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Online Coupons and Other Ways to Save Money with Social Media

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Social media isn’t just the soul-sapping time-waster that haters make it out to be. It can actually be a very useful tool to keep in touch with friends and family, keep up on the latest news/gossip, and keep your wallet a bit thicker than it might have been.

Social media can be a great money-saver, in many, many ways!

Deals and Steals

First of all, pretty much all of your favorite companies are on social media. And most of them offer discounts, giveaways, online coupons and promotions exclusively on their Facebook or Twitter accounts. Start by following some of the companies you love most in order to catch these sweet deals.

Groups, organizations, foundations, and even celebrities love to hold competitions, promote special events, and give away prizes to their followers. Keep an eye out for interesting prospects, and enjoy your booty!

Just be sure that you don’t get carried away. These deals can help you save money on things you need or were going to buy anyway – but they can become a curse in disguise if you get addicted to the deals online and buy things you don’t need.

Save on Communications

Another great way social media can save you is in the phone bill. This tip doesn’t require any special online coupon. Rather than spending hundreds on international phone calls or even paying top price for your in-country cell phone plans, social media can help you cut down on your paid communications.

There are a lot of texting, calling, and video chatting capabilities and apps on or associated with social media sites that can help you sidestep expensive bills. Some people have even worked out a system where they buy an unlocked phone, a Wi-Fi hotspot, and use free social media as their primary mode of communications.

Keeping in touch without paying for an expensive phone plan? Sounds like heaven! And with a little planning, it can be reality!

Promote Your Business

If you happen to have your own business, or even a hobby that you can sell, use social media to get the word out! Advertising for your business doesn’t have to be as expensive as buying a radio ad or newspaper spot—market your business for free using social media instead. After all, that’s probably where your customers are spending most of their time anyway. You can be one of those people offering giveaways, deals, online coupons and steals for your services or products, and you’ll find more and more loyal customers than ever before!

Build Networks

Finally, social media can be a great network builder – especially Twitter and LinkedIn. Being an active member of a social media community can help you build ties with people in high places, who can help you get better jobs, meet vital people, get you free concert tickets, and even help you win over sponsors!
Just remember to be tactful, grateful, and contribute what you can to the good of others. Don’t be a moocher. Nobody likes moochers. You’ll be blacklisted from every useful network online if you are.

Make Social Media your Ally, Not Your Enemy

As you can see, social media can be a great tool to help you save money. So turn what could be a time-wasting distraction to a useful, profitable tool!

How do you use social media to save money and create opportunities for your career? What are some of your favorite online coupons you’ve gotten from companies on social media?

Join the conversation in the comment section below or over at Check City’s Facebook , twitter pages.

How to Score Groupon Deals for the Whole Family

Named for the coupons available for larger groups of people, Groupon is a great place to save money – and not just some spare change. If you’re running a family budget (and not just a personal budget), then Groupon deals can be a great way to save big on those bigger purchases.

Groupon tells you about all of the discounts happening in your area, and some of them you won’t be able to find anywhere else. You don’t want to miss out on all the opportunities it might open up for you!

Here are a few examples of how to score a deal for the whole family on Groupon:

Fine Dining

Whether you’re planning a date night or dinner out with the family, Groupon has the deals that will make the night both extravagant and affordable. Go to the restaurant you’ve always wanted to with discounts as much as 50 percent or more. You can even experience dining like never before with discounts at truly unique venues, such as a murder-mystery themed restaurant. You never know exactly what dining adventure you’ll find on Groupon!

Beauty

Treat all the girls with a manicure/pedicure date for less than you’d usually pay for just yourself. One of the most recurring Groupon deals is for spa treatments. Get a relaxing massage or clear up your pores with a cleansing facial. You can truly be stress-free with the kinds of discounts you find on Groupon.

Groupon Travel Deals

Take the whole family out for a fun day of laughing and bonding with the group activities posted on Groupon Travel. Oftentimes, expensive attractions don’t get enough coverage or participants to cover the cost of what they’re providing, and they start to lose money. This is where Groupon comes in, raising awareness of the event by giving you a huge discount. Go zip lining, train riding, rock climbing, water rafting, or anything else you can think of at a considerably reduced price with these coupons.

