Washington D.C. – Shopping around during this summer sales event can be a great way to save, but also provides an opportunity to way overspend. Jack Gillis, CFA’s Executive Director, has six tips to help avoid shocking bills next month.
Top Six Tips
Make a List, Check It Twice: Decide how much you can afford to spend on July 15th and 16th and make a list of prices for your anticipated purchases. As you buy, keep a tally of your expenses to help avoid overspending and impulse buys. When you click to buy, it’s very easy to overspend!
You Gotta Shop Around: You can easily save 10 percent or more on most items by comparing prices on different sites. But when shopping around online, be sure you purchase from legitimate and secure sites, carefully review the final payment page, check emailed statements for accuracy, and know the return costs.
Avoid Add-ons: When shopping online, websites will often suggest additional items based upon your purchases. Your savings can evaporate when you buy regular priced extras that pop up during your purchase.
Protect Your Packages: Thieves can follow delivery trucks and grab the packages before you get home. Not only will you lose your package, but they may get your personal information and account numbers. Require a delivery signature or have a neighbor accept or pick up packages if you won’t be home. If okay with your boss, have your items delivered to your work place.
Ship Smart: Use sites that offer free shipping. If free shipping requires a minimum purchase, be sure you need the additional items and that they don’t put you way over the free shipping limit.
Don’t Let Thieves Peek at Your Accounts: ID thieves can hack into unsecure wireless networks and see your personal account and charging information. When shopping online only connect through wireless networks with a security key or certificate—your information will be encrypted, which can help keep it private. If you use a wireless Internet connection at home, be sure that the security features are turned on and set your own password, rather than the default password.