer for ingredients that you already have, and mark those off your grocery list.

Another thing to keep in mind as your writing out your menu is rice, beans, pasta, turkey and pork are usually always cheap, which makes them great for frugal grocery budgets. The internet is filled with budget-friendly recipes that use these ingredients. Also, once again, you can use Recipe Land to look for recipes by ingredients.

Using Rebate Apps Puts Cash Back in Your Pocket

As with coupons, I don't use the cashback rebate apps often since I mostly buy generic brands, but if you buy any name brand products, these apps help you save money, and in some cases you can end up with nearly-free or free products by combining discounts with other coupons. You won't save instantly at checkout, though. Instead, once you reach the minimum amount, the company gives you cash back.

The good thing about a lot of these cashback rebate apps is you can buy the product from any store. Also, some of them do occasionally have rebate offers for generic brands. The app that I use regularly has a good selection of offers for generic brands, and it is Ibotta ($20.00 minimum to cash out). If you sign up for Ibotta through my link, you will receive a $10.00 welcome bonus.

Cooking From Scratch & Canning Helps You Maintain Your Frugal Grocery Budget

It's true, canning and making things from scratch does take more time, but the money you'll save by doing this extra work really does make it all worth it. Not to mention homemade food is healthier than most prepacked foods.

Now that I've shared with you what I did to create the frugal grocery budget that saved me over $300.00, I'd love to hear any additional tips you may have for saving money in the grocery store. Tips I've not mentioned, of course. In fact, if I really like your tip(s), I just may update this article and include what you share. And I will be sure to give you credit for anything you share, which would include a "follow" link to a money-saving website or blog that you have, so when you comment with your tip(s) be sure to include the URL to your site or blog just in case.


Stay within your frugal grocery buget with Checkout 51 Offers

Frugal  Grocery Budget - Saving Star Rebates

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Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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Must-Have Money-Saving Products Under $100

Must-Have Money-Saving Products Under $100

Must-Have Money-Saving Products Under $100
I hardly ever buy anything for myself, but when I do, most of the things I splurge on are money-saving products. Anything that will save me money in one way or another excites me.

The following is a list of 23 money-saving products that you can get for less than $100.00. I have many of these products in my own home, and they've all been worth the small investment.

If you want to get any of these products right away, just click on the links to buy them from Walmart's website (all links open in a new window/tab). If you're not in a hurry, want a bargain price and don't mind that it's not new, you can look for the money-saving product(s) at local yard sales, thrift stores and Facebook Marketplace.

Money-Saving Products for the Kitchen

1. Water Filter System for Faucet

Money-Saving Product - Water Filter System
Stop spending money on bottled water and invest in a water filter system for your faucet.

2. Lunchbox, Storage Containers and Reusable Beverage Bottles
Money-Saving Products for Lunches

If you're still buying paper sacks, sandwich baggies and juice boxes for your lunch, your spouse's lunch or the kid's school lunch, don't. Instead, invest in a good lunchbox, storage containers and a reusable beverage bottle. My husband takes his lunch to work every week, and I've saved tons of money by eliminating the sandwich baggies and using the little storage containers and his beverage bottles.

3. Mini Bag Sealer
Money-Saving Product - Mini Bag Sealer
As you already know, once chips, crackers and other bagged snacks go stale, they no longer taste good. When this happens, we throw them away. Naturally, throwing away food is a waste of money, but if you get a mini bag sealer, you won't be throwing money away.

I have one of these nifty little gadgets, and I love it! My chips and crackers are always fresh, everytime! The mini bag sealers really do work! Note, be careful when selecting them, though, because some are so cheap they fall apart with the first use. The first one I bought was the white one (pictured above with the X), which turned out to be a waste of money instead of a money saver.

I received two of the white mini bag sealers. They had magnets on the back, so I hung one on the fridge, but the magnet wasn't strong enough and it fell to the floor and broke into pieces. Luckily, I had the second mini bag sealer. Nope, not so lucky, because soon after the first use, the second one fell apart in my hands, and I couldn't put it back together. Thankfully, it was only less than $10.00 wasted.

Now, I don't have the mini bag sealer I've provided a link to, but I have read reviews on it. Based on what I've read so far, it seems to be of better quality. It also costs a little more than the mini bags sealers that are priced under $5.00, but that's because you're paying for a better quality product.

4. Machine Washable Bamboo Paper Towels
Money-Saving Products - Washable Paper Towels
Washable paper towels? Who would've thought you can wash paper towels and re-use them! Apparently, you can. Neat, huh?

I've not tried these yet, because I just learned about them, but after reading others' reviews, I'm definitely going to buy some and give em' a try. I spend approximately $12.00 a month on paper towels, so if I can spend even less, I'll be happy. Yes, I realize $12.00 a month isn't much, but I'm open to any savings, regardless of the amount.

I will definitely write a review on these machine washable paper towels after I try them. I assure you I'll give them a thorough testing, too. I will even keep track to see how many times they can actually be washed before you have to throw them away.

5. Reusable Pods for Your Keurig
Money-Saving Product - Reusable Pods
When I got my Keurig (a Christmas present from hubby), I knew right away that buying the pods would be too expensive, so I went out and bought a reusable pod, which I've had for a little over 2 years now (as of date). Before each use, I just rinse it out well with hot water.

If you've ever seen the price of pods, you'll know a reusable pod will save you a lot of money! As for the quality of coffee, I've not noticed a change in taste.

6. Food Dehydrator
Food Dehydrator - Money-Saving Product
Out of the many money-saving products out there I do have favorites, and the food dehydrator is one of them. In fact, it's at the top of my favorites list. I'm telling you, my friend, this is a definite must-have for any frugal household, because this thing WILL save you money!

Produce lasts so much longer when you dehydrate it, and it's easy to re-hydrate as well. You can even make your own garlic powder by dehydrating garlic, and then using your food processor to make it into powder.

Not only is a food dehydrator great for extending the life of produce, it's wonderful for meat too. (Embed a great YouTube video of using it for meat)

7. Breadmaker
Breadmaker
There's nothing like homemade bread! It's so much better than store bought, and cheaper too.

I found my breadmaker at a yard sale for $3.00, and I love it! A breadmaker makes the process of making homemade bread so much easier. However, after making a loaf in my breadmaker for the first time, I discovered that while the bread still tastes great, it doesn't taste as great as homemade bread made in the oven. That being said, I still use the breakmaker for the kneading and rising.

All I do is use the knead setting on my breadmaker. Then after the kneading and rising step is completed by the breadmaker, I take my dough out, punch it down to release any large air bubbles, divide the dough into halves, shape the dough into two loaves of bread, place the loaves in greased bread pans, brush the top of the loaves with butter and let them rise in a warm spot for another hour, then I bake them in the oven.

8. Meat Grinder or the Grinder Attachment for a KitchenAid Mixer
Money-Saving Product - Meat Grinder
The meat grinder is another money-saving product that I love having in my kitchen. Rather than buying ground beef all the time, I can save money when I find beef roasts, chuck steaks and even round steaks on sale. I just buy them and ground them up using my meat grinder. I usually get more this way, and I can control the fat content as well.

In addition to beef, you can also grind up chicken (dark meat only), turkey (again, dark meat only) and pork. Chicken quarters are really cheap. With chicken quarters, just remove the meat from the bones. Then use the bones to make chicken broth/stock to save even more money.

If you do any hunting, the meat grinder also comes in handy for making ground venison, bison and etc..

9. Vacuum Sealer
Food Vacuum Sealer
These are great for protecting your meat from freezer burn. The bags can be a bit pricey for my liking, but a quick Google search will reveal many cheaper alternatives that work just as well.

My vacuum sealer really comes in handy when I buy meat in bulk, which is a part of my frugal grocery budget. I always have to break the meats down by re-packaging, so I pull out the vacuum sealer for this process.

10. Canning Jars
Money-Saving Products - Canning Jars
Naturally, if you can or plan to start canning to help stretch your grocery budget, you'll need canning jars. Canning isn't the only use for these, though, I've also used them for keeping bacon grease in and storing dry goods such as sugar, flour, bread crumbs and etc..

11. Herb Saver

Money-Saving Product - Herb Saver
We all know fresh herbs aren't cheap, unless you grow your own. Sadly, they usually don't last long, so you have to use them as soon as you can. Some people extend the life of their herbs by wrapping them in a damp paper towel then storing them in the fridge, but for less than $20.00 you can invest in a herb saver, which does better than the damp paper towel.

Honestly, this is one money-saving product I've yet to add to my kitchen gadgets, because when I do buy fresh herbs, I try to use them within a day or two. However, I've heard from others who have bought a herb saver, and people really seem to love it. They said it doesn't take up much space in their fridge, and they stated that the herb saver has kept their herbs fresh for as long as two weeks, sometimes longer.

Money-Saving Products for Your Home

12. Power Strips With a Switch
Surge Protector
According to Energy Saver, standby power could be costing you $100.00 annually. The good news is you can reduce that energy cost by investing in power strips with a switch. When using these power strips, you'll be able to switch off appliances, office equipment and other electronics when you're not using them. By flipping off the switch on the power strips, you're shutting down all power on those electronics, which reduces your energy bill.

If you need a really good power strip with a switch, I recommend the Tripp Lite 120 volt surge protector. Tripp Lite offers a lifetime warranty and insurance on this power strip. What this means is if any of the electronics that are plugged into the strip are damaged by a surge, or even a lightning strike, they'll repair or replace the damaged equipment up to the value of $75,000. That, along with the energy savings, in my opinion, makes the $19.74 investment well worth the money.

13. Motion Sensor Light Switches
Motion Sensor Light Switch
I'm a real stickler about keeping lights off during the day and relying on natural lighting from the sun. Then when the sun goes down and you have to turn on a light to see, I make sure I turn the lights back out when I leave the room. However, I'm constantly on to my husband for leaving lights on. He's really bad when it comes to turning out lights.

If your spouse or someone else in your house is like my husband, motion sensor light switches will solve the problem and save you money. This money-saving product will also be a stress reliever for you and the person you're always getting on to about turning out the lights. 😉

14. Weatherstrip Seals
Money-Saving Products - Weatherstrips
This is a money-saving product that most of us don't think about when we're trying to buy things for our home that will save us money. To help cut down on your energy bill even more, some good weatherstrips for your windows and doors helps keep the cold out in the winter, and in the summer, these strips also help reduce the humidity in your home. Furthermore, they'll help keep those pesky insects outside where they belong.

