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Inflation Impact: Tips On Saving Money

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- The latest consumer price index shows the average cost of goods has risen about 8% since February of last year.

And according to a recent survey from Mood Analytics, the surge is costing the average American household nearly $300 more a month.

Sara Rathner, a credit cards expert for NerdWallet, told KDKA, "It's so much harder to budget and still have money left over for longer-term financial goals like saving for something big or even saving for the things that you want to do like taking a vacation."

Rathner said although it may require a little homework, there are ways you can trim down on the rising cost of consumer goods. She said you can do things like use browser extensions such as Honey and Shop Savvy, which help with cost comparisons.

"If I'm looking for a specific item that is sold on multiple retailers, it will pop up an alert that says, 'Hey, this is available for less money at this other site,'" said Rathner.

You can also purchase items through other apps and extensions like Rakuten, which makes a commission off directing shoppers to online retailers by offering cash back when shopping for your favorite brands through them.

"It redirects you to the same site, just through the browser extension. And then once you make the purchase, you'll receive the notification that you earned cash back and once you accumulate a certain amount, they'll pay you out," Rathner said.

There are some cash-back credit options that qualifying cardholders could consider as well.

"You can save at least 2% on all your purchases by picking a cash-back card that is rewarding. And some cards will reward you, even more, 3% and up if you shop in specific categories like groceries, gas, restaurants and travel," said Rathner.

And, of course, you can always clip coupons or take advantage of any in-store promotions. But even the most skilled bargain shoppers may want to take a closer look at the fine print before being swept away by that sale sticker.

"Look at the price per unit, look at the price per ounce for each item you're buying because something might seem cheaper when you look at the price as a whole and realize that sometimes the brand name is cheaper than the generic, or sometimes the thing that's on sale is still more expensive than another item that's not," she said

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