Deal sites – avoid or jump on the bandwagon?

A Shopping Cart Full With Various Groceries; spending money you make
AJ: I learned the value of a good deal early on in life. Making money doesn’t come easily in life and spending it should be thoughtfully done. Being mindful of your spending and watching your budget doesn’t mean you’re cheap just more crafty about how you spend and when.

I like to think that I’ve mastered the art of the deal, especially when it comes to clothing, shoes and accessories. My go-to options online for saving money are:

Rue La La
Rue La La.

Haute Look.



Nordstrom Rack

Crate & Barrell’s Outlet Online
Crate & Barrell Outlet.

For Home stuff it’s Joss & Main.
Joss & Main.

For Kids and Baby stuff it’s Zulily.

Here are the keys to success:

Know what you pay for items
Be aware of what you typically pay for something. If it shows up on one of the deal sites, be prepared to purchase if the price is right. Many a time over the last five years we have purchased something from a deal site that hadn’t been part of the month’s budget. If the price makes sense, then we’ve shifted our expenses and redirected course with the rest of our monthly plans to stay on track. Long-term, it helps us be better off with the purchases we would otherwise need to make. This was a really difficult concept for KJ early on in our relationship. We had a whole lot of “but I don’t NEED new jeans right now” conversations over why I would buy him jeans that were half-price when he had perfectly good jeans already. Now I think he gets scared if he doesn’t have multiples of his favorites in his closet on standby for the day he rips his favorite pair or jeans or finds a hole in his favorite shoes. Being at the mercy of the retailer whenever you HAVE to shop vs. when you WANT to shop is power I’m not willing to surrender.

Don’t give in to impulses
I ebb and flow on this one because sometimes impulse purchases wind up being awesome deals that completely meet your needs later on. Generally speaking, though, don’t spend significantly on items that weren’t even in your consideration set for future purchases.

Know what is on the fritz
What items in your wardrobe or house are on the fritz? Know what it is that is getting worn out or needs to be replaced (emphasis on needs and not just on what you want). Buy only what you need, and you’ll save money for when the time comes to replace other items.

Know how to get things at the last minute when you do need them has saved me so many times when I suddenly realize I’m out of supplements or I completely forgot to buy a wedding gift for a wedding that’s 3 days from now. We’re Prime members, and I value it to the core of my being. Rarely is Amazon priced higher on my supplements than other sites, and it’s always cheaper than my local health foods store, so to have it delivered to me the next day without having to sacrifice my own time is a dream come true. Save money by shopping around and knowing where the deals are.

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2 thoughts on “Deal sites – avoid or jump on the bandwagon?

  1. I used to do impulse buying before, but now I can say that I’m smarter when it comes to buying. Now I know what is the difference between needs and wants.

    • The hardest thing for me has been filtering through my right to want, if you will, and my desire to further our long-term goals as a family. It’s hard to work 50+ hours a week and not feel like you’re allowed a vice that requires spending money. The benefit of having long-term goals is that it keeps us all accountable to the big picture vs. the everyday desires that might pop up.

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