I can’t believe it’s already 2015! This past year set a record for me in the couponing world—I accomplished 75% of my financial goals! Now I’m looking forward to challenging myself in 2015 to save even more money. After reviewing what areas I can improve, I’ve found 15 New Year’s Resolutions that will help me fine-tune my efficiency.
1. I will not take the last item on the shelf
If I have an item well stocked in my stockpile, I’ll make sure to not take the last item on the shelf. Instead of being greedy—I want to give other couponers the chance to grab that great deal.
2. I will leave extra coupons on the shelf for the next shopper
One of my favorite things to do is “pay it forward.” I’ve always appreciated when I’ve been the recipient of this deed, so I’ll make sure to do the same this year!
3. I will cut down on my coupon bragging by 50%
I just can’t avoid sharing good news! I have to admit—I love to watch the faces of those who don’t believe that couponing pays off, but this year I’ll make sure to take it down a notch.
4. I will have more patience with store employees
It’s hard not to lose your patience when grocery shopping, but I promise that I’ll get better at it this year. One way to do this is to pick a favorite employee and use their line even if it’s backed up. This will take a little more time, but you won’t lose your patience as often.
5. I will rotate my food stockpile every month
I’ll definitely have to put this on my calendar so I’ll remember to do it—especially since I typically only review my stockpile when I’m looking for something. Just the other day I found four packages of Reese’s cups that expired six months ago. If I had rotated my stockpile, they wouldn’t have gone to waste—lesson learned!
6. I will purchase a new coupon binder
Instead of purchasing a new coupon binder, I normally just patch mine together with duct tape. I’m finally admitting that my binder isn’t salvageable (plus I could end up accidentally losing coupons) so I resolve to buy a new binder as soon as possible!
7. I will take advantage of apps
Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today—I resolve to scan my receipts on the day of the purchase. This ensures that if there is a problem with the scan, I’ll have ample time to correct it before losing the receipt!
8. I will think before making an impulse purchase
We have an agreement in our house not to make a major purchase such as an appliance or a car without sleeping on it. This year I’ll take this same approach to grocery purchases and examine the reason why I’m purchasing the item. If an item isn’t on the shopping list and it’s not on sale, I don’t need it!
9. I will find more coupons for fresh fruits and vegetables
Coupons for fresh fruits and vegetables are hard to find, but I will strive to make this happen. Hopefully this will help me lose the ten pounds I gained over the holidays!
10. I will use my own reusable shopping bags
I’ve bought a ton of reusable shopping bags at drugstores over the years. My problem is remembering to bring them in the store (so I can actually use them). This year I’ll make sure to keep them in my car so I’ll always have them for my shopping excursions.
11. I will spend less time looking for an item
As I look back on 2014, one of my biggest frustrations has been the time I have wasted looking for an item. I resolve to ask a store employee if I can’t find the item within two minutes of looking.
12. I will give items I decide not to purchase to the cashier
I’m totally guilty—many times when I change my mind about purchasing an item, I’ll stick it on a random shelf as I walk by. In 2015, I’m turning over a new leaf and will hand the item to the cashier so it can be returned to its correct location.
13. I will check my receipt before I leave the store
When I see an incorrect charge on my receipt—my stomach drops. If I could kick myself, I would. This mistake could be prevented if I took a few seconds to make sure every item and coupon has rung up correctly. From now on I’ll make sure to keep my eye on how the cashier is ringing up my groceries, and before I leave the store I’ll make sure to double check the receipt.
14. I will not buy items I don’t intend to use
My least favorite purchase of 2014 was some vitamin mix that you add to bottled water. Of course, I got it almost for free after the clearance price and coupons, but I bought two boxes instead of just one. I ended up not liking the flavor, so I gave away both boxes! It was a waste of money, so from now on I’ll make sure to buy only what I know I’ll use.
15. I will always check for a coupon first
This may be the hardest of all! I just bought some Mucinex today at Walgreen’s and I didn’t have a coupon. My wallet has never paid so much for an over-the-counter medication! In 2015, I’ll always make sure to check for a coupon first—no matter how much I need an item.