Discover Your Own Discounts

Need money? Find it. Want to create a bit more breathing room in your budget? Make it. Looking for a way to get a better price? Discover it. As the saying goes, you can’t get something for nothing. But if you’re willing to put in a little effort all of the above can be yours.

Come right out and ask for better rates. The squeaky wheel really does get the oil, and in this case the better APRs. Banks and creditors aren’t in the business of helping you, no matter how hard they try to spin it in ad campaigns. They’re out to make money, and off of you. If you’ve got decent credit and you make your payments on time, don’t be shy about calling up and directly asking for a decrease in your interest rate. This usually won’t just happen, so don’t take it for granted. Call up and request it, and endeavor to do it every quarter or so.


Call your service companies and ask for discounts. If you’re a loyal customer in good standing, take advantage of that. Call your cable company, your cell phone service provider, your Internet service provider, anyone who you pay monthly for a service. Ask if they are currently offering any promotional pricing that you could take advantage of. If they’re trying to lure in new customers with great prices, you too should be able to take advantage. It certainly isn’t good business to penalize your current customers for not leaving. And not trying to take advantage of such offers is paramount to throwing good money away. (Psst! It doesn’t hurt to remind them of all the great offers their competitors are currently offering to lure away great customers like yourself. If they want to keep you, they should at least be willing to extend to you the same money saving offers provided to potential new customers.)

Opt for floor models or be willing to accept minor flaws to reap big savings. Is there a loose button on a shirt? Is there a floor model available without a box? Has a product been returned, but in fine condition? If you’re willing to accept a little less than new, then you might as well be welcoming cash back into your wallet because all of these are examples of just how to go about getting a discount on items that might not currently be on sale but you need immediately.

Know the purpose, but go somewhere or to something else. Ever heard the saying, “There’s nothing new under the sun?” Well, many retailers and manufacturers have, and they’re repackaging many of the same items and marking them with insanely different price tags, too, depending upon the store department it’s found in and what it’s intended to do. “Disposable shop towels” in the automotive department is a fancy way to say “paper towels” and you bet your bottom dollar the associated costs of each are just as different. I’ve even seen fancy packaged disposable “boogie wipes” marked with a price three times as high as the exact same disposable baby wipes right next to them. If you’re looking for a deal, be open to looking somewhere—and sometimes even at something—else.

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Author Info

This post was written by Shannon M. Medisky. Shannon is an educator turned parent turned writer and focuses on sharing new and innovative ways to not just survive, but thrive on empty. Visit to learn more. Her newest book The Complete Idiot's Guide to Stretching Your Dollar is available in bookstores now.

One Response to “Discover Your Own Discounts”

  1. Phone Bill Cut |  Aug 31, 2012 at 2:43 pm

    Most people can get large discounts on their cell plans by switching to prepaid or no-contract cell phone plans, which are great options if their carriers won’t budge on price. Actually, they are always great options!