Hi! My name is TJ! I am the author of MeasuringFlower.com. I am so excited to be sharing a post with you the readers of Learning to be a Darlin' Mommy and Wife!
Let me begin by telling you a little bit about why I coupon. I began to coupon in December of 2009 out of necessity. My husband and I had been married for only three months and, in spite plans of not having any children for several years, surprise! I was pregnant with our adorable son! And since my husband and I had decided before we were even married that I would be a stay-at-home mom once children entered the scene, this meant I would soon have to quit my job as a chef. Which also meant a decrease in income. Thus, I turned to couponing as a means to remain a stay-at-home mom. And I began my website, Measuring Flower, to help others learn the art of couponing.
Now let's go over the basics of couponing. There are two different kinds of coupons: manufacturer coupons and store coupons. Manufacturer coupons are found in Sunday coupon inserts and through various other sources; store coupons are most commonly found in the store's ad or in a store-distributed booklet.
When you go grocery shopping, you can stack coupons. Let's use a toothbrush as an example. Say you have a manufacturer's coupon for $.50 off a toothbrush that costs $1.75 full price and a store coupon for another $.50 off. Use the two together (i.e. stack them) and you receive $1 off, which puts the price of the toothbrush down to $.75, a savings of 57%.
You can also stack coupons and use them in combination with a sale. Say the $1.75 toothbrush is on sale for $1.25. Take advantage of the sale and use the manufacturer's coupon and the store coupon and you get the toothbrush for $.25, an 86% savings.
Even better, lets say the $1.75 toothbrush is on sale for $1.25 at a grocery store that doubles coupons. Use your $.50 off manufacturer's coupon which doubles to $1 off and the price drops to $.25. Use your $.50 off store coupon which doesn't usually double and the price drops to -$.25. You just got a toothbrush for free (sorry, the surplus $.25 disappears), a 100% savings!
Using coupons strategically like this, I save anywhere from 40 to 90% each time I go grocery shopping. Unfortunately, the misconception about this is that it takes a ton of work in order to save this much. This is not true! Utilizing deal sites such as CouponMom.com significantly cuts the work out of couponing. These sites match the sales and the coupons for you so all you do is pick which deals you want to use, gather the necessary coupons, and go shopping.
What about all the clipping? Well, if you use a site like Coupon Mom, there's no excessive clipping involved. You simply save the coupon inserts from the Sunday paper and date them. Then check your local grocery stores on Coupon Mom and it tells you which inserts contain the coupons you need. Therefore, you clip only the coupons you need when you need them. No extra clipping! Using this system, I only spend about 15 to 20 minutes a week planning my grocery trip (including clipping coupons).
Now that you know the basics of the art of couponing and how to do it quickly and easily, I hope you'll give it a try! Oh, and for more information and for more ways to save, please read my article How to Coupon and my various posts on savvy saving.
Thank you for letting me write a guest post, Nikki! And thank you for reading, Learning to be a Darlin' Mommy & Wife followers! Have a great day and God bless!