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Buying what you need while its free or cheap!

Are you new to the couponing scene? So, you want to know more about this coupon using thing you seen someone do the other day? You are at the right place. Get something to drink and get comfortable, while we learn the art of applying coupons to get the best deals. Just relax, sit back in your chair and read.

You will be amazed by the amount of money you can save just using coupons! You will wonder why you ever waited to do this. It’s okay, we’ve all wondered that too!

 

You will find Dede and her crew in Texas. I have found some amazingly high value coupons at Dede’s. Her coupons are great and the prices are reasonable. There is an admin charge on each order.

 

Using coupons is a blessing! Just think all these little pieces of paper, are treated as cash. The more coupons you have the less cash you have to have!! I just love using coupons!!

I have been an avid couponer for over twenty years. I use coupons to maximize my savings while shopping whether its a grocery store or a department store. Its easy, just like getting in to a pool.  You stick one foot out and test the waters then you dive in.  Even if you can’t swim, you still jump in.  Same concept here without the water.  Collect your coupons.  Anyone you know of that gets the paper but doesn’t use the coupons or cuts just one or two out.  Ask them for their left over coupons.  They will add up and fast.

Lets get started now, but as you shop challenge yourself to do better then the last trip, and you will be an old pro in no time. The sooner you get started is the sooner you stop paying ridiculously amounts of money for food and items you use every day. Gone are the days of overpaying for a box of cereal just because you ran out. Don’t stress yourself out over trying to save 90+% on your first trip. Baby steps! Start with a goal of 40-50% and as you catch on, and grow, and you will eventually save on your budget between 70-100%. Back when I started using coupons, I was using coupons to survive.  However, after the internet opened up and I had others like me to talk to. That all changed!! It took me about 9 weeks to begin saving consistently 70-85%. Now when I shop, I try to save around 65-85%! Sometimes even more! I am hoping you are eager to get started! I look forward to you saving from this wonderful hobby just as our family has!!

Where to Find Coupons

The first thing you need is coupons. After you have raided friends and families for their coupon inserts, you may still want more. The most common source is the Sunday newspaper. On Sundays, most of the newspapers come out with one or more inserts. Inserts are small booklets with nothing (usually) but coupons in it. There are the Smart Source, Red Plum, Proctor & Gamble (P&G) and the General Mills. There may be others from time to time, but these are the most common. Check your newspaper before you buy it, to make sure it has the coupon inserts in it. Sometimes papers won’t have coupons in them as you would expect. ALWAYS take the time to double-check and make sure it has the inserts in the paper BEFORE buying the papers. How many papers?? I recommend 2-4 papers per household to start, perhaps more if you have a larger household. We have a household of 3. I buy 6-8 papers per week, when the coupons are good. This takes care of my family’s needs and anything I donate. Keep in mind that it only takes one to two $1.00 coupons out of each paper and then you have paid for the paper and the rest is all profit. Remember you are not going to save 100% the first week, it takes time to collect a good stockpile of coupons. Also, if a deal comes up and you want 6-8 of an item and you only bought 2 papers, then you won’t have the necessary coupons to get many.

The Internet

There are internet printable coupons from different sources. There are many web sites designed to provide internet printable (IP) coupons which print on your printer and take straight to the store and use for instant savings. Just look on the site and scan through the coupons, check the box for the ones you want, and then hit print. Many manufacturer sites allow you to print coupons. You can do a Google search for printable coupons and find many sites to use. Check out a list of coupon sites later in this book that I have compiled from trusted/reliable sources.

Coupons By Mail

You can get coupons in the mail by visiting your manufacturer’s websites and their Facebook pages. If you write a letter to the company, then sometimes they will send you coupons for taking the time to write them.
note: I recommend setting up an email account through Google, or Yahoo that is only for couponing. Most product specific sites request your email address, and you might not want your personal email address to be overloaded with coupon items. I have a designated email account strictly for coupons only!

