Using coupons can save you a lot of money when you shot. Unfortunately when you have more than a handful of coupons, it can quickly become a disorganized mess, leaving you with expired coupons, forgetting to use a coupon, or worse, not being able to find a coupon you are certain you have. there are some commercial coupon organizers on the markets, but you can easily make one yourself.
To make an organizer for coupons yourself, get a binder with tabs, photo inserts ( the kinds that have three or four pockets on each side of the page) or trading card inserts (9 pockets on each side of the page), and your trusty pair scissors for cutting of the coupons. You will also need a smaller accordion checkbook style organizer that you will use for your grocery shop, this will be your smaller coupon organizer
First, what are the areas that you use coupons for most frequently? These will be your tab sections.
- Sauces / Dressings / Condiments
- Flour / Baking / Seasonings
- Cereal / Breakfast
- Frozen foods
- Canned Goods / Soups / Boxed meals
- Pasta / Rice / Ethnic
- Cleaning / Paper goods
- Health / Beauty / Medicine
You can adjust these as needed. When you create your tabs, it makes sense to use the most frequently used ones at the beginning of your binder and the lesser-used ones at the back. then place your coupons in the slots. Add more inserts as needed.
You should try to roughly organize them with the ones that are first to expire at the beginning, that way you can use them before they expire. And each month, you should go through the binder and double-checked the expiry dates. Pull out all the ones expiring within the next month and put them at the very front of your book, or set them aside if you do not plan to use them. The ones you have set aside you can always use a coupon trade if you have one coming up soon.
Now you want to set up your smaller checkbook organizer. Again, use the same tab system so they are organized quite easily. then when you grocery shop, you just need to transfer a coupon from the meat section of your binder into the meat section of your smaller organizer.
When it is time to go grocery shopping, check your list and then pull out the relevant coupons. Put these coupons into your smaller checkbook style organizer so you have them handy when you put your groceries up to pay. It is always good to take your binder with you as well, that way if you do see a killer deal that will end up paying you money or end up free, you can go ahead and do it without having to make a second trip. But do have the ones you plan on using assessable in the smaller checkbook organizer, as it will save you a lot of time at the grocery store as well as keep everyone behind you in line much happier.
If you participate in many coupon exchanges, you may find it worthwhile to create a second binder that you keep all those unneeded coupons in. For instance, a cat food coupon might be useless for your pet free house but someone with a cat might trade you those cat food coupons for their unneeded diaper coupons.