When you make a purchase, whether small like a phone or large like a television, it’s important to know the store’s return policy.
I tell people all the time that most stores want you as a customer, so stores will do whatever possible to make the customer happy. But don’t try to scam the store. Know the return policy so you’ll know what’s acceptable and what’s not.
Also, check with your credit card company for its warranty policies. Some will get your money back.
When negotiating for a refund, keep your cool. When confronting store management, getting angry will only make the situation worse. Stick to the facts and be respectful.
Keep in mind that the sooner you complain after a purchase, the better your chance of getting a refund or resolving the problem.
Keeping records of your purchase is key to getting refunds. Holding on to your receipts or any other paper will only help. Keep a record of the people you spoke to on the phone, what they said and when you talked.
If those efforts fail, write a firm but polite short letter to the company's chief executive officer. If you don’t hear back in a month, call or write again.
As a last resort, file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau (bbb.org), which will forward your grievance to the company and may act as a mediator.
I use the same philosophy when it comes to coupons. Each store has its own coupon policy. Know that policy. Print it out as a reference if it’s on the store’s Web site.
Here are a few tips to make your checkout with coupons an uneventful experience.
1. Any Internet coupon should be legible.
2. Coupons have to say manufacturer coupon or store coupon on the top.
3. Coupons must have a valid remit address for the manufacturer.
4. Coupons must have a scannable bar code.
5. Coupons must have an expiration date.
6. Internet coupons can be printed in black and white to save money on your color cartridges.
Good rebate deals
Links to the deals are provided at the end of each item
A 20-count package of Purina Pet Gear Training Pads offers a full purchase mail-in-rebate. purina.couponhost.net/rebate/?utm_source=20154.
Buy any two Welch’s spreads and receive a free sandwich keeper. www.welchs.com/promotions.
Buy any three Scotch-Brite botanical disinfecting wipes and get one of them free. www.3m.com/us/home_leisure/scotchbrite/offers/Botanical-Wipes_Coupon.pdf?WT.mc_ev=clickthrough&WT.tsr
Purchase any three Band-Aid Bandages, Neosporin, Listerine anticavity mouthwash and Reach kids toothbrush and receive a free Phineas and Ferb pencil case. www.bandaid.com/safety.
Receive a free movie ticket when you enter two codes from any two especially marked boxes of General Mills cereal. new.emoviecash.com/gmills/code.php?eng
Buy any three products from these participating brands: Band-Aid, Johnson & Johnson Red Cross Brand, Neosporin, and Benadryl, send in the UPC bar codes and receive a free first-aid kit. www.bandaid.com/sites/all/themes/bandaid/microsite/pdf/Rebate%20Form.pdf
Purchase $50 worth of Olay cleansers and receive a mail-in rebate for $20. www.olay.com/publishingimages/offers/rebate/july152011/crossbrandpg/20_olay.pdf
Stay for at least one night as a paying guest at any participating KOA in August and receive one additional night during that stay for free. koakompass.com/stay_free_august/
Order a 2012 women’s health calendar with information on women’s risk factors, ways to take charge of your health and information about common health concerns. www.womenshealth.gov/publications/our-publications/calendar/order.cfm
Take the Pledge of Health and Happiness by eating more fruit and Edible Arrangements will give you a free pineapple pop. www.facebook.com/ediblearrangements?sk=app_142271345854826 (This site may load slowly.)
The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases is giving away a free diabetes motivational refrigerator magnet. catalog.niddk.nih.gov/detail.cfm?ID=377
Walgreens offers a photo deal of a day. Check out the rest of the week’s photo deals at photo.walgreens.com/walgreens/storepage/storePageId=AFF1?stop_mobi=yes&ec=hncx6376reg_trouble&ep_rid=AABFpj&ep_mid=_BOPj77B8cqkd7x"
American Express is giving card holders the opportunity to get dollar credits when they use their cards at selected places. https://www.facebook.com/americanexpress?sk=app_216352075054740
Join Offermatic and connect a credit card to your account to receive offers to shop at selected stores and receive cash back to your card. www.offermatic.com/l/home-index.php
The award-winning program — A Matter of Balance — is being offered at the Fayette County Extension Service, 1140 Red Mile Place. The program is designed to manage falls and increase activity levels for older adults. There are eight two-hour sessions and classes are free but limited to 20 participants. Classes start Sept.1. Call (859) 257-5582 to register.
Join Chick-fil-A for fairy tale night. Children will be treated to a meal, horse-drawn carriage ride and pictures with the cow, Miss Kentucky or Prince Charming. Children younger than 12 will receive a free Chick-fil-A Nuggets Kid’s Meal (four piece) with purchase of any meal.
The horse-drawn carriage ride (limo ride) will only be available from 5-7 p.m. at the following locations: Monday at Hamburg; Tuesday at Turfland; Aug. 18 at Nicholasville Road, Aug. 22 at Richmond Centre, Aug. 23 at Fayette Mall and Aug. 28 at Georgetown.
Through Sept. 8, T.G.I. Friday’s will be collecting non-perishable pet toys, treats and items for the Lexington Humane Society. Consumers who donate receive a free appetizer.
Phillip Gall’s on East New Circle Road is having movie night from 7-9 p.m. Aug. 25. Showing will be the 1966 Bruce Brown surfing documentary, The Endless Summer. Get 15 percent off during the event. Door prizes and umbrella drinks will be available.
A free personal fitness and nutrition class is offered every second Saturday at the Lexington Healing Arts Academy. http://www.lexingtonhealingarts.com/03_workshops_lhaa/calendar_lhaa.php#