Printing Coupons Online

There are some great printable coupons. Most online printed coupons will allow you to print 2 copies of each coupon per computer. If you have more then one computer, you can get more coupons.
I will recommend investing in a laser printer. Ink cartridges can be expensive. Printing coupons off the internet will cause you to go through the you will go through a ton of it very quickly! (and have to buy more) printing coupons vs. a laser jet printer. We got a nice laser printer for around $120 and are able to get around 4000 printed coupon pages with it (printer has paid for itself MANY times over!). Regardless of whether you use ink cartridges or toner, recycle the containers at your local office supply store. Find out what their recycling program is like and you may find a hidden gem. Staples will recycle 10 ink or toner cartridges a month for $2. The following month you get an email telling you about the Staples reward money. It is free money to use in their store. It usually expires in a month or so, just watch the expiration dates. Plus being a member gives you free shipping from Staples.com. YAY!!

Store Coupons: Peelies, Blinkies, Tear Pads, and Booklets

The stores are a great place to find coupons while you shop. There are peelies on many items, which are coupons located right on the product, which you just peel off and save. When I find them I usually peel a few for when the item goes on sale, but please do not get greedy with the peelies. They are actually to entice a customer to buy it then and not later. Then there are blinkies. These are the little red boxes in the aisles that have the blinking light and give out coupons. If the item is not on sale; get what you need, AND KNOW YOU WILL USE, and leave the rest for others. The holidays have lots of extra coupons on their products.  You will find displays with tear off pads.  Take a few and hold onto the coupons till the item is on sale.  Lastly, keep an eye out for coupon booklets found anywhere in the store. These can have store coupons, along with manufacturers coupons as well.   Look in the area that has the sales ad you may find coupons or booklets there too.

Magazines

The best magazine for coupons is “All You” magazine. It is dedicated to coupons and often has anywhere from $60-100 in coupons in it. They are good usable coupons and of higher value than most other coupon sources, and many even have lengthy expiration dates. There is an inexpensive deal through southernsavers.com where the magazine is at the best price I have found, and the subscription cost goes toward a good cause. Visit southernsavers.com and type in “All You Magazine” in the search engine to see if they are still offering the deal. You should be able to find cheap subscriptions and may want to get at least two of them….the coupons and number of them as well as longer expiration dates are THAT good! If you save coke points, occasionally Coke will offer a subscription to the magazine  for very little points.  Check sites like magazines.com for deals as well. (If you sign up at this website, they will email you $5 gift certificates frequently.) Even if the magain are not still on sale, get the magazine anyway because it will pay for itself MANY times over!

Cashback for Shopping Online
It does not matter if you are buying magazines from magazines.com, or ink for your printer from inkcartridges.com.  Before you hit the submit my order button, stop and back up.  Go to cashreporter.com and research the company you are buying from.  Even if you are shopping with VictoriaSecret.com, if you shop with Ebates.com and click through their links then you will make 1% on that purchase.  I realize that’s not much payback but it still adds up over time.  I used to work for a company as their purchase agent for office supplies, that was some serious shopping back then.  For years there was only Ebates, but that has changed.  There are many more companies available and the ones listed below I have tried and checked out.  If you will click on their links it should open up a new tab for you to move over and sign up with each company.  For instance, 123inkjets.com, ink4jets.com, inkcartridges.com are a few of the ink and toner cartridge companies owned by LD Products.com. I have used 123inkjets for years.  I have a laser printer. My toners at Staples are over $75 each.  I can get recycled toner cartridges with a warranty at LD Products for a lot less. Now, LD Products is not listed for cash back but the others are.  The last time I bought my toner, 123inkjets did not carry it any more.  I found inkcartridges.com had a higher cashback % then the others (although all are owned by the same parent company).  I was able to find the toner cartridges I needed and I would receive 14.5% cashback for linking through fatwallet.com (also owned by Ebates).  Lets do the breakdown, I bought 4.  Staples 4 toner cartridges would have been 319.96 before tax.

