saving the dough :: m’fav dot-coms

I’m a “frugalista” – ALWAYS  looking for fun new ways to save as much as possible on the homefront. Spending as little as possible at the store. These are just a few of my favorite online resources for great savings, and how I use them in practical everyday ways. Take heed dear friends!

swagbucks.com – So, Swagbucks seemed gimmicky to me at first. To be honest, it kinda is. But it works. I use it all the time, and it is legit. Basically, you sign up, and then you use their online search engine and every now and then your searches give you “swagbucks.” There are other ways you can earn points – daily polls, printing coupons, watching movie trailers, and lots more – all on their website. Then when you earn a certain amount you can buy things at their store – like gift cards, electronics, etc.

How I Use It: The gift cards are the only thing that interest me, and the only kind I’ve ever gotten is a $5 amazon.com gift card… well, many of them. It’s the best bang for your swagbuck! It’s like 450 SBs for a $5 amazon.com card, and if you wanted any of those other gift cards that they offer for a higher price, you can actually order them at amazon.com for a better price. I have used them for books, kids stuff, and gifts (Christmas is coming up!!).

Even if you just get like $50 worth of cards over the year – it’s $50 you’ve earned just for searching for stuff online, which you do anyway! Try it.

recyclebank.com – This site allows you to earn points for watching eco-friendly educational videos and taking pledges on actions to “green your life”. When you have earned enough points, you can use them to earn cool rewards.

How I Use It: So far I’ve used it to get some high value coupons, and have gotten several free magazine subscriptions – 2 years of Everyday Food, 1 year of Martha Stewart, and 1 year of Whole Living. Did I mention they were free? 4 years of magazines. Free.

savingstar.com – This is a digital coupon site. You link your Harris Teeter, CVS, RiteAid, Lowes Foods, Food Lion or Kroger shopping cards to your account, add digital coupons, and when you purchase those items at the stores you have linked that savings will go into your SavingStar account. When you reach at least $5 of savings, you get the money back. Actual cash dollars. You can have it deposited straight into your bank account! They also have a Paypal and Amazon gift card option as well.

How I Use It: Well, I haven’t been using it very long – I just reached $4.60 in my account, so no payout yet. Looking forward to that next $.40 to take me to the next level! 🙂

ebates.com – Shop online much? Go to ebates.com first, search for the store you want to peruse, click on the money-saving offer of your liking and shop on. This site will give you cash back on your purchases. ALWAYS check ebates.com before you purchase something at a popular online retailer. Especially if it’s something you were already going to buy, ebates.com will just make the experience that much sweeter when you get $ back from that purchase. Once you have earned $5.01 or more, you get a check during that particular quarter.

How I Use It: To shop. Funny though, it doesn’t include Amazon.com, where I shop with my Swagbucks giftcards. I don’t shop online a TON, and sometimes I forget about ebates.com to be perfectly honest. Then I kick myself. I have heard really good things about it from people that I trust, therefore I confidently recommend it to you! I know I’m looking forward to using it more often, especially with the gift-giving season approaching, and my maternity wardrobe in desperate need of expansion for the upcoming cold weather months!

onekingslane.com – This place is snazzy! One Kings Lane offers all sorts of home goods at wonderfully marked-down prices – art prints, decor, furniture, dishes, kitchen appliances, bed linens… even stationary, toys & luggage. Not every single thing they have works with my budget, nor do I want/need all of the things they offer. However, it definitely makes keeping up a home a little more affordable, and is worth checking out if you spot something you’ve been trying to find for a good price already. Before you head over to one of those fancy over-priced boutiques for a new autumny tablescape, or fancy-shmancy latte maker, (or just wish that you could – HA!) check out One Kings Lane.

BONUS! When you sign up for an account you get a $15 credit off of your first $30 purchase!!

How I Use It: When I signed up, the credit I received was like $10 off of any purchase. I used it to get a set of Tegu blocks for Rhys for Christmas last year. Originally $32 + shipping. Definitely scored them for $8 + shipping from OKL!

Keep In Mind – Each of their sales is only open for a limited time, usually a few days, and there is a limited inventory of each item in stock, so you do have to hustle to snatch up the best deals.

Be sure to check out One Kings Lane on Pinterest to see the myriads of super fun things they offer on their site  – and just for fun inspiration of course.

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