Friday, October 30, 2009

Huh? A Useful Savings Program from Bank of America?

A year or so ago, Bank of America started its "Keep the Change" program, where they move the "change" from debit card purchase to your savings account (rounding each purchase to the whole dollar and moving the difference). Personally, I find this program completely harmless - I mean, sure, I appreciate the $67 I've earned this year - but many find it pointless and annoying, as the savings accrue painfully slowly even for frequent debit card users (and all the little transfers muddle my online statements).

But lo and behold, they have a new program- one where you can actually get some legitimate rewards. It's called "Add It Up" and with minimal effort, you can get anywhere from 3 - 20% cash back on purchases from a whole host of online retailers. When I first noticed this little promotion, I was quite skeptical that there would be any retailers I actually patronized, but in fact, they have an incredible list of partners including Target, Sephora, Bloomingdales, PotteryBarn, FinishLine, Overstock, BestBuy, UrbanOutfitters, Apple, Gap, JCrew, and on and on. At this point, I'm more surprised when a company is NOT available.

The percentage you receive back varies from company to company, but given that the only additional effort required to receive the savings is to register one of your BOA cards (once) and then click through the Add It Up site to the retailer's site (total time: 1 minute), it's definitely worth the effort to check. When I recently purchased two pairs of shoes from, I received 9% cash back, for a total of over $20 in savings! At, I got 4% cash back and at Sephora 5%. While I fully recognize that 3% back on small purchases is nothing to write home about, I highly recommend checking this site anytime you're about to click "submit" for an order over $100. And best of all, this program doesn't negate any other coupons, discount codes, or card rewards - it's on top of anything you'd already get.

Check it out:

My Innaugural Post!

After months of deliberation (and laziness), I have finally gotten around to starting this little exercise in public service and self-congratulation. And what exactly IS this little exercise, you may be wondering? Well despite the potentially racy interpretations implied by "profligate," I will instead be focusing on reducing financial profligacy by offering little tips to help you save money - without too much effort or compromising your lifestyle (I actually want you to use some of these tips after all). Of course, everyone's scale of savings vs. effort is different, but I'll do my best to post frequently in hopes of occasionally piquing people's interest...

I don't purport to be aware of all of the money-saving deals out there (far from it!), but after frequent teasing from friends about my own thrifty habits, I thought I might as well share the things I do come upon and use in my own life. However, I am more than happy to get suggestions from readers, so please let me know if you're on to something particularly prudent.