Monday, December 22, 2014

How to stack coupons.

First off, there are 2 coupons. The manufacture coupon you can print online and you get in the Sunday paper. 2nd. stores have their own coupons. If you look on the coupon, where it would usually say manufacture coupon it has the store's name. Some stores will accept both. For instance if you had $1.00 manufacture coupon on Prell shampoo and they had $1.00 store coupon for Prell shampoo they would accept and take both coupons. giving you a combined savings of $2.00.
The only stores in out area that stacks are list in the list below.

CVS- you can use a store coupon with a manufacture coupon and you can also use any extra care bucks you have from a prior transaction. This is called a triple stack.

Dollar General-They will allow you to combine their store coupons (you will need to set up an account) with a manufacture coupon. (Caution: If you choose to print coupons from their site a lot of them will print manufacture coupons unless it states it is a Dollar Market Coupon)

Rite Aid- Also triple stacks...A manufacture coupon with a Rite Aid store coupon. With these you can also use a Rite Aid video values coupon. (you watch a short video clip for a high dollar coupon.)

Target- Also triple stacks. A manufacture coupon with a Target coupon and you can also use a Target Cartwheel offer with these.

Walgreen's-At Walgreen's you can use manufacture coupon and store coupon. At the same time you can also use Register Rewards gotten in a prior transaction. But at Walgreen's the total coupons cannot outnumber the total products. In other words if you buy 1 bottle of shampoo you can't use a Walgreen's q and a manufacture q unless you buy something else. You can use both q's on the same product but you have to have another something or other in your buggy to offset the number of q's compared to the number of products. 

Publix- stacks, you can use 1 manufacture with a store coupon. Publix also takes competitors coupons.

Family Dollar- stacks use 1 manufacture coupon with store coupon. (Caution these print as manufacture unless stated Family Dollar).

Tip: try to match these coupons with weekly sales to save even more.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Sale circular schedules....

This is the schedule for the store sales circulars, They run from week to week unless they are running some kind of holiday or 3 day sales.



Big Lots-Sundays


Dollar Market-Sundays

Family Dollar-Sunday (They now also price match)

Food Lion-Wednesday





Rite Aide-Sunday

Save A Lot-They usually come out 2 times a month and the ads are good for 2 weeks. Usually the 1st. and 15th.



Wal Mart-Sunday

Another couponing tip.

When you price match, if you will take tape or stickers with you it will save a lot of time at the checkout. Just write on the tape/sticker the price you are matching and the stpore it is at.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Saving money without couponing

Don't want to go through all the "couponing stuff"? No problem. I will show you how to save without using coupons, you won't save as much but you will save some.

First, if you are brand loyal, you won't save as much. It's about saving money and watching sales. 

A Consumer Reports study found generic or store brand items were as good if in some cases better. A panel of Chefs were questioned and they admitted when shopping they used store brands more often than not.

Let's get started:

1. Always, always go with a list. Get what is on that list and nothing more.

2. Take cash, if you allow yourself to spen x ammount of dollars and that is all you have with you, you can't over spend.

3. Take stock of your pantry and freezer. If it is like mine there are some things that need to be used up.

4. Cut your ammount of meat back. If a recipe calls for a pound of hamburger meat you can get by with 1/2 pound in some cases. Just decrease the ammount of liquid you add. In tacos and chili you can cut back on the meat by adding beans. For 1lb. of beef use 1/2 of beef and 1/2 lb. beans.

5.Buy ingredients you can use in more than one meal, this keeps from wasting the extra from the one meal.

6. Use leftovers.  If you have chicken freeze the leftovers for stir frys or chicken pot pie. Freeze anything. Most everything can be frozen to use later.

7. Process the foods yourself. It is a lot cheaper to buy whole fruits and vegetables and chop them yourself than buy a package of already chopped.

8. Beware of eye level shelves. Most of the most expensive brands are directly at eye level or are displayed on the end of an aisle so you will think they are on sale.

9. The ideal thing you want to do is learn sales cycles. An item will go on sale every 6-8 weeks. We will learn about this later. You want to buy and stockpile while it is on sale. You want to buy enough at the sale price to do you till the next sale. Never buying full price.

10. Always check out clearance sections.

11. Use store's rewards programs.

12. Produce is cheaper in season. Freeze for later use.

13. Shop at discount stores like Save a Lot and Aldi's.

14. Cook from scratch whenever possible. No time? Use a crock pot. I have one that is 3 in one. put in 2 veggies and a meat and when you get in from work, dinner is ready.

15. Make your own spice mixes such as taco mix or chili mix. Google for recipes.

 You will need to have your store sales circulars. If you don't want to buy a Sunday paper you can go online.

