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How to Save Money by Getting Almost Everything for Free

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Everyone wants to know extra ways to save money, frugal tips for stretching your dollars, and helpful hints for getting by in tough times.  There are so many money saving strategies available, and some of them are overlooked as “too small to make a difference”.  Well my friends, the small things add up to a lot when you are diligent and focused on saving money!

Today’s money saving tip is a collection of small, but very effective, frugal methods for cutting down on household and grocery expenses:  how to save money by getting almost everything for free, including freebies and free samples.

You’ll want to start thinking of freebies as items on a 100% off sale!  We’d all grab up as much as possible if this sale was at a store, wouldn’t we?

Everyone loves getting things for free, and freebies and free items require very little effort to get a HUGE return.  Below, I’ve compiled a strategic list of frugal ways to save money using freebies, free items, free samples, free software, free coupons, free magazines, etc.

How to Save Money by Getting (Almost) Everything for Free

  • Get news of freebies and free items before everyone else.  Home Ever After brings you the best money saving free samples and freebie alerts regularly.  We offer a free subscription to our updates, and we’ll send you the newest info as soon as it’s published.  This means you get our VIP alerts and can request free items before they run out.

Action: Get our freebies RSS feed or freebies email updates now.  Subscribe!

  • Request free samples in the mail.  We bring you the best lists of free samples and free items to request in the mail.  No shipping charges, no credit card numbers, no fees; you request, and companies send you free stuff in the mail. New ones come out all the time and don’t last long. Readers write me frequently asking, “Do you really get anything good?”  In response I wrote a post called Does Free Stuff Really Ever Come in the Mail?, in which I listed out and took pictures of about half of the free stuff I got in the mail for 6 weeks.

Action: View our freebies and free samples here and start requesting now.

  • Pick up free food and other items at stores by combining our printable coupons with store sales. It’s time to get good at watching for store matchups, when you buy things for free by using a manufacturer coupon together with a store coupon or store sale.  In some cases, the store will even OWE YOU money (called overage)!

Action:  Print out our newest printable grocery coupons weekly.

  • Put away your full size products and replace them with samples.  You might laugh about this and think it sounds silly, but let me tell you that I didn’t buy toothpaste from the summer of 2008 to July 2009!  My family has been using up the free samples and toothpaste I “bought” for free at the grocery store all this time.  The fact is that if samples are out where your family will use them, they’ll get used up (instead of getting lost in a drawer or closet somewhere).  And using these free items means you’ll be buying products less frequently, saving you money in the process.  See how I replaced all shower items with free samples here.

Action: Once you start receiving freebies, put your full sized products in the pantry and replace them with samples. Once the samples are used, put the full sized bottles back.

  • Get free magazines to score free coupons for other products.  Magazines often have valuable health, beauty, and grocery coupons inside.  But you don’t have to buy magazines to get them- just request our free magazine subscriptions to start receiving more magazines than you ever thought possible!

Action: Request free magazine subscriptions whenever they become available.

  • Use free alternatives before buying ANYTHING.  I wrote about this before in Top 13 Free Things to Stop Paying For Now.  From toothbrushes to envelopes, there is so much free stuff available to us that we often take these things for granted.

Action: Make a list of current items you pay for, then brainstorm ways for getting the same things free.  Read our reminder list of free things to stop paying for.

  • Get kids’ clothes and shoes for free by trading them on Swap Mamas. This free community allows you to post and trade just about anything – making it a great way to get all the kids’ items you’ll ever need for free (while getting rid of outgrown clothes yourself).  If you can’t find what you need there, check Craigslist for free clothes people are giving away.  Still no luck?  Read our tips for how to save 90% on kids clothes and get them nearly free.

Action: Create a free profile at Swap Mamas and start trading for free clothes and other items.

  • Don’t pay to rent movies anymore – get them from Redbox for FREE or borrow from the library.   Redbox kiosks offer free new release movies constantly. There are free codes all the time, frequently for special events and holidays and some codes that are particular to certain stores.

Action: Visit AHome Ever After regularly to get Redbox promo codes for free movie rentals.

  • Cancel your cable and watch TV online.  YouTube and Hulu have made it ridiculous to pay for cable services.  Watch your favorite TV series online at those video sharing sites or directly from the networks’ sites (Fox on Demand, CBS, and more).

Action: Call the cable company and cancel your subscription as soon as possible.

  • Stop paying for long distance on your phone; switch to free voice over IP services like Skype.  Talk to anybody anywhere for free using your computer.  How could you justify paying the phone company for long distance now?!

Action: Cancel your long distance phone package (if you have one).

  • Use free video conferencing on Windows Live Messenger.  Stop spending money to print and mail pictures, videos, and long letters to your relatives!  You might not have known that Live Messenger has free video conferencing built in right from your chat window, but it does.  Now Grandma and Grandpa can see and talk to the grandkids for free as often as they want, without spending an extra penny.

