Living on your own in an apartment can get pretty pricey. You have to budget for rent, utilities, food, car payments and more. Fortunately, you can save money while shopping by creating a coupon book.
Get to work now then take your book shopping to watch the final cost at the checkout counter decrease. Here’s how to organize coupons:
The first step to compiling a coupon book is to gather up all the savings you can. You’ll find deals in a variety of sources, so keep your eyes peeled.
Newspapers: The Sunday paper comes with an entire section of coupons from grocery stores and other retailers. Pick up the paper the next time you’re out on a Sunday and bring it home.
Manufacturer Websites: Manufacturers will often create coupons for their products, which you can find on their website. Get online and sign up for a newsletter or email notifications, which will send you deals and information on sales.
Grocery Store Card: Grocery stores and convenience stores like CVS and Walgreens offer customers a card that gives them discounted deals on certain items. For example, your CVS card could grant you a two-for-one deal on a bottle of shampoo, a discount other shoppers won’t get.
Join a Database: Find coupons online from a variety of manufacturers via databases. These sites compile coupons and offer them to users. Some examples include, Southern Savers, Deal Seaking Mom and The Krazy Coupon Lady.
Now that you have them, you may be wondering how to organize coupons. Start by cutting out coupons that you’ll actually use. If you don’t buy the product, don’t keep the coupon. Next, place them in categories. For example, all of your coupons for shampoo, conditioner and face wash can go into a “showering” category, while yogurt, cheese or milk might be “dairy.” Place your store cards in their own group.
Periodically go through your coupons and remove the expired ones. Try to use coupons in the order they expire so that you don’t waste them or miss an opportunity for savings.
Get a Coupon Book
An accordion-style folder is the best option for a coupon book. Make sure each pocket has a tab that you can label according to categories. Place your coupons into the proper category tab. Reserve one folder spot for “in use” coupons.
When you go shopping, you can rifle through the right category based on what you’re buying. Keep the book in a convenient location inside of your apartment or car—perhaps next to or in your reusable bags—so that you remember to grab it when you head out.
Pull out the coupons you’ll be using before you reach the checkout so that you don’t hold up the line. The same goes for the coupons on your phone. It might help to pull out the appropriate coupon as you shop. For example, when you grab the yogurt also pull out the corresponding coupon and place it in the “in use” tab. When you get to the checkout you can pull out all the items in that tab.