How to Know if You're Getting a Good Deal

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Posted on 09/02/2010

Ever wonder what other people are paying for the same products and services you’re buying? Companies have all kinds of marketing tricks to make you think you’re scoring a bargain when in reality you’re really not. Here are some guidelines to help you know if you’re getting a good deal.


Research Common Purchases - Make a list of the items you buy regularly at the grocery store, drug store or big box chain. Do a little research and find out what others are paying for those items. We found this recent price list from MadameDeals.com that lays out the best deals for common pantry items. She suggests paying no more than $.40 for canned veggies, less than a dollar for a box of rice and, at most, $1.50 for a box of cereal.


Calculate the Per Unit Price - Comparing the cost of different brands of the same product can be tricky. Often the packaging sizes are different. Grab a pocket calculator and start computing the per unit price. For instance, packs of diapers can include just 20 diapers while others have more than 100. Simply divide the price by the number of units inside the package to get your unit price. When it comes to diapers many moms say they feel like they’re getting a great deal when they pay $.10 to $.20 per diaper.


Find Average Prices - When investigating car and home repairs, prices can vary drastically depending on where you live and what the issue is. But it still helps to know the average prices for common services. This list lays out average replacement costs for household systems. And Edmunds.com has a comprehensive list of what you’re likely to pay for scheduled vehicle maintenance. It’s a good way to gauge whether or not you’re getting ripped off.


Use a Comparison Shopping Site - There are lots of websites that make comparison shopping super easy. A few to check out are PriceGrabber.com, NexTag.com, and ShopLocal.com. These websites work especially great if you have a specific product in mind and just need to know where you can pick it up at the best price.


Search a Coupon Database - If you’ve ever wondered if there was a coupon available for a product you plan to buy, try searching a coupon database. Websites like AFullCup.com maintain huge lists of available coupons so once you do a search for the item you want you can be confident you’re getting a good deal.


By Alison Storm


Famous Footwear coupon code - In addition to BOGO 50% off site wide, get an extra 20% off site wide with coupon code LABOR20. Expires 09/11/2010.


P.S. from Aeropostale coupon - No need to hunt, 'cause we KNOW this is a great deal! Save an extra 50% off clearance items with coupon code LDCLEAR. Expires 09/06/2010.

* Hot deals expire quickly. This deal may no longer be valid.

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