I feel like I spent my entire morning on the phone.  It started with our health care provider’s billing office because we received a bill which had not first been submitted to insurance.  I was there with Jeff the day of his appointment where we completed all the insurance forms and they made copies of the insurance ID card.  You would think that after the office’s diligence in making sure they gathered that information it would be processed correctly.  I suppose even with the help of technology, billing mistakes happen.

I don’t know if it’s just me, but it seems to happen especially when it comes to medical bills.   We kept receiving this one hospital bill for my son from the day he was born.  In the notation it stated the insurance denied it based on the fact that he wasn’t on our policy.  Time and again I would explain that he had been added to our policy and perhaps they were billing the wrong insurance provider.  In fact, there were other bills from different departments for the same day that had all been paid through the same insurance provider.  I would confirm the information with them over the phone and a few months later I would get the same bill all coming back with a denial from the insurance company.  I even contacted the insurance company to see if they had record of the bill submission.  Just as I suspected, they never had a record of the bill being submitted.  It’s been a few months since I received the last erroneous bill, so I’m still crossing my fingers that it’s finally been resolved.  After all, we’ll be celebrating Luke’s 2nd birthday soon.

I also had to place a call to The Children’s Place today.  Last night I was browsing through emails and noticed The Children’s Place was advertising a 30% discount.  Luke really needs some winter wear, especially boots.  I found a pair that would work and were on sale enough for me to feel like it was a good deal.  The advertisement said the discount offer ends at midnight, so I quickly checked a few other retailers to search for deals on boots and found the ones at The Children’s Place to be the best for what I was looking at, even with shipping costs.  (Which I hate to pay!)  I placed my order.

This morning I’m browsing through emails and wouldn’t you know they extended the offer with an even better discount and added free shipping on every order!  What?!   I checked their website, found the customer service number and read their price adjustment policy which states that once an order is placed they will NOT adjust the pricing based on any sale or promotion unless it was a full-priced item.  I thought maybe I would be out of luck on this one but I stayed on hold anyway to talk to a representative.  Luckily, and maybe with the help of a few prayers I prayed while on hold, they were able to cancel my order since it had not shipped, allowing me to place a new one with the new promotion, saving me $10!

The moral of my stories; it pays to pay attention.  Maybe it’s only $1 at Target making sure things ring up correctly or maybe it’s hundreds of dollars in medical bills but taking the time to make sure that you are being charged the correct amount can save you money.

I used to secretly giggle at Jeff whenever he would pour over our grocery receipt to make sure it was all correct.  Now I pay attention to everything from hospital bills to grocery receipts.   If I see something amiss, I take action to get it resolved, even if there’s a chance that it can’t be reversed.  I once noticed a subscription fee on my credit card statement for a software service I didn’t use anymore but was still on an automatic annual renewal.  I called the software company and explained I didn’t use it anymore and asked for a refund.  They gave it to me.

As my mom used to tell me, “It never hurts to ask!”  Just in this last year, I’ve saved at least $1200 by being aware, reviewing bills and asking questions.  If you are like the way I used to be, not really giving things a second glance, start paying attention.  A good savings strategy begins with you holding onto more of your money!