>“Luck” is Making the Good Deals Happen

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Amy Hannold, 
247Moms Frugal Living Editor
It is said that luck is “preparation meeting opportunity”.   While you may hit just the “right” garage sale this spring or happen upon an unbelievable clearance sale, your success in frugality will be longer lived if you approach it with a “prepared” perspective.
Want to find the “pots of gold” deals?  Let’s at what makes luck “happen”: 
Your Satisfaction Comes from Saving Money:  When your decisions are motivated by the cash you can keep in your pocket – you’ve arrived.  Researching, comparing, waiting (yes, it’s tough sometimes), recycling, Freecycling, and other methods create good deals – not debt.  These options also build community, leave healthy legacies, and score us great deals.
See “Printed Paper with Barcodes” as Cash!  Gone are the days when we couponers had to hover sheepishly over our coupon files.  We’re leading the way, as others are waking to the new “chic” (read: necessity) of affordable living.  Even if you can afford to pay more, why would you?  With discipline and a list, coupons can save you money everyday.  Collect coupons and carry them with you!
Virtual Friends Make Luck Happen:   Internet friends can quadruple your chances of scoring a great deal.  To begin, make three new “friends” – making more than three at first can feel overwhelming.  Connect with one local “money-saving” blogger in your area, as deals can be regional.  (247Moms Idea: Begin one for your state/area on our “Forums” page) 
Next, find the most frugal friend you know, and “follow” her (or who she follows).  Create a local community which grows to benefit many of your friends.  Third, is a “filter” service which searches the internet for great deals:  “Yowza” (getyowza.com) or “Nextag” (nextag.com) alert you to sales on your preferred brands/products – or go with you on Twitter and phone apps.
And, Spend Some Time – Luck Will Follow:  Here are a few “five-minute” ideas which will create money-saving opportunities for you:
1.      Call the manufacturer of your favorite product with a comment or question.  Ask for their email club, coupons, samples, and promotions.  Contact your favorite places to shop too!
2.     Sign up at Vocalpoint.com, pssst.generalmills.com, kraftfirsttaste.com, houseparty.com, bzzagent.com, or allyou.com –Some are by “surprise” in your mailbox, others you have to be chosen from applications – following the announcement of a new event.
3.     Spend a few minutes with your home inventories.  You’ll find forgotten gems in there!  Organize, inventory and utilize some creativity with what you find. 
It’s not always easy, being frugal – but the “green” will stay with you longer when you shop smarter!  Instead of a “pinch” today, enlist your friends into making  “green-goals”!  They’ll be glad you did!

Image: Arvind Balaraman / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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