Tips to Cut Down Monthly Home Expenses
Every Wednesday and Sunday the local newspaper is usually stuffed
to the brim with coupons and sale ads. The way to get coupons to work
for you is to find out which ones to clip and use and which ones to
just throw away.
At the same time, a few tips on what you should look for and what to stay away from while taking advantage of using coupons.
Begin by creating a shopping list of all the items you use and buy on a regular basis. Then make a short list of items that you would like to try if the price was right. Now go through your local newspaper and search for coupons that relate to items on your list. Other places that may have coupons can include direct mailer coupon books, savings clubs, or the grocery stores themselves.
Now that you have a list of the items you use and a separate stack of coupons, begin to go through the stack of coupons individually and see if any of them can be used to save money on items you regularly buy. If the coupon items are on the list set it aside, if it is not throw it away. If a coupon is found for an item that you forgot to put on the list and you regularly buy it, keep the coupon. If you do not buy that item on a regular basis just throw the coupon away.
Coupons are just a form of advertising and retailers know how to take advantage by using this type of marketing. The way to make using coupons successful is not to be sold on items that you do not use. The thing to keep in mind is that using a coupon to buy something can only be considered a savings if the item that is being purchased is needed and there is not a cheaper
alternative, like a store brand.
A simple example is if you have a coupon to purchase a can of Green Giant corn and save $.50, but the store brand corn is $.75 cheaper than the name brand before any coupons, the better deal is to purchase the store brand corn.
Other options are store-sponsored savings. This is where the store offers to give you a free card with an account number. Every time you shop in that particular branch of stores, you give them the card or account number during checkout to receive possible discounts. This is sometimes called a paperless coupon requiring some sort of membership sign up or obligation. This is a great way to save money but the trade off is that the store collects the information of what you are buying. If this does not bother you this is a great opportunity to save money while shopping.
Never pay for coupons since it is usually against the retailer៲ules to accept third party coupons. Read the fine print at the bottom. If you pay for coupons you are not saving money. You might actually be spending more. Retailers give coupons away for free in order to promote a certain item.
Some coupons can lead to impulse or needless spending and will hurt your budget. There are not special tricks to using coupons, but in order to benefit from them you must only use the ones that pertain to items that you already buy.
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