Groupon Shopping Deals

You can find unique Groupon deals that are tailored to where you live. For example here are some of the top searched Groupon Cities according to google. As you can see people search for Groupon Chicago, Groupon Las Vegas, Groupon San Diego and many, many more.
groupon deals

Find discounts on the gardening or hair styling tools you’ve been looking for. Products posted change every day, and allow you to prepare for the coming seasons. Get fresh leis for graduation or Chinese lanterns for fall. Personalize your home with picture frames and blankets with your names or faces on them. Purchase jewelry made from local gemstones or electronics for a discounted price. Whatever you need, you’re bound to save money when you search for it on Groupon.

Home Services

You’ve always meant to deep clean the house the way it really needs to be, but you just don’t have the time or energy. Groupon has you covered! Cleaning, pest control, lawn care, and more are offered at extreme discounts through Groupon deals. Your house will be unrecognizable after all the work you have done and your wallet won’t be that much lighter.

All of this and more is available every single day on Groupon.com. Find the deals that are best for you and your family and save extreme amounts of money while still getting the food, products, services, and experiences that your family needs and deserves. Sit back, relax, and let yourself be pampered – at more than half the price.
What kinds of deals have you scored on Groupon? Tell us all about it in the comments section below.

Save Money Food Shopping This Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is only days away and for many people that means huge grocery bills. While food shopping is a necessity, it can get quite expensive, especially with increasing food prices. Although it may seem that you’re simply destined to continue paying lots of money for your groceries every week, and especially around the Holidays, there are things that you can do to reduce the cost of your food shopping. Read through this list of pointers to start saving during your trips to the supermarket.

Plan It Out

The reason why a large number of people find themselves spending way too much at the grocery store has to do with a lack of planning. While it’s always fun to go to the supermarket and indulge your hunger curiosities, this can quickly add up. Smart people refuse to go grocery shopping while hungry to ensure they only buy food they’re going to need and use. Even though you think you might not need one, take the time to write up a grocery list before you go and stick to it during your shopping.

Eat Healthy

Although healthier food has a reputation for being more expensive, eating healthy will actually end up saving you money. While it might seem cheaper to by the less expensive soda rather than juice, keep in mind that a lot of cheap, artificial foods contain empty calories, and little or no fiber, vitamins, and nutrients (the things your body needs to function). So it’s the continued purchasing of healthy foods that will actually give your body what it needs, making you less hungry in the long run.

Know Your Seasons

You can save big when buying produce if you are knowledgeable about when it is in season. For instance, fresh corn ears are usually much less expensive during the summer than they would be during the winter months. Knowing what types of fresh produce are cheapest during the various seasons can keep you from buying overpriced food.

Use Those Coupons!

While reality TV producers have been sensationalizing individuals who have honed their couponing skills into a powerful cost-reducing force, don’t let their skill level intimidate you. The truth is that anybody can start benefiting from coupons by simply looking through their Sunday newspaper. Be aware of the sales and promotions that your local supermarket is having by staying informed, and you’ll find that you are often able to buy food for a fraction of the regular listed price if you are adequately vigilant.

Buy In Bulk

Getting a membership at a bulk shopping franchise like Costco or Sam’s Club can go a long way towards helping you save on your grocery purchases. Buying in bulk results on lower individual prices for each item, which will be easier on your wallet as long as you make sure that you use all the items that you buy. Cooking in bulk and then freezing the leftovers for later is also another handy tip for keeping your costs down.

People often find that there is no one way to save money on your food shopping, but rather it’s a combination of strategies that will result in a significant difference in the amount you spend each week. So take the time to experiment with these suggestions and figure out what works best for you.

How to Save Money When You Have a Baby

Bringing a new child into this world can be an amazing experience. Whether it’s your first child or fifth there always seems to be a time soon after the baby arrives that you start to realize exactly how much having a child can actually cost. And while you can’t put a price tag on the love that you’ll feel for your new child, it’s always good to be prepared for the actual expenses you’ll be faced with, and figure out how you can save money whenever possible.

