Before I learned how to coupon, I didn’t see much value in a coupon. I thought I might save 50 cents off my entire shopping order. We’d look at our much-to-large grocery budget and realize that we need to whittle it down to a much smaller amount. I truly thought it was an impossible goal.
I’ve learned over the past 2 years that couponing does drastically change our grocery budget, that we don’t have to eat only processed food, and that saving money is freeing.
Coupons are like cash!
I view coupons as cash. They’re valuable. When I match the coupon with a sale at the store, I often end up paying less than 50% of the original cost of the product. Usually more.
Save and Spend Elsewhere
There aren’t a ton of coupons for produce and meat. If I can get my personal care items at rock bottom prices or even free, that frees up money in my budget for organic produce and meat. We make most of our food from scratch. You don’t have to eat unhealthy, processed food if you’re on a budget.
You don’t have to be extreme in your couponing. I only buy 2 papers a week and most times this is enough to build my stockpile for my family of 4. I even have extra to donate. One of the best purchases that I made was my Brother Laser Printer. I can print 1000’s of pages of coupons without replacing the toner… and the coupons always scan. I post deals on the printer when I find them. I paid around $85.
You Don’t Have to Be Perfect
It’s not all or nothing. Start small and do what works for your family at this stage in your life. I found that the coupon binder method was too much work for me. I combine the coupon box and a coupon binder with uncut coupons. I don’t spend a lot of time clipping coupons.
And I don’t have every trip planned down to the penny when I leave the house. I blog full-time and have 2 little kids, so I need to find a balance. I still have really successful shopping trips and our grocery budget has drastically changed.
Passing Up Deals
It’s okay to pass up a deal, even if it’s amazing. I went a little crazy with buying crackers when I first started. My family really doesn’t eat crackers. It’s a great opportunity to donate an item or if the budget or schedule doesn’t allow… pass the deal up. Another deal will come along.
Be gracious and patient with yourself. It takes time to learn the art of couponing, to maximize your saving and build your stockpile. I hope that following Give Me Neither will help you learn how to whittle that budget down.
Stay tune for more articles in the Save Simply series…
I just took pictures of my personal care stockpile to show you. And no… I don’t have a garage dedicated to it ;)