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Saving Money: When Is a Deal Not Really a Deal?

Written by Teri Cettina on February 18, 2013 in Family Money  |   No comments

One of my latest bargain finds is batteries at my local dollar store. I’ve been buying packs of eight AA and AAA batteries for—you guessed it—$1. That’s a huge savings compared to the $8 per eight-pack at my local grocer. However, I’m starting to wonder…

saving moneyOne of my latest bargain finds is batteries at my local dollar store. I’ve been buying packs of eight AA and AAA batteries for—you guessed it—$1. That’s a huge savings compared to the $8 per eight-pack at my local grocer.

However, I’m starting to wonder if the dollar store batteries are wearing out more quickly than usual. If that’s true, I’m not getting as good a deal as I thought. Even if I spend less up front, I may have to buy the batteries more often. Plus, I’m adding more disposable batteries to the landfill, and I don’t like that idea.

You’ve probably faced this kind of purchase before and wondered: Is this bargain really a good deal? Here are some situations in which it might not be:

It was found with similar products on a grocery end cap.

Picture 5 of 7

You’ve probably seen something like this: A name-brand pasta, sauce, drink, and packaged dessert for a special price. However, in many cases, you could spend less by buying cheaper brands of each item—as well as by skipping the food items you didn’t intend to buy (like the dessert).

When have you found that a deal is not really a deal? Share your shopping tips in the comments below.

Teri Cettina is a mom of two daughters and freelance writer who specializes in personal finance and parenting topics. She blogs at Your Family Money. Follow her on Twitter: @TeriCettina.

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