I am so thrilled with this entire coupon thing. I have saved so much money. Today I bought about $400 in groceries but paid $180 (approx) for all of them. I am stock piling away. Check out my storage closet.

Think about it...today I bought 4 16oz jars of peanut butter for $2.50 which makes them .62 cents each. This is just crazy. Last week I bought Ragu Spaghetti sauce for $.25 cents a jar. I bought Goodnites (pullups) that the boys use at night. I usually pay $13.99 for a Jumbo pack. I paid $6.99 today. They were on sale for $8.99 at Albertson's and I had $2.00 off coupons.

The best deals are the BOGOF...Say you buy Diapers that are on sale for $8.00 for 36ct and if you buy one you get one free. Then you have a 8 Manufacture coupons for diapers you have saved up from online coupon printing, the Sunday paper, etc. So you buy 4 pks of diapers for $32.00 and you get 4 pks of diapers for FREE. Then you get an additional $8.00 (8 $1.00 Manfac. Coupons) from the $32.00, so now you pay $24.00 for 288 diapers (total of all 36ct pks. THAT is HUGE. Diapers are regularly 14.99 per pk. so you would have over time paid $119.92 for these diapers and you just paid $24.00. Give yourself a pat on the back.

Some stores even offer wipes for FREE when you purchase sale items like diapers. This is just an example of how to save and to stockpile.

TOP FOODS has buy one get two free...these are even better deals. It takes time to get this all down. I am on week three and really feel like I am getting the hang of it. I spent this afternoon from 1-4pm with my kids doing all my stockpiling shopping for the week. I spent 20 min this week putting together my lists and coupons for ea store so I was all prepared.

The best part is my hubby is raving about me and that makes me feel good. It is always good when you hubby appreciates the hard work you do to save money for the family.

If you want to know more here you go. Jen Leverton is who showed me how to do all this. A lady I just met at a restaurant who took the time to sit down and teach me how to save. Pay it forward!

Shopping Smart

Shopping Smart is an easy way to save hundreds of dollars on groceries each month. Shopping Smart is successful because it teaches two distinctive types of shopping. Shopping Smart is basically matching grocery and drug store super sale items with manufacturers' coupons for the best possible savings, then stockpiling to reduce weekly grocery spending.

Stockpiling vs. Need Shopping”

Are you careful to limit your purchases to the bare necessities? Do you try to get only what you really need? Stop doing that! Shopping Smart is about buying a lot more than you need. If you are shopping each week for only what you will need or eat that week YOU ARE WASTING MONEY! That's what the grocery stores want you to do. It’s called Need Shopping.

The most exciting type of shopping, and the one that makes you successful at Shopping Smart, is Stockpiling. By stockpiling you are building your own store at home. You are buying more than you need while the sales trend is running. Then when the sales trend changes, we are not forced to buy at a premium price. A basic guideline for how much to stockpile is a 3-month supply. You will learn, over time, how much to stockpile for your family. Stockpiling is the key to Shopping Smart.


Because supermarkets run sales in categorical trends it takes approximately 12 WEEKS to get a well-rounded stockpile. Each week you will notice that you are stockpiling in different categories. Example, week one you are buying more than you need of toothpaste and dish soap. In this way, you are building your stockpile in those categories. Then your stockpile will carry you through to the next toothpaste and dish soap sales trend.

The “NEED” List

The need list is comprised of things you need to buy because you don't have them in your stockpile or they are perishable, such as produce. You will want to keep these purchases to a minimum. The longer you stockpile, the shorter your need list will become. By buying lots of super sale items, your stockpile will become so full (pantry, frig and freezer) that your need list will usually consists of only a few items each week. When getting started, and until your stockpile gets built up (the 12 WEEK RULE), you may want to do your need shopping at discount supermarkets.

The Manufacturers

As an incentive to buy their products, manufacturers publish coupons in a variety of places. The best place to get coupons is the Sunday paper. You will sometimes see manufacturer’s coupons in the Albertsons, Safeway, Fred Meyer and other store ads. They will read “Manufacturer’s Coupon” at the top and have a UPC bar code. Some coupons found in the store ads will state “Good only at (other store name)”. Keep these as Albertsons accepts coupons from other stores.


"Why shop at Albertsons?” In short, Albertsons has the best coupon policy, and they have great super sales. Furthermore, there is no limit on the number of identical manufacturer’s coupons that Albertsons will accept. If you have 15 coupons for Pantene shampoo, Albertsons will accept all 15 coupons. Albertsons’ accepts up to 10 coupons per transaction from other grocery stores. Other stores include the Safeway, Fred Meyer, QFC, Top Foods or Thriftway coupons, *mega coupons, ticker tape coupons you get after checking out and the manufacturer's coupons that state "Good only at (other store name)." Not all of them are worth using as Albertsons may have an equal or better sale on the same product. If the coupon is for another store’s brand name product, Albertsons will substitute their brand and honor the coupon.

