When you are looking to cut your household supply and grocery budget, one of the most common savings tips you’ll read online is to use coupons. While I don’t disagree with this tip, I do think certain media outlets (*ahem* TLC’s Extreme Couponing *ahem*) have really exaggerated how much money most people save by using coupons.
I mean, if you have a schedule that allows you to spend more time clipping coupons, organizing coupons, shopping with coupons, and finding room for your massive stockpile of couponed items than most people spend at their full-time jobs, then more power to you. But that is just not realistic for most people, myself included. However, I still know how to use coupons to save money on things I would need to buy anyway, but I will never fill up my garage with thousands of rolls of toilet paper.
Why I Won’t Build a Stockpile
There are lots of reasons why I will never build a huge grocery-store-like stockpile in my garage or basement. One of them is obviously time.
As I already mentioned, I simply do not have the time or energy to hunt down 20 (or more) of the same coupon so I can build a stockpile. Plus stockpile building trips to the grocery store take a lot of planning and strategy too. These days I barely have time do much besides work on my business, so you can bet the last thing I’m going to do is use my limited amount of spare time at the grocery store with coupons.
Another major reason I don’t have a stockpile of food and other goods from couponing is because I’m single. Being single means it can take me a month to eat a big box of cereal, and it can take me almost a week to eat a large pizza. I don’t eat large portions as I’m not growing, and most of the time I’m not feeding anyone else but myself. The problem with having a stockpile of food is that most of it would go bad before I could eat it.
Coupons Save Me Money Anyway
Even though I don’t do massive coupon “hauls”, I’ve still learned how to use coupons to save money on my grocery and household budget. One way I do this is by scanning the newspaper for coupons and sales ads for things I’m planning to buy anyway. Plus, I ignore coupons and ads for things I wasn’t planning to buy. For example, I don’t use coupons for cleaning products very often because I have a cleaning lady and she brings her own supplies. Buying these supplies with coupons to “save money” isn’t really saving at all if I don’t need them.
Finding multiples of coupons can be hard, but sometimes I ask my friends and family to give me theirs if they don’t plan to use them themselves. This allows me to create a few “mini stockpiles” of things I use all the time, like cat litter, dog food, and hairspray. (What can I say, I’m a hairspray addict.)
Saving money with is easy if you learn how to use coupons the right way…and you don’t have to build a huge stockpile to do it. All you have to do is scan common coupons sources, like the newspaper, and be smart about using coupons to save money on products you’d be buying anyway. Just don’t buy extra stuff.
Do you have a huge stockpile of toilet paper in your garage? Be honest. We won’t judge! 😉