Couponing 101: Start Your Coupon Collecting
In America, the average family pays out between $600 and $1,200 every month on groceries, clothing, toiletries, cleaning items, pet food & small entertainment costs. Holy Cow! That’s a huge portion of your budget!
Most people understand they can sacrifice a few unnecessary things to save some money here and there, but is it possible to actually decrease or even eliminate some of these expenses without giving up on good food, hygiene & style? Yes, you certainly can by coupon collecting!
So in this 5-part article series, I am going to lay out 5 steps that you can apply so that you can not only save on items I mentioned above, but also cut your budget and become an expert couponer!
Couponing Step 1: Coupon CollectingThere’s no doubt that you’re going to need a good amount of coupons, but there is no need to go crazy! You want several of the same coupon, so that when you find an item(s) you want, you can minimize your savings by maximizing multiple coupons for multiple items. coupon collecting folks think of coupons as money because they tend to use them like cash.
Top coupon collecting resources:
1. The Sunday NewspaperWe get 2 newspapers each Sunday morning with Smart Source and P&G coupons. Then in our mailbox each Tuesday we get the Red Plum. This is a great place to start.
Coupons such as “Red Plum,” “Proctor & Gamble” & “Smart Source” are the most popular. Of course, purchasing multiple copies of the newspaper, will give you more coupon copies.
In the off chance you don’t want to dissect your newspaper just to gather the coupons, you can go directly to the website, The Coupon Clippers and have just the coupons you need mailed directly to you.
Coupon Collecting Tip: Set a time during the week to dedicated to cutting that weeks coupons and get them filed. This way, no procrastination sets in. We’ll talk more about organization in the next article.
2. Online CouponsI love finding coupons on the internet now. Most retailers have their own websites and on them are coupons and big sales.
A while back, I published an article called, Utilizing the Saving Power of Online Coupons. In it, I talk about online coupons and how to maximize your savings with them.
A few that I will mention here are:
3. Smaller Chain StoresSmaller chain stores like Walgreens and CVS have ads as well. Walgreens has coupon booklets at the door and we frequently pick up 2 or 3, cut them out and use them only or combine them with manufacturers coupons.
CVS has the Coupon Center machine that you can go scan your card and it will print out coupons. I often get really good deals on soup, laundry detergent and paper towels by doing that.
Coupon Collecting Tip: Quite often, coupon booklets are sitting out in plain sight, but if you don’t see them near the door, ask at the cashier station.
4. Neighbors & RelativesAssuming you buy a few Sunday papers for your coupons, you might be able to squeeze even more coupons by asking your neighbors if they use their coupons or by asking them if there are some they don’t plan on using. I have also asked some relatives that don’t coupon if I can have theirs. Sometimes I get them and sometimes I do not, but it is worth a try!
Coupon Collecting Tip: Some neighbors simply throw away their whole paper after reading it and I have heard of some couponers “dumpster diving” for the coupons. Once they circle an alley way or two, they may come back with around ten copies of coupons they can put to use. I am not a fan of this since there are tons of discarded trash, germs and God knows what in people’s trash. But it’s a popular way of gaining coupons, but Don’t Forget To Wear Gloves! Or hit up the recycling bins if you are going to dumpster dive.
With these tips & resources on Coupon Collecting, you’ll have an abundance of coupons.
In my next article, I will be focusing how you organize your coupons.
Happy Coupon Collecting!