Dollar bargains by the case
photo by Al Pavangkanan
Sometimes, sales are so great you want to stock up. But you hate to wipe out the store shelves. The first tip is one solution. You can’t pick and choose exact amounts, but you can buy a lot at one time. I visited the Web site in the first tip and liked that they shared what $20 buys.
EASY BULK BUY: I just found out by looking at my receipt that you can order online in bulk at the Dollar Tree. They sell nonfood items by the case. If you are a serious stocker like me of health and beauty aids and maybe cleaners, you should go take a look. They will do free shipping for store pickup. Can’t beat that! And everything is $1 plus sales tax, www.dollartree.com. — Cricket, Texas
ENVELOPE BUDGETING: I have a great idea for cash “envelopes.” For a cash system budget, you can use a coupon holder — the plastic check file and accordion style. I currently have the Dave Ramsey envelope wallet but will definitely keep this in mind for future use. — D.J., Missouri
CHEAP SHEETS: Buy cheap sheets at Wal-Mart for duvet covers. Sew two together, and put buttons and buttonholes on top. Sew some twill tape in on the sides to tie around the duvet and hold it in place. Also, buy old king- and queen-size sheets at garage sales. Cut them down to twin size, and make a couple of pillowcases from the excess fabric. — Jean, Canada
CHEAPER ALTERNATIVES: Use Oil Dri (clay granules) from an auto-parts store for cat litter. You can also get Scotch-Brite (scrub pads) from auto-parts stores. (Make sure that you get untreated ones.) — Judi, New Hampshire
HOMEMADE CLEANER: For many years, I have used this to clean my floors, walls and bathroom fixtures. I have also checked with the manufacturer of my floors to make sure that it wouldn’t void my warranty. To make it, you will need an empty, covered 1/2-gallon milk container or other container. In the container, mix 1/2 pint of the cheapest rubbing alcohol you can find, 1/4 cup ammonia and a few drops of liquid dish soap, and fill the rest of the container with water. I even put it in my Swiffer WetJet by putting a hole in the top of the soap container. Then you put in a funnel and pour in your homemade soap. I also put it in a spray bottle and spray and wipe any hard surface. This is antibacterial as well. — Judy, Minnesota
WAREHOUSE CLUBS: You can enter the store (without a membership card) and conduct business in three departments: pharmacy, liquor and optical. You just state to the employee at the entrance what you are going to do in any or all of those departments, and that person must let you in without a membership. Why? The products and service provided in those departments are all licensed by the state where the store is located, and therefore no one can be denied by law. You can’t buy over the counter in pharmacy, but any item prescribed by your doctor, including special equipment, can be purchased. All beverages containing alcohol (even those enclosed in gift baskets/boxes) are available to you. You can see the on-site optometrist for a checkup and can take your prescription someplace else for glasses and lenses. –Aubrey, e-mail
Note from Sara: BJ’s accepts manufacturers’ coupons. You can use multiple coupons on multipacks of “individual for sale” packaged items — for example, products such as beverages, soap, cleaners, etc.