One of the most commonly asked questions I receive is “how can I save without being an extreme couponer?”. Savings are everywhere and are always easy to find but here are some great tips on How To Be A Successful Casual Couponer. It doesn’t take 40 hours a week, thousands of coupons and blisters from clipping to be successful at saving money. Awareness and planning go a long way toward taking the work out of couponing while keeping the savings at a maximum. So sit back, relax and learn 7 easy steps to becoming the casual couponer you want to be!
HOW TO BE A SUCCESSFUL CASUAL COUPONER
- CREATE A PRICE BOOK. This is one of the easiest ways to maximize your coupon savings. Make a list of the products you routinely purchase specific brands of and then scout the local stores you frequent for their every day prices. When those items go on sale you can verify if the sale price is actually the lowest price as well as knowing when coupons coming out will be worth buying extra inserts for more to use.
- CHECK TO SEE WHAT EACH WEEK INSERTS WILL CONTAIN. Before you go buying 10 newspapers a week for inserts that include tons of coupons you just won’t use, go to Sunday Coupon Preview and check to see what inserts are expected and what coupons are supposed to be in those inserts. Do take note that some items won’t be in all inserts as they are specific to select areas.
- MATCH COUPONS TO CLEARANCE ITEMS. One of the best deals I found was with a coupon I found on the product while it was on the clearance shelf. One of our local grocery stores marked down the Kraft Homestyle Mac & Cheese dinners for Only $0.75 each. Every container on markdown actually had a $1.00/2 coupon on it that made them only $.25 each. While I don’t advocate clearing all of the peelies or blinkies off the shelves, I did use all that were available in that trip as they were expiring that same day. 16 Kraft dinners later I knew they were not my typical splurge but could be great for quick lunches for the kids.
- ONLY CLIP COUPONS FOR BRANDS YOU TYPICALLY USE. Although you can save money and get great deals when you clip every coupon and keep it in your binder, it isn’t necessary to save money. By simply clipping the coupons for the brands you would typically buy whether couponed or not you can focus more specifically on what would benefit your family the most. For our family that means always clipping Schick Razor, Edge Shave Gel, Arm & Hammer Cat Litter, All or Gain Laundry Detergent and Tresseme Hair Products. Other brand name products like toothepaste, dishwasher detergents, toilet paper, etc. we aren’t as brand specific with. I keep only the brands I know I would regularly buy anyway in my binder. This saves me time and ultimately will save me money.
- FIND A COUPON BUDDY OR LOCAL COUPON GROUP. It helps tremendously when you can work with someone else to make the most of your coupons. Whether it’s a monthly accountability date to clip and sort coupons or a weekly shopping trip you make together that involves sharing deals and swapping coupons, having two sets of eyes on the deals makes it much easier to find success without all of the extra time spent.
- SIGN UP FOR STORE LOYALTY CARDS & ECOUPONS. Most chain grocery stores have great ecoupons available that you can download to your store loyalty card. Sign up and log in to get maximum savings when you shop.
- USE MONEY SAVING APPS. More and more apps have come onto the scene in the last year that are great for those who want to save but don’t have the time to invest as an extreme couponer. Apps like Favado help you determine the best sale prices in your area while other apps like iBotta and Checkout 51 give you cash back on your purchases.
Using these simple tips can turn an hour or two a week int you being a Successful Casual Couponer in no time! Remember that any amount of savings is better than no savings at all!