When does a stockpile become clutter? I recently had to answer this question when my husband called me a “hoarder.” Or maybe he said I had hoarding tendencies? Either way, I took this to heart when I realized my stockpile was overtaking my house and I had not “pruned” it to stay within the boundaries of my needs. I had to address the current status of my stockpile and determine where I had lost my way in the wonderful world of coupons.

There are four points I identified that helped me reduce my clutter to an acceptable, controlled stockpile.

Sign #1 of an out-of-control stockpile: Overflow

A recent inventory of my stockpile revealed laundry detergent on the floor beside the shelf. I had ketchup stacked on the stairwell going to the second floor. There were bags of razors and shaving cream in the spare bedroom, which is on the other side of the house from the stockpile in the laundry room. My “ah ha” moment was when my husband said I was a hoarder! That really got my attention. Was my focus on getting the deal greater than my focus on what my needs actually are? I looked at my shampoo shelf (yes, I have a whole shelf just for hair products) and it was full. Note to self: I do not need any hair care products for at least six months. If I do encounter a deal that I cannot walk away from (for example: Dove shampoo marked down to $1.19 at Walgreens and I have a $1.00 coupon), then I can donate what I don’t need. When I found that shampoo deal last week, I bought it, put it in the stockpile and donated another brand!

If you think overflow may be a problem for you, ask yourself these questions:

1. Have I looked at my stockpile in the past week?
2. Do I have to leave purchases in the bags until I find storage room for them?
3. Am I stepping over stockpile items as I walk through my house?
4. Have I exceeded the limits of my storage space?
5. Is my family complaining that we have too much stuff?

If you answered “yes” to these questions, you may want to start rethinking how you manage your stockpile. Stay tuned for more signs of an out-of-control stockpile and learn what you can do to reign it in!

This is a guest post by Tammy from Saint Pauls, NC

Is Your Stockpile Out of Control? Part 1