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The following entry is by Tim F. Tim is a personal finance writer at Faith and Finance, a Christian financial help blog that provides financial insights for individuals, businesses, and churches. He and his wife are the author of the eBook How to Coupon. Find him on Twitter.
I still remember the feeling of frustration when we’d come home from the grocery store with a higher bill each month. Food prices were creeping up and portion sizes were getting smaller. Sound familiar?
Sure, we’d use an occasional coupon, but it seemed like every time we’d look down the aisle for the brand named item so that we could use our coupons, the store brands were much cheaper. Inevitably, we would ditch the coupon and go with the store brand.
We were like most people who tried to use coupons but didn’t really know how to maximize the deals.
But things started turning around when we heard of coupon stacking. It’s a technique that you’ve probably heard of, especially if you’ve heard of extreme couponing. No it doesn’t involve buying 45 bottles of ketchup to save a few bucks. It means that you apply store coupons, manufacturer coupons, and store deals together so that you save upwards of 50-80% on your grocery or toiletry item.
Once we learned how to coupon the right way, we started saving 50-80% on groceries and toiletries while building up a supply of 2-3 months of the things we used most often. The feeling of relief that came from saving money was just what we needed to control our budget.
The Coupon Process
Couponing isn’t rocket science, but hundreds of thousands of dollars are left on the table each year by shoppers who don’t use coupons. The days of clipping one or two coupons are long gone. Saving money on groceries with coupons requires a dedication and a bit of organization, so make sure you keep these in the forefront of your mind as you start.
The key to maximizing your coupons is to stay organized. Most couponers will use a coupon binder with dividers to help you to stay organized. The second key is to be consistent. If you can stay consistent in cutting coupons each week, you’ll run across deals that will save 50-80% easily. Since store deals recycle every three months or so, you’ll see fresh coupons to replace those that have expired in your coupon binder.
When it comes to actually using your coupons, you’ll be ahead of the game because of your organized approach to storing and finding your coupons. You’ll be able to quickly find a product’s coupon and quickly get in and out of a store while snatching some great deals.
Teaching Others To Coupon
After we helped a few of our friends learn the ‘secrets’ of couponing, we realized that an eBook would be extremely helpful to a lot of people. That’s why we wrote the eBook How To Coupon and we’re giving it away for free to the first 500 people who sign up to receive the book.