Tips on getting your money's worth

The New York State Consumer Protection Board is offering dollar stretching tips and has started compiling lists of ideas and audio/video clip tips received from consumers. The following suggestions have been received from consumers thus far: Take a drivers training or defensive driving course to reduce your automobile insurance rates. Many companies offer lower rates for safe drivers. Frequent your local public library for free access to books, movies and music. Avoid Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) charging service fees. Dont accept the first price you are quoted. Get more than one quote, and bargain for lower prices where you can. Check store policies on reshelving or restocking fees. Some stores have return policies, but the fine print may include a re-shelving or restocking fee of a percentage of the purchase price for an item. Volunteer as an usher at a local theater to see shows free-of-charge. Vacation close to home to save money on hotel bills and gasoline. New York States I Love NY campaign has great ideas for leisure activities statewide. Start a lunch club at work and rotate who brings in food. If you have 5 people in the group, then you can buy in bulk and only have to bring lunch once a week. Ask for a lower interest rate from your credit card company. If your credit rating is good, you may qualify for a lower rate. Check receipts for overcharges and challenge price discrepancies. Also check the stores policy on overcharges, as some stores offer more than the difference of the money owed for an overcharge. Add your own suggestions by sending an e-mail or a downloadable audio or video clip to my2cents@consumer.state.ny.us. The Senior Connection is a column provided by the Clinton County Office for the Aging. For more information about services for senior citizens, contact their office at 135 Margaret St., Suite 105, Plattsburgh or call them at 565-4620.

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