15. Low Flow Shower Head
WaterSense Shower Head
The frugality in us causes us to sacrifice things in order to save money. For instance, you may take less showers in order to save on your water and energy bill. Well, if you change to a low flow shower head, you won't have to take less showers to save money.

When you begin your search for this money-saving product, look for one with a flow rate that doesn't exceed two gallons per minute (gpm). If it has the WaterSense label, you can rest assured that it's a money-saving shower head.

Need a little assistance in your search? The Peerless 5 spray fixed head is WaterSense approved, and you can conserve water with the pause setting. The best part is when you restart the water, the temperature will be the same as where it was when you paused it. Oh, did I mention you can get this shower head for less than $10.00? Yep, you can, for the time being anyway.

Some places offer a rebate if you buy a shower head with the WaterSense label. You can check for those rebates in your area on the EPA website.

16. Steam Mop
Bissell PowerFresh Steam Mop
You're probably wondering how exactly a steam mop made my money-saving products list, right? Well, it eliminates the need for Mop and Glow or whatever floor cleaner you use, because a steam mop only uses tap water. That's right, plain old tap water! The steam and heat is what kills the germs, and I can tell you from my own personal experience with a steam mop that it does a better job than the mop. Not only does it clean better and save you money, but it also saves you a lot of back aches, too. Steam mopping your floors is still physical labor, but it's not as physically exhausting as mopping with an old fashioned mop and bucket.

I bought the Bissell PowerFresh steam mop 1940W in August 2015 and paid $79.98 for it, and now I won't mop my floors any other way. I absolutely love this thing!

17. Egyptian Cotton Sheet Set
Egyptian Cotton Sheet Set
Yes, I know, because you're frugal you probably just buy the cheapest sheet set you can find, and you're happy since you saved money by buying the cheapest set. Or did you save money? Not really, because if you have one of my experiences, you'll be buying another sheet set in a month or two.

I bought a cheap sheet set at Walmart for under $20.00, and in one months time, the fitted sheet got a big hole in it, so I went back to buy another cheap set and the same thing happened! For the amount I spent replacing the cheap sheet sets I bought, I could've spent that money on a more expensive set that would've lasted longer.

On my third trip to replace the second cheap set I bought, I decided to go for the better quality and shopped for an Egyptian cotton sheet set with a thread count of 300 or more. I bought the more expensive set in 2017 and now it is 2018 (one year later), and I still have that same Egyptian cotton sheet set, which I've washed several times, and it's still like new. No holes or signs of wear and tear.

Can you imagine how much money I would've spent in a year had I continued to buy the cheap sheet sets rather than paying about $15.00 more for better quality? So, see, sometimes you actually save money by paying more for a better quality product.

18. LED Lightbulbs
Money-Saving Products - LED Lightbulbs
LED lightbulbs last longer than regular bulbs and helps reduce your energy bill. Plus, unlike CFL lightbulbs, the LED bulbs provide a brighter light.

19. Programmable Thermostat
Programmable Thermostat
Installing a programmable thermostat can save you some money on your energy bill. In order to save money, though, you need to know how to operate it. Energy Saver offers some tips to help you operate your programmable thermostat efficiently.

Other Money-Saving Products

20. Rechargeable Batteries and Battery Charger
Money-Saving Products - Rechargeable Batteries
Toys, a wireless mouse, Wii remotes and some other things around your home require you to replace batteries frequently. These products are what you want to buy rechargeable batteries for, because in the long run, you will save money by recharging the batteries rather than constantly spending money on new disposable batteries. When you do buy the rechargeable batteries that you need, make sure you also get a good battery charger for those type rechargeable batteries. If you're like me, most everything I have that I buy rechargeable batteries for takes AA or AAA batteries, so I bought a charger that recharges both AA and AAA batteries.

21. Washable Menstrual Pads or Cups
Money-Saving Products - Washable Menstrual Pads
Ladies, unlike disposable pads, reusable menstrual pads and cups will save you a lot of money, are more comfortable to wear and won't irritate your skin. All you have to do is thoroughly wash the cups before reusing them. If you use the pads, just place all the used ones together in a small bucket of cold water, and when that bucket is full, dump the water, then throw the washable menstrual pads in the washer (separate from your other laundry, of course).

22. Coin Sorter
Coin Sorter
Don't pay the fee to use the coin sorters in stores. Instead, buy one for your home. You'll be surprised how quickly all that lose change adds up. Once you have a pretty good collection of coins, take them to the bank to deposit into your savings account. Or if you need the money for a bill or emergency, exchange the coins for cash.

In addition to a coin sorter for your home, get one for your car as well. This way you don't fill your cup holder up with loose change, and you won't have to worry about sorting the change later, since, of course, the sorter does that for you.

23. Solar Lighting, Including Solar Christmas Lights
Solar Light
Solar lights are awesome! They save you money on your electric bill, because they're powered by sunlight. To really cut down on your electric bill, begin by using solar lights for your outdoor lighting.

Another way I like to use solar lights is inside. You can buy the equipment and setup solar lighting inside your home, but that can get expensive. It is worth the expense, but if you don't have the money to do that just yet, you can do what I sometimes do. I got two of the Westinghouse solar powered LED lights that give off good light (the bigger the better), and I bring them inside at night to use in the room that I'm in at the time, which is usually my office. I use them instead of the normal lights to save on my electric bill, of course. During the day, I put them back outside in the sun to recharge.

Finally, if you love decorating for Christmas, they even make solar Christmas lights! I've not tried these yet. However, I've seen homes with them, and they look just as great as the regular Christmas lights.
Money-Saving Products - Solar Christmas Lights
Do you know of any other money-saving products under $100.00 that I've not mentioned? If so, leave a comment with your recommendation(s).

Subscribe to the Living Frugally Newsletter for Updates & More!

Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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Happy Mother's Day Freebies

Mother’s Day Freebies Sure to Satisfy Mom’s Hunger

Happy Mother's Day Freebies

Photo credit: Flickr/Sam Pullara

Mom is the glue that holds the family together. She's an irreplaceable blessing and does so much on a daily basis, which is why she deserves a special day all of her own. Give her that break from cooking and take her out to eat. Let her choose from any of these places that are serving up Mother's Day freebies. If you want to give mom a double dose of love today, you can let her choose a place for lunch, and then for supper she can choose a different place.

This list of Mother's Day freebies doesn't include local mom and pop establishments, so you can always check with a local venue to see if they're offering mom a free meal or other Mother's Day freebie, and if they are, she may prefer her favorite mom and pop over the following. The choice, of course, should be hers. 😉

Arooga's - All day Sunday Arooga's will be giving moms a free meal. A beverage purchase, along with another purchase of equal or greater value to mom's meal is required for this Mother's Day freebie.
Mother's Day Freebie From Arooga's

Bagger Dave's - Moms who visit Bagger Dave's on Mother's Day will get a burger, salad or entree. In order for mom to get the Mother's Day freebie from Bagger Dave's, someone else with mom has to make a minimum purchase of $9.75. Mom must also present the coupon from Bagger Dave's website.
Mother's Day Freebie From Bagger Dave's

Beef 'O' Brady's - Take mom to Beef 'O' Brady's on Mother's Day, and she gets to eat free. This Mother's Day freebie requires a purchase from someone else in the family.
Mother's Day Freebie From Beef 'O' Brady's

Long John Silver's - Anyone in the family can buy a variety platter, and then mom's variety platter will be free.
Mother's Day Freebie From Long John Silver's

Medieval Times - If you'd like to treat mom to a dinner and show at a place where she'll be treated like a queen on her special day, take her to Medieval Times. Mom will eat free, but you will have to purchase one adult ticket in order for mom to get her Mother's Day freebie.
Mother's Day Freebie From Medieval Times

Pasta House - Is mom's favorite meal spaghetti? If so, take her to Pasta House. There she'll get a free order of spaghetti with meat sauce, and for dessert, Pasta House will get her a free cheesecake cupcake.
Mother's Day Freebie From Pasta House

PDQ - PDQ is offering moms a free meal, but someone in mom's party has to purchase a meal, bowl or salad. All PDQs are participating in this Mother's Day freebie.
Mother's Day Freebie From PDQ

Twin Peaks - All day Sunday moms can get a free meal at Twin Peaks.
Mother's Day Freebie From Twin Peaks

Wienerschnitzel - Mom's can get a free chili dog, small fries and a small soda from Wienerschnitzel.
Mother's Day Freebie From Wienerschnitzel

Mother's Day Freebies for Mom's Sweet Tooth

After you've spoiled mom with her Mother's Day lunch and/or supper, take her to one of the following eateries for a free sweet treat.

First Watch - If mom is a chocolate lover, First Watch will give her a free box of chocolates.
First Watch Offers a Mother's Day Freebie

LaMar's Donuts - Take mom to LaMar's Donuts for a free red velvet cake donut or any donut with a hole as well as a free small coffee or small fountain drink.
Mother's Day Freebies From LaMar's Donuts

Shoney's - In order for mom to get a free slice of strawberry pie, compliments of Shoney's, she'll have to indulge in Shoney's All You Can Eat Fresh Food Bar with her family. So, what you could do is just choose Shoney's for the meal, if that's what mom wants, or if you plan on treating mom to both lunch and supper on Mother's Day, you can go to Shoney's for the second meal.
Mother's Day Freebie From Shoney's

TCBY - TCBY is giving moms 6 oz. of fryo free. If mom's a diabetic, lactose intolerant or is on a gluten-free diet, TCBY has gluten-free, sugar free and dairy free options.

Mother's Day Freebie From TCBY

Subscribe to the Living Frugally Newsletter for Updates & More!

Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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Simple Monthly Household Budget Plan

Stressed Over Bills? This Simple Monthly Household Budget Plan Can Help

Simple Monthly Household Budget Plan
Many things in life cause us stress. I don't know about you, but for me I think the thing that causes me the most stress is bills. If I were rich, this would be different, of course, because I'd have the money to pay my bills and debts with quite a bit left over. However, that's not the case.