You may have been somewhat prepared by getting the nursery all ready, saving up on diapers, or just scrounging around to get all of the necessities. Here are some ways that you can save when you have your baby.

Freebies at the hospital and pediatricians

Hospitals are solicited all the time with offers from hundreds of companies that sell baby products. Many times these companies offer coupons with free trials or with special offers. This is definitely a good time to start using coupons especially for diapers. If you have questions about these samples and other offers, talk to your nurse. They all know but sometimes forget to let you know about them. In addition to coupons these companies usually provide hospitals and pediatricians offices with free samples of their product which they will freely give to you, all you have to do is ask.

Clothing

Everyone wants to start buying baby clothes in advance. The problem is that these little babies end up growing a lot faster than what we are planning and you end up throwing those cute clothes away the first month. If you are thrifty and understand that other people are going through the same issues, you will be able to pick up on when people need to get rid of their baby clothes and you will be able to pick up on some good deals.

Don’t buy the shoes! They are babies and however cute those shoes are they just aren’t worth the price especially when your baby doesn’t walk. There are always good prices on booties and they can keep their feet just as warm outside.

Baby shower

Make sure you invite all of your friends to it! This is a great opportunity for friends and family to show their love and support by helping you start out. It is definitely something you will be grateful for so make sure that you plan it out in advance. If you get a lot of things that you can’t use make sure that you take them back as soon as possible as many merchants put a time limit on returns.

Go bulk

When you are buying diapers, wipes, or anything else you need in bulk, make sure that you get it at your local wholesaler. This can save hundreds each year. This idea of going bulk can be as effective as using coupons to take care of some of those necessary expenses.

Baby classes

Many parents spend hundreds of dollars each month to put their kids through special programs like music classes or special preschools. There are hundreds of free opportunities out there. For instance, libraries offer reading times or other fun classes for younger children. Sometimes they offer classes for infants as well. Another thing that many parents on a budget choose to do is have their kids go to college campus. Some colleges actually have child development programs that require students to work with children often. Sometimes these playgroups can be free or at least half the price.

There are many different options for parents on a budget. It is most important to realize that proper planning and budgeting is essential though. Also, keep in mind that the due date your doctor gives you is an estimate so the baby might end up coming a bit early. If you find yourself in a situation where your baby gets here before you’ve had a chance to get all the essentials Check City can help with a cash advance or payday loan to get you the money you need.

Successfully Saving for Raising Children

Are you thinking about having kids? If you know that you want to start having kids, you should be sure that you are financially prepared for children. It is important that you take time to assess how much children are going to cost and understand what financial commitment a child will bring. As you consider the cost of raising a child, you will have a much better understanding of when you are going to be in a financial position that will enable you to be able to provide for your child.

Children Aren’t Cheap

It has been estimated that a child now costs $234,900 to raise for 17 years. This includes the cost of food, shelter, and other necessities. This means that annually, children cost right around $13,000. Depending on the child’s age, the cost of the child will fluctuate. The most expensive part of raising a child is paying for housing and the second most expensive part of raising a child is paying for child care.

So, if you have decided that you want to start having children, saving money to ensure you are able to provide for your children properly throughout the time that you are raising them will be beneficial. If you want to start saving money now, to ensure you have money for children, there are some simple ways that you can adjust your spending habits to ensure you are able to provide properly for your children.

Start With a Budget

First, you will want to set out a budget for yourself. Setting a budget can be a nerve wracking process if you are not used to living within a budget. To start the process, you will want to figure out how much money you need for your necessities. Figuring this out can be difficult, because it means that you have to take the time to determine what is a necessity and what is not a necessity. Often times, people get comfortable paying pills that they do not necessarily need to be paying. You may want to live without cable for a few months or try to go without stopping for a soda on a daily basis.

When you start to assess where you are spending money, you may find that you are able to find a few areas that you can minimize your spending in.