I chose to use inkcartridges.com.  I bought 4 compatible Brand Black Laser Toner for HP 78A for $21 each. * 4 = $84.00 plus tax 6.99 minus 10% off coupon 8.40 total OOP $82.59 but I earned 14.5% cashback on my net purchase so I will be getting $10.96 back for a whopping $71.63 / 4 = 17.90 each.  Yeah, I can continue to use my laser printer for another year.  By the way, there is a 2 year warranty on their cartridges.  If for any reason, you have any issue with any of their cartridges, they will replace it totally for free.  I have had one issue in 11 years. I am very confident you will receive products made with the highest quality products.


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E-Bay/Coupon Clipping Services
You can buy coupons on eBay. However, due to recent changes on eBay and their strict policy about listing coupons. The prices of coupons have really gotten outrageous. You should not have to spend more then .20¢ per coupon. There are many coupon clipping places online and more are popping up weekly. I will have some links to some of the places I have used and I know they are safe to order from. I normally order prior to or during the week of the sale, but make sure you will get them before the sale expires or do not buy them. If the items you want are out of stock ask for a rain check, then go and find coupons for the rain check. This is a way to get an extension on the sale. Once you receive your coupons, then go to the store with coupons and rain checks. Some websites have inside knowledge on what is going to be on sale the following week, it will give you a chance to order your coupons. You can purchase coupons for a handling fee at coupon clipping sites. This is a great time saver! Different regions get different coupons. Florida, and Texas have the best coupons, so I buy from them whenever I get a chance. Some stores, in my area, will double coupons. I want to be able to shop and get the best value for my time. Coupon clipping services allow me to do just that. Most of the time, I can get a higher value coupon then what is coming out in my local area. If I only want 4 of them, then I can buy 4 of that one coupon. However, if it is a “Hot” coupon then the charge will be higher as well as the demand. It is a great way to get a variety of the coupons you may want. However, besides the handling fee per coupon, you are also charged an administrative fee (usually .50¢ per order) and postage.

 Coupon Dede’s ~ Texas Click to visit my friend, Dede

Bargain Coupon Clippers ~ Kentucky Click to visit my friends at BCC

We clip u save – Tennessee

The Coupon Clippers ~ Florida Click to visit Rachael

        Klip2save ~ Tennessee Click to visit Klip2save

The explosion on Facebook has really opened up the opportunity to get coupons in Tennessee from Los Angeles.

The possibilities are endless.

Lets discuss some websites which can be extremely useful. There are hundreds more (make sure they are reliable), but these are a few to get you started. Just click on their names, it will open a new window.
Southern Savers

Hot Coupon World

iheartPublix.com

Red Plum

Smart Source

Southern Savers is the website I use the most. They have saved me a tremendous amount of time. They are user friendly sites, legitimate, and have discussion boards to get help from other couponer! The more you read the better you will be. Knowledge is power and will lead to greater savings!! As far as grocery stores, if you have a Publix near you, then that is the store I suggest you use since they tend to have the most Buy One Get One free (BOGO) deals, are well stocked with merchandise, and are the most coupon friendly in my area. My BI-LO is coupon friendly, and offers several BOGO deals, but does not stay as well stocked. I do not have a Kroger in my area, but I have heard very good things about Kroger. If you have a Food Lion in your area, realize that many are NOT coupon friendly. They do not double coupons system wide. However, it is worth checking out their deals. You might find a few items worth your while. I normally spend about 5% of my food budget at Food Lion and the other 95% at Publix and Bi-Lo. Cutting Coupons Time is so precious, so anything that saves time when getting coupons organized is extremely important. If we turn this into another job we probably won’t do it. I take the inserts and lay them out on a table and take the first page from each of them and put them in a stack and then the second page and put them in a stack. So if I have 10 inserts then I will have 10 of the first page stacked and then 10 of the second page stacked and so on. Once I get them neatly stacked, I gather the inserts up and staple the coupons, try avoid stapling the upc barcode or the expiration date. Then I cut all 10 at one time. Paper cutters are great, but be careful with how many it will cut. This will save you time. I use small baskets labeled with the category, as I cut I organize in the basket so when I file the coupons I can do one category at a time. Otherwise, I would be flipping back and forth through my binder. Now let’s talk about storage