Learn How To Use Coupons and Shop Strategically

Learn How To Use Coupons and Shop Strategically
When you combine your coupons with store sales you will find that you can get a lot more for a lot less. You should stock up on items that are a great deal. You want to buy enough to get you through until there is another sale on that item. So, in order to understand what a great deal is first you need to know more about the prices of the items you are buying.

Let’s take cereal as an example. Most people pay around $3.00 for a box of cereal. Cereal is an item that goes on sale often, so it is easy to stock up on. When you see cereal on sale for $1.50, that is a good price, but you can do even better. Let’s say you have a $1.00 off coupon that you could use on that $1.50 cereal, so it would make the final price $ .50. Anytime I can get cereal for under $1.00 a box, I stock up! (I store my extra cereal on shelves in my garage) . So, if my kids finish off a box of cereal, they only have to run out to the garage to get another box, instead of me going to the store and spending the regular price for a box of cereal.

Click here to find out how to Grow and Maintain a Stockpile.

I would suggest being aware of how much you spend on certain items when you go to the store. This way when you see a great sale price you will know that you should buy more than just enough to get you through the next week, you should buy enough to get you through a couple weeks, a month or even a year (depending on the item, its cost and expiration date).

Before you even head to the store, you should look at the ad, decide what are great prices, check for matching coupons and then make your list. It also helps a lot to plan your weekly menus around what is on sale. Once you have a stockpile, you won’t necessarily have to plan the menus with what is on sale, because you will already have what you need at home. The great thing about the Internet, is that you can easily find people that have done the majority of the work for you.

I use Hot Coupon World as a resource for sale items and coupon match-ups. I try my best to post on the blog every week the match-ups for Walgreen’s, Rite-Aid, Albertson’s or any other store that has great deals, so you can check back here for that. I should mention that when you shop at these stores, it is best to ONLY buy the sale items. It is better to do your “regular” grocery shopping at stores that have lower everyday prices. Some examples would be Walmart, Winco, etc. I find that I can do a lot of my “regular” shopping at Fred Meyer, because they have great produce and good prices. They usually always have great deals on the basics we buy like, produce, bread, milk and bagels.

And make sure to snag a local newspaper (or a few copies) for all the coupons to match up with sales!

If you shop with this method, you will find that you will slowly increase your short term food storage. I can honestly say that it is a great feeling walking into our garage and seeing shelves of food that weren’t there before. It is very comforting to know that we will have food for several months if anything should happen. I really suggest that you give it a try, and stick with it! Before you know it, you will have more food and have spent less for it.

The following method also works for health and beauty aids. You can find so many FREE items from both Walgreen’s and Rite-Aid with their rebate programs. The health and beauty aids usually have some high value coupons that will help make them free, or really cheap. The majority of the Pert shampoo you see pictured here was totally free, because the value of the coupon matched a sale price at Rite-Aid once. Bring your coupons to Target, and check the clearance health and beauty items, I find lots of good deals that way too.

Click here to check out the Frugal Living Mom Coupon Database

You will eventually get to the point where you won’t need to buy certain items unless they are free. I certainly don’t need to buy any shampoo for awhile, and I know that more opportunities for free shampoo will come up before I use everything I have.

So, if you are just starting out, I hope this gives you some ideas on how to best use coupons and the sales to help you get more for less.

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