By minimizing your spending in these areas you will be able to start saving money that you can then use when you are raising your child. After you figure out how you are going to save money, you will want to know how to allocate the money that you save. If you have some existing debts such as credit card balances or short term loans, it will be best to allocate your extra funds to paying down those debts before the baby gets here.

The budget that you create for yourself will help guide you when you are spending money. Knowing when and where to spend money can be just as tricky as learning how to save your money. There are many people that do not give thought to where they are spending their money when it comes to things that they need. Although you may need gas, it is important that learn how to budget your gas and your money for your gas. By doing this, you can be sure that you are not spending an excessive amount of money on your gas throughout the month.

You Can Eat For Cheap

Food is another great example of an area that may provide you with the opportunity to save money. Many people do not realize how much money they waste when it comes to the food that they are purchasing throughout any given month. It is important to understand how you are going to start mitigating the cost of your food. Often times the first step to saving money when it comes to your food is to stop eating out. Planning a menu and doing your grocery shopping on a consistent basis will help you save a lot of money when it comes to your food.

Start by creating a menu for a week. Include all of the meals and snacks that you would eat throughout the day and make sure that you plan for food that you know you are going to eat. Once you have your menu, you can then make a grocery shopping list to ensure you have all of the ingredients for the meals. Going to the grocery store once a week may feel like a lot, but it is a great way to shop for yourself and ensure that you eat everything you have purchased before going out and purchasing more.

Although it may be a little nerve wracking to think about the money that you will need to raise a child, if you plan well you can be sure that you are able to provide for your child throughout the seventeen years that he/she is in your home.

3 Secrets to Smart Couponing

There’s a lot of money to be saved out there by companies looking to outdo each other for your business. The problem is that most people aren’t taking advantage of the opportunity to save.

Many families walk into a store, move down the same, familiar aisles, and purchase the same, familiar products without any prior investigation as to what deals they could be using. Every week it’s the same thing over and over again.

What they could be missing out on is twenty to thirty-five percent off on everything they’re purchasing, if only they had paid attention to the coupons out there. Couponing seems like such a hassle though that many people don’t think about putting in the effort.

Obtaining coupons from any source is often considered junk mail and is discarded with the credit card offers. Anything that comes to your email box is marked as spam and ads online are ignored. The idea of searching through the coupons can be overwhelming, and hence many people are content to live out there days without them.

Changing that up can not only be worth it, but absolutely necessary should you need to decrease your budget in any way. The following are a few secrets to help you get into the couponing world and how to use your money smart.

Get Coupons Sent Directly to You

First, sign up to receive coupons from places you like to shop at. There are a number of sites that offer you coupons for your favorite stores. Find the ones that offer the products you’re looking for and subscribe to their email service. Make sure you check your email.

For the stores nearby that you want to save at, ask an associate if there’s a way to have their ads sent to your house. Get on their mailing list and check their ads often for things you need.

Don’t Go Overboard

Second, beware of the temptation to buy too much of one item. It’s easy to be tempted to buy twenty boxes of cheerios because coupons discount them to the unrealistically low price of $2 a pop. Although it’s true that you will save money over the coming months, you will walkaway having spent $40 plus tax when you only planned on spending $4.

Coupons can be a budget killer in this way because they’ll make you end up spending more on food than you originally intended. If you have a bit of extra money to spare then this might be worth it. For everyone else though it definitely isn’t.

The key is to think outside the deals. You may end up with more food at the end of the day, but you could also end up in financial trouble at the same time.

Consider first your budget, and then decide how much of that one item you want to purchase within that budget. You don’t want to be caught in the “savings” trap that would have you spend more money than you intended.

Clean Up, Stay Focused

Third, unsubscribe to couponing sites you no longer need, especially if you were simply targeting a specific product. Say you were looking for a good TV. You targeted a few suppliers, like Best Buy, RC Willey, and Walmart and subscribed to receive their coupons. You found one that would work for you and purchased it immediately, only now you’re stuck receiving obnoxious coupons from all three of these companies.