Note: Albertsons does not accept ad coupons from variety stores such as Rite Aid, Wal-Mart and Target. The ad coupons must be from other grocery chains.

*Mega Coupons – From time to time, most stores will issue what we call mega coupons. Usually, they are worth $5 off $50 in groceries, $10 off $75 or $20 off $100. Albertsons accepts any stores’ mega coupon.

Your Coupon File

When organizing your coupon filing system, you will want to file and store your coupons in a way that makes sense to you. I recommend using a small storage box filled with envelopes labeled with categories based on the aisles in your grocery store. You may use some of the manufacturer’s coupons the week they come out, but many will be filed and used weeks or months later. Remember less is more; there is no reason to keep coupons for products that your family will never use. It's about knowing what coupons are best, and when to use them. Start by getting your coupons from the Sunday paper. Also, as of this year, the Internet is now offering coupons of good value. This is due to new software that is in place that facilitates limits as to how many coupons may be printed. As a result, manufacturers are offering more coupon value.

The Daily and Sunday Newspaper

The manufacturer’s coupons and store ad coupons that you need will come from the daily and Sunday edition newspaper. I recommend purchasing the Sunday paper in even numbers. Two papers for a family of two, four papers for a family of three or four and six papers for a family of five or more. If you are in the first 12 weeks and are still building your stockpile, you may want to consider purchasing even more.

Getting Ready
Most grocery store ads come in the mail on Tuesday. Save all supermarket advertisements that come in the mail. Albertsons, Safeway, QFC and Top Foods come on Tuesday. The sales week begins on Wednesday and ends on Tuesday. But since you get new coupons to go with the current week’s sales on Sunday, it is best to wait to shop until Sunday, Monday or Tuesday.

Most Drug store ads come in the Sunday paper. The sales week begins on Sunday and end on Saturday, giving you even more time to shop. Fred Meyer, Target, Walgreen’s and Rite Aid come in the Sunday paper along with the manufactures coupon inserts. Most of the time you will find a Smart Source, Valassis and a P@G insert. Cut and file any manufacturer's coupons from these sections of the newspaper. Clip and file all manufacturers’ coupons. Cutting and filing coupons should take only about 15 minutes once you do it a few times.

Read through the ads and circle the items that you use and have a good sale price. Each major supermarket in your area will run most of the same sales on the same items; compare store sale prices to find the best value. Then check to see if you have coupons to match for further savings. Be careful to read everything on the coupon. You don’t want surprises at the check out. Also, look for words like “good on any…” especially when a specific item is featured in the picture. Often times, you may use the coupon on “any” of that manufacturer’s products, not just the pictured item. Just because an item is on sale and you have a coupon, doesn’t mean it is time to use the coupon. Nearly every item runs through several levels of sales before it reaches its lowest super sale price. This is where knowing when to stockpile with that coupon can save you a lot of money at check out. Once you have determined which items you wish to purchase make a list and pull these coupons from your file. Then list the number of items you wish to purchase based on the number of coupons you have next to the item description on your list. Take the coupons to the store in a separate envelope.


When stockpiling, shop only from your list, bring your store card, and your coupons. Check expiration dates on all coupons before going to the store. Keep your need-shopping list separate from your stockpiling list. It is much easier to keep track of your savings.

Tips and Examples

Tip 1.
Make a weekly grocery budget if you do not already have one. Don’t expect to save money until you have stockpiled for a 12 week cycle. After 12 weeks you should save about 50% on your over all grocery budget.

Example 1.
If your budget is $200 a week, after the initial 12 weeks you should save $5200 a year. WOW!

Tip 2.
When looking thru the weekly advertisements, pay attention to the BOGO sales. You can save the most amount of money using 2 coupons on a buy one get one sale.

Example 2.
Dove shampoo and conditioner is on a buy one at $4.99 get one free sale at Rite Aid. You have 2 -$1.50 coupons making your final price $1.00 each, saving 80%.

Tip 3.
Use coupons that you have even on free items.

Example 3.
Albertsons has Yoplait yogurt on sale 20 for $10. If you buy 20 you get a free Pillsbury piecrust. You can use coupons for the yogurt and a coupon for the piecrust. If you had 10 –$1.00/2 yogurts and -$1.00 for pie crust your final price would be they owe you $1.00 that would come off your final bill.

Tip 4.
Share coupons with a friend. Their family probably doesn’t use all the same products as yours.

Example 4.
You will receive ticker tape coupons for competitors products at check out. When I buy Similac formula, I get a buy one get one coupon for Enfamil.

Tip 5. Watch ticker tape announcements for up coming promos from manufactures.

Example 5.
Gerber will give you back $5.00 for your next shopping trip when you spend $25.00 on any Gerber products between Dec 1st – Dec 31st in one transaction

1 comment:

Jodi said...

Wow...you have learned a lot and are really taking it all in! Go you! I will have to read through this info again and see if I can pick up anything. Thanks ;)

Blog Archive