This is a guest post written by Tom Tessin. He runs Find Secured Cards a blog dedicated to those looking to save money, or dig themselves out of debt.
Everyone in today’s era has to grocery shop. Unless you’re some magically human being that doesn’t need to supply groceries for their family, I wanted to show you how I’m able to cut my grocery bill by almost half each, and every time I go to the grocery store. I’m hoping by the time you read this article, you will be saving too!
Get a hold of the Sunday paper
The Sunday paper is jam packed filled with coupons, and if you’re not subscribing to the paper, you’re missing out. What you’re going to want to do is get the paper any way you can. You can either do this by getting it delivered to your home, picking it up a local store that has them, or you can do what I do, and that’s be the ultimate cheap-o, and have your neighbor give it to you after they are done.
Store your coupon books
Every Sunday, you will want to grab every coupon book that comes from Smart Source, Red Plum, and occasionally there are some from other brands such as P and G. You’ll want to label the front of the coupon book with the date. I will tell you why later on in this post.
Subscribe to online coupon databases
Now, it’s going to take you a few months to gather all of the coupon books. What you’re going to want to do now is before you go shopping, you’ll want to head to a site such as CouponMom.com, or TheGroceryGame.com. TheGroceryGame is around $10 for 8 weeks, while the CouponMom is free. I use them both, since they save me a boat load of money!
When you’re ready to shop, you’re going to want to get a list of things that are on sale. The cool thing about these lists is that they are going to tell you what’s on sale, and how you can apply a coupon to the sale price, so you can get the ultimate savings! Check off the items you want, or you find that are a good deal, and print it out.
Now, if you look next to the items you want, you’ll see words such as, “10/1 SS.” I know, it’s going to seem foreign at first, but it’s really easy to get used to. What you’ll find out that the number such as, “10/1″ is the date, 10/1/09, or whatever, and SS stands for “Smart Source” You’ll want to go to your smart source book for that date, and find the coupon. You’ll want to rinse, and repeat.
Head to eBay
I love this trick, and every time I tell someone this, they love it too. I know I’m going to go shopping every week, so what I’ll do is head to eBay to see if there are coupons up for bidding. Yes, I know, I’m paying for coupons, but I can always save. For example, I was able to get a $5 off my order of $25 for the entire month. I only had paid $.99 for it! That $1 essentially saved me $19.
Buy store brands and shop!
You’re finally ready to go shopping, and when you have your list, your coupons, and everything else, you’ll want to prepare to go shopping. You’ll find that you won’t be able to save on everything, but as long as you buy store brand products, and everything on sale, I can promise you that you can save right there.
In the end, make a game out of it. My wife and I follow this strategy. What you’ll want to do is look at your receipt at the end. You’ll want to take the amount you spent, and divide it by how many items you bought. This should be on your receipt. For example, if you spent $75.50, and you had 55 items, you spent $1.37 per item.
Our ladder goes as follows –
- $1.00 per item and under: 5 stars
- $1.25 per item and under: 4 stars
- $1.45 per item and under: 3 stars
- 1.60 per item and under: 2 stars
- 1.75 per item and under: 1 star
If you make a game out of it, you can have fun. I hope this post helps you out, and I’m ready to see everyone reading this save at least 40% or more!