Money-saving secrets to pay less for almost anything

Whether you're shopping for a furniture, a best-selling book or a car, you can always cut costs by using clever money-saving secrets.

Money-saving secrets to pay less for almost anything

Learn the sales cycle

Just as grocery stores put certain brands of orange juice or ice cream on sale at regular intervals, department stores usually discount merchandise five to eight weeks after it was originally displayed. Pay attention to when new items arrive, and plan to save big money several weeks later.

Make the Sunday paper pay for itself

If you find valuable grocery coupons in your Sunday paper for items that you use frequently, buy a few extra copies of the newspaper simply for the coupons.

  • You'll be particularly smart to buy more papers if the items are part of a "buy one, get one free" sale — you can often use two coupons because you're buying two items. Just be sure that you use the coupons before their expiration dates.

Read into savings

With all of the possible ways to save on books, you should never pay full price for one again.

  • The best way to save on books is to visit your local library and read them for free.
  • If you prefer owning books, you can always find discounts online.

Shop for cars late in the day

Aim for about 5 p.m. on the last day of the month — car salespeople are often more motivated to make deals at that time in order to hit their sales quotas for the month.

  • Time your late-day visit for the end of each quarter (March, June, September, and December).
  • Don't forget to check out all rebates and incentives.

Check the weather before buying furniture

You'll find great deals on sofas, tables, bureaus and so on in January and July, when retailers clear out stock to make room for new lines of furniture.

  • Along with sales, you'll find salespeople more willing to negotiate.
  • Similar to car dealerships, furniture stores try to hit quotas at the end of the month, so you can save more then, too.
  • Don't forget that delivery and assembly fees can be negotiated.

Get a student discount

Just because you're not 18 doesn't mean you're not a student! Sign up for a community college class and ask for student benefits at museums and theatres, for cell phones and computers, and more.

  • Don't forget that many organizations offer employee, senior and military discounts — so always ask.

When it comes to buying big or small-ticket items, using these tips to save a little bit here and there can really add up.

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