Make out your weekly menu plan around what is on sale for that week.
 If you have a Wal Mart in your area, they will price match within a 50 mile radius of the store. They also have a Savings Catcher. What you do is, save your reciept. Then either go online here and type in your reciept's number and date or if you have a smartphone you can download the app and just scan the code on the bottom of the reciept. They will look at the other prices in your area and if they find that item cheaper they will give you the difference. When the ammount adds up to what you want to redeem they will give you a Wal Mart card with the ammount.

If you have a smartphone, here are some other apps you can earn money by buying certain items.

Grocery IQ

For your weekly store circulars:

For comparing 2 items to see which is the best buy:

Don't pack all those store cards with you. Here is an app you can scan your cards into and you can have them wherever you go:

Thursday, November 27, 2014

The rest of the ways ot organize coupons


The index card box method:

I used this until I had too many coupons. Great for starting out though. You can get the A-Z dividers of flip them over , and with stickers label them any way you want. Whichever works best for you. Or if you don't want to buy the dividers, just buy the small stick on tabs and make your own. You can label a card with each store's name and the coupons you know you are going to use in that store paper clip them to it. It will save time.

Envelope method- My starter one L.O.L. I would just label envelopes with the categories or the stores and drop them in my purse. The coupons I new I was going to use I would paper clip to the front.

Accordian file method- I personally don't like this one but you might. I needed more dividers than it had. These can be bought at Walmart. Small check size for coupons or large file size to file your inserts in case you want to only cut the coupons you are going to use and save the rest. This is also called the hybrid method if you save both the cut coupons and the rest of the full inserts.

Electronic coupons-we will cover these later.

Coupon file- This is another of my go to's. If I am in a hurry or don't feel like lugging my coupon binder I will use this. Sometimes I will carry this anyway with the coupons in it I know for sure I am going to use. It has pockets already pre-labeled or sometimes comes with blank one's you can use yourself. You can pick these up at most dollar stores for $1.00

Photo box-  Another one of my "first tries" A lot of people like these. You can organize them with the bigger index cards. I used one for the longest time until I dumped it one day in Wal Mart and had to go home and put it all back together. I kept a large rubber band around the top to keep from the top coming off but it got old and snapped. I soon went to the zipper binder. Problem solved.

The no cut file box- This is where you file the whole inserts. You 
will file them by the date you got them. A file box works good. You make out your grocery list and using a coupon database (we will also cover this a little later) it tells you which insert the coupon you want is in. This is good, a lot of people likes this but for me it took too much time typing thins in for the database. And also sometimes when I have time I want all my coupons with me. Every so often I will take my coupons and check out all the clearance places in all the local stores. you can really save money doing this.

Maintaining you coupon system, whichever you choose to use:

I hate this part but you MUST go through and remove all the expired coupons. I try to do this once every month or two. Lately I have started, as I file a coupon i will check all the q's in that category. It saves time later on. Some people will color code the coupons. Take a different color marker for each month and mark them before they file them. This is something I want to do but have never gotten around to it. It would make sorting through them so much easier.

Most of all....

1. Choose the method that works best for you.

2. Most important have fun.

3. Start out small, take only a few coupons to one store and see what you can do. It took me a long time with trial and error to have my coupon collection and stock pile. If you are dedicated you will get there but it won't happen over night

4. If you feel yourself getting burned out, quit for awhile. I have to ever so often, then I will pick it up again.

5. Don't get discouraged. You will make a mistake. You will have an expired coupon at the register or forget a coupon. Thats ok. Sometimes you will get a cashier that hates to fool with coupons. Learn them and go to a different one next time. You will soon find the cashiers that you like to work with.

6.  Don't set high expectations. Don't expect, just starting out to save $50 off your grocery bill. Can I do it now? Sometimes. It just depends on how the local sales are running  and what coupons I have, if things match up just right.

Next time for those who don't want to cut coupons, I can show you how to save without coupons. You will not save as much as with coupons, but you will save.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Organizing coupons Binder method part 3

You will need some type of sleeve to put your coupons in. There are several you can use. You can go with baseball card sleeves like in the pictures above. they are at Wal Mart where all the collectable cards are.

You can use 5x7 photo sleeves.

I have both, but prefer the 5x7 photo sleeves. You have room so they will hold the bigger coupons.

Also If you have more than 1 coupon there is room you can arange them in a way like I did above so you can see all the expirations dates at one glance. If you have very many there won't be room but for 3 or 4 small ones you can do it this way.

I also suggest you keep a copy of the store's coupon policy at each store you go to. I have never had to get mine out but know a few peopple who have. Espically if the cashier is a new employee.

Here are the links for the most popular stores: