Excuses, Excuses, Excuses…

When people find out that I use coupons and codes so much, they often say whhhy? Or ask if it’s really worth the time. In my opinion it’s totally worth it! Once you know what you’re looking for and where to get it, it takes very little time actually. And all that money I save can be used for more fun things.

I mean think about it! If you could take one hour out of your life each week to clip coupons and do some planning and end up saving $50, that equals $50/hour. Is that worth it? Of course it is. Who wouldn’t want to get paid $50 for 1 hour of sitting on your butt and cutting things out!

But again and again I hear the same excuses on why people don’t use coupons. Here are the top 2 reasons I hear along with my justifications/solutions:

  • Coupons are a waste of paper – Yes most coupons are printed on paper, but there are also ecoupons, mobile coupons, and ones that you can load to a card. Whenever I cut paper coupons I always throw the scraps of paper in my recycling bin and I always recycle my newpaper.
  • They take too much of my time – I believe time is money. So I may take a couple more minutes looking for and cutting coupons before heading out or going shopping, but to me the money I save makes up for the time I spent and then some. Plus it feels awesome to see how much you could of spent, but didn’t have to :D!
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What is Extreme Couponing?

Have you seen TLC’s new show Extreme Couponing? I love this show.. imagine paying only $8 for $800 worth of groceries! WOOHOO! I love to save money with coupons, but I am not an “extreme couponer” in any way.

This post will just be a little taste of what it is and how to get started. If you really are interested you can do some research and you will find tons of sites and communities dedicated to extreme couponing. I may actually try to do this one day in the future, for the challenge of it. But I have to warn you.. you may not spend much in money, but you will have to spent a lot of time to become a great extreme couponer.

There are many levels of couponing. There is the lower “clip and save” level, who only use coupons on things they use, (me :P). However, the extreme couponer uses coupons on things they will use now, but also on what they may need in the future, like months ahead.

Extreme Couponing is a way to save huge amounts of money buying items shoppers purchase every day. It also allows shoppers to store a pantry full of household items and groceries with very little money and in case of a job loss or some sort of catastrophe, there is a stockpile of food to survive on.

So how can you get started? Well clipping coupons of course! There are many different kinds of coupons and ways to get them: The Sunday newspaper, manufacturers’ coupons, store coupons, weekly circulars, your mailbox, your local newspaper, online, blogs, company/brand websites, previous purchases, etc. The goal is to get as much high-value coupons as you can get.

Once the coupons are collected, the organization begins! You should sort out the coupons, categorize, and look at what will be on sale that day/week at the store you will be shopping at. You should look for stores that double or triple coupons in your area and talk to the store manager often, to make sure coupon policies haven’t changed.

After that, you’re set to go! Of course you will need a lot of free time, patience, and commitment, but who knows? It may be worth it!

Packaging and Placement: The Top Ways Grocery Stores Rip You Off!

So this week I went to the grocery store to just pick up one thing and ended up with a basket full of stuff.  Have you ever done that? Spent way more at a store then you intended to and felt mad at yourself? Well stop feeling like a fool.. there may be a reason for this madness!

Have you ever noticed that generic or store brand products are usually in plain or boring colors and are never as bright and vibrant as famous, well known brands? This also goes along with the consumers preconceived notions that if a product is brand named, then it must work and vice versa. And as a result if it costs more, that’s because it works, looks, tastes, or is more effective. This isn’t always the case and you should always be a conscious and critical shopper. Don’t always believe the fancy packaging and bright lights, there is usually little to no difference in quality or performance.

Next time you go to a grocery store take a look around the aisle. The most expensive and brand named products are always located at eye level on supermarket shelves because these items make companies the most money. Value, generic, and store brands are usually located on the lower levels or on the top shelf where they literally take more effort to get to!  The average person will rarely look all the way up or down and scan all the items.

Lastly, the next time you go shopping, notice that everyday things like milk, eggs, and bread are usually located at the back of the store, which forces you to scroll down the aisles of carefully and enticingly displayed products before you get what you came for ;).