Lesson 2 – So How Do I Keep, Organize and Store My Coupons?
So how do I keep up with all of these coupons I have? I am so glad you asked. While I am always looking for better ways to organize, here are some tips that will help you to get started:
Keeping Your Coupons At Home:
Every week I go through and clip the coupons from the paper for the items that I know I will need and buy. For those coupons that are left over, I organize them in manila folders, write the date from which newspaper I got them from and file the folders in an accordion folder by date. This way if there is a deal on something for an item that I may not use, but can get and give or donate, I know where to go to get the coupon to clip. When I first start to coupon, I would file the entire insert by date and then clip as I prepared for my shopping trips. However, I have learned to spend some time each week clipping my coupons vs. waiting until it’s time to go shopping because I always seem to be rushing to get ready for my shopping trips or would forget to leave a coupon at home. Plus, you may run into a deal (I called this God’s Favor deals) and you will always be prepared to take advantage of it. Sundays and Tuesdays are the days that I set aside to clip my coupons so find a time in your schedule that works best for you and your family. Coupons that are printed or come in the mail should be clipped or placed in a “To be Clipped” folder for you to clip when you have time. Please organize your coupons in whatever system works for you. There is no right or wrong way to organize.
How Do I Take My Coupons With Me To The Store?
So how do you take all of the coupons with you to the store? The coupon binder is the most popular way to carry your coupons, but I didn’t start out with a binder. So if you are just starting out you may want to use a small plastic accordion style organizer that will fit in your purse. I graduated to my coupon binder after I had been couponing consistently for about six months.
The binder is the preferred choice for me and most people who consistently coupon on purpose. You can choose a simple 3 ring binder or a zip up binder. I used an old school zip up binder that my son was no longer using as my binder. You will then need to get baseball card inserts to store the coupons in. They have 9 slots to a page and make it easy to see the coupons you have. You will also need divider tabs so you can divide your coupons in your binder by categories. You can get these from Walmart or your local office supply store. The categories will depend on your household shopping needs, but I recommend:
Baby (diapers, training pants, formula, wash, etc.)
Baking (mixes, frosting, sugar, etc.)
Beverages (coffee, tea, juice, etc.)
Condiments (ketchup, mustard, BBQ sauce)
Dairy (butter, milk, cheese, eggs, etc.)
Household Items (cleaners, paper towels, paper plates, trash bags)
Miscellaneous (light bulbs, batteries, etc.)
Pasta/Rice/Helpers (pasta, spaghetti sauce, rice, etc.)
Pet (food, toys, medications, etc.)
Think about all of the items you buy on a regular basis as well as how things are organized in stores for additional category ideas.
Whatever organizing system you decide to use, I also suggest that you also keep a calculator, paper, scissors and a pen with you. The calculator comes in handy for calculating the final cost of an item after coupons. The paper pen comes in handy to write notes about special deals and other things you see while you are out shopping. Also, put your name and contact information in your binder in case you lose it. Place a copy of your store’s coupon policy in your binder as well just in case you run into issues at the store.
Stay tuned for tomorrow’s lesson because it will be very important for you to have one of them (hint the word begins with a “B.”)
Did you miss Lesson 1: Coupons – Where Do I Get Them?
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