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I finished my Notebook this Morning
When you are clipping coupons it is as important to organize them as it is to clip them. Remember, clipping coupons and using them is almost like a part-time job. So disciplining yourself is like working online with your business, you need to have a schedule and stick to it.
What is the best way to organize your coupons? You have this pile of coupons that you just searched for and clipped. The pile needs to be broke down and separated out into different categories.
In order to make coupon usage work for you the first rule of thumb is: You Must Commit to this project. Basically, it will become like a part time job.. the money you save, and be really good, or it can be not so good.. it's your call!!
Does it really work?
Yes it does, if you organize them. Let's paint a picture of a typical day devoted to couponing.
-You get your Sunday paper (s)
-You clip the coupons that you know you will use
-You search online sites and gather the coupons you use, print them, cut them out and stack them up.
-You have this pile of coupons in front of you, now what?
The coupons needs to be sorted into stacks of products and organized into some kind of filing system. If you do not do this, all of the time and effort you have put into this project is going to be wasted. I will admit, it is much easier to just throw your coupons into your purse which by the way is often referred to as the "Black Hole". Than when your grocery shopping you have to fumble around in this "Black Hole" and try to figure out what coupon you have and what coupons you do not have.
Now comes the fun part, you get up to the check out lane and the cashier is ringing up your groceries. You begin to search for coupons you know you have, but the other customers in line are in a hurry to check out and you begin to feel you are holding everyone up so you just forget about the coupon and pay for your groceries.
Now, do not think about all of the money you just "threw" away because you were unorganized.. Yes, you actually just threw a lot of money out the window (so to speak) because you were NOT organized!
Simple ways to organize coupons
I have tried a lot of different ways to organize my coupons (and have just started a new way, which I will share in a moment.)
Throughout the years I have tried several different systems. I have separated my coupons into piles and placed each pile in its own envelope, writing the category on each envelope; as an example: dairy, can goods, meats, breakfast, household items, aspirin and other drug items, and so on. This worked okay for a while, but the envelope soon filled up with out dated coupons and I missed a lot of sale items that I had coupons for and that means I lost money!
I have tried using those little spiral folders that has several pages with slots on the front that you slip your coupons into. For me it did not work because there was not enough pages to separate my coupons into categories the way I wanted them and/or wanted them to be. So I trashed that idea.
I have tried making piles of coupons and paper clipping them together with not much luck. I have been using a little coupon holder that fits nicely in my purse with tabs that I could write the category on, and although this method worked pretty good, somehow I still became unorganized with my coupons.
My newest system: A three ring notebook with clear sleeves that have three sections on each page. I believe almost everyone has an old three ring notebook in their house somewhere. I personally purchased my clear sleeves on Amazon and just started organizing my coupons this afternoon.
Since most coupons have an expiration date I devoted my first page to expiring soon coupons. I am planning on writing a label for each section on the sleeves, devoting that slot to that particular item. I got 20 pages of sleeves which have three sections on each page; that gives me sixty different categories I can assign and if I want more, all I have to do is purchase another package of sleeves.
I will be adding some loose paper in the notebook to write out my grocery list and make sure I have a pen with me. I know carrying the notebook into the store will feel a little odd at first, but if you look at it, you are really being organized, if you find sale items you have coupons for they are right in front of you and really it does not take up that much more room than having your coupon wallet with you, a grocery pad and plus have a separate paper clip to hold together the coupons you are using.
I first heard about this system from a lady in Walmart, she even added dividers to her notebook. Since than Stick'em has blank tabs that would work just as good or you can even make your by using a blank label and folding it over a sleeve. I was lucky enough to find some dividers I had purchased in the past and decided to use them.
I believe this system of organizing my coupons costed me less than $10 (that is if you do not have a three ring notebook) It cost me $6.00 to put my notebook together which is a small fraction of what I saved last week in using my coupons.
Organizing your Coupons
Links that may interest you
- How To Save Money with Printable Discount Coupons at...
Printable Coupons, Coupon Codes Online: Download Google Coupons. How to access store coupons.
- How to Stack Coupons
Have you ever watched a show on TLC called
- Coupon Mom: How to get free coupons in the mail
There are many different ways to get coupons. You can buy Sunday newspapers, you can print them off of the Internet, and you can even find them attached to products themselves. One of the best ways to get coupons however is surprisingly little...
- Save Money With Coupons: 15 Tips From The Coupon Lad...
Tips on how to save money with coupons. Lessons I learned as The Coupon Lady and how to save money at the grocery store with coupons.
- Ten Things I have Learned about Using Coupons to Sav...
Ten steps to start saving money using coupons. This is for the beginner couponer to use for getting started couponing.
- Where to Find Coupons - 15 Best Places to Look
Find out where the 15 best places are to find grocery store coupons. These tips will help you collect all the coupons you need to save.
- A Quick and Easy Guide to Finding Coupons
Whether you’re needing to significantly downsize your budget or you’re just looking to use your money more wisely, one of the easiest ways to save money is to use coupons. From the most casual user to an extreme couponer, below are valuable...
- How to Find the Best Free Coupons / Rebates / Gift C...
Finding those rebates, gift cards, coupons, etc. A safe-way how-to guide.
- Walmart.com: Coupons: Install
Grocery Coupons, Recipe Coupons, Internet Coupons, and Printable Coupons are just some of what Coupons.com has to offer.
- Becentsable — Saving you money, time, and resources
Saving you money, time, and resources
- AllYou.com - Save money with coupons, free samples, and shopping tips.
Let us help you save money with printable coupons, cheap family recipes, free samples, online deals and more.
Are you a coupon clipper?
How much money have you saved using coupons in the past three months?
Colder Weather Approaching
With the colder weather approaching rather fast, it is time stock pile foods that can be made quickly and easily. During the holidays, grocery stores usually offers good sales on can vegetables, beans, etc. You can very easily make a homemade vegetable soup just by using a few cans of vegetables and a few spices. I understand that you would much rather have fresh vegetables and such, but I am talking about if your electricity goes out and the only way of cooking is a small Coleman burner. (Which in my opinion everyone should have one)
Another good thing to stock up on is bottles of water. If you currently are using bottled water save your jugs and refill them with regular tap water and put the date on the bottle. I cannot tell you how many times this has helped my own family. This water has been used for washing dishes, sponge bathing, flushing the toilet. NO.. I do not save tap water to drink especially living in city limits.
I understand this may seem a little off track from organizing coupons-but often you will see coupons in the newspaper and by combining the coupon with can goods that are on sale, can save you that much more money.
Stock piling for the winter months is as important as organizing your coupons. It never hurts to prepare now.
Part Time Job
If your budget allows... this is a GREAT way to treat couponing as a part time job. Once your groceries are rung out and the coupons are deducted... look at the bottom of the receipt and it will show you a total of money saved! WRITE yourself a check for that amount, get the check cashes and tuck the money away!! I swear, by doing this I have SAVED so much money!!