I got tired of the constant headaches from being stressed over bills, so I came up with a simple monthly household budget plan to help reduce my stress. This plan has allowed me to have a little extra money leftover from paychecks to do as my husband and I want each month. In fact, it's worked so well for me the past few years that others have asked me to help them create the same budget plan for their household, which I gladly did.

If you are tired of the never-ending headaches and loss of sleep from not being able to come up with a budget that lets you pay your bills and still have a little extra money left over, try this simple monthly household budget plan I'm sharing with you.

Step 1: Create a Table of All Your Bills & Debts

Before you can even begin with a household budget plan, you need to know how much money is going out, when each bill is due and how much you owe on your debts (if you have them).

Create your table by starting a new text document using your favorite word processor program (I use Open Office, which is a free alternative to Microsoft Office). The table you create needs to have five columns: bill, frequency (how often you make the payment), due date, amount and monthly payment or payment amount (whichever you prefer).

When you enter the amounts for bills that vary each month (e.g. electricity, water, etc.), put an estimated amount for those. The estimated amount should be an amount close to what that utility normally runs you each month.

For debts such as credit cards, loans and etc. that have set minimum payments, try to budget in more than the minimum payment. This will help you to pay off the debt sooner and not pay as much interest. Using an example, let's say you have a credit card that totals $500.00, and you would like to pay that card off in 10 months. When you divide 500 by 10, you get 50. If you can work $50.00 a month into your household budget plan, you can have that credit card paid off before the year is up. If you can't go that high, you may have to set a goal of one year or a little over a year to pay it off. Just keep dividing the balance due by the number of months you'd like to increase it to until you come up with an amount you can afford to work into your budget.

If you have quite a few debts and/or would like some help trying to pay them off and figure out a monthly payment plan that will work for you, I recommend Undebt.it. Undebt.it is a FREE debt payment manager. I have personally played around with it a few times and found it to be very helpful. I also have plans to write a review about it and post that review here at Living Frugally.

After you've completed the table with all your bills and debts, insert a final row in your table, then "merge" the cell and include the monthly and yearly totals of all your bills and debts. Following is an example of what your table should look like.

Household Budget Plan - Bills & Debts

Sample table of bills & debts.

Final Step: Prepare Your Monthly Household Budget Plan

Now that you've created a table of all your household bills and debts, your next step is to create another table for each month (January - February). You'll start a new page for each month. For example, page two will be January (page one is your list of bills and debts), page three will be February and so on.

Now, create a table with five columns. The columns will be payday, bills & amounts, total of all, check amount and left after bills. For payday, you'll enter the day of each payday. If you get paid weekly, insert four rows for four paydays.

The bills & amounts column will be the bills you pay on that payday, as well as the amount of those bills. Refer back to the table that lists all your bills and debts to fill in this information for each payday, because you'll need the amounts and due dates of all the bills and debts that you will be paying for that month. If possible, you want to pay them before their due dates to avoid late fees.

For each payday, it is also helpful if you can include an amount to put into a savings account for emergencies and/or a Christmas fund. You may also figure in approximately how much you will need for gasoline and groceries during that week.

Be sure when you are filling out your monthly household budget plan, you also include any yearly payments that may be due on the month you are creating your budget for.

In the total of all column, this will be the grand total of all the bills you will be paying with that day's paycheck.

The check amount column will be the amount of your paycheck for that payday. Since you will be creating your budget plan ahead of time, you can figure with an estimated amount, which would be an average of what your usual net income is. Let's say your paychecks are usually a little over $500.00 a week. In that case, just figure with $500.00. You can always adjust this and work things around, if needed, after you get paid, but for the budget plan, it's best to work with a number close to what you usually bring home.

For the final column, this will be the extra spending money you have left from paying your bills for that week. This amount could be more depending on what your paycheck will actually be for that week. Or if you had to miss a day or two of work for some reason, it might be less.

In an effort to help you better understand, take a look at the example monthly household budget plan below (click the image to enlarge it). The example budget plan does not include all 12 months. I just completed two months to give you an idea of what you will be doing. In addition, to make things easier when you are creating your budget plan for the entire year, you can copy and paste the tables to the new pages, and then just edit the months, payday days, bills you will be paying on each payday and etc..

In this example, we'll be using the bills and debts from the sample table in step one. This sample monthly household budget plan was created using an average net income of $500.00 a week, with the payday being every Friday. If this sample still does not help you and/or you have any questions, feel free to shoot me an email or leave a comment below, and I'll do what I can to help you. I can even get you started by doing a few months for you, and any information you give me will be kept completely confidential.

Sample Monthly Household Budget Plan

A sample monthly household budget plan.

Additional Tips to Better Your Monthly Household Budget Plan

When the bill or debt has a big monthly payment, it helps to split the payment for paydays (see the example). You will, however, have to be able to hold some of the money and NOT spend it. If you are the type of person who does not have the willpower to do this, you can give it to someone you trust and ask them to hold it for you until you have the rest of it. Then when you have the entire amount, pay the bill or debt that it's for, before the due date.

Use your tax refund to pay off some of your debts. I always try to pay off the debts with bigger monthly payments. This helps me have more leftover from each paycheck. Naturally, though, the pay offs on some of those debts will be more than your refund, so you will have to work with the debts that are not bigger than your refund. And you can always choose to use the majority or all of your refund to get closer to being debt free rather than rewarding yourself with gifts. Using your entire refund to pay off debts truly is the best option, because you can reward yourself more than just once a year when you have eliminated monthly payments from your budget. Without those extra payments, you will have more leftover from your paychecks. That would be nice, right? 😉

Put your cashback refunds from reward programs towards paying off smaller debts, or pay a smaller bill for a week that you may need extra money for an emergency vehicle repair or etc.. Furthermore, you can choose to put these small refunds into your savings account.

If you stick to this monthly household budget plan, I'm pretty certain you'll be a lot happier, have less headaches, and if the bills was all that was keeping you awake at night, then you will fall asleep much faster as well.

Subscribe to the Living Frugally Newsletter for Updates & More!

Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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Subscribe to the Living Frugally Newsletter for Updates & More!

Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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Frugal Grocery Shopping

How to Master Frugal Grocery Shopping in 8 Simple Steps

Frugal Grocery Shopping
It's inevitable, we have to eat and drink to stay alive, so a trip to the grocery store each week, month or whenever you go is just a normal part of life. Sadly, the price of groceries to feed even a small family can make a pretty good dent in the household budget. The good news is that dent doesn't have to be huge. That being said, I'd like to share a few frugal grocery shopping tips that I hope will help you leave the grocery store with less stress.

1. Use Cashback Apps

Many cashback apps such as Berry Cart, Checkout 51, Ibotta, Saving Star and Walmart's Savings Catcher will give you cash back on generic brands, produce and name brands. You'll need to save your receipts, and in some cases you'll have to scan the barcodes on products.

You can save even more by combining your cashback savings with manufacturer coupons, store coupons, digital coupons and other cashback apps that may have the same offers.

2. Buy in Bulk

Buying in bulk can cost more, but in the long run it does save you money. For instance, I reduced our monthly grocery bill by over $300.00 when I started buying meat bundles from IGA in Vienna, Illinois. Since my family goes through quite a bit of sugar, I also buy the Psst 25 lb. bag of sugar for $12.49 from the Harrisburg, Illinois Kroger. The 25 lb. bag of sugar lasts at least a month in my household, which is a lot longer than one or two 5 lb. bags, so in the long run, it's much cheaper to pay for the 25 lb. bag.

3. Avoid Buying Prepackaged Foods

Although it's time consuming, you'll save more money by making many foods from scratch. You know, things such as cookies, yogurt, bread, pizza dough, tortillas, hamburger buns, hot dog buns, pancake mix, cake mix, taco seasoning, onion soup mix, ranch dressing mix and chili seasoning.

The aforementioned DIY food recipes can be made in batches and stored in the pantry or freezer. Just click on the name of each to view and print the recipe as well as see how long it can be stored in your pantry or freezer.

4. Check the Bargain Bins and Clearance Aisles

The first thing you should do upon entering the store during your frugal grocery shopping trip is check the bargain bins and/or clearance aisles first. You never know what kind of bargains you'll discover, and if you happen to have a coupon for one or more items in the bargain bin or clearance aisle, you could score a freebie or get the product nearly free!

I always check out the bargain bins in my local Kroger, and I once got a 28 oz. bottle of TRESemme shampoo for less than $1.00. It was marked down to $1.99, but with my $1.00 off coupon, I got it for $.99!

5. Grow Your Own Herbs

If you've recently shopped for fresh herbs at your local grocery store, you were probably just as shocked as I was to discover how expensive they are. For instance, in my area, at the present time, .75 oz. of fresh rosemary is $1.98. As we all know, cooking with fresh ingredients is always best in regards to health and taste, but at that price, it makes one not want to buy fresh produce, right? Good news, there is a cheaper alternative: grow your own herbs! Yes, I know, it calls for a little extra time and work, but it saves money, and since we're a frugal bunch, saving money is our number one goal. 😉

Off the Grid News offers a great beginner's guide on the basics of growing and preserving your own herbs and spices. In addition, I recommend their easy potting mix recipe.

6. Plan Your Menu Based on What You Have Left and What's on Sale

Before each of my frugal grocery shopping trips, I browse the local sale ads, check my pantry, deep freeze and refrigerator. Then I create my grocery list based on what I already have, what's on sale and what I have coupons for. This takes me an hour or two, but the savings is well worth my time.

7. Add Seasonal Produce to Your Frugal Grocery Shopping List

Actually, your best money-saving option when it comes to produce is to grow your own, and then freeze and can it to use when it's out of season. However, if you don't want to mess with gardening and canning, then your next best option for saving money on produce is to buy fruits and vegetables that are on sale and in season. If they're on sale, buy extra to freeze for later use.

8. Use Coupons

I'll admit that I don't use a lot of coupons, and the reason is because I buy a lot of store brand products. I've learned that store brands are often cheaper, even after using a coupon on a name brand that's on sale. Therefore, if I can get the store brand cheaper, I will. Many times there's not much difference between store and name brand, but with some things there is a big difference, and when that's the case, I'll buy name brand and look for coupons for those brands.

If you prefer a name brand over a generic brand and there are coupons for those brands, use the coupons. When using coupons for your preferred brands, try to use them when those brands are on sale to save even more money, and if you can stack them with a store coupon and/or cashback rebate, you could end up with freebies.

