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1. Buy Cheap Common Cards
Start off by buying common cards. Most card commons are very cheap and are around a dollar or less. Also ask your friends for their extra common cards. Friends are more likely to give you their extra commons for free. I often give my friends any extra common cards that they need for their decks. Although an ex-friend of mines gave me his Ultra-rare Dark Magician Girl. Don't expect that to happen at all.
Secondly, instead of buying a rare version of a card, but the common version. The nice shiny holo card looks nice. However, the normal common card has the same effect. A common Bottomless Trap Hole is just as useful as an ultra rare Bottomless Trap Hole.
2. Buy Cheap Rare Cards
Unfortunately, not every card has a common counterpart. The first edition copies will cost more than the unlimited copies. Buy the unlimited copies to save money for more cards.
There is some good news! Some rare cards have reprints. The reprinted copies are normally cheaper than the original copies.
3. Save The Rarest Cards For Last
A deck's most powerful cards are normally the most expensive cards. If possible buy these cards last. You should do the first and second step before buying the deck's strongest cards. During this time the cards' values may go up or down. The current meta and second hand market dictate the prices.
4. Buy Booster Boxes and Starter Decks
This isn't the best option depending on what you're trying to build. However, buying booster boxes and starter decks can help hasten your deck's completion. Only buy booster boxes when a box contains many cards that your deck needs. Last year I wanted to make a Prophecy deck so I purchased Return of The Duelist. I pulled many cards that my deck needed such as Spellbook of Secrets and Temperance of Prophecy.
5. Trade Extra and Unwanted Cards
You may not need or want every card. A cheap way of getting cards you want is by trading your extra and unwanted cards. Another man's trash is another man's treasure. You may find a player who wants your unwanted cards and have cards you need for your deck.
Be fair and honest when you trade with players. Build a good reputation at your locals. More people will trust you and want to trade with you. Never try to cheat someone with a very bad deal. Good players will notice this and will not trade with you.
6. Join Reward Programs
Reward programs are a great way to get cards for free. The best reward program is Swagbucks. You can easily and safely save up reward points to redeem them for Amazon or PayPal gift cards. Now you can use your new gift cards to buy cards. I used Swagbucks to buy my very first High Priestess of Prophecy for free.
Please post your comments and suggestions below! I want hear your deck budget ideas! Let's budget our decks together!