When you get a new house (or have an old one for that matter), there seem to always be projects to do. I seriously think that LD’s and mine is truly a mile long if you were to write it all up with a separate line for everything and used a 10 point Times New Roman font, but it is always evolving so I don’t want to keep a list that long, especially because of all the feelings of inadequacy that would come when faced with a list that long. Anyway, we have a lot of projects and although we have student loans paid off, we don’t just have a lot of money sitting around for projects. We also don’t want to take out more loans to get projects done. So, we have learned a bunch of tricks for reducing our expenses for these projects.
First of all, we try to only buy things when they are on sale. Like with grocery shopping, we try to plan ahead and keep an eye on the weekly ads to determine what project we are getting ready to do. With the exception of lumber, most things from home improvement stores keep really well in the basement. Lumber, unfortunately, has a tendency to warp if left down there for longer periods of time. However, if you have a better place to store it, you might be able to get away with buying that early as well.
Second, we take advantage of rebate offers. In the midwest, we have a store called Menards. Especially in our area, this is a fantastic store as they tend to have the lowest prices and every once in a while have a 11% rebate for everything. You buy your items, fill out a form, send it in, and then they will send you store credit for 11% of everything you buy. I have heard that on occasion gift cards are included in the rebate, but I have never experienced that.
Third, if you have a Home Depot in your area, they have a best deal guarantee. So, if say Lowes, Menards, or another home improvement store have an ad for that exact item at a lower cost, they will match it and then give you an additional 10% off. I think they also match Amazon, but I am not entirely sure.
In addition, you can always use discounted gift cards at home improvement stores. We like to use Cardpool.com (affliated link which gives you $5 off your first purchase). There are other options out there for discount gift cards, but we have never tried them so I would just tell you to be careful.
Another thing to look out for at home improvement stores is their bargain sections. Oftentimes, these are items that someone special ordered and then cancelled, so it is worth a look if you are doing some remodelling project and primarily care about function. I often see vanities included in these sections if you are doing a bath remodel. You never know, that special ordered item that was cancelled might be exactly what you are looking for.
Do you have any other suggestions for saving at the home improvement store? I am always looking for new ways to save. Home projects can get extremely expensive.