June 22, 2015

How to Buy Quality and Save

I  am on the lower income scale, being new to the work your own hours world.  Today I'd like to focus on how to save money and buy quality.

As you may have found out, buying cheap is not always the best.  Buying furniture at Goodwill may last, but comes with perils of insects and bed bugs (think fleas).  You save money, but at what cost?  Cheap food (Top Ramen) will definitely leave some green in your pocket, but the health care costs come very quickly on that diet.  Now, used clothing can be a good deal, but eventually you will want something new.  And all my shoes are new (and not cheap, since I have plantar fasciitis).

There are some benefits to using cash back cards with your shopping.  For instance, Discover It offers 5% cash back this quarter on Amazon.  They also have Discover Deals, which offers 5% cash back on Wal-Mart Online.  Using various shopping portals, one can discover the best price for the quality one needs.  I can tell you that Wal-Mart Sheets last about one month, while I have had very good luck with Amazon Sheet sets (see Pinzon Sheet Set).

My first comparison example is for Cat Lovers. (The late Siberia and the live Jimmy, they are next to Amazon Box :-)

I can pick up Tidy Cat at Safeway, when on sale, for 6.99 20 lbs.  Living in Seattle, I don't own a car, so I use public transportation and a cart (Kennedy Home Collections Folding Shopping Cart).  The two carts I have now, I purchased from Amazon.  But alas, one has been discontinued.  Tidy Cat is a great deal, yet its dusty and doesn't clump that well.  I prefer cat litter that lists specially designed cat friendly litter, 99% dust free.  And then, we have choices.  A not inexpensive item is Tidy Cats Brand Breeze Cat Litter.  I personally don't prefer pellets, and my cats prefer the dirt feel (so clay litter it is).  I usually purchase (Precious Cat Ultra Premium Clumping Cat Litter).  This litter not as dusty, its well reviewed, and for a few dollars more, is better than Tidy Cat at Safeway.  By the way, Precious Cat Ultra Premium is made by the same folks as Cat Attract Problem Cat Training Litter (40 lb Bag).  The litters made by Precious Cat are better than litters from Wal-Mart and Tidy Cat (from a review stand point).

My second example is also for Cat Lovers, the cat scratcher.  My favorites were the Kong Recyclables from Reber Ranch.  However, I can't get there without a car, and cab fare negates any savings.  The kind I buy are not available on Amazon, so I soon found some kitty favorites.  Again, highly rated, well reviewed, and at the top of the search list, PetFusion Ultimate Cat Scratcher Lounge (Condo Style, Walnut Brown).  That is a little spendy for my taste, though something I might put on Wish List.  I've found a great deal, some lasting power, and kitty heaven with Catit Style Scratcher with Catnip (Jungle Strip Lounge) and/or Catit Scratcher with Catnip (Wide).  When these scratchers are not add on items, I just buy them separately.  When they are add ons (like now), and since I have multiple cats, I usually buy one Litter, 2 of the :Lounges, and one Wide Scratcher (for the bedroom)..

I hope these examples demonstrate how starting with the high quality items, then narrowing down to cheaper, yet better quality items, saves money and provides the things you need without having scratchers fall apart within two weeks (trust me, the wide scratcher is around a year old).  And, you won't find quality this cheap at Wal-Mart, nor do you wish to buy these items at Goodwill. Any Questions? :-)

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