One last thing I'd like to say about coupons is if you're a regular Kroger customer like me, be sure to create an online account on their website. By creating an online Kroger account, you'll be able to load digital coupons to your Kroger card. Kroger keeps track of what you buy the most, and they offer digital coupons for those brands. Yes, those brands include the store brands, so you can actually save with coupons on store brand groceries, household items and etc.! This is one thing I love about Kroger! They also, on occasion, will send you paper coupons in the mail, and those coupons also match up with what you buy the most from their store.

Do you have any frugal grocery shopping advice that you'd like to add? Leave a comment to share your money-saving grocery advice.

Frugal Grocery Shopping - Saving Star Rebates

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Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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Homemade Taco Seasoning Recipe

DIY Food Recipe for Homemade Taco Seasoning

Homemade Taco Seasoning Recipe

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Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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Onion Soup Mix Recipe

DIY Food Recipe for Onion Soup Mix

Onion Soup Mix Recipe

Click Image to Print

Subscribe to the Living Frugally Newsletter for Updates & More!

Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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Maximize Your Savings by Stacking Coupons

Maximize Your Savings by Stacking Coupons at These Online Stores

Maximize Your Savings by Stacking Coupons
Out of all the ways to save money, stacking coupons is my favorite! The savings really adds up with this money-saving method. Last year, in fact, I got $40 worth of clothes from an online thrift store (Schoola) free. Yes, I really got it ALL free and was able to do it by combining Schoola credits and discounts!

Being able to maximize your savings when shopping online is exciting, no doubt. Unfortunately, though, there's a limited number of online stores that offer the stacking coupons option during checkout. After quite a bit of searching, I discovered 10 online stores, which I'm now sharing with you.

Online Stores to Maximize Your Savings by Stacking Coupons

Amazon
Stacking Coupons to Maximize Savings at Amazon
You can stack an unlimited amount of coupons when ordering from Amazon. Before entering the codes during checkout, be sure to check each coupon for any restrictions that may apply.

CVS
Stacking Coupons at CVS
You're only allowed two coupons per order at CVS, and it has to be a sitewide percentage off and a coupon for a specific item.

Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy and Athleta (all owned by Gap, Inc.)
Stacking Coupons at Old Navy
These online stores allows you to stack a maximum of five coupons. If you have problems stacking the coupons during checkout, you may have to use a combination of a dollar off with a percentage off.

Since these stores are what they call "sister" sites, you can use the coupon codes from one site on another. For example, you can use an Old Navy coupon at Gap, Banana Republic or Athleta.

Kohl's
Kohl's - Stacking Coupons
Stacking coupons at Kohl's only works when shopping on your desktop. If you're shopping from your mobile device, you won't be able to maximize your savings by stacking coupons at Kohl's.

Newegg
Stacking Coupons at Newegg
Newegg allows you to add as many coupon codes to your online order as you'd like just as long as you use only one coupon code per item. For instance, you can use five coupon codes, but you MUST be buying at least five products.

In addition to coupon codes, you can get cash back by mailing in rebate forms from select Newegg products. If there's a mail-in rebate on a product you plan to buy, Newegg will include a link to the rebate form under the product's price.

Schoola
Stacking Coupons at Schoola
After browsing Schoola's website, I found no mention of a limit when stacking coupons during checkout. However, I know they allow you to stack coupons, so if they do have a limit and you reach it, I'm sure it will alert you.

Sears
Stack Coupons at Sears to Maximize Your Savings
As long as the coupons aren't the same (e.g. two percent off, two dollar off, etc.), Sears will let you stack an unlimited number of coupons.

Snapfish
Stacking Coupons at Snapfish to Save on Photos
Snapfish allows coupon stacking if you're ordering multiple items. In other words, you can only use one coupon code per item.

Target
Stacking Coupons at Target's online Store
After browsing Target's website I couldn't find any exclusions when it comes to stacking coupons in their cart, but they do allow you to use more than one coupon code during checkout. If there are limits to how many you can redeem at one time or any other exclusions, I'm sure their cart will alert you.

Victoria's Secret
Stacking Coupons at Victoria's Secret
You're allowed a maximum of three coupon codes when shopping at Victoria's Secret. Before you redeem any online coupon offers from Victoria's Secret, make sure you read the exclusions and qualifications of each offer.

In addition to stacking coupons at the aforementioned online stores, you can maximize your savings even more when you visit the store from a cashback shopping site such as eBates, My Points or Swagbucks. Before making the choice of which cashback shopping site you're going to shop from, compare their rebates and select the site that offers the biggest cashback rebate.

Happy shopping and saving!

Subscribe to the Living Frugally Newsletter for Updates & More!

Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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Combining Discounts for Bigger Savings

Hey, Frugal Shoppers, Here are Some Tips on Combining Discounts for Bigger Savings

Combining Discounts for Bigger Savings
Don't you love it when you discover big savings? Of course you do, because you're a frugal shopper like me! Also like me, I'm sure you get excited everytime you save big, right? Well, did you know the biggest savings happens when you combine discounts? Many times you can stack reward program discounts, sales, stores discount coupon codes, discount gift cards and mail-in rebates to get savings so big that the merchandise you buy is nearly free!

Naturally, you have to check the store offers' details and restrictions to see what discounts they allow you to combine and if you can use any of the discounts on their clearance products. Once you learn what you can and cannot do when it comes to stacking coupons, you can start your shopping spree.

When you're ready for your big savings shopping spree, it's always best to begin with stores that have a rewards program. I've learned these stores are usually where I can get my biggest savings. Oh, and let's not forget Black Friday and Cyber Monday. If you have reward points saved up and the store allows you to combine discounts with the sales on these special shopping days, you'll walk away a VERY happy frugal shopper!

Retailers With Free Rewards Programs

Ace Hardware
Ace Hardware Rewards Program
Stack your rewards with these additional savings from Ace Hardware: Sales | Rebates

Best Buy
Best Buy Rewards Program
Stack your rewards with these additional savings from Best Buy: Student Deals | Clearance | Deals for Members | Weekly Deals | Black Friday | Cyber Monday

Carter's
Carter's - Rewards Program
Stack your rewards with these additional savings from Carter's: Current Coupons | Clearance | Doorbusters ($5 and Up)

CVS
CVS Extra Care Savings Program
Stack your rewards with these additional savings from CVS: Online Only Offers | Rebates

Health Products for You
Health Products for You Rewards
Stack your rewards with these additional savings from Health Products for You: Current Deals

Home Depot
Home Depot Rewards
Stack your rewards with these additional savings from Home Depot: Current Specials | Daily Special | Black Friday | Rebates

JC Penney
JC Penney Rewards
Stack your rewards with these additional savings from JC Penney: Current Coupons | Rebates | Clearance | Black Friday | Cyber Monday

Kmart
Kmart Rewards Program
Stack your rewards with these additional savings from Kmart: Bluelight Specials | Current Coupons

Kohl's
Kohl's Rewards Program
Stack your rewards with these additional savings from Kohl's: Clearance | Current Kohl's Coupons | Rebates

Lite Cig USA
Lite Cig USA Rewards Program
Stack your rewards with these additional savings from Lite Cig USA: Clearance

Old Navy
Old Navy Rewards Program

Stack your rewards with these additional savings from Old Navy: Clearance

Sears
Sears Rewards Program
Stack your rewards with these additional savings from Sears: Hot Deals | Clearance | Current Coupons | Rebates | Exclusive Offers for Sears Cardholders

The Children's Place
The Children's Place Rewards
Stack your rewards with these additional savings from The Children's Place: Current Coupons | Black Friday Deals | Cyber Monday Deals | Clearance

Toys "R" Us
Toys "R" Us Rewards
Stack your rewards with these additional savings from Toys "R" Us: Clearance | Hottest Deals | Current Coupons

Walgreens
Walgreens Rewards Program
Stack your rewards with these additional savings from Walgreens: Current Coupons | Photo Deals | Clearance

Do you know of any other retailers that offers a free rewards program? Tell us about them in the comments area below.

Subscribe to the Living Frugally Newsletter for Updates & More!

Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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Diabetic Freebies

Diabetes Freebies: Supplies, Services and More

Diabetes Freebies
I know from personal experience that receiving the news that you have diabetes is upsetting, but the good news is with the proper diet and (in some cases) medication, you can manage the disease. Another downfall, though, is the cost of diabetic supplies, needed services such as eye exams, and other things for diabetics. Unfortunately, it's one of those expenses we can't cut from our budgets, because managing the diabetes is a necessity in order to keep our limbs and eyesight, as well as continue living.

Although we can't eliminate the expense from our budgets, luckily there are a few diabetic freebies out there that can at least offer us some savings. Let's begin with the supplies that we need to help us manage the diabetes.

Free Diabetic Supplies

Diabetes Freebies - Accu-Check Meter
Blink Health offers diabetics a free Accu-Chek Guide glucose meter. If you're a diabetic with or without insurance, you'll qualify for this diabetes freebie from Blink Health. To get the free meter for diabetics, you must register to be a Blink Health member. If you don't already have a Blink Health account, registration is free.

Diabetes Freebie - FreeStyle Meter and Batteries

Sign up to get a FreeStyle blood glucose meter from Abbott. This free meter does NOT come via postal mail. Instead, you'll receive a voucher to redeem at a participating pharmacy near you.

In addition to the free blood glucose meter from Abbott, you can get free replacement batteries for FreeStyle blood glucose meters.

If you receive Medicare, you can request a FreeStyle meter from Xubex. You may also qualify to get free diabetic strips and lancets. You'll be required to enter your physician information for these diabetes freebies from Xubex.

Diabetics who live in Northern Nevada and have low income can get free diabetic supplies every month from the CARE Chest Diabetic Supplies program. The diabetic supplies include blood glucose monitors, syringes, lancets and test strips.

Free Diabetic Supplies

Are you a diabetic who resides in Canada? If so, you can request a free sample pack of five BD Nano 4mm pen needles.

Diabetes Freebies - BD Needles

Diabetes Freebies: Free Services

If you're uninsured and not seen an ophthalmologist in three or more years, EyeCare America has a program that offers a free glaucoma eye exam. Keep in mind, they won't write prescriptions for glasses or cover the cost of eyeglasses.

