You may be spending money unnecessarily if you don't consider your options. MoneyTalksNews.com has 10 do's and dont's for where to start looking for savings.
Don't buy new: You pay a price for that new car smell. When you buy almost anything in the original wrapper, you pay twice the price.
Do buy pre-owned: You don't have to buy the world's oldest things but check out Ebay, Craigslist, thrift stores and yard sales for lots of used but usable items.
Don't accept initial offers: Many people just accept the sticker price but have you thought about haggling with your doctor? Sometimes it works.
Do ask for a break: Hotels often give a price break to those who ask and other businesses might, too.
Don't buy brand names: Is the brand name really necessary on your jeans or your cola? You rush for generics at the pharmacy, so why not elsewhere?
Do look for generics: Thousands of products are offered in generic or "house brand" alternatives that could save you money. We're pretty sure there are no discounts for Russell Brand, however.
Don't buy an over-sized home: If the real estate crisis taught us anything, it's the cost of owning a bigger house than you can afford.
Do think small: Extra square footage is a money drain. Consider a home that is right-sized for your needs.
Don't pay interest: Borrowing money costs money and too few purchases will rise in value after you buy.
Do pay cash: Save up and pay cash whenever you can. You'll pay for the value of your purchase and not a penny more.
Don't eat out every night: Many Americans eat out at least three times a week but it's far more expensive than eating at home.
Do dine in: Making your own sandwich, or grilling some fish at home saves money and is often healthier than take-out.
Don't spend on unhealthy habits: A night at the casino can occasionally bring you a win, but more often than not, it's the house that comes out ahead.
Do kick the habit: Quitting smoking saves thousands of dollars, not just in the cost of your smokes but the health care bills that go along with it.
Don't pay for freebies: More people are cutting their cable television bill by watching news and entertainment programs online for free.
Do take advantage of offers: Free airline miles, cash-back rewards, punch cards for a free meal... it all adds up.
Don't turn down free money: When your employer offers a retirement match or a portion of your health care costs, that's money in your pocket.
Do choose your options: Select plans that give you tax deductions today and savings for tomorrow.
Don't pay too much for insurance: You may be over-insured or you may not be thinking about different ways to get the same coverage, for your health, home or car.
Do compare rates and plans: Check not only for coverage limits but higher deductibles, which could save you money every month on premiums.
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Credit: Lara Cooper/Noozhawk.com
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Peter Gaylard/Wikimedia Commons
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Handout . / Reuters
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