Action: Download Windows Live Messenger here for free.

In a recession, we’re all concerned about keeping our expenses as low as possible and finding all the ways to save money on household items.  Print out this list or bookmark this page and work your way through the frugal tips to get you on the road to saving money and getting almost everything for free!

How to Save Money By Getting Almost Everything For Free was originally published on HomeEverAfter.com on April 9, 2009.

Tell your friends!Tweet about this on Twitter17Pin on Pinterest0Share on Facebook9Share on StumbleUpon1Share on Reddit0Share on Google+0Share on LinkedIn0

Danelle Ice is an entrepreneur in Los Angeles and mom of 3. She is the creator of HomeEverAfter.com and SimDanelle.com. Danelle is also known as internet personality SimDanelle, the first virtual person. Danelle is a beauty guru on YouTube, vlogger, blogger, and new media darling. She is a current brand ambassador for for Keurig and previous AMD Tech Mom, Kraft Foods Delicious Byte brand ambassador, and Purex Insider.

32 Comments

  1. How to Save Money by Getting Almost Everything for Free … | OddStall.Com
    Apr 09, 2009 @ 18:02:11

    [...] Here is the original post:  How to Save Money by Getting Almost Everything for Free … [...]

    Reply

  2. Lea Ann
    Apr 09, 2009 @ 18:14:11

    Man, what a great list! I love how you have rounded up all of our coupon mommy behaviours into a plan. Great job.

    Reply

  3. Craigslist Proxy
    Apr 09, 2009 @ 18:18:07

    Always has to do with Craigslist in one way or another…

    Reply

  4. Becky
    Apr 09, 2009 @ 22:46:02

    Wow thanks for all of that great information- very helpful. For those of you who are ‘green’ conscious I have just discovered some great ways to save on ‘green’ products, thanks to Josh Dorfman’s latest book “The Lazy Environmentalist on a Budge: Save Money, Save Time, Save The Planet.” This book introduced me to lot of green companies and products while showing me how to live well and save money in ways that also reduce environmental impacts.

    Reply

  5. angela
    Apr 10, 2009 @ 18:11:02

    thanks for the many useful ideas

    Reply

  6. Holly Jahangiri
    Apr 10, 2009 @ 19:19:43

    Very persuasive! I’m not good at clipping coupons (I clip them and walk out of the store with them clutched in my fist, half the time.) But I like free samples.

    Reply

  7. Home Ever After
    Apr 10, 2009 @ 19:32:42

    @Becky- Thanks for the recommendation! Great to find updated info on companies and their sustainability plans.

    Barbi

    Reply

  8. Anne Maybus
    Apr 10, 2009 @ 19:33:36

    Lots of great ideas in your post. Thanks. I like the way you have included an ‘actoin’ for each point, too.

    Reply

  9. Home Ever After
    Apr 10, 2009 @ 19:35:31

    @Angela: You’re more than welcome!

    Barbi

    Reply

  10. Home Ever After
    Apr 10, 2009 @ 19:36:31

    @Holly: I watched a hilarious video of a guy on YouTube talking about why he couldn’t use coupons at the store. He’d take them, but not use them if anyone was looking! I’ll have to find the link to it…

    Barbi

    Reply

  11. LaVonne
    Apr 10, 2009 @ 21:43:02

    another great post. I linked it to my frugal friday list. I do most of those things too but I want this information to get to as many out there that can use it! thanks again!

    Reply

  12. Home Ever After
    Apr 10, 2009 @ 22:26:16

    @LaVonne: Thanks so much for the link love! We’re lucky to have awesome bloggers like you supporting our mission by spreading the word. :)

    Barbi

    Reply

  13. Frugal ways to save | Budgeting Blog
    Apr 14, 2009 @ 18:26:16

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    Reply

  14. Video Conferencing Freeware
    May 05, 2009 @ 22:28:10

    Nice Post. I am a computer engineer and I am working in a consulting management firm. Video conferencing equipments are highly preferred in our office as we have frequent meetings with our clients and personnel in other locations. I will be looking forward for more updates.

    Reply

  15. Mothers Raising Boys » Blog Archive » Breakfast for How Many?
    Jun 29, 2009 @ 05:44:27

    [...] This is a great article with helpful links. Miscellaneous [...]

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  16. Meghashyam
    Sep 06, 2009 @ 20:02:09

    I Very happy I found your site. Thank you.

    I’m currently cutting costs, and the way you’ve written – ‘Action’ after each point makes it very very reader friendly.

    One lingering doubt that suddenly struck me was, – are all these freebies only for people inside the USA? I mean the ones you’ve linked to in the post? specifically rebox, swap mamas, and “free samples list”?

    But I am grateful for your post anyway.