The National Association of Free & Charitable Clinics has 1,200 medical clinics across the United States. These clinics offer free healthcare to those who may not have health insurance and/or are low income. You can do a quick search on their website to see if there's a clinic near you. Just enter your city and state in the address field. Then select the number of miles you're willing to travel to receive free healthcare.

The diabetes freebies from OneSight Vision Care Clinics includes free eye exams and glasses to adults and children, worldwide. To learn more about them and get additional information, visit the OneSight website.

If you have no insurance at all and are low income, you can receive free basic eye exams through The AOA Foundation's Vision USA program. You'll have to apply through a local social service agency. To search for a social service agency near you, learn more about the program and read the eligibility guidelines, visit The AOA Foundation.

Other Diabetes Freebies to Save Even More Money

If you're ever in an emergency situation where you're unconscious or unable to speak, the free diabetes alert necklace from the Diabetes Research & Wellness Foundation could save your life. Well, this one isn't 100% free, but the only cost is a self addressed stamped envelope, which is a very small price when it comes to something that could save your life, right?

Diabetes Freebie - Alert Necklace

Part of being a diabetic is giving up sugar and replacing it with sweeteners. When it comes to choosing a sweetener you like, sometimes that can take a little time as you try out different brands. If you're still looking for a brand or would just like to sample a new one, Truvia is giving away two free single-serve packets of their natural sweetener, along with a $1.00-off coupon for any of their products. Or you can also choose to receive just a $2.00-off coupon for any Truvia product.

Diabetes Freebies - Truvia Sweetener

Sadly, children can get diabetes too. If your child has Type 1 diabetes, the American Diabetes Association would like to give you their free Courage-Wisdom-Hope Kit for children, to help you and your child.

Diabetes Freebies for Kids and Parents

Finally, you can also get a free subscription to the Diabetic Living and Diabetes Self-Management magazines. These magazines offer helpful information for diabetics, diabetic-friendly recipes and more.

Diabetes Freebies - Magazines

I hope this list of diabetes freebies helps you get the things you can't afford, so you can manage your diabetes. I'll keep watching for more free diabetic supplies, services and products, and when I come across them, I'll update this article.

If you know of any diabetes freebies that aren't mentioned above, please share them in the comments area.

Subscribe to the Living Frugally Newsletter for Updates & More!

Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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Money-Saving Tips for the Home Caregiver

13 Money-Saving Tips Every Home Caregiver Needs to Know

Money-Saving Tips for the Home Caregiver
Taking care of an elderly parent, grandparent or other loved one is a noble thing to do, but it can be stressful. I know, because I've been there.

Stress isn't the only downfall of being a loving caregiver. Unfortunately, if you're living with the person you're caring for, it can take a toll on your finances as well. To help ease the financial burden, here are some money-saving tips I learned during the five years I spent caring for my dad before he lost his battle with cancer...

1. Use coupons on caregiver products.
Before purchasing caregiver products, search for online and/or in-store (whichever you need) coupons. Some brands with printable coupons that can be redeemed in stores that accept coupons include Depend and Poise.

If you know of other brands that sells caregiver products, try visiting the brand's website. Many times brands have a section on their site with coupons and discounts. You can also search the web by using the brand name then coupons (e.g. Depend coupons). During your search for coupons, be sure to check my Discounts & Coupons for Elderly Home Care Products page.

2. Take advantage of discounted monthly subscription plans.
Do you buy quite a few caregiver products such as gloves, personal care products and etc.? Some companies offer what most refer to as a subscribe and save or re-order and save plan. The plan lets you have product(s) you order often shipped to you automatically. When the company ships the product(s) on the delivery frequency you specify, the card you have on file with that company will be charged. Companies that offer monthly subscription plans usually give discount savings, some offer free shipping along with the discount, and you can cancel the plan anytime you want. Check each company's plan details for information on savings, free shipping and more.

3. Sign up for shopper rewards programs.
Shopper rewards programs is another great way to save money on caregiver products. Companies with a shopper rewards program gives you points based on the amount you spend. You can later use those points like a store credit for discounts on future orders. Unless the company states otherwise, you can combine your shopper rewards with that company's sales as well as use coupons (if available) and cashback programs for additional savings.

4. Reach out to friends, family and other home caregivers.
Rather than pay for adult daycare services when you need a break or have to run errands, turn to family, friends and/or other home caregivers for help.

When I was taking care of my dad and he reached the point where we couldn't leave him home alone, my family was always offering to help if I needed them. Well, one day my husband and I needed a break and the kids were at their dad's, so we called my uncle to see if he'd stay with dad for a couple days while we went camping. Without hesitation, he agreed. They enjoyed the time together, and my husband and I had a relaxing and stress-free camping trip.

Then there was another day we needed to run into town. On that day, my aunt, uncle and cousin visited with dad while we ran a few errands in town.

Usually when family offers you help, they're not just saying it to be nice. They really do want to help, so don't hesitate to call them if you need a sitter. It will save you money and everyone will be happy.

If a friend or family member isn't available on the day you need them, try offering to do a swap with another home caregiver that you know well. As with a babysitter for a child, you want to be sure this other caregiver is someone you can trust.

Since they're a home caregiver too, they'll have to bring their loved one with them. Or to make things easier, you can take your loved one to their place. Also, in exchange for them helping you, you can offer to sit with their loved one on a day when they need someone.

5. Use the internet to get free power of attorney forms and living will papers.
Rather than hire an attorney to draw up power of attorney or living will papers for your loved one, consider printing them from the web. AARP offers links to these legal documents. Just click the state that you reside in and go from there.

6. Save money by purchasing discounted gift cards.
Whether you're shopping for groceries, household supplies, treating your family to dinner out or etc., you can save a little money by purchasing discounted gift cards. Just buy the gift cards when you come across a good deal on the ones you'd use.

Gift Card Spread, Gift Card Granny and Raise all offer discounted gift cards. Try to visit these sites at least once a day to look for deals on the gift cards that interest you. If you find a good deal, buy the gift card and hold on to it until your next shopping trip. Be sure to check if they have an expiration date before you buy them, though. If they do, make sure you'll be able to use the card before it expires. If you won't, just let it go and wait for another deal, because if you buy it and can't use it before it expires, then you'll just be wasting money rather than saving.

To save even more, combine the gift card with sales and/or coupons. One special coupon offer currently available is an additional discount of 1% off these brands offering discounted gift cards. You can redeem this coupon during checkout with promo code RAISE1.

7. Contact your local utility companies to inquire about discounts.
You may be able to save money on your utility bills by calling the companies and explaining that you're a caregiver for your mother, father or whomever. After explaining your situation, ask if they offer any discounts for caregivers who are living with the ones they're taking care of. If the bill is in your loved ones name, there may be a senior discount available. If there are any discounts available, find out the qualifications. If you qualify, by all means, sign up.

8. Consider signing your loved one up for a free Silver Sneakers membership.
If the family member you're caring for is still active or wants to be active to stay fit and as healthy as possible, he/she may be interested in the FREE Silver Sneakers membership. The membership will give him/her free, unlimited access to gyms and fitness centers. It also allows them to attend free classes.

Check the Silver Sneakers website for participating gyms and fitness centers in your area. You can also sign your loved one up for the free membership through the site.

9. Save on prescription drugs.
Chances are the family member you're caring for has quite a few medications, and maybe others in your home are also paying for medications. If Medicare, Medicaid or your other insurance company isn't really helping with the cost of meds, GoodRx could help everyone in your household with savings up to 80% off prescription drugs. It's a free discounted prescription drug program. Not sure whether it would be worth it or not? Look up the costs of the medications you'd like a price on at GoodRx's website. Just enter the name of the medication to compare prices at pharmacies near you. You may discover that you can get your medicine at a lower discounted cost than your current insurance provider offers.

Blink Health is another program that offers discounted prices on prescriptions drugs. In fact, over 50% of the medicines at Blink Health cost less than $10.00. To help you get a prescription free or nearly free, Blink Health is offering new customers a $10.00 credit, which you'll use on your first order with them. Just visit Blink Health from my link to get the free $10.00 credit.

I used Blink Health and found the process real easy. All I had to do was pay for my order through the Blink Health website, and then I took the receipt that I printed out to my participating pharmacy to pick up my prescription. My pharmacy at the time was CVS, but Blink Health is also accepted at Walgreens, Walmart, Rite Aid CVS and most independent pharmacies.

10. Toss the disposable incontinence supplies for good.

Rather than throwing away money on disposable bed pads, diapers and pull-ups, invest in washable incontinence supplies. You truly can save at least $100.00 a year buying reusable incontinence products that can be washed and reused several times.

Three places you can consider that offer reusable incontinence products for men and women are CVS, Health Products for You and Medical Supply Depot. Each of these companies offers reusable bed pads, underwear and more.

For additional savings, be sure to read about Health Products for You's reward program and CVS's ExtraCare rewards program. In addition to the rewards program, Health Products for You also offers free shipping on any size order.

11. Make your own reusable incontinence wipes.
Here's what you'll need to make your own reusable incontinence wipes: a small (less than 13 gallon) trashcan with a lid, a pack of cotton washcloths, water, baby wash, baby oil, an empty spray bottle and an empty container such as a plastic Folgers coffee container.

Before we move on to how to make the wipes, let's discuss what you'll do with them after you've used them. You're going to put the used incontinence wipes (the washcloths) into the trashcan (use a grocery bag as a trashbag). Later, you can pull the plastic grocery bag from the trashcan and dump the used wipes into your washer and wash them. You'll also be storing the unused wipes (washcloths) in the Folgers or other container. Finally, you'll use the empty spray bottle for the homemade peri wash, and you'll spray the wash on the washcloth or directly onto the skin (your choice).

To make your own reusable incontinence wipes, put the following ingredients in the spray bottle: 1 cup water, 1 teaspoon baby oil and 1 tablespoon baby wash. After adding the ingredients, place the lid on the spray bottle, tighten it and shake well.

You can buy the supplies you need to make these homemade incontinence wipes at your local Dollar General, Dollar Tree or Walmart store, and the cost shouldn't be much at all. To help you save more money, keep an eye out for coupons for baby wash and baby oil.

