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When I first started couponing two years ago, my family was not on board. I am pretty sure my husband wanted to check me into a mental institution when I came home with five free deodorants. My children hated shopping because of the amount of time I spent in each store, and I no longer let them buy things we didn’t have coupons for. It has taken a long time, but my husband is now very involved, and my children don’t even remember when we could buy things that didn’t have a coupon. Now that I have found a way to involve my family in this “krazy” shopping, I have a few tips on getting your own family involved.
- Show him the money: If your spouse sees the money you are saving by couponing, he will be more likely to join in. My husband was very skeptical when I first started. However, as soon as he realized that I only spent pennies whereas he was spending hundreds, he quickly learned that we both needed to use coupons while shopping.
- Write a list: I have found that writing a detailed list of everything grouped by where it can be found, its price, and the exact coupon to use helps my husband more than just sending him with a general list and a stack of unorganized coupons.
- Clip the coupons: If I have already clipped all of the coupons, my husband is more likely to use them. Two weeks ago he came home with a 3 pack of gum that cost $3.28! I couldn’t believe it! I had 10 Mentos UP2U coupons waiting to be clipped that would have given him free gum. I have now made a conscious effort to have coupons clipped and ready to go for the items he likes.
- Make it a date: Some of my favorite times have been when my husband and I hit up the local drugstores after the movie on a Friday night. This was especially helpful in the beginning when my husband still didn’t understand Register Rewards and Extra Care Bucks.
- Don’t be the nag: If I nag my husband when he spends too much at the store, he is less likely to listen to anything else I have to say. Instead, I have learned to bite my tongue and gently remind him of the sales/corresponding coupons for the week, if he is stopping by the store on his way home from work.
- Give them the scissors: My six year old daughter loves helping me clip coupons. I used to worry about her cutting off bar codes, but as I have let the control go, she has become quite the expert.
- Let them write the list: This is another area where my six year old daughter loves to help. I will tell her what to write and she writes it down. Since she already knows what we are buying when we go to the store, she doesn’t ask for extras.
- Let them “pay”: My two year old and four year old daughters LOVE giving the coupons to the cashier. This is a great way to distract them from all of those expensive treats you find in every checkout aisle. It is also a great way to soften up some otherwise cranky cashiers.
- Make them the organizers: By allowing your children to put the coupons in your coupon binder, you save a lot of time. Plus, this is my least favorite job about couponing, so it is nice to recruit my little ones who love this job!
- Be patient: Allow your kids some room to learn. The more patient you can be with them, the more they are going to learn to love couponing.
I have really enjoyed watching my once skeptical husband come home proud of how much he saved from the store. Also, my kids now ask me if an item they want is “free yet” and don’t seem to mind the extra time we spend in the store. My hobby has turned into a way for my husband and me to spend time together and teach our children how to save money. Remember to be patient with your family as they learn the “kraziest” way to shop and have fun!
This has been a guest post by Mary from Hickory Creek, TX
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