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Print Your Own Money Legally

money We had never thought about this until we read the story about Crissy Thompson. Printing coupons is like printing money. Only you won’t go to jail!

During tough times, when nearly everyone is looking for ways to save money, clipping coupons can make a bigg difference. But many people don’t use coupons.

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Why don’t we use coupons more?

Some people think the only products you can get coupons for are junk. Others feel like they would just buy things they really didn’t need. It takes too much time to find the right coupons. Or it’s just too much of a hassle.

There’s also a stigma associated with coupons – some people feel that only “cheap” people or people who don’t have money use coupons.

But they’re wrong! In fact, Thomas J. Stanley, in his wonderful book The Millionaire Mind, showed that many millionaires use coupons.

Many people may think the savings from coupons are negligible, but they can really add up if you know what you’re doing. It’s just like making more money, only you don’t have to pay taxes on what you save!

Combined discounts save bigg money!

Crissy Thompson has a husband and three kids. Her grocery bill used to be as much as $250 a week. Now she spends as little as $10 a week to feed her family. It seems like she is particularly adept at combining discounts.

For example, she loves “buy 1, get 1 free” deals combined with coupons. The story gives the example of some cereal that cost $3.79, but the second box was free.

Crissy had two $3 coupons for this brand of cereal. That’s another thing we learned from reading this article – one coupon per purchase doesn’t mean “transaction”; it means “item”.

So she paid $3.79 for two boxes of cereal. She was able to use $6 worth of coupons. In essence, she got paid $2.21 to buy that cereal!

Shop for free!

She likes CVS because they have a rewards program called Extra Care Bucks. Extra Care Bucks can be used on your next purchase.

The story highlights a couple of items she got for free – some deodorant ($4.99 less $4.99 Extra Care Bucks = $0 net) and a toothbrush ($3.99 less $3.99 Extra Care Bucks equals $0 net). Combine that with some manufacturer’s coupons and you could get paid to shop!

Don’t wait for your money

Crissy also demonstrated her financial prowess because she wasn’t willing to wait for her money. Since the Extra Care Bucks have to be used on your next purchase, Crissy makes multiple purchases in the same trip! Then she can use her rewards immediately.

Crissy’s 2 cents worth

At Target, you can print out coupons from their web site and use manufacturers’ coupons – 2 coupons, 1 product! That helped Crissy with the transaction of which she is most proud …

She walked out Target’s door with $380 worth of merchandise.

Her grand total out-of-pocket cost … 2 cents!

Like any endeavor in which you wish to succeed bigg, it takes research and some work. However, shopping like Crissy is like putting money in the bank!

Sites to help you save

CouponCrissy       
Crissy’s new web site

Hot Coupon World   
Crissy’s favorite coupon site

GottaDeal       
Another of Crissy’s favorites

CoolSavings 
  
Coupons and more for just about everything, including the kitchen sink!

MyCoupons   
Helps you find the best place to shop while using coupons from their site

SmartSource
       
Focus on groceries. Find online coupons as well as online circulars for your local stores.

Valpak           
Primarily coupons for services and restaurants.

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The Negotiating Table

We know a gentleman who’s bought and sold businesses for years. He closes a deal about every ninety days. He said that every time he buys, he feels like he paid too much. Conversely, when he sells, he always feels that he didn’t get enough.

Negotiating is a nerve-wracking process – whether it’s for a job, a car, a loan, or anything else!

So today, we’ll serve up some delicious tips for negotiating your next deal. Think of it as a three-course meal – an appetizer, the main course, and dessert.

There are two things to keep in mind before we get to our three courses.

  • Know what you want. What are your taste buds craving? What’s your ideal deal? Have a clear picture of this before you start.       
  • Ask for what you want. It may not be on the menu. Ask for it anyway. You never know – the chef might be able to whip it up for you!

Appetizers
You won’t get filled up at this stage, but you will get a taste of what’s to come. During this course, you’re feeling things out. What are they looking for from you? What might they offer?

Will you be working together long-term if this deal is consummated? If so, focus on building the relationship. Look for win / win. And keep this in mind – if they like you, you may get a better deal.

Try to determine how much leverage you have. Why do they want to do this deal? How badly do they want it? Do they have to do it? Who’s in a stronger position – you or them?

Be careful not to put too much on the table during this course. For example, you’ll save things like your price and terms for the next course.

Main course
You may walk away before you get to this course. If you’re still interested, here’s a caveat. Negotiations often stall here. So if you like what you’re hearing, find ways to keep things moving along.

If you get stuck on a point, set it aside and come back to it later. Maybe if you chew on something else, this will be more appetizing later.

Don’t lose sight of the bigg picture because you’re trying so hard to win a point. You may get a morsel but lose the meat!

You shouldn’t concede unless they do so as well. This sets the tone you want. For example, let’s say you’re negotiating your salary. Maybe they can’t quite pay you what you want, but they are willing to give you some additional time off. You may accept that trade-off.

Dessert
You may decide you don’t want dessert – you know you can’t come to terms. But assuming you decide to stay, you’re ready to negotiate all the details. That’s one reason this course can be the most nerve-wracking of all. Plus you’re getting closer to actually committing.

You probably won’t feel fully satisfied at the end. Be happy if they’re equally unhappy!

Ultimately, they may reject your offer or you may turn them down. In either case, what are your options? Keep them open so you have a back-up.

What techniques do you use at the negotiating table?
Share them with us by leaving a Comment below.

Our bigg quote is by John F. Kennedy. We’re sure he had loftier ideas when he said this, but it’s still appropriate.

“Let us never negotiate out of fear. But let us never fear to negotiate.”

So, enter every negotiation knowing that, you don’t have to do it, but don’t be afraid to do it.

In our next blog, we’ll answer a question from a member who wants to know if she should keep her job or buy a franchise. Hopefully by then, we’ll be recovered from this bigg meal! Until next time, here’s to your bigg success!

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