12. Ask for discounts before buying online.
Before making an online purchase, contact the company via phone, email or (if available) live chat. Let them know your a new customer interested in making a purchase from their site, and then ask them if they have a discount they could give you for being a first-time customer. If the product(s) you're planning to purchase is for caregiving, let the company know you're a caregiver for your elderly loved one and on a budget. Then ask if they could offer you a caregiver discount. Most of the time companies will give discounts if you reach out to them, and if they don't, then all you've lost is the time it took you to contact the company. It's certainly worth trying, especially if you're ordering in bulk. If you do plan to buy in bulk, be sure to mention the product(s) and the quantity you plan to purchase.

13. Sign up for a free mobile phone.
If you don't have a landline, you may qualify to receive a free smartphone with free texting, minutes and data from SafeLink Wireless. If your income is at or below 135% of the federal poverty guidelines, or you receive medicaid, SNAP, SSI, section 8 federal public housing assistance or a veteran and survivors pension benefit, you'll definitely qualify for the SafeLink Wireless program. Also note, this program isn't available in all states, so enter your zipcode to check availability in your area.

Do you have any additional money-saving tips for home caregivers that you'd like to add? Please share by leaving your tips in the comments area below.

Subscribe to the Living Frugally Newsletter for Updates & More!

Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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Online Thrift Store Shopping

Go-to Guide for Online Thrift Store Shopping

Online Thrift Store Shopping

As a frugal shopper, you probably visit a lot of thrift stores in your area, and there is probably times when you don't feel like getting out of the house. During the times when you prefer to say home, online thrift store shopping is the way to go. Yes, that's right, you can get your thrift store fix without leaving home!

You can save time and aggravation shopping at online thrift stores by using the stores' search feature as well as shopping by categories. When shopping by category, you can get just what you're looking for by selecting the size(s), color(s) and brand(s) you're shopping for.

Below, in alphabetical order, are my favorites when it comes to online thrift store shopping. Hopefully, they'll become your favorites as well.

atOncer - atOncer is a thrift store marketplace that connects shoppers and sellers worldwide. You'll discover auctions, eStores, fixed prices and bartering. There's a large selection of merchandise such as diapers, baby furniture, clothing, collectibles and much more! Save time by using atOncer's advanced search feature to narrow your selections.
atOncer - Online Thrift Store Shopping

The Attic - The Attic offers free shipping on all their merchandise. You can shop for men and women's accessories and apparel, watches and jewelry.
Attic Clothes - Online Thrift Store Shopping

Gone-Tomorrow - Unlike most online thrift stores, Gone-Tomorrow doesn't offer clothing. They do, however, have a nice selection of vintage items, antiques, games, toys, books, home decor, housewares, purses, shoes and other merchandise at very affordable prices. Furthermore, you can name your own price on select merchandise.
Gone Tomorrow - Online Thrift Store Shopping

Schoola - Whether you're doing back to school shopping or just need more clothing and accessories, Schoola is a great place for online thrift store shopping! They offer apparel, shoes and accessories for women, kids and babies. If you're really searching for some great bargains, everything in their Closeout Closet is priced at $3, and there are many name brand clothes to choose from.
Schoola - Online Thrift Store Shopping

If you've never placed an order with Schoola, save more with the discount code FIRST50OFF to receive 50% off your first order. You can maximize your savings at Schoola by stacking coupons during checkout. What this means is you can enter more than one coupon code in their cart, so if you come across any other Schoola discounts or offers, write down the coupon codes and use them along with the FIRST50OFF code for additional savings.

I've ordered from Schoola, and I was very pleased with the merchandise I received as well as the entire experience. The thing I love about shopping at School is knowing that 40% of my purchase will benefit schools.

Swap - Swap offers clothing and apparel accessories for men, women, kids and babies, toys, maternity apparel, video games and accessories, home decor, bedding and more. New customers will get FREE shipping on orders of $10 or more, and if you visit Swap from my link above (click the store's name), you'll get 20% off your first order.
Swap - Online Thrift Store Shopping

thredUP - Save on secondhand designer brands at thredUP. You can shop for clothes, shoes, handbags, belts, gloves, sunglasses and much more. Orders totaling $79 or more receive FREE shipping.
ThredUp - Online Thrift Store Shopping

Other Great Places to Shop for Secondhand Clothing, Furniture & More

The following resources are not online thrift stores, but they offer things you'd normally find in an online or local thrift store. This way of online thrift store shopping is more like an online rummage sale. You'll discover secondhand merchandise listed by locals.

When you see something you like, you can arrange to meet the seller and buy the item(s) you're interested in. Be sure to meet in a public area with lots of people around. If you have to go to the seller's home, don't go alone.

Facebook Marketplace - Facebook's Marketplace is a great place to look for secondhand clothing, used furniture, housewares, toys, home improvement items and much more. To get local results, enter your city and state, and then select how many miles you're willing to travel to purchase the item(s) you want.
Facebook Marketplace

Craigslist - Like Facebook Marketplace, you'll discover a variety of used merchandise at Craigslist. Just select locations near you from the list on the right. Then you can select the categories that interest you. To save time, once you've selected a category, if you know what you're looking for, you can search for that item in the category or categories you select.
Craigslist

Do you have a favorite online thrift store and/or other place that I didn't mention where you like to shop for used merchandise? Comment to let us know your favorite(s) and what you like about the online thrift store(s) and/or place(s).

Happy shopping and saving!

Thrift store photo courtesy of Flickr member, Brent Moore

Subscribe to the Living Frugally Newsletter for Updates & More!

Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
Living Frugally Subscribe Button

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Free Baby Stuff for Expecting Mothers

Free Baby Stuff for Expecting Mothers

Free Baby Stuff for Expecting Mothers
 
Getting ready for the new baby or babies is exciting, no doubt, but what most first-time mommy and daddies don't realize is caring for the new bundle of joy(s) can be expensive. To help you save a little money that you can use to spoil your new arrival(s), here's some free baby stuff for expecting moms or new moms (if you've already delivered your little blessing) for you to take advantage of.
 
 

Free Baby Stuff for Expecting Mothers - Getting Ready

Free Baby Stuff for Expecting Mothers From Magnet Street

Magnet Street offers expecting and new mommies free samples of the Life Moments baby products. You can choose from announcements or invitations (cards or magnets) for baby's birth or the baby shower. They also have announcements and invitations for birthday parties, baptisms, christenings and more free baby stuff.

You can enter your information in the free sample request form on the linked page and let Magnet Street send you random free samples. However, I recommend you browse their selections, choose the product you want, and customize it with your information and photo(s). In order to get free customized samples, you'll be required to create a free Life Moments account, but it's worth it in order to see the exact quality of the product with your actual photo and information on the product.

This free baby stuff for expecting mothers from Magnet Street is only available to United States residents.

Free Baby Stuff for Expecting Mothers - Prenatal Vitamins

Photo credit: Steven Depolo, Flickr.com

If you live near a Meijer pharmacy, take advantage of their free prenatal vitamin program. As long as you have a prescription from your doctor, you can get any one of these brands of prenatal vitamins free of charge, regardless of your income: NatalCare Plus, Ultra Natal Care, Natalcare Glosstab, NataTab Rx or Advanced NatalCare.

Free Baby Stuff for Expecting Mothers: Supplies for Baby

Free Baby Stuff for Expecting Mothers From Enfamil

Enfamil Family Beginnings is offering up to $400 in free gifts for expecting mothers. The gifts include goodies for both mommy and baby. You’ll receive belly badge stickers, Enfamil formula samples, coupons and so much more!

To get these freebies from Enfamil, you'll be required to sign up for a free Enfamil Family Beginnings account. Just click the blue “join now” button at the bottom of the page. The link above is only for those who reside in the United States. If you live in Canada and would like free baby stuff from Enfamil, click this link.

Free Baby Stuff for Expecting Mothers - Diapers
Not sure which brand of diapers is best for your little one? These companies are giving away free diaper samples: Aeroflow Diaper Club, Huggies and Earth Baby.

Free Baby Stuff for Expecting Mothers From Generation Good
Join the Generation Good community to receive free product samples and coupons. You'll also get the opportunity to host home parties. If you're selected as a host, the party package includes freebies related to your party's theme. As a member of the community, you can also connect with other parents.

Free Baby Stuff for Expecting Mothers - Gymboree Class Pass

This last one isn't exactly free gifts for expecting mothers since it's not really things you can use for baby. However, it can help with your little one's development from his or her birth up to the age of 5. In addition it promises fun, and what mommy doesn't love to have fun with her precious gift from God?

The freebie is from Gymboree, and what they're giving away are free classes for children ages 0-5. Through Gymboree's classes, your baby will learn and socialize with others his or her age. If this is something you and baby will enjoy, you can sign up to get a free class pass from Gymboree today.

That concludes my list of free baby stuff for expecting mothers as well as mommies who may have already given birth. If I come across any more free baby stuff, I'll update this article. Want to know when new baby freebies are added? Subscribe to my newsletter for updates and more.

If you'd like more free gifts for expecting mothers, check out my list of gift registry freebies and discounts for expectant parents and newlyweds.


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Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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Free Money From GPT Sites

How I Get Over $300 of Free Money Every Month

Free Money From GPT Sites
Money may not grow on trees, but I came up with a simple strategy that allows me to get a little over $300 of FREE money every month. What's even more exciting is I earn even more by simply spending the free money!

The good news is I'm going to share my strategy with you. Then all you have to do is implement the same plan so you, too, can enjoy a little extra spending money month after month. Sound like something you'd like to do? Keep reading for the 411.

Complete Tasks and Offers on Get Paid To (GPT) Sites

You may already be familiar with sites that pay you to watch videos, take surveys, sign up for special offers, view ads and more, but maybe you've not earned enough to redeem your reward yet. Or perhaps you got tired of wasting your time GPT sites for such a small reward. Well, that's why I've decided to share my method with you.

Set a Daily Goal to Avoid GPT Site Burnout

The way I approach GPT sites is by setting a daily goal of 50 for each site that I'm a member of. In addition to setting a daily goal, I take breaks from each GPT site. The way I do this is rather than going from one site to the next, I'll meet my daily goal on two of the GPT sites then take a break and return later to do two more. I repeat this approach until I've met my daily goal for each site that I'm a member of. This is so much easier, I don't tire as quickly and I spend less time on the GPT sites.

