Sunday, October 12, 2008

Coupons 101

Getting started
The first things you will need:

1. Multiple Sunday newspapers. There is usually a Smart Source and Red Plum insert. Some weeks there are Proctor and Gamble (toothpaste, etc) or other inserts. You can have multiple papers delivered or many grocery stores sell Sunday papers all week. Purchase more if you know the coupons are ones you will definitely use. Go to Taylortown Coupon Preview to see what coupons should be in the upcoming paper (see link under Helpful Sites). If you are going to spend an hour or more a week you want your savings to be worth your time. Shoot for 70% off your grocery bill (with coupons and store sales). Consider the time spent and the savings and I think you'll find an extra hour a week to save $90 is worth it!

2. Organization. There are many ways to organize your coupons. Heather suggested getting baseball card organizers (pages that have three hole punch so you can put them in a notebook). Walmart does not currently have them but Team Dewey in Karcher Mall sells them for 0.25 per page. Cut out the coupons of things you use and place them in the notebook. As you flip through you can see what you have. For the coupons you don't think you'll use just write the date on the cover of the insert and file the rest for future use. There have been coupons I didn't think I'd need but then the item was free or really inexpensive and I wished I had them. You can donate items your unneeded items to shelters, etc.

3. Start Shopping. Buy items that are on sale. One of the best sites I use is Pinching your Pennies (see sidebar for link). Click on deals by state, go to Idaho's Screaming Deals. You will find a weekly printable shopping list for Alberstons. Pinching your Pennies will list all the sales items, coupons that came out, printable coupon links (these are great, they are often higher value than coupons from the newspaper). Follow their star system to see what items are super hot deals. Use your coupons to make the deal even sweeter. Make sure you are getting aprox. 70% off regular price. If the item is only 50% off you can probably get it cheaper. Stockpiling is the goal. I like to buy in 10s (that is why I buy multiple newspapers). You want to stock up on items when they are on sale so you don't end up paying full price. It takes time but little by little you will have a great food storage.

When meat is on sale stock up. The best Albertsons sale for boneless skinless chicken breasts or tenders is $1.69/pound. The nice thing is you can have how ever much you need for your family wrapped up for you. It is nice to always have it on hand too.

4. Stick with it. It may take a little while to get the hang of it but saving $$$ can be lots of fun. I feel like the money I save is money I can use for other things.


The Crum Family said...

Thanks guys this is great! I needed someone to get me started becuase I was not quite sure what I was doing. I signed up for Teri's List that basically does the same thing but it costs $15 every 8 weeks.

Dan~Kerstin~Bree said...

I don't know about that one. Pinching your pennies does most of the work so I plan on posting the extra good deals here!