Incidents of an aimless mind.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Stretching Your Grocery Dollar: Part 4

Organization Continued...

So now you have a list and a mess of coupons, what's next? Pull out the coupons you intend to use! You will save yourself a massive headache if you do this before you even leave the house. Without all the distractions of the store you can make sure to grab the correct coupons and check that they are still good. Stick them in an envelope or clip them to your list. Either way, your trip will be much faster and smoother for having done this step.

As you are at the store there are a few things to keep in mind. First being, check dates! Reach in the back and grab the freshest product you can. It cost the same, so why would you buy the one that expires tomorrow? Also, grab the right size/variety for the coupon/sale. If your coupon says $1 off any size, grab the least expensive size. (Usually the smallest one.) This is contrary to what most people think, but the reasoning is that you are taking a greater percentage off the price when you buy the less expensive. It's not a hard fast rule, but generally speaking it's true.

Now for the remainder of your coupon collection, there are two ways to best organize. If you participate on site that tells you what coupons to use you can simply file the weekly inserts by date. Pulling them out to clip as needed. However, if you are doing this on your own you may find it more beneficial to clip the Q's you like and file them into a notebook. Here is mine:

It is a nice leather notebook that zips closed. I use variety of baseball and photo protectors to organize my coupons. I then have them separated into the areas of the grocery store. Dairy, meats, baking, etc... I also have a spot in the back for store coupons for each of the stores I frequent. I especially love this binder because it has a pad of paper and a calculator which is critical for those times when I REALLY can't spend more than $x. (I also love it because my husband surprised me with it, inserts and all.)

**This is important - Yes, I was embarrassed the first few times I hauled this thing in to the store, BUT what I have learned is that people are hugely impressed. I've been complimented more times than I can count. These days I feel savvy and ahead of the curve.**

To make my coupon operation run smoothly I choose clip and file weekly and purge monthly. Most coupons tend to run through the end of the month, so my binder looks like the worst yo-yo dieter in the world. Stuffed and heavy on the 25th, light and slim on the 5th.

...stay turned, there is more!

2 thoughts:

Kristen July 7, 2009 at 8:44 PM  

lol; I wish I could drop from bloated to skinny in just 11 days :D

lilminnow July 7, 2009 at 9:43 PM  

Fat cells and water weight should have expiration dates too. Yes?

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