Best Way to Meet Your Daily Goal Without Too Much Boredom

Watching the videos and doing the other activities on GPT sites for small reward points can become boring real fast, and it can take more time to meet the daily goal for just one GPT site. This is why I choose to do the surveys. Most of the time the surveys don't take near as much time, and with the bigger point reward, you only have to complete one survey worth 50 or more points to meet your daily goal. In fact, if you qualify for and complete a survey worth more than 50 points, you'll exceed your daily goal and earn extra free money.

When I first started with GPT sites a few years ago, I didn't think the surveys were worth my time. It seemed like you never qualified. However, over time, I've discovered qualifying for the surveys has gotten better. It can still take a little bit of time to qualify for and complete a survey, but it's not as bad as it use to be, and after you do so many, you learn how to get through them quickly and qualify for more.

Join What I Think are the Best GPT Sites

Following are the six GPT sites I'm a member of and recommend. I'm including how much you'll earn each month using the same daily goal as I do.

Swagbucks: Out of all the GPT sites Swagbucks is my favorite! If you watch their blog, they offer extra earning opportunities to help you reach your goal quicker, or if you choose, you can exceed your goal for extra free money. Some of their extra opportunities include team challenges and Swago. In addition, they give monthly bonuses that go as high as 300 swagbucks (points). In my opinion, those extras really make Swagbucks a fun GPT site.

Join through my link above to get a sign-up bonus of 150 swagbucks, which will exceed your goal for today.

Total Monthly Earnings for January, March, May, July, August, October & December: $15
Total Monthly Earnings for April, June, September & November: $15
Total Monthly Earnings for February: $13

My Points

Total Monthly Earnings for January, March, May, July, August, October & December: $10
Total Monthly Earnings for April, June, September & November: $10
Total Monthly Earnings for February: $10

Prize Rebel: After you join Prize Rebel, go to the surveys section and complete the 85-point "your surveys." By completing "your surveys," you'll increase your chances of qualifying for surveys that Prize Rebel will recommend for you, and you'll meet the 50 point goal for your first day.

Total Monthly Earnings for January, March, May, July, August, October & December: $15 (Can choose Paypal, so you can spend it wherever you like).
Total Monthly Earnings for April, June, September & November: $15 (Can choose Paypal, so you can spend it wherever you like).
Total Monthly Earnings for February: $14 (Recommendation: choose the $10 Paypal reward and two $2 Amazon gift cards).

These last two GPT sites allows you to earn actual money as well as points. You can convert your points to cash and cash to points. I choose to do the activities that offer actual money instead of rewards. If you decide to do the same as I do, you'll need to set a daily goal of $5.00 for both of these sites to get the monthly earnings mentioned below.

Rewarding Ways: If you have your reward sent to your Paypal account, Rewarding Ways charges a 2% fee.

Sign up using my link above to get a $.20 sign-up bonus.

Total Monthly Earnings for January, March, May, July, August, October & December: $151.90 (after the 2% fee)
Total Monthly Earnings for April, June, September & November: $147 (after the 2% fee)
Total Monthly Earnings for February: $137.20 (after the 2% fee)

Send Earnings: Sign up using the link from this web page and you'll get a $5 sign-up bonus, which means you'll meet your daily goal for today. 😉

Total Monthly Earnings for January, March, May, July, August, October & December: $155
Total Monthly Earnings for April, June, September & November: $150
Total Monthly Earnings for February: $140

Beware of These Pitfalls on GPT Sites

I learned pretty quickly most of the downloads aren't safe for your computer or smartphone. They usually contain viruses, adware and/or spyware. Some may be safe, but I no longer take chances with any of them. The points or cash they offer just isn't worth the risk to me when there are many other activities to choose from.

Some of the free offers on GPT sites only reward once, so try to remember the offers you sign up for because you'll only receive points or cash for them one time. It will usually state if it's a one-time offer. If your memory is anything like mine, keep a list of the name of the offers you signed up for on your computer or in a nearby notebook. Putting that list in alphabetical order helps you refer to it quicker. 🙂 Also keep in mind, may GPT sites include the same offers.

If your browser has any pop-up blockers such as Adblock Plus, Disconnect or another pop-up blocker, be sure you temporarily disable them while you're on the GPT sites. If you don't disable them and complete an activity, you may not get your points or cash for that activity due to the pop-up blocker(s) interfering.

Crowdflower tasks sometimes require knowledge and can be difficult, but the biggest thing to really be aware of is you're sometimes graded on the tasks you perform, and if you receive a failing grade, you won't get the promised points or cash. Honestly, I've heard the grading is fair and the tasks usually aren't worth the reward, so it's probably best to avoid the tasks activities on GPT sites.

Think Sensibly When Using GPT Sites

While most GPT sites offer a variety of earning activities, we have to use common sense to determine which of those activities are worth our time and will be the most beneficial to us. Based on my own experience with GPT sites, I think watching the videos is the biggest time waster. With most of the sites, you have to watch a certain number of videos just to earn two or three points. It's just discouraging, to say the least.

Create one or two email accounts using Gmail, so your personal and/or business email accounts aren't filled with spam. I have two Gmail accounts: one for just spam (use when signing up for those offers) and one for only my reward and cashback memberships.

Get a Google Voice number for the offers that require a phone number when signing up. Unfortunately, many of those sign-up offers ask for and require you to enter a valid phone number, so they can bombard you with those annoying telemarketing calls or phone surveys. I use to enter 000-000-0000 in the phone number field, but lately it seems most forms no longer accept that, but they do recognize the Google Voice number as a valid number. 😉

If you'd rather spend less time on the GPT sites and don't want to do the surveys, you could go for the bigger points. The sign-up offers that usually give the bigger points are free trial offers, but they require a credit card, and I'm sure you don't like giving that information out to just anyone. Plus, if you forget to cancel after the trial ends, you could end up in serious debt with all the charges to your card. If you do decide to sign up for some of the trial offers, the best alternative is a prepaid card with just a little money (the minimum) on it. Choose a prepaid card with no monthly or annual fees. Also, to help you remember when to cancel, you can use a free reminder service.

Score More Free Money While Spending What You Already Have

Remember at the beginning of this article when I said you could earn even more by simply spending the free money you get from GPT sites? Well, the best way to earn a little more free money is from cashback sites. You can do this through the GPT sites too, but when it comes to getting cash back for my purchases, I use and recommend eBates.

Cashback sites such as eBates also list special offers and coupons from each merchant to help you save money.

If you join eBates from my link above, you'll get $10 FREE, after your first cashback shopping trip.

Once you're done shopping, you can use your cashback earnings for more gifts, and when you buy those gifts from a merchant at eBates or another cashback site, once again you'll earn cash back, which you can use for even more gifts if the total cashback you earned is enough.

The minimum to earn for a payout from eBates is $5.01, and they send the payment every three months. Their payment options are a check by mail or Paypal. So far I've earned over $30 cashback from eBates, and most of that was during my Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Christmas shopping adventures.

Spend Your Free Money From GPT Sites Wisely

Christmas gifts. Christmas shouldn't be stressful, but many families struggle to buy Christmas gifts each year. With this free money, the struggle could be over.

Products to giveaway. Build your Facebook page, website or blog traffic, or your Twitter followers by having giveaway contests. With this amount of free money, your giveaway products(s) could be awesome!

Gifts for other occasions: Is someone you care about having a birthday, getting married or having a baby? These are just a few occasions where a gift might be required.

Personal shopping spree: Everyone deserves to treat themselves to something nice every now and then, right? 😉

Gifts for your valued clients or customers: If you have clients or customers that you value because of their frequent business, show them your appreciation with a gift.

Put the money in a savings account: It's always nice to have a little money saved up just in case of an emergency. That being said, start a savings account or add more money to the one you already have.

Pay off some debts: Relieve some stress by paying off a medical bill, loan or other debt.

Invest the free money: If you invest or have ever considered it, use some or all of what you earn through GPT sites. Since it was basically free money, if you lose it, it won't hurt near as bad.

Happy earning and shopping!

Subscribe to the Living Frugally Newsletter for Updates & More!

Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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Save Money & Get Free Amazon Gift Cards

See How Easily You Can Save Money & Get Free Amazon Gift Cards Just for Sharing Deals

Save Money & Get Free Amazon Gift Cards
Do you spend hours scouring the internet, local ads, social media and anywhere else you can think of for great deals to save money? What if you could cut down on the time you spend hunting for deals and even earn FREE Amazon gift cards for sharing deals? The good news is I discovered a website that lets you do just that, and today I'm going to introduce you to what I think is the greatest real-time deal sharing site I've stumbled upon thus far!

Since I found Dealspotr, the time I spend searching for the best online deals has decreased quite a bit. In fact, Dealspotr is pretty much the only place I go now when I'm looking for great deals that help me save money, and the reason for that is because I'm able to personalize "my feed" to fit my interests as well as earn FREE Amazon gift cards (more on that later in this article).

The two things I hated the most about searching for deals before was the expired promo codes and the wasted time scrolling through deals I had no interest in. Now, I no longer have that problem.

The Quickest Way to Finding the Best Deals to Help You Save Money

The first thing you need to do is sign up for a free Dealspotr membership. Once there, click "join" located at the top right of the site. Note, if you're a blogger, you should definitely join as an influencer for more perks, which requires you to go to a different link. I'll explain the influencer benefits and instructions for that special membership in a few more minutes. But for now let's focus on how frugal shoppers can sign up.

Save Money at Dealspotr
For all you frugal shoppers, you can join using your Facebook, or if you're like me and prefer not to give the Facebook permissions, you can join by filling out the form located under the "connect with Facebook" button. When registering, if you click the link in the paragraph above this one to join, or use the promo code LIVINGFRUGALLY, you'll get 5,000 points instead of the usual 2,000, but to get the 5,000 points you MUST complete your new user checklist and post your first valid deal. You'll learn more about the point system and what it's for farther down in this article.

Save Money at Dealspotr
If you're a blogger and want to join as an influencer for the additional perks, you'll need to click this link to join, and then enter the following influencer access code: WjauENON (the code is case sensitive, so you must enter it exactly as shown, with uppercase and lowercase letters). As an influencer, you'll get 15,000 points after you reach "silver status."

