Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Thrifty Thursdays

Instead of sharing what I've done to be thrifty this week I'm going to share some ways that you can be thrifty instead:
1) Be aware of discounts you can get because of you or your spouses job (military families get many discounts when they show Military ID places such as Sprint, Sea World, Burger King/Arby's {not all locations})
2) Be a card carrier....yes those grocery store cards and drug store cards are REALLY WORTH IT! Even book stores now offer club cards.  Sears has a card now and even a club for people who buy items in the baby section only (you get money back to spend in the store!)
3) Say NO to the credit cards stores offer, signing up for too many of these can effect your credit scores and it's not worth the discounts if you don't shop there religiously, stick with a credit card from your bank that offers great rates and No annual fees if possible.
4) Never pay more than a 3rd of the value of something new when your buying used unless it holds value such as collectibles...another wards if you are at a garage sale and looking at a shirt that is $15 new don't pay more than $5 for it used. As a rule of thumb with clothing though I tend to NEVER spend more than $1 on a item of clothing. People will make comments like, I paid $45 for it new....well guess what it's not new now and I'm using it to make a patch work I don't want to pay $10 for a piece of fabric I'm cutting up....Often if you make a offer and it's the end of the day people with take it.
5) Know when to call something JUNK. I've seen things sold at garage sales and thrift stores that just drives me crazy, not sure why these items are not just thrown away. Items that I consider JUNK and should be trashed but often are attempted to be resold:
1) Potty Seats for toddlers
2) Litter Boxes for kitties
3) Used sponges, brooms, mops (lets just say if it were used to clean up someone else's germs why spread their germs into your own home?)
4) Pots and Pans (okay you got to know what you are looking for here, NEVER buy used Teflon pans because normally they are already scratched and no good)
5) Painted bowls, painted pottery pieces (Be careful here, if things were made in the early 70's or before they likely contain lead paint)
6) Puzzles in boxes with more than 30 pieces (Unless you plan on counting all the pieces I wouldn't bother if the box isn't sealed your likely missing a pieces, don't want to get home and put it together to find you can't put the last piece of the puzzle together)
7) Used pacifers, bottles, sippy cups (this is just plain gross to me and if you read the labels on most of these products it says to replace often so they don't wear out and pose choking risk, if you buy it used who knows how many days are left in them- these things are cheap anyways buy them NEW)
8) Bathroom Rugs- (Do I need to say why?)
9) Car Seats - Car seats are not meant to be re-used because the safety standards change quickly and if the car seat were to of been in a wreak with the previous owner the frame can be bent and unsafe without you knowing it.
10) Mattresses - These aren't even aloud by law to be re-sold. Crib Mattresses are especially NOT SAFE to re-use this can raise your child's risk for SIDS! A crib Mattress can cost $60 or more but really if you can't afford a $60 mattress what are you going to do when the baby gets here? You have more than that per month to spend on that child. A NEW CRIB Mattress is a MUST HAVE! Target has great firm mattresses for around $80 on the mainland and $100 here in Hawaii. The mattress needs to be firm and fit the crib properly to be safe.

Good things to buy gently used:
1) Clothing (whether it be for babies, children or adults this saves alot of money) - Always inspect clothing well for holes, stains, and too much wear
2) Toys (Always be sure you can clean if before use and check for recalls before giving to your child)
3) Books (Always skim thru the inside of the book to make sure all the pages are there and no markings will keep you from reading it)
4) Baby Gear Items (high chairs, strollers, and play pens) Make sure to look for recalls before using these items used, smell the play pen if you can since you can't wash it make sure it's doesn't smell of smoke since this could put your child at risk for SIDS and ALWAYS put a fitted sheet in the playpen when buying one used.

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