Extreme Couponing Tip: Finding Balance
Anything as rewarding and fun as couponing can be addicting. Once you start couponing and saving big, it can be hard to stop or slow down. Many newbies, after experiencing their first coupon “high”, that rush when you save big, want to cash in on every sale at every store. This can lead to burn out causing important things, like family or education, to take a back seat. So what’s a krazy couponer to do? Read on!
Stockpile: Once you gain a reasonable stockpile, you’ll be heading to the store less often. You’ll already have all the shampoo and deodorant you need for the next year, and your cereal stash will put your neighbors to shame. A stockpile also frees you from having to run to the store every afternoon to buy what you need for dinner. Instead you can go “shopping” in your stockpile and spend more time cooking, studying, or having family time.
Set your pace: Couponing is not a sprint, so there’s no need to dash about to every store as fast as you can to beat every one else. Couponing is not a big conspiracy that is going to shut down as soon as the stores find out. Your worst enemy will be yourself if you take on too much and become burnt out. Set a pace you can maintain. Sitting down and scheduling couponing time (clipping, organizing, planning out trips, and shopping) can be very beneficial. Know when to slow down, focus on other things, and you’ll find couponing to be a relaxing, enjoyable, and profitable hobby!
Start small: Though it’s tempting to go to 6 different stores every week to get all the great deals, stick with one or two when starting out. Learn the coupon policy, and focus on those weekly rock bottom prices. Seasoned coupon shoppers may frequent one or two grocery stores and a drugstore each week.
Sale cycles: Remember that this is not the one and only time that toothpaste will be free or pasta will cost under a quarter. The industry standard for coupon and sale cycles is three to four months. Instead of buying a three-year supply of spaghetti sauce all at once, just get enough to get your family by for three to four months. For non-perishables, having a year supply is a good target.