Save Money at Dealspotr
Your next step is to confirm your email address. The email will come from contact@dealspotr.com. If you don't see that email in your inbox, check your spam folder. As soon as you find and open the email, there will be a link inside for you to click on to activate your Dealspotr account.

After you activate your account by clicking on the link in the email from Dealspotr, you'll start personalizing your Dealspotr feed. First, you'll select three interests by clicking on the images. Deals related to the interests you select will appear in your feed everytime you login to your Dealspotr account and click "my feed." Later, you can add more interests and remove interests you previously added by subscribing and unsubscribing.

Save Money at Dealspotr - Personalize Your Feed
Your final step to setting up your Dealspotr account requires you to select three brands. The suggested brands will depend on the interests you chose in the previous step. However, just like with the interests, at any time you'll be able to subscribe to new brands and unsubscribe from brands you're no longer interested in seeing deals for.

Save Money at Dealspotr - Stores

Using Dealspotr to Save Money

Congratulations, you're finally a member of Dealspotr!

Before you can start looking for those great deals that will help you save money, just a little more patience is required while you wait for Dealspotr to generate your feed with the interests and brands you just chose. It may take a few minutes, but once the generating is complete, your feed will be loaded with lots of deals based on your interests (see the image below of my feed as an example).

Save Money at Dealspotr - Personalized Feed
If you joined as an influencer and want to reach "silver status" to receive your 15,000 points (enough to get your first free Amazon gift card), click on the picture icon at the top right. Then click "influencer tools" from the drop down menu.

Get Free Amazon Gift Cards Sharing Deals
Soon after you've completed those steps, you should see the statues on the left side of the page. Find "silver status" and follow the instructions listed in that box "to unlock" the "silver status."

Finally, you're ready for the exciting part of saving money! To view deals of interest to you, scroll through your personalized feed. To view more deals, click the "discover deals" link to the left of the "my feeds" link. You can also search for deals using the search bar or using other methods shown in the image below.

Search Deals to Save Money at Dealspotr
Looking for deals at Dealspotr really is simple and less time consuming than visiting several different deals sites and searching the web. There are several thousand online and in-store deals from over 50,000 merchants!

Scoring FREE Amazon Gift Cards With Dealspotr

You may have already noticed by now that Dealspotr is run by a community who also loves to save money! Additionally, they enjoy sharing deals they've discovered outside of Dealspotr, and as a reward for sharing and being active on Dealspotr, they earn points that can be exchanged for $10 Amazon Gift cards.

If you want to start earning points for Amazon gift cards, you may do so by adding deals, editing deals that's already been added, completing the daily checklist and referring others who love saving money. Points can add up rather quickly as you become more active. To learn how to become more active, read the information on Dealspotr's website. There is lots of useful information that will help you become more familiar with how things work. Trust me, it's well worth your time. 😀

Bloggers who join as an influencer get additional perks such as cash in their PayPal account rather than Amazon gift cards (must reach "gold status"), access to paid writing opportunities on the Dealspotr blog (contact Dealspotr for details), a link to their blog from the influencer directory, opportunities to co-host monthly giveaways to help boost their blog's traffic, double points for every new deal they post, and double commissions as well as an exclusive up-front fee on their referrals.

I've been a Dealspotr influencer since August 2016, and four months after joining, I earned my first free Amazon gift card! I could've earned my gift card sooner, but I spent a little extra time getting familiar with the site and looking for deals to help me save money. Since I studied the site and am more active, my points add up faster. In my opinion, Dealspotr is a whole lot better and more exciting than the GPT sites! I still do surveys on those sites to earn even more free gift cards and cash in my PayPal account, but I don't enjoy them near as much as I do Dealspotr. Go ahead and explore Dealspotr more, and I'm pretty sure you'll love it just as much as I do, if not more.

Subscribe to the Living Frugally Newsletter for Updates & More!

Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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Gift Registry Freebies

Gift Registry Freebies & Discounts for Expectant Parents & Newlyweds

Gift Registry Freebies
Two very memorable and exciting life events are getting married to your soulmate and having a baby. To add to the excitement, friends and/or family members help you out by hosting a shower for you. While they'll do most of the planning, it's usually up to you to register with places you'd like shower guests to buy their gifts from. Naturally, you're probably so overwhelmed with getting ready for the new baby or starting your life with your soulmate that you might be considering skipping the gift registries, because you just don't have time to add what you want to the registries, right? Well, you really should reconsider, because you'll be more likely to get the things you truly need, but the most important reason to register -- and the best part of creating registries -- is the gift registry freebies and discounts. I know you like freebies and discounts, because you're here looking for ways to save money, so keep reading to discover the great freebies and discounts you can get if you take the time to sign up for the gift registries!

Amazon Gift Registry Freebies & Discounts

Amazon offers freebies and discounts for newlyweds and expectant parents who sign up for a wedding or baby registry and start adding the things they'd like to receive as gifts. Amazon's gift registries are also universal, which means you can add gifts you want from places other than just Amazon.

If you're signing up for the Amazon wedding registry and add products from Lenox, Nordic Ware, All Clad, Calphalon, Global and Scanpan, Nespresso, Le Creuset and Vitamix to your registry, you will get freebies from those vendors if you meet their purchase requirements. The free wedding gifts you could receive from the vendors include a free Lenox Tuscany decanter, a Bundt thermometer, cake mix and measuring cups from Nordic Ware, a stainless 9" French skillet customized with your initials and wedding date, Unison nonstick 12" round griddle and a Contemporary 5" Santoku knife from Calphalon, Global GS-39 fluted vegetable knife, Nespresso $50 club credit, limited edition stoneware mini-cocotte gift set in pearlescent white, and a 20oz. double-wall insulated smoothie cup.

Expectant parents who sign up for the Amazon baby registry will receive 90-day returns and the mobile registry app. If you're a Prime member, you'll get a free parenting eBook, a free welcome box, several exclusive 25% off discounts and more.

After your wedding or baby shower, Amazon will give you a one-time 10% discount off select items sold and shipped by Amazon. If you're a Prime member, newlyweds get a 20% discount and expectant parents receive a 15% discount.

Babies "R" Us Gift Registry Freebies & Discounts

Babies "R" Us offers the following baby registry freebies: expert advice, pre- and postnatal classes and events, printable registry announcement cards, shower planning tools and resources, registry apps, returns for up to one year, and 10% unlimited cashback on purchases your guests and you make from your Babies "R" Us baby registry. In addition to all these free goodies, you'll get a 10% discount certificate that won't have any exclusions, and you'll be able to use it to purchase anything left in your registry that you didn't get.

Bed Bath & Beyond Gift Registry Freebies & Discounts

Register for the Bed Bath & Beyond wedding registry to receive freebies from Bed Bath & Beyond as well as vendors. If you participate in Bed Bath & Beyond's Rock Your Registry in-store events, you'll receive a free goody bag. Bed Bath & Beyond also gives a completion in-store and online discount, and free announcement cards that you can customize and print from their website, or you can visit any of their stores or call them and request to have your free announcement cards shipped to you free of charge.

You can get lots more free gifts from vendors when your friends and family purchase qualifying items that you'll add to your Bed Bath & Beyond wedding registry. You'll discover all of the vendors, a list of the many free gifts and each vendor's requirements in the "freebook." Some of the free gifts you could receive include a Mikasa Cheers Carafe, Noritake dinnerware, 8" non-stick fry pan, red oven mitt, Corelle serving bowls, Ginkgo cocktail forks, Zwilling 4-Qt. soup pot and much, much more!

buybuy Baby Gift Registry Freebies & Discounts

Sign up for buybuy Baby's baby gift registry online or in-store to receive free announcement cards as well as a free goody bag filled with samples and freebies. If you register online, you'll have to visit a buybuy baby store near you to request your free goody bag. After your baby shower, you can use the buybuy Baby complimentary in-store and online discount certificates to save on the things you didn't get for baby.

Crate & Barrel Gift Registry Freebies & Discounts

Crate & Barrel offers a variety of freebies and quite a few discounts to newlyweds who create a wedding registry. For those of you who sign up for the wedding registry in a Crate & Barrel store near you, you'll receive a set of their best-selling stemless wine glasses, which will come in an embroidered linen bag. You'll also get free announcement cards (in-store offer), free gifts from 23 vendors to registrants who meet the purchase requirements. Click here to see the list of vendors, their requirements and the free gifts you could get. Furthermore, if you attend a private registry event, you'll be entered into drawings for free prizes, gain access to free samples, get a free goody bag and more.

Crate & Barrel offers a generous amount of discounts to help you save money. The discounts consist of a 10% off in-store and online discount for six months, 15% off a rental at The Black Tux, and 15% off wedding announcements and party invitations from Paperless Post

Target Gift Registry Freebies & Discounts

Start a Target wedding registry to get these freebies and discounts: bonus gifts from vendors after qualifying purchases and a discount of 15% off anything left on your registry that you didn't get.

Expectant parents who sign up for Target's baby registry are eligible for these freebies and discounts: a welcome kit filled with over $100.00 worth of coupons and handpicked samples (must pick up in the store at Guest Services) as well as a discount of 15% off anything you added to your registry but didn't get.

Money & Time Saving Tips

When you take advantage of the gift registry completion discounts from the retailers, you can save even more money when you make your online purchases through one of the cashback shopping or GPT sites that you're a member of.

I know you must be thinking that managing all those registries is going to be time consuming and possibly leave you frustrated and pulling your hair out before it's all said and done, right? Well, thanks to My Registry it doesn't have to be. My Registry is free, and through your account with them, you'll be able to manage all your gift registries in one place, which, of course, leaves you more time for all the planning you have ahead of you. 🙂

Subscribe to the Living Frugally Newsletter for Updates & More!

Living Frugally Newsletter FreebieWhen you subscribe, you'll get notifications when new money-saving advice has been added to the site. Each newsletter will also include at least five freebies (sometimes more) and a money-saving tip. Furthermore, you'll get occasional alerts about what I believe are the BEST deals.

As my thanks to you for subscribing, you'll receive a FREE PDF filled with over 25 money-saving online tools and apps! This freebie will be emailed to you immediately after you confirm your subscription to the Living Frugally newsletter. When I updated the PDF freebie with new online tools and apps that save you money, I will send out an email letting you know about those updates, and I'll include a link where you can go to download the updated version.
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