    Reply

  17. Tweets that mention How to Save Money by Getting Almost Everything for Free - Home Ever After -- Topsy.com
    Sep 23, 2009 @ 12:43:35

    [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Danelle Ice. Danelle Ice said: How to Save Money by Getting Almost Everything for Free [...]

    Reply

  18. Kristi
    Sep 23, 2009 @ 17:33:57

    When I was reycling the other day I noticed a huge stack of magazine. I brought them home cut out a huge stack of coupons, read some articles, and have them in a bag ready to take back to the recycling center. Free free and free – love it!

    Reply

    • Admin - Danelle Ice
      Sep 23, 2009 @ 20:54:10

      @Kristi: I love it too! Coupons in free magazines are the best. Thanks for coming by!
      Danelle

      Reply

  19. How to Save Money by Getting Almost Everything for Free – Home Ever After « Netcrema – creme de la social news via digg + delicious + stumpleupon + reddit
    Sep 23, 2009 @ 20:15:28

    [...] How to Save Money by Getting Almost Everything for Free – Home Ever Afterhomeeverafter.com [...]

    Reply

  20. story
    Sep 24, 2009 @ 06:33:21

    I love getting free stuff. I’m in the process of moving now and it hurts me to miss out on some of the free samples available while I’ll be between homes. There are so many things that I haven’t bought for years and it’s time to start building up my stockpile again.

    Reply

  21. Worth Reading Round-Up | theoffertree.com
    Sep 24, 2009 @ 10:51:08

    [...] loved this piece on How to Save Money By Getting Almost Everything Free. I definitely concur. My philosophy is why pay money if you can find a creative way to get it [...]

    Reply

  22. Corrin
    Sep 24, 2009 @ 13:13:22

    Great suggestions in there. There’s a difference between being frugal and cheap, and I’m happy to say I’m learning to be frugal.

    Reply

  23. Angie
    Sep 24, 2009 @ 13:22:19

    Awesome article!! :)

    Here’s a “freebie” tip. Look around for co-ops…..gardens (free veggies) , preschools (YES, free preschool!!!), etc. Usually all that is required is a little bit of your time, but since you’re sharing with so many others, it’s a fun and easy investment! :)

    Reply

    • Admin - Danelle Ice
      Sep 24, 2009 @ 18:07:54

      @Angie: Co-ops are a fantastic way to get organic produce if they have one available in your town. We also take advantage of the farmer’s market for that. I love the idea of free preschool!

      Danelle

      Reply

  24. Petula
    Sep 24, 2009 @ 18:00:03

    Great post! I’ve just started writing down when I get a free sample, win something or get a product to review from a company… every little bit helps. I really like reviewing things that my family actually uses. I can’t wait to get another printer (mine died) so I can take maximum cents off with printed coupons. And I need to get better at matching that up with store sales and whatnot. I have a friend who says that she just can’t seem to get organized with using coupons and whatnot (even though her mother-in-law cleans up at CVS!) I keep telling her to start small/slowly and once she sees how much money she’ll save she’ll be hooked.

    My best money-saving move yet? I think it was the $88 jeans I got from Victoria’s Secret for about $10. I love those jeans. I’ve been wanting some, but that is a ridiculous amount to spend, but $10! Wow! I am really excited about saving money. I’m going to subscribe and mark this post. Thanks!

    Reply

    • Admin - Danelle Ice
      Sep 24, 2009 @ 18:06:33

      @Petula – It does really help to be able to print coupons. There are so many great ones out there. I’m so glad you subscribed!
      Danelle

      Reply

  25. USA Best Credit Report » Blog Archive » Worth Reading Round-Up
    Sep 25, 2009 @ 01:04:06

    [...] loved this piece on How to Save Money By Getting Almost Everything Free. I definitely concur. My philosophy is why pay money if you can find a creative way to get it [...]

    Reply

  26. Mighty Machines are Mighty Fun for Grandkids | SandwichINK.com
    Oct 02, 2009 @ 02:09:41

    [...] Be sure to check over at HomeEverAfter for more Family Friday ideas for you and your grandkids! [...]

    Reply

  27. Barb @ The Forever Neighbor
    Nov 02, 2010 @ 23:47:10

    Great ideas and all I can think of right now is Truett sitting at the table at the resturant and calling the packets “samples” LOVE IT!!!

    Reply

  28. Kaye Swain - SandwichINK for the Sandwich Generation
    Nov 13, 2010 @ 06:43:10

    Terrific tips, as always! :) My kids introduced me to Redbox and Netflix and I love both! Getting free samples is ALWAYS a great idea. AND at SandwichINK, I currently have a great giveaway going – two wireless digital photo picture frames – perfect for family memories along with several great samples of Salonpas pain relief patches. And they are so nice, they have given me links for those who don’t win to still get a free sample of their new pain relief patch! Very cool. Thanks again for an interesting article!

    Reply

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