Staying Ahead: Pay Retail Price as LAST resort

If someone says they can't stick to a budget then they simply are not trying. I used to think this too until I sat down and did a full evaluation of my finances and what is really important to me.

One of the methods I used to stay ahead is to shop around for what I need. For example: I need to buy some new clothes. My shorts and jeans are worn and have holes in them. I need replacements but don't have a lot money set aside to go buy all brand new stuff. Instead I look to other sources.

When I go clothes shopping (maybe once per year, I hate it!) I always start at Goodwill. They have a good selections and very affordable. I then look to my local thrift stores to fill any gaps. If I still cannot find what I need I look to closeout stores such as Ross and also check for coupons. Finally if the need is dire I will go to Old Navy (with coupons) and get what I need.

The main point of this, no matter what you are buying, is to buy retail as a last resort. Why pay full price if you don't have too? Use coupons, gift cards, sales, thrift stores, ebay, craigslist, and any other resource you can to get the costs down. Do otherwise is just plain lazy and irresponsible.

Shop smarter not harder!