Over the past few years, we have seen food prices skyrocket with salaries barely catching up to meet it. In addition, well-paying jobs are becoming more and more difficult to come by. So, what options do you have? Well, one of them is extreme couponing. This is where you take couponing to another level. Instead of, say, saving a few dollars here and there, you can actually save between 50 and 90 percent of your entire grocery bill! Now, think of what you could do with all of that extra money in your pocket? Take a vacation? Save up for a home? Buy a new car? If you want all those things and more, you should definitely check out this extreme couponing mastercourse. Not to mention, you can feed an entire family, comfortably, using these proven techniques. If you are interested, read on to learn how.
In America, the average family spends anywhere between $500 and $1,100 a month on groceries, cleaning products, pet items, toiletries, simple entertainment and clothing. That is a lot of money! It can go by quickly as a large number of small-ticket items can add up and soon you only have enough to make it through the week! However, that can change with some knowledge, practice, motivation and experience.
Gather Your Coupons
Part of extreme couponing is getting your arsenal ready. Think of this as your bag full of tricks, except they are not tricks at all, but real and concrete savings. Where can you get your coupons? Try to start off with the Sunday newspaper. Look for inserts from “Smart Source,” “Red Plum” and “Proctor & Gamble.” The Sunday paper is really where they insert most of their coupons. If you do not have a paper subscription, you should get one, at least for the Sunday paper only. You want to save money, don’t you? You can definitely do that once you learn how to clip your budget!
Another place is to print online coupons. At one time, this was not the most efficient choice for gathering coupons. However, it is now very much worth it. There are several reputable sites to choose from. Even if you can only print two of each coupon, that is more savings than you had when you started.
You should also write to manufacturers. Many of them want you to try their products. When they see you have taken the time to write them, you might get more out of your effort than you expected. Not to mention, you might even get some free samples. Who doesn’t love free stuff?
Ask Your Friends and Neighbors
Not everyone has the desire or the time to get into extreme couponing. Certainly you have friends and neighbors who have coupons lying around. Ask them if you can take their Sunday newspapers off of their hands or any coupons they do not plan on using. Make it easy for them by going to them instead of asking them to come to you. However, once they see how much you have been hauling in and saving, they might start giving them to you without you having to ask.
Once you have accumulated stacks of coupons, you need to get organized. You do not want to walk into a grocery store feeling unprepared and not knowing which coupon to use for which item. Getting your coupons itemized will help take off some of the pressure that comes with your first foray into extreme couponing. First, you want to use a coupon binder. This way, you can have something portable that you can take into the car and into the store of your choice. Also, if you notice an unadvertised sale, you can look into your binder to see if you have a coupon for it or not. You can also place your store’s coupon policies in your binder. Getting organized might seem like a daunting task in and of itself, but it doesn’t have to be. This simple online course can help you become a master of organization in no time!
Set your coupons by letter or product. You want a binder with baseball-sized, clear slots, so that you can see your coupons, easily. You also want it so that they are easy to insert and remove. Use tabs to make sections for your coupons such as, cleaning products, breakfast, toiletries and more. You can also make further divisions based upon manufacturers and store brand coupons.
Look For Sales
So, now that you have a binder with some coupons, you want to start searching for store sales. Once you find them, see if you have a coupon for the items on sale. Calculate the final costs (after the sale and your coupon) to see if you find the deal worth it. If you do, put all of your coupons together for that item, so that you can complete multiple transactions at once.
Search for buy-one-get-one-free (BOGO) items. These can be the best deals if you can use the coupon for the free item. To illustrate, say you see a BOGO deal for a whole-grain loaf of bread at $1.50 for both and you have a coupon for $1.00 off. That means, each loaf of bread is $.25! You can get 10 loaves of bread for $2.50! Since you are already cutting back on spending, you should check out these tips for even more fast savings.
Decide What Makes the Most Sense
When you first start out, you will get excited for any savings you achieve. However, with more experience, you begin to realize that waiting does have its benefits. For example, say you can get toothpaste for free mixing sales with your coupons. So, if you have a coupon that limits your cost of toothpaste to $.10 a tube, wouldn’t you rather wait until you can find a better sale where you know you will get it free?
Understand Your Store’s Policies
It can be disappointing when you go into a store, packed with your coupons, only to find out they honor just a few of them. So, do your research before shopping. Find things out such as, do they double the value of coupons? Do they have coupon limits? What are their BOGO policies? Do they offer special discounts for seniors or students? Do they use competitors’ coupons? Also, some clerks might not be as well-versed as you are with their store’s coupon policies. Keep an updated copy on hand, just in case.
When it comes to extreme couponing, the most important aspect of it all is to have fun. You will save a lot of money, but you will make mistakes in the process, as well. Learn from your mishaps and keep going. After all, the money you get to keep in your pocket is worth it!