Are free-after-rebate offers really free? Sometimes. In fact, sometimes you – the consumer – can actually make a little money on the deal.
“What Does That Free Item Really Cost Me?
Free-after-rebate refunds generally come in two forms: check or store credit in the amount of the purchase price. When the refund comes in form of a check, the costs to you are relatively small – you will generally have to pay the tax (if the item is taxable), travel expenses (gas), and sometimes postage. You also lose the use of your money for the time it takes for the rebate to process.
For larger rebates, you should also spend a few cents to make a copy of al...