Unsubscribe from the services that you no longer need. Get rid of the Best Buy, RC Willey, and Walmart email blasts and clear out your inbox again. You don’t have to receive all that junk mail. There is always a way to keep it from coming through.

Shop Around

Fourth, shop around. Definitely take advantage of the deals out there, but don’t feel like you’re suddenly a slave of whatever company offers the most deals. Always be on the lookout for better deals. As said before, the companies are constantly trying to undercut each other for your business. Be a bit hard-to-please at times to save money. You owe your allegiances to no store, so don’t let them make you feel like you owe them the business.

Also don’t grow comfortable with one store. Just because Smith’s has continually given you low prices as a part of their club doesn’t mean that they will always have the cheapest prices. Always shop around to save money.

Don’t Spend More on Gas Than You’re Saving

Fifth and finally, don’t get too crazy with the number of stores you visit. For the money you would save visiting ten different stores for your groceries, you would lose in gas getting there. Pick a maximum of two or three stores to shop from that are all close together so you can actually save money.

Tired of the Annual Tax Hassle?

It’s that time of year again… TAX TIME! This year instead of sifting through those shoe boxes full of receipts in your closet and trying make sense of stacks of tax forms, come down to your local Check City and see how simple taxes can be with Lighting Tax. With Lightning Tax one of our friendly, experienced tax professionals will guide you through the entire tax preparation process.

Our Licensed Tax Professionals Will:

  • Get your Taxes Prepared and e-Filed
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  • Help you cash your tax refund check today for a low rate

Tell a Friend and Get Paid!

In addition to taking advantage of our Lightning Tax services yourself, you can also make money by referring your friends and family to Check City to get their taxes done!

How it Works:

  1. Refer a friend to Lightning Tax Services
  2. Your friend completes their taxes with Lightning Tax
  3. Your friend pays the tax preparation fee in full
  4. We will send you a prepaid Visa card loaded with $20.00*
  5. Your friend will recieve $10 off of their tax preparation fee

What else should I know?

  • You do not need to accompany you friend to the store when they complete their taxes
  • The friend you refer must be a first time Lighting tax customer and not from the same household as you
  • You do not need to be a Lighting Tax customer to refer a friend, but you do need to be a Check City customer
  • You can refer as many friends, acquaintances or family members as you want
  • Offer not valid with any other promotions

*certain fees apply with the use of prepaid Visa card

5 Awesome Tips on How to Coupon

Coupons are a great way to find great deals and save money. When used correctly, coupons can save you a great deal, especially when used on a frequent basis. Due to the connected nature of the world that we live in, getting coupons for deals is easier than ever.

Today, people have a wide access to a lot of different coupon options when they are looking for a deal. Along with the coupons which might be found in the mail or in the paper, there are also a lot to be found on the Internet. Majority of businesses offer coupons because they are beneficial for both the retailer and for you. There are many ways to coupon, and here are some great tips on how to coupon!

Sunday Paper

If you grab the Sunday Newspaper, you can usually find an entire coupon section. You can sort through the coupons you are most likely to use. You can cut them out and take them to your supermarket on your next visit. If you prefer having the physical coupon, then this is a great way to learn how to coupon.

Coupon Software

In today’s world, you no longer have to wait for the Sunday paper. Many websites now allow you to print your coupons. With these sites, you can stay current on the latest offerings. All you need to use these sites are a computer and a printer!

Get the App!

Today, everyone is most likely carrying a smartphone that offers apps. There are many apps that offer great coupon opportunities and help you how to coupon. The best part about it is, you don’t even have to print anything out. They are all electronic and at your fingertips.

In the Mail

Often, you can receive the Sunday paper coupons in the mail. If you have a Post Office Box, you can go to the counter and ask for the local coupon ads and receive very beneficial coupons.

Make sure when you are couponing that you buy necessary items you need and you will use in the future. Couponing can be challenging when you buy unnecessary items that you will end up throwing out and wasting your time and money on. It is often hard to “say no” to a great deal that is being offered, but if you’re not going to use it, then you aren’t saving any money.

Rewards Programs

Chances are most of your favorite restaurants, grocers and stores offer a rewards program or a punch card. When you go to purchase your items, always make sure to ask the employee if their store offers rewards programs. Rewards programs are a great way to save money and receive great incentives and free items. They are also a great way to find coupons. You want to be able to save while making the purchases that you need. Make the effort and enjoy the rewards which follow right after!

We hope you have learned a lot on how to coupon. Thank you for reading!

Save Money by Couponing with These 5 Tips

Save Money with Coupons!

Coupons are a great way to find great deals and save money. If properly used, coupons can really help you save a lot of money. I know you may be thinking, “Couponing is such a hassle.” But in this interconnected world we live in, couponing is actually easier than ever.

Today, you have access to many different couponing options. Yes, we just said that. You can find coupons outside of your local newspaper! How, you may ask? We are here to show you. Here are some great tips to help you save money by couponing.

Sunday Paper

The good old paper will always be there for your couponing needs. If you take the Sunday Newspaper, you can usually find an entire coupon section. You can sort through the coupons you are most likely to use and cut them out.

Get the App!

In today’s world, you no longer have to wait for the Sunday paper. For most people, coupon apps are the most convenient way to coupon. There are dozens of great coupon apps out there to choose from. Research and find one that best fits your needs!

Your phone is most likely with you at all times, so the convenience is already there. Don’t wait, save money by couponing today!

Coupon Software

Although apps are very convenient, some people prefer a physical copy of their coupon. No worries, we have you covered. Many websites now allow you to print your coupons. With these sites, you can stay current on the latest offerings. All you need is a computer and a printer!

In the Mail

Don’t worry, there is another great couponing method! The mail! That’s right, you can have your coupons delivered in the mail. Don’t search for your coupons, have them find you. Have your coupons delivered to you in the mail and save money by couponing today!

The Extreme Couponer

Learning how to extreme coupon isn’t hard. The extreme couponer will plan for their shopping trip like they are heading into battle, with a well thought-out battle strategy. If you have this level of commitment, you can save some serious money!

Therefore, it is a good idea for people who want to save money to make a habit of using coupons from several different sources in order to get the best results overall. We recommend you try out multiple couponing methods, so you can find different deals to different stores. We hope you have learned how to do extreme couponing!

Always remember, just because you have a coupon doesn’t mean you need the item! It’s important to look for items that you need and use. If you don’t coupon properly, it can possibly have a negative impact. As you learn the tricks of the savvy couponer community, you can save even more than expected. Don’t wait, save money by couponing today!

3 Great Price Matching Tips

Many stores sell the same products for competitive prices. If you go to two different stores and find the same pair of jeans, you will most likely purchase the cheaper pair. Comparing prices is something a lot of people do and can save a lot of money. For some, finding a deal is a hobby and for others it’s a lifestyle. Here are some great tips when you are price matching.

What Costs More?

An argument can easily be made that you will spend more money on gas navigating from store to store than you would by shopping at one store. This can definitely be true depending on the items you are purchasing. In some cases, it’s best to stay in one spot and buy everything you need there. But depending on the items, you will save a lot of money finding cheaper prices at different stores.

Research

The above is true, sometimes you spend more in gas than you would spend by trying to do price comparisons BUT if you do the research beforehand you could save money by comparing prices online and mapping out a plan of action. You can actually find price comparison sites to do your price comparing before you go shopping. You may come to find out that your groceries will be split between two stores.

In-Store Price Matching

Did you know some stores will actually price match with their competitors? If you still want the amazing deals that other stores offer, find a grocery or department store that will price match with their competitors. You will be surprised with how many stores that price match!
Remember, you need to show proof that their competitors are offering a product at a better price. Pull up their pricing on the internet, or bring a coupon. Examples of proof include receipts, coupons, newspaper ads, and some stores will even accept internet pricing.

Price matching can be a good way to save money on your monthly shopping bills. You may have to put in the time to research and hunt down good deals, but there’s no doubt that it will be worth the effort.

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