Rebates and coupons are a common way to save money. Manufacturers often add rebates to their products to get your attention. Some are for new products to make you want to try them out. Unlike a coupon, rebates take a few extra steps to redeem.
The first step to redeeming a rebate is purchasing the item. The key to making money on rebates is purchasing things you normally would purchase. If you buy an item just because it has a rebate, you might not use it. Therefore the item will actually end up costing you regardless.
While purchasing the item, make sure you have the rebate form. Read the form carefully. Rebate Processing Centers have people looking for specific things. Make sure you purchase the right quantity of a product. Using a coupon for the product will help you save more, some companies will deduct the coupon from your rebate earnings, too. Most companies don’t take into consideration the coupon. When in doubt, read the rebate again. If nothing is stated, you can take your chances. The worst that will happen is your rebate will be a little less.
Don’t forget your receipt. If you are purchasing for more then one rebate offer, you’ll need to ask for a copy of your receipt. If the cashier can’t give you a copy, you’ll need to have the cashier ring up each offer separately. Some cashiers might give you a hard time about this, just remember it’s their job and your money. I’ve found if you go at less busy times of the day, they are happy to accommodate your needs.
The second step to redeeming a rebate is completing the rebate. When you get home, get started on the rebate. If you wait, you might miss the deadline or throw out packaging that you need. Get started right away, read the rebate offer again. Fill in the rebate form with the information requested. Make sure you have marked the receipt where the specific product is. Gather the UPC code or anything else requested off the product.
There are some products, you can’t get the UPC code off. Usually the rebate will tell you what to do or if you even need it. It’s important to read the rebate.
Now that you have everything filled out and gathered, it’s important that you make a copy of the items. If you don’t copy and there is a problem, it will be your word against theirs. One little mistake could keep you from receiving your money back. It’s a good idea to have proof. Also, if the item has a warranty with it. Make sure you read the warranty agreement and make copies for that, too.
The third step to redeeming a rebate is mailing it. Before sealing the envelope, make sure everything is inside. Missing a UPC or a receipt could delay your money longer or worse yet, you could get denied. I suggest reading the rebate one last time before sealing the envelope.
Once you’ve mailed the rebate, it can take weeks to get your money. Patients is key. If you do multiple rebates, you might want to make a list. Then you know which have come in and which you are waiting on. Also, if one is taking extremely long, you can call and check on the status.
Focus on details is the key to rebating. Any little thing can delay or have your rebate refused. Check and double check. Then enjoy your cash back. Over the year, it can really add up.