Sunday, April 29, 2012

Oh, You Know.

 (This is what happens to our house while I do the Comp list!! Eeeek!)

I wanted to just do a quick post because I am quite proud of myself.  

I am constantly finding new things to comp.  Tonight, I comp'd my textbooks for the next semester.

I currently go to Emporia State University so I usually just by my books from their bookstore.  I prefer to buy used because they are quite a bit cheaper.  I had all of the books in my "cart" on their website and the total came to $250 for my books for this summer semester.  Not too bad, really.

But then I wanted to see if I could get them any cheaper.  I went to Barnes and Noble's website for textbooks, figuring the prices would about be the same.  And they were.  Until I looked a little closer.  When you search for your textbook (which is easiest to do by the ISBN #- just click on "advanced search") it will give you the price from Barnes and Noble but also the price from other retailers that you can actually buy from through B & N's website.  When your textbook shows up, click on the picture of it.  It will take you to a screen similar to this:

The top one shows the price from B&N.  The second one gives the option of prices from other textbook sellers.  Just click on "See All Prices" and it will list all of the prices found:

It also shows the condition of the books being sold.  There is a shipping charge for the books- usually $3.99 from each different seller.  But, consider that this same book was listed on the bookstore's website for $52.45 I am still saving about $10.00! 

I did this for each book and my grand total which included shipping and everything came to $142.58.  I saved just over $100!

Anyway, if you know of any college students or have children that will soon be in college please take my advice and shop around for those textbooks!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Price Comping at It's Best

Yesterday I went for my weekly grocery run to Walmart.

As I was piling groceries into my cart I just knew this was going to be an expensive trip. In fact, I cut my shopping short as I was just sure I had spent well over $100.

I checked out and to my surprise my total came to $57 and some change.  I just had to take a picture.
Here is some of what I bought and how much I saved:

20 bottles of Powerade- Regular price $0.88ea ($17.60) / comp price $0.59 ea ($11.80) = $5.80 saved
3 chunks of Kraft cheese- Regular price $2.68 ($8.04) / comp price $1.49 ($4.47) = $3.57 saved
1 package Kraft shredded mozzarella cheese- Regular price $2.68 / comp price $1.49 = $1.19 saved
2 packs Nestle Pure Life bottled water- Regular price $3.98 ($7.96) / comp price $3.33 ( $6.66) = $1.30 saved
1 package Oreo cookies- Regular price $2.98 / comp price $2.00 = $.98 saved
1 package Keebler Fudge Shoppe cookies- Regular price $2.38 / comp price $1.88 = $0.50 saved
3 packs Farmland bacon- Regular price $3.78 ea ($11.34) / comp price $1.99 (5.97) = $5.37 saved
1 box of Capri Sun- Regular price $2.48 / comp price $1.79 = $0.69 saved
1 Peter Pan peanut butter- Regular price $2.68 / comp price $1.99 = $0.69 saved

In just those few things I saved over $20.00.

So when I was walking around feeling guilty for spending over $100 in groceries I was partially correct. Had I not comp'd the items I was buying I WOULD have spent over $100.

I challenge you to write down the regular prices of the items you buy just to see how much you save in one week by comping your groceries.  You will be surprised!

Saturday, April 07, 2012

A Lesson Learned

My husband and I were in the market for new cellular devices.  I could feel a migraine looming: 3G or 4G? Contract or no contract? And our upgrade will cost how much??

After researching phones online and reading reviews, Darek found the phone he wanted. And so did I. However, the one I wanted was going to be $299 (eek!).

We went to T-Mobile and got Darek's phone upgraded and changed our plan some.  Just like that we were bound to another 2 year contract.

Darek's phone came to $180 but with a $50 mail-in rebate.  He needed a cheap car charger so we made our way to Walmart.  It was there that I, the self-proclaimed Price Comp Queen, learned my lesson. ALWAYS CHECK PRICES BEFORE YOU MAKE PURCHASES!!

The phone that I wanted from the T-Mobile store ($299, remember?) was there, staring at me. For a portion of the price.  And by a portion I mean HALF.  It was $148.99.  So I bought it.

And remember Darek's new phone? The $180-but-really-$130-after-the-rebate one? It was there, alright. For $28.88.

The moral of the story- please, oh please shop around when purchasing a new cell phone. The direct dealers will not always have the best price.

And my father-in-law may have nailed it when talking to the lady helping me at Walmart- I saved enough today that maybe I can afford pants without holes in them.

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Red Robin.... YUMMM!

Ok, so I know eating out isn't the HEALTHIEST thing ever.  But if you are anything like us you probably eat out a lot.  We are pretty much always on the go and just stopping somewhere and grabbing a bite is very convenient.  It can also be expensive.

I try not to go to any restaurant (or at least a sit-down, casual dining restaurant) that I do not have a coupon for.  If you don't mind getting a few extra email messages here and there, sign up for coupons! There are a couple of restaurants that are awesome about putting out coupons:

Chili's: Go here to sign up for their email club.  They will send you coupons almost every week- usually for a free order of chips and queso or for a free dessert.

Casey's: Like Casey's pizza? If you go here you can often get pizza coupons or donut coupons.

Ruby Tuesday's: Click here to sign up for Ruby Tuesday's So Connected club.  They will email you coupons, including a free birthday burger!  "Like" them here to see the coupons they post on Facebook.

Red Robin: They have an eClub that will sign you up for coupons and a free birthday burger, also.  Just enter the location you go to (there is one in Topeka and one in Olathe that are close) and sign up.  Also, "like" then on their Facebook page to see the coupons posted on there.  Today they are going to post a $5 off of $20 coupon!

Like a restaurant that is local but they don't have a website/email club? Search for them on Facebook and "Like" them.  Facebook is a fantastic way for restaurants and shops to post coupons and discounts.  A few of my favorite local places that are on Facebook include:

Nana's Fudge-n-Stuff- they have pretty much anything your little sweet tooth desires.  I recommend buying some of the fresh honey when you are there! They have started posting discounts on their page so keep an eye out!

Poncho's in Ottawa- if you have been there I know you CAN'T resist their chips and cheese.  They also have the best cheeseburgers ever.  And just the other day they had a special- everything on their menu was the price that it was in 1982.  Cheap and amazing? Yes, please.

One more.  Exclusive 3rd Street Spa.  They are constantly posting specials to keep your hair and nails looking good (or for ripping off hair for places that aren't supposed to have it!).  I go here and they are fantastic.  And who are you kidding? You are saving money with my comp list so go pamper yourself with the extra cash!

I will post more as I find them.  Have one you think I should add? Leave me a comment!

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

It's Almost Wednesday!!

It's almost one of my favorite days of the week: Price Comp day!

It's the day I sit down, stuff pancakes into my kids' hands and stare at my computer until about 11am, looking through the ads for the cheapest prices on groceries.

And you think my life is dull! Pshhh.  (Ok, so perhaps it is to an EXTENT, but c'mon- price comps are EXCITING!! No?)