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Everyone loves to get something at a discount.

I mean, who doesn’t seriously L-O-V-E a good deal? However, one thing we all need to learn is how to discern if a deal really is the good bargain it seems to be…a good deal has to actually be a good deal.

If you like to shop at a dollar store you might be making the mistake of assuming any item for a dollar is a good deal but that might not be true.

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Here are a few tips to review before your next trip to the dollar store to make sure you are getting the real deals that are offered.

Make a List.
How many times have you run into a dollar store to pick up a couple of items and $76 later, you come out, hands full, with stuff you never intended to buy. You need a list of items to buy so you can avoid mindless shopping and blowing your budget on items you just don’t need!

What items should be on your list:
• Office supplies
• Art/School project supplies
• Books
• Cleaning supplies
• Home Décor
• Party Décor
• Small Door Prizes
• Stocking Stuffers
• Hostess gifts (bath & body lotion, wash, pretty scented items)
• Beauty Products (shampoo, soap, hair accessories, hair spray, cotton swabs, and etc.)
• Batteries (they seem to last just as long as more pricey brands

What should NOT be on your list:
• Medicine, (from a financial perspective alone, 8 pills for $1 isn’t a good deal!)
• Toys
• Plastic Wrap
• Paper products like paper plates, cups, toilet paper – quantity and quality issues make this a no deal.

Something else you should not have on your list is any item you have not priced out prior – for example, food.

A can of vegetables seems like a great buy – it’s just a $1, right? But had you shopped at your grocery store, you could have gotten them for .50 cents or less on sale. It turns out that isn’t such a great deal after all. Another great example of this is meat. Some local dollar stores sell bologna, ham, turkey, etc. for $1. But it’s a 1/8 of a pound so many are paying $8 for a pound of meat! No. Again, any item that you have not calculated at a comparable price at another store should not be bought at the dollar store. Chances are you will be overpaying.

Something to remember; always check the quantity of any item you are buying. $1 for a product simply packaged smaller is not a good deal, even when it feels like it! Run the numbers before you shop!

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