Do You Get What You Pay For?

The phrase “You get what you pay for” is often used to justify paying a higher price for an item. The higher price is equated with higher quality. As a general rule of thumb it is true that a higher price is often an indicator of higher quality but there are so many exceptions that price shouldn’t be relied on as a sole indicator of quality.

The recalls of pet food and peanut butter showed that the same manufacturers were making both the store brands and the higher-priced brands. Often the only difference between a store brand and a name brand is the label. In that case when you buy the name brand you are paying for advertising and packaging, not for higher quality. There are plenty of other situations where the higher priced item is not higher quality than the cheaper item or at least not of sufficiently better quality to make it a better value. “You get what you pay for” is often used to rationalize an expensive purchase. Instead of making a purchase based on perceived value it should be made on actual value.

Sometimes even though the higher priced item might be of higher quality it still isn’t the best choice. An example would be cell phones. A new phone that takes pictures, plays MP3’s, and has tons of other features would be considered higher quality than my bottom-of-the-line 2002 cell phone that does little more than make and receive phone calls. However, since I only use my phone to make and receive phone calls and would be unlikely to use the extra features on a new phone the extra features would have little value for me.

I’m not saying that you should always buy the cheapest item. Many times the better quality and durability of a more expensive item justifies its higher price. My point is that you shouldn’t just assume that the higher priced item is a better choice. Your decision should be based on which product provides you the most value for your money.

Alternative Income: GPT Sites

Using GPT(get-paid-to) sites is another way I make alternative income. The basic idea of GPT sites is that companies pay affiliates to get them customers. The affiliates bribe the customers by offering them some of this money for signing up for offers.

As an example, I signed up for a one month trial of Netflix. I paid $9.99 for the month but the GPT site paid me $23 leaving me with about $13 profit. The company hopes that enough people remain customers after the trial that the company makes a profit.

I haven’t done too many of these lately because it is somewhat of a hassle to call up the companies and cancel and make sure you keep track of when you need to cancel. My favorite GPT site is CashDuck (referral link) which is operated by fellow PF blogger Kira of PennyFoolish. She has a great guide on her site on how to make money on GPT sites. She made thousands from these sites before starting her own.

Other sites I have used are MaviShare (ref link) and InstantProfitz(ref link). MaviShare used to be good but they haven’t had many offers lately. InstantProfitz has lots of offers but it can sometimes be difficult to be properly credited. The only GPT site that I’ve had a bad experience with is DealBarbiePays. There are lots of other sites out there that I haven’t tried that might or might not be good.

If you would like to start doing GPT offers I would recommend first reading the how-to at PennyFoolish and then signing up with CashDuck(ref link). Do one or two offers at first and make sure they are properly crediting. If there are no problems with crediting then go ahead and do as many as you want. This can be a way to make decent money for those who put the time into it.

Another Dumpster Diving Score

In yesterday’s mail there was a $10 gift card from Buca di Beppo. Apparently they were mailing them to all residents in my zip code. A quick check of the junk mail trash can netted me two more cards. I’ll be keeping my eye out for more of these. These weren’t packaged like most junk mail though so there may not be many of them thrown away in the junk mail trash can. My decision now is whether to sell them on eBay where they will probably sell for about $5 or treat myself to some fancy dinners. A $10 gift card doesn’t go too far there so I will likely only splurge for one dinner unless I find a lot more gift cards.

March Income

My income was up slightly in March. This was a great result considering there is no Adsense income for this month. The increase was from the sale of a text link and lots of paid posts. (There are no paid posts on this blog.) Here are the totals.

Online Income




Mystery Shopping






This is all alternative income. Next month my total income will be up but alternative income will most likely be down since I’m now have a job.

Snow in April?

The forecast is calling for snow overnight. This isn’t the kind of weather I expected in April. After the pleasant temperatures at the end of March I decided that I would not heat or cool my apartment in April. These cold temperatures are making this more of a challenge than I expected but I’ve slept outside in below freezing temperatures many nights so surely I can handle this. Since I’m in an apartment the temperature stays well above the outside temperature even without using my heat. It is supposed to start warming up Sunday so I should be ok after that. Providing it doesn’t get too hot before the month is over.