My 10 Favorite Ways to Get Things for FREE
There is nothing more frugal than getting things for free! I've compiled a list of my favorite ways to get things for free, and I hope you are able to take away at least one new tip or resource from it.1. Ask for Free SamplesIf you want a great way to get your free samples by making one weekly blog visit, then you need to visit "Freebie Friday" at The Motherload on MomAdvice.com. I'm lucky to get to contribute to Amy's fabulous list each week, and there is surely something for everyone on the list! Free samples have to be my favorite way to get things for free because they don't require a visit to the store, just a website. I spend about one minute on filling out a request form, then a few weeks (or months) later my free sample appears in my mailbox. It's always a thrill because I am surprised by when I get it and what I get. Sometimes my free sample turns into a full-size product, and I often get great coupons with my free samples. If you missed my previous guest post, here is my list of Top 20 Free Samples.
2. Be a Fan
Love a product? Tell the company by calling their customer service department, joining their "fan club" on their website, sending them an email, or writing them a letter. Companies love to hear from their fans and often reward those customers with coupons and free samples. It never hurts to ask for things we want! What company am I a big fan of because they keep mailing me free products? Find out here.
3. Enter Sweepstakes
If you are interested in a chance to win some bigger freebies, than you may want to enter sweepstakes. I just recently started blogging about sweepstakes that offer 1,000+ prizes as a good way to have a good chance of winning something. Find out what sweepstakes I am entering this week.
If you are willing to wait awhile to get your money back - then take advantage of full-price refunds, or free-bates! It does take a little bit of time and diligence in submitting your rebate request, but this is a wonderful way to try new products for free. And there is a blog called Hooray for Free-bates! that is dedicated to this specific type of freebie.
5. Do the CVS and Walgreens deals
Money Saving Mom is the best resource to find out how to make the CVS and Walgreens rebates and coupons work for you to get you lots of free stuff and maybe even make some money.
6. Shop at your Grocery Store
Yes, you sometimes have to go shopping to get some things for free. Your local grocery store is a great place to find things for free, but you have to be smart about combining sales, markdowns, coupons, rebates, and in-store promotions. Bloggers love to blog about the weekly deals they scout out, and "The Grocery Gathering" at BeCentsAble is where bloggers are coming together twice a week to bring you the deals at over 15 stores.
7. Utilize Local Forums
Depending on where you live, there may be local forums which allow people to list items that they are giving away for FREE. Some of the more widely used forums include Craig's List and Freecycle. If you are looking for maternity, baby, and kid items then you will want to find out if Freepeats has come to your city yet.
8. Go to Garage Sales
Growing up I went to garage sales all the time with my mom and I learned a lot about this treasure hunt for the frugal-minded. All good garage sales have a "FREE" section and you may be surprised at what you can pick up. What is junk to one person is a treasure to another. I have a framed poster print of Van Gogh's Sunflowers in my living room that came from the "FREE" section of a garage sale - I did absolutely nothing to it, just hung it on my wall.
9. Talk to Friends and Neighbors
It always pays to talk to people you know - your friends and your neighbors - because these are the people who will think of you when they are trying to find a good home for some of the items that they are sending out of their house. And if you are looking for a specific item, tell everyone you know! It is amazing how people will network and soon you will hear of a friend of a friend who is looking for a good home for the item you are seeking.
10. Make It
Sometimes we have to use our brain to create what we want by using what we have on hand. You can transform or craft something to create a new item for your use. It's free to make, it just takes some rolling up of the sleeves, gathering of materials, and spending some time to make it. I made a decorative screen to hide the cords behind our entertainment center using cardboard, cardstock, and tape. It didn't take expensive materials or skilled crafting, just some brainpower to solve the visual eyesore that was bothering me.
Please share your favorite tips and resources for getting things for free in the comments.
-Heather